Niklaus Mikaelson is an anti-hero/antagonist of the Vampire Diaries and the main protagonist (and sometimes antagonist/anti-hero) in spin-off TV show, The Originals and he currently lives in New Orleans. He appears in The Vampire Diaries second, third and fourth seasons as an antagonist; he also appears in the fifth and seventh seasons as a special guest star, his role more heroic than the first three seasons. As the anti-hero of The Originals, he is an antagonist of Season 1 and the anti-hero in Season 2. He is the half-brother of Freya, Elijah, Finn, Kol, Rebekah, and Henrik as well as the father of Hope Mikaelson. Even though he is one of the antagonists of the first season, it's because of his plotting and scheming to protect his daughter that he is actually the anti-villain of the show.
He is portrayed by Joseph Morgan.
While he was still an untriggered werewolf, Klaus had a complicated life. He was close with his half-sister Rebekah, whom he affectionately called "Bekah", and with his half-brothers Elijah and Henrik. He also had a close relationship with his half-brother, Kol, but he did not get along at all with his half-brother Finn, since childhood. However, he had a bad relationship with his overbearing step-father Mikael who was harder on him than any of his siblings. He was a victim of his step-father's physical and verbal abuse since childhood. Klaus even admitted to Rebekah that Mikael frightened him which made him constantly seek his approval without ever finding it. His mother Esther often tried to calm Mikael when he became angry with Klaus, but she never tried to stop him from humiliating or from physically/mentally abusing her son. Also as an untriggered werewolf, Klaus had the aggressive behavior of one, but he could not act on it due to his mother making him wear a magical necklace, created to weaken his strength and thus leaving him vulnerable to Mikael's abuse. These following reasons led him to resent both his parents and possibly to be jealous of his maternal half-siblings for having their approval. In the director's cut of the backdoor pilot of The Originals, Elijah pointed out that as an untriggered werewolf, Klaus was so full of love and life, and that all he ever wanted was to be loved in return, especially by his step-father. This belief that no one loved him and that he was doomed to be alone forever was the main factor that changed Klaus's personality.
Original Vampire-Original Hybrid
When Klaus was just in the early stages of being a hybrid, he slaughtered six villagers. Which afterwards, he was devastated and cried into Elijah's shoulder. After finding out that Mikael is not his biological father, he was shocked and betrayed.
Klaus is continuously described as being cruel, sadistic, careless, paranoid, reckless, impulsive, short-tempered, aggressive, volatile, unpredictable, slightly unreasonable, narcissistic, manipulative, jealous, obsessive and competitive. Though he shows little to no regard for human life in general, Klaus feels guilt and remorse for most of his actions, he just does not show it, and he has morals. Despite his negative traits, Klaus has shown to be very protective of his younger half-sister Rebekah, who stayed by his side for centuries, and he is not pure evil, he is just sadistic. Unbeknownst to any, Klaus was not the son of Mikael, but the son of an alpha werewolf named Ansel, in another village which made Klaus aggressive, violent and angry. When he became a vampire, all these emotions were heightened and Klaus' temper became worse than ever. Years of humiliation and physical/emotional abuses at Mikael's hands and Esther's indifference, coupled with her rejection of him as her son, led Klaus to kill his own mother in revenge and for betraying him. After this, Klaus shut off his humanity to any but his family, killing any who crossed his path. Vengeful and power-hungry, he will stop at nothing to achieve his ends and remove those who stand in his way. However, Klaus does not believe that death is a punishment as seen when he denies Katherine death, instead keeping her alive so that she will suffer for having betrayed him. He will also place usefulness before pleasure and keeps people alive when it suits his needs. He has also shown a penchant for working with witches which was mentioned by Katherine. Klaus also has a sense of honor and will not go back on his word although, like his half-brother Elijah, he will always look for loopholes in the deals he makes.
