In the pilot episode, we learned that Elena Gilbert is the lookalike of Katherine. As the show went on, we learn about Katherine Pierce in the flashback. In 1864, she met the Salvatore brothers and is responsible for transforming them into the vampires. She would ultimately make her return in the Season 1 finale. Story arcs involving Katherine were refreshing and captivating. A sassy, fearless, and dangerous vampire who can easily manipulate anyone to get what she wants. While undoubtedly, Katherine Pierce made TVD much fun and allowed Nina to display her actress prowess. However, when the show expanded on the doppelganger storylines by introducing Silas, Amara, Tom Avery, it failed to attract the fans and turned out to be disastrous.
The love triangle between Elena and the Salvatores is the highlight of the show. First the brothers were involved in a love triangle with Katherine and then Elena. This allowed for a compelling storytelling and created numerous iconic moments. Ever since the show began, the chemistry between Elena and Damon was undeniable. The writers had to work extra to keep them apart in Season 2, but the fans pressure kept on increasing. Damon’s feelings were pretty evident and he didn’t miss a chance to make a move on Elena. However, Elena stayed loyal to Stefan despite all the tension and drama.
However, when she became a vampire, she realizes that she is in love with Damon. It was pretty clear that the feelings were influenced due to the vampiric sirebond. In the beginning of Season 4, she plans to spend an eternity with Stefan, and within few episodes, she breaks up with him for Damon. Some would say it’s a bad storytelling on Julie Plec’s part, but the fans got what they wants. Nonetheless, Delena story arcs and their moments are simply memorable and iconic.
1. TURNING INTO VAMPIRES
During its eight season run, the show turned numerous characters into vampires and few vampires ultimately reverted back to humans. However, the two major and significant vampire transformations were of Caroline and Elena. In case of Caroline, the vampirism proved to be a pivotal development for the character. It developed her character further, from a timid and insecure girl to a courageous and confident woman. Caroline’s vampire transition not only helped her, but also the Mystic Falls gang as she proved be extremely helpful at times. She helped Stefan with his blood addiction, dealt with various supernatural threats using her abilities.
Elena’s vampire transition proved to be shocking for the viewers. Killing a major character and turning her into a vampire was a huge risk, but it paid off. Vampire Elena turned out to be much entertaining and engaging than the normal Elena, it also gave Nina an opportunity to showcase her diverse acting skills. If Elena had not turned into a vampire then Delena would have never happened. Fans were rooting for Damon and Elena to be together, the writers were doing all they can to keep Elena-Stefan together. This was the major challenge for the writers in Season 2 & 3. Ultimately, when Elena became a vampire, the writers pulled the trigger. According to Julie Plec, it would have been a destruction to the Elena’s character if she had forgiven Damon and chose to be with him while being a human. It was totally against what she stood for. This is the reason why Elena gave in to her feelings only when she became a vampire.