Fans first met the Mikaelson siblings on The Vampire Diaries, as the villains of that story. It was almost hard to imagine that they would ever become characters fans would root for, but they did. Once they became part of their own series, the spin-off The Originals, viewers saw a different side to the Mikaelson family. Learning about their past and seeing how they stuck by the vow "always and forever" (or didn't) offered a different perspective. There was so much more to the Mikaelson story, just in the past, than what was seen in their time in Mystic Falls. The spin-off also introduced new supporting characters. Quite a bit happened over its five seasons. Some of those story-lines were better for the series as a whole than others.
While New Orleans was the Mikaelsons' home, that didn't mean staying there was the right choice for all of them. While the focus on family was always the right move for the series, it didn't mean that every storyline connected to them was a smart decision. In some cases, just because the end result of a storyline meant a positive addition to the series didn't mean the plot didn't hurt or couldn't have been done better. Here are 7 Storylines That Hurt The Originals (And 13 That Saved It).
20 Saved: The Sleeping Spell to Save the Mikaelsons
At the end of season 3, the Mikaelsons were all struggling and facing the ends of their lives. Marcel had bitten Elijah and Kol. Freya was poisoned. Rebekah was cursed. In order to hit the pause button on all their ailments, Freya put herself and her siblings to sleep and linked them all to Klaus. It was up to Hayley to find cures and save them all.
It was back into the coffins for the Mikaelsons, but this time, not due to violent actions against one another. Instead, it was for their protection, a nice change of pace.
Given Klaus' history of harming his siblings, it was also a nice bonus for him to be the one doing something to save them.
19 Saved: Kol In Kaleb's Body
One of the body swaps from season 2 saw Kol in Kaleb's body. It was during that time that he and Davina met and fell in love. That was the right move, not just for Kol, but for their relationship as well. Kol wasn't the best person in the past (or present). Fans of The Vampire Diaries especially knew how violent and dangerous he could be.
However, he did change, and this new body allowed some distance between the old Kol and the new one (who retained aspects of his old self). It made it possible to see why he and Davina falling in love and staying together was good for both characters, even after he returned to his original body.
18 Hurt: The End Of Hayley's Life Wasn't Really About Her
On the one hand, Hayley lost her life protecting her daughter. With Hope in the cross-hairs, there was nothing Hayley wouldn't have done for her. On the other hand, her passing was more about how it affected both Hope and Elijah than anything else.
Elijah didn't know who he was or how he felt about Hayley in the moments prior to it. Therefore, rather than help, he did nothing to save her. As for Hope, she lost both her parents by the time she went to the Salvatore Boarding School for Legacies. Obviously she would have been a different person if she'd at least still had her mother in her life. Hayley was too important a character to go out the way she did.
17 Saved: Marcel Took Lucien's Serum
Lucien's serum upgraded Marcel and made him into a dangerous weapon against an Original. It also gave him a serious advantage against the Mikaelsons, since they were in the dark when it happened. Elijah thought he eliminated a threat to his family when he took Marcel's life quite violently. However, the serum kept even that from working. Instead, Marcel survived.
It wasn't just the reveal that Marcel's life wouldn't be over at that moment that made this a smart move. His complicated relationship with the Mikaelsons, particularly Klaus and Rebekah, was an important part of the series. Perhaps most importantly, it also gave Rebekah and Marcel the chance to get the happy ending they deserved.
16 Hurt: Esther Gave Freya To Dahlia
Mikael and Esther weren't the best parents. That was established numerous times, on The Vampire Diaries and The Originals. To further cement that fact, it was revealed that Esther claimed Freya was a victim of the plague. Instead, what really happened was she gave her to her sister, Dahlia, as payment for a fertility spell using dark magic.
It wasn't until the present day that Freya was reunited with her siblings. Bringing her into the Mikaelson fold was a great storyline for the series. The reason it took so long for her to be part of the family was not. Freya was essentially turned into a pawn between the sisters and a witch for Dahlia to use to her advantage.
15 Saved: Finn In Vincent's Body
Out of all the Mikaelsons, Finn mattered the least when they were introduced on The Vampire Diaries. The others had a more significant impact during their time on that show. However, his existence ended up having a positive effect on The Originals in the long run. Esther put him in Vincent's body. Even once Finn's time was over, the real Vincent ended up sticking around. He eventually became part of the extended Mikaelson family.
