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The Originals 1x09: Reigning Pain in New Orleans

The midseason finale brings us shifting alliances, a path to redemption, and a lot of pouty-lipped vampiric hotness.

The Originals 1x09: Reigning Pain in New Orleans

It’s the mid-season finale! The airdate for the next episode hasn't been announced yet, meaning this will be a particularly lonely holiday season without our mighty-good-looking vampiric counterparts to keep us warm.   I suppose this is a good time to go back and marathon the first half of the season – find all the previous recaps here.  Has your opinion changed in light of all the new developments?

"There's the Rory flask...and here's the fun flask!"

The Original Dysfunctional Family Drama

Alliances are shifting this week, and no one is left unscathed.  We all knew it wasn’t going to be easy for Klaus to take over New Orleans from the reluctant Marcel, but that’s not the only tension roiling under the surface.  Davina finds out that Agnes is dead and she’s ostensibly safe – but Marcel isn’t letting her go – so she chooses Josh, Hayley, and Cami over Marcel. Hayley, protected for at least as long as her baby is in utero, learns that Klaus wants to kill all the werewolves, just as she’s possibly found her family.  Marcel chooses Klaus, power, and saving his own skin over Rebekah.  Elijah chooses family over his feelings for Hayley.

Like a deranged CEO sitting on a rather ornate wooden throne, Klaus calls a board meeting with Marcel, Hayley, and the minions to discuss the “change in leadership.”  To assuage the minions’ fears about Klaus wanting to sire hybrids, Klaus says there’s nothing to fear: he can’t sire hybrids if there are no werewolves to turn.  Naturally, Hayley is horrified, but never fear, the Vampire Rescue Squad is going to ensure she doesn’t suffer for Elijah and Rebekah’s mistakes.  (Don’t get me wrong – I love Klaus and how twisted he is, but I don’t think them assuming the worst of Klaus was necessarily a mistake. Thousands of years of self-preservation led them all to that assumption.)

Cami the bartender, stenographer, and occasional psych grad student, only slightly less annoying this week, is leaving herself notes and recordings to try to piece the puzzle together.  Father Kieran hasn’t put her on vervain – why? – though he agrees with Klaus that it’s time for his niece to hit the road.  (I admit I dared hope that would be the end of Cami, but alas, it is not to be.)  By the end of the episode, as Cami is packing under Klaus’ compulsion, Davina shows up to ask for help and undo the compulsion.  What could Cami possibly do to help Davina, one wonders.

The human faction, unsatisfied with Klaus’ “my way or the highway” managing technique, blasts open the vampire hideaway, setting the vampires without daylight rings on fire and spraying Klaus and Marcel with wooden bullets. Naturally, this does not please Hulk Klaus – or Marcel – and so they set out to destroy the faction, all except Father Kieran.  Afterward, Klaus offers to team up with Marcel and rule as equals  -- “brahthaaaaaahs,” Klaus drawls elegantly.  (If this were a drinking game, we’d take a shot each time one of The Originals says “brother,” then go straight to the ER.)

Back in the bayou, Elijah and Rebekah come across their mother’s ring -- on a chain around the neck of one of the werewolves Klaus wanted to kill.  They find that the werewolves are descendants of Klaus’ true father – but in typical Klaus fashion, he doesn’t want to hear about it.  “I’ve had enough of family to last me a lifetime.  Why would I possibly want any more?”  Oh, you gorgeous, pouty wounded bird, stop pecking at your siblings and do something constructive, like read me the phone book.

In the end, Klaus is dangerously close to his humanity again – sharing his feelings of inadequacy and jealousy with Marcel, wondering why Hayley would want anything to do with a family that abandone her, forgiving Elijah and Rebekah and offering them a place to stay, trying to send Cami away for her own good.  It’s hard not to empathize with him, even when you want to shake him and tell him to pull it together.  Joseph Morgan constantly looks like he’s either going to cry, kill someone, or both, and this has quite the effect on my ladyparts heart.

WHY DO WE HAVE TO WAIT TO FIND OUT WHAT HAPPENS NEXT.

The Original Mythology

- Like Elijah, Klaus can show his memories to others, like a really demented version of On Demand.

- The werewolves are the descendants of Klaus’ real father and his mother.  Which makes that poor werechild Hayley’s carrying a bit inbred, like all great monarchies dictate.

The Original Body Count

- Bye-bye, members of the faction, most enjoyably the “pompous” mayor.

The Original WTF

- The photo from 1919 – I thought Klaus and company hadn’t been back to New Orleans for several hundred years?  Why would Klaus not try to take over New Orleans then?

- Why does Elijah (and Rebekah, to a lesser extent) always refer to Hayley as “the girl?” Is Elijah distancing himself to protect his feelings, or do they really see her as only the girl carrying Klaus’ child?

- “You’re Hayley, Klaus’ wife.” “Ew. No.”

- Father Kieran is way too hot and gravelly-voiced for a priest. Inappropriate feelings all over the place!

- “You’ve fallen for her, admit it! It might do wonders for the stick lodged up your enduringly stoic ass if you did.”  I love how Rebekah and Elijah are such siblings here – Rebekah grinning and needling her brother, Elijah sheepish.

- God, Diego is annoying – whining, spitting on the ground, and ignoring Elijah’s requests.  HAVE SOME RESPECT FOR THE STATELY CHIN, OKAY?

- If anyone cares, I googled “Ca c’est bon” (the name of the moving truck outside Elegant Uncle Elijah’s Home for Wayward Wolves) and it translates to an unironic “that’s great.”  I’m assuming there’s no hidden message here. 

- Spit my coffee out laughing at Josh describing Klaus and Elijah’s slaughter of the witches – “just heads and guts, blaaaaaagh!”

- Rebekah alludes to Something Big happening in 1919, a little secret between her and Marcel. “I know the words that will make him hate you forever,” she tells him.  WHAT IS IT?

- WRITERS. WHY DID YOU DENY ME THE ELIJAH/HAYLEY KISS. That is particularly cruel during a dark, cold winter.

- Sophie? Sophie, you out there?

The Original Joseph Morgan Award for Tortured Hot People

God, I love a man in a nice, structured coat.

Oh my god, writers.  THE ELIJAH/HAYLEY TENSION, IT KILLS ME.  Storyline aside, Phoebe Tonkin and Daniel Gillies are so incredibly good looking that it’s unfair, but when you add the soapy “knocked up with your brother’s child but falling in love with you/I must not fall for you, I have to protect you and your family” tension to it, I am powerless to resist.

I’d also like to point out that Marcel and Klaus have really nice mouths.  Not that I was staring at them in an objectifying way, I was just…learning to lip-read.  Yeah.

"What's that, Jennie? You're parched? Have some champagne.  Never mind that it's 9am on the West Coast as you write this, I just want you to be happy. Here, take the glass while you admire me."

What did you think?  Will the hiatus kill you?  (Here lies Forever Young Adult Reader, Cut Down In The Flower of Their Youth by The Originals Hiatus.)  What's up with Eve?  Where did Tyler and Sophie go?  What does Davina think Cami can do to help?  Could the Originals and Marcel be any better looking?

Jennie's photo About the Author: Jennie Kendrick lives in San Francisco and has an excessive fondness of historical fiction, spreadsheets, turquoise sparkly things, and bourbon. When she's not reading, writing, or writing about reading, she cooks obsessively, runs an Etsy shop, and thrifts for vintage everything.