This article is about Matt Donovan, a character from the television series. You may be looking for Matt Honeycutt, a character from the novel series.
I've hurt people for the wrong reasons too, but that feeling in your gut, that voice telling you to hate yourself for what you did, that's not a bad thing. That means you're a good person.

Matthew G. "Matt" Donovan is a main character on The Vampire Diaries and a guest character in the third season of The Originals. He is the son of Kelly Donovan and Peter Maxwell. He had an older sister Vicki Donovan, who was turned into a vampire, and was later killed because she was unable to control her blood lust. Matt is also the ex-boyfriend of Elena Gilbert, Caroline Forbes and Rebekah Mikaelson and ex-fiancée of Penny Ares.

He was born and raised in the town of Mystic Falls. After the death of Elena's parents, Elena broke up with Matt because she lost interest in him, although Matt still cares about Elena deeply and they've managed to maintain a good friendship. At the beginning of the series, Matt struggles with his sister, Vicki, because she was a drug user, but then she tragically dies. Later on he begins dating Caroline Forbes, and encourages her to become a more caring, kind and selfless young woman. However, Caroline soon breaks up with him after her transition into a vampire - in order to protect him.

Upon learning about the existence of supernatural creatures, he begins to distance himself from the Mystic Falls Gang, but eventually starts to help his friends defeat enemies that cause terror in their hometown, and also fixes his friendship with Caroline. He also becomes a Medium for a short while like Jeremy Gilbert, although he could only see his sister's ghost. He began a brief relationship with Rebekah Mikaelson, and went to Europe with her at the end of Season Four, but they ended things before she had left Mystic Falls.

In Season Five, he was possessed by a Traveler for a brief time, and was also involved with Nadia Petrova, Katherine's daughter. Nadia later compelled him to forget that Elena was possessed by Katherine. After Nadia's death, Matt help his friends deals with the destruction of The Other Side, with help from the witch twins - Olivia and Lucas Parker.

Later on, he decide to become a deputy in Mystic Falls Police Department, and a vampire hunter.

After Elena Gilbert falls into a magical, coma-like slumber being Kai Parker links her to Bonnie Bennett, Matt is forced to step up his game and eventually becomes the sheriff of Mystic Falls. During this time, Matt kicks out all vampires from the newly-human populated Mystic Falls.

He later falls in love with his partner, Penny Ares. After Penny's death, Matt is set on getting revenge on the vampire who made Matt impulsively, but accidentally kill Penny. Matt is hellbent on getting his revenge on Stefan Salvatore for being involved in Penny's death. However, after a series of events that forces Matt to try and save Bonnie from being a bloodthirsty Supernatural Huntress, Matt is done fighting the war between humans and vampires. Matt decides to leave Mystic Falls and start a normal life outside the world of vampires.

After Matt's exit from Mystic Falls, he went to look for his estranged father, Peter, and told him nothing of the supernatural creatures he had to deal with for the last seven years of his life.

He is best friends with Jeremy Gilbert, Tyler Lockwood, Elena Gilbert, and Bonnie Bennett. He is also close friends with Caroline Forbes.

Matt is a member of the Donovan Family.

Early History


Young Matt with Vicki

Matt was born in Mystic Falls. He is the son of Kelly Donovan and Peter Maxwell. He had an older sister, Vicki Donovan. Because Kelly and Miranda Gilbert, who was Elena's adoptive mother, were best friends since high school, Matt knew Elena since infancy, occasionally sharing a crib. They grew up together, being really close childhood friends, and began dating in their teenage years feeling they owed it to themselves to try. When Elena's parents died, she broke up with Matt because she needed time alone to figure out her feelings. Matt still hoped they could be together, but it was not likely to happen due to Elena's instant connection to the new student, Stefan Salvatore. It's something he might still mourn about.

Throughout The Vampire Diaries Series

Throughout The Originals Series


"Because you're everything that I want to be. You're loyal, honest, kind. People root for you to succeed. Elena even died for you."
Rebekah to Matt in "Pictures of You"

Matt is everyone's definition of the "everyday man". Out of the characters, he is the most "normal"; he does not possess any supernatural attribute, nor any supernatural artifact that makes him stand out of the rest of humanity and he wants it to stay that way (at least until he was given the Gilbert Ring previously worn by Jeremy). He is, however, aware of the supernatural world and has more than had his fair share of skirmishes with them in the past.

