A Sashurai’s Review: The Originals – Season 5×13 (Brothers to the end)

TO 5x13

 

SUMMARY

Hope stops Klaus from staking himself as the Mikaelson family must deal with the darkness inside of Klaus. While chained up, Klaus hallucinates his father, Michael who implores him to kill Hope while a vision of Camille stresses that he not and follow his heart. Klaus escapes into a Mardi Gras parade and is continually tormented until Hope finds. Elijah subdues Klaus while Kol departs New Orleans against Rebekah’s wishes that he remain. Meanwhile, Freya asks Vincent to help father a child for her and Keelin, but he refuses over his reluctance to put any future generation through grief and pain. Elijah undergoes a spell to help dilute the darkness knowing it only buys Klaus a little time. Caroline arrives and Klaus takes her on a tour of the city while his family get together to celebrate Klaus and their memories of him. That night, Caroline helps Klaus deal with saying goodbye as he and Kol return to share in a family dinner of laughter and stories. Marcel swears to be by Hope’s side whenever he needs her and the family perform one last wish-burning to commemorate Klaus’s passing. Klaus says his goodbyes and leaves with Rebekah and Elijah. Vincent later returns and agrees to help Freya and Keelin start a family as Hope paints a picture of the Mikaelsons with Hayley’s spirit watching. In the square, Klaus tells Rebekah that Caroline is getting another cure and it’s her if she wants it. Rebekah thanks him and leaves to find Marcel who dismisses the remaining vampires from the city. Rebekah proposes to Marcel and tells him that she also intends to take the cure. Back in the square, Elijah breaks the last white oak stake and tells Klaus that he too intends to leave the world with his brother, having already said his goodbyes. Klaus laments that he doesn’t deserve his brother’s love but the two embrace and put an end to each-other’s lives as they slowly turn to ash and dissolve in the city.

 

INITIAL THOUGHTS

The Originals brought its family back one last time to say goodbye to not only Klaus, but Elijah Mikaelson as well. Both sacrificed themselves for the future and Rebekah with the others are free to make their futures as bright as they can make it. The course of Klaus’s end was never in question on this night as he fought to take the darkness with him. Cameos were all-present and the tears were very real. Their stories will hopefully live in for the next series to come and start its new course. It’s up to Hope now to carry that legacy into the next arc of the Mikaelsons and their unbridled nature to attract evil and drama. In short, this was the appropriate and fitting end that never lost sight of Klaus’s over-arcing story of redemption. Maybe he was and maybe he wasn’t, but one thing’s for sure. His story and Elijah’s are concluded…for now.

 

THE GOOD

This was a masterful work of sorry and goodbyes, a series of laments and laughter softly echoing in the background as Hope had the most trouble understanding what was going to happen and how to deal with it. Luckily, the writers were kind and gave everyone as much of a fairy-tale ending as they could given the longevity and life-style of these rich and troublesome characters. The most epic for me came in the presence of Rebekah’s happiness and choice to at some point become human. She was always my favorite character and if you want to get really technical the only Mikaelson to never truly succumb to a permanent form of death, although the body switching came drastically close. I think if anyone deserved to finally be free of the drama it was her and now, unless Legacies draws her back, she should be on her way to having a normal-ish life with a powerful vampire as her husband.

 

The choice to end both Klaus and Elijah’s lives together was interesting and while at first I thought it wasn’t necessary, I understand why it happened. With the exception of Hayley, Elijah never really wanted anything for himself that wasn’t some form of helping Klaus. If she were still alive I wonder what choice Elijah would have made here, but it’s possible the brothers might have gone out the same way regardless. It’s hard to film a vampire’s noble death, let alone two at the same time, but hats off to the crew for helping make Klaus and Elijah’s final appearance a heart-felt one…no pun intended.

 

THE BAD

No scene with Elijah and Hayley dancing in the afterlife or Klaus being accepted in an afterlife of redemption. Sometimes it’s best not to know, but in our case, maybe a little assurance that a character like Klaus won’t be stuck in limbo forever.

 

FAVORITE MOMENT

Tough to spot. I’d like to say that last moment when the brothers shared their ashen and silent goodbyes, but because Rebekah seemed so happy to hear about the cure that it was her goodbye to Klaus I am going to favorite this time. I’m just glad she made it through this series without dying and there were certainly a few times that seemed like it was plausible.

