We’ve waited long enough. The Vampire Diaries may have introduced the shocking relationship between Bonnie (Kat Graham) and Enzo (Michael Malarkey) back in the fall, but The CW series has yet to pay off that twist by actually telling the story of how the two former enemies fell in love. Until tonight, that is—and what timing, considering Graham’s recent announcement that season eight of The Vampire Diaries will be her last on the show.
An announcement her on-screen paramour was not unaware of until we told him during our interview!
“I didn’t even know that, so no idea,” Malarkey said with a laugh. “I’ve been away on holiday so I have no idea. I just know that I’m excited about next season and we’ll see where that all ends up.”
And in tonight’s game-changing episode, “Somebody That I Used to Know,” we will finally learn how Bonnie and Enzo fell in love against all odds.
“I’ve been really, really busy in the back end of the season which has been fun,” Malarkey told Nerdist. “This particular episode coming up, I was shooting every day. Some days, I was in pretty much every single scene. It was cool. It was nice to have a bit of extra work and to be able to flex my muscles. [Laughs] You don’t have to laugh. Don’t encourage me or anything.”
Back when we first learned that Enzo and Bonnie were an item, it was pretty shocking and out of the blue for the fans. As the answers roll in, the duo’s love story will largely play out in flashbacks to the past while Enzo tries to save Bonnie’s life in the present.
“He finds out that the Armory wants her for some reason and so, since he has kind of a soft spot for her—and he doesn’t trust their motives—he whisks her away and keeps her hidden,” Malarkey said. “It starts off as this weird captor/captive type thing, and there’s this feistiness to it. She starts to think, ‘He obviously seems like he’s looking out for me,’ but Enzo’s playing the double agent at the same time. He’s pretending to work for the Armory but at the same time he’s keeping Bonnie from the Armory. It starts out when they’re definitely not in love, but there’s this feisty sexual tension undercurrent throughout those first scenes and we see how it culminates from there.”
Now that Enzo knows the pills he’s been giving Bonnie from the Armory are actually making her sick, he’ll do whatever it takes to save her life.
“This is huge. This is Shakespearean,” Malarkey explained. “He’s realized that he’s been poisoning the love of his life or the first love he’s ever had really, so he’s going to do whatever he can to prevent her from dying, including reluctantly teaming up with Damon [Ian Somerhalder] and Rayna [Leslie-Ann Huff] in a roundabout way. We find out that Rayna understands something about those pills, and if we can help kill the vampires escaped from the Phoenix Stone, she can potentially help Bonnie. We all team up and go on this quest to kill all these vampires.”
Damon is also pretty desperate to repair his relationship with Bonnie, so does that mean things will change between him and Enzo?
“It’s tough because Enzo knows he needs Damon to help carry out this task,” said Malarkey. “Also, Enzo ultimately helped Bonnie get over the fact that her best friend abandoned her, so Damon’s been this presence within their relationship the past three years. It’s almost like an ex-boyfriend. So when he turns up in the picture, for Enzo, it almost feels like they have this old relationship that he’s now a part of all that too. It’s a tough situation and there’s a lot of subtext going on in all these scenes with that in mind, but at the same time, Enzo’s very much a doer and very task-oriented. He’s going to do whatever he can to make things happen—including biting his tongue and swallowing his pride and just getting the job done. Once we see what happens with all this stuff, then we can pick up the pieces and figure out where everybody stands. That’s his mentality.”
But don’t expect Enzo to get jealous of the bond Bonnie shares with Damon.
“I think he feels like what he has with Bonnie is so strong. The fans may not understand that yet, but you’ll see it in this episode,” Malarkey says. “It’s quite touching. The thing about their relationship is Enzo really brings out that feistiness in Bonnie, that fire that we all know she has, and she really brings out the compassion in Enzo. They are really good for each other, they balance each other out in a good way. Enzo feels like what they have is very strong so he doesn’t feel like it’s a direct threat. He doesn’t feel like Damon’s the kind of guy who would swoop in and mess with that. If he sees Bonnie happy, he’s not going to try to mess with her head about it.”
So, does Graham leaving mess with Malarkey’s head about the future of the series?
“You know what, whatever is best for the show and whatever the writers and producers want to do is going to be the right thing,” he explained. “As long as everyone’s excited about it and still working hard and has the spark, then hell yeah, let’s keep going as long as they can make it work.”
Are you excited to finally learn how Benzo got its start? What do you think of Enzo’s story in the back half of this season? Tweet me your thoughts at @SydneyBucksbaum!
Images: The CW
The Vampire Diaries airs Fridays at 8 p.m. on The CW.