Klaus, Hayley, Hope and Marcel had a full day of familial bonding that leads to the penultimate moment when Hope freed her older brother from bondage. During this time, Freya and Keelin made it past the awkward flirting stage when Freya finally opened up about her feelings, while Vincent and Elijah had an eventful day murdering young girls and gaining new allies.
The Originals Season 4 Episode 7, “High Water and a Devil’s Daughter,” is the best gem Season 4 has produced. Similar to “Keepers of the House,” this episode does momentous work on all ends of the spectrum: character development, expanding and building relationships, plot progression, and even a bit of action. It seems this show has found their heart this season through the Marcel, Hayley, Klaus, and Hope dynamic, and it’s doing amazing work for their story-telling. I loved every moment.
This episode made leaps and bounds in Freya’s characterization and it was refreshing to see the wicked witch show cracks in her facade. She enlisted the king of sarcastic jokes, Josh, on her mission in this episode and their interactions showed Freya isn’t as cold as she pretends to be. Freya always claimed she does what she needs to do, but that doesn’t mean the victims of her brutality don’t affect her negatively. To be honest, I never really believed her.
Freya never seemed to hesitate when it came to using others as her tools, as we see with Elijah in this episode, so I honestly believed she would just lie herself into thinking she wasn’t the monster she really was. We saw her choose to thrive in her wicked witch role today, but not by choice — by her presumed need to be cold and vicious in order to save her family. She looked hurt when she had to remind Josh of why he shouldn’t be worried about her safety, and her interactions with Keelin following her death further this development.
Elijah’s interactions with Vincent also further proved his development… or should I regression? After being told he didn’t actually know the ritual like he thought he did, Elijah went out and murdered 4 young girls for a ritual that would reinstate the bond between New Orleans’ witches and the ancestors. What Elijah didn’t know and what Vincent was trying to tell him is that the ritual isn’t as simple as murdering a couple of girls and chanting with blood. If it weren’t for Davina’s partial presence in the ancestors’ plane, those girls would have been dead for good.
I want to say that would’ve affected Elijah, but I don’t really know at this point. Michael Narducci, the EP of The Originals, might have said Elijah’s horrible deeds chip away at his sanity, but it doesn’t seem like it does. It seems like the only thing that scares Elijah is not coming through to save his family. And although that makes him an admirable brother to an extent, it stunts his character tremendously. The read Vincent gave Elijah before they parted ways hit the nail on the head in regard to where Elijah’s person is now.
In order for Klaus to avoid being the devil, Elijah has taken all of the violence and evil onto himself. It’s a burden no one can bear, not even an Original with thousands of years of experience. It’s only a matter of time before Elijah cracks under the weight of “always and forever.”
Although Klaus struggles with breaking his old habits, we see his character development thriving with every episode. On this The Originals episode, we got to see Klaus teasing Hayley, worrying about Marcel’s entrapment in the basement (against his own instincts), and dropping his arrogant ego in a plea to Marcel. Who would have thought Klaus was capable of the sustained vulnerability we saw in this episode? Although we saw him decapitate Dominic and rip out the hearts of all his minions, he only did so after Dominic threatened Hope. Murdering out of need and not simply out of enjoyment is hilariously major growth for Klaus Mikaelson and I’m all the way here for it.
Expanding and New Relationships
I believe we can account a lot of Klaus’s development to his relationship with Hayley, Hope, and Marcel. Yes, Elijah taking on the burden of violence makes it easier for Klaus but Elijah has done this before. He has been his brother’s errand boy and minion in order to keep him from being completely irredeemable plenty of times; however, the difference in Klaus now lies mostly in Hayley’s influence on him.
There wasn’t much of a difference between Marcel and Hope. Both were his children, he raised both with love in his heart, and as we learned in this episode, he even tried to keep Marcel away from the violence. But this behavior didn’t stick. Don’t get me wrong, there is a chance Klaus might slide back into his old behavior now as he did when he was raising Marcel but something tells me Hayley won’t let that happen.
Klaus and Hayley understand each other better than any two characters on this show because they’re one in the same for reasons I’ve explained in previous episode reviews. However, Hayley’s monster has a leash, something she can teach Klaus how to do. This connection between them strengthened and fortified by the love of their daughter binds them to one another and makes them better people. This aspect in tandem with an example of what happens when he doesn’t keep his monster in check, namely Marcel, acts as a constant reminder of his failings as a father the first time. With Hayley, Hope, and Marcel’s influences on the old devil, I don’t think he’ll ever completely revert back to the psychopath he used to be.
Keelin has a similar effect on Freya that was shown in her speech at the end of the episode. Although Freya has reiterated time and time again she’s not a good person to Keelin (I mean did Keelin completely forget how they met and the days of torture afterward or?), Keelin still holds her to a higher standard — at least with her. Her quiet strength is exactly what Freya needs; after spending all day tearing herself apart to protect her family, she deserves someone she can go home to that can piece her back together. This realization spoken by Keelin finally made Freya let down all of her walls and try love again. It’s nice to see the human side of Freya after we’ve been shown her evils time and time again since her grave decision to damn Davina’s soul.
This new perspective is also true in regard to Marcel. Since the beginning of the season, all we’ve been witness to is Marcel’s anger, bitterness, and frustration. Hope brought out the Marcel I fell in love with in season 3 and humanized him for the audience again. We got to see inside Marcel’s head and affirm our suspicions that he could never hate Klaus.
We finally got to see brother and sister interact without intrusive eyes and defensive demeanor. It was absolutely everything. Hope shows her father’s courage and wit with her brother that had me smiling the entire time they were with one another. She’s incredibly perceptive and innocent. I’m glad Marcel got to keep those things intact while they were under attack. Seeing her and Marcel make the Mikaelson “always and forever pact” made my heart grow 3 sizes. And although Hayley, Hope, Klaus, and Marcel’s family might be far from conventional, this is the family dynamic I’ve been waiting for since we knew Hayley was pregnant with Hope.
I want to say that Vincent and Elijah’s interactions this episode were similarly heart-warming as the rest of the family’s, but that would be a lie. Elijah, honestly, didn’t seem to care about anything but the progress they made against the Hollow. And boy, did everyone make progress. Elijah caused an alliance with the old power that previously bound the Hollow. Freya found out how to access the last bone the Hollow needs to be resurrected. And Klaus killed the Hollow’s favorite priest, collected more lethal thorns, and reinstated his alliance with Marcel.
It seems this episode placed the Mikaelsons back on higher ground in this war, and it’s not looking too good for the Hollow. The Hollow was so threatened she had to take over Sofya’s body as protection. Although The Originals didn’t get any new clues as to who the Hollow is, the audience got two big and important ones: it’s a young girl that used to be a Crescent wolf. This information begs the question of whether “a Devil’s Daughter,” from the title, refers just to Hope or also the Hollow. We do know this information has high implications for Hayley, we just don’t know which ones yet.
Find out what happens next in the war between the Hollow and the Mikaelsons on the next episode of The Originals airing Friday on the CW at 8/7c.