The Vampire Diaries' Damon Salvatore Wins TV's Ultimate Bad Boy Bracket Tournament

damon salvatoreThe final round of voting in TV’s Ultimate Bad Boy Bracket Tournament proved the old adage that every vote counts. Indeed, with nearly 600,000 ballots cast over the course of the competition, The Vampire Diaries‘ Damon Salvatore eked out a win over White Collar‘s Neal Caffrey by only 199 votes.

And while the good Mr. Caffrey provided Damon’s stiffest opposition from the 64-player, single-elimination competition, our eventual champ faced some other tough fights on the way to his crown.

RELATED | Who Is TV’s Ultimate Mean Girl? Let the Nominating Process Begin!

To make it to the end of the tourney, Damon swept to early wins over Russell Edgington and Eric Northman of True Blood, as well as Cole Turner of Charmed. After that, he took out Raylan Givens of Justified, and then his Semifinal opponent, Buffy the Vampire Slayer‘s Spike, snagging 52.4% of the vote.

Yes folks, Damon may be a bad boy, but clearly that’s a good thing to you.

If you’re interested in the match-ups that preceded our Finals, CLICK HERE TO CHECK OUT THE ENTIRE 64-PLAYER BRACKET (then click again for a zoomed-in view) — and for up-to-the-minute alerts on our next bracket (TV’s Ultimate Mean Girl) sign up to follow me on Twitter @MichaelSlezakTV.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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105 Comments
  1. Candy says:

    Yay Damon!

  2. GDV says:

    Boo! Should’ve been Spike!

  3. Beth Ann says:

    So glad that Damon won! I’ve never watched White Collar but Matt Bomer is a good actor so even if he had won it would’ve been cool. As for the people whining about Spike – sorry, nobody cares about Buffy anymore. Whedon is so overrated, it’s awful.

    • Sara says:

      Get out of the bitter barn and play in the hay.

      I’m glad Damon won but I’m also a Whedonite and not about to rub it in anybody’s face. People are allowed to wish for a different winner. Fyi. :)

    • Dominique says:

      Except for the fact of course that 10 years after some of Whedon’s shows ended, people are still talking about it, critics are still naming them one of the best shows ever made, and fans are still watching them.

    • Nat says:

      I’d really like to see if in 10 years’ time Damon gets anywhere near the top of these kinds of lists. No offence TVD fans, but the bias in these bracket tournaments for shows currently airing makes them weighted really unfairly. The fact that Spike made it to the semi-final is a real testament to his legacy and Whedon fans.

      • Gem says:

        Could not have said it better myself!

      • LastoftheTimeLords says:

        Honestly, without Joss Whedon, half the shows we have nowadays wouldn’t succeed. The way he wrote and the style dialogue he created and the chances he took have dramatically changed TV forever.

        And do you think Twilight or Vampire Diaries or True Blood books would have been written without Buffy making vampires mainstream?

        • Hyde says:

          Vampire Diaries books were written Pre-Buffy and pre-Sookie Stackhouse Series… by like 10 years. First TVD book came out in 1991.

          • Elyse says:

            exactly. people need to stop acting like Buffy was the only show ever made. Buffy WAS good but its over now.

        • Ruby says:

          I love Buffy, but that show did not invent the vampire. They “existed” long before and will long after.

    • Hey thanks Beth Ann for letting all of us know what we do or do not like. YOUR opinion is overrated.

    • Lauren says:

      I think we need to redo this poll in ten years. People will be saying ‘Damon who?’

  4. Sara says:

    Definitely should have been Spike BUT I’m happy for Damon! My two favourite vampires!

  5. Jane says:

    No surprises here. Pleased as punch.

  6. Rrrrrr says:

    I still can’t believe Damon beat Eric… wtf world

  7. Sal says:

    You got to be kidding me.

  8. Gwendolyn says:

    He’s my ultimate everything!!!!!!

  9. Mikaylah says:

    Disappointed, big time. I think Damon is highly over-rated. But alas, his fans are quite zealous.

    • Manie says:

      AMEN! Damon has been a softy over the last year and won because it’s Ian S. playing him and not because it’s Damon Salvatore. I love Damon, but many others should have won before him.

      • Kendra says:

        As if someone else were to play any one of these character that they’d have the same spark the original actors bring to them. The actors are the ones that bring these characters to life so yes Ian is a big proponent to that.