 

CHARACTER MVP

How can I not give it to the brothers, Klaus and Elijah as together they met their ends by each other’s hands and no one else’s. Klaus learned his last lesson on how to say goodbye and maybe even forgive himself for everything’s he’s done. And even if he couldn’t, Elijah was there to do it for him. Validation and redemption, the two key pieces for these two and they, in retrospect, accomplished what they set out to do, one helped his brother find peace, and the other made sure peace was what he needed. Always and forever, right?

 

ENDING THOUGHTS

I guess I don’t really buy Michael and Camille’s visual showcase of his internal struggle to deal with the darkness inside him. The plot here was a bit off on how the darkness was going to affect him in that he was supposed to get really angry and dangerous but ultimately some voice in his head wanted him to kill Hope while the other voice pleaded not to. I would have thought the darkness would, (Given a 2 hour finale if it were one) be set so that Klaus would become apocalyptic and really put the world, or the city in this case in real danger. The family themselves would be forced to make the sacrificial decision for Klaus but instead the darkness was very much in the background in place for a tidy ceremony of goodbyes. I suppose it was more therapeutic to handle Klaus’s end this way rather than make him a fashionable villain one last time, but the stress of the darkness taking Klaus just wasn’t there at all from my perspective. It felt a bit hollow…no pun intended.

 

I think it’s safe to say Marcel will somehow cameo in the Legacies series given his statement to help Hope whenever she needs it. In fact I wouldn’t be surprised if almost everyone on this show at one point or another shows up. I also fully expect Klaus to appear in some spiritual capacity in Legacies as well, if nothing else to confirm that he journeyed to the other side with barely a bump in the road.

 

I’m also not convinced that every vampire is just going to leave New Orleans be considering it’s natural pull to bring the supernatural in one place. I get that there probably won’t be any more stories to showcase there, but Legacies doesn’t always need to be tied to Mystic Falls. After all, which town/city handles daily parties better?

 

OVERALL SCORE

10 out of 10. They didn’t twist anyone’s fate and the show didn’t back down on Klaus and Elijah’s either. Two Mikaelsons died and the world will move on. Every goodbye was heartfelt as were the promises that those left behind will do good by those near and far. After reviewing all five seasons of this neck-snapping, high intensity, family driven, drama I can honestly say it was a fantastic ride and the Mikaelsons got the screen time they deserved after debuting in TVD so long ago. Now it’s up to Hope and the school to see where they can take it from here. Thanks for reading, we’ll be back this fall.

 

 

No more words

 

 

A Sashurai’s Review: The Vampire Diaries – Season 5×13 (If Katherine’s undoing is because she writes differently in that journal, I’ll laugh)

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Damon’s back to old basics and making life with the group thoroughly complicated as Katherine continues playing true to Elena’s personality around Stefan, Caroline, and Bonnie. Nadia is forced to improvise when Tyler begins to discover her acts of compulsion with Matt, and Bonnie discovers a new witch on campus, who is unfortunately drawn into Damon’s plot to find Wes.

Damon’s acts are a step in the right direction, but his personality, as of late, is beginning to over-exhaust itself. Maybe if Enzo stepped back on his carefree attitude a bit it wouldn’t seem so cumbersome. Two equally snarky vampires trying to out snark each other doesn’t lend to their singular strengths. The theme of giving up on old connections and moving on was told through another backdrop of a unique party that should never be attempted in real life. A few scenes worked, a few didn’t, making “Total Eclipse of the Heart” a slightly above average addition to the season.

(QUICK SUMMARY)

At the college, Caroline convinces Elena(Katherine) and Bonnie to attend a “Bitter Ball” dance for singles while Katherine attempts to lure Stefan closer. Nadia remains in Mystic Falls to continue using Matt to help Katherine maintain her cover.

Stefan finds Damon back at home with Aaron’s body in the trunk of his car. Enzo arrives and the two conspire to find and kill Wes. While Enzo is prepping a grave for Aaron, Stefan threatens to kill him if he doesn’t leave town.

