On September 10, 2009, The CW premiered a supernatural drama about a high school cheerleader who met and started crushing on the new, mysterious guy in school. She would later find out that he was a centuries-old vampire with a complicated relationship with his bad-boy vampire brother.
But that’s just where the drama started. Soon, that cheerleader would find out her best friend was a powerful witch, the resident mean girl in school need to sprout fangs in order to really grow up, and that she was a doppelgänger of those brothers’ first love, a vampire who had been running for 500 years to save herself from the first vampires ever created. Typical high school drama, right?
Five years and 100 episodes later, that girl — Elena Gilbert (Nina Dobrev) — is now a vampire herself, dating (on and off) that bad-boy brother Damon Salvatore (Ian Somerhalder), while her ex Stefan Salvatore (Paul Wesley) says goodbye to his dying first love Katherine Pierce (also Dobrev). My, how far we’ve come.