This review contains spoilers.
2.18 Night Has A Thousand Eyes
The second season of The Originals has featured one big difference to the first in that, for probably the first time ever, Klaus has something he cares about that’s under threat. Yes, we’ve seen him be periodically loyal to his family (especially Rebekah and Elijah) and attracted to Caroline Forbes on some sort of emotional level, but having a child has completely changed the game for him.
He’s got protecting himself down to a fine art, his paranoia ensuring that anything that could be a threat now or in the future is eliminated as quickly as possible, but protecting someone else – especially someone as seemingly helpless as a baby – is entirely different.
We’ve seen all year that he’s struggled with sharing that responsibility with Hayley and Jackson, pushing back against any strategies they may have and sometimes only putting up with Hayley out of necessity, but now the biggest threat yet to Hope’s safety has landed in New Orleans, and all bets are off.
I wasn’t surprised that Mikael was killed off (again) one week after Esther’s similarly swift demise (again) – they were both plot devices there to push the main characters towards their respective realisations – and every scene featuring Mikael just brought home all the things I loathe about the Mikaelson parents.
Whiny Klaus always irritates, and at this point anything those two have to say to each other has been said a million different ways across two separate shows. Freya’s lingering love for her father at least added some weight to the situation, because lord knows Elijah and Rebekah are as over the situation as I am.
So Mikael is gone, and Klaus was unable to get any sort of closure on his traumatic childhood. In the end, there were no answers or reasons as to why he was so hated and, after centuries for those questions to linger in the back of his mind, that’s the real tragedy.
At its core, The Originals is about families banding together in spite of their dysfunction, and right now there are two little units that are completely healthy, dependable and apart from anything else going on. As Jackson said in this episode, this isn’t their war, but he and Hayley have been roped into it anyway. Hayley’s arc since Vampire Diaries has been finding a place to belong and, with Jackson and the wolves, she’s finally landed somewhere she can feel safe.
But Hope ties her to Klaus and the rest of the vampires, which also ties them both to Dahlia – the very threat they’re trying their best to avoid. Running away probably would have made things worse in the end, but you can’t blame them for trying.
The storyline was really Aiden’s, though, with him trying to survive despite being stuck in the middle of two secretly warring leaders. Klaus’ observation that Josh and Aiden’s love for each other made them easy to manipulate was telling not just about them, but also about him, Mikael and Davina.
Everyone on this show cares about something, but Aiden and Josh’s relationship has always felt like a little utopia separated from the Shakespearean tragedy going on elsewhere. When the rest of the show invades that paradise is when they’re in trouble, and I grow increasingly doubtful they’ll both come out of the season alive. Josh’s assertion that he’d die for Aiden has to be taken as more than just a sweet token of comfort when the stakes are this high.
On the surface, we’re back where we were last year with the multiple factions of New Orleans readying themselves for war, but things are so much more complicated now. Dahlia murdering Josephine will probably keep the witches from defying her again, but the first battle for the vampires and werewolves is the rivalry between Klaus and Jackson.
The problem? They both love the same thing – Hope – and that love will, quite ironically, be what most likely loses them the war against Dahlia.
Read Caroline’s review of the previous episode, Exquisite Corpse, here.
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