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The Originals - When the Saints Go Marching In - Review + POLL

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When I first started writing for SpoilerTV I started out doing reviews for Castle, but quickly realized it wasn’t the right fit. But when I signed up to review this show 5 years ago it all clicked for me. Now it’s 5 years later and while this is no longer the only show I review, it’s the one that’s closest to my heart. That’s why, to truly say goodbye to this show, I’ve written an extra-long review. So buckle in, because for the last time this is what happened on The Originals: Hope stopped Klaus from killing himself. The entire family gathered to say goodbye to him. Freya asked Vincent to help her and Keelin start a family. Klaus made arrangements for Rebekah so that in a few decades she can take the cure and be human. She asks Marcel to marry her. Hope struggles to accept that her father will die and they have a tearful goodbye. Klaus and Caroline share a last kiss. Elijah decides that he wants to die alongside his brother and they both die in the spot where everything started. 

They finally got it right: I’m going to get into this issue a bit later in the review when I talk about the show in general but I loved that for once, the big bad wasn’t the main focus. I feared in advance that the finale would spend too much time on The Hollow or even the spin-off that we wouldn’t get a decent goodbye to the show we’ve loved for the past 5 years. I’m glad I was wrong. This episode really focused on the relationships between the family members and the writers took care to input parallels to early in the show or even to events on The Vampire Diaries which showed just how far they’ve all come. These siblings have fought many times, even this week, but at the end of the day they love each other and that was clear this week. Thank you, writers, for giving us a proper goodbye to the Original family. 

Wasn’t expecting that: There were a lot of rumors online that Elijah would take The Hollow from Klaus and die while Klaus rode off into the sunset with Caroline (at least that’s the one I read). I’m glad that didn’t happen, though I was certainly expecting it. We all knew Elijah would die, it’s been very obvious for the last half of the season. But I did not expect the writers to kill off Klaus. While I did once think that Klaus’ death was the only way the show could end, he’s come so far that I just didn’t think it necessary. However, the only way that Klaus would not be present in Legacies, not be near his daughter who he loves so much, would be if he’s dead. I’ve been pondering this these last few weeks and there’s just no other way he’d leave her. But it did surprise me that they’d kill off Hope’s last parent, that poor girl. But I really loved the final scene, the way Klaus and Elijah died together (so glad we didn’t have to see them burst into flames). It felt similar to the final scene of The Vampires Diaries, together in death. 

The moment my heart broke: This episode may have shown us the first and last time that the Original family sat around the table happily. There’s always been some kind of conflict before, but seeing them actually, share stories and get along, especially with the new members like Hope, Keelin, and Marcel (who was previously always a bit on the outside) brought tears to my eyes. Especially since we knew that would be one of the last times we’d see these characters laugh. The actual tears came when Klaus gave Rebekah the one thing she’s always wanted, to be human. He fought her on this every step of the way on The Vampire Diaries, but this time he’s the one to arrange it. She’ll have to wait a little while until Damon is done with the cure but after that, she’ll finally have the chance to have a family of her own. 

Missing pieces: While I loved this episode, there were a few things that were missing. I’d kind of hoped that Hayley would have a slightly bigger part in this episode. I know a lot of people expected to see her reunited with Elijah in the afterlife. I sort of expected to see her as a hallucination of Klaus. While I loved seeing Mikael and Cami as sort of Klaus’ dark side and light side, Hayley would’ve been perfect as a combination of the 2. I had also hoped for another flashback to the Original family when they were younger as a way to include Esther and Finn in this finale. I still feel like there’s a moment between Klaus and Elijah, the last time they met before Mystic Falls, that we’re missing. The most recent flashback that we got didn’t include Klaus telling Elijah that he buried their siblings at sea, which lead to Elijah being angry enough to nearly kill his brother. I really wanted that scene. 
What could’ve gone better (part 1): Now onto the season, while there were episodes that I greatly enjoyed there are also a lot of ones that I didn’t. My main issue this season was the villain. Doing 2 villains at once didn’t work for me. I think it would’ve been better had they scrapped the storyline about the nazi vampires and just stuck with The Hollow. Not only didn’t I care much for the former storyline, it took away screen time that would’ve been better spent on family moments. I feel like The Vampire Diaries had the same issue. This is your final season, which you know in advance, so use it to focus on what we all love the most. The characters and the relationships. This show has always been at its best when it focused on family. This was the season where they could’ve really delved deeper into those relationships, wrap everything up nicely, bring back characters we know and love… That didn’t happen. Instead, Elijah was absent a lot at the beginning of the season. Hayley barely got any screen time, if I’m not mistaken she got more screen time after her death than before (still not okay with her dying, btw). Kol and Rebekah were barely in it. We saw Davina, who was once a main character, once. This was just overall disappointing. Though, it wasn’t all bad of course. 

