'The Vampire Diaries': Chris Wood On His Return As Kai

As Mike/Mon-El, Chris Wood is learning how to be an Earth superhero on The CW’s “Supergirl,” but this Friday night, he’s back in the shoes of the villainous Kai on “The Vampire Diaries.”

Kai was responsible for quite a lot of things when he was last featured on the show – he killed his twin sister, Jo, and took her power (during her wedding to Alaric!) and was responsible for the whole Elena sleep-state-that’s-tied-to-Bonnie-life thing.

With the show marching toward its series finale, Kai’s back, but in order to stay in the land of the living, he’s going to need Damon Salvatore’s help with a few things (including keeping Alaric from killing him for what he did to Jo). Chris told AccessHollywood.com more about Kai’s surprise return.

AccessHollywood.com: It’s fun to have you back on ‘The Vampire Diaries’ again. Did you get to break out some of the old flannels, the cool leather jacket that you used to have as Kai — that kind of stuff?
Chris Wood: Yeah, they had all my accoutrements waiting for me. I think that was one of the easiest ways to get back into the character, was putting on those weird little rings and his necklace. And the set is all still the same, so you walk out there and it just jolts you right back into where you were two years ago.

Access: Obviously there’s not a lot of time left on ‘The Vampire Diaries,’ but is there any time for him to still be getting used to modern day times? That was a fun little side story arc you had as Kai was him figuring out cell phones and tweeting.
Chris: Yeah. … We know how much he loves Twitter. He’s still discovering what modern day life is like. He wasn’t around long enough to sort of perfect that, but he’s also on a mission this time, which is a little bit different from when we saw him last, because he’s back, and he’s out of hell, but he’s also on a time limit, and he’s got to find a way to secure his footing on Earth so he doesn’t get pulled back into that torture filled horribleness.

Access: To borrow that line from Damon in the trailer, ‘How the hell are you here?’ by the way?
Chris: (laughs) That’s a good question. How am I there? They rang the bell and Kai found an opportunity to sort of work with the supernatural forces at play and break out of there just as that was happening. And he thinks he’s just made it out and he’s sort of ecstatic and a little manic. And then he starts ordering all this food at the Mystic Grill and living his life and having a great time. And he starts eating and he realizes he can’t taste anything, which means that he’s not really there, but in fact he’s on like a time limit/loaner situation from hell, where he’s got to do something to secure his footing on Earth. And he sort of figures out it involves doing more evil deeds and he needs Damon’s help to accomplish that.

Access: [Clearly] Alaric is going to be so angry when he gets to spend more time with you, considering– 
Chris: Oh yeah.

Access: Considering you killed your sister, his wife, on their wedding day … so are we going to get some really [big scenes] between those two guys?
Chris: So, Alaric wants him just dead right away for obvious reasons and understandable reasons, but Kai’s savvy enough to sort of put together his own defense strategy as soon as he pops out, and then we see in the promo teaser that ‘Hey, I can help you bring Elena back!’ which is obviously Damon’s greatest weakness, and probably the quickest way to get to his heart and get him to help you. So, he sort of brings that up and is able to convince Damon to work with him, and Damon’s got to keep Alaric from just taking care of Kai right then and there, which is not the easiest task.

Access: They’ve got to get you in some scenes with Kat [Graham] though, because Kai spent a lot of time with Bonnie and it feels like she might be stepping back into some of her power too, and you guys were great foes on the show. So, can we expect some Kai/Bonnie interactions in this episode?
Chris: I know that that’s going to be a hope of some people … and that’s not off the table and out of the question. Bonnie hates this guy, I would say more than anyone but Alaric,[who] has the most reason to hate him. But she’s probably second in line and she doesn’t want anything to do with Kai when he gets out. And she hears that he’s there and she’s like, ‘Look, don’t bring him near me. I don’t want to see him, I don’t want to hear from him.’ But Kai also has this weird little affinity for her and she’s the first person he saw when he got out of hell and there’s a part of him that’s going to want to get in touch with her. 

Access: Chris, I want to know how you fit this in your schedule because the Mon-El storyline has really been heating up on ‘Supergirl.’ 
Chris: The producers on ‘Supergirl’ were really accommodating in making that happen. The last episode that just aired [on Monday] and then the week before, Mon-El’s a little bit lighter in those episodes because that was when I was shooting ‘Vampire Diaries,’ so they sort of did me a solid and wrote me down for a couple of episodes, much to the chagrin of fans of that relationship having to wait even longer to see it flesh out. 

“The Vampire Diaries” continues Friday at 8/7c on The CW.

Jolie Lash