by Laure Mack
Klaus: "I am missing a crucial color in my palette. That of my enemies' blood."
Elijah: "I recommend a venetian red with a hint of rust."
I didn't know what I wanted from this episode before going in, but I can say that whatever timid hopefulness that I had for the show I fell in love with was exceedingly surpassed.
The Guerreros were really nothing more than a means to introduce what this season will really be about. They were a way for our "heroes" to get revenge, a soft introduction for Mikael, Esther, Finn and Kol into the mix and also a plausible story line that would allow this season to hit the ground running. I loved every minute of it. Second seasons for shows that did as well as The Originals did last season can be tricky. There is a lot to live up to, but this show is making none of the usual mistakes as far as I can tell.
Elijah, Hayley and Klaus are all still grieving in their own beautiful ways. This might have been the first time that I was fully on Klaus' side. I could never see him as anything but a damaged villain before, but seeing him so upset about not being with his daughter really tore me up. Some of that had to do with the fact that he didn't lash out at the people he cared about. If he had daggered Elijah or not trusted Marcel or refused to let Cami help or sent Hayley away from their home, then there would have been too many holes in the plan. I mean he only had so many paint brushes, right? Elijah, of course, is trying to use his pain as way to bolster himself up and be a comfort to those around him. Hayley is the one that broke my heart a few times over. Once, when she found the doll in the bayou. Next, when she caught Elijah taking the crib apart and again, when she finally got Francesca's head on a platter but found no peace in her revenge. She very clearly found out that she had been sent away as a baby as a way of saving her life, and was clearly elated about giving her daughter the family and stability she never had. Then she couldn't. She didn't want to be a hybrid, but the witches took that choice from her when they slit her throat. If it were me, I might be biting peoples' heads off too.
Esther and Mikael have always been very interesting villains. Far more deadly to their children than Francesca could ever be. While they had little to do this week, I think it was good for us to ease into the family reunion that Esther is so eager to arrange. Mikael of course wants to kill Klaus, but what about Elijah and Rebekah? For that matter, how will he feel about Esther, Finn and Kol? I can't imagine he'll be too thrilled about Hayley becoming a hybrid, either. Esther's plans are more unclear. The last time she came back, she wanted all of her children dead. I can see Finn helping in that plan since he has helped her before, but I wonder how much Kol knows. As a fan favorite, maybe he'll switch sides and become a double agent. (Also, if someone could tell me where that accent came from, I'd appreciate it.) I'm sure it's been said before, but I'll say it again... with parents like these it's no wonder that the Mikaelson clan is as nutty as they are.
I'm worried about Davina, you guys. She is clearly very powerful. Her revelation to only unleash Mikael on Klaus after she finds a way to unlink his sire line is pretty inspired. She's thinking ahead. I like that. She even cloaked the dagger from Esther, which I can only imagine wouldn't be an easy thing to hide from such a powerful witch, and all that might mean something if Mikael didn't have centuries of experience outwitting his enemies. She has successfully told the coven to back off so they aren't going to come running if she ever needs to ask for help. Hopefully Josh can talk some sense into her now that he can return to the quarter. Either way, she has a dangerous individual on a leash.
Speaking of witches, aside from Davina, they really haven't been painted as ambiguous at all. Murderous, deal-welching baby killers. And having Esther walking around New Orleans can only mean that their PR image is going to get a lot worse. I wonder if that's on purpose or if the writers plan for this to payoff someday?? Or is it just Esthers influence?
Cami and Marcel "stringlessly" shacking up was cute even if it was a little contrived. It was the only part of this episode that didn't work me. I have no qualms with them coupling. They compliment each other well and their chemistry is undeniable, but why put them together at all if the only purpose was to give Marcel someone to talk to the first half of the episode? If that's all it was then go ahead and give Josh more lines. We like Josh.
4 out of 4 Heads on a silver platter
Bits and pieces
There was a point somewhere that I noted the lack of chemistry between Elijah and Hayley and I wondered if it was on purpose. Apparently it was. Kudos to the actors. It can't be easy to turn that kind of thing on and off. (Otherwise the whole Logan/Veronica/Duncan situation would've ended differently.)
Embarrassingly I was frantically trying to keep track of the twelve moonlight rings. Who was wearing them, who was taking them off. Where. etc etc etc. About halfway through the montage of ring-finger-palooza I realized that the Guerreros weren't going to be sticking around past this episode. Whoops.
Elijah stopping to make an observation about Al Capone was fantastic. His crossing the threshold and Francesca's quivering lip were even better. The devil is in the details after all.
I remember there being some talk last season about a Hayley/Elijah/Klaus love triangle and I basically laughed it off as something that could never believably happen. Then Elijah and Hayley had the pow wow in the nursery and I could feel people unshipping. Then the writers gave us the scene at the end between the grieving parents. I watched it three times before it sunk in. These writers can do anything they want to do, and quite possibly might have access to magics.
I wonder if Esther has any plans of dragging Rebekah and consequently Hope back to New Orleans for the reunion.
Rebekah: "Little did they know that the king and his brother would not rest until their enemies were vanquished."
Esther/Cassie: "She's unraveling. Poor thing. Cracking under the pressure."
Finn: "I suppose that was Elijah and Niklaus' plan all along."
Ester: "Say what you will, but your brothers are impressive strategists."
Finn: "A trait they inherited from you, dear Mother."
Ester: "I suppose they did."
Francesca: "I'm the top dog. Your job is to ensure that the fight doesn't come to me."
Hayley: "Did I mention that I've had a rotten couple of months?"