Vincent could have easily been cast aside, only around for a few episodes after he regained control of his body. Fortunately, he wasn't. He ended up becoming an important part of the show and is still around in New Orleans, should anyone, say on Legacies, need help.
14 Saved: Davina And Kol Left New Orleans
Davina and Kol's relationship was a complicated one. They had a lot to get past, including his body swap and the (brief) end of her life. Still, their relationship might have been one of the best parts of the series. That was largely in part due to their decision to leave New Orleans behind. While there, they always ran into problems and got mixed up in Mikaelson and supernatural drama. It couldn't be helped because of what they were and his family name.
Moving away let them be happy, albeit off-screen, together. Fortunately, that didn't mean they stopped helping or being part of the family. They returned a few times to help, and they were always a phone call away.
13 Hurt: The Harvest Ritual
The Harvest ritual was what basically kick started much of The Originals story for several characters. It was a sacrificial ritual that was performed every 300 years to strengthen the bond between the witches and their Ancestors. That sacrifice was ending the lives of four young witches.
No storyline that includes ending young lives can ever be considered good. It had its moments, and it was the way that Davina was introduced. However, the way it was done, Davina was left alive and with the knowledge that that needed to change to complete the ritual. Considering everything Davina went through and did over the years, it was sometimes easy to forget how young she really was.
12 Saved: Davina Broke Klaus' Sire Line
The Vampire Diaries first established the importance of a sire line. When the life of an Original was ended, those he or she made into vampires also passed away. On The Originals, Davina managed to break Klaus' sire bond. Therefore, if someone ended his life, those in his line weren't in danger. Considering how many major characters in the franchise he sired, that was clearly the right move.
That was especially true with the way the series ended. Otherwise, with Klaus preparing to sacrifice himself, breaking that bond would've had to be taken into consideration. That could've ended up being too much to pack into the final episodes or they might have tried to come up with a way around that concern.
11 Saved: The Mikaelsons Split The Hollow's Evil
To save Hope, the Mikaelson siblings split the evil of the Hollow among them. However, they couldn't be in the same place once they did. Klaus, Elijah, Kol, and Rebekah then had to go their separate ways, which allowed them to live different lives for a time. That was a happier time for some more than others.
Some flourished, while others (Klaus) returned to their more villainous ways. This move they made to save Hope was a twist on and greatly affected their "always and forever" vow. Everything about the Hollow also was what ultimately led to the end of the series. The final moment of it, with Klaus and Elijah ending their lives together, was quite memorable and a direct contrast to the divide.
10 Hurt: Hayley And Jackson's Arranged Marriage
When Hayley was a baby, her future was determined for her. She would marry Jackson to unite two royal families of werewolves. The two even ended up getting married, despite the complications surrounding their relationship.
The problem with this storyline was that The Originals was setting up Hayley and Elijah to have this epic romance. There was no place for Jackson in that. However, Jackson wasn't a bad guy. He was actually too good a guy to end up in the middle of the Mikaelson mess and relationship drama.
Therefore, it could only end one way: with the end of his life in some tragic manner. It did. No matter what, Hayley was never going to choose Jackson.
9 Saved: Freya And Keelin Chose Vincent To Father Their Child
Freya and Keelin decided that they wanted Vincent to be the father of their child. However, he initially refused, claiming he'd lost and hurt too many people. He didn't want to pass on that "curse."
In the end, he changed his mind. He had been planning to leave New Orleans. However, after seeing Klaus sacrifice everything for his family, Vincent decided to face possibly losing someone he cared about again.
It was the right move to make because not only did it further connect Freya and Vincent, but it also was a sign that the family would continue. The Mikaelsons were about to lose Klaus, but they were also looking forward, to the next generation, with Hope and this child.
8 Saved: Hope's Introduction To The Salvatore Boarding School
The final season of The Originals featured a significant time jump. A teenaged Hope became a student at the Salvatore Boarding School, a safe haven for supernatural creatures. As the only tribrid in existence, there was no place better for her. Though Hope did spend some time on-screen at the school in the final season, she soon returned to New Orleans.
However, it was the franchise's way of formally introducing the school that was first seen in The Vampire Diaries' series finale. It allowed fans to get a look at the school and what would become the primary setting of the next spin-off, the Hope-centric Legacies.
