10:01 pm EDT, October 10, 2019

‘Legacies’ season 2 premiere review: Hope’s absence made others’ hearts grow fonder

I thought that was a great way to kick off Legacies season 2, don’t you? It was so great to have MOST of the gang back together…

It’s been a long wait to find out how the world will move on without Hope Mikaelson, or her memories. It seemed a particularly sad task for Landon Kirby, seeing as she had become quite the fixture in his life, what with the “I love you”s right there at the end of last season. We definitely got a good idea of how a summer without Hope went down, and we got to see her step back out of Malivore. Now we just Hope she has an idea of how to get her life back.

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The easiest way to talk about this episode is to break it down by character.

M.G. heads out for a summer in Kaleb’s neck of the woods

So, neither M.G. nor Kaleb seem particularly bothered by Hope’s absence. Which makes sense, honestly, because out of all the main characters, she was just not as close with them. They both were a part of her super squad, but since our resident vamps had a few other things on their mind during Hope’s year of reconnection, they didn’t form seriously deep bonds with her.

Instead, they took their summer vacay to Kaleb’s place. They spent their summer soaking up some sun (thanks to their daylight rings), perfecting the fine art of barbecue, and, if you’re M.G., meeting a woman who definitely struck his fancy. Too bad she’s Kaleb’s sister, Kym. What?!

legacies season 2 episode 1

Thanks to Ebboney Wilson’s casting announcement (which you can read about here) we know that this is probably not the last we’ll see of Kym. How and why we’ll see her again is up in the air a bit, but I’m beyond anxious to see where their relationship goes from here. Especially since Kaleb was definitely not all about seeing his sister get involved with a vamp. Tensions are definitely destined to escalate.

I loved watching these two get closer over their summer adventure. Kaleb and M.G.’s relationship is one I hope to take a good long look at in the weeks to come, but I love watching their brotherhood develop and grow. They have so much to learn from each other, and I can’t wait to see that unfold.

Lizzie spends some quality time with Caroline and finds inner peace

Lizzie and Josie made the decision to spend their summer vacations cultivating their own lives. It seems this would have happened whether they were together or separate, but since Alaric didn’t take his ousting as headmaster very well, Josie chose to spend her vacay in Mystic Falls, while Lizzie met up with Caroline for some quality mother/daughter time.

We didn’t get a whole lot of Lizzie in this episode outside of her conversations with Josie via pink crystal messaging, but I expect to see her back in the thick of things at the Salvatore School next week. In the meantime, they’ve used their magical facetime messaging to keep each other up-to-date on their individual progress.

legacies season 2 episode 1

I, for one, was beyond impressed by the maturity I saw out of Lizzie. She seems to have had time to fully grasp the mistakes she made last year, and is actively working with therapists and doctors while she’s abroad to find strategies and methods to cope with her bipolar disorder. I hope that her newfound maturity sticks with her, because this supportive, kind, yet still snarky Lizzie is a sister I am anxious to see back at the Salvatore School.

Josie sticks around Mystic Falls… and a new ship is born.

Outside of her convos with Lizzie, Josie doesn’t have a ton of options for summer companions since everyone else is away for the summer. Hope is in Malivore, being forgotten, Lizzie is gone, Raf is stuck as a wolf, Penelope took off for witch school in Belgium, and all her other witch friends are having their own adventures with their families and friends at home.

So, she bonds with the only other teenager around, Landon Kirby. It’s actually kind of easy to see Josie and Landon becoming friends. They have very similar temperaments, and since Landon is similarly bereft for friends this summer, their bond comes really easily. Whether it’s over milkshakes at the Grill, jamming in the town square, or movie nights at their rundown hangout on Salvatore grounds, it’s nice to see them both having a lot of fun.

And then, Raf stops showing up at his and Landon’s scheduled hang out sessions. Raf has spent this summer watching Josie and Landon bond, and, since he’s in no position to be able to do much as far as friendships go while he’s in wolf form, he gives them space instead. He wanders off from movie night, and Landon takes it hard.

legacies season 2 episode 1

Josie is there to comfort him though, and that comfort comes in the form of a kiss. And Losie is born. (We need to work on their ship name.)

It’s also worth noting that while Landon and Josie spent their summer bonding, he was also throwing himself into the lake to drown so he could get glimpses of something he knows he lost. He can feel the loss of Hope more actively than anyone else, so it seems only natural that he would do everything in his power to try and figure out why he feels this way. Josie is not down with his self-harming methods, so they fight about it, which probably just drives them closer together, honestly. She cares about him, and he needs people in his life who want to stick around.