Matt is often seen by some people as a person who only cares about the sport, however, he is just the opposite, Matt is strong because he wants to protect his family and friends from the dangers that threaten them every day.

As far as personality goes, Matt is loyal, headstrong, and down-to-earth. According to Vicki, Matt is the "golden child" of their family, with a good future ahead of him. These qualities make it very hard for other characters not to like him, and he has captured the hearts of several females throughout the series. However, as the years have passed and he's lost more friends, Matt has become colder and even ruthless to a degree, as he has willingly tortured and hurt Damon and Stefan on several occasions.

Physical Appearance

MattRoerig s4

S4 Matt Donovan

Main article: Matt Donovan/Appearance

Matt is a very handsome young man, who stands at approximately 6 feet tall with baby blue eyes and short dark blonde hair. He has an attractive face and can be considered as the stereotypical football player in regards to his personality and physical looks.

Matt's hairstyle over the seasons has remained similar, shortened with not much length except his hair was somewhat longer in the first season. On special occasions, Matt has been shown to gel his hair such as for the 60's Decade Dance, for a more formal style.

His clothing sense is that of a typical teenager, for school as he played football, he used to wear the school Timberwolves jacket however usually wore a range of different colored t-shirts and jeans with boots or sneaker shoes. Lately, he has been wearing checkered button-down shirts with a t-shirt underneath or shirts with an unbuttoned collar. He also wears a heavy jacket with hoods or light weight jackets, both of which are usually a darkened color. Working at the Grill, Matt has a uniform which consists of a dark blue t-shirt and black trousers. On occasions, he regularly wears a dark tuxedo and trousers with a tie.


Vicki Donovan

"Matt, I love you.. but I'm already dead."
—Vicki to Matt in Resident Evil
Main article: Matt and Vicki
TVD 1074

Matt and Vicki

Vicki is Matt's older sister, although it often seemed like the other way around since Matt was the one looking after Vicki, due to their mother not being around. Vicki started to act erratically after she turned into a vampire, which made Matt think she was on drugs. After Vicki's death, Matt believed that she had run away, until her body was found. In season three, Matt was able to see Vicki after Esther performed a spell and tried to bring her back, but he had to learn to accept her death. When Matt temporarily died in season five, he saw Vicki and tried to keep hold of her, but she reminded him that she was already dead and let go.

Tyler Lockwood

"I'm glad you pulled it together. The thing is, Ty, I get it, alright? We've all been through so much that it's bound to make us a little crazy. But I was thinking, you know, watching the way all those cops honored her today, I want to be a part of something like that. So I talked to one of the deputies, and he gave me an application. There's this, uh, officer training program. Seems pretty cool, you know, like something I'm supposed to be a part of. I got one for you too."
—Matt to Tyler in Let Her Go
Main article: Tyler and Matt

Tyler and Matt

Matt and Tyler are best friends, and have known each other for a long time. They were both on the football team, and they both also fell in love with Caroline, which strained their friendship for a while. In season six, Matt decides to join the police academy, and gets Tyler to join him.

However, due to circumstances thanks to Kai Parker's influence during Season Six, Matt and Tyler were forced to say goodbye to each other temporarily while Tyler figured out his newfound werewolf life. Also, Matt moved up in the ranks of law enforcement due to the rising supernatural occurrences in Mystic Falls. They still remain close friends however.

Elena Gilbert

"That's my hope for you, Matt. In our crazy lives together, you've always stayed the same. Human, loyal, and good. My hope is that you spend the rest of your life fighting for people like you."
—Elena to Matt in I'm Thinking Of You All The While
Main article: Elena and Matt
Matt and elena 622

Matt and Elena

Elena and Matt had a relationship throughout most of high school, but she had broken up with him after her parent's deaths. At first, it was evident that he still loved her and was jealous of her new relationship with Stefan Salvatore, but they remained good friends throughout the rest of the series. When Rebekah drove Elena and Matt off of Wickery Bridge, she had Stefan save him before herself. When Elena lost her humanity, Matt was the person who had flipped her switch after Damon had snapped his neck while he was wearing the Gilbert ring. When Matt said his goodbye to Elena after she was put into a sleeping coma, she told him that she hopes he spends his life fighting for people like himself: human, loyal, and kind.

