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The Vampire Diaries Spinoff: An Original Debate

by at . Comments

It appears to really be happening: the backdoor pilot for a Vampire Diaries spinoff will air on April 25, with The CW preparing viewers for a series titled "The Originals," which would center around the adventures of Klaus in contemporary New Orleans and also feature Phoebe Tonkin's Hayley.

Is this a can't-miss idea? Or a desperate attempt by the network to milk one of its only hits dry?

Two TV Fanatic writers debate this very simple question below: Should there be a Vampire Diaries spinoff?

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YES by Steve Marsi

Klaus is The Man. Most CW fare is not the show equivalent of The Man.

My argument could begin and end with those two simple, yet profound points. Yet in the interest of filling space, and persuasion, I shall elaborate briefly.

The drawbacks are obvious. Spinoffs are rarely as good as originals, and this is likely to be the case even if the new show is called The Originals. Also, why mess with a good thing and take away one of TVD's brightest stars?

Well, for starters, The Vampire Diaries Season 4 has been kind of a mess. Despite continued flashes of brilliance, it often feels too crowded in terms of characters. TVD alternately struggles to keep the dynamic Klaus involved and yet not so involved that he overwhelms the Big Three.

In short, he'd be better served as the lead of his own show. Hayley, meanwhile, is a smoldering werewolf who could be interesting, but is too extraneous for anyone to really care at this point. Therein lies the win-win potential.

In Joseph Morgan and Phoebe Tonkin, The Originals would start off with two proven all-stars, while helping TVD sharpen its focus. Add in appearances by Klaus' surviving siblings and you've got a "new" stable of beloved characters - with The Vampire Diaries' core cast intact.

What would they all do in New Orleans? Does it matter? The secondary, yet equally compelling (eh? eh?) reason this idea gets the green light from me: What else is the CW going to produce instead?

Think about it. Which would you rather watch next fall: The Originals Season 1 or 90210 Season 6? Hypothetical. Case. Closed.

Klaus at the Door

NO by Matt Richenthal

Too much of a good thing. That's the saying that comes to when I think of this spinoff.

Do I adore Joseph Morgan as Klaus? Yes. Do I giggle in delight every time he utters a "love" or refers to Stefan as the "Rippah?" Pretty much. But I'm actually of the opinion that Klaus should have been killed off to end The Vampire Diaries Season 3.

The (amazing) character has run his course. He goes back and forth now from sensitive artist to Mayor-murdering bad ass. He's a lost soul who, yes, ought to leave Mystic Falls behind. But I fear his anchoring of a new series for two key reasons:

  1. Julie Plec would executive produce both shows. It's hard to imagine this double task not diluting the original product, as many believe Grey's Anatomy suffered a drop in quality once Shonda Rhimes added Private Practice to her repertoire.
  2. The CW has said The Originals will be similar in tone to The Vampire Diaries. So... what would even be the point? It's just the same show, moved a few hundred miles south? I'd prefer something different entirely, with just a loose connection to TVD, as opposed to what sounds like an attempt by the network to copy what has already worked.

Naturally, I'm curious about the spinoff. I trust Plec and I love both Morgan and Tonkin. I'll most definitely give the show a shot, but as currently concocted, a show titled The Originals doesn't sound very original at all.

Where do you stand, TV Fanatics? Will you watch The Originals?

 

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Along with Kol, Elijah, and Rebekah, there is also a chance to bring back Sebastian Roché as Mikael. That guy has RAGE - I'd like to see more of that family dynamic with all of the (surviving) siblings.

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I think I may like the idea of a spinoff except for Hayley. She REALLY bugs me! Why is she even relevant when it comes to the originals? Remove Hayley from the spinoff and it will be a much better show.

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I love the idea of an Originals spin off. Just not with Hayley! I didn't like Phoebe Tonkin in Secret Circle and I haven't liked her any better in TVD. I love the character of Klaus and the other Originals too, I just can't picture how Hayley would even fit in with the Originals and I think it would totally ruin the show for me.

Miranda wicker

To Matt's point, if they spun this off as a werewolf tale with occasional appearances by vampires, that would work. If they plan to make TVD: Part Deux, I'm going to have to pass no matter how much I want the potential for more Elijah in my life.

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Some spin offs do surpass the original and even come to stand all on their own. Xena totally topped Hercules. I'm not saying that Diaries is bad, it's great. Just saying ther'es hope this could be as good if not better. Now wouldn't that be something.

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What happen to that other show she was suppose to help create.

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(cont.) On to more practical subjects, the existense of the two similar shows is very likely to cause a split in ratings. When you remove a fan favorite aspect from a show, the people who watched for that aspect (here, Original fans) are likely to leave, too. But these people won't be enough to make the new show a hit and the only thing that will get accomplished is that TVD's ratings will get hurt. Conclusion: the CW will have sabotaged a long-time successful show without even managing to create a new hit. Why can't the network's execs see this trap is beyond me...
And I agree with Matt's point that Plec's involvement in BOTH shows can only cause problems. She's already struggling with TVD, how is she going to deal with another task like that?

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"A desperate attempt by the network to milk one of its only hits dry" is a very accurate description of what the CW is trying to do with this spinoff idea. They've tried to pair TVD with various shows on Thursday nights (Nikita, The Secret Circle, Beauty and the Beast) but nothing worked rating-wise. So why not add another hour of TVD? It's risky and it's desperate, but it's also a pretty obvious move. The truth is I love me some Originals, but after two seasons they have become an integral part of TVD and I can't imagine how their removal from the story can be smooth as it should be. Also, a big part of why they are popular with the fans is their interaction with TVD's other characters. Removing that part of their appeal could be tricky. On to more practical subjects, the existense of the two similar shows is very likely to cause a split in ratings. When you remove a fan favorite aspect from a show, the people who watched for that aspect (here, Original fans) are likely to leave, too. But these people won't be enough to make the new show a hit and the only thing that will get accomplished is that TVD's ratings will get hurt. Conclusion: the CW will have sabotaged a long-time successful show without even managing to create a new hit. Why can't the network's execs see this trap is beyond me...
And I agree with Matt's point that Plec's involvement in BOTH shows can only cause problems. She's already struggling with TVD, how is she going to deal with another task like that? P.S. Matt, I don't understand how you cannot accept that someone who has lived 1000 years (a very messed up 1000 years if I may add) can have both sensitivities and murderous tendencies. That's the beauty of the character tbh.

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I wish they went with the title that Daniel Gillies proposed when the first rumors of a TVD spinoff occured: Original. So simple. "The Originals" reads so... painfully.

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i am definitely in the yes camp with this one!!! i would love to see much more of Klaus and his siblings and it has been difficult to give them deserved air time in the fourth season. i don't think Klaus can be killed off though because he is the original blood line for the central characters, so i guess he just gets bored with Mystic Falls!

Vampire Diaries Quotes

You want a love that consumes you. You want passion and adventure, and even a little danger... I want you to get everything you're looking for. But for right now, I want you to forget that this happened. Can't have people knowing I'm in town yet. Goodnight, Elena.

Damon

I wanna say thank you for giving me everything I always wanted. A love to consume me, and passion, and adventure. There's nothing more I could ever want than for it to last forever, but it can't. This is the last time I'm gonna see you. This is goodbye, Damon.

Elena [to Damon]