THE MAP OF MOMENTS
The mid-season finale “The Map of Moments” was jam packed with family reunions, romance, surprise twists and of course lots of holiday cheer. No doubt, however, there is bound to be some controversy over some of the twists (particularly the Rebekah one), but I say more power to the writers for being original – especially since Claire Holt’s too busy at the moment with other projects (wouldn’t you jump on the opportunity to star opposite David Duchovny in a TV show if you had the chance?).
THE SPELL OF VENGEANCE
The episode begins at Christmastime 1914 with Kol, Mary-Alice Claire and Astrid inside a mansion putting together a spell so they can steal the paragon diamond which will in turn help them create a dagger to temporarily paralyze Klaus. It’s always fun seeing the original Kol in all his devious glory. Kol leaves the mansion behind with instructions for Mary-Alice and Astrid to meet him in the cemetery. Unfortunately, he bumps into Klaus and Marcel outside who reveal they have figured out his plan! So Klaus works with another witch who traps Mary-Alice and Astrid inside the mansion…forever!
The rest of the Christmas flashback plays like a clever twist as Kol tells Davina his story throughout the episode. As he spins his yarn, the two snoop so they can find the paragon diamond in present day. The two are still intent on creating a dagger spell after all. But Kol is able later to simply get the Fauline diamond back with basic leverage. By helping with everyone’s plan to take down Esther, they give him the diamond. It’s a fair trade.
In the past, Kol brings Rebekah in on his plan to dagger Klaus. But in the end she betrays him by telling Klaus and Marcel of his full plan. They dagger him, leaving him in a coffin for centuries; but he later gets his vengeance against Rebekah only to be revealed at the end of the episode.
A FAMILY REUNITED
Rebekah and Elijah wait at the safe house with baby Hope for Klaus and Hayley to arrive. Meanwhile, they share a heart to heart as Rebekah reveals she’s worried about him, especially since he continues to act unstable. And as they wait for them to arrive, Rebekah builds a bonfire to bring back an old Mikaelson holiday tradition (where each of them writes down their wishes only to burn them for luck).
Soon after, Klaus and Hayley finally arrive. Hayley runs out of the car, joyous to finally see her little girl in what turns into a perfect moment. She runs to Elijah who holds baby Hope. He gently hands Hope over to her adoring mother. Klaus quickly joins in to kiss and hold his baby, their little family reunited at last! It’s a sweet moment.
Klaus reveals the truth behind Esther’s plan and the curse surrounding all first-borns, while Rebekah convinces them all to join in on the old Mikaelson tradition. They agree so Hope can have her first “bonfire season.”
Each of them works on a wish and burns it in the fire. The four of them with baby Hope take a beautiful selfie together with an old Polaroid camera representing one moment of true happiness. But like their wishes, they must burn it in case the photo was to fall into the wrong hands. Upset, Rebekah announces that they’ve earned this happiness and is going to take their mother down.
CAMI CONFRONTS THE ENEMY
The “team” (Davina, Kol and Marcel) unite at the compound to save Cami as Davina and Kol work on a spell to keep Esther from putting Rebekah inside of her body. Restless with what may be her final hours alive, Cami convinces Marcel to let her confront Finn. She wants to see if Finn will listen to her or even call off his mother Esther.
However, her talk with Finn proves pointless as he remains immovable in his convictions. He tells her that she’s “compassionate” and that it is really her “fatal flaw” which will ultimately be her downfall. He then reveals that he will not fall for Camille’s “beauty” or her “empathy,” further deepening the writers’ decision to turn Cami into the “Beauty” character from the Beauty and the Beast archetypal story. Cami quickly figures out she can’t reason with him when he reveals his extremist views. He believes in right and wrong with no grey in-between and does not believe in redemption. So if she chooses to side with the vampires, he will have no problem destroying her. She tells Marcel to lock him back up in the coffin.
A NEW ALLIANCE
In the Bayou, Esther seeks out Mikael where she finds him tearing apart a werewolf. They have a quick reunion – with a little violence thrown in – as they decide to discuss their children together. This alliance should prove to be quite frightening in future episodes since they’ve clearly decided to “off” Klaus as the loving parents they are. But will these two become romantic again? Certainly Mikael sees himself as still being married to her. At this point, they seem almost hateful toward each other. But love and hate is a thin line…
The beginning seeds of the plan to take down Esther are planted during a quiet moment between Elijah and Rebekah. He reveals how he was tempted by Esther’s own plan saying, “this is the beauty of Mother, Rebekah – sometimes even her darkest deeds possess a logic that is difficult to refute.” He then continues to say that perhaps all mother needs is a win – a “simple majority.” So what if Rebekah was to accept her offer?
With the seed now firmly planted inside Rebekah’s mind, she later announces after the family’s bonfire that she’s going to take the deal while taking Esther down with her.
The plan is to have Kol distract her, while Rebekah agrees to Esther’s plan face to face while she puts her own blood sneakily into Esther’s drink. Of course with the hope that Esther’s spell will be stopped before Rebekah is forced to body jump. But if they lose, they can always put Rebekah back inside her body when she’s old and wrinkly. In a way, even if Rebekah loses she has a chance at the life she’s always wanted.