Caroline Forbes

"It means almost died and it really freaked me out and it got me thinking you know 'cause... I'm not in a position where I can lose someone else right now. I realized, even though today I wanted to throttle you, I'm pretty sure that I'm in love with you and now it seems like you don't feel the same way."
—Matt to Caroline in Brave New World
Main article: Caroline and Matt

Matt and Caroline

Matt and Caroline have known each other since first grade. At first, he didn't like her very much, but they began to grow closer and started a romantic relationship. Their relationship was strained due to Caroline's frequent jealousy over Elena due to her and Matt's history. They start to drift apart after Caroline becomes a vampire, and also after she starts getting closer to his best friend, Tyler. They break up, and although they aren't together anymore, they still remain good friends.

Rebekah Mikaelson

"Fine. Okay. The first rule of truly living: do the thing you're most afraid of."
—Rebekah to Matt in Graduation
Main article: Matt and Rebekah

Matt and Rebekah

Matt and Rebekah's relationship was strained at first, especially after Rebekah drove him and Elena off of Wickery Bridge, killing Elena and almost killing Matt. She makes several attempts to make amends with Matt, but he's cold towards her. At Prom, she dances with Matt and tells him that she wants to be everything that he is, which is beautifully human. She tries to be a better person and continually tries to prove it to Matt. After they are in a dangerous predicament with Alexander, Rebekah takes Matt's place on the trigger that sets off explosives. She kisses him and tells him to run so he won't miss graduation. She vamp speeds away, and the bomb detonates, but neither of them are hurt. She then goes off with Matt, and they spend 3 months traveling together before she joins her brother in New Orleans.

Other Relationships

Donovan Family, Mystic Falls Gang, Mystic Falls High School, Mystic Grill, Mystic Falls Police Station


Season One

Season Two

Season Three

Season Four

Season Five

Season Six

Season Seven

Season Eight

The Originals Season One

The Originals Season Three

Episode Absence

Season One

Season Two

Season Three

Season Four

Season Five

Season Six

Season Seven

Season Eight


In the novels, Matt's surname is Honeycutt, not "Donovan", and like the series, he is Elena's ex-boyfriend. Vicki is also not his sister in the novels. Matt Honeycutt's father is dead and his mother is only briefly mentioned and is completely dissimilar to Kelly Donovan.


  • Matt is a masculine name of Hebrew origin. It is from the Hebrew מַתִּתְיָהוּ (Mattiyahu) which means "Gift of Yaweh". Matt is a variation or short form for Matthew. In the English meaning, it means "Gift of God".
  • Donovan is an anglicized form of the Gaelic Ó Donndubháin.


  • Elena's former boyfriend, hasn't given up hope yet - which makes him a Dogged Nice Guy .
  • He is pretty much a Generic Guy , with no special qualities - except being human .
  • Of course, he just wants his beloved to be happy , so he forgives Elena for ditching him and tries to be friends with Stefan.
  • His life sucks most of the times: We don't even know if he knew his father ;his mother is an Alcoholic who left him for a boyfriend in Florida; his sister Vicki was a drug addict who got turned into a Vampire by Damon because he was bored then staked by Stefan. Ah, and Vicki came back as a ghost. She was persuaded by Esther to try and kill Elena!
  • Like most of the main cast, he even died once. But he was revived.
  • By Season Four he is the only one in the cast member to remain human, so he is the Token Human, which in this case is also a Token Minority.
  • He's often called as The Quarterback, or Matty (Which he is affectionately called by Vicki).
  • He's Rebekah's Morality Pet
  • With April and Meredith he is part of Team Normal - the humans without powers that help the super-powered heroes.


