'The Vampire Diaries' premiere: Steven R. McQueen on Jeremy's life and death

tvd-steven-r-mcqueen-320.jpg "The Vampire Diaries" Season 1 finale left off with Jeremy ( Steven R. McQueen) in a very precarious position -- and all summer, we didn't know if he was going to wake up dead or alive.

Well, you didn't know. We did. While Zap2it was on the set we got the inside scoop on Jeremy's death... life... and death again. Now that you've all seen the phenomenal Season 2 premiere, you know that Jeremy survives, but not without a couple of very near death experiences.

"Jeremy started out very innocent, very opened to feeling everything that was going on, but now he's in this hardened place where he's stopped caring as much," McQueen tells us.

After his thwarted sort-of-suicide, Jeremy is out of sorts, to say the least. "Jeremy feels like he's failed yet again," McQueen says. "He failed to protect Anna, he failed to protect Vicki, he even failed to remember what happened to Vicki. So when he fails to kill himself I think he's at a whole new low. At a certain point, when you're depressed for so long, you just stop caring. He's hit a wall."

Jeremy gets a second chance at death when, in a crime of passion, Damon snaps Jeremy's neck to get back at Elena for rejecting him. It's the latest on a long list of offenses between the two, but Jeremy might forgive Damon sooner than you think.

"When you lose your father you tend to look for male role models," McQueen says. "Though his legacy tells him he needs to hate them, the people Jeremy can relate to the most are these vampires, these broken people. When he sees Damon and even Stefan in a way, they're broken people who have more experience than him. He looks at them with caution but almost as a role model."

Luckily, Jeremy finally has a family heirloom that was probably rightfully his a long time ago. "He starts to accept the responsibilities that his family legacy has bestowed upon him, and he gets this ring which kind of throws him on the path of a vampire hunter," McQueen says. He'll be conflicted now between the part of him that wants to fulfill his family legacy and have a purpose, and the part of him that has loved and lost two vampire women.

Jeremy did confide in Elena a bit in "The Return," despite their relationship being on thin ice. "I think originally he was so mad at her and felt so betrayed, but at this point, Jeremy doesn't trust anyone. He's got such a chip on his shoulder that I don't think it's that big of a deal. I think him and Elena will become closer because that's one of the only people he has left. As for her betraying him, that's just what he expects from everybody at this point."



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Photo: CW