        • Steph says:

          Totally agree with you. The actor is a HUGE part of the character. The actor is what really makes us like them.

  10. Shannon Maguire says:

    HAHAHA all the people hating on ian SICKEN

    • Beth Ann says:

      All the “Spike” people are just livid – it’s wonderful!

      • I’m more an Angel fan than a Spike fan, but that isn’t the reason I’m disappointed with Ian winning. I really don’t like the CHARACTER people were suppose to be voting for. People can’t seem to separate actor from character. I think there were a lot more deserving characters in this bracket.

        • alyssa says:

          THIS. I absolutely ADORE Ian Somerhalder, and I do casually enjoy TVD, but compared to so many of the other bad boy characters in this bracket, Damon not only didn’t match up, but I don’t think he has been around long enough to have established a persona in pop culture.

          And I am an Angel fan over Spike as well. Angel/Angelus (yes even the evil version) has had my heart for the past 15 years of my life.

  11. Tricia says:

    Too pretty.

  12. Divine says:

    WoW!!! DaMoN…COOL!!!….i’m your number 1 fan DaMoN!!!

  13. Liz says:

    I’m sure it had nothing to do with spam-bots/teenagers home for the summer with nothing else to do

    The day the vampire craze is officially over will be a happy one

    • katy917 says:

      Alas, that day will probably never come! I have recently had to write an essay for my degree entitled why won’t the vampire lie down, tracing the history of the vampire back 200 years and the craze is still going strong, and never really died out!!! :s

    • z says:

      Liz- you can only vote once per poll, so no, no spam-bots.

    • DP says:

      How about if you stop judging the fanbase and acting like you know what’s going on. I’m an adult fan of TVD and there are sooooo many others. Be happy for who won instead of feeling the need to bash just because your pick didn’t win. It’s very childish. That goes for the rest of you too! grow up! Ian Somerhalder is the hottest man on the planet,a good person and an incredible actor. he has alot of support from wide groups of people and he deserves to win. He is also taking over the world so get used to it.

  14. Wow. Even though I voted for Neal and hoped he would win, I’m glad that he put up a fair fight. 199 votes difference? That is still terrific and I’m glad Neal made it this far. Congrats to both Neal and Damon for making it into the finals! Both definitely deserve it

  15. Kara says:

    Are you kidding me this pansy vampire won over Spike and Eric? Well, good thing this is a popularity contest and not an actual match up. There’s more to being a fierce BAMF than eye “acting”.

    • Temis says:

      If this were a legit badass poll and not the Battle of the Fandoms, Walter White would have won it in a walk. but we all knew that all along, right?

  16. Soundstage says:

    TVD is one of the most over-rated shows. The acting and story lines minus the first season are mediocre at best. Also, Nina Dobrev needs to eat something. Talk around the town out in LA is that this season is the last…Apparently the actors are getting a little money hungry.

    • Jane says:

      There is no evidence this is going to be the last season. Lay off the body bashing. Nina Dobrev is a beautiful girl and again, there’s no evidence she’s anything less than healthy. A lot of people think The Vampire Diaries is an excellent show, though of course you’re allowed to disagree, since that’s a matter of opinion.

    • Ria Mincks says:

      The last statement you made is completely false..i know this for a fact..and there is no need to be nasty referring to nina’s weight (what does that have to do with this poll) and vampire diaries took most of the popularity awards at teen choice so popularity is higher than ever.

    • Sally says:

      The CW wouldn’t cancel their top rated show, even if quality drops significantly (like in season 3).

    • Kem says:

      There is no need to bring up Nina Dobrev’s weight especially in a poll about a character, not the actors of the show. She’s a beautiful and talented young lady who always speaks about staying healthy and fit. She’s not the type to starve herself at all.

      And trust me, as long as the show is doing well on the CW network – it will stay on the air.

    • Ariadne says:

      I find TVD underated.All the hate it receives is from staborn people that never gave it a shot because they think is another twilight.For me true blood is closer to the crapfest the twilight is,\.

      The acting is actually really good and when it come to acting i was taken by suprise when i saw such a good cast on a CW show.I mean whether is Joseph Morgan for hios teriffic portrayal of Klaus or Nina Dobrev being awesome playing 2 different characters the acting in this show is great.