He has also shown a sadistic side notably when he deals with humans or vampires who have crossed him, such as Elena, Damon and Katherine, (his sadistic nature is often mistaken as psychotic). However, Klaus' hunger for power actually hides a deep fear of being alone which must stem from his step-father's treatment of him. He wants the hybrids so that he will not be the sole member of his race as Esther intended when she placed the curse on him. He also desires, beyond anything else, to be reunited with friends and family as shown by his desire to have Stefan, his one-time friend, and his family back at his side. According to Elijah, Klaus also uses his cruelty to hide his fear of being alone. He has shown to have a softer side when he is around Caroline, or a member of his family, but rarely shows it around other people. Caroline brings out Klaus' humanity. He also holds grudges against the people who try to kill him, or members of his family, and rarely lets it go. Klaus is self-preserving whenever he is in a situation where he could be killed permanently, he reveals information that keeps him from being killed, like when he told Elijah that he didn't bury their family at sea, or when he told Stefan and Damon he is the one who sired their bloodline.
Klaus rarely gets made a fool out of and also doesn't like to be made a fool out of either. He is rarely caught off guard. Klaus is highly intelligent, calculating, thinks of contingencies, he (secretly) admits he makes mistakes and learns from them as well, and he is always two steps ahead of his enemies. Klaus is not a very forgiving person; as he rarely forgives people in general. Despite him being the world's most powerful immortal supernatural being, he often pretends to be arrogant to mask his fear of being alone, he is not completely fearless, he is afraid of the White Oak Stake, because it is the only physical weapon that can permanently kill him, other than the white oak stake, Klaus is also afraid of becoming like his step-father, Mikael. Klaus has a sarcastic sense of humor and he is also sarcastic even towards members of his own family. Despite his lust for power, Klaus still cares about the remaining members of his family. Despite being manipulative, he does not like being lied to or manipulated. He does not take being betrayed very well, especially if it is from a member of his family. He is not tolerant of people who disappoint him in general. He has very little tolerance for disloyalty, if any of his friends or family have try to kill him, or betrayed him to his enemies who wants him dead, Klaus disowns them and no longer see them as his friends or family; like Esther, Finn, Rebekah and Marcel. Klaus is ruthless and brutal towards his enemies, and he rarely shows any of his enemies mercy. Also if anyone tries to hurt or kill a member of his family, most of them will not live to regret it.
Klaus can sometimes be cold and ill-mannered, he is also not above killing children, if they are a threat to him or his family, despite this Klaus dislikes people in general who mistreat or abuse their children; due to how he was mistreated and abuse by his step-father, Mikael.
Do to the fact that he was betrayed by Esther, Klaus does not trust people in general, he only trust those who have proven themselves trustworthy to him.
He wants people in general, to be loyal to him and respect him of their own free will, he does not like to compel people to be loyal to him against their free will, he only does this if he believes they are plotting against him or his family.
Like Elijah, Klaus can easily be provoked when disrespected, as he has no tolerance for those that disrespect him, like his best friend Marcel, who spoke down to him, Klaus retaliated by biting Marcel's friend Thierry Vanchure, to teach his best friend a lesson, to never disrespect him again or there will be consequences.
Although he puts up a tough demeanor, deep down Klaus cares about his family; he just has a lot of difficulty showing it.
Initially, Klaus hated being a vampire, after he was turned into one, but he eventually accepted his vampire nature, although he revels/embraces both his werewolf and vampire natures, there is still some part of Klaus, that resents Mikael and Esther for turning him and his maternal half-siblings into vampires against their free will. He later admitted to Esther that he forgives her for turning them and prefers them as vampires.
During his time in New Orleans, Klaus has grown to genuinely care about his unborn child, and was deeply hurt/enraged when Elijah and Hayley falsely accused him of using her to sire more hybrids; that he violently bit Elijah in retaliation. Although, he does still maintain a twisted sense of humor about his child as he once referred to his child as "that" when discussion how to keep it and Hayley safe from Marcel. Klaus is also shown to be more mellow as he was shown to genuinely regret daggering Elijah and went out of his way to show how sorry he was, even going as far as to spare Agnes for trying to kill his unborn child just so Elijah could keep his word. It is possible that being in his former home, with his family, has caused his humanity to show more. Klaus has also shown to have matured greatly as he no longer uses the White Oak Dagger to put down his maternal half-siblings when he disagrees with them like before but instead settles things in a civil and sometimes violent matter.
As the baby's birth approached, Klaus became more and more protective of both her and Hayley. He even had a nursery built right next to Hayley's bedroom so she could be near her baby. His undying love for the child is evident as he willingly sent the child away from the chaos in New Orleans so that she could grow up properly in the loving arms of her aunt Rebekah.