Wes goes to a tied up janitor and explains that he made him into a vampire. A woman, Sloan enters the room and offers him money and protection in exchange for his help in analyzing some blood. Wes initially denies an alliance until she reveals that Aaron is likely dead and that he’s next.

Later that day, Enzo and Damon murder the head of Whitmore security when she is unable to tell them where Wes is. Damon realizes he has to find other means to locate him.

Tyler goes to the Mystic Grill bar and meets Nadia. The three drink together and reminisce over stories of their mothers. When Tyler leaves for the bathroom he over hears Nadia using compulsion on Matt to explain who Enzo is so Katherine can stay filled in on the situation.

Damon and Enzo find Bonnie with Jeremy and force Bonnie to help or they’ll hurt him.

At the party, Stefan finds Elena(Katherine) and the two dance and talk until Caroline pulls Katherine aside to try and convince her to move on from past ex’s. Damon arrives to gain everyone’s interest in helping find a witch or Enzo will kill Jeremy. Katherine plays her role and convinces Stefan to help find Jeremy at the Whitmore house.

Bonnie finds Liv, an unseasoned witch who she discovered in a class earlier and asks for her help in doing a locator spell. Liv denies being a witch until Caroline arrives to force the issue. She tries to do the spell but is unable to focus as Damon forces the issue when he tells Enzo they’re not cooperating.

Enzo decides to make good on his threat and puts a bag over Jeremy’s head, suffocating him. Liv is able to complete the spell when Stefan and Katherine find Enzo and Jeremy. Enzo and Stefan fight as Katherine successfully resuscitates Jeremy. Damon finds them and tells Enzo he knows where Enzo is. The two leave and Stefan tells Damon not to bother coming back.

Meanwhile, at the grill, Tyler convinces Matt he’s been compelled and to take vervane against Nadia. Matt meets Nadia outside and plays at being compelled when she asks him if Caroline has feelings for Stefan. Nadia rushes away and Tyler returns only for Nadia to sneak up from behind and break his neck. When Tyler recovers Matt tells a story about Nadia convincing Tyler not to pursue the situation. Matt then meets Nadia who intends to bleed the vervane from his system and come up with a future plan for him.

Back at the dorm, Stefan tells Elena (Katherine) that he waited for Damon to screw up with Elena but he liked seeing him as a better person made him not want to wait anymore. Stefan admits he doesn’t want to lose that person Damon was and Katherine offers to help only for Stefan. The two hug as Caroline comes in seeing their embrace.

Damon and Enzo track the location where Wes is and encounter Sloan, who is a Traveler and with others. They chant, causing the two to collapse. Wes then injects Damon with a serum. When they wake, The Travelers and Wes are gone. Damon finds the janitor and frees him and begins to realize that the serum inside him is what makes vampires feed on other vampires. He is unable to resist and feeds on the vampire janitor until his head is ripped off. Damon then stares at Enzo, who sees the new problem at hand.

(END SUMMARY)

As stated earlier, one ego-centric, carefree, annoyed, heartless Damon is fine, but two is one too many. Enzo isn’t fitting with the buddy vampire system. He has potential but it’s being wasted because he’s acting the same exact way Damon would. I get the jaded, evil, vampire wickedness, but there’s nothing separating the two. Damon endures his insufferable acts with self loathing while Enzo tries to but it comes off as too little too late. He attempted to show he didn’t care about the pain when he plunged some of the wooden shovel in his own chest while Stefan was holding it. The moment fell flat the instant Stefan moved the metal side to his neck with a stronger threat of decapitation. Enzo can accomplish the same task by being more cold and calculating in his delivery and not bored and conceded. His attempt to suffocate Jeremy was in the right direction, except the method he chose. A vampire wouldn’t suffocate their victim in this show. They need slashed flesh or loud broken necks to satiate their needs. It was a way to keep Jeremy alive while still making it look like he might have died. Might as well turn the guy into a vampire already, he’s seemed to have outlived his usefulness as a hunter.

