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Thursday, August 3, 2017

'The Originals' S3 P2 BD: Crucial Issues at Stake






This review of the second half of  S3 episodes in the Warner Archive complete series S3 BD set of the CW teendram "The Originals" follows up on the recent post on S3 Part 1 episodes. These musings further wrap up a series of summer 2017 reviews of S1-S3 of the series ahead of the Archive complete S4 series BD review on August 29, 2017.

A brief recap of S3 P1 developments is that the return of "its complicated" faces from the distant past Lucien, Tristan, and Aurora complicate the 21st century New Orleans lives of the titular first-in-time Mikaelson vampire clan. Related drama comes in the form of a prophecy predicting deaths at the hands of friend, foe, and family. Topping this off is centuries-old bloodlust and other yearning for revenge by 100s of creatures of the night.

Even more so than is typical for CW shows of its ilk, the "Originals" S3 episodes that begin in early 2016 after a roughly two-month break are much more of a separate season than a continuation of the  preceding S3 ones.

S3 P2 picks up right after the S3 P1 cliffhanger that resolves the series-long "will they or won't they" plot involving 1,000 year-old Mikaelson family head Klaus and roughly 30 year-old human Cami. The pair apparently "has" but an unconscious Cami now has a very nasty neck wound; this suggests that Klaus is not a gentle lover.

The reality is that Cami is the victim of a love triangle that involves psychotic vampire Aurora; the aforementioned wound leads to Cami facing the choice of allowing herself to die or becoming one of the undead. This turn-of-events leads to Klaus getting revenge against Aurora, but anyone with even a passing familiarity with "Originals" knows that that resolution is not necessarily permanent.

Meanwhile, Lucien is doing his best to work black magic that is designed to give him an edge of the Mikaelson siblings. A related effort is a scheme to facilitate removing this family from the top of the vampire food chain.

These episodes also are notable for the series returning to its origins in a couple of ways. The hands-down best humor of the series comes via the core group discussing the aforementioned prophecy when Klaus strolls in announcing the arrival of an old friend. This visitor is from "Originals" parent program "The Vampire Diaries" and evokes thoughts of Chrissie from "Three's Company" visiting "The Ropers" to give her former landlord a disco lesson.

A road trip to the birthplace of V Nation soon follows with all the angst and bloodshed that are "Originals" trademarks. It is equally typical that this project requires the right mix of blood "type" and witch mojo to succeed.

The final S3 episodes further provide an especially strong vibe that the season finale may be the last episode of the series. Two relatively innocent "cats" seem to have exhausted the nine lives awarded to most regulars, the arguably most loyal ally of the central clan considers a literal backstabbing to be the knife that breaks the spine of that particular camel, Klaus receives his strongest ever proof of the meaning of the "Lear" quote regarding disloyal children and sharp serpents' teeth, and the writers end the season on a note that easily could be the final nail in the coffin for this series.

Archive enhances the awesomeness that is "Originals" S3 with a plethora of BD extras that include the always entertaining Comic-Con panel on the season, a feature on star Charles Michael Davis, and the compelling unaired scenes and amusing gag reel.