The "Vampire Diaries" season finale set the bar high for all other shows, and now their season premiere has done the very same thing. The show reset 20 seconds and added some dialogue, but picked up right where season 1 left off, with the introduction of Elena's fanged doppelganger Katherine. From the start of this season Katerina's character Bonnie had to go head-to-head with the she-beast. And while she came up short, actress Kat Graham tells PopWrap that it won't be that way for long.
Here's Katerina's~Bonnie's reaction to the season premiere's events, what Caroline's "death" means for the rest of season 2 and why episode 6 is another game changer!
PopWrap: One of my favorite scenes was the Bonnie/Katherine showdown in The Lockwood mansion -- what's it like being given this new villain to work with?
Kat Graham: I am loving it – I can definitely tell the difference [when Nina Dobrev is playing] Elena versus Katherine. She changes her whole vibe, it’s really awesome. Plus, Katherine is the first female character that’s really challenged Bonnie, up until now it’s mostly been Damon. So she’s kind of like the female Damon and I love having to play opposite that.
PW: And now you get to tussle with Nina.
Kat: Oh yea, it’s real fun – I always call Nina "our little Indiana Jones" because she always does her own stunts. She’s kind of tomboyish in that way, which I love. So I expected her to go full throttle. I’m a strong person, but Nina is a full fledged secret agent [laughs].
PW: Where do you see Bonnie going this season?
Kat: I definitely think she’s kind of being slowly put in a protector position. The go-to person to get stuff done that the vampires can’t do. Everything from finding out where people or things are to moving things with her mind. She’s got all these capabilities that these other characters will need, so she’s becoming the protector.
PW: And I would imagine that she's still on her quest to grow stronger, magically?
Kat: Oh, constantly. Last season she didn’t want to use her powers too much, she was reluctant because she was so unsure about being this witchy juju. But now she’s not only fully accepted it, she has to use it to protect the people she loves. She’s not afraid and way more powerful than she was last year. Katherine is also really powerful, which will only make Bonnie try to progress harder and to figure out a way to stop her. Maybe she needs to do some more research into witchcraft instead of continuing to learn the hard way.
PW: Last night we saw Bonnie continuing to work with The Salvatore brothers despite her season finale declaration -- will that continue?
Kat: I hope so. As of right now, [they're filming episode 6] yes. She’s still getting dragged into making the decision between helping The Salvatore’s or not. She doesn’t want to help them but if it has to do with protecting Elena or Caroline or the mortals ... they’re her weak spot. That’s her family, so she can’t really say no to that – but she won’t stop trying to stop the vampires.
PW: On that tip, Bonnie was the one who told Damon to heal Caroline with his blood, so the fact she might now be a vampire lies squarely on her shoulders. How much guilt will we see Bonnie feeling next week?
Kat: There’s a lot of guilt there – she’s thinking, “if I had never done this, then none of this would have happened.” But she still blames Damon. She still blames Stefan. Bonnie knows that if they hadn’t come to town in the first place none of this would have happened. One friend would have still been alive, the other would still be normal and her grams wouldn't have died. There’s a guilt there and a sense of “I don’t want to deal with this” but simultaneously a need to fix it. At the bottom of her heart, she believes that the vampires are the reason this is all happening – and they are, darn it! [laughs]
PW: Tonight ended with a huge shocker -- Katherine killed Caroline, seemingly turning her into a vampire -- how much does the fallout from that change the direction of season two?
Kat: It affects it completely. When that happened, it altered anything me, Kat Graham, would have thought could happen in episode two. When I read the script, I was like “already? We’re already going there? What are we going to do for episode two?!?" But that’s just the genius of [creators] Kevin [Williamson] & Julie [Plec] – they can create these amazing storylines that completely capture you to the point where you have to watch next week. We’re shooting episode six right now and that moment is still affecting the storyline – it has a huge impact on all the characters and changes everything. Then you have this whole werewolf situation, there’s a lot going on, so you have to watch every episode and pay attention to everything.
PW: Out of the six, which episode, for you, had the biggest jaw dropping moment?
Kat: I definitely feel like Caroline's "death" in the first episode is one of the biggest shocks ... but the third episode is really nuts too. Something happens where the fate of a main character is left up in the air. Literally every episode has something that makes you fall off your couch and scream at the TV [laughs] it’s just that kind of show. In the third episode, Bonnie does something completely shocking. Four and five show a lot of Katherine and episode six is a huge turner as well – it changes the fate, again, of the rest of the season.