A spin-off of The Vampire Diaries might be unlikely right now due to Julie Plec being tied up with her Vampire Academy project (which is set to premiere on September 15). However, The Vampire Diaries, The Originals, and Legacies have produced hundreds of episodes for fans to watch, that, by the time they finish binge-watching them all again, there might be some TVDU news waiting for them on the other side.
While there are certainly enough interesting ideas the writers could pursue, one of the things that the writers might be best avoiding is another Elena vampire-central series as fans could never agree on whether they loved or hated Elena and whether they loved her more as a human or a vampire. Even though vampire Elena was pretty cool, human Elena sort of one-upped her a little due to several great deeds.
Elena Stabbed A Vampire
Human Elena was a lot more badass than anyone gives her credit for. At a time when she knew about the existence of vampires, Elena stabbed a vampire that was attacking her through the hand with a pencil.
Given how much strength is necessary to do that, because of all the tiny bones inside a hand, this is pretty impressive. What’s even more impressive is that Elena was overwhelmed by these supernatural beings that were so much stronger than her, and yet she never once gave up fighting against them.
Despite the onset of terrible things that happened to Elena, the worst was when Damon killed her brother in cold blood after she rejected him. Despite fans loving him and his character growth, he was one of the meanest characters in the early seasons.
And yet, somehow, her compassion allowed her to forgive Damon, and even tell him as much. Forgiving can be one of the hardest things one can do, and even without supernatural abilities, this was one strength she possessed even before turning into a vampire.
She Saved Stefan
When they were holding Stefan hostage and torturing him inside a house that was full to the brink of vampires, Elena didn’t hesitate to join the rescue mission. Even though Damon told her to stay in the car, she tagged along and even got Stefan into the car.
Not only was this brave, but it also goes to show how much Elena is willing to risk for the people she loves. There isn’t a thing she would do to help a loved one, even though she’s so much more vulnerable than most of them.
She Saved Damon
One could argue that the biggest way Elena saved Damon was simply by loving him. However, there was a way in which she saved him much earlier than she ever fell in love with him.
When Damon took her on his Georgia trip, Lexi’s boyfriend decided to get his revenge by killing Damon. Elena argued with him, eventually convincing him that he stop. She used her compassion to argue why he shouldn’t kill Damon and did that without flinching in the face of danger.
Rose's death was one of the most heartbreaking deaths on the show. When she was bitten by a werewolf and was dying, Elena was helping take care of her. During one of those moments, Rose was hallucinating and confused Elena for Katherine and attacked her.
Even against a much stronger vampire, Elena held her own in the fight. She used the things she could, like the sun exposure and Rose’s werewolf bite to fight her off and then hid in one of the rooms. Given the fact that Elena was human, this was even more legendary than taking on Katherine in season 4.
Went Against The Originals (And Won)
In seasons 2 and 3 of The Vampire Diaries, the original vampire family is one of the villainous presences. Though these are essentially very horrifying and dangerous beings, and as proven by Klaus and Elijah have little to no morals, she gets her way with them more than once.
The fact that Elena knows what Klaus and Elijah are capable of and still dares to negotiate deals with them and even successfully manipulate them, is astonishing.
Hurt Herself To Get Her Way
It is very clear from the beginning of the show that Elena is overwhelmed with feelings of survival guilt and grief. She shows no regard for her own personal safety and well-being and often gets hurt because of it.
This can be seen when Elena stabs herself to manipulate Elijah, and later in the show, even cuts her throat to create the enhanced original vampire – Alaric. She also continuously sacrifices herself and puts herself in danger for her friends and loved ones.
Although Caroline and Elena’s friendship arguably has some weak spots, they protected each other often. When Damon tried to stake Caroline and kill her, Elena didn’t hesitate to step between them.
She positioned herself directly between Damon and Caroline, essentially shielding her friend with her body, which was a lot more vulnerable than Caroline's and Stefan's. Elena was also less strong than everyone else, but she was the one who protected Caroline, not Stefan who was faster.
One of the greatest moments of human Elena on the show was when she got tired of being pushed over by vampires and other supernatural beings. With Damon and Alaric’s help, she trained to become stronger and more equipped for the battles she kept fighting.
Acknowledging her disadvantage was smart and by doing something about she actively refused the victim role that the fandom kept trying to assign to her. While many fans wanted her to stay a vampire, she was already a great character as a human.
Sacrificed Herself To Save Her Friends
The number of times Elena voluntarily tried to give up her life to save her friends was uncountable. She sacrificed herself to Klaus, so her friends wouldn’t get hurt, and she became a vampire because she told Stefan to save Matt, which some think was one of her worst decisions.
Many times Elena gets spoken of as a spineless whiny character, but she fought to have agency in her decisions (that the Salvatore brothers often took away). That’s the kind of person she was – the kind that would die to save the people she loved.