Is Klaus the villain — the big, bad hybrid who terrorizes his family and everyone around him — or is he simply misunderstood?

In Episode 7 (“Bloodletting”) of The Originals, we got a glimpse of the Klaus fans of The Vampire Diaries have come to know. He can be cruel — in fact, he’s a downright monster sometimes — but underneath his hard exterior, he just wants the family his father never allowed him to have. OK, so Klaus’s definition of family is a bit skewed (he thinks it’s a bunch of people who he can boss around), but it’s a family unit nonetheless. Despite his tenacity, he’s scared of the unknown.

Of course, that doesn’t excuse Klaus’s heinous acts, but it does shed light on the hybrid, who, up until this point, was pretty much a grade-A “douchenozzle” on The Originals. It also makes us feel bad for him because at the end of “Bloodletting,” it seems like everyone has abandoned Klaus — and everyone is looking for a way to bring him down, even his baby sister Rebekah, who has teamed up with her former flame Marcel. (This all feels like Season 3 of The Vampire Diaries, no?)

Marcel not only managed to sweep Rebekah off her feet with a unfinished floorplan of their dream home, but he also convinced her to help him destroy Klaus once and for all. Since Klaus cannot be killed (if he is, his entire bloodline will go with him), Marcel has another plan: bury him in his Garden — aka the place he once envisioned his future with Rebekah. Gross much?

However, the weight of her decision doesn’t really hit until Klaus, upset over his row with Elijah, tells Rebekah that she’ll have to be his partner in crime now that their brother has been brainwashed by Hayley. But Rebekah clearly has her own motives for working with Klaus — bringing him closer to Marcel’s trap.

After centuries of heartbreak — and 90 years dessicated in a box — we can’t blame Rebekah for wanting her revenge on Klaus. And it’s completely in character for her to fall for a smooth-talker like Marcel. After all, her naiveté led Marcel right to their doorstep. I’m not doubting Marcel’s affections for Rebekah, but this is war, and Marcel knows what kind of game he’s playing.

But Rebekah isn’t the only Mikaelson betraying her brother. Elijah, too, has chosen his side — and he’s chosen Hayley… and the baby, of course.

When Hayley is taken from their home, it’s Elijah who is hellbent on saving her, and Klaus notices this sudden change in his brother. After confronting Marcel at fight night — aka where Marcel’s nightwalker minions compete in for the chance to be part of his inner circle and score a shiny daylight ring — the brothers realize it wasn’t Marcel who kidnapped Hayley.

To prove his innocence in the matter, Marcel allows Sabine to perform a locator spell for Klaus and Elijah. This leads them to a place deep in the bayou, but what Klaus finds is actually the scent of Tyler Lockwood, his first hybrid and sworn enemy. Klaus and Tyler have a complicated history. Long story short: Klaus turned Tyler into a hybrid against his will, forcing him to join his hybrid army and losing his free will, but thanks to some help from Hayley, Tyler found a way to break free of Klaus’s compulsion. However, before he can help free the other hybrids, Hayley tells Klaus the plan and Klaus kills his entire army — except for Tyler. Seeking revenge for his betrayal, Klaus murders Tyler’s mother. (Are you sensing a theme, yet? Klaus doesn’t handle betrayal well.) Needless to say, Tyler has a reason to want revenge.

(Oh, and there was also a brief mention of Caroline, Tyler’s then-girlfriend who Klaus fell in love with. There wasn’t nearly enough Caroline references in this reunion if you ask me.)

So what does Tyler want with Hayley? He wants to prove a theory, natch. It seems like all the werewolves in the bayou have been gossiping about Hayley’s hybrid baby — and how she’s not only going to bring the end to all witches, but she’s also going to destroy the vampire race, too. Geez, this baby sure has one hell of an agenda! Of course, it’s a bit more complicated than that.

The hybrid’s baby blood, which shares 50 percent of Klaus’s DNA, can be used to sire hybrids. For those of you who don’t watch The Vampire Diaries, this is a very big deal. All Klaus ever wanted was a hybrid army to call his family — people who were just like him, half vampire and half werewolf. Tyler is convinced Klaus knew he could use the babies blood to sire hybrids, and to prove his point, he goes all psycho on Hayley and sticks a needle in her belly. (Yeah, he seriously went there.)

