Friday, October 3, 2014

Focus on Fall Sci Fi TV: The Originals

The Originals, The CW, Returning Series (2nd Season), Premieres Monday Octobers 6th 8 PM EST

the-originals-cancelledHere’s the official description for the second season of The Originals:
Season two finds our heroes adjusting to a new status quo, with the newly empowered werewolves controlling the city and a myriad of unknown threats lurking. Though Klaus and Hayley have vowed to scorch the earth in order to make New Orleans a safe home for their daughter, Hope, they also have inner demons to battle. As she adjusts to life as a hybrid, Hayley experiences crippling rage and depression after saying goodbye to her daughter, and Klaus – who needs his strength now more than ever – finds himself regularly weakened as the werewolves use the moonlight rings forged in his blood. Elijah, finding himself isolated from his troubled family, sets out to destroy Francesca (guest star Peta Sergeant) and her traitorous werewolves, connecting with Marcel and his renewed vampire community in the process. Despite the dangerous climate of the city, Cami recommits to her studies and to pursuing the life she wanted before she met Klaus – but the werewolves in the Quarter aren’t the only enemies preventing New Orleans from any semblance of peace.
Unbeknownst to Klaus and Elijah, their ruthlessly devious parents have returned from the dead. Though their father, Mikael (guest star Sebastian Roché), is controlled by Davina’s magic, he remains ever-intent on killing Klaus – even if he has to go through Davina to do it. Elsewhere, their mother, Esther (guest star Alice Evans), inhabiting the body of a teenage witch, is fueled by a consuming and twisted love for her children as she devises a disturbing plan to reunite her fractured family – a plan that involves untold torment not only for the Original siblings, but for any and all of their loved ones.  --The CW

 I found myself hooked by this Vampire Diaries spin-off last season even though I never cared much for the parent series.  In its first season, The Originals dispensed with all of the angsty stories of show it came from (and I understand Diaries has veered from that as well) and also focused less on the soap opera aspects you might expect from it.  Instead, it delivered plenty of morally ambiguous characters in a power struggle that was downright Shakespearean at times.   And the second year promises more of the same.  For my money, this is the true heir to Dark Shadows and it also realizes the potential that the short-lived Kindred: The Embraced hinted at back in 1996 and I’m definitely pumped for the coming second season.

As far as its prospects of making it to a third season, I have to say I'm less than optimistic at this point.  The Originals was hit hard by The CW’s late season slump last year, and now it finds itself shifted to Mondays which have been a disaster for the network the last few years.  I realize they are hoping the show will help them win back some of the audience share for that night like it did with Tuesdays last season.  But then it had the assistance of Supernatural then whereas it is taking on Mondays with an untested (non-genre) new entry.  That makes me very nervous.  Still, since it airs on the fifth place network, it will be given a bit more leeway if its numbers drop.  But don't be surprised to see this show at bubble status before too long.

Here is the trailer for Season 2:

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