We still have no idea when Hope will return to everyone’s memories, if she ever does, but I really hope that Josie and Landon’s friendship survives whatever romantic drama results from all of this. He really needs people in his life, and I think their friendship could be powerful.

Alaric is kind of pouting.

Ousted by a 3-1 vote (whose voting members were Josie, Dorian, Kaleb, and Jed), Alaric is no longer headmaster at the Salvatore School, and he’s doing his best not to be too sore about it. He hints in his convos with Dorian that his initial reaction was, well, awful, but he’s keeping himself busy with Merge research and trying to figure out who went into Malivore.

Josie stuck around to keep her dad company, but since she is off having a lovely summer with Landon, Alaric has had a lot of time to tinker with research and poke around looking for information. I’m sure we’ll get more from Alaric in weeks to come once Professor Vardemus makes his appearance. Those two are definitely not going to see eye to eye, and Alaric isn’t usually the kind to keep quiet when he sees things going downhill.

legacies season 2 episode 1

Last, but most certainly not least, Hope Mikaelson has a very interesting summer in Malivore.

We didn’t know what to expect when Hope flung herself and Clarke into Malivore in an attempt to neutralize the creature-absorbing-gollum for good. Would Hope’s presence eliminate him altogether? Would she die? Would she be sent back to the world immediately in Legacies season 2? Would she be stuck in Malivore forever?

So many questions, and we definitely got our answers. You see, since Hope isn’t 100% all tribrid-ed out yet, she doesn’t have the effect she thought she would have on Malivore. Her vampire side has not yet been triggered, so she cannot totally neutralize the creature created by a witch, a werewolf, and a vampire.

So, she finds herself all alone in a black void like so many of the monsters she met last season described Malivore. That is until a vortex tries to suck her out of her prison, and POOF! a wild Clarke appears. So now, rather than being alone, she has to suffer with Clarke. Not her idea of fun. Not to mention, that everytime she uses magic, Malivore seems more determined than ever to suck her into that vortex.

That is until Hope realizes what is actually going on. You see, since she isn’t a fully-fledged tribrid, she didn’t eliminate Malivore, but her presence there is definitely not welcome. She is like a poison to the gollum, and therefore, he keeps trying to expel her from his depths. Funny enough, every time Malivore tries to get rid of her, Clarke grabs ahold to try and tag along, but Malivore isn’t done making his son suffer for his betrayals.

Ultimately, Hope chooses to leave Clarke behind, cementing them as enemies from here on out, and takes her exit back to the real world the first chance she gets. Once free of Malivore’s void, Hope sets out for the Salvatore School, anxious to get back to everything she finds familiar. She finds Deacon and eventually Landon, but watching Landon and Josie’s first kiss is definitely not the welcome home she expected.

There HAS to be a way for Hope to be restored to everyone’s memories. We didn’t spend the entire first season watching her build relationships with all her friends to watch her spend all of Legacies season 2 wallowing in friendless loneliness. Magic is definitely the solution here, she just needs to figure out what can bring her back into the Salvatore School fold.

How about that ending?

And then we get our dramatic, and ominous ending. Hope, sitting at a very familiar bus stop, is confronted with a very large troll-like monster, while, at the same time, we watch a red-hooded figure walk into a Mystic Falls cemetery. Clarke is begging his father for a reprieve, dedicating himself to killing Hope and eliminating magic’s attempt to find a balance. We watch as this hooded figure conjures the Triad symbol in fire over a gravesite, and Clarke looks to be returning to the world. Are these two things connected?

Looks like we’ll have to hang in there until next week.

I, for one, found this premiere to be a pretty fantastic start to Legacies season 2. It may not have given us a flashy new monster or anything, but it set all the pieces in place for some real progress to be made for all these characters, and very soon. M.G. is working diligently on finding his own way in the world. Kaleb is sticking by his friend, helping him to adjust. Lizzie is finding healthy ways to embrace her quirks and curb her destructive impulses. Josie is quickly establishing her own place in the world, rather than existing on the periphery of others’ stories. Alaric is moving on with his life.

Meanwhile Hope is just starting to adjust to life in a world that forgot her, and I’m sure next episode will give us a large dose of her experiences in this new world. We don’t know how Hope’s story is going to progress, but hopefully, she’ll quickly find a way to be remembered by all the people she’s come to truly love and care for. And maybe the rest of the world, too.

Check out the trailer for ‘Legacies’ season 2, episode 2:

Legacies season 2 airs Thursdays at 9pm E.T. on the CW.

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