Just when you think this show has zero to do with actual history, we get an episode like this that’s all REAL HISTORY and BATTLES and can we not do this again, please? We don’t tune in to Reign for thoughtful analysis of religious power struggles. We tune in for the OUTFITS and the WTF-ery. Like, the political stuff is only interesting when it’s being done while stomping around in 5″ heels and dodging feral castle ghosts. Luckily, we still get our weekly dose of Queen Cathy’s shade, as well as some proto-feminist behaviour from Lord Pepperpot, and of course the Bash/Kenna Sexathon. Next week had better bring some a) weirder clothes and b) random murders, or else we’re going to have to rename this weekly feature.
WTF #5: Protestants are the New Darkness
It’s been fun watching people pretend the threat du jour were the sexy pagans in the woods, but we’re in for some history-adjacent plots as everyone remembers OH RIGHT, THE PROTESTANTS.
But at the episode’s start, Mary and the gals were unconcerned by a) Mary being totally locked in a tower last episode, or b) some dude with the habit of leaving his sharpened teeth in the backs of his forest sex slaves, or c) Protestants. Because? It’s never-ending winter! Snowball fight time!!
You know, capes are lovely to look at, but I’m super glad that coats are now a thing. Capes are so very drafty.
Particularly if your snowball fight attire of choice is a gauzy white and gold gown.
Back inside by the fire, Mary takes care of queenly things like… Protestants… something? I couldn’t relate, so I didn’t pay attention. Call it a perk of living in a modern era first-world country, where disputes between religions are limited to the time both St. Mary’s and Temple Beth Shalom tried to rent the last bouncy castle within 50 miles for their respective fun fairs.
Something tells me The Darkness the Protestants will not be appeased with a bouncy castle. Also, that is a LOT of paperwork on her desk. Can you imagine how annoying correspondence was in the pre-typewriter and file folder days?
So apparently the solution to the Protestant problem (something something Mary’s mother is under seige? And Mary’s Protestant cousin Liz is about to become Queen of England?) is to employ Mary’s shady uncle, The Silver Fox.
Is that chainmail around his neck, or knitwear? Knowing this show, I’m assuming it’s part of a cowl neck sweater, because that’s what Henry always wears, too.
Cathy is none too pleased, as Shady Uncle is persona non grata at French Court for basically being a dick. BTW, she looks very pretty all P.O’d in her whispy tiara and silver fox collar.
Still with the cloaks, though. At least with the fur trim, her shoulder/neck area won’t get too chilly?
Anyway, stuff happens, armies are hired, Francis promises to help Scotland but then is all “Nope! Gonna help France instead!” and Mary gets upset. I’m more upset about this crown of thorns look (Easter was LAST WEEK, honey), paired with beads and an elastic top.
And what’s with all the Mary-in-white this week? I thought we established that black is her power colour.
So the ladiez head to the Balcony of Contemplation to bid farewell to Francis, who’s off to Calais to something something Protestants. That snowball fight girlie fun was short-lived, no?
Sayanara, Francis! I’d be worried about you, except we know you won’t die until later, in bed, from a bleeding ear infection. At least, that’s what Nostro said.
Then again, his visions are 100% never accurate, so maybe we’ll worry a wee little bit.
WTF #4: The Emperor Has No Pants
Henry’s crazy. We all know this. We’ve seen him sex a lady out the window, sex a lady to death post-threesome, proposition the Scottish queen (who happens to be his daughter-in-law), and depose his wife for Penny the Bean Queen. Next in his bag of tricks? Making Zoolander eyes at his chess board.
OK, so it’s his war strategy toy soldier set, not a chessboard. Love the little flags on his mini toy soldier boat there. Maybe less attention to decorating his mininatures and more attention to his mental health would be best for France right now? Just a thought.
Oh, and also, he’s not wearing pants.
Someone’s taking inspo from the hemlines on this season of Mad Men!
This is now Francis and Cathy’s default facial expression whenever Henry’s around.
We’ve had no-shoes Henry, no-pants Henry…where will it end??
WTF #3: Cathy’s Court of Courtesans
So the erstwhile Bean Queen refuses to return to her life as a pot-scrubber, and thus demands to see Henry with the old schemer’s trick of “I’m totes pregz!”