  • Matt's birthday is February 26, making him a Pisces.
  • So far, Matt has died five times in the series.
    • His first death occurred in The Reckoning. He drowned himself to communicate with his sister Vicki. Bonnie revived him with CPR.
    • His second death occurred in She's Come Undone. Damon snapped his neck to turn Elena's humanity on. The Gilbert Ring resurrected him.
    • His third death occurred in True Lies. Silas snapped his neck, because he couldn't control him since he was already possessed by The Travelers.
    • His fourth death occurred in Resident Evil by a traveller possessing Liz. He was stabbed in the neck.
    • His fifth death occurred in Never Let Me Go when Bonnie used magic to stop his heart so Damon and Stefan could enter the Salvatore Boarding House to rescue Caroline. He was compelled to sign the deed of the house to become the owner and with his temporary death, the house had no owner until Lucy, the Heretics' maid signed the deed to become the new owner.
    • Matt's first death was "natural" in contrast with his second death caused by "supernatural" causes. This is similar to the character of Buffy Summers who has also died twice. Like Matt, she was drowned causing her first death while her second death was also supernatural: she was killed by mystical energy.
  • In the books, Matt's surname is Honeycutt, but in the TV series, his surname is Donovan.
  • In the books, Matt learns that Stefan and Damon are vampires and that Elena has become a vampire and needs blood.
  • Matt was almost killed by two of his ex-girlfriends after they've been turned into vampires, the first being Caroline in Bad Moon Rising and Elena in The Rager.
  • In the series, Matt is aware of four people he knows turned into vampires, werewolf and a hybrid: Vicki, Caroline, Tyler (werewolf/hybrid) and Elena.
  • In the series, Matt was the second-to-last main character to learn about the supernatural world (before Jenna) and he is the last character to have learned this to be still alive since Jenna died one episode after.
  • Matt is not the brother of Vickie Bennett in the books. In the television series, he is Vicki's brother and takes care of Vicki and his mother Kelly .
  • In the books, Matt becomes Stefan's best friend, but in the series, Matt is best friends with Tyler Lockwood and Jeremy Gilbert.
  • In the series, he often shortens people's names, as well as Damon, but with nicknames -
    • Vicki "Vick"
    • Tyler "Ty"
    • Jeremy "Jer"
    • Caroline "Care"
    • Bonnie "Bon"
  • Kevin Williamson commented on the character Matt, saying "There's a door there, that we will eventually open, but for now he's human."
  • Although Matt's feelings for Elena are a major recurring theme in the first season, they have seemed to have completely vanished to make way for his new feelings for Caroline, which become a major plotline in the second season particularly since Caroline is now a vampire. However, in the books, Matt's feelings for Elena never seem to go away and play an even stronger role since he still has feelings for her when he discovers the existence of the supernatural world.
  • Matt was the first main character who destroyed an Original (Finn) without neutralizing it. (The Murder of One).
  • Matt is one of three main characters that has killed an Original. The other two are Niklaus and Jeremy.
  • In the books, he and Damon interact more often than in the TV series.
  • Although Vicki was a grade above Matt, she isn't quite a year older then him.
  • He and Jeremy are indirectly responsible for Elena becoming a vampire.
  • Before "Graduation", Matt had never set one foot out of Mystic Falls.
    • This changed when he and Rebekah took a summer trip around Europe.
  • Matt is the first main character to be possessed by someone through Traveler magic, the Passenger spell.
  • Matt is the first and only character shown to be immune to Silas' mind control, however this is due to him being possessed by Gregor at the time, the presence of another individual inside his mind prevented Silas from controlling him.
  • In No Exit, Katherine insists that Nadia kill Matt, but Nadia decides not to comply.
  • Matt is the first non-supernatural character who has shown to have been The other side when killed by supernatural entities while wearing the a Gilbert Ring.  He is also the first non-supernatural character who passed through Bonnie upon death.  After his third death wearing a Gilbert Ring in Resident Evil, Matt became the first wearer of Gilbert Ring to retain his memory or experience from the other side .
  • Matt is similar to Damon in respect of their relationships with women.
  • After seven seasons of The Vampire Diaries, Matt remains the only main human character.
  • It was revealed that Matt could bench press more than Jeremy.
  • Who can speak a language Matt Donovan can understand? The Maytag Man can. Eureka star Colin Ferguson, most recently seen as pitchman for Maytag, appears in the premiere as Tripp, leader of a local watch group that gives Matt something to do with his time, what with the absence of immediate threats on his life."He came about because we wanted to show Matt thriving in Mystic Falls without supernaturals," Dries said of Ferguson's character. "Every episode Matt is having his life in jeopardy or somebody's threatening to kill him or something. So it's like, 'What's Matt's life like when he can just not have to have a death threat every five minutes.' We kinda wanted to give him a father figure-type, coach kinda guy, so that's where Trip came out of. But it's Mystic Falls, The Vampire Diaries, not everyone is who they say they wanna be, but he'll ultimately become kinda an interesting, layered dynamic character that's not necessarily a good guy or a bad guy. He actually represents I think like a normal person if you're not in love with Damon or Stefan, like a normal person's point-of-view on the whole vampire world."
  • Matt is the only main character whose father is unknown.


"I would write... Dear Diary"

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See also

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