Most impressive: One of the highlights this season for me was Hope. Sure, we got off to a rocky start when she kidnapped her own mother to lure her father into town (though that was totally a Klaus move). But Danielle Rose Russell really impressed me as Hope. She may be the newbie opposite actors that have been doing this a while but she really held her own. Many of her scenes brought me to tears, especially in last week’s episode and in the funeral episode. I think we all often forgot that Hope is just a teenager amongst people who have been around for many centuries. And kids make mistakes, I’m sure she’ll be carrying the guilt of her mother’s death (and now her father’s) around for a long time. I think that if it weren’t for Danielle’s portrayal of Hope, that I probably wouldn’t be as excited for Legacies as I am. I expect we’ll be seeing a slightly darker Hope, now that she’s lost both of her parents. And yes, I will be reviewing it and I can’t wait to see her lead her own show. 

Most improved: Does everyone remember the Klaus we met 7 years ago on The Vampire Diaries? The villain that daggered his own siblings, was terrified of his own mortality and didn’t really have anyone he trusted. I’ve loved and hated Klaus over the years but these last 2 seasons I’ve been amazed by how much he’s changed. Sure, he still makes reckless decisions. But he made amends with his family, worked through some of his trauma with Mikael and realized that death isn’t the scariest thing. In the pilot episode, Klaus pretended not to care about Hayley’s pregnancy, even though he did care but was terrified of what it meant. But Klaus has found someone he loves so much, he’d do anything for her and that includes dying. The man who was once terrified of the cure because it could maybe be used against him willingly died for his daughter. Klaus had no experience of parenthood and he certainly didn’t have any good examples. From the moment she was born, he already made the hardest decision of his life to send her away with Rebekah for her own safety. Sure, he messed up a few times as well like when he separated her from her mother at the end of season 2 or when he stopped calling her after she saw him kill people. But I love the Klaus that we saw this season. When Hayley died, this was the moment that he really stepped up, despite being completely overwhelmed. It killed him to see Hope get sicker and to not be able to do anything about it. Even at the end, he wanted to spare her the pain of a goodbye. But I’m glad they did get their goodbye and I’m glad we got to see the evolution of Klaus Mikaelson from villain to a hero in his daughter’s eyes. 
Best addition: By the time we were halfway through the first season of this show, there were barely any members of the Original family left (more on that later), so I was very glad when Freya was introduced in the second season. A lot of us weren’t quite sure what to think of her, who’s side was she really on. But it quickly became clear that she’d been manipulated her whole life. She clashed with Klaus quite a bit, in my opinion, this was because they are so similar. Throughout the season we saw go from being an outsider in the family she always wanted to a true Mikaelson, who would go to war for her siblings and loved ones. Freya brought a very interesting dynamic to the show. Finn had been mostly absent so it was Elijah who was the big brother to Klaus, Kol, and Rebekah. And here comes their big sister, one they’d only heard about. It’s a shame we didn’t get to see much of her relationship with Finn since he was the only one who remembered her from before. But I love the relationships that she developed with her siblings, her wife Keelin and her best friend Vincent. I do hope we get a few glimpses or mentions of her in Legacies. 

