The Vampire Diaries: Season 1 (2009 - 2010)


Season 1
The Vampire Diaries

Critics Consensus

It's not particularly innovative and there's a lot of angsty brooding going on, but there's a self-referential cheekiness in The Vampire Diaries that will appeal directly to its target audience.



Critic Ratings: 27


Audience Score

User Ratings: 483
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Air date: Sep 10, 2009
Air date: Sep 17, 2009
Air date: Sep 24, 2009
Air date: Oct 1, 2009
Air date: Oct 8, 2009
Air date: Oct 15, 2009
Air date: Oct 29, 2009
Air date: Nov 5, 2009
Air date: Nov 12, 2009
Air date: Nov 19, 2009
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The Vampire Diaries: Season 1 Photos

Tv Season Info

Think you know vampires? You don't. Neither does Elena (DeGrassi: The Next Generation's Nina Dobrev), but she's about to. Paul Wesley (Everwood) and Ian Somerhalder (Lost) star in the series as two vampire brothers at war for her soul.


Nina Dobrev
as Elena Gilbert/Katherine Pierce
Paul Wesley (II)
as Stefan Salvatore
Steven R. McQueen
as Jeremy Gilbert
Ian Somerhalder
as Damon Salvatore
Kat Graham
as Bonnie
Sara Canning
as Aunt Jenna
Marguerite MacIntyre
as Sheriff Forbes
David Anders
as John Gilbert
Jasmine Guy
as Bonnie's Grandmother
Benjamin Ayres
as Mr. Tanner
Rob Pralgo
as Mayor Lockwood
Autumn Dial
as Tina Fell
James Remar
as Guiseppe Salvatore
Spencer Locke
as Amber Bradley
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Critic Reviews for The Vampire Diaries Season 1

All Critics (27) | Top Critics (18)

Williamson has said that the Vampire Diaries books eventually take a unique turn and that the series will do the same, but quicker. Little in the premiere will encourage viewers to return in order to find out if that's true.

Sep 10, 2009 | Full Review…
Top Critic

A tolerably flavorsome ball of crimson bubblegum.

Sep 18, 2009 | Full Review…
Top Critic

The Vampire Diaries nonetheless satisfactorily opens up yet another TV world of heightened youth, where blood-sucking is a metaphor for a whole range of fears and desires.

Sep 18, 2009 | Full Review…

The core teen couple is a winner.

Sep 18, 2009 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

It would be easy for the show to get bogged down in cheesy clichés, but as it builds its characters and its mythological world, cliches are about the last thing that you find.

Sep 10, 2019 | Full Review…

"Diaries" is actually mildly entertaining. But it's another angst-ridden teen tale set to angsty pop music in a gloomy and cloudy small town with a high school attended by a vampire -- in broad daylight, a trick he pulls off thanks to a special ring.

Jun 15, 2018 | Full Review…

I don't think it's terrible... I'll give it that. But there is a lot of rote vampire lore that they're just regurgitating in the story.

Sep 18, 2009 | Full Review…

There's some attempts to convey real emotion, but despite the amount of meat in the pilot-indicating that there's plenty to explore over the course of a season-The Vampire Diaries displays only faint signs of having any life in it.

Sep 10, 2009 | Rating: 4/10 | Full Review…

The story is pure cheese, but so, to my mind, that's the level upon which it should be judged. No comparing it to lobster, you know? The fog and the crow? This is a gothic (teen) romance. They have their place here.

Sep 10, 2009 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…

A good chunk of the show's target demographic of angst-ridden teenagers will likely fall in love at first sight, and their male counterparts might even derive some entertainment out of it as well.

Sep 9, 2009 | Rating: 7/10 | Full Review…

It might not be the most groundbreaking show on television right now, but it's a well-crafted, interestingly developed series, which really kicks up a gear after an anodyne opening episode.

Feb 5, 2010 | Full Review…

The Vampire Diaries is a mishmash of ideas we've seen before.

