The titular family in The Originals is always caught between having each other’s back and going for each other’s throat, so it’s no easy trick to be the girl stuck in a love triangle with two Original brothers. Yet somehow Hayley (Phoebe Tonkin), the lady in question, managed to make it through the first season – kind of. Before taking the stage for a Comic-Con panel I sat down with Tonkin for a roundtable interview. She talked about Hayley’s mental state at the start of season two, how she’s dealing with the loss of Hope, her relationships with Elijah (Danielle Gilles) and Klaus (Joseph Morgan), her experience filming the emotional season one finale, and more. Hit the jump to see what she had to say about The Originals season 2, and please be aware there are major season one spoilers.
PHOEBE TONKIN: When we find Hayley in the second season it’s three months after the finale, and even though she’s still a mess and she’s still lost, it’s not as fresh. She’s kind of looking to Klaus a little bit for guidance, not in a romantic way, but in just a mental way. She really wants to know how to deal with these intense feelings that she’s having both physically and also emotionally. I think her priority is to find out who tried to kill her and her baby and why. She never wants to feel like she’s never going to see her baby again. She just wants to make New Orleans safe enough of an environment so she can bring her kid back and it’s not bringing the baby back straight into a warzone.
So what about the sort of love triangle- well now you have three guys.
TONKIN: She’s really busy.
So what about Elijah and kind of Klaus?
TONKIN: Yeah, what’s kind of beautiful and Joe and I have talked about this a lot is that it’s a really interesting kind of relationship. It definitely is kind of a mentor/student relationship and it’s almost a bit brother and sister, not in a weird way. They’re both really tough and I think Hayley feels like she can be the one to call Klaus out when he’s not behaving properly. That’s been a really nice dynamic to play. Then there’s always Jackson and Elijah, but I think she’s kind of taking a step back from Elijah right now, because obviously that’s a little bit more romantic and at the moment romance is just not Hayley’s priority whatsoever. It’s just revenge and learning how to be a hybrid. She’s almost- all us girls do this, but we kind of close ourselves off and I think she’s closing herself off to Elijah. That’s what we kind of discover in the first few episodes. And it’s quite heartbreaking to see, because I think Elijah is probably the best thing to ever happen to Hayley, it’s the only family she’s ever really known and just because of the circumstances she’s pushing him away. So that’s what we’re going to explore in the second season.
TONKIN: Jackson…it’s definitely an unusual situation. What I think Hayley wants is to find out more about that situation. I think she wants to know about her family, first of wall. She wants to know about this royal line of werewolves that she’s a part of and she wants to know more about him. I think she kind of needs to know more about this arranged marriage before she really gets too close to him. But he’s very supportive of her and Hayley unfortunately has never really had any support in her life, so any time someone wants to look after her she kind of trusts them, maybe a little too much. But we’ll see. We’ll see what happens.
You mentioned she’s on this path for vengeance and since she’s no longer pregnant, are we going to see her come into her power a little more?
TONKIN: Definitely. I think now that she’s a hybrid and she feels pretty invincible- even though she felt pretty invincible beforehand. Yeah, she’s definitely- I mean physically she’s just stronger. And she’s kind of on a little bit of a kamikaze mission, because even though hope is alive she doesn’t know if she’ll ever be able to live like a mother and look after hope in the way that she planned. So she’s kind of just going all out and she doesn’t really care what happens to her, because she doesn’t really think she has anything to lose.
What was it like filming that climactic finale scene from last season?
TONKIN: It was a lot. It was filmed over twelve hours, that one scene, so it was a lot of screaming and crying. It was very emotionally draining. But it was also- I mean, I had that baby belly on for basically full term. I think I had it on for nine months, so even the idea that was the end, it was almost like I was mourning the end of that storyline a little bit. And when that baby came and when we shot that baby coming, you kind of get transported. It was such a release, because it was such a big part of that character and the way everything had played out in the first season. But it was also very technical. We had this poor little six week old baby covered in goo. Half of me – the actress in me was into it, the other half was like, “Is she okay? I don’t want to hurt the real baby!” Especially when my throat got slit and I was dying but also trying to carefully hand the baby off. We were all really proud of that episode because we did work really really hard on it. We were all really excited when we saw it and saw how it turned out.
Are we going to see more action from her? We saw her throw some punches, but not a whole lot because of her condition. Have you been doing training?
TONKIN: I mean, not really, but now what’s really nice – and I’m just remembering because we filmed it a while ago, Klaus kind of explains to her the hybrid senses, the vamp hearing, all those things that she doesn’t really know anything about. No one’s given her a handbook on how to be a vampire or a hybrid, so she’s just kind of learning. I think especially with the vampires it’s not necessarily physical, it’s just in their manner that they are just threatening in their voice and the way that they handle things – because they are the most powerful and terrifying creatures that there are. Especially now that she’s a hybrid, she’s one of two hybrids and that’s kind of terrifying in itself.