Favorite character: I said I was going to write this and I keep my promises. I originally planned to do a big piece on Josh, unfortunately, his premature death led me to write a part of this in a previous review so this will be a bit shorter than I’d intended. Do you guys remember Josh when we first met him? The scared kid that got screwed over by his friend, that was trying to find his place in the world. Let’s be honest, none of us thought he’d live very long. He was the newbie vampires, surrounded by ancient ones, who delivered funny one-liners. He was screwed. And he did, in fact, have quite a few close calls. But he was such an endearing guy that the other characters made a special effort to keep him from becoming collateral damage. We saw him develop a close friendship with Davina, that unfortunately the writers forgot about after a few seasons, and find love with Aiden, a werewolf. Despite not wanting to get too attached, because it didn’t seem like he’d be around for long, I couldn’t help but slowly fall in love with this character. He really grew into his own, from a scared newbie vampire to a leader of his community, respected by all. He never compromised his own values or abused the power he was given. And he wasn’t afraid to speak up, despite the risk it might bring him. It almost seemed like he’d become the Matt Donovan of The Originals, the guy that somehow makes it through the show alive despite all of the odds. The guy that should’ve probably left town years ago for his own good. And then, with only 3 episodes to spare, he was killed while trying to save his friend. It’s been 3 weeks and I still don’t understand why they had the kill him off. The only reason I can think of is that it was to make Marcel realize that he needs to do better, which is a point the writers could’ve made without having to kill off Josh. But I’ve already discussed how I feel about his death in a previous review. Josh Rosza (yes, I had to look up his last name) was an amazingly underrated character. Steven Krueger did an amazing job with him. RIP Josh. 
What could’ve gone better (part 2): So this is the part where I talk about what the show could’ve done better. Sure, there’s a lot so I’ll just focus on what bothered me the most. When you announce that you’re doing a spin-off of the Vampire Diaries called The Originals, what do you expect? That’s right, Original vampires. So I assume I wasn’t the only one who was surprised that Kol was killed off before the backdoor pilot had even aired. So the show started with 3 of the 5 (at the time) siblings. And then Rebekah left before the first season had even ended. Don’t get me wrong, if the actress wanted to leave then I completely understand but you can imagine that I was a bit worried now that we only had 2 Original vampires left. I feel that this show never fully utilized its biggest asset. The Originals was at its best when it focused on family. In my opinion, Rebekah, Kol, Finn and even Esther and Mikael should’ve been a much bigger part of this show. Did anyone ever even mention little Henrik, the brother that died at a young age? But that being said, I did greatly enjoy this show. These characters will always hold a special place in my heart. Thank you to the cast and crew for all your hard work for these past 5 years. You will be missed. 

Best quotes: Kol: “He’s a cockroach that will outlive us all. And we’re immortal.” 
Kol: “Get out of the way!” Rebekah: “Not a chance in hell.” 
Klaus: “You have no idea of the agony of being a father. Loving someone so much you cannot bear to see them in pain.” Elijah: “I think I might have some idea.” 
Klaus: “Listen. I’ve not lived an honorable life. You know that. But doing this, taking the darkness into myself so no one else is afflicted by it, that is an honorable death. And I can do that. I can do it, Hope. Because you’ve helped me feel something that I never thought was possible. Unconditional love. My daughter, my heir, you’re my heart.” 
Kol: “I should’ve known that this was going to be redundant.” Elijah: “Brother, Bourbon is never redundant.” 
Klaus: “You know, as much as I’ve savored the joy of tormenting you throughout the years, I must confess you all mean everything to me. Your loyalty and your counsel and your love is probably the only reason why I’ve survived as long as I have.” Klaus: “I love you, more than all the days and nights, deeper than the oceans and the skies.” Hope: “I love you too. How do we do this?” Klaus: “I wish I knew.” 

That’s it for The Originals. Normally this is where I tell you to check in next week for the next review. Instead, I hope you’ll check out my reviews for Legacies this October and of course let me know in the comments what you thought of the series finale. 

Please be respectful in the comments, any unnecessary rudeness isn't welcome.

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