The Originals 1.02 “House of the Rising Son” Review

A tv review article by: Shawn Hill

You're not going to believe this. Klaus is the exposition fairy this week. Klaus, of all people. And he does it twice, once in a flashback to where Marcel really came from (and showing us why Klaus, not usually your primary defender of wounded birds – or is he? – cares about him at all). And a second time to reveal he actually had a reason to dagger Elijah for once. It wasn't a good one, but that he had one at all takes it far above his usual reflex actions concerning his family.

With Elijah out of the picture, Rebekah blows into town on a tear. Her only goal is to help her good brother, but when she reaches their old and untouched house, she finds Hayley already there. They don't meet cute, but Rebekah's in a remarkably charitable mood since her happily sensual summer, and besides she needs help finding the coffin.

Along the way, she kills many of Marcel's minions (when are they gonna learn this is one girl you don't want to rough up in a biker bar, especially when there are convenient pool cues to be had?), considers offing Hayley (who's kinda suicidal herself at the moment), and is willing to tear through the witches as well. Only she listens to them, and she also listens to Marcel when he shows up to say hi and pretend he's not freaking out about the sudden onset of Mikaelsons in their old (and his current) hunting grounds.

Turns out Klaus witnessed Marcel being whipped as a child by a slave-owner, and took poorly to it. Klaus also took poorly to Rebekah's ante-bellum swain, throwing him over a banister for his effrontery, but it's different with Marcel. He relates to the little (then un-named) chap because of his own abuse by his step-father. So, of course, being Klaus, his act of mercy creates the monster Marcel has become.

The trickiness of what that means for Rebekah (another paramour betrayal, definitely) is complicated, and one must hand it to Claire Holt. I initially wondered how convincing any young ingénue could be playing a millennial vampire, but you know what? She's been hitting every mark of that good little sister who listens to her older brothers as she should, until the last century or so when she noticed how the human girls have started speaking up for themselves and their own agendas more than in centuries past.

It all leads back to Marcel's little witch Davina, where we get Rebekah rushing in where fools fear to tread, and channeling this show's first real Buffy-esque moment. Rebekah comes at tiny Davina like Buffy encountering Glory for the first time, and gets her ass handed to her for the trouble. Not only is she bodily removed from the scene, her memory is screwed with to the extent she can't even remember where it happened. VD witches are sneakier than the Buffy-versions.

And this is when we (and Hayley and Rebekah, now tentative soul sisters) learn that Klaus had a plan all along, that involved turning some of Marcel's potential lieutenants and trading him Elijah in exchange for their uneasy truce. Yeah, nice try Klaus, but now you're in the same place as the witches, who thought you could help cope with a problem like Davina.

Shawn Hill knows two things: comics and art history. Find his art at

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