The Originals recap: 'Wheel Inside the Wheel'
More of Esther's story is revealed as Klaus comes face-to-face with an important person from his past.
The smartest thing Julie Plec ever did was decide that Elijah Mikaelson—and then, his entire family—would be more than 1,000 years old. (And also, have a mother who’s a witch.) Because with that, comes endless stories full of delicious twists and turns. I mean, there’s now a wicked aunt roaming the world? And potentially another Original sibling? Just when you think this family has seen it all, there are more secrets, and of course, more members. Honestly, 1,000 is the new 30 when it comes to age, am I right? Let’s get to it!
Act One: Sister, Sister
We start with a flashback to the Kingdom of Norway in 972 A.D. There, we’re first introduced to Dalia—whom I’m calling the Wicked Witch of the West—otherwise known as the dark-haired older sister of Esther, the blond innocent Glinda, if you will. (Did you ever think I’d be calling Esther “Glinda”?) Apparently Esther gave up practicing magic when she wasn’t as good as her sister, and because of that, she’s come to her scary older sibling to ask for help with fertility issues. Dalia warns her that it requires sacrifice, but Esther doesn’t seem fazed.
Jump to present day, and Finn and Esther have decided to execute Oliver at midnight. For now, they’re simply spreading the word. And once they put out the e-vite—get it? An execution invite? I’m sorry—Finn heads off to meet with Cami while Esther catches up with Sleepy Beauty. Inside his little dungeon, Elijah is still having “visions of horror and dreams of love.” That is until Esther starts talking about how he was such an innocent and kind boy. And then? Like all parenting books tell you: After you compliment your child, you slit their throat and whisper a spell in their ear. Okay, so maybe “Glinda” was a little too kind. Let’s go with Wicked Witch of the East?
Also a fan of the blood spilling, Klaus is busy interrogating witches to try and find Elijah, but when he tells Hayley he won’t be needing her help on his journey, she heads straight to Plan B. If she can’t save Elijah, she will save Oliver (and then hope he knows where Elijah is). For that, she heads to Gia and Marcel to explain her plan. They will distract Finn while she rescues Oliver. Simple, yeah? Well, it will be. But first, she has an alpha to find.
Act Two: Mother Knows Best
With Klaus on his own, determined to save Elijah, the hybrid heads to the family’s old plantation, where he apparently buried his mother’s body. As he puts it, “Nothing says ‘I loathe you’ like desiccating a corpse.” But before he can light the coffin on fire, Elijah appears looking incredibly dapper in a suit. Only, he’s looking a little too dapper for a man fresh out of emotional hell, and Klaus realizes it. With that, Esther gets rid of the Elijah illusion—how can I get one?—and appears herself instead. She wants to talk, and she’s come armed with the most powerful weapon: the truth.
Esther informs Klaus that she’s busy making Elijah into the man he was meant to be, and she intends to do the same to Klaus. After several lifetimes of misery, she’s offering him an escape. However, she changes her preachy tune when Klaus lets it slip that not only is The Destroyer back in town, but Kol has known about it for a while. Suddenly, Esther is all “we” this and “we” that when it comes to taking down Mikael. However, she assures her son that Mikael was not always a demon.
In another flashback, we get to meet Freya, the first born Mikaelson daughter, and arguably Mikael’s favorite. Right around here is the time that present-day Esther drops a bomb on Klaus: She’s ready to tell him the truth about his real father. After reminiscing about the time Klaus strangled her, she tells him the story of her relationship with his real father. After Freya was killed by the plague, Mikael was beside himself with grief, and when he shut her out, she turned to another.
When Klaus asks why his real father never claimed him, Esther swears that he loved Klaus and that it was her decision that Klaus never know his true father. She was scared of Mikael’s rage if he ever learned the truth. That, and with Klaus’ birth, Mikael’s spirits were renewed. After that, they had Kol and Rebekah and Henry. They were a family again. And now? She offers to put Klaus into the body of a werewolf. And when he turns her down, she snaps his neck.
In a dream state, much like the one Elijah’s currently chilling in, Klaus relives the moment he found his real father’s body. Apparently Mikael decided to put daddy on a stick… literally. After seeing his dead father’s face, Klaus wakes up, and Esther lets him go. She claims that once Elijah wakes up, he’ll be ready to make his own decision. They’re both free (for now).
