Legacies: Kaleb & Cleo Are What Hope & Landon Should Be
Legacies: Kaleb & Cleo Are What Hope & Landon Should Be

Hope and Landon’s Legacies love story was defined by their different power levels, but Kaleb and Cleo proved the show’s couples can overcome this.

While Legacies never found the right balance for Hope and Landon’s relationship, the show is proving with Kaleb and Cleo that its stars can have a believable pairing on equal footing. Legacies heroine Hope Mikaelson has always been powerful. Even before Legacies season 4 made Hope an unstoppable, inhuman Tribrid villain, the show’s former heroine was always its strongest character and had a wide range of supernatural skill sets to draw from whenever the plot required them.

While this made Hope hard to kill, it also made her relationship with Landon Kirby a little hard for some to engage with. Initially, Hope being the one to rescue Landon (rather than vice versa) was a nice “dude in distress” subversion of viewer expectations. However, by Legacies season 4, Hope’s repeated insistence that Landon was perpetually in need of saving (and the hapless Landon’s inability to prove this wrong) proved pretty tiresome.

There was a pretty huge power imbalance between Hope and her frequently-revived Legacies love interest Landon, causing their relationship to earn the ire of some viewers. The ongoing issue between Hope and Landon was that she never trusted her love interest could take care of himself since he did not have her powers, resulting in her frequently swooping in to save the day. Legacies season 4 saw supporting star Kaleb initially attempt to follow the same plot with his witch love interest Cleo. However, Caleb quickly learned his lesson in “Was This the Monster You Saw”(season 4, episode 13), proving in the process that Legacies can have two characters with different powers share a relationship without one needing to save the other.

 

Legacies: Kaleb & Cleo Are What Hope & Landon Should Be
Legacies: Kaleb & Cleo Are What Hope & Landon Should Be

By the end of the episode, a humbled Kaleb acknowledged that Cleo was still strong and capable of handling things without her powers and didn’t require his protection. While Lizzie breaking Hope’s sire bond led the Tribrid to admit that her frenemy Lizzie was powerful, Hope never conceded the same for Landon during their relationship and her erstwhile love interest left with her little reason to do so. Thus, Kaleb admitting Cleo was his equal resulted in a more balanced back and forth and much more compelling dynamic than the one Hope and Landon had.

While Hope spent three seasons of Legacies treating Landon like he was helpless, Landon’s character development stalled since their story had nowhere to go if he wasn’t in peril. In contrast, Kaleb and Cleo are now well set up to continue supporting one another’s growth, since they view each other as equals. While there is no doubt that Legacies season 4 made mistakes, avoiding the over familiar dynamic of one romantic partner saving the other ad nauseam is one of the show’s better choices. Whether Hope and Landon will also gain a more balanced dynamic before Legacies season 4 ends, however, remains to be seen.

 

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