Matt Donovan may be the most unlucky kid in a town full of unlucky kids, but all these years later, he’s still our favorite — and this season, things might be looking up for the quarterback-slash-busboy. That is, as long as he can get over the overwhelming feelings of guilt he’s experiencing after Elena sacrificed her own life to save his.
In last week’s season premiere, Matt practically begged Stefan to let him die, and we can’t really blame him. For a kid who’s just trying to make enough money to keep the lights on in his house, his first love’s transition into a vampire is beyond the just-deal-with-it realm. Now, with the added burden of Elena’s “death” weighing on him, he’s feeling particularly despondent and useless.
Hopefully, though, the combination of last week’s tough-love pep talk from Stefan and a touching moment of unexpected heroism in tonight’s episode, “Memorial,” will get Matt back on his feet. “Memorial” will allow Matt, and the rest of the gang, a moment to grieve what they’ve lost, and it’s well-earned after a few hellish semesters. In the meantime, though, Matt probably owes Stefan a thank-you.
“That’s an interesting question, how much does Matt owe Stefan,” Zach says. “I don’t know if it’s a question of whether he owes Stefan, or if he just owes Elena. I think that’s going to be Matt’s biggest struggle, starting off the season. Just the guilt, and why him, why would Stefan — even if Elena did want it — ever listen to [her].”
Damon definitely held it against Matt in the season premiere, but he eases up on the QB a bit by episode two. That said, they’re not about to embark on an epic bromance any time soon. “Damon and Matt have never really seen eye-to-eye,” Zach says. “This just puts the cherry on it, although I think they’d make a good little team.”
Don’t hold your breath for that one, kids.
Ever since breaking up with Caroline (apparently, for Matt, fangs are a turn-off) he’s had a heck of a dry spell in the romance department… but it’s hard to ignore the undeniable sparks that flew between him and Rebekah last season. You know, before she ran him off a bridge, destroyed his truck, and left him and one of his best friends to drown. Oops?
“Rebekah and Matt have been a little bit … hot and cold,” Zach says. “I think you can expect to see Rebekah trying to kind of clean things up with Matt and get him to forgive her. ‘I got upset. My bad, I tried to kill you. But you survived! So now we can flirt again!’ I feel like it’s going to continue to be the same dance, though, because at the end of the day, in some weird way, Matt can wrap his head around why Rebekah would do that.”
While we were on set, we watched Zach filming some sweet scenes with Grace Phipps, who plays Mystic Falls newbie April Young. While April may have eyes for Matt, though, Zach tells us that Matt views her more as a little sister than a potential love interest. (We’ll see about that!)
Of course, we had to ask Zach how things are going on set without his buddy Matt Davis around — since we’ve certainly been missing Alaric’s incomparable presence on screen now that Davis is filming his new show “Cult” in Vancouver.
“I’m going to cry right now,” Zach jokes. “I don’t really care… No, I miss him a lot. I miss you, buddy! Of course we miss him, but I’m also super proud of him. He’s kicking butt and taking names up there. You know we talk all the time. He’s doing exactly what he’s supposed to be doing.”
Don’t miss “Memorial” (which is one of the best “Vampire Diaries” episodes we’ve seen) tonight, Thursday Oct. 18, at 8 p.m. EST on The CW. In the meantime, check out the rest of our interview with Zach below (including his continued campaign for a Liz Forbes hookup, and some very serious conversation about those Mystic Grill t-shirts). And keep clicking around on Zap2it. We’ve got lots more fun “TVD” content coming your way before and after the episode airs tonight.