Nina Dobrev Leaving “Vampire Diaries”

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HOLLYWOOD—The TV world was delivered a devastating blow on Monday. The star of the CW hit “The Vampire Diaries,” Nina Dobrev announced that she is leaving the series. Yes, its something that has caused many to question rather the series has a chance of survival without its top star.

Dobrev took to her Instagram account to right a lengthy post for fans.

“I’ve just spent the most beautiful weekend on Lake Lanier in Georgia with my own TVD Family, the cast and crew of The Vampire Diaries. I want to be the first to tell you that it wasn’t just a holiday celebration, it was a goodbye party. I always knew I wanted Elena’s story to be a six season adventure, and within those six years I got the journey of a lifetime. I was a human, a vampire, a doppelganger, a crazy immortal, a doppelganger pretending to be human, a human pretending to be a doppelganger. I got kidnapped, killed, resurrected, tortured, cursed, body-snatched, was dead and undead, and there’s still so much more to come before the season finale in May. Elena fell in love not once, but twice, with two epic soulmates, and I myself made some of the best friends I’ll ever know and built an extended family I will love forever.

There’s more to come before we wrap this up, and I promise you’ll get to hear all about my experiences over the next month as we approach the season finale (I have given an exclusive interview for the June issue of SELF Magazine that I am excited for you to see!), but until then I invite you to hop on the roller coaster ride that is Elena Gilbert’s life and join me as I celebrate her and prepare to say goodbye to her — and to my work family — as I move on to the next chapter of my life. I want to share this goodbye with all of you (this weekend’s pictures were just the beginning). You, the wonderful fandom who gave more love, support and passion than anyone could have ever imagined seven years ago, when a young Degrassi girl from Canada showed up in LA to audition for ‘that Twilight TV show.’ 😉 I love you all. Fasten your seatbelts. If you think you know what’s coming, you don’t.”

The news devastated me to a degree, because I caught onto “The Vampire Diaries” late in the game, in the middle of its second season. This was the first series where I literally binge watched the first season.  I thought season four might have been one of the best in the entire series. I was a bit frustrated with season five, and season six hasn’t had the clear direction in my opinion.

This year series regular Steven R. McQueen departed from the series, and news has also surfaced that Michael Trevino is making plans to leave the series also. So can a show with such a major following survive without Elena Gilbert, yes, but it’s going to be quite hard to do. If it was Paul Wesley or Ian Somerhalder departing the series, it probably could still work, but Elena has been the central core of the series since the beginning in my opinion.

Elena leaving the canvas puts both Damon and Stefan in a peculiar situation; who will they protect now that the one true love for both of them is no longer present? Some could argue Caroline, but she’s no Elena people, no matter how hard the writers try to convince us that she is. Major series have tackled killing off central characters and survived; I mean look at what “Games of Thornes” did in its first season, but it doesn’t always work.

It’s like “How to Get Away With Murder” without Viola Davis, or “Pretty Little Liars” without one of the liars. Unless eliminating a star player propels the narrative in a way that stuns the audience, losing a core character can be the death of series. While most of us have no idea what direction the series is taking to say goodbye to Elena Gilbert, I’m suspecting that that cure Damon has could play a vital role. If a character is leaving the show and not planning to return, I can only see Elena departing in glorious fashion, but we never know. “The Vampire Diaries” airs Thursdays on The CW Network.