The Originals Boss Previews Klaus' Clashes With Hope, Caroline and More in Final Season Premiere

The Originals Season 5

Tonight’s premiere of The Originals‘ final season (The CW, 9/8c) may signify the beginning of the end for the Mikaelsons, but it’s also presents a “new beginning” for the flawed family.

“When you have such a significant time jump, you get the opportunity as storytellers to create the past for each of these characters,” executive producer Julie Plec tells TVLine. “As we meet them, we’re meeting them in a different time in a new place with a new attitude, so it really does feel like a clean beginning to the season.”

And no one has changed more during the seven-year gap between seasons than Hope, now a rebellious teenager with enough firepower and daddy issues to make her… well, a Mikaelson.

“Hope’s issue with Klaus is that she’s well aware of the kind of vampire and man that he is, and what really frustrates her is that he’s trying to coddle and protect her from those harsh truths,” Plec explains. “His instinct is to run and hide because he doesn’t want her to see his real self.”

(Side note: Is “running and hiding” really the worst instinct when the fate of the world depends on the Mikaelsons — Klaus, Elijah, Rebekah and Kol — staying as far away from each other as possible?)

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Love is also in the cards for Season 5. Marcel and Rebekah, for example, having finally been given “the opportunity over the years to have a real, functional relationship” in New York. Plec teases, “We’ll get a glimpse at Rebekah’s willingness to commit — or not to commit — depending on where she is in her life right now.”

As for Freya and Keelin, who are still together after seven years, will “struggle to keep their relationship strong in spite of each of them needing to live their own lives.” (Spoiler alert: There’s a lot of fun, magical Skype-ing in store for those two.)

Even Hayley, whose relationship with Elijah formally fizzled out in Season 4 — along with his memories — has found happiness during the jump with Declan (Reign‘s Torrance Coombs), a flirty Irish chef. Because, as Plec points out, “Who’s going to compete with Elijah but a handsome Irishman?”

And unless you’ve been willfully ignoring news about this show, you also know that tonight’s premiere reunites Klaus with Caroline Forbes, a pairing not seen on screen since The Vampire Diaries‘ fifth season.

Quoting Plec from our previous interview, “What people can expect and count on is a nice thread of Caroline as a guiding counselor to Klaus in terms of fatherhood. She’s a mother, she lost her husband and she knows [Klaus] very well — better than some of the people in New Orleans. She understands the desire he has to be a good person in the name of his daughter, and she’s very quick to recognize that he’s not doing a good job. She’s a friend, a support system and she calls him on his s–t.”

Your hopes for The Originals‘ final season? Drop ’em in a comment below.