With so many unpredictable twists and such a lovable cast, Legacies is such an enjoyable series even if you were previously unfamiliar with the shared Vampire Diaries universe. But for those of us who did watch the flagship series and its first spin-off The Originals, Legacies is also a treasure trove of Easter eggs and references to our favorite characters and moments from the former CW dramas.
Legacies' first season was filled with nods to our fallen favorites like Stefan (Paul Wesley) and Klaus (Joseph Morgan), the reappearance of memorable items like Caroline's (Candice King) ballgown and reverse kyanite rings, and it built up the mythology of The Merge and nature's loopholes. While that was all fun and good, Season 2 raised the stakes (excuse our pun) with the returns of Freya Mikaelson (Riley Voelkel) and Kai Parker (Chris Wood), plus dozens of cheeky references for Vampire Diaries and Originals fans to pick up on.
As of now, Legacies Season 2 is on hiatus after production shut down amid the coronavirus outbreak, but the show is planning to resume production on the remaining Season 2 episodes later this year. In the meantime, you can check out all The Vampire Diaries and The Originals Easter eggs and references in Legacies Season 2 so far below.
• We still haven't gotten our Caroline Forbes return, but the Season 2 premiere confirmed she was still off living in Europe, searching for a way to help the twins avoid the Merge and getting Lizzie (Jenny Boyd) the help she needed over the summer break.
• When Josie (Kaylee Bryant) traveled to New Orleans in Episode 6, not only did TVD fans get a one-sided phone call with Caroline but Originals fans got a wall full of photos of their favorite characters when Josie looked in at Rousseau's.
• Of course, the best aspect of this NOLA trip was the very welcome return of Freya Mikaelson, who revealed that she and Keelin (Christina Moses) now have a son Nik, which is presumably short for Niklaus. We also got to see such an emotional Freya and Hope (Danielle Rose Russell) reunion, which has us wishing for more Originals cameos soon!
• In Episode 9, Hope made a casual reference to her old friend Vincent (Yusuf Gatewood), who once gave her advice on what to do about a mora miserium.
• And while this isn't a Vampire Diaries or Originals Easter egg, Episode 9 also showed us Lizzie and M.G. (Quincy Fouse) reading Crisis on Infinite Earths comics. This was a cute nod to The CW Arrowverse, which includes many TVD universe alums, including Stephen Amell, Rick Cosnett, and Chris Wood.
• Another TVD favorite got a shoutout in Episode 11 after Emma (Karen David) told Dorian (Demetrius Bridges) she needed to go help Caroline with the Merge problem, only for him to tell Emma that Caroline could call Bonnie (Kat Graham) instead.
• We also got a great little flashback to the video Kai recorded in The Vampire Diaries Season 6 in Episode 4 when M.G. needed the camera to film Lizzie and the then-invisible Sebastian.
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• Of course, that little glimpse of Kai was only the appetizer before the show served us Kai's full-blown return when the Saltzman's got trapped in the prison world with him in Episode 12. Seeing Kai again provided ample opportunities for the show to reference some of the heretic's signature moves, like singing karaoke and leaving video messages -- including one in which he shouted out Damon, Bonnie, and Katherine (Nina Dobrev). We also learned that not only has Kai's ruthlessness not changed since we last saw him, but neither has his love of Zima!
• There were a handful of other Bonnie and Bennett family references during Kai's two-episode stint on Legacies, including the fact that Bennett blood is key to escaping the prison world and Kai mentioning Bonnie's teddy bear, Ms. Cuddles, when Josie said she spelled the mora miserium to be invisible. And after Kai does get out prison world in Episode 13, he went searching for the ascendant which he found in a stuffed elephant, giving us yet another Ms. Cuddles reference. (This show, much like Bon Bon, just can't get enough Ms. Cuddles!)
• But as fun as it was having Kai back, the prison world episodes also reminded us of the pain he caused on Vampire Diaries when Alaric had to operate on Lizzie with the aid of a Laughlin clamp, which was invented by Jo (Jodi Lyn O'Keefe). Once the Saltzmans escaped the prison world, Alaric finally got his long overdue vengeance on Kai for killing Jo at their wedding by beheading everyone's favorite villain in Episode 13.
• All the Kai references weren't the only blasts from the past in the prison world episodes either. It was enjoyable to see the Salvatore Boarding House refitted to look like it looked on Vampire Diaries and the actress who played young Josie on TVD, Lily Rose Smith, also returned for flashback scenes at the school.
• After the trauma of the prison world and everything else the Salvatore students went through, in Episode 14 Emma sent them into a noir simulation which she likened to a chambre de chasse, a pocket dimension used multiple times on The Originals.
Caroline got another sweet shoutout when Josie explained in Episode 16 that her subconscious was a fairytale because her mom used to read them to her as bedtime stories.
• As Alaric pointed out, the spell Josie used to transfer her siphon ability into a coin in Episode 16 was the same spell her mother Jo used when she transferred her magic into a hunting knife to stop Kai from merging with her when they turned 22.
Legacies Season 1 is available to stream on Netflix.