TV TV Recaps

“The Originals” Ep. 5.03: “Ne Me Quitte Pas”

Episode three, “Ne Me Quitte Pas” (translation: do not leave me), operates quite a bit like a bottle episode, except instead of all the action taking place in one location, it’s all focused on one character: my favorite character. Elijah Mikaelson has captivated me since he first turned up on “The Vampire Diaries” looking for Katerina/Katherine’s doppelganger Elena. I’m not sure if it was Daniel Gillies, the character of Elijah, or all the crazy dapper suits he wears, but I was hooked immediately.

The Originals
Daniel Gillies as Elijah | Photo Credit: Annette Brown/The CW

When I finished season 4 of “The Originals,” I knew it would be a minute before Elijah was back in the Mikaelson fold; as a parting gift he asked Marcel to remove all his memories of his family, after all. Unfortunately, it looks like it’s going to be even longer than anticipated. Within tonight’s episode, Elijah does in fact leave his family, and Klaus specifically, in the lurch.

But I’m getting ahead of myself because the episode opens with perhaps the most horrifying thing I’ve ever witnessed on this show: Elijah riding on public transportation. He wakes dazedly on a bus in the middle of nowhere still wearing a bespoke suit for a few blessed moments. He exits the bus and walks around the bus stop/gas station still in a daze until he realizes he’s hungry.

The vending machine nearby won’t work so, naturally, he smashes a hole in the glass and steals some chips. Unfortunately for the owner of said gas station, the chips do not satisfy him, and before too long Elijah is taking a big chomp out of the guy. This is when he does the least Elijah-ish thing in the whole episode. He puts on the guys clothes, which are brown and polyester and ill-fitting. There’s even a terrible hat. Then he steals his truck, which is complete with a *gasp* bobblehead Jesus on the dash! 

Luckily it’s only a short while before Elijah is in NYC and wearing slightly more appropriate clothes (mostly henleys and ultra-tight t-shirts the rest of the episode). He’s also nomming on people left and right with seemingly not a care about being caught. Which is when he meets Antoinette (Jaime Murray), who is gently soothing/compelling her own dinner so that he tastes better (a technique she explains in lots of scientific language later).  

Antoinette is able to explain some things to Elijah about what he is (vampire) and how to operate under the radar in NYC (stop killing people so violently). They quickly fall into a romance that breaks my Haylijah shipping heart but is also so captivating (thanks to Gillies and Murray) that I honestly can’t even be mad. Antoinette does also make some comments about the “family” that turned her and their rules which makes me think she’s probably a Mikaelson somewhere down the line. 

Before too long their happy exploration of life is interrupted by none other than Marcel, who’s scolding the crap out of Elijah for being in NYC and we come to my biggest issue with the episode. If Marcel was so worried about Elijah not going far enough away, he might not have done such a good job of making Elijah a total amnesiac. I’m all for a narrative kick in the pants, but when the plot holes are as large as this they’re hard to ignore. 

And think of it from Elijah’s perspective. There he was having a perfectly nice night with Antoinette when Marcel (a man he doesn’t know) accosts him in Central Park and demands he leave the city with no warning or explanation. Naturally, Elijah is curious to find out more about who he is now that he at least knows his name is Elijah. But Antoinette is not interested and also scared of Marcel so she leaves him.

We’re then treated to a montage of Elijah angrily circling areas of NYC on a map and murdering a slew of people in a super deep v-neck. His appearance gets increasingly manic before Marcel finds him again, mid-slaughter, and is finally able to explain enough so that Elijah understands he has to leave the city. Though if we’re being fair, Marcel might have done more a precision job of removing Elijah’s memories as opposed to the metaphorical sledgehammer he used instead.

As we know, Elijah then gives up his search for answers and travels to Manosque, France, which Antoinette mentioned literally only once in passing. In the now-familiar piano bar, he sees Antoinette playing and they take up their romance once again.

Flash forward to present day. They’re still happily playing piano together in Manosque when Elijah proposes with another deeply unpleasant ring. I don’t know what it is about the Mikaelson boys, but they are not good at picking out rings, or women to wear them (I like Antoinette but I’m still Team Hayley all the way).

Antoinette accepts said proposal, duh, and heads off to fetch some champagne from the wine cellar, where SURPRISE! Klaus finds her and compels her to leave Elijah. Except she hasn’t been compelled, so she tells Elijah about the man in the kitchen and then helpfully empties the piano bar of all the patrons so Elijah and Klaus can throw down.

