The Originals season 2 episode 5 review: Red Door

The Originals is treading ground The Vampire Diaries long exhausted. Here's Caroline's review of Red Door...

This review contains spoilers.

2.5 Red Door

Enough with the doppelgangers already. Anyone coming to The Originals from its parent show will know how darn overused the doppelganger element is on The Vampire Diaries, and never has that been more clear than right now. While it’s thankfully been discarded on this season of VD, for instance, this week saw Nina Dobrev guest star on The Originals, bringing the love triangle over with her.

It’s not the same love triangle, but it might as well be. It actually shows The Originals in a good light, all things considered, as its immediately clear how much more clever and interesting the show is than two brothers fighting over one girl. Alas, this was the reason I didn’t enjoy the flashbacks in this episode – it felt like a story we’d already been told more than once, and could have been covered with a quick expositionary speech.

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But I guess the show used the idea well enough, with Esther reminding Elijah of his past misdeeds in order to make him want to take her up on the offer to make him human. The Mikaelson children aren’t known for their emotional security anyway, so any extra fodder for their deep-seeded self-loathing has the power to tip them over the edge and make humanity feel like a good idea.

That’s what makes Esther’s plan so brilliant – it’s plausible that any one of the characters would actually be tempted. Heck, finding the cure was what season four of The Vampire Diaries was all about for Rebekah.

Elijah has been under the impression that it was Esther who killed Tatia in order to invoke the sun and moon curse (that again), but she informs him that this was actually a false memory to prevent him from the pain of murdering his first love. It fits in with Esther’s whole thing – she does questionable, immoral and murderous things in the name of love, and that love is how she justifies her actions to herself.

We left Klaus with Mikael in the back of his car, and Red Door saw part two of their father-son battle. But this time Klaus had a little help from his friends, adoptive children and baby mamas, and the collection of Marcel, Hayley and Cami (plus Kol and Davina in the next room) was enough to see him off.

The white oak stake loophole, which basically saw Davina spell away its power just as Mikael succeeded in stabbing Klaus in the heart, was a little convenient, but at least it reiterated Mikael’s threat level.

The more interesting thing about that sequence was the fact that Kol was fighting on the right side, also basically having abdicated from Esther’s team. He’s working for himself at the moment, from whatever selfish angle he can find, but I’m inclined to believe him when he says he likes Davina. She hasn’t been the more watchable character this year but, if she’s the one to welcome Kol to the team, then the tiresome revenge plot will have been worth it.

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I also loved how Klaus immediately saw through the Kaleb disguise. These people have known each other for thousands of years – of course they’d recognise their family even when they’re wearing different faces.

And it’s a similar insight into their personalities that probably led Esther to target Elijah first. She knows that a) she’s more likely to get Klaus on side if Elijah has been broken first and, b) apart from Rebekah, he’d be the most willing to give up life as a monster. The commentary on his reliance on decorum, loyalty and pressed suits wasn’t news to anyone who’s been watching closely, but it was still interesting to hear spoken aloud on the show itself.

Red Door was one of those episodes we had a lot of last year – episodes in which 40-minutes are padded out with pointless flashbacks and characters talking at each other about their inner demons – but have so far avoided in season two. Filler episodes are fine, and this was a top-notch example of one, but I hope Klaus and Elijah don’t stay separated for too much longer.

Read Caroline’s review of the previous episode, Live And Let Die, here.

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