He then injects the baby’s blood into one of Hayley’s distant relatives, Dwayne. (It appears that her family’s endangered pack has been hiding out in the bayou.) The newborn hybrid takes his first bite out of Hayley, and he’s able to complete his transition. (Seriously, Tyler? You’re going to torture a pregnant woman. You’re better than this.)

Tyler may have been able to create a hybrid, but we have one very big question: how? Isn’t part of the hybrid mythology that they can’t be created without the blood of the doppelganger? Tyler didn’t have a doppelganger — plus, Elena is now a vampire and Katherine’s blood has been infected with the cure — so how did Dwayne become a hybrid? Perhaps the baby has some sort of mystical blood that bypasses all of that doppelganger nonsense. Or maybe Hayley is a doppelganger — please, TV gods, no more doppelgangers! Either way, that bit of the plot was very confusing.

But I digress. Tyler is so convinced Klaus is going to use the baby to create his vampire army, he decides that the only way he can stop Klaus is by KILLING THE BABY. Luckily, Hayley knows how to protect herself from psycho creeps and manages to escape, where she runs into Elijah. (These two just need to make-out already.)

Tyler, however, doesn’t get off so easily. Klaus finds him and the two go head-to-head — more like fist-to-fist — but Tyler seems to have forgotten that the only way to kill Klaus is with a white oak stake. Suddenly, it becomes apparent that this was a suicide mission for Tyler; he wants to die. Unfortunately for Tyler, Klaus isn’t going to give him that satisfaction, so he lets him live.

This move, however, was a bit of a tactical error on Klaus’s part. Doesn’t he know the saying, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”? Tyler goes to Marcel with his intel: Klaus is going to use his hybrid army again Marcel and his vampires. It looks like these two are going to make quite the dynamic duo.

As for Elijah, well, he made the mistake of believing Tyler. When he questions Klaus about his true intentions for the baby, Klaus feels attacked. How could his brother side with the wolf and not him? How could Hayley side with Elijah and not him? Clearly, Klaus feels like the lesser brother, the lesser son… the big, bad hybrid who only cares about himself.

Klaus leaves his brother and Hayley in rage, but before departing, he leaves Elijah with a parting gift: a bite. A hybrid’s bite can kill a normal vampire, but for an Original, it will cause extreme hallucinations. After Klaus’s dramatic exit, Elijah feels bad. Maybe he should have trusted his brother. Maybe he didn’t know the baby blood could create hybrids. (Klaus did look pretty shocked upon the realization!)

As if things for Klaus couldn’t get any worse, he also loses his informant on the other side, Josh. It seems Marcel spotted Josh on the Mikaelsons’ property, but instead of killing him, he decides to compel him. But first, Davina needs to give him a voodoo-lobotomy.

Things aren’t looking good for Klaus. He’s lost everyone — his sister, his brother, his informant, and even Cami despises him — and Tyler’s reappearance has only reminded him of how badly he failed at creating his army.

“My wickedness is self-preservation,” he tells Rebekah. But what kind of life can you live without family, Niklaus?  

$#*! The Originals Say

“It appears we’ve interrupted a collection of filthy amateurs.”

“Not the most attractive community, are they?”

“You’re shacked up in a mansion with that psycho.”

“We had a pretty high quota of douchenozzles.”

“I sampled what she has to offer, and let me tell you, she is exquisite.”

“What makes you think I’m afraid to die?”

“Klaus Mikaelson, killer of men, women, and puppies.”

“I’m a witch. I’m not Amish.”

“Death offers more peace than you deserve.”

“Standing besides the noble Elijah, how can I be anything but the lesser brother — a liar… a bastard.”

“We both know this family can barely survive without me.”

Crystal Bell is an editor at Wetpaint Entertainment and our resident fangirl for all things The Vampire Diaries. Follow her on Twitter and Google+!