The ever-charming Ian Somerhalder appeared on The Talk earlier this week and chatted all things Damon Salvatore — including what he doesn’t understand about Delena fans. What did the Vampire Diaries heartthrob have to say?

When asked how fans can still cheer for Damon — and his relationship with Elena (Nina Dobrev) — even after all of the horrible things he has done, Ian said: “That’s the beauty of what Julie [Plec] and Kevin [Williamson] and the writer have created. It’s so weird that…people say, ‘Oh, we want Elena to be with Stefan or Damon,’ It’s like, guys, we’ve killed her entire family. She’s dead. And, also, too — at 173 years old — I mean you might not want to date an 18-year-old.”

All valid points, Ian. Given any semblance of narrative distance from the couple, it seems obvious that Elena should ditch the Salvatores and find some less destructive, more age-appropriate romances (perhaps, of the non-love triangle variety) in which to take part. But, we’re so invested in these characters — and this show spins its tale so well — that we can’t help but be drawn in. Just like Elena.

Ian made some interesting points elsewhere in the interview about the intimacy of serial TV as a medium, versus something like film, and we can’t help but think how it’s related to this Delena discussion: “It’s pretty amazing, the idea and the...psychology behind how invested we get in stories,” Ian said. “Because, in series television — unlike films — you’re in someone’s living room every week. They’re watching you on the iPad or its on the plane or in their bed, whatever, and it’s very intimate and it’s every week. And it’s amazing how invested we become in these storie.” Word.

Do you agree with Ian’s take on the Delena relationship? Sound off in the comments below!

Catch the next episode of The Vampire Diaries on Thursday, May 1 at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.

Kayti Burt is a contributing writer for Wetpaint Entertainment with a penchant for all things pop culture. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!