Remember awhile ago we learned from Kenna that Henry keeps his goods locked down? Apparently he practices flawless family planning game even mid-psychotic break.
Whatever. Cathy and her velvet brocade number are NOT AMUSED by the Bean Queen’s shenanigans.
Especially when said shenanigans include bedding this random dude because she is (of course) not actually pregnant (see above re: Renaissance birth control).
Cathy, bless her, puts on her best “OH SO CONCERNED” face and, rather than calling out Penny’s weak schemes, pretends she, like, totally believes her.
Also she’s wearing a belt on top of her dress. This is a new development, fashionwise.
But after a quick locking-Penny-in-the-tower move (apparently inspired by Francis last week month), Penny comes clean. Rather than having her murdered, Cathy gives her an offer she can’t refuse. “So, I’ve got this slut squadron that sleeps with men to learn their secrets. Wanna join?”
(Sidebar: Baby’s got back in that dress. Twerk it, C!)
I’d be 100% willing to watch a Reign spinoff that’s all about Cathy’s elite slut squadron, led by Penny. Make it happen, The CW!
WTF #2: Lord Pepperpot, Feminist
Greer’s father shows up with her little sisters in tow, bringing the episode’s tally of hot older dudes up to 2.5 (Mary’s Uncle, Greer’s Dad, and Crazy Henry gets a 0.5 because…reasons).
How cute are the sisters and their wee handwarmers? **squishes their little cheekies**
This blond one is fully mini-Greer, bringing some Sally Draper side-eye to the proceedings. And because every father on this show is a tool, Greer’s is no exception in his furry shrug-vest.
Speaking of vests? Lord Pepperpot channels 1990s Ellen Degeneres with this sweet vest action:
I know you’re hoping that he paired this with baggy jeans and some Doc Martens, but alas, his bottom half was solidly Renaissance.
Docs or not, is it weird that he’s totally winning me over? Because he’s clearly one of the best dudes on the show at the moment, a fact not lost on Mz Greer, looking lovely in this Olympic ice skater-adjacent sheer glittery number.
But seriously, Pepperpot is not a bankrupt serial wife killer, has not knocked up her BFF, is not secretly still in love with her BFF, wears pants and shoes at all times, and doesn’t have post-orgasmic visions. Arranged marriage win!
Aww, and the sisters even have little Mini-Me headbands! I bet the one on the left, in her salmon blouse and maroon vest (what’s with all the vests this week?) is jealous of the other girl’s legit Renaissance Princess gown.
But the important thing here is that Pepperpot is SUCH A GREAT DUDE! He turns down Greer’s dowry, offers to fund dowries for her sisters, and basically gives Greer power of attorney over her own life. He’s like a Renaissance man suffragette, and Greer is kinda falling for him.
Like, his forward-thinking feminist actions would be noteworthy even if he were in the 1930s time period that Greer is clearly dressed for, what with her art deco jewellery and Katharine Hepburn silhouette.
And then? NOM.
This, of course, means that Lord Castleroy is going to die soon. Because if we know one thing, it’s that anyone this good and perfect cannot survive on this show. #RIPAylee
WTF #1: I Wanna Sex You Up
So…Kenna and Bash had sex this week. Like, a lot.
This is literally the only thing either of them did. Ok, Kenna did make an appearance on the Contemplating Balcony mentioned earlier, but she was kind of half-assing it off to the side, busy thinking about her next shoot for the Victoria’s Secret lookbook.
So. Many. Corsets.
But Kenna having sex all over the place isn’t a WTF for this show, really, is it? She’s gotten hers like every other week thus far. What brings this plotline into WTF territory is the amazingly positive approach it has to sex, female sexuality and communication in the bedroom.
Seriously. Has any other teen soap had a convo like this one where Bash is like, “Tell me specifically what you want me to do so I can please you,” and made it super-hot? Glamourizing female sexual pleasure and open communication between partners? How is this show — THIS CRAZYPANTS SHOW — suddenly bringing the healthiest approach to sexuality of anything on TV?
But also, it seems like Kenna and Bash are going to enjoy this marriage more than either anticipated. You go, teen newlyweds.