[WARNING: The following story contains spoilers from Monday's episode of The Originals. Read at your own risk.]
A beloved character on The Originals has died and his killer is only getting started.
On Monday's heartbreaking episode, Aidan (Colin Woodell) met his demise after Dahlia (Claudia Black) killed him to frame Klaus (Joseph Morgan) and divide the family. And it worked: Klaus' siblings wasted little time staking him, unwittingly leaving themselves to fight Dahlia — and protect baby Hope — without their fearless leader.
"When you see Rebekah and Freya and Elijah standing there over the dessicated, daggered corpse of Klaus it's shocking and it puts the people we care about in the most jeopardy we've ever seen them in," executive producer Michael Narducci told a small group of reporters after a screening of the episode. "That's the story we're going to tell in these last three episodes."
Keep reading for more scoop about how Aidan's death impacts his love Josh (Steven Krueger), how the Mikaelsons will go up against their aunt, what's next for Hayley (Phoebe Tonkin) and Jackson (Nathan Parsons) and how Cami (Leah Pipes) and Marcel (Charles Michael Davis) will return to the fold. Plus: Will Davina (Danielle Campbell) resurrect Kol (Daniel Sharman)?
When did you decide to kill off Aidan?
Michael Narducci: We knew off the bat we wanted to tell a beautiful Romeo and Juliet story between Josh, a vampire, and [Aidan], a werewolf. Our goal was to create a complicated, layered person who was put in many dilemmas in terms of his loyalty to the pack. Being an ambitious person and questioning the leadership of his own friend led him to be vulnerable to Klaus. [Then], Dahlia comes to town and her goal is to divide the Mikaelsons and ruin the vow of "always and forever" so that they would be easier to take down. We thought, "If Dahlia is smart, she could use someone's death the way she says she's going to use Aidan's death as the kindling to light a fire that divides the Mikaelsons." ... Everyone of us loves Aidan and everyone of us is sad to see Collin Woodell go because he's such an incredible actor and a beautiful performer and a star in the making. But we felt like that was the best story. So, like with any death you arrive at it, you debate it, and if it's right, that's what you have to do.
Was this always the ending you had planned for him?
Narducci: We talked about many different endings for Josh and Aidan. We talked about them running off together. We talked about one of them being captured and the other risking everything to save him. This [exit] was really tough; we felt this one in the room. But there's an argument to be made that Josh, as a vampire, would've lost Aidan no matter what, and it goes back to vampires being immortal. Nobody [in life] really gets a happy ending. What you have to do is live for those beautiful moments as they come and live in the now. If that's the metric by which we judge Josh and Aidan, then they had one of the most beautiful, happiest stories of anybody on our show. They got to a place we all want to get to, and his life was taken and Josh has to continue, which is a very universal story.
How will he react next week?
Narducci: He's wrecked and ... the reality is [he'll think], "No matter how much I'm angry and no matter how much of a vendetta I want to carry out against Klaus, I'm just a couple-of-years-old vampire and that's Klaus MIkaelson." But his rage is no less. So, the first thing he needs to do is wrap his head around how he's going to recover from this grief and that's something we explore in the next episode.
Will any of the Mikaelsons doubt Klaus when he takes credit for the killing?
Narducci: I think it's very believable Klaus would do it, and it's very telling that in that moment that Jackson completely believes he did it. Hayley is shocked, but believes he did it. Elijah believes he did it and still defends him! Nobody is thinking, "Well he was clearly framed." Yet he has confessed the truth to Cami, and once that truth starts to get out, our characters react to the question of who could've done that and why.
Do the siblings believe they can take on Dahlia without him?
Narducci: That is the million dollar question everyone is struggling with. In the final seconds... [Elijah's] expression of grief and sadness and fear of what [this has] come to is incredible. It is chilling what is going on because that child is certainly in danger and could be taken. They're never going to let that happen, so they're going to stand up to someone who is the most powerful thing we've ever seen in this universe. They're going to have to find a way to deal with her without the most dangerous member of their family.
On a show where death isn't necessarily the end, how much weight should we give these deaths?
