When Kevin Williamson and Julie Plec teamed up to create a TV show full of throat-spilling vampire attacks, deep dark family secrets, and supernaturally-cursed teenagers, it was no surprise to me that I soon fell in love with the CW Network’s, “The Vampire Diaries” .
In fact, I expected to.
What I did not expect, however, was to fall in love with the character of Damon Salvatore: TVD’s callous, conniving, bloodsucking bad boy with a penchant for extreme vengeance, doomed extras and unsuspecting guest stars. Definitely not my usual type.
Sure, I’ll confess that his hot hip-shake in “Lost Girls”, the awesomeness of the Tanner attack and actor Ian Somerhalder’s vamp-tastic genetics certainly brewed a little fangirl infatuation. But love? Nope, not yet. I’m not that easy. But then came the unexpected. I discovered that all that diabolical vampire bravado was masking a lonely, lovesick misguided rebel with a cause and faster than a vamp-zip ‘cross town, I fell head over heels for this homicidal hottie.
It all began with a little episode called “History Repeating” (which is still, btw, one of my absolute favourite episodes of the season). Inviting us into the world of Mystic Falls according to Damon, “The Vampire Diaries” writers delivered one of their most climactic character reveal scenes and unexpectedly, the ‘turning point’ for me. I physically felt my heart wrench watching our anti-hero finally being brought to his knees, consumed by heartbreak and despair; believing all he’d been fighting for, all hope of reuniting with the love of his life was literally going up in flames before him. That was the defining moment when my view of the character of Damon Salvatore took on a whole new perspective.
And yes, I know he also tried to kill Bonnie here. But he didn’t. And in all fairness, it was Emily-possessed-Bonnie and pissed off vampires aren’t known for their impeccable sense of judgment and impulse-control.
But I digress; on with the post.
As the season has progressed and more details surrounding the ill-fated Salvatore legacy have been revealed, I have not only found myself falling more and more in love with this character by the episode, but also defending his point of view to those who still can’t see past his maniacal tendencies. Now don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that ripping people’s throats out and psychotically taunting your adversaries is the best way to deal with your emotional baggage. Not by a long shot. But do keep in mind, Damon is a vampire and most vampires have a tendency to act first and maybe think about it later.
What I am saying, is that despite his bloodthirsty, vengeance-prone vampire tendencies and his adamant protests to the contrary, at the root of Damon’s methods is a very human motivation we can all identify with:
Love for Katherine. Love for his brother, Stefan. Love that, despite over a century’s worth of jealousy and betrayal, continues to fuel an overwhelmingly desperate desire in him to recapture what should’ve been. In his own way, Damon Salvatore is seeking his happily ever after. All his thought is bent on it. And what girl honestly wouldn’t fall head over heels for a bad boy like that? (Assuming, of course, you can get past the whole maniacal undead bloodsucker thing.) 😉
Now before I sign off, this post would not be complete without my mentioning my growing appreciation for Ian Somerhalder’s acting chops in this role. This part seems to fit him like a second skin and it’s fang-tastically evident on screen. By really ‘sinking his teeth’ into it, Somerhalder has shown such entertaining versatility that I will no doubt be head over heels for this character for many blog posts to come.
Expect it 😉
Copyright © 2010 Lee MacOdrum