A Star Wars-y title card greets us: “Not very long ago at all…” An alarm is blaring on a spaceship, where humans and some sort of non-human creatures are anticipating the entrance of a bad guy. He looks like Darth Vader, and Lizzie isn’t happy to see him. She runs into Josie, who guesses that they’re still tripping. Lizzie tells her that Lord Marshall, the leader of the Galactic Dominion, is coming after them. They need to get off the ship as quickly as possible.
Lizzie figures that Josie knows a way out, since she’s some sort of android and must have a memory bank with helpful info. Josie scoffs at that, but it turns out she knows the location of the closest escape pod. On a nearby planet, a scavenger dressed a lot like Rey from the Star Wars sequels sees the pod hit the ground.
As the twins emerge onto the desert-liked planet, Josie’s memory banks tell her that Lizzie is actually Princess Elizabeth Saltzstar. Josie is J-O 513, Lizzie’s android sister and personal valet. She’s understandably annoyed that she’s not a princess, too. Lizzie says this might just be how she sees herself. The scavenger, Hope, comes across them and realizes they’re still tripping. “I have a bad feeling about this,” she says.
In reality, M.G.’s back at the Salvatore School, and his greetings from his classmates are much warmer than he was no doubt expecting. Not so with Kaleb, though. He’s taken over M.G.’s space in their room for himself, and he barely talks to his returning roommate. Alaric senses the tension.
Hope, Lizzie, and Josie decide that they’re having a shared hallucination and need to find a way out of it. Lizzie thinks they should just wait it out until the Triad drug wears off. Hope reminds her that Andi was raising something, and it would probably be bad if they were unconscious when it showed up. Lizzie hints to Josie to tap into her memory banks to help them out. Josie reports that they’re on a kind of vision quest, so the sooner they finish the story, the sooner they’ll be back to normal. So it’s like a therapy-box session, just without an escape word.
Hope could do without another personal journey, so Lizzie reframes it as just another fight against a villain. They’re not sure how to find that villain, but Josie has some sort of communication device stuck to her head that could help. It produces a hologram of General Alaric Saltzstar, who left his daughters behind to go find the Star Sword, the only weapon that will kill Lord Marshall. It’s on the planet Mystic Falls. General Saltzstar tells his daughters not to come look for him and promises to return as soon as he can.
Lizzie sums up the mission: Find Alaric, use the sword to beat the bad guy, and wake up. As far as hero’s journeys go, it’s not that complicated. Hope suggests that they go into town and ask if people know anything. She’s pretty sure “town” will turn out to be Mystic Falls, which means they’ll probably be interacting with some colorful characters.
In the real Mystic Falls, Kaleb checks in with Alaric, asking if there’s been any word on Cleo. Nope, nothing since she left the school. Kaleb heard about the wendigo and is disappointed that he lost money in the monster pool. Alaric is on his way to visit Dorian, and Kaleb offers to drive him, but Alaric has something else in mind for him to do. It involves working with M.G.
The girls go to a bar where Lizzie has a hunch they’ll find Alaric. A cyclops demands a password, which Lizzie provides with embarrassment: GANDALF4EVA. She admits that the scenario they’re stuck in is actually a story she wrote when she was 11.
cantina bar, Lizzie says she doesn’t remember everything she wrote. She definitely doesn’t remember a scavenger character, so she’s not sure why Hope is there. Josie’s annoyed that all her character does is support Lizzie and clean up her messes, as if she was written not to have any wants or needs of her own. “Don’t make me unplug you,” Lizzie threatens.
Hope notes that at least Josie has a cool outfit, a backstory, and a last name. Lizzie defends herself, saying she was 11. They shouldn’t read too much into this. She basically just plagiarized books and movies she was into at the time. Hope asks what happens next.
The bartender serves them drinks sent over by Lizzie’s version of Han Solo, whose name is Dak Romo. “Am I the only one that noticed that it’s actually Ethan?” Josie murmurs. Instead of Chewbacca, he’s accompanied by a mer-man. Hope notes that they didn’t know Ethan when they were kids. Lizzie replies that they’re not kids in the story, so maybe their current minds are making some edits. (Landon is going to be disappointed that no one’s mind edits him into the story.)
