There is one thing THE VAMPIRE DIARIES excels at: cliffhangers. It knows exactly how to end each episode and every season in such a way that fans are always clamoring for more. Season 5 ended with Bonnie and Damon being sucked away into the black abyss after the Other Side was ripped apart. So it is fitting that the first episode of Season 6 ends with Bonnie and Damon sitting idyllically in a kitchen enjoying a scrumptious breakfast together – without any hint as to where they really are. It guarantees that fans are coming back for more just to find out the answers to not only where Damon and Bonnie are, but also if Alaric agreed to wipe Elena’s memories of her love for Damon. Now that we know Damon is still out there somewhere, every fan is praying that Alaric refused. But imagine if he agreed? The prospect alone is hair-raising.
At a recent press screening, executive producer Caroline Dries provided a few clues and talked about what else is upcoming in Season 6 of THE VAMPIRE DIARIES.
Where Are Bonnie and Damon?
CAROLINE: That’s the mystery. That was supposed to be a tease. You’ll find out. We’ll figure it out in the next episode. We just wanted to tease people and say, “Don’t worry. We haven’t forgotten about them.”
Elena’s Request to be Mind-Wiped
CAROLINE: That is a big part of the next episode. What she is asking of Alaric isn’t just about her. Damon is his friend too. For her, it is not a hard decision; but for him, he’s like, “I don’t know if I can do this to my friend.” So that will be Alaric’s emotional journey in the next episode.
Who is Tripp?
CAROLINE: He came about because we wanted to show Matt thriving in Mystic Falls without supernaturals. Every episode Matt is having his life in jeopardy or somebody’s threatening to kill him or something. So it’s like, “What’s Matt’s life like when he can just not have to have a death threat every five minutes?” And we kind of wanted to give him a father-figure/coach-type guy. So that’s where Tripp came out of. But it’s Mystic Falls. Not everyone is who they say they are really. But he will ultimately become an interesting, layered, dynamic character that’s not necessarily a good guy or a bad guy. He actually represents like a normal person — like if you’re not in love with Damon or Stefan — like a normal person’s point-of-view on the whole vampire world.
CAROLINE: We’re going to answer that question in the next episode. He is up to something that is on point with what’s going on in the Damon-Stefan story. . . We’ve only ever really seen Enzo in the context of Damon. Damon is his best friend. He’s like Damon’s cellmate and so Damon dying obviously took a toll on him. So when we find him — while we saw Stefan had given up on Damon — Enzo is going to have had a different reaction to Damon’s death. He doesn’t give up on him. So his point of view is in direct conflict with Stefan’s point of view — so he and Stefan continue to be at odds.
Alaric & Jo
CAROLINE: What we kind of wanted to explore is what Alaric is going through this season. He is a vampire hunter who was turned into a vampire, went crazy and then died. So now that he is back, it is like, “He’s going to have some emotional baggage.” But he is also kind of an adult figure on the show. So as Elena is going through her drama and Jeremy’s got his drama, it is like he can’t just sit there and mope and cry about his problems, so he internalizes a lot of stuff. But one of the conflicts he is having, as he told Elena, is he hates being a vampire. So one of the problems he is going to be having is how to go on a normal date and be a normal guy again, and [Jo] is going to bring that side out of him. That’s what his struggle is going to be.
Stefan’s New Lady Love
CAROLINE: Ivy is a potential love interest and she kind of opens the door to Stefan’s world that we have never seen before. We start to see his process as a vampire. We have seen him in flashbacks, obviously, but we have only really seen him for the 3 years that the show has been on for in their timeline. So we get to learn what his process is as a vampire, starting over and living different identities. ‘Cause we have only seen him as Stefan Salvatore and in turn as Elena’s boyfriend. So we get to see Stefan Salvatore, who works as a mechanic at a garage in Savannah. So that will kind of open up a whole new world for a little while.]