With Kol bringing the white oak stake back to their mother, he’s able to regain her trust. Or so he thinks. But trouble is afoot. Esther plans to destroy Rebekah’s original body, which wasn’t revealed earlier as part of Esther’s plan to Rebekah. Not only that, she’s joined forces with Mikael to kill Klaus. Horrified, Rebekah wants out. But it’s too late. The spell has already started. Klaus shows up to play his part (even offering to take Rebekah’s place) and “kills” Esther while Davina chants a spell protecting Cami and Rebekah. But is it all too late? Do they succeed? While Cami awakens safe inside her body, Rebekah remains asleep. Unfortunately, Rebekah body jumped. So the Mikaelson family puts her original body in a coffin for safe-keeping.
With a nice little twist, Klaus meets Esther, who wakes up from death to discover that she didn’t body jump. Instead, she’s in transition. Klaus smugly announces that she can either choose to be a vampire (the thing she hates) or die. But she can no longer be a witch. It’s quite a genius plan actually. We’re left wondering what her choice will be…
With Kol proving more calculating than ever, he earns the ultimate win for the episode. He gets the paragon diamond so he can now create the dagger spell, the white oak stake back (albeit briefly), his mother out of the way – for now, kisses Davina for the first time and gets his vengeance against Rebekah for her Christmas betrayal by handpicking her body which has been trapped inside the same mansion that previously entrapped his friends. So the episode ends with Rebekah waking up inside her new body as she screams for help to be let out of the creepy mansion! A shocking twist for sure – though not altogether surprising with Claire Holt’s schedule. But with Rebekah’s body intact, there’s every chance we’ll see Claire Holt back in the future. For now, as Kol says, it’s the best day he’s had in two centuries.
Looks like he might be right…
Marcel, I am hours away from someone taking control of my body. I highly suggest you avoid trying to control me between now and then. – Cami argues putting Marcel in his place
Finn: I will not be tempted by your beauty, nor will I be blinded by your empathy.
Cami: You don’t leave a girl much wiggle room. I would appeal to your morals, but those seem to be all over the map.
Finn: I’m not the one who was sleeping with one vampire while half in love with another.
“It’s a peculiar thing never to be tired yet forever exhausted with the sameness of things.” – Elijah says philosophically to Rebekah while he thinks about the never-ending war going on his family.
“I wish you would tell Elijah you’re marrying your werewolf suitor, at which point I will pour him a scotch and congratulate him on the bullet he dodged.” – Klaus reveals teasingly to Hayley
Rebekah: Do you think you can cram us into a selfie?
Elijah: Well, Niklaus is the virtuoso of cramming his siblings into confined spaces.
Klaus: I’m so glad I traveled hundreds of miles to visit my mentally ill brother, only to have him insult me to my face.
(A little holiday sibling arguing…)
Esther: When I didn’t hear from you, I thought you might be in trouble.
Kol/Kaleb: Nope. No trouble. Just hard to do espionage when you’re calling mummy all the time. So where’s Finn? Is he off playing emperor to his merry pack of dogs?
“You can’t possibly expect me to discuss giving up eternal life over tea.” – Rebekah snarkily tells her mother.
“Remember how I said that Rebekah had done me a solid back in 1914? Swore she hadn’t told Klaus that I was taking the diamond back? I was actually being a bit facetious.” – Kol to Davina about Rebekah’s betrayal
“So now you either be the thing you hate the most, or you can be dead. Your choice, which is more than you ever gave us.” – Klaus tells Esther, leaving her to mull over whether to become a vampire or simply die.
HAYLEY, ELIJAH AND THE STANDOUT ROMANTIC MOMENT
While there was a great little moment and a first kiss between Davina and Kol, this week’s standout romantic moment belongs to Hayley and Elijah. After months of tension, the two finally come back together! The scene begins with Hayley telling Elijah her wish – that he will understand what she has to tell him. From there, Hayley announces to a heartbroken Elijah that she has to marry Jackson to save her wolves.
In an attempt to end whatever it is between them, she walks away. But Elijah grabs her and pulls her in for a passionate kiss only to tell her to marry Jackson.
He then reveals his wish for her – that she will do whatever she needs to, to bring her daughter home.
She then kisses him in return and they sleep together for what we can assume to be the first time. This spells trouble for the Hayley/Jackson marriage for sure…
THOUGHTS AND QUESTIONS
There was a lot going on in this episode with the promise of new stories to come. When we first met Finn on The Vampire Diaries, he seemed almost kind and compassionate. But now we learn he’s actually quite an extremist in his views of right and wrong with no room or belief for redemption, even making up his own rules of morality for himself. So what does this mean for the future of his story arc? Unlike the rest of the vampires who struggle with the beast within (while also longing for goodness and humanity), Finn is not a character who can be swayed by compassion and romantic feelings. So this makes him more dangerous than even Klaus ever was. He has his beliefs and will never be swayed from them. It should be interesting to see what he does next.
As for the actress change in Rebekah, I’ve seen a lot of anger and hate online toward the writers. But is it really their fault the actress has chosen to seek out other projects? They released her with the option to come back periodically. I think personally what the writers are doing is quite creative and am interested in seeing this new interpretation, though of course Claire Holt will always be the original Rebekah! That said, perhaps I’m not that shocked with new faces playing the same character since I’m a huge Doctor Who fan…So what’s your reaction to the change? Remember, they still have her original body so if Claire Holt ever wants to return (she can always return in flashbacks for now) the option is on the table…I say let’s embrace the fantastic story the writers are telling.
Do you think Esther will choose to become a vampire? I think inevitably that’s the choice she will make. Together, she and Mikael can be monsters while they come up with a plan to “save” their children and kill Klaus.
Well, what did you think of “The Map of Moments?” Let me know in the comments!
Stay tuned for when I recap the next episode!
Photo Credit: CW
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