The Vampire Diaries is an American supernatural drama television series developed by Kevin Williamson and Julie Plec, based on the popular book series of the same name written by L. J. Smith. The series premiered on The CW on September 10, 2009 and concluded on March 10, 2017, airing 171 episodes over eight seasons.
The series follows the life of Elena Gilbert (Nina Dobrev), a teenage girl who has just lost both parents in a car accident, as she falls in love with a vampire named Stefan Salvatore (Paul Wesley). Their relationship becomes increasingly complicated as Stefan's mysterious older brother Damon Salvatore (Ian Somerhalder) returns, with a plan to bring back their past lover Katherine Pierce, a vampire who looks exactly like Elena. Both brothers protect Elena as they face various villains and threats to their town. The brothers' history and the town's mythology are revealed through flashbacks as the series goes on.