      Whatever you said abou Nina was irrelevant and untrue so i will overlook this unfortunate comment!It makes obvious that you actually never watched TVD and you are here to hate on it because a TVD character won a character from your favorite show!

      Seriously you call TVD fans immature teen girls but it seems like people from all the other fandoms behave more as horny teens! What’s more i know many older women and men that watch the show and befoere you rush to call them gay …they have families!

      • Lisa says:

        I was completely with you up till that gay comment. That came off sounding kind of offensive.

        • Ariadne says:

          that was not my intention.I respects gays!

          • Lisa. says:

            I’m sure you do, but the way you phrased that- “before you rush to call them gay”- implies that gay is a pejorative term. And then the second half implied that you don’t think gay people have families… I’m sure you’re not a homophobe! Just be careful how the words come out.

    • Justsayin says:

      Actually Soundstage might be right. I have a friend to works in the accounting department for Warner and this individual said that they heard through the grapevine from an upper ex that
      Ian Somerhalder has a big ego and is basically a D*CK and that he smarted off to someone who carries a pretty big say at the CW. Apparently he almost got axed.

      • . says:

        this is such weak trolling that i’m embarrassed for you. i dont even think you tried at all tbqh.

      • Maria says:

        lol! They would never axe Ian somerhalder, There more likley was sweating it out .untill He sighned for 3 more years. The have a great Cast , but without Ian playing Damon that show would be doomed. Besides, The whole cast adores Ian and all have said at one Time or another, what a niece and terrific Guy and a fantastic Actor Ian is. He also works so hard all the Time on The IS Foundation.

  17. Dandy says:

    Damon is my favorite character and Ian my favorite actor! I’m so glad he won! <3

  18. Ashley says:

    I’m disappointed that Neal lost. Damon was certainly the only reason why I tuned in to TVD for as long as I did (maybe for 6-10 episodes of the first season), but I’d take Neal over him any time! Still, it was a good fight and I congratulate Damon’s portrayer, writers, and fans.

  19. Miranda says:

    I don’t care about TVD as a whole anymore (Season 3 really sucked)…. the only thing that keeps me watching is Damon/Ian! He is without a doubt the best Part of the Show! TVD would be nothing w/o him!

    I’m happy he won! Well deserved ;)

  20. wphantom says:

    Oh well… For me, the ultimate bad boy is Mr. Reese from Person of Interest. But I guess Damon is ok.

    • badwolflil says:

      IMO Person of Interest is the best show on television. I would probably still have voted for Damon (who is one of my favorite characters on television-though I love Reese, Spike, Givens…so MANY good characters) but it woulda been close. Congrats to Damon.

      • wphantom says:

        Person of Interest is a great show. Mr. Reese is SO badass, it’s incredible !
        I like TVD and Damon, but not as much. I was totally on for Spike, so disappointed he was eliminated !

  21. Kelly says:

    I’m just happy Damon finally won something, since nobody ever picks him on this show. Lmao

  22. Susy says:

    Yes!!!!! Damon rocks!!! I love Spike too, but Damon rules!

  23. Deena says:

    Would still take Neal Caffrey ANY DAY.

  24. Maryam says:

    Hell yeah!!!!! Go Damon!!!!!!

  25. Kem says:

    So glad that Damon won! I’ll just leave it at that.

  26. Ariadne says:

    1.Eric Northman sucks.True Blood sucks.
    2.I like Spike
    3.I loooooooooove Damon

    so i’m happy he won but i was happier when he demolished Eric than when he won the whole thing!

    As someone said “He is my ultimate everything”

  27. Claire says:

    Instead of complaining like a bitter butt that someone else should of won, YOU and your groups should of voted more. Simple. It happens every time :(
    I’m glad Damon won. Ian Somerhalder is a gem. He has me so invested in Damon, I can’t get enough of him. He is the draw card of TVD whether you want to admit it or not. Stefan and Elena can make it like a boring, done before Twilight copy, but DAMON makes it soo much more.

  28. A says:

    Wished that Dean had won.

  29. 阿童木33 says:

    Ian I love you Damon is perfect!
    Ps : 原谅我是中国人英语不太好 不过真的很喜欢你Damon!!!

  30. Thrack says:

    Love TVD, but the only reason Damon wins is because Spike been off the air for 10 years. This list is incomplete anyway, they forgot Vic Mackey from The Shield!