Even if he is cruel, we can see he still has a part of humanity which is shown when he's about to cry when he sees his dead half-brother (Kol), when he admits his love for Caroline or when Hayley is pregnant of their child and he's fighting for her safety. Unlike Elijah, Klaus is far less calm, composed, and strategic in battle. Despite his temper, Klaus is shown to be very keen as he was able to figure out that Hope would be sacrificed at the cemetery because it was where the Harvest and the Reaping took place as well as the location of the ancestral witches' burial place. Klaus does seem to care about Tyler to a degree. When he told Caroline he defeated Tyler, he left out the detail that Tyler tried to kill Hayley and his unborn child. This could be due to not wanting Caroline to hate Tyler, however, it is very likely that he just wanted to keep his child's existence a secret as much as possible, as Klaus has made many enemies over the years, (until his child is old enough to protect herself). Klaus also did mention after Stefan watched knowingly as he walked into a trap by his hybrids, he wanted to kill Stefan but he fought the urge to and mentioned it took three days to finally lose the urge to kill Stefan, when he could have ended it in an instant by killing Stefan.
In Season Two of The Originals. Klaus is shown to have developed strong paternal instincts since the birth of Hope. One such case is his belief a parent who trades their child for anything deserves a punishment worse than death. Klaus has also mellowed great deal a since season 1, so much so he, in an ironic twist of fate, restrained Elijah when he lost his temper when Finn threatened Rebekah (and unknowingly Hope) unlike before where he would just let the blood flow. Klaus' main concern is keeping his daughter safe now that she has returned home.
Klaus has also developed strong friendship instincts. One example was when he gave up an opportunity to kill Mikael when he threw Papa Tunde's Blade at Camille and chose to safe guard her life over killing Mikael.
Although he is paranoid and mistrustful, these traits have proven to be correct on more then one occasion, like with his maternal half-sister Freya, who he does not trust to begin with, due to the fact that she resurrected his maternal half-brother Finn, and indirectly helped the latter find Hope.
Since the birth of his daughter, Klaus has become far more mature, responsible and selfless, and far less reckless, impulsive and selfish, as Hope has brought out the best inside him. Despite this, he still can be, though to a far less extent; cruel, sadistic, vengeful, ruthless, manipulative and jealous as when he declared only he will decide what is the best way to protect his daughter not his maternal half-siblings or Hayley, and Dahlia picked up the fact that he fears Hope will grow up to call her step-father Jackson "Daddy".
Klaus has grown to dislike people in general who treat his daughter like a democracy, as she is a person, despite the fact when Davina had the power of the Harvest, he treated her like a weapon, although this was only because Davina behave more like a weapon then a person.
Klaus is a brilliant strategist, and skilled in making people suffer, traits he inherited from his mother. however, unlike Esther, he never underestimated members of his family, or his enemies, he committed immoral acts; he killed Elijah's girlfriend Gia, and daggered him with Papa Tunde's Blade, compelled Marcel to kill Rebekah, (who is in the body of the late Eva Sinclair) if she tries to escape the compound, had Dahlia reactivate the Crescent Curse on the Crescent Wolf Pack and Hayley. All these actions of his was partly as revenge/punishment for betraying him/for trying to take his daughter away from him, and mainly to gain Dahlia's trust to take her down.
Klaus is painted as the villain in the Mikaelson Family, for supposedly turning his back on his family, however, in truth, it is the other way around, as Elijah and Rebekah turned there backs on their maternal half-brother for their own selfishness, Klaus is the only one who never broke the Always and Forever vow, as he has tried to keep his family together; albeit in a selfless way.
Just like in the TVD universe, Klaus still has guilt and remorse for most of his actions, however, he still refuses to show it; he only seem to show his remorseful nature towards Camille. He also still has morals and a sense of honor.
By the end of the second season, Klaus no longer has a sensitive side; as he no longer cares about what people in general think about him, particularly his maternal half-siblings and Hayley, with the exception of Camille and Hope.
In his new role as a parent - Klaus has gradually begun to reveal an unexpected aptitude towards the demands of fatherhood - placing his daughter's needs above his own. In the act of abdicating his rule over the French Quarter and handing the reigns of control back to Marcel for the sole purpose of focusing his attention on raising Hope - Klaus exhibits a phenomenal turn-around in his priorities and power-hungry nature as well as in embracing the advent of parenthood and the experience of a new, self-sacrificing love.
