Legacies continues its winning streak with 4×05, “I Thought You’d Be Happier to See Me.” This episode is a prime example as to why this show will succeed as a serialized drama. In addition, it removes the need for external tension with the Monster of the Week formula.
This shift paves the way for character-driven stories that stir up organic nostalgia from the TVD Universe.
Lauren Petzke‘s direction is incredibly stunning this week and directly contributes to that nostalgia. It’s one thing to be back in familiar sets like Whitmore Hospital. It’s another thing to make it feel like those sets haven’t changed over the years. The memories are still intact.
Ironically, Josie tries to rein in Lizzie’s frustration while they’re at Mystic Falls Hospital because if those walls could talk, they’d have a laundry list of problems.
Petzke’s collaboration with Brett Matthews‘ script and the rest of the cast and crew’s work is beautiful to watch. Namely, the scenes inside of Ric’s head are fascinating glimpses at his past and old haunts. It’s cool to see how Legacies uses Whitmore’s space to convey Ric’s mind’s last minutes. It’s eerie and creates a ticking clock without being that pointed.
It creates urgency in Lizzie and Ric’s final moments together.
The tone of those scenes is exactly why Ric’s death needs to be permanent. Plenty of us loved Ric through the highs and lows over more than a decade, spanning now three shows, but it’s his time. Legacies struggles with death permanence. Landon is a prime example of that, but Ric can be the example that the opposite can happen on this show.
It would be devastating for the twins and Hope when she flips her switch, but Ric’s death would catapult the characters and the overall story forward. His death would show that actions have permanent consequences even when the supernatural is involved. So much about Ric’s scenes in “I Thought You’d Be Happier to See Me” are full circle.
It would be a bit of a letdown if Ric magically recovers. This episode goes out of its way to explicitly spell out how supernatural forces cannot fix his condition. He cheated death more times than many can say, so Ric’s essentially tried all the loopholes one time or another. Legacies even draws precise parallels to similar emotional beats from TVD.
The most poignant parallel is when Josie and Lizzie walk out of the hospital to The Fray’s “Be Still” to see a candlelight memorial for Ric. The same scene, down to the candles and the song, happened on TVD 3×20, “Don’t Go Gentle.” The other parallel is less obvious but still stands because of Josie and Lizzie.
Caroline lost her mother, knowing there was no medical or supernatural cure to Liz’s condition. Now, Caroline’s daughters face the same impending grief if Legacies lets this play out. The mere fact that Lizzie reunites with Ric in one of the first times they ever interacted is bittersweet and heartbreaking.
What’s the point of such a well-executed, full-circle moment for there to be a last-ditch cure?
Jenny Boyd does some of her best work in the series in “I Thought You’d Be Happier to See Me.” Her performance is utterly devastating.
It’s stunning to watch how Josie and Lizzie find their way back to each other throughout each other. Their transparency is a refreshing reflection of their non-linear journies that bring them to such an honest moment. There is so much uncertainty in their lives right now. It’s beautiful to see them be so sure of each other after their tumultuous past.
On the other end of that spectrum, it’s challenging to watch Rebekah Mikaelson try to remind Hope of that sentiment. Family is always and forever, whether she likes it or not, and Rebekah has never been one to fold easily. That’s why it’s more likely than not that this episode is not the last time we’ll see Aunty Bex.
Holt and Danielle Rose Russell are simply fantastic together. Like with Freya, it’s evident that these two characters know each other better than they’d like to admit sometimes. It’s a game of cat and mouse but with more care and concern than the average game.
For example, you can see Rebekah’s heart break when Hope tells her that her family killed Klaus.
It’s that line that reveals the hand Hope is playing. She’s leaning into the worst stories she’s heard about her father. Hope calls back to the awful things Klaus did (like throwing darts at an enemy) because that’s what Hope needs to keep going. If she lets herself feel like her father eventually does, it’ll be too much.
In the process of pushing that down, Hope refuses to see that Klaus didn’t die because of his family. On the contrary, his family (for the most part) saved him, time and time again.
Rebekah may not have been able to get that through to Hope during this visit, but that doesn’t mean Hope is a lost cause. Hope says that she is her father’s daughter, but she won’t make the same mistakes. She may want it to mean one thing, but one of Klaus’ biggest mistakes is pushing his family way as often as he did.
That White Oak Ash dagger Rebekah pulls out of her coat is a remanent of that past. Hope has the opportunity to do things differently, to do them better, but someone needs to appeal to her humanity. Ric’s dying (?) wish is that Josie, Lizzie, and Hope take care of each other.
Who wants to bet that the Saltzman twins are the ones who remind Hope of who she is?
Other Spelltacular Moments:
- Ethan staying in Stefan’s room is something so personal to me.
- Yep, I have no choice but to ship MG/Lizzie/Ethan.
- The bisexual lighting in that bar stunned me!
- Rebekah’s agenda against country music is everything.
- Small details like Caroline getting Ric boots for Christmas are so nice.
- The flashback to the twins’ 11th birthday was amazing within itself.
- It got even better when Summer Fontana made a guest appearance.
- Cleo being in the art room makes me wish for a time when she and Hope can create art together.
- If the Triad is back, at least it’s different than before.
What did you think of “I Thought You’d Be Happier to See me?” Let us know in the comments below!
Legacies airs Thursdays at 9/8c on The CW.