Feb 2, 2010 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Vampire Diaries: Season 1

  • Jul 19, 2019
    Based on the popular book series, The Vampire Diaries delivers a strong and compelling first season. The story follows two feuding vampire brothers named Stefan and Damon Salvatore who return to their home town of Mystic Falls, and while Stefan has come to get to know a young girl named Elena Gilbert who resembles the vampire who sired them Damon has his own nefarious plans. The show gets off to a really rough start, trying to incorporate the diary theme with voice-over and playing up the teen angst and romance. But about a third of the way into the season the show changes course and the plot takes and interesting turn. Additionally, the writers do an impressive job at creating suspenseful cliffhangers and at keeping the season constantly moving with exciting plot twists and reveals. Leads Nina Dobrev, Paul Wesley, and Ian Somerhalder give incredibly strong performances and have tremendous on-screen chemistry. Also, several notable stars make guest and reoccurring appearances, including Jasmine Guy, David Anders, Gina Torres, and James Remar. Plus, the score and soundtrack are extraordinarily well-done and do a wonderful job at complimenting the scenes and sets the right tone for the show. Season 1 of The Vampire Diaries can be kind of a mess at time, but proves to be a captivating supernatural drama.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Apr 15, 2019
    Pretty addictive show with good acting, although the melodramatic hugs between Elena and Stefan get old after a while. I've only spotted a couple illogical scripting glitches so far (such as the writers forgetting the lack of blood relation between Elena and her sibling when it came to a spell). But I need to get this off my chest: Lauren Cohan, who I *mostly* enjoyed in walking dead, really sucks at scenes where she's supposed to cry. It feels so forced and fake...not remotely up to par with the level of acting by others on the show. I was glad her character didn't last long. It's also laughable how the director apparently doesn't know where the human heart is located in the body, as a sword through the heart (o kill a vampire) usually ends up with a bloody spot in stomach region.
  • Mar 26, 2019
  • Jan 19, 2019
    I liked it the first season. Then it got repetitious vampires going off the rail. Caroline dated just about every guy in the show it felt like Days of Our Lives vampire style. I got bored with it
  • Jan 06, 2019
    The vampire diaries, Duo romance turned triangle for all the wrong reasons. Vampires. Need I say more. Love it. My favorite of all time TV series. Elena, the protagonist who cares about more about others then herself falls for new guy stefan who spoilers turns out to be a vampire with a hot brother.
  • Dec 04, 2018
    Imagine waking up one day to find out that your closest friends aren’t who they say they are. The TV series The Vampire Diaries is an American supernatural television series about vampires, werewolves, and witches. In the first season there’s lots of drama, horror, and emotional content leading up to people finding out that there are supernatural creatures living in Mystic Falls. The Vampire Diaries is realistic looking even the supernatural creatures look like normal people. People wouldn’t even know who the supernatural creatures are unless they’ve seen them or even experience an event with them. Everything about The Vampire Diaries seems real life from them acting like they’re in high school and college and even to the events happening in town. Actors Nina Dobrev who played Elena Gilbert and Paul Wesley who played Stefan Salvatore did a great job with their roles in this television series. Their acting skills convince me that this could happen in everyday life. In season 1 episode 6, Elena, starts to wonder why all these dramatic events are happening in Mystic Falls and why they’re all pointed to Stefan and his brother. Elena demands that Stefan shares his past with her because of the stuff happening in town and plus she found a picture of a girl who looks exactly like her but wasn’t her. Little did she know that his past started all the way back to the 1880’s before he became a vampire, which she still doesn’t know. Stefan starts sharing his past with Elena and he realizes that he must tell Elena what he is before someone else does. After he’s done with his past, he tells Elena that he is a vampire but the question is will she accept him or will she run and tell everyone in town….
  • Mar 18, 2017