Tyler Trying to Avoid Reactivating the Werewolf Curse
CAROLINE: It continues to be this threat — this thing that is out there. He’s gone through the whole process. He knows what the mistakes are now. He’s lived it. So him dealing with these rage issues. It’s just something that is bubbling inside of him. Whenever he picks a fight with somebody, we’re always reminded of this leads to that. So he’s going to be dealing with that. And you probably sensed some chemistry with Liv, so they’re going to kind of be a part of each others’ storylines and helping him resisting in indulging in his rage.’
Liv & Luke
CAROLINE: We’ll get bits and pieces of it for awhile. We’re trying to pepper in the mythology. Liv and Luke will play an important part of that.
Abandoning Doppleganger References
CAROLINE: I just finished Episode 10. We haven’t said it once in 10 episodes. In the writers’ room sometimes we’ll be like, “Ugh, maybe this is a doppelgänger thing” and like, “Nope. Don’t say that word. Somebody think of a different idea.” So we’ve been pretty diligent about that. And I’m pretty sure if we say it, it’s just to make fun of it. I really am proud of actually the whole doppelgänger thing, but I get it. It is like, “We did that story, so moving on.”
CAROLINE: He doesn’t really get dark. He’s really just feeling betrayed that Bonnie lied to him for all those episodes and then kind of saying she’s dying over the phone. So he’s going to try to find some meaning in these first few episodes. He hasn’t hit his rock-bottom yet.
The Love Triangle
CAROLINE: I can tease that we definitely keep the love stories alive. We might not play it out in a traditional way, but they will feel very satisfying. You will have your moments of frustration where the fans hate us and then we will have moments where they are freaking out and being thankful. So there is kind of that push-and-pull that we do. But I think it is done in a way that feels fresh for a show that is in Season 6 and has had the same characters and this love triangle for a long time. I don’t really call it a triangle, because Stefan has become more of a soul-friend of Elena’s and he’s dealing with his own stuff, but those two are still very connected. It’s more “How do we maintain Elena and Damon’s love story, while he’s not present?” So that was our challenge as writers, but I think we do a cool job of it.
Stefan and Caroline
CAROLINE: We’ll continue to play that. Caroline is kind of seeing layers of it. Caroline is not even realizing how deep her feelings are. She just feels hurt and lied to and ignored. So she’ll continue to do that. But Stefan is dealing with it in his own way, obviously. He just cut all ties and is moving on with his life. I think he cannot even process or fathom the idea of another heavy emotional connection. So in his brain, he hasn’t even opened up his mind to the notion that Damon is gone or being with someone or actually having a romance with someone. So it’s that frustrating thing. So I’m basically saying, it’s a very slow build for them.
Enzo’s Flirations With Caroline
CAROLINE: Enzo is just super charming. We’ll continue to have that kind of dynamic between the two.
Breaking the Traveler’s Anti-Magic Spell
CAROLINE: [Caroline’s] going to keep trying. It’s important to her. Like the town, it is more of a symbolic thing for her and less of a plot-drive, if that makes sense. We were like, “We could make this a storyline where they get a bunch of witches and they try to undo the Travelers’ spell,” then we’re like, “Then we’re having scenes with witches and then we’re doing spells and no one cares.” So we were like, ‘”Let’s not make that the main story and let’s just make it more of the metaphor for what they can’t have,” which is the ability to go home and be together and sleep in their own beds and stuff like that. We’ve always kind of said it is like the metaphor for when you’re in your second year of college and it’s like, “Ok, now I’m in college. My home is now where I go home on Thanksgiving or Christmas vacation.” It stops feeling like home after a little while and like, “This is my new life.”
CAROLINE: Yeah, there are flashbacks coming up. We will see — I won’t tell you the date — but we will see an era that we have not seen before in flashbacks and it will help tie together a bunch of storylines. It is going be in Episode 4.
New Big Bad Villain
CAROLINE: Yes, we are getting a new villain. He does break the mold. He is just like a crazy person and he’s super-fun to write. The actor’s name is Chris Wood. He’s very charismatic and charming and psychotic and likable and unlikable in all the right ways. We get to meet him in a few episodes and he’s going to stick around for a while, hopefully.
All new episodes of THE VAMPIRE DIARIES may be seen Thursday nights at 8:00 p.m. on the CW.