  31. Rachel says:

    Damon Salvatore is the best bad boy in the history of television. Ian Somerhalder plays him to perfection. I enjoyed Spike, and Eric is fun, but Damon is in a league of his own.

  32. chidi says:

    Yah!!!!hahahaha!!!!DAmon….al dem hatas i hate 2 say …i told yu so…ma meen z a reel bad boi…haha!!woooo!!

  33. Mandy says:

    No offence to Paul or Nina but the Vampire Diaries would suck without Damon! Fact! They should be grateful having Ian on the Show! Stefan wouldn’t stand a Chance against Spike etc.

    Well done! Go Damon ;)

    • Susy says:

      Once again,Mandy, I agree with you! TVD wouldn’t survive without Damon!!!
      Damon rules supreme on TV and in our hearts!

  34. Elyse says:

    Blah blah blah Spike lost blah blah blah. who cares? its a silly contest. TVD has more fans that read this site than Buffy. Get over it.

  35. :-)****** says:

    Wait the only reason True Blood probably sucks for you is that your mom and dad won’t let you watch it because your a tween.

  36. Diana says:

    Damon is one of the best characters on Tv right now. He acts what he thinks. He is in love, so he tries to be better but he just can’t.
    I just love him, and is not just becase of Ian, the writting is wanderful.
    Lets see what happend this next season, I can’t wait!!!

  37. Voter123 says:

    Yay damon won :-]

  38. Damonholic says:

    LMAO, please! XD
    Laughing hard in the faces of all the haters here.
    Your fave lost, our fave won. Get over it.

    And I personally don’t care who would win in 10 years time. We’re talking about NOW here. And right NOW it’s Damon Salvatore, END of STORY.
    In 10 years time will win who deserves to win at that point. Will it be Spike? Probably. I couldn’t me more proud of it, I loved Buffy and I kinda worship Wheadon. Will there be a poll where Spike will be against Damon? I’ll still vote for Damon, no regrets.
    BTW, take it easy people… it’s not Grammies. Chill out.

  39. Babybop says:

    I just started watching this show… so I can’t really judge. But I can say that Ian Somerhalder is the most beautiful man on earth… And if House couldn’t win, at least this guy won because DANG. He is HOT.

  40. Elly says:

    Somebody sabotaged the poll. I always suported Neal Caffrey, but I admit that there’s more bad boys even more bad. On tumblr everyone was saying for vote on Neal. I’m sure that Spike is more bad boy than Neal, but Damon shouldn’t win. Also, I consider Neal way more hot than Damon.
    ( sorry for my english)

    • Molly says:

      Nobody sabotaged the poll. I don’t think anybody really should care THAT much. I’m glad Damon won, and I loved a LOT of the characters in the competition, including Neal. And your English is pretty good!

  41. Temis says:

    Toldja so. And Dean would have been the guy Damon beat, if the White Collar folks hadn’t stuffed the ballot box. The relative prowess of various internet fandoms are obvious – TVD first, Supernatural second, White Collar isn’t even on the Mao.

  42. Jenna says:

    R u kidding???? Damon has spent 2 seasons either crying or acting like a puppy on a very short leash. I loved Damon in season 1, he was the toughest badass ever!!! Damon’s not badass anymore. He was replaced by Klaus and the Ripper!

  43. airhead says:

    Yay Damon!!! I would have been happy for some of the others to win as well, but I’m glad Damon won!
    And to all the people complaining he shouldn’t have won, it’s done now, so get over it and move on. This one tournament is not going to bring back your favourite shows or get your most hated ones taken off the air so just chill a little.

  44. Amy says:

    I love Damon but I still think that Eric should have won. Some of you if Damon wouldn’t had won you would have been bitching about it.

  45. TeamDelena4Ever says:

    Oh Yes!!! Tean Damon :D Ian is such an amazing actor XD

    He’s not only a bad boy, but he’s seriously deep and complicated! That’s why we love him! And he’s the sexiest man alive :D TVD wins everytime :D

  46. tanya says:

    Go damon!!

  47. Got Damon!!!! Team Damon 4ever!!!!

  48. Only a smiling visitant here to share the love (:, btw great design. “The price one pays for pursuing a profession, or calling, is an intimate knowledge of its ugly side.” by James Arthur Baldwin.