NEXT: Hello, father
Act Three: Alpha
Hayley’s mission to rescue Oliver takes her out into the bayou to reunite with Jackson, whose hair is just as long and glorious as when we last saw him. And now, he has found a friend in Ansel, the Katniss of the werewolf pack. Hayley tries to convince Jackson to return and save Oliver, but instead, she’s stuck with Katniss, who really doesn’t like it when witches kill wolves.
So with Hayley on her way back to get Oliver, Marcel still needs to find a way to distract Finn, so it’s a good thing Cami has finally caught onto Vincent’s schemes. At Kieran’s Red Room of Pain, Marcel tells Cami the truth—Finn Mikaelson is her adviser. Also, they need her to distract him while Hayley saves Oliver. Cami is in.
With her short hair bouncing from side to side, Cami heads to meet Finn at a bar while Marcel and Gia keep watch outside. As for Hayley and Ansel? Well, they find Oliver, but seconds later, they’re surrounded by wolves. Then Ansel decides that Hayley’s not allowed to kill wolves, but he is? I’m sorry, who died and made you king?
Long story short, Cami nearly stabs Finn before realizing that the knife she’s holding is not her most powerful weapon. One flutter of those eyelashes and Finn seems to be hooked. As for Marcel and Gia, they’re both bitten when they go up against the Goliath of all wolves, but thankfully, Marcel still has some of Klaus’ blood to cure them. And Hayley, well, she and Oliver manage to get out alive after Ollie gives a great “we were gonna be a pack” speech to Aiden and his crew. The bad news? By the time Oliver and Hayley get to Jackson, the spell still kills Oliver, but not until after he gives one final “go be the alpha” pep talk to Jackson.
As for Katniss? Well, he’s Klaus’ birth father! I have to be honest, I totally saw it in the flashback, wig and all. But it’s still so good.
Although Klaus thinks it’s one of Esther’s tricks at first, Ansel assures him he’s real. But somebody probably should’ve warned Ansel of Klaus’ major daddy issues, because all Klaus has to say is, “For all I care, you can crawl back to hell.” Yeah, we’ll work on that later. For now, Klaus has his hands full with his mommy issues. After finding Elijah, Esther returns to tell him that his father coming back is her doing—she pulled him over before the Other Side collapsed. And now? She wants to offer Klaus the gift of having his real father and of living out his days as a wolf with him. So why can’t he let go of his hatred?
Well, probably because not too long ago, Esther showed up in town to kill his daughter. Strangling his mother once more, Klaus promises that he will make her suffer for declaring war on his family. But when Esther says she had to, we get a final flashback telling us why: Remember when Dalia said Esther’s fertility would require sacrifices? Specifically, Esther promised Ms. West every first born of every generation of her family. First up, that meant giving her Freya and lying to Mikael about the plague. And now, that means giving her Hope. And if Dalia doesn’t get Hope? Well, expect her and her flying monkeys to come after the entire Mikaelson clan. Wait, does this mean we get all the Mikaelson family members on one team?!?!
(Also, Klaus, I know you don’t care, but don’t put a bloody Elijah on those nice sheets. You know he wouldn’t want it that way.)
So what does this all mean? We can pretty much guarantee we’ll see Dalia again at this point, but could Freya still be alive? I know she was a “sacrifice,” but we also thought Ansel was dead until an hour ago. Also, we probably didn’t think he’d be called “Ansel” of all things. The writers are really sticking to this dark-and-twisty fairytale theme, aren’t they? Either way, it’s working because every week comes with a new twist (or three), and the only thing better than three twists are three twists in the form of three new family members.
Finally, switching things up a bit this week, the Elijah Moment of the Week goes to baby Finn for that adorable cry when crazy aunt Dalia almost took him.
But before you go, we’ve also got an update on the new Originals web series, which will eventually tie into this year’s mid-season finale:
The Originals: The Awakening recap: In part 1 of the web series, we’re introduced to yet another story of New Orleans, only this one is all about a war between the witches who sided with Klaus at the time, and the others—like Mary-Alice Claire—who sided with Kol. So far, all we know is that Kol wants to get rid of Klaus’ witches… and then get rid of Klaus.