Narducci: You haven't seen the last of Klaus. Aidan is gone. Josephine LaRue (Meg Foster) is gone, Oliver (Chase Coleman) is gone. There is no "other side" in this show because it was dissolved on The Vampire Diarieslast season. If you're a witch and you die, your body is consecrated and you could go into what we call the ancestral spirit well. So, if you're a witch, there's the possibility we'll see you again in a vision and, like Celeste or Esther, you might be able to come back in someone else's body. Finn has been ejected from Vincent's body and Freya keeps him in a little necklace. I think we might see Finn again someday, but right now we're having so much fun exploring the character of Vincent (Yusuf Gatewood). Eva St. Clair is dead, which gives Rebekah (Maisie Richardson-Sellers) the right to own that body. But for how long we don't know. So, our goal is to make the drama count by making these deaths as permanent as they can be on this show. We won't be seeing a corporeal Mikael (Sebastian Roche) any time soon. [Last week's episode] was meant to be the definitive finale between Klaus and Mikael and that last conversation was intentionally left inconclusive.
What can we expect from Hayley and Jackson in the bayou?
Narducci: I think they're reeling with the loss of the guy who was, in effect, the vice president, the top lieutenant, the most trusted No. 2. Hayley has to honor the very threat Klaus made in his conversation with Cami: "How can we possibly trust the wolves to protect Hope given what Klaus has done?" Hayley, as a leader, is going to have to work with Jackson to find a way to earn back that trust, and those wolves really need to be loyal to Hayley and Jackson. [They] want to protect that baby because , as we saw, that person coming for that baby is not going to stop. It's going to get bad.
Are Davina and Rebekah still working to resurrect Kol?
Narducci: In the next episode, there are some pretty important witch shenanigans going on that will keep her from moving on with the spell, but she'll get one ray of hope possibility of what she might be able to do. [It's] a very surprising twist that might aid her in her quest to resurrect Kol, and then she has to decide if that's the path she wants to follow given what its going to cost her.
What is coming up for Cami and Marcel who have both been a bit sidelined?
Narducci: We'll see Cami in every episode for the remainder of the season. It was our intention to tell the story of the return of Kol and Finn and the surprising revelation that this long-lost sister is not dead. All those things are Mikaelson-centric. [But] Klaus needs his connection with Cami because it provides him with a certain calm and solace. She is the one person who has been able to understand him and sympathize with him and show him forgiveness he craves, but can never admit. So, she's important to him and this family. Marcel has some very difficult scenes coming up, and he has to decide what part he wants to play in all of this. We know he has a rule about protecting kids and we know he has a fierce loyalty to the Mikaelsons and especially Rebekah. Some choices will have to be made for him that I would call impossible choices. We're going to see more of Marcel for sure.
Any hope for Hayley and Elijah?
Narducci: Hayley made a decision to marry Jackson because it's the right thing to do for her child and it's the right thing to do for the people she cares about. It's also clear this guy loves her and [that] he's a really good guy. Over the course of preparing for that marriage, I think she found herself having legitimate feelings that this could be the right thing, and over the course of the next episodes, we're going to see where that relationship is going and how far both of them are willing to go to stand up for one another. At the same time, clearly she had strong feelings for Elijah for a very long time. We all know if Elijah is someone whose principle focus is family above all, it's very difficult to be in love with the woman who is the mother of his brother's child. He still loves her and wants to protect her. He may suppress that and bury that and maybe it's one of the things he'll have to hide behind his red door, but the pain and the conflict of living with this person who you could never be with is very present in that character.
Finally, who should we be most worried about for the remainder of the season?
Narducci: Nobody on our show has an easy go of it for the rest of the episodes. The question is: Who is going to live and who is going to die? Who is going to be changed forever? What relationships may have a chance at being healed and which relationships will be destroyed? But there is a ray of hope. We're shooting the finale right now... and the fundamental thesis of this show is how we draw strength from the people who we are born with and who we choose to be our family. If there is any hope for these people it comes from that, [and] we will make that story manifest in the finale.
Reporting by Shelli Weinstein
The Originals returns on Monday at 8/7c on The CW.
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