For a series only on its fifth episode, The Originals is one of the most compelling shows on TV. Is it perfect? No, of course not. But was Episode 5 (“Sinners and Saints”) an hour of incredible television? Yes. It not only challenged its viewers, but it flipped every character on his or her head, revealing surprising new motivations — and that was what made “Sinners and Saints” so brilliant.
Forget everything you thought you knew about The Originals. The war brewing in the French Quarter isn’t for power at it — it’s for family. (Funny how things come full circle, amirite?) Davina wasn’t the weapon of mass destruction we thought she was, and Sophie wasn’t the victim we thought she was in Episode 1. It turns out the entire reason for this epic battle of tug of war is Davina — she’s not only the witches’ only hope for keeping their magic, but she’s also Sophie’s last chance to get her niece back.
It turns out eight months ago, Davina was one of four teenage witch sacrifices chosen to help the witches strengthen their ties to their ancestors. Over times, those ties start to weaken, and therefore, so does their magic. In order to restore their power, the witches hold a “Harvest” every three centuries. The Harvest is essentially a sacrifice. To be chosen is an honor — or at least that’s what Davina and the others, including Jane-Anne’s daughter and Davina’s best friend, were told. However, Sophie — who was a total wild child who regularly hooked up with Marcel (surprise!) — thought it was all a myth.
In reality, the Harvest turns into a bloodbath, as each teen is brutally slaughtered at the altar. (They were told they would be put into a “peaceful slumber” until they were resurrected during the “Reaping.”) Needless to say, this would explain why Davina has trust issues. So why did Davina survive?
In an attempt to save her niece from what she thought was a pointless ritual, Sophie goes to Father Kieran, the then-king of the French Quarter, to see if there was anything he could do. However, Father Kieran had recently undergone a family tragedy of his own — his nephew Sean had recently had a mental breakdown and slaughtered his fellow seminary students. (Cami may have suspected the vampires, but it was the witch Sabine who put a hex on her twin brother Sean and drove him mad in order to distract Father Kieran from the Harvest.) So Father Kieran asks Marcel and the vampires to intervene.
Halfway through the ritual, Marcel and his vampire take down the witches and try to free Davina and Sophie’s niece. Unfortunately, it’s too late for the little Deveraux after Sabine cuts her throat to try and complete the Harvest. But Marcel is able to save Davina from the madness. (Side note: Davina’s immense power is a side effect of the ritual. After each slaying, the power from one girl was transported to the other, meaning that Davina has the power of all four witches in her system.)
Now, this explains why Marcel is so protective of Davina and visa versa — as he explains to Klaus, they’re kindred spirits. Davina is to Marcel what Marcellus is to Klaus. They were all children who went through immense trauma.
At this point, it’s hard to call Marcel a villain. Sure, he oppressed the witches, but it was at Davina’s request. She was just a scared little girl. And yes, he killed Jane-Anne, but he was trying to protect Davina. As long as the witches are able to practice magic, they can find Davina and finish the Harvest. She’s their last sacrifice. The Harvest cannot be completed until Davina is killed. And if the witches wait too long, their magic will disappear and the other three girls would have died for nothing. But we don’t blame Davina for not wanting to go through with it. If the witches lied to her once, who’s to say it won’t happen again?
But what about Sophie? At first, Sophie appeared to be the victim. She brought the Originals here to help her take down Marcel, but what she really needed them to do was find Davina. She promised Jane-Anne she would find Davina and complete the sacrifice even if she had to “slit Davina’s throat [herself].” Why is Sophie so eager to help complete the Harvest now? Because it’s the only way she’ll get her niece back. At the time of the Reaping (when the ancestors restore the witches’ powers), the four sacrifices will be reborn.
So the real war is between Sophie and Marcel — and Davina and the Originals seem to be caught in the middle of it all. Since Sophie’s life is linked to Hayley’s, then she might have the upperhand when it comes to using the Originals. However, Klaus is still hungry for power, so who knows what game he’ll start playing to become the king of the Quarter. Will he side with Sophie? Will Elijah side with his new confidante Davina? And what about Marcel? He may want to keep Davina safe, but that doesn’t mean he has the most powerful witch at his disposal.
The episode also marked the return of Elijah — aka the Original vamp in the suit — and oh my, have I missed you. As much as I love Rebekah and Klaus for their humor and vulnerability, no one can command a scene quite like Elijah. Unlike his temperamental brother, Elijah’s interaction with Davina was soft and sweet. Here’s hoping Rebekah disposed of those white ash daggers indefinitely.
However, I’m intrigued by the deal he made with the teenage witch. Elijah promised Davina he would help her control her powers with his mother’s grimoires. (Davina, you lucky witch.) But in exchange for what? Did she promise not to help Marcel kill the Originals? Or was there something else at play here?
Also, his reunion with Hayley was filled with romantic potential. It’s clear Elijah wants to protect Hayley and the baby because they're his family (and his one chance to redeem Klaus), but that slap Hayley gave him upon his return spoke volumes. These two have serious sparks, which is a good thing considering Hayley really needs to be brought into the main plot again. (Also of note, Rebekah and Hayley’s friendship is really quite adorable. It nice to see Rebekah finally have a friend who has no reason to deceive her. She wouldn’t ruin her pricey boots for just anyone, Hales!)
As for Klaus, well, my favorite hybrid also needs some help in the character development department. Don’t get me wrong: I love Klaus, but if you’re a non-TVD viewer, Klaus really hasn’t proven himself worthy of such devotion. In fact, what has he really done? He needs more emotional depth, and as much as it pains me to say this, Cami might be the perfect character for him to interact with more. Is he using her? Or does he really feel for her and her family tragedy?
It looks like that’s a storyline for another week, Originals fans. Right now, Klaus and Elijah need to worry about protecting this baby before Sophie does something drastic.
$#*! The Originals Say
“You’re the one they call honorable.” — Elijah still knows how to make an entrance.
“Well, up until this morning I had a mystical dagger in my chest, so I believe I’m going quite well.” — Good to see he hasn't lost his humor either.
“I grow to love this child by the second.” — Klaus, being his typical sarcastic self.
“Could you two be more idiotic?” — Rebekah is just keeping it real.
“According to the dreadful signage, it’s Big Auggie’s Bayou Bar.” — Klaus should have known something was up when Marcel asked him to meet there.
“Is that what you want? To be normal?” — Elijah, stop being so perfect. (Actually, don't.)
“And now that we’ve established that I’m a failure as a sister and a friend and as an Original…” — Poor Rebekah.
“It’s not exactly like she’s besties with them.” — Marcel has been spending too much time with Davina.
“I haven’t seen him this lushy since the ‘20s.” — Lots of Originals humor in this episode.
“I’ve given up on giving up.” — Breaking: Elijah is still perfect.
“If you were so strong then you wouldn’t have run away from New Orleans like a little bitch all those years ago.” — Aww, snap! Marcel, do you have daddy issues?
“Don’t make promises you can’t keep… Welcome home.” — The slap heard round the world.
Catch the next episode of The Originals on Tuesday, November 5, 2013, at 8 p.m. ET on The CW, followed by Supernatural.