The Vampire Diaries: Episode "Pilot" - Recap

Kevin Williamson (Dawson's Creek, Scream) and Julie Plec (Kyle XY) bring the world of author L.J. Smith to life with the series premiere of The Vampire Diaries. The pilot features Ian Somerhalder and Paul Wesley as the Salvatore brothers, vampires whose centuries-old war spills over into their hometown of Mystic Falls, Virginia as well as the life of Elena Gilbert, played by Nina Dobrev.

Full disclosure: I approach this series with next to no knowledge of the books that inspired it. What's good about that is I'm able to take the show for what it's meant to be: an on-going television drama with a world of characters and situations all-its-own, separate from the novels. Still, you should feel welcome to bring your knowledge and thoughts on the series, both printed and televised, to the boards for discussion.

I'm a Vampire and this is my story.

It quickly became clear why Kevin Williamson's Twitter account read, "We're in the woods again" the other day, as the woods is precisely where this episode began. Late at night, a fog creeps through the trees and onto a back road where couple Brooke and Darren drive home. They suddenly spot a man in the middle of the road but it's too late. Their SUV sends him flying up over the car and onto the road.

Darren gets out to check on the him. We linger on a shot of a ring the seemingly hurt man wears before he springs up, grabs Darren, grows fangs and delivers the first neck bite of a show that's sure to be full of 'em.

I have to know her.

It's the first day back at school in Mystic Falls and we're introduced to Elena as she writes in her diary about the upcoming months. She lives with her Aunt Jenna and younger brother Jeremy. Their parents died in a car crash earlier in the year. Aunt Jenna means well but is hardly prepared for two teenagers. Jeremy seems like any other teenage boy on the first day of school.

"I predict that this year is going to be kick ass and that all the sad and dark times are going be over and you're going to be beyond happy."

Elena catches a ride to school with her friend Bonnie who's explaining that her Gramms has been telling Bonnie to explore her psychic gifts. I mean, after all, she "predicted Obama." A small, dark object slams into the windshield and Bonnie brings the car comes to a screeching halt.

After the girls compose themselves, they continue on their way to Mystic Falls High School as a crow looks on.

Elena's greeted at school by Caroline, a sweetly condescending friend, as well as a Matt, a cold and spurned ex-boyfriend.

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