Klaus immediately starts Klaus-ing all over the place, which is what I call his penchant for demanding shit from people who definitely need more information before they capitulate with his demands. He basically waltzes in and tells Elijah that even though he doesn’t remember his family or anyone, they need Elijah’s help and he’s coming back to New Orleans immediately. To which Elijah takes a hard fucking pass. It turns out he’s done some research about himself in the intervening seven years and he does not give even a tiny shit about who he was, his family or specifically Hayley, who Klaus brings up as kind of a last resort.

Antoinette is able to sneak back into the restaurant and see the results of Klaus and Elijah being near each other: maggots all over the floor and surely a crapload of snakes everywhere. She quickly stakes him and she and Elijah try to run away. Obviously, as an Original (Ron Howard voice: “Hey, that’s the name of the show!”) Klaus is totally fine and he continues trying to convince Elijah to go with him, which still doesn’t work. Klaus makes a lot of noise about all the “love and loyalty” of the Mikaelson family, which LOL. Between all the betrayals and daggers to the heart and neck snapping and keeping each other in coffins, I don’t see how much time there could have been for the type of “love” Klaus suggests. I’m honestly surprised that Klaus didn’t bite Elijah to force him to return to New Orleans for the werewolf cure.

Needless to say, Elijah does not accept Klaus’s request (read: demand) and instead snaps Klaus’s neck, ya know, like ya do. Elijah and Antoinette return to their home, which is charming AF, and start packing to escape when he confronts her about the fact that she knows both who and what he is and that she’s been taking vervain the whole time she’s known him which, again, LOL. I had forgotten vervain even existed because they never use it on “The Originals.” 

Elijah’s a little angry because she’s been lying for like 7 years, but Antoinette explains that she didn’t want to put them in any danger. He’s really more embarrassed than angry because he didn’t want her to know that part of him – the evil, murdery Original part. But she knows that’s not who he is anymore; he’s become a better person since he’s been away from his family and the memories of them.

Antoinette says they need to hurry and leave before Klaus wakes up or the sun rises, but Elijah is quite confident he won’t be coming after them. Knowing that Elijah has completely renounced the Mikaelsons has supposedly broken Klaus in such a way that he won’t continue searching for him. This is all but confirmed when we watch Klaus call Freya to say that he couldn’t find Elijah in France.

Antoinette then asks about Hayley and Elijah assures her that Hayley’s from another life entirely and he couldn’t imagine loving anyone the way he loves Antoinette, which is very sweet and very annoying to me. Again, I still love Antoinette. Jaime Murray has created a whole character that I care a lot about in one episode but I’ve got four previous seasons of Haylijah that it’s hard to let go of.

Either way, Elijah and Antoinette decide to get back to celebrating and she suggests Elijah go back out and get the champagne they were going to drink. Instead Elijah takes off his daylight ring – I guess as a symbol of commitment – and then proposes again. Which is when we get the biggest shock of the episode. Elijah closes up the box of his “Elijah Mikaelson” stuff and then fully opens the curtains on himself and STANDS IN THE SUN! He says “goodbye Elijah Mikaelson” to himself and catches on fire!

I can’t imagine he’s actually dead; it would be a waste of one of the best characters on the show and of the narrative momentum trying to get him back in the fold produces. Plus I suspect he still needs to go back to New Orleans at some point because of The Hollow. At the same time, it would be a fittingly noble end to the noblest Mikaelson, so I’m torn.

Overall, I think this is one of the best episodes the show has done (props to Joseph Morgan on his directing). It was wonderfully shot and acted and it’s always a lot of fun to slow down on the plot and really live in a smaller storyline for an hour. It helps the characters and the plot to breathe so everything isn’t so breakneck all the time, especially when the show is trying to introduce a new character (Antoinette) who will presumably play a large part in the remaining episodes. Giving the audience the time and space to really get to know and understand Antoinette only did favors for Jaime Murray, Daniel Gillies and their relationship. We’ve known Antoinette for only 42 minutes but I believe in her character and I believe Elijah could fall in love with her. It all makes sense in such a great way!

Despite how the end of this episode turned out, I’m excited to see how the season progresses!

Featured Image Credit: The CW

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