TV Preview: Vampire Diaries

September 9th, 2009

I’ve been dreading and putting off writing this preview, but we’re now a day away from the premiere, so I’ve got to say something about it. Anything. But to be honest: I still haven’t gathered all my thoughts about it, and I’m just too scared to even think about this show.

For most of you (I’m guessing practically ALL of you) this will just be another vampire show piggybacking on the hype of Twilight and True Blood. And I’m not disagreeing; that’s definitely the reason why CW picked up this show. For me though this show is much more: the TV adaption of one of my most beloved book series from LJ Smith. I adoooored these books as a teen and can’t begin to tell you how often I’ve read them. While they weren’t my favourite books from LJ Smith (have a look at the Nightworld series, Dark Visions, and the Secret Circle trilogy), they are the first books I read from her and they’ll always remain “sacred” to me.

When I found out the CW would make a TV show out of this, a part of me was ecstatic, but a larger part of me was just dreading it. You know how it is with book-to-TV/movie adaptions; you’ll never satisfy everyone and there will be some disappointments on the way. Whoever they cast in it, it will never match up 100% with however the characters looked in your mind.

And the more I see and hear about this Vampire Diaries TV show, the more I think that in the end I’m just going to be completely disappointed in it. Maybe it will still be an okay series (I doubt it though), but it won’t be my Vampire Diaries. Here’s one of the trailers:

Eek, there is just so much that is wrong! Some of the things might seem minor, but I don’t understand why they had to change it. For starters, Elena (the main character) is described in the books as a blue-eyed blonde, who starts off the series as a bit of a shallow self centered bitch. Not at all remotely like how they’ve portrayed her in the TV series. Then Bonnie is supposed to be bubbly short redhead, descended from druids and is psychic. Apparently they’ve changed  that in the show to “voodoo princess”. Then the third best friend Meredith is just completely missing from the show! There are more changes like this and I just don’t get most of them. Why base a show on a book if you’re going to change the entire thing?

Besides that though, even if you haven’t read the books, I still think it looks awful. Nothing about it seems compelling enough for me to watch it: the dialogue sounds dreadful, the characters look dull, and the plot laughable. It just seems as if they’re cashing in on the whole Twilight and True Blood buzz (“hey, let’s make our own vampire show!”).

Maybe it will turn out okay, but my gut feeling is telling me this will be utter crap. I’m definitely going to try to see when it comes out, but I’m not hopeful about it at all. My tip: ignore the TV show, buy the books instead (Amazon UK, Amazon US).

What do you think of Vampire Diaries? Will you be watching? Or maybe you had a beloved book that was adapted horribly? Discuss in the comments.