From the moment Camille O’Connell first appeared in Season 4 of The Vampire Diaries to the moment she bid farewell on Friday’s The Originals, she never stopped looking for her purpose — and, ideally, herself in the process. In fact, during her three-season transformation from bartender to psychologist to vampire, the only constant was Pipes’ commitment to the under-appreciated role.
But she never played into her character’s insecurities. In spite of her dark surroundings, Pipes always infused Cami with a sense of optimism that only made her untimely death all the more heartbreaking.
Well, that and Pipes’ killer execution — so to speak — of her final scenes opposite Joseph Morgan. Every phase of Cami’s death was excruciating, and Pipes sold the hell out of ’em, from her initial strength (“I’ve made my peace with dying”) to her eventual breakdown (“I wanted to be brave”). And don’t even get us started on her “Maybe that’s just how you know you love someone” line, spoken to Klaus. Much like Cami after receiving Lucien’s fatal bite, our tear ducts never stood a chance this week.
Of course, the other tragedy of the episode was that we were given a glimpse into what could have been, but ultimately would never be, between Cami and Klaus. With their characters finally willing to drop all pretenses, Pipes and Morgan’s chemistry — previously inhibited by Klaus and Cami’s inability to make sense of what they had — got to shine for several glorious minutes.
We may never know Cami’s full potential as a character, but like ol’ Niklaus said, we’ll carry Pipes’ performance with us for a nice long while.