Unlike Mikael and Esther, Klaus acknowledges his mistakes as a parent, and learns from them as well.
As a member of the North East Atlantic Pack by blood, Klaus does not get along with any member of the Crescent Wolf Pack at all, for good reason, with the exception of Aiden and Hayley, until the latter betrayed him; by trying to take Hope away from him.
Klaus is an attractive man. His height is 5'11. Klaus possesses curled dirty-blond hair and light blue eyes that contrasts with his pearl-white skin. As a werewolf-vampire hybrid and a warrior (10th century), he is well-built. Klaus possesses a delicate and yet masculine face, possibly due to the fact that he was once a nobleman in the 15th century.
Klaus' clothing style is quite casual, usually seen wearing shirts, jeans and jackets, although he can also use a more classic and refined outfit if the situation requires it (ex: the ritual of the moonstone; the Original ball thrown by Esther). He uses accessories, such as leather bracelets or necklaces as seen in some scenes at the beginning of Season 3.
Powers and Abilities
As an Original Vampire, later the Original Hybrid, Klaus is the strongest of the original vampires, despite not being the oldest. His Werewolf side has given him additional powers the others do not possess, making him the most powerful immortal supernatural being in the world. Although his maternal half-siblings/his step-father have been able to fight him on almost even terms, however, this is not enough to defeat him. His powers improve with age, the consumption of human or vampire blood, assuming his werewolf form or utilizing his lycanthropic enhancements and the full moon. In Live and Let Die, it is shown that Mikael is slightly stronger than Klaus, however it should be noted that Mikael was still effected with werewolf venom and Klaus was not using his full powers; it is likely that if Mikael had not been effected with werewolf venom at the time, and Klaus had uesd his full powers, he would most definitely overpower and defeat Mikael, without any difficulty.
Even before Klaus became an original vampire, later the original hybrid, he was a master swordsman, even though he rarely uses a sword, due to his supernatural powers, Klaus' swordsman skills have not diminish. In Every Mother's Son, it has been hinted that Klaus' swordsman skills are superior to Mikael's.
Klaus has shown to be an expert fighter even when unarmed; When Marcel's army took him on, despite being overwhelmed to begin with, he was able to fight them, almost evenly and overpower most of them, through his fighting skills and original hybrid powers. In that single fight, he killed roughly twenty four non-original vampires single-handedly, showing his skills as a combatant even further. Klaus is far less calm, composed, and strategic in battle than Elijah. Due to his long existence, Klaus has seen countless battles and is very experienced in battle.
His supernatural attributes aside, Klaus's greatest asset is his sharp intellect. His penchant for strategies and forming contingencies way ahead of time easily surpasses Elijah's, who is almost Klaus's Intellectual equal, as Klaus has outsmarted Elijah on more than one occasion, Klaus is able to discern a great deal of whatever or whoever presented to him after only a few keen observations, he was able to figure out that Hope would be sacrificed at the cemetery because it was where the Harvest and the Reaping took place as well as the location of the ancestral witches' burial place, he also came up with a plan, to make it look like he has turned against his maternal half-siblings and Hayley, after Elijah daggered him, and after Hayley tried to take his daughter Hope away from him, in order to gain Dahlia's trust to take her down, according to Dahlia, Klaus is the most intelligent of his maternal half-siblings.
Elijah is Klaus' maternal older half-brother. As humans, they were close, engaging in friendly sword fights, however their relationship became strained due to both falling for the the same woman, Tatia. After transitioning into vampires, along with their sister, Rebekah, they made a pact to always stick by each other "Always and Forever". In 1492, their close relationship crumbled upon the arrival of the doppelgänger Katerina Petrova. Klaus wanted to use her blood to break the Hybrid Curse, but after her escape, Klaus was furious and blamed his half-brother. Although Elijah promised he would find her, their relationship never recovered as in 2010, Elijah planned to help the Salvatores and Elena Gilbert kill Klaus. After Klaus broke the curse, at Elijah's mercy, he revealed that he didn't kill their family and that their bodies were safe. Elijah saved his half-brother's life, however was neutralized in return. Their bitter relationship continued after Elijah was un-daggered by Damon Salvatore. However, the half-brothers became allies after their mother returned and were unsure of her intentions regarding their family. In the Season Three finale, Elijah bargained for his half-brother's body back and was clearly devastated by his "death". Throughout the trials and tribulations which threatened to rip their brotherly bond, they have recently begun mending their relationship and even though Klaus refused to grant Katherine freedom by Elijah's request, Elijah has stated he won't give up on finding Klaus' redemption.
