Vampires and Witches and Hybrids, Oh, My!
Fans of the popular series, The Vampire Diaries, should be well pleased with the spin-off, and new TV show, The Originals, which sees the first vampire family, the Mikaelson’s, from later seasons of TVD, fight more-of-the-same in a new setting. It also brings the highly desirable Phoebe Tonkin, as Haley, into the spotlight too. I watched the entire series of The Vampire Diaries, in one sitting last year, which made for some interesting viewing, so, was looking forward to watching this show. I’m a bit older than your average fan, but it didn’t prevent me from getting enjoyment from watching, and The Originals, which appears to be better suited to a slightly older age demographic anyway.
I’m not sure how anyone who doesn’t know the set-up will take to this show, as the first episode, titled, Always and Forever, tries to squeeze in as much backstory as it can, and borders on being convoluted-sounding to the uninitiated, as I even struggled to follow all the explanations that were given, about their origins. Even so, it did at least try.
The Mikaelson trio are, Klaus, Elijah and Rebekah, played by Joseph Morgan, Daniel Gillies and Claire Holt. Elijah is looking for Klaus in New Orleans, where he believes he’ll find him. While looking, Elijah comes across a group of witches standing over another dead witch, and he’s recognised by the leader of the crowd, as being an “Original.” As he’s enquiring what has happened, the new vampire leader, Marcel (Charles Michael Davis), comes along, but Elijah is told he mustn’t be seen by Marcel, so hides on a nearby ledge.
Marcel asks the witch why Klaus is interested in finding the now dead one on the ground, but they won’t tell him, so he takes the body. Elijah eventually finds out Klaus is to become a father, after apparently doing the impossible, and impregnating Haley, a werewolf. Haley is being held by the witches, and until the “old ones” help them get rid of Marcel, she is going to suffer the consequences.
The first episode simply had too much to do, when it came to explaining how the “old ones,” The Originals, were the way the were, and it just didn’t manage it as well as I’d hoped, but well enough for The Vampire Diaries fans. I did, however, like the new setting they found themselves in, as it was, not only their old hang-out, but it was an ideal setting for witches and vampires to act out their tale.
It was reminiscent of the vamp classic Interview with a Vampire, in many respects, but without the budget, or writing. I found the writing pretty weak for the show, but the acting made up for some of the shortcomings, however, it might improve as the season progresses. I’ve only seen the first two episodes, and actually enjoyed both, but I hope it does get better, as there’s loads of room for improvement.
Review by Ed Blackadder, Lead Entertainment Writer
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