Rating: 3 stars
Buddy read with Devanshi!
Ok. Anyone who knows me knows that I love two things: Peter Pan and vampires (not necessarily together, but can you imagine!!??) So it comes as no surprise that I love The Vampire Diaries television show. I’ve been a big fan since I was about 12 or so and recently decided to rewatch the show in its entirety. This brought on the nostalgia of when I was reading the books, also at the tender age of 12. I didn’t remember a lot about them (I was a particularly skimmy reader back then) so I figured, why not reread the books as I rewatch the show?
The moon had not yet risen, and she could just make out the old graveyard and Wickery Bridge beyond it. The old graveyard dated from Civil War days, and many of the headstones bore the names of soldiers. It had a wild look to it; brambles and tall weeds grew on the graves, and ivy vines swarmed over crumbling granite. Elena had never liked it. “It looks different, doesn’t it? In the dark, I mean,” she said unsteadily. She didn’t know how to say what she really meant, that it was not a place for the living.
First of all, I was surprised by how good the writing is. Idk what I expected exactly, but well-done prose wasn’t it. It really feels like a spooky movie from the 90s and I really appreciated it.
Unfortunately, the rest of this wasn’t as good. The plot suffered significantly from iffy pacing. Instalove was a plague throughout. And worst of all, I absolutely hate the characters.
Scratch that. I absolutely hate Elena and Stefan, though really only when they’re together. Or when they’re pining after the other. Or when they breathe in each other’s general direction.
Confession time: while I love TVD, I don’t love Elena Gilbert. I think she’s really annoying, actually, and kind of a Mary Sue idiot. But book Elena makes her a saint. A paragon of excellency. The best written protagonist of all time.
Primarily, this is because book Elena and show Elena aren’t the same person. They’re entirely different in every conceivable way. Different hair, different eyes, different skin tone, different personality and priorities, different past traumas, different siblings, different friends, different aunt. Book Elena is a mean girl who literally vows to make Stefan her boyfriend solely because he snubs her and she’s used to every male on the planet being obsessed with her. It’s the most ridiculous thing in the world. She acts like it’s some big thing when she just needs a reality check. But then Stefan reveals that he loved her the whole time even though they don’t know each other and have never actually held a conversation for longer than 2 seconds. And from there, it’s true love.
Every other character is different from their show counterpart too: Stefan is like 600 years old and still hung up on Katherine, Bonnie is a meek redhead, Caroline is a frenemy rival, and some girl named Meredith who isn’t Meredith Fell is the sarcastic best friend. The only character who’s actually the exact same is Matt.
This isn’t a problem. I don’t mind that the show changed the source material so much. They actually made better, more well rounded characters than the original, and improved the plot too. But it’s strange that the showrunners felt the need to change everything so much but keep names and the title of the series the same.
I’m definitely going to continue my reread and hopefully make it passed where I dropped the series back in the day. If not for the nostalgia, for my undying desire to know what happens differently.
Evil will never find peace. It may triumph, but it will never find peace.
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