Unfortunately, Klaus' relationship with Elijah takes a turn for the worst when Elijah chose to believe Tyler's lies over him, that he is (supposedly) aware that his child's blood can make hybrids, and he plans to use his child's blood once she is born to make an army of hybrids, to take over New Orleans, Elijah falsely accused him of only caring about his unborn child, so he could use her to sire more hybrids, Klaus became hurt/enraged by the accusation, he violently bit Elijah in retaliation, their relationship became damaged after this. Klaus eventually forgave Elijah, when he apologized to Klaus for his accusation. Despite the fact that their relationship is now repaired, Klaus is barely on speaking terms with Elijah.
Unfortunately, their relationship becomes worse than ever, when Elijah daggered Klaus and allowed Hayley to try and take Hope away from him, in retaliation Klaus kills his half-brother's girlfriend Gia, and daggered Elijah with Papa Tunde's Blade, their relationship becomes estranged/broken after this, as they both want nothing to do with each other any more.
Rebekah is Klaus' maternal younger half-sister. Out of all his half-siblings, he is closest to her, and very protective of her. Klaus cares very deeply for Rebekah, but he seems to have a lot difficulty showing her that it is true. They are loyal to each other. Before she left New Orleans, thus separating, they had never left each other's side and stood by one another no matter what happened. After Klaus was "supposedly" killed by Alaric in The Departed, Rebekah was heartbroken over losing her older half-brother whom she loved and never left her. When she finds out in the Season Four premiere that he was still alive, their relationship started to completely and totally fall apart when he chose to save Caroline over his own half-sister. Rebekah confronted him about how she never stopped loving him through everything. It was always her that was there for him when Finn, Kol and Elijah weren't. She then realized that he truly doesn't love her when he told her they are no longer family, and disowned her. But later in the season, Klaus saves her when Kol nearly kills her with a White Oak Stake. Even when she hates him, Klaus shows that he still cares and loves her regardless of what has happened between them. After Klaus is again the King of New Orleans, she begins to form her own army and so to defeat Klaus and Marcel, since she tired of always being used by them. Nevertheless, Rebekah has tried to protect the daughter of Klaus at all costs. When discovering that it was Rebekah whom brought their father to New Orleans, he decided to get revenge and wanted answers. She admitted that she wanted him dead as he robbed her of love and happiness. Klaus decided to exile her, telling her to leave New Orleans and never come back. Klaus decided to entrust the safety of her daughter to Rebekah, she returned to New Orleans to take Hope with her and care for her.
Klaus and Hayley first interacted in The Rager, when Hayley first visited Tyler in Mystic Falls, being the one who helped him break his Sire Bond. Klaus initially believed her to be a fling of Tyler's whilst in the Appalachians, however it was revealed she came to Mystic Falls in a deliberate attempt to have Klaus murder his hybrids, in exchange for information on her family. She succeeds and disappears, only to come back in Bring It On, where Klaus saves her from a vampire sent by Katherine to kill her. Klaus takes her back to his house, after talking a lot Klaus received a call form Rebekah, he tells Hayley that the vampire lurking around to kill her is dead. Even though she had to go, Klaus offers her to stay. She agrees and they end up having sex. Klaus tells Hayley he knows something about her family after noticing a special birthmark on her shoulder. Hayley ends up in New Orleans where she finds out that she is pregnant with Klaus' child. Not keen to the idea at first, Klaus has shown to care about his child in more than one occasion, fearing that someone might try to take her away from him. The relationship between Klaus and the mother of his child has evolved along the series, both coming to a mutual understanding, while Klaus also shows that he cares about her. After her encounter with Klaus' step-father Mikael on the other side and nearly killed by him along with her baby, Hayley is shown by Klaus their child's nursery after Hayley decides to move back to the compound. Klaus and Hayley share a moment in which Klaus asks her what Mikael has told her about him, Hayley tells him "Nothing true", which shows that they now have a good relationship. Klaus and Hayley are friends and they work together in order to keep their child safe.
