The second season of The Originals opened with Rebekah sharing a fairy tale story with baby Hope about her family. But Auntie Bex’s soothing voice was a far cry from the true horrors of the French Quarter. Klaus, Elijah and Hayley remained under self-imposed house arrest, Marcel was exiled across the river, Cami was stalked by werewolves and Francesca and her pack lorded over the town with the power their rings pulled from Klaus every full moon. Basically, everyone’s lives sucked (no pun intended) and the Mikaelson family didn’t even know about the biggest threats against them.
Mikael remained locked in Davina’s attic and plotted ways to kill the young witch along with his children – if only he could break the binding spell that left him at her mercy. Meanwhile, his wife Esther (in the form of Harvest girl Cassie) worked with Francesca and the wolves with their oldest son Finn (in the form of a man named Vincent) at her side. For now, she’s just biding her time and waiting to spring a family reunion on her sons.
“Rebirth” got off to a slow start as the episode moved the pieces into play. I didn’t mind the fairy tale opening because any time Claire Holt is on my screen, I am a happy girl, but after that, the exposition got a little too heavy (one of the sins committed in the early episodes of last season that I did not wish to revisit again). We had Mikael explaining he’s the vampire who hunts vampires, Cami and Marcel doing mini recaps of the war between Marcel and Klaus, Klaus, Elijah and Hayley reminding us why they had to let everyone think the baby was dead. I know shows want to simplify things for new viewers, but there’s a limit to how much the old viewers want to rehash.
Thankfully, things started to pick up fairly quickly once Klaus declared he was tired of waiting and Elijah agreed it was time to take down their enemies. But they couldn’t do it alone. My absolute favorite TV trope ever is when a group of people get together to execute a plan and it goes off without a hitch. It’s even better when the group of people doesn’t necessarily get along, but are willing to put that aside in favor of defeating a common enemy. So needless to say what unfolded next left me sitting here cheering with hearts in my eyes because it was pure perfection.
First, Joe (a record store owner and old friend of Marcel’s who helped during the first vampire/werewolf war) revealed to Francesca and company that the white oak stake was missing and rumor has it that the priest ended up with it. The werewolf goons headed to harass Cami and she gave them the key to her uncle’s place and then exchanged a nod with Elijah through the window (side note: who knew scruff would make Elijah even hotter and more badass?). The werewolves were greeted by Marcel, who doused them with wolf’s bane and then began to chop off their hands, fingers and arms to get the rings away from them.
Meanwhile, Hayley was at the compound, waiting to greet the wolves Francesca sent after Klaus. She pulled off their rings, killing some, but she let Oliver live and warned him not to side against her again. With each ring removed, Klaus started to gain his strength back so he was waiting when the wolves came to attack him and he proceeded to use their blood to pain (I missed his psychotic smirk so much). Elijah went to the source and took out Francesca’s brothers, but she remained behind her door, thinking she was safe since he wasn’t invited in – except her house had been declared a landmark and imminent domain (“the devil’s in the details”).
Elijah took out the rest of the brothers, but Francesca got away. Hayley was waiting for her on the road and proceeded to kill her without batting an eye. Unfortunately, that didn’t make her feel any better about the loss of her baby and she went back to the compound and started to tear about the nursery. Elijah found her and tried to comfort her, but Hayley could tell that he was looking at her differently now and it made her feel like even more of a monster. Elijah asked Klaus to talk to her since he’s the only one who can truly understand how Hayley feels.
Obviously, my shipper heart took some hits in this episode. First, Klaus hiding from Cami because he knows she’s safer away from him and then Elijah and Hayley imploding. But angst is expected on any TV show and it’s expected even more on this one because these characters are way too messed up to just be happy. Marcel and Cami had a ‘friends with benefits’ thing going on, but Cami broke it off so she can get back to her normal life. Maybe it’s my Team Klaus bias talking, but I feel like all the heat Marcel and Cami had has been stripped away so I’m glad they nipped this in the bud fast.
While we’re on the subject of Marcel, first, I love that he still has Josh with him. Marcel is nothing if not loyal to his guys and Josh is technically the only one left. Second, I loved Marcel’s speech about why the fight for New Orleans is so important and how it’s not just over a few blocks of real estate like Josh suggested. One of my issues with this show has always been how it seems a bit silly that the oldest and most powerful vampires in the world would be so committed to one city, no matter how happy they’d been there at a given time. But Marcel’s explanation of his blood running through the gutters and the blood of his friends and the things that could happen there that couldn’t happen anywhere else – all of that got to me. Marcel insisted it’s not the city itself, but its soul that’s beautiful and powerful and worth fighting to keep safe.
Now let’s go back to Cami. She’s excited to devote herself to school once more and help people with their problems instead of fighting in supernatural wars. Unfortunately, Vincent (Finn) is her new advisor. Esther was pleased with her son for getting close to her so fast, which of course begs the question: why is the Original witch so interested in Cami? Is it her connection to Klaus or something more? We know the O’Connell family has been around the quarter for a very long time and they have a lot of supernatural secrets so I’m guessing there’s more to this than a way to get to Klaus.
As Esther and Finn commented on their current bodies, Kol came to join them and said that he was enjoying his – a guy named Kaleb, who we met earlier in the episode when he introduced himself to Davina and teased her about music. While this was probably supposed to be a major twist, I think a lot of fans guessed it pretty early on so it might not have had the huge impact the writers were going for. But that’s okay because anything that brings Kol back from the dead is a win in my book. And like Finn and Cami, I have questions. Is this Esther’s way of trying to control Davina since she left the coven? And if so, can Kol truly be trusted to carry out his mother’s plan or does he have a secret agenda of his own? He’s never been good at following the rules.
While I absolutely loved the teamwork takedown of the werewolves, my true favorite part of the episode was a quiet moment between Elijah and Klaus. The white oak stake is still missing and in a rare moment of self-awareness, Klaus admitted all of this was his fault because he was so desperate to be king and now Elijah’s life is in danger. Elijah reminded his brother that he survived 1,000 years with him so he can survive this too (I’m not crying – you’re crying). Seriously, this was beautiful because these brotherly moments where they’re not sniping at each other are far too rare.
All in all, this was a great season premiere and well worth the long hiatus. It tidied up the last big threat from season one and stressed the importance of family and blood and fighting for what matters most. I love that we got to see the entire Original family throughout the episode and I’m very much looking forward to seeing where they go from here. Now, it’s your turn. Hit the comments below and share your thoughts, feelings and theories with us!