Thursday, 17 October 2013

S1x3 - The Originals: Tangled Up In Blue

Aired 15/10/13 on The CW

So the spin-off show to The Vampire Diaries has had four episodes now – one rather terrible backdoor pilot in TVD and three episodes of its own season. And yet, I still haven’t decided if I actually like the show. Spin-offs are hard to accomplish – not everything can be as good as Buffy and Angel. The Originals has the difficult task of satisfying an existing audience while ensuring new viewers are not alienated, and it needs to remain true to the essence of TVD while still establishing its own direction. Spin-off series have always had the disadvantage of being compared to their original and The Originals (oh, the irony) will be no exception. At the moment I’m not sold on this new show but I’m not ready to give up on it yet either.

The episode started off on an incredible high. Klaus and Rebecca were bantering back and forth in a way that was reminiscent of a scene between Damon and Stefan (when they weren’t going on and on about Elena) or between Damon and Alaric (poor guy). In amongst their witty banter they concocted a plan to get Elijah back from King Marcel of Bourbon Street. They were on the same team, planning and scheming and I loved it. This dynamic is much more preferable to their repetitive “Oh, I just don’t trust you” and “I hate you” moments. Rebecca was acting rather badass too – instead of pining after high school boys like she ended up doing over in Mystic Falls, New Orleans brought out fun but seriously dangerous Rebecca , who was as enjoyable to watch as vampire Katherine. She was throwing witches across bars and digging her killer high-heels into throats and it was seriously awesome. I’m just itching to buy some new shoes right now.

Unfortunately, that was probably the highest point of the show and everything else seemed to go downhill from there. The plot partly focussed on a relationship between two peripheral characters, a witch called Katie and Marcel’s right-hand vampire, Thierry. As star-crossed lovers they were doomed from the start (somewhere in the afterlife, I imagine Shakespeare is furious at what his famous tragedy has become). Klaus played on their romantic relationship to manipulate Marcel into giving back Elijah, who is currently napping in his coffin under the watchful eye of creepy Davina. Thierry killed a vampire as he defended his beloved’s honour and was sentenced to 100 years in a place called ‘The Garden’, which isn’t as flowery as it sounds. Instead it’s a gross underground tomb where vampires are locked up without blood and left to rot.

Marcel had to ditch his girl at his masquerade party to sort out the whole affair. Camille the Bartender witnessed his angry mood swing and realised that the guy who fancies/probably stalks her is a bit psycho. But hey, it’s his party and he can cry if he wants to. I’m not really sure what Camille’s role will be yet and I can only hope that she won’t end up like TVD’s Matt Donovan, who is really only there to remind us that human-beings do actually exist. She’s got this weird chemistry with Klaus and Marcel seems to be in love with her, so she does have potential, I just hope that the writers allow her to live up to it. One thing that I did scoff at was her angel costume at the masquerade party – terrible use of irony and a definite cliché – but it was pretty! I’m also itching to buy the sparkly, white dress to match my Rebeccaesque shoes.

As Thierry was sentenced to a fate worse than death, Katie used magic to try and kill Marcel but was thwarted at the last moment by Klaus, who just happened to be nearby. Marcel, unaware of Klaus’ puppetry, started eating from the palm of his murderous, little hands and was grateful to him for saving his life. As Marcel promised that Elijah would be returned to Klaus, it seemed that something was finally going right for the Original family. I was relieved because throughout the entire episode I had been missing Elijah’s broody yet heroic antics. The only thing of him in the episode was his incredibly smooth voiceovers, and finally he was coming back to be the sexy, honourable Original vampire that I know and love.

BUT ALAS! My relief was short lived when Davina the weirdo girl, whom we know absolutely nothing about, convinced Marcel to keep Elijah so that she could find out how to kill an original vampire once and for all. SAY WHAT? After all of that scheming and build up we were back to square one. The episode ended with Klaus and Rebecca arguing about how they didn’t like or trust each other again and Elijah was still daggered in his coffin somewhere. I felt cheated. WHAT WAS THE POINT?! The final shot of Hayley trying to figure out what the witches knew about her unborn wolfy/vampire offspring (which I almost forgot about) was also a ridiculous teaser and encapsulated the decline of the episode’s enjoyableness perfectly. A witch swung some mystical looking necklace over the baby bump and discovered that it was a girl, but then she started talking in a weird language and discovered something else – probably awful – about said baby. Hayley sat at her laptop and tried to find the translation of the witch’s words in something that looked a bit like Google, but couldn’t find anything. AND THAT WAS THE END. WORST TEASER EVER – IF THERE EVEN WAS ONE.

At the beginning of the episode we had Elijah to save, Marcel to annoy, more to learn about Davina and more to learn about Hayley and her wolfy/vampire unborn offspring. At the end of the episode we still had Elijah to save, more to learn about the miracle Twilightesque baby and more to learn about Davina. The only thing the show managed to accomplish was that Marcel got a bit annoyed.

Hopefully, the writers will have switched their brains on for next week’s episode. I’m looking for more badass Rebecca, witty brother and sister dynamics, the return of Elijah and a small revelation about Davina or the baby – just something that will move the plot forward and allow me to start really enjoying the show.