While it isn't necessary to have watched the other two series to enjoy the newest one, fans who have were treated to an introduction to some of the characters.
7 Hurt: The Ancestors' Curse On Kol
Kol and Davina's relationship wasn't an easy one, complicated by things like body swaps and curses. In fact, it was the latter that especially took its toll on them. When Kol came back to life, the Ancestors cursed him. He not only had a desire for blood greater than every other vampire's, but they also made him want to end Davina's life. He could only resist for so long.
Fortunately, that wasn't the end of Davina's character. However, it could have thrown a significant (and permanent) wrench in their relationship. It didn't, but was it really necessary to throw more drama and more obstacles in their path? They were already dealing with enough problems than the ones they were already facing.
6 Saved: Freya Was Alive
The Mikaelsons' history is a long and complicated one. Until season 2, the siblings didn't even know that their oldest sister, Freya, was alive. Esther had claimed that she had been a victim of the plague. She really gave her to her sister as a trade for a fertility spell using dark magic.
Though a previously thought lost sibling turning out to be alive can be a bit of a cliché, The Originals handled Freya's story as best it could. Her abilities as a witch were useful several times over the years once she reunited with her family.
Then, once the other siblings split the Hollow among them, Freya was the one who could be around Hope without risking horrible consequences.
5 Saved: Klaus Gave Hope To Rebekah
The day of Hope's birth was an eventful one in The Originals season 1 finale. She would've lost her mother if not for her transitioning into a hybrid. Her own life was at risk as well.
Therefore, she couldn't stay in New Orleans. Hope's parents knew it wouldn't be safe for her, but she needed to be with someone who could protect her. That someone was Rebekah Mikaelson, despite the siblings' issues over the years.
It was a smart move for the series, to show Rebekah and Klaus' bond (despite their problems) and since Rebekah was the one who wanted a normal life the most out of all the Mikaelsons. Her return was also a nice twist for the end of the season.
4 Hurt: Elijah's Memory Wipe
At the end of season 4, the Mikaelson siblings had to go their separate ways to keep the Hollow divided. Elijah made sure there was additional security in place when it came to him and Klaus. Knowing he couldn't stay away from his brother, he had Marcel compel him. Marcel not only made him forget about his vow to his brother, but who he was.
On the one hand, it led to a different Elijah in the beginning of season 5.
However, it also changed Elijah — and without his memories, he couldn't step up when he needed to. Rather than help, he was on the wrong side in the fight that led to the end of Hayley's life.
3 Saved: Freya And Keelin's Relationship
On The Originals, it was always "always and forever" for the Mikaelsons. Everyone else came in second place. Freya first met Keelin when she was preoccupied with saving her family — and nothing and no one else mattered. However, that wasn't always true. Instead, Freya had Keeling caring for her while she was too busy trying to help her family to care about herself.
Their introduction and the beginning of their relationship was a bit of a cliché (enemies to friends to more). That didn't mean it wasn't done well or wasn't a joy to watch. Freya and Keelin go their happily ever after, including a wedding and their own family. They both deserved happiness in their lives, and it was a treat to watch them find it with each other.
2 Saved: Klaus And Elijah Ended Their Lives Together
For the Mikaelsons, it was "always and forever." That was the family vow made years and years earlier, and one the siblings lived by in the present day. Sure, they did break it more than a few times, but in the end, it was true for the family — even when it came to the very end for two of the siblings.
Klaus knew his end was coming in the series finale, and he even had time to say goodbye to his loved ones. However, when it came time for sacrifice, he wasn't alone. Elijah was by his side, through it all. The series started with the two of them more than anyone else — they were the main siblings featured on The Vampire Diaries — and it was only fitting that it ended with them together, too.
1 Hurt: Rebekah's New Body
Season 2 featured several body swaps for the Mikaelson siblings. Esther put Finn and Kol in new bodies for her plan. Rebekah ended up in a new body as well, but it just wasn't the same. While the other two swaps had positive outcomes for the series, that wasn't true for Rebekah and Eva.
In the long run, it didn't matter that Rebekah spent time in another body. Yes, she had the chance to have a normal life in the witch's body, but in the end, she also received that opportunity in the finale. The only thing this accomplished was having Rebekah on the show without Claire Holt's presence. Sure, it worked, but it paled in comparison to the other swaps.