By Mandi Bierly
September 10, 2010 at 03:42 PM EDT

Image Credit: Bob Mahoney/The CWWe touched upon it in our recap of The Vampire Diaries‘ season 2 premiere, but The Vampire Diaries first hint of homoeroticism — unless I’m forgetting something (Isobel’s gay cowboy minion doesn’t count) — deserves its own post. Uncle Mason (Taylor Kinney) had to tackle his nephew Tyler (Michael Trevino) to the ground when the angry teen physically lashed out at his mother grieving his douchey dad’s death. Fine. But he didn’t have to land on top of him in front of the fireplace! Maybe the flames were supposed to be a metaphor for the rage that burns inside them as part of the Lockwood family werewolf curse. Maybe they were just supposed to be pretty. But that quick shot with the fireplace behind them was totally hot. (Sadly, that angle was not one of The CW publicity stills.) I hope it wasn’t that brief because they knew it looked a little too romantic (warm lighting, fireplace, expensive rug, nearby leather sofa) and were afraid to go there. That’s an innate part of the vampire genre, and you’re a sexy show (see: steamy, mutual shirt-tearing foreplay between Damon and Katherine, Damon stealing a glance at Bonnie’s cleavage, Katherine looking Stefan up and down) — embrace it. TO CLARIFY for commenters worried I’m suggesting incest here: I’m not. I’m not saying there’s something between Tyler and Mason. I’m saying anger is an emotion that can boil over into passion. The intensity of that emotion can become sexy to viewers watching it.

I concede playing it up between two male vampires would be cliché, but we know from a recent chat with executive producer Kevin Williamson that there will be tension between the werewolves and the Salvatore brothers. “It’s in line with all the other sort of mythologies in that if you go back to the beginning of time, wherever there was a werewolf, there seemed to be a vampire nearby and they always seemed to be at odds with each other,” he told us. “We don’t reinvent that part of the story line. What it means to be a werewolf and a vampire coexisting in Mystic Falls, the rules are different here and there.” Since Damon and Stefan don’t even know werewolves exist, there’s the opportunity for heated, in-your-face confrontations with the Lockwood men as they piece it together. That’s what I want to see. You?

More Vampire Diaries:

Season 2 premiere recap

Vampire Diaries primer: Everything you need to know for season 2

Inside the Writers Room: The Vampire Diaries returns, as does some of TV’s most satisfying pacing

Ian Somerhalder talks Sexiest Beast title and season 2