Damon’s acts are also a bit out of the ordinary. While it makes sense to alienate everyone who cared about you, I can hardly believe that he’d be truly okay with Jeremy dead. If he intended to remove Elena’s happiness altogether, then he should have made that the goal and not trying to find and kill Wes. He tried to redirect his frustration to someone who “deserved” his retaliation. If he let or caused Jeremy’s death that would have been completely counterproductive to his plan. His real growth has now begun as we’ll have to see him become a good person without the aid of Elena’s love driving it. Turning him into a vampire eating vampire will help detract that a bit, which can offer up a new side of the man. Knowing the likely premise, Damon will have control fits and Enzo will be left trying to ascertain how far he’ll go to remain in the plot. They’ll be snarky like usual and Damon will finds and kill unsuspecting vampires as they are found. I’d rather he show a darker side that doesn’t find the situation amusing or worth gawking at. His best mannerism is when he looks confused and pissed off at the same time, but I think it’s time to move on from that paradigm of emotional ambiguity. It’s time to turn him overtly serious.

It was interesting watching an entire episode without Elena’s presence. We weren’t treated with some inner struggle or scenes of Elena warping through flashbacks of Katherine’s life. I’m glad they chose to keep Elena out because it helped keep the focus grounded in reality. It’s unfortunate that Katherine sink to whatever level it takes to win Stefan over, including possibly letting Jeremy die. Her obsession with Stefan will undoubtedly be her undoing and it would make the most sense if he was the one to spot Katherine’s deception first. I thought the curly hair would give it away, but maybe it’s not curly enough.

Sloan will have Wes analyze Stefan and Elena’s blood, the question is, why? Theories running rampant, I imagine it will play closer to some possible curse of their own and not so much a key to a power they want. They don’t seem like the kind of group that are interested in getting stronger or revenge beyond Silas and he’s not a picture in this anymore. By the end of it, I’m sure it will spell the end of the doppelganger curse once and for all.

Some of the unbalanced elements of this episode include:

1. Caroline unknowingly playing at finding out Katherine’s identity. The cliché is worn out on any show and only would have been believable if Katherine had a large axe behind her back, ready to swing if Caroline was right. That would have been funnier and lightened the mood more than Katherine’s fumbling to stay in character.

2. Jeremy has nothing to do on this season. He had moments of flair when he tried to appeal to some of  Katherine’s humanity. They were poignant scenes adding some depth to his character when he isn’t pining away at Bonnie. Without her, he’s useless as a supporting character. He needs a fresh direction to go. The hunter aspect has fizzled out, leaving him with little to do but get kidnapped and threatened. He’s a stronger character than that and should have been able to do more than just eyeball stare Damon when he wanted Bonnie. Not to mention, their bond as family isn’t having any affect anymore. It’s sad when Damon’s caring of Jeremy earlier on is really only because of Damon’s relationship with Elena. Alaric is about the only other person left that Damon had any respect for and could probably talk some sense into him, if only he were still alive.

3. Tyler is wandering as well. Caroline is willing to give him up and just when you thought he might be smitten with Nadia, the scene goes south to nowhere. He and Matt should have done a trip and come back with new perspectives later in the arc. There isn’t much in the way of help and the guy is a hybrid. Surely he can tackle someone like Damon who’s now feasting on vampires. Try to make him relevant or write his character out.

4. Parties. Parties, parties, and more parties. Even Stefan is looking bored when he does these. It was a comical theme and needs to stop being a way to bring our team together. High school to college transitions aren’t easy because many of the same storytelling elements are the same. Finding love, struggling with identity, growing up, all of these elements have been started and restarted. The backdrop of college should be intertwined with the season’s message and so far, there just isn’t one that’s sticking. Liv is the only example of what they’re doing right, and she’s just a minor character who doesn’t understand a thing about the supernatural. Ease off on the parties and college unless it’s a fundamental aspect of the show. Right now, it’s not.

Overall, the best parts are the ones that are moving the character’s into new territory. Damon has to deal with a new problem that will either enhance his evil carelessness, or subdue for the greater good. Damon’s on the balance act as he should be. He needs to do what he has to for himself, or at very least, his brother. Stefan will somehow see Katherine’s deception. If he truly loved and knows Elena, he’ll spot the flaws, anyone else who finds out won’t make much sense unless the plot maneuvers itself into a better outcome. I do wonder if Nadia will be removed from the plot if Katherine is. She’s a nice character who suffers the same balance and dependence as Damon does. Maybe they are the ones who should be connecting.

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