The characters in The Vampire Diaries are memorable because of their unique personalities. Audience members relate to some more than others, and it’s part of the reason why the show inspires so many strong opinions. No two people are alike, which is true in fiction and reality.
With eight seasons worth of episodes, devoted fans know the cast of The Vampire Diaries inside and out. There are plenty of ways to distinguish the main characters, but each one has a specific quote that perfectly epitomizes their role in the series.
10 Matt Donavan: “I Can’t Say That I Hate Vampires, And Then Use Them When It’s To My Advantage.”
It took a few seasons, but Matt became one of the heroes fans hated in The Vampire Diaries. He was originally a person who would do anything for his friends, but his resentment towards vampires consumed him. Matt went from someone who was fueled by love, to someone who was fueled by loathing.
He stopped accepting help from his friends and even rejected Elena’s blood when he could die without it. Matt became the sheriff to protect Mystic Falls from vampires, even though the vampires are usually responsible for saving it.
9 Damon Salvatore: “Don’t Nickname. That’s My Thing.”
Every main character has a special Damon-created nickname, whether they like it or not. In fact, some even have multiple. Damon is the funniest person in the cast, and his nicknames became an integral running joke in The Vampire Diaries.
At this point, if Damon only called people by the names they were given, it would just feel plain wrong. Some of his most iconic include Caroline as Vampire Barbie, Rebekah as Barbie Klaus, Stefan as Bunny Snacking Pacifist, and Elena as Pouty.
8 Tyler Lockwood: “I Need To Go After [Klaus]. I Need To Find A Way To Destroy His Life.”
In The Vampire Diaries Season 2, Tyler had impressive character development. He could have had one of the best redemption arcs in the series if he wasn’t so wrapped up in getting revenge. Tyler ended up regressing horribly because he let his hatred for Klaus take over his life.
Killing Klaus was the only thing he cared about, and he even chose it over the girl he claimed to love. The irony is that Klaus let go of his hatred, while Tyler lost Caroline because he was so obsessed with it.
7 Katherine Pierce: “Do You Honestly Believe I Don’t Have A Plan B?”
Katherine is the most intelligent character in The Vampire Diaries. Every time Elena and the Salvatores think they’ve finally found a way to outsmart her, she’s one step ahead of them. Katherine always has a backup plan, as well as a backup plan for her backup plan.
Katherine was on the run from an immortal hybrid for half a century, and she picked up quite a few life skills during that time. Viewers quickly learned that if Katherine wanted something, there was no one who could stop her from getting it.
6 Klaus Mikaelson: “Truth Be Told, I’m As Evil As It Gets.”
To be fair, Klaus undergoes serious character development after his daughter is born in The Originals. But, as far as The Vampire Diaries goes, there was a time when Klaus really was as evil as it gets. He had no problem getting his hands dirty and then cleaning up for a celebratory dinner party.
Klaus’s ruthlessness is what made him such a good ally, as there were times when Elena and her friends needed someone to be the bad guy. As long as it aligned with his interest, such as keeping Elena human or anything related to Caroline, Klaus had them covered.
5 Caroline Forbes: “If You Want Something Done Right, You Have To Do It Yourself.”
There’s a reason why Caroline was the head of almost every club in school. She even took on other leadership roles such as the Chair of the Miss Mystic Falls Beautification Committee and the director of the policemen’s yearly raffle.
Whether it involved setting up for a dance or helping her friends survive the latest supernatural threat, Caroline always had to make sure everything was going according to plan. After becoming a vampire, she became more confident and self-assured, and now Caroline trusts herself more than anyone else.
4 Alaric Saltzman: “You Killed Me!”
In any other show, dying wouldn’t be a personality trait. However, it’s the best way to sum up Alaric’s character. He’s not a very good vampire hunter, and he never would have made it past the first season without his Gilbert ring.
Alaric has died so often it’s almost a joke. Damon might be Alaric’s best friend, but he’s killed him several times, once just because Alaric was getting on his nerves. Unsurprisingly, it caused some issues between them.
3 Stefan Salvatore: “I’m Not Sad! I’m Freakin’ Hungry!”
Stefan’s blood addiction isn’t something that he was able to fully conquer. Even at the end of the series, he didn’t have the same control over his urges that the rest of the characters did. Given how dynamic Stefan is when he’s on a ripper binge, it feels safe to say that fighting his vampire nature is part of what makes him so brooding.
Because of his animal blood diet, Stefan is quite literally always hungry, as only human blood can satisfy him. Vampires weren’t made to live off of deer, which is clear by how much weaker Stefan is than his brother.
2 Bonnie Bennett: “You Came Here Because You Needed Something, Right?”
Bonnie is the most powerful character in The Vampire Diaries. Her powers are unmatched, and she’s treated as the writers’ constant loophole. Any time a problem seems unsolvable, Bonnie recites some words and uses a spell to save the day. The downside of Bonnie’s abilities is that she became the go-to solution for her friends.
Bonnie would do anything for the people she cares about, and it didn’t take long for her to get taken advantage of. They only ever went to her when they needed something, and Elena was the worst offender. She was supposed to be Bonnie’s best friend, yet Elena didn’t even realize she’d been dead for months until she sought her out for help.
1 Elena Gilbert: “It’s Because Of Me. Everything Is Because Of Me.”
Viewers either love or hate Elena Gilbert depending on how they view her. Elena could be considered the most selfless person in the show, or the most self-centered. Nearly every bad thing that happens is because of her, and the other characters are forced to suffer because of how far the Salvatore Brothers will go to keep her safe.
Elena’s willing to sacrifice herself for those she loves, but she also has a savior complex. On the rare occasions that something doesn’t revolve around her, she finds a way to insert herself. Other characters have even called her out on her egocentrism.