Alaric has tasked M.G. and Kaleb with burying the wendigo’s body in the woods, obviously wanting them to confront their issues while they’re forced to work together. Kaleb claims he’s not mad at M.G. and everything’s fine. M.G. suggests that they camp out there that night and show that their friendship is still strong. They hear a noise nearby and brace for a monster, but it’s Jed. Kaleb invited him along as a buffer.
Lizzie’s pleased that Dak got her hyper-texts. She hired him to find Alaric, but he’s had no luck. When Hope calls him Dr. Saltzman instead of his fictional name, General Saltzstar, Dak says there’s a Ric Saltzman who lives on the rim of the planet. Apparently it never occurred to him that they might be the same person. Lizzie asks for Ric’s address, which Dak gives her on a sliver of glass (it looks like a slide you’d use in a microscope). The two of them are looking flirtatious, so Hope asks if they can move things along.
The mer-man (Mermy) hisses, and Dak says Lord Marshall must have some minions nearby. Ninjas enter the bar and start robbing the patrons. Josie can’t believe there are ninjas in Lizzie’s space-set story. Dak tells the girls to leave, and as he’s about to launch into some flowery goodbye to Lizzie, Hope cuts him off and hurries everyone out. Lizzie stays behind long enough for a goodbye kiss, though. She tells Dak he’s everything she dreamed of and more.
Alaric visits Dorian, who’s still in the hospital recovering from the wendigo attack. He’s happy to see Alaric, at least until Emma enters. Dorian pretends to be mad that Alaric pressured him into helping out because M.G. went on a Ripper bender. Clearly Emma has already been told this story, and she’s mad that Alaric’s there, since he’s already done enough damage.
Hope, Lizzie, and Josie find Ric Saltzman’s home, but Josie’s hesitant to speak to him, worried that he might not be happy to see his daughters. Hope says he’s still their father, even in a different galaxy. While General Saltzstar looked healthy and clear-headed back when he made his hologram message, he now looks like he spent the weekend at Burning Man and is still coming down from an extraordinary amount of drugs. He greets Hope before he acknowledges his daughters.
Lizzie asks where he’s been for the last eight years. He didn’t realize that much time had passed. He came looking for the Star Sword, which the girls think he found. Nope, it’s just some kind of metal cylinder he drinks out of it. He gave up on his mission because it was too much work: “Fomenting a revolution, that’s a real drag, man. It’s not all pew-pew-pew and heroic speeches.” Rebellion seemed like a good idea at the beginning, “but, you know, it’s only destined to become another form of government.” He’s much happier living off the grid.
The twins are hurt that he’s been having such a great life without them. General Saltzstar is sorry that he left them, but he thought they would make their own path. Hope tells him they’re on the same mission he was. He says that the Star Sword can only be used by the chosen one. Figuring out who that is will take even more work. But if they find the sword, he hopes they’ll bring it to him.
Josie suddenly gets up, announcing that they need to leave. Outside, she tells Lizzie and Hope that she remembered something about the story. A panel in her side opens, revealing that she’s had the sword the whole time. Lizzie realizes that she would only know that if she’d read Lizzie’s story in her diary. Josie says she just wanted to understand why Lizzie was having trouble with her emotions. Lizzie calls her a traitor.
Hope calls for peace and says this is convenient for them. They have the sword, and Lizzie most likely made herself the chosen one in the story, so they just need to find the villain. Josie knows about that, too. Lord Marshall’s ninjas arrive just then, wielding guns (again, an 11-year-old wrote this). Hope tells Lizzie to fight them with the Star Sword, but it doesn’t work for her. She hands it to Hope, but she can’t activate it, either. “Oh, well, at least that’s a halfway decent twist,” Lizzie comments.
Josie knows she’s not the chosen one, either. She also knows that there’s another twist: “This is the part where we realize who betrayed us.” General Saltzstar emerges and tells the girls that Lord Marshall’s plan to restore order to the galaxy is better than General Saltzstar’s was. He tells the ninjas to capture them.
The girls get locked up and restrained with anti-magic shackles. Hope chastises Josie for not knowing that this would happen. Josie admits that parts of Lizzie’s story were too scary for her, so she didn’t read all of it. Lizzie complains that she probably read all her other secrets. Indeed, Josie knows about the two weeks where Lizzie had a crush on Jed.
