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The Vampire Diaries will be remembered as so much more than a teen drama

All good things must come to an end, and it’s officially The Vampire Diaries‘ time after Season 8.

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Executive producers Kevin Williamson and Julie Plec announced the series finale news at Comic-Con, then showed a farewell video from the cast.

Fans have long suspected that the series would be dunzo after Season 8, but this confirmation makes the news real and poignant.

I’ve watched the show since it premiered. Season 1, Episode 1, I was glued to my television. I was a fan of the books and couldn’t wait for the show. Not gonna lie: I was disappointed with the series at first. The show changed so much from the books I loved that I thought there was no way it would last.

The Vampire Diaries Season 1 Episode 1
Image: The CW

Yet I kept watching. More and more of the story unfolded until I was spending my week waiting for the next episode. Was it the same as the books I loved? No. But that only meant that this show was a new and exciting story I got to experience from the start.

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The show was also released at such a momentous time for television. The CW was on the rise as a new kind of channel for a new kind of viewer. It wasn’t all about sitcoms and family dramas anymore. Now we had stories for teens and young adults, which reflected the way we looked at relationships.

Sure, The Vampire Diaries was shrouded in the gorgeous and sexy veil of the supernatural, but there was a lot of truth in the growth of these characters. Elena’s journey to self-discovery reflected what a lot of young women were going through. And sure, she was torn between these two brothers, but her story was less about the love triangle and more about the decisions Elena would make that would define her for the rest of her life (or undead life, as the case may be).

The Vampire Diaries love triangle
Image: The CW

Was Elena a damsel in distress when the series started? Yeah, she absolutely was. But she grew into herself and ended up being able to stand on her own, make decisions on her own and lead a life that was all her own. Her decision to be with Damon (Ian Somerhalder) forever was her decision. And her decisions were powerful in a time where leading women were new to the television world.

The show wasn’t just about Elena, of course. As the seasons progressed, we became invested in the whole gang. Damon, Stefan, Caroline, Bonnie, Matt, Jeremy and Alaric all got meaningful stories of their own. We met the original family — Klaus, Elijah, Rebekah, Kol and Finn — who were such deep and interesting characters that they got a series all their own.

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At this point, The Vampire Diaries isn’t just a television show. It’s an empire of characters, an epic story and a journey through eight years that I will be hard-pressed to forget.

How do you think The Vampire Diaries will be remembered?

Before you go, check out our slideshow below.

vampire diaries couples slideshow
Image: The CW

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