Oh my. Well, this third season premiere certainly cements this show’s reputation for bonkers, overstuffed, nonsensical storytelling. There were about six plotlines, each of which felt like its own TV show. We have Frary 2.0, the story of a dim royal couple rekindling their teen marriage post-affair; Greer the Happy Madam and her new pirate lover; Lola and Narcisse performing yet another revival of Dangerous Liaisons; Bash keeping dancing on the razor’s edge between “history” and the paranormal; the sudden arrival of Dawn Summers Prince Charles; oh and there’s a whole new show thrown in here too, featuring Queen Liz I and her new bestie, Cathy. Also: literal tigers. Is it any wonder there wasn’t room to fit Kenna and her new maybe boytoy, Conde’s brother? I guess that’ll be next week.
WTF #5: Oh, these characters have totally been here this whole time
The prominent placement of Rachel Skarsten in the opening credits seems to mean Liz I is here to stay. Rather than using Cathy as an audience surrogate to learn who any of these people are, instead they go the Dawn Summers route by acting like we’ve met any of these people ever before.
So, meet Liz! Her hobbies include ruling a country and wearing gigantic ruffs.
In ten seconds, we get the sense she’s a zillion times better as Queen than Mary could ever be. Also snaps to the wardrobe dept. for immediately showing that English fashion is different from Franch fashion, in that, her outfits are like 90% hostorically accurate.
And you know she’s serious about going full Game of Thrones on the rest of Europe, because she’s got Cathy on speed dial.
Cathy hasn’t yet assimilated to the actual Renaissance style of England, as she brings her usual Dowager High School Teacher at Prom That Is Also A Funeral look to proceedings.
Even those who aren’t as obsessed with British history as me may be familiar with Liz’s reputation as The Virgin Queen. It’s sort of the main thing she’s known for. But never fear! Reign rids her of that pesky hymen about midway through, thanks to one Mr. Robert Dudley:
I can’t yet tell him apart from all the other white guys on this show, but luckily he’s the only dude (other than Narcisse) with a beard so we can tell when it’s him. Also, Liz gives him total heart-eyes whenever he’s around.
Oh, but plot twist! Robert’s totes married to this lady, who you can tell is not that great because she can’t even be bothered to curl her ends:
Honey, you need to bring more than puff sleeves and stringy hair if you’re ever going to compete with alllll of this:
And settle a bet for me: are her earrings spiders? Because I think they just might be:
ANYWAY, so Robert’s wife gets her own plotline because this show is now full-on Game of Thrones I guess. Her plan is to win her husband back by learning secret sex tricks from some rando:
Step one is to actually remove your clothes, but hopefully he’ll teach her all that in due course. Also? Pretty sure she borrowed that sheer boho gown from Kenna.
Sadly, the shots of two badass ginger queens scheming together are shot-lived as Cathy winds up back in France, in a cage with a tiger.
Yeah, I’ll get to that in a bit.
WTF #4: Bash’s GF is totally not a witch you guys, that was just a misunderstanding
Whyyyy is Bash still caught in these Renaissance Winchester Bros plotlines? Honestly, if this season they’d pretended Delphine was never a thing, I promise nobody would mind. Not even the family and friends of the woman who plays Delphine.
Hey, gurl. Welcome to season three.
So, last season, she ran off from her execution by fire which seemed like magic. But it turns out she was covered in oil-free moisturizer, nbd.
Bash is still pretty so I’m glad he’s on the show, but like… this plot? Still? Again? Really?
Anyway, something happens now where whenever Delphine is near, or in trouble, or something (?) Bash’s arm glows. Sort of like the tattoos Death Eaters got in Harry Potter. Also, all of the birds are now dead:
Honestly, bring back Kenna because I cannot with this shizz.
WTF #3: Pirates of the French Caribbean
Leith is finally no longer around, moping that Greer took a Kelly Martin “I choose me” approach to that relaysh. And Greer’s fine as a single working sort-of-still-married-to-a-heretic lady, until she sets her sights on this hot piece of guyliner:
Basically, he wants to wed Greer; Mary wants access to his ships; Greer agrees to basically play him; he plays her; he runs off, Greer makes a face like this:
Oh girl, he was just not that into you. That said, the high-class madam look still works like hell on her. You do you, G.
WTF #2: Slow death by earache
So, Frary start the episode off with their second honeymoon, which involves a lot of canoodling in the fields…
…and tender caresses in candle-filled rooms.
Remember on their wedding night, when they hooked up in this exact room but with like 45 people watching, including Bash, back when he had the hots for Mary? Remember when Bash was into Mary? So long ago.
So anyway, Francis eventually comes clean that Nostro said he’s going to due of earache sometime this season. Mary and her tutu are SO SAD YOU GUYS.
After a ride on the sad boat of sadness, they both put on their best black pre-funeral outfits and scowl at the injustices of life. **shakes fist at the cruel hand of fate**
And in case you’re wondering, the showrunners have officially announced that Francis is going to totes die this season. So it’s going to be like 22 episodes of “is he going to die this week? Wait no. Is he going to die this week? No…” like the opposite of suspense.
But don’t worry! Just like Mini Coop arrived shortly before Marissa left The O.C., this week we meet Cousin Rose Princess Claude Prince Charles.
Is he going to be more of a Joffrey type or a Tommen type? Remains to be seen.
What I do know is that he has a ways to go before he can pop dat ass like Francis doing archery:
WTF #1: TIE: France’s Next Top Tiger Model AND Accidental Sex Castration
Yeah, there were tigers. Pirate tigers. According to the chyron that appeared on the screen during this gal’s entrance, our Next Top Tiger Model:
WERK IT. That walk could only have been learned under the tutelage of Miss J. I mean, look at that strut.
This screencap is of the whole cast as they react to the green screen the entry of FNTM:
Mary’s dubious and miffed that her Greco-Roman cape ensemble has been upstaged. Francis, who hasn’t seen the tiger yet, is about to be pissed he’s only got the second-largest amount of fur in the room. Lola, the smart one, is the only person to realize that bringing a TIGER into the THRONE ROOM is BONKERS.
So you’d think that’s hands-down the #1 WTF of the week, unttil Queen Cathy’s body double accidentally castrate-murdered her piece when they went to hook up in a FUNCTIONING SAWMILL.
This was the craziest sex death on this show since the instant classic type King Henry sexed that lady out of the upstairs window in season one.
But then again, ANTigerM showing up again as Cathy’s new roommate was also pretty much instant classic:
She’s giving amazing face here. A bit more commercial than editorial, though.
Looks like we’re in for yet another season of non-stop crazytimes and I, for one, CANNOT WAIT.
Also? We’re hiring new writers! If you’re into fashion, hilarity, and Reign, what are you waiting for? Apply!!