Hope asks why Lizzie wrote a story where her father betrays them. Lizzie says that seeing General Saltzstar reminded her of how she felt when she was writing the story. She was struggling with her mental health and was afraid that she and Josie couldn’t count on Alaric. She thought that if it came down to a choice between them and Hope, he would choose Hope. Hope notes that she wasn’t even in the story. Lizzie corrects that she doesn’t know what Hope is doing there, as in there with her. She’s supposed to be the villain, Lord Hope Marshall.
“I’m not the villain here,” Alaric defends himself to Emma at the hospital. Things just got out of hand. She tells him this is his pattern – he’s drawn to risky situations and drags other people in with him. That’s the only way he knows how to connect. People put themselves in danger to feel close to him, including his daughters. Alaric tells her to leave them out of this. Furthermore, Dorian volunteered to help find the wend…uh, Wendy. Hey, whatever happened to Wendy, anyway?
They hear an alert over the PA system calling a trauma team to Dorian’s room. His wound has reopened and won’t stop bleeding. Emma demands to know what’s really going on. Alaric tells her that Dorian was attacked by a wendigo, and if the wound isn’t healing, there’s only one explanation.
M.G. finishes burying the wendigo and confronts Kaleb for inviting Jed out with them when he doesn’t even like Jed. Kaleb says a lot changed at the school while M.G. was at Mystic Falls High. M.G. thinks Kaleb’s mad because he left. Actually, Kaleb’s mad because he played superhero, which could have exposed the Salvatore School. M.G. reminds him that they’ve talked about using their vampire powers for good before. “At least I did something while you were being Switzerland,” he says. Kaleb’s mad about that, but he zooms off instead of continuing the argument. M.G. thinks he’s running away, but he’s turned his attention back to their mission. He’s zoomed to the wendigo’s grave, which is now empty.
Hope isn’t surprised that she’s the villain in Lizzie’s story. Josie notes that Hope didn’t want anything to do with them or their classmates, so they thought she hated them. Plus, Lizzie adds, Alaric started devoting all his time to keeping an eye on Hope, so the twins felt abandoned. That’s when Lizzie started acting out and demanding attention from Josie. That led to Josie becoming the sister who cleans up all the messes. Hope apologizes, saying she didn’t know what they were going through. Josie notes that they didn’t know what she was going through, either.
Hope asks who’s in the Lord Marshall armor, if it’s not her. Lizzie doesn’t know. She couldn’t find a way to make herself the chosen one, so she stopped writing the story. They could be stuck there forever. But a new hero arrives via a ceiling vent. It’s Hope, back when she was 12. “I’m Hope Marshall and I’m here to rescue you,” she announces.
The younger Hope (I’ll just call her Marshall) takes the girls to her lair, where she’s been plotting revenge on the Galactic Dominion. She’d like the girls’ help. As she goes off to get them some water, Hope sees that she’s hung the full-moon painting in the lair. Lizzie doesn’t remember this character from her story, but Hope does. Marshall is an orphaned space-witch who makes magical gadgets out of spaceship parts. Hope wrote a sequel to Lizzie’s story. “Is there anyone in this freaking galaxy who has not read my diary?” Lizzie seethes. Hope swears she didn’t read the diary; she heard Josie telling some other witches about the story. Josie quickly apologizes for that.
Hope didn’t like being a villain, and she threw a tantrum and set the woods on fire. Emma encouraged her to write her own story where she was the hero. Then the girls could hopefully be friends. Josie asks why Hope didn’t tell them earlier. Well, because Hope didn’t expect her “unauthorized fanfic” to show up in their shared hallucination. Also, she finds it sad and embarrassing. Josie doesn’t think it’s as embarrassing as Dak Romo. Heh. Lizzie asks if this means that Hope knows who Lord Marshall is. Emma told Hope that the villain should be whatever she was most afraid of, and she should find a way to defeat the fear.
Marshall returns and suggests that they make dinner. Josie figures that’s her job, since she’s a service android. Marshall tells her that’s just a disguise – she’s a protector. Also, Lizzie may be a princess, but she’s also super-smart, and she can find a way for them to sneak into Lord Marshall’s throne room. Marshall isn’t sure who Hope is, so Hope says she’s just a scavenger like Marshall. Marshall replies that she’s more than that, and scavengers are good at fighting. She asks Hope to help. Lizzie says they need to figure out what the villain is before they can fight them. Marshall already knows: It’s the Hollow.