Unfortunately, Klaus' relationship with Hayley takes a turn for the worse, when Hayley tried to take Hope away from him, in which Klaus became hurt/enraged by this attempt, that he had Dahlia place the Crescent Curse on Hayley and her pack, as punishment for trying to take his daughter away from him.
Marcel is Klaus' best friend and former student. It's complicated, but they respect each other. There's definitely a history between them. It has been stated many times that Klaus loves Marcel like a son. Also, Marcel is very much in favor of embracing his true nature as a vampire and that’s something he learned from Klaus and something they certainly have in common. When Klaus returns to New Orleans after 100 years, he finds that Marcel has taken control of the city. Seeing that his former student has used everything he's taught him and achieved glory, Klaus wants what he has, forming a rivalry between the two. But Klaus still sees Marcel as his old friend. After Marcel attempted to bury Klaus, he surrendered New Orleans to him and despite their still unresolved differences, Klaus asked Marcel to rule side by side with him. After finding out that Marcel conspired with Rebekah to bring Mikael back in order to get Klaus to run from New Orleans and for him and Rebekah to be together, Marcel was banished from New Orleans. His relationship with Klaus is currently broken as Marcel lives in exile and tries to find a way to get New Orleans back under his rule. After he helped save Klaus's child from being sacrificed, Klaus gave him some blood to cure the werewolf bite and they returned to being allies once more.
Klaus and Camille's relationship together starts slowly. They first meet at Rousseau's, a bar in New Orleans. Later, they bond over a painter's artwork when Camille describes the artwork and the painter. Klaus is impressed by her and Camille is seen to bring out the humanity in Klaus. Klaus seems to have taken an interest in Camille. He first saw her when she was bartending, someone she later remembers as being the "$100 guy". However later on, after being given the news about his child, he was more interested in her when she was looking at an artist painting and she described the story she assumed of the artist. Her words about the man in the painting being "alone", caused him to show his humanity and seemingly change his mind towards the future of his unborn child. He later chose to withheld from her that his child lives, not wanting her to get further involved in the supernatural than she already is. She later found out that his daughter Hope Mikaelson, had survived and she watched over her for him for a short period of time. Camille is Klaus's go to girl when he needs support and she is more than willing to lend an ear and listen to his problems and help him deal with them. They both are shown to care very deeply for each other and have possible feelings for one another.
- Klaus is similar to Mikael as both are prideful, violent, ruthless, brutal, sadistic and cruel; the only difference is, that well Klaus has guilt and remorse for his actions, Mikael does not.
- Klaus does not deserve to be called pure evil as he is 50% of a sadistic person and 50% of a caring person.
- New Orleans brings out more of Klaus' humanity, while in Mystic Falls, he was still; albeit "50% evil" yet his weakness was Caroline Forbes.
- Elijah and Rebekah made a vow that they will remain with Klaus, always and forever; however, they have repeatedly broken this vow, for their own selfishness.
- Klaus has try to keep his family together, but this has failed numerous times, do to his maternal half-siblings' (Elijah and Rebekah) selfish, self-righteous and hypocritical natures, as well as their inability to acknowledge that they are responsible for there family being torn apart in the first place, which lead them to try and destroy him, which tore them apart even more.
- Klaus is the only one of his maternal half-siblings (Elijah and Rebekah) who never broke the Always and Forever vow, as his maternal half-siblings broke it, for their own selfishness, choosing love over there half-brother; as the vow was about Elijah and Rebekah standing by Klaus' side no matter what, not the other way around.
- His one night stand with Hayley was possibly the beginning to the Originals tv series.
- Joseph Morgan finds it hard that fans struggle to hate Klaus.
- Klaus never wants to be like Mikael, as he still has a hold over him.
- He is an interestingly complex protagonist.
- Klaus' current allies are Marcel, Camille, Rebekah, whom he is protective over.
- Klaus has made an enemy out of every person he has come across at least once.
- Klaus can be quite exploitive.
- Klaus, along with his family have all been antagonists in the Vampire Diaries, (the only difference is, that Klaus is more of an anti-hero) Elijah was the first one.
- Compulsion is Klaus' manipulative tactic, which is shown for most vampires in the TVD/TO Universe.
- Klaus is the main protagonist of the Originals.