    the first season of the Vampire Diaries gets off to a sluggish start and there’s a lot of angsty brooding as far as soap opera is concerned but it genuinley gets better with each episode Kevin Williamson of 'Scream' fame and Julie Plec create one of the best supernatural dramas on the CW not just for young girls who love romance but also for guys who love the vampire craze and the blood based on the popular books by LJ Smith the story focuses on a human girl and two vampire siblings along with some other fantasy elements the focus is Elena Gilbert at the first day of high school with her friends Bonnie Bennet and Caroline Forbes; Elena and her brother Jeremy live with their aunt Jenna one year after their parents death in a car accident, her brother is troubled and rebelling in his own way, Caroline is the preppy, mean girl with a sheriff for a mom and a divorced father, Bonnie is fascinated with her family tree's bizarre heritage, Tyler Lockwood is dating Vicky Donovan whom Jeremy pines for, Matt Donovan used to date Elena and is trying to move on, and Vicky deep down inside is hurting therefore leading to her excessive drug use and drinking and partying Everything completely changes when Elena meets Stefan Salvatore in the hallway at school, from then on she finds out he’s a vampire but he's not like the usual idea of vampires we're used to at this point for one thing is that he has sworn off human blood but it comes back to pull him back into his savagery every now and then at the start of the season Damon, Stefan’s brother returns to Mystic Falls after 15 years to cause trouble and wreak havoc, he wants Stefan to give into his urges a majority of the season he is the main antagonist making everyone unhappy but the more danger occurs among them it’s possible some redemption exists for him someday, who knows as the first season goes on Damon toys around with Caroline, Caroline and Matt start possibly have something, and even his mother comes into town Bonnie also starts to discover that she has witch powers, a talisman protects her from vampires, and she gets visits from her ancestor Emily Bennet who has ties to the Salvatores from way back What sets these vampires apary from others is that they feed on blood, if a human dies from a bite they come back; either they have to feed or die again permanantly, a dayight ring allows a vampire to walk in the sunlight, vervain prevents compulsion, they can’t get into a house without an invitation, their emotions are heightened 10 fold It's funny too because they make jokes about Anne Rice and Stephanie Meyers’ take on the vampire mythos from sparkling to Bela Lugosi and so on The main threat this season is the original Founders of Mystic Falls is that others know of the existence of vampires and they need a pocketwatch to destroy them The other amazing thing is that Elena bears a striking resemblance to Katherine Pierce whom was the affection of both Stefan and Damon, flashbacks show in 1864 how they met Katherine and how much she toyed with them both an old friend of Stefan’s comes back to Mystic Falls, a professor Alaric comes in to hunt the vampire that killed his wife (someone who has deep ties to the Gilberts) plus a lot of the Gilbert family history is revealed Jeremy later meets Anna while doing a report on the history of Mystic Falls, she’s also a vampire who also wants the Griomoire, (a book of spells) Elena while trying to deal with the supernatural world around her wants Stefan to remember who he truly is without giving into his monster instincts when the finale comes in it gets better and better because the stakes finally rises to a level you'd never expect, so many changes take place that set the stage for things to come a new world is about to open for the residents in Mystic Falls near the end of this first major story we also finally understand why Damon hates Stefan after all these years, being a vampire is a huge curse and holding a grudge for that long really weighs down on both of them The first season does a remarkable job setting up this mythology with slick writing, clever action, lots of blood, memorable characters, appropriate songs to fit each mood, and a promising setup for the rest of the series the bad stuff never leaves you, it follows you everywhere, you have to be ready when the good comes and when it does you invite it in, nothing defies rational thought, our actions set things in motion whether in the past or in the present everything will always come back no matter what if 'Twilight' didn't do it for you then 'The Vampire Diaries' revitalizes the vampire genre with such glee, dark chills, and supernatural drama 'True Blood' seems like its just sex and gore but with this the CW still makes it appealing without pandering too much to a particular demographic I love that this is one of my fav shows with the best monsters in pop culture!
  • Feb 02, 2017
    I watched majority of the seasons. Stopped a while back since i kind of grew out of the whole " vampires are awesome" age. But if you're into vampires, i would suggest you give Vampire Diaries a try!
  • Jan 24, 2017
    Vampire Diaries season 1 was a great intoduction to the vampire diaries.
  • Jan 12, 2016
    I, unlike many of those who had seen the series, never really had the chance to read the book just yet. Regardless of that fact, I was actually still curious. I love the introductions of the characters although, I must admit, there is a lot of room for growth. Just enough for me to stick around and wait for things to grow.

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