Kaleb thinks Alaric set him and M.G. up – he sent them on a mission with a body that disappeared, and they happen to conveniently have a book with all the answers. It’s just a test of their teamwork. Alaric and Dorian have probably been watching them the whole time. M.G. doesn’t think they would be that manipulative. Kaleb says this was just designed to get him and M.G. to mend their friendship. There’s no wendigo, so he’s going home.
Lizzie remembers that the Hollow was the entity that she and Josie exorcised from Hope, but the twins don’t know anything more about it. Marshall tells them that it took over her body once and made her do horrible things. It’s why her family had to leave her alone on the planet. Now she has people who will fight it with her. Once the Hollow is gone for good, her parents will come back and her family will be together again. Then Marshall can tell the girls her real name and they can be friends and form their own coven.
“That’s not how this story ends,” Hope says. “Defeating the Hollow doesn’t bring your family back.” Marshall doesn’t want to hear it. Hope tells her that Klaus already defeated the Hollow. Marshall asks why he hasn’t come back for her, then. The Galactic Dominion shouldn’t be there, either. Hope says she’s afraid of something else now, but she knows how to defeat it. She’s known for a while now. Josie wants to discuss things first, but Marshall says she’s tired of talking. Hope is, too. She knocks the other three out with a sleep spell and leaves.
Once they’re conscious again, Marshall leads Josie and Lizzie to Salvatore Castle, where they’ll find Lord Marshall’s throne room. Josie IDs the spot on her holographic map as the dining hall. Hilariously, Marshall is confused that they eat breakfast in the throne room. Lizzie confirms that she knows a way inside. Marshall says it’ll take three days to get there. Just then, General Saltzstar pulls up in a dune buggy. He’s had a change of heart. Lizzie isn’t surprised that he’s the hero in Hope’s story. Marshall’s confused about that, too, but Lizzie just tells her it’s complicated. General Saltzstar offers the girls a ride, and Marshall calls shotgun. Heh.
M.G. would also like a ride, and Kaleb’s surprised that he doesn’t want to keep his distance after everything Kaleb said. M.G. thinks he deserved it. He should have listened to Kaleb from the start. Kaleb asks about Jed, and M.G. says he can walk. Kaleb tosses M.G. his keys, but before M.G. can catch them, Kaleb zooms over and shoves him to the ground. He says this obvious M.G. impostor made one big mistake: “M.G. would never leave a man behind, even one he can’t stand. So we’re not wendigo-ing anywhere.” Nice.
Hope arrives at Salvatore Castle and walks right into the throne room, where the Star Sword is just sitting there unguarded. Lord Marshall enters and extends her own sword. I guess she’s a she, since the Hollow was female. Whatever, who cares? It’s time for a
lightsaber sword fight!
M.G. comes across Kaleb fighting the wendigo, which still looks exactly like him. Jed reads that they take human form to get an easy meal. Cool, that’s really helpful. Thanks, Jed! He rallies M.G. to jump in with him to help Kaleb: “Time to kick your own a%$.” Heh. Two vampires and a werewolf vs. a wendigo is a pretty short battle, especially since M.G. already knows how to kill one.
Hope and Lord Marshall’s sword fight takes much longer, but the result is the same: The hero wins. Lizzie, Josie, Marshall, and General Saltzstar run in just as Hope has finished off the villain. Marshall is pleased that Hope killed the Hollow, but that’s not what happened. Hope pulls off Lord Marshall’s helmet, revealing Malivore inside the armor. Oh, so I guess I was wrong to say “she.” Sorry I misgendered you, Malivore! Please don’t eat me!
Josie realizes this “vision quest” was really about finding a way to defeat Malivore. Hope repeats what she said before: She already knows how to do that. She has to become the tribrid. Just then, the girls wake up at the pit, having recovered from the Triad drug.
The guys set the wendigo’s remains on fire and roast marshmallows over the flames. As Jed goes to get beer, Kaleb bring up the topic of M.G. using his vampire powers to help people. M.G. thinks he’s going to get a lecture about taking risks, but that’s not Kaleb’s intention. He’s always sticking his neck out for M.G. because he knows M.G. will change the world one day. Kaleb just thought he would be by M.G.’s side at the time instead of Ethan. M.G. says maybe that can happen.
Their friendship officially fixed, Kaleb tells M.G. he needs advice about the feelings he started developing for Cleo. M.G. teases that he has it bad. Kaleb jokes that he doesn’t have it as bad as Jed does for Alyssa. He realizes it’s too soon for that kind of comment, but M.G.’s okay with it. He’s in a great mood since they nailed their first heroic mission together. They do a handshake that includes a dance, then hug, saying they love each other. Jed makes it a three-person hug, feeling the love.
Dorian’s okay now, and Alaric is inspired by M.G. and Kaleb’s healed friendship to try to patch things up with Emma. She tells him there’s no need to, since she overstepped. Alaric says she’s right that he puts himself in dangerous situations and gets people he cares about involved. But if he’s going to be in his daughters’ world, it’s going to keep happening. He’s just glad they’ll keep doing it together. As he keeps trying to teach his students, together is the only way they’ll get through it.
Alaric promises that he has Dorian’s back, but if Emma wants him to keep his distance so Dorian will stay out of the supernatural world, Alaric will understand. Emma notes that, like Alaric with the twins, Dorian will always be in the supernatural world, being married to a witch. She’s going to let him decide how deep he gets into it. She just doesn’t want him to lie to her about it. She tells Alaric that he’s a “hard man to quit,” then goes to see her husband.
The girls debrief at the pit, talking about how weird the day was. Josie tries to assure Hope that she’s not fated to live out the events of a story she wrote as a kid. Hope disagrees. Her fate has been sealed since the day she was born: “There’s always a loophole to magic, and I’m the loophole.” If she exists to defeat Malivore, at some point she’ll have to stop fighting her destiny and accept it.
Josie knows that Hope doesn’t want everything that will come with becoming a tribrid. Hope says the story made her remember why. Her life has been trauma after trauma after trauma. Becoming a tribrid will trap her in trauma forever, like she’s stuck with the memory of the family she’s lost. Lizzie’s sorry that they couldn’t see how she was hurting when they were kids, but now it’s different because they’re different. Lizzie’s still a “work in progress,” but she’s a much better version of herself. Josie has become stronger and more independent. Hope can be whatever she wants, too: “A new Hope.”
Hope thinks the universe is saying the opposite. Cleo was right when she said Hope has always known the way to defeat Malivore. She’s the only one who can stop him and the monsters that keep coming. If she doesn’t, she could lose someone else she loves. She wanted to love someone and not lose them for once, and she thought she had that with Landon. Josie note that Hope only became the tribrid in the story because she faced Malivore alone. The Super Squad won’t let that happen. Lizzie seconds that, saying it’s a panda promise. The girls hook pinkies and hug.
Behind them, Hope sees that something has left footprints coming out of the pit. The girls follow them to Andi’s cabin and hear someone in the shower. It’s their old nemesis Clarke, and he looks happy to be able to mess with them once again.
Etc.: I’m not overly familiar with the Star Wars movies, so if you want a list of all the references in this episode, I’m not the person to ask. I included as much as I could of what I knew.
This is another episode with a different title card.
Another thing I’m not overly familiar with: football. But I assume that Dak Romo is a combo of Dak Prescott and Tony Romo.
This show loves that mer-man, huh?
Chewbacca should have been Jed. You know, ’cause he’s a werewolf.
The school should invest in some kind of incinerator so people don’t have to keep burying monsters’ bodies. Though maybe that counts toward a physical education requirement.
While it’s nice to see Summer Fontana (who played Hope in season 4 of The Originals) again, it’s impossible to ignore the fact that she has red hair and blue eyes while Danielle Rose Russell (teen Hope) has brown hair and her eyes are a different shade of blue.
Aww, the full-moon painting. What a nice touch.
What’s especially sad about the Marshall character is that Hope wasn’t an orphan yet when she wrote her story – this would have been between seasons 4 and 5 of The Originals, when the Mikaelsons had taken in pieces of the Hollow and separated. It’s horrible that Hope felt like she’d been abandoned at the Salvatore School when really Hayley sent her there because she needed that kind of environment.
In the previous episode, Lizzie got through to Josie by taunting that she wasn’t as strong and independent as she wants to be. Here, she uses those same traits to describe how Josie has grown. It’s like a little apology for the way Lizzie got under her skin before.