OK, hoist up your 16th-century-appropes knee-high stockings and tighten your corsets: this was one hell of a plot-filled episode, yet again offering at least a bit of plotline for every character, even those we’d kindasorta forgotten were still on the show (**waves to Gideon**). Ears were pierced! Rocks were carried! Drinks were drank! And, best of all, Cathy strode through Scotland like Gordon Ramsey on Kitchen Nightmares, basically pointing out and then solving everyone’s problems. So let’s jump in, shall we?
WTF #5: Fifty Shades of Grey Protestant Morals
OK real talk: when this scene started up I had less than zero idea who these two were. Straight up, I was like, “Is that Greer? But Greer’s hair isn’t curly? Who’s that guy? Who are any of these people? Why are they doing this on a furry rug on the floor? Doesn’t anyone on this show know about beds? Always sexing in open windows and standing up in hallways.”
Then I saw her eyebrows and heard her moan, “I LOVE YOU, JAMES, WHO IS ALSO MARY’S HALF-BROTHER!” and I was like, oh right, those two.
So, James is still on his Mary-mandated mission to seduce Foxy Knoxy in order to get the goods on her husband, Gross John Knox (GJK). And she’s fallen for him, but he’s just lying back and thinking of England Mary Scotland. The minute she leaves the room, he’s all over GJK’s day planner like bodily fluids are on that furry rug.
But James’s intel helps vis-a-vis Mary’s ongoing battles with The Vatican (or one of her other enemies; a lot happened this week, I may have forgotten exact details). But more importantly: James is busted which means Foxy is busted which means GJK is not having it. He straight up brings her to another woman’s public shaming, is like, “Girl, I love you, so I won’t strip you naked and flog you in public, I’ll just steal your clothes and abandon you naked here on your own. Peace.”
Hope the D was worth it, girl.
WTF #4: Nobody puts Pirate Baby in a corner
We’re grateful at how the Reign writers always include some bit of comedy in every episode to lighten things up from the persistent litany of death/murder/betrayal/backstabbing/abandoning-women-naked-in-public.
Which is why it was so great for the return of last season’s guest star, Martine The Sassy Pirate, aka, Greer’s babydaddy. He’s like, “Greer, what’s up? Are you still pregnant with my baby or what?”
And Greer’s like, “Um it’s been eighteen months since I saw you, like I get you’re a pirate, but are you unfamiliar with the gestation period of human babies?”
And Martin’s like, “I want to see my Half Pirate Baby, Rose!” and Greer is like, “How do you feel about babysitting while I attend my BFF’s extremely sad wedding? I left chips in the cupboard and feel free to watch TV but under no circumstances should you pierce her ears.”
She comes back to find…
Sidenote: I mean. This is the most amazing babysitter ever, from the leather pants to the leather vest to the seventeen tonnes of necklaces and rings to the amazing skill with piercing baby ears?? I mean.
Greer is like, “Fancy ladies do not have pierced ears. Please disregard the series of pierced earrings modelled by myself, Mary, Catherine, and Elizabeth throughout the episode. My lobes are bare now which is all that matters.”
And Martin is like, “Um, our daughter looks amazing with earrings, I somehow managed to pierce them without any blood, you look amazing in that green and gold lace dress/choker combo, and also I left you a small fortune in jewels. Peace out.”
This was all flat out fantastic, from everyone’s acceptance of “Pirate” as an ethnic/cultural group, of Martin’s sweet fatherly instincts, of how Rose is “Half Pirate”: all of it. This show is getting very grim very soon so let’s enjoy our pirate baby ear piercing storylines while we can.
Because even this is not immune from some gloom, as Foxy (who got clothes from somewhere and snuck into the castle… somehow?) shows up just in time to see Greer letting James down easy. Basically, what she sees but doesn’t hear, is him being like, “Date me Greer, you’re the raddest lady in town who is not also my sister!” and Greer’s like, “Kinda busy with my Half Pirate Baby, but thanks for the interest.” But all Foxy sees is them gently caressing faces so like… she’s taken over from Keira vis-a-vis bunny boiling, so there’s that now to look forward to.
WTF #3: Queer Eye for the Queen’s Guy
UGH, FINALLY MARY GETS A GBF. She has been needing more friends in her squad who are not trying to sleep with her, and Greer’s busy with Pirate Shenanigans. Thank goodness David Rizzio is here to play Kevin Keller to Mary’s Veronica.
Like, for real. If Mary had had a sassy gay friend back in season one, how much better would everything have been? David Rizzio, where have you been all this woman’s life??? With your amazing hair, fun-loving attitude, and wonderful personality??? As if we couldn’t love him more, he basically dies and is reincarnated fangirling out when he meets Cathy. Which is: appropriate.
It’s Mary’s bachelorette (…ish) and they’re in Scotland, which means time for a very strange party game! Mary sells it as best she can, considering Darnley’s AWOL and this is the last thing she needs to be thinking about.
David is always here for a good time, so he lives it up, knocking back some champers while he scampers around playing with the cake… ribbon… thingie. As if we couldn’t love him more.
Anyway, so then Dave accidentally overheads Cathy and Mary scheming, and he’s like, “I mean, if you need someone to spy on Random Catholic Dude? I’m basically sleeping with his male secretary so like: done and done.”
Just in case you couldn’t love Dave enough, he’s momentarily distracted from dishing on his spy mission when he catches sight of Mary’s TDF wedding gown. I mean: priorities on point. Who can focus on religious wars and pending rebellions when there is GOLD LACE OVERLAY IN THE SAME ROOM?? Like, sincerely: Dave gets it.
You know Cathy wants to bring him back to France with her, but is big hearted enough to know Mary needs him more right now. And honestly, thank goodness, because Scotland is thirsty for someone with Dave’s joie de vivre. I’m getting season one Revenge Emily/Nolan flashbacks in the best possible way rn. Stay forever, Dave.
WTF #2: The laws of screenwriting demand that two unassigned characters of opposite genders are required to get together
Meanwhile in England, Liz is having not the greatest of days, because of a) Mary actually marrying Darnley (which: MORE LATER) and b) Cathy paying off border towns to switch their allegiance from Liz to Mary which means c) it’s like Mary 3 Liz 0.
Girl is LIV.ID.
But who’s around for her to scream at? Who’s left in all of England to be her bestie?
Gideon’s gone from being Liz’s spy to Mary’s ride-or-die to a double-agent for Mary to Liz’s bestie to the father of a dying girl (briefly) and now… unclear. When Liz is like, “Mary has all the border towns! Who do I have? WHO???” he’s like, “YOU HAVE ME!” and she’s like, “That won’t help me win a war but it can help me work out my rage rn” and so she throws herself at him, literally.
These two are Protestants, so you know they get it done right there on the floor. Can’t wait until they invent beds in like 100 years or whatever.
I mean. I don’t not ship it? But also like… Liz, wyd? Do we need to send Dave over to England for a get-a-grip conversation here? Because if anybody needs a GBF more than Mary right now, it may just be this gal.
WTF #1: Even Cathy can’t untangle the mess Mary’s gotten herself into
OK, like we just…
Ugh. This wedding was so sad you guys we were putting off talking about it as long as possible. But it includes the episode’s biggest WTF so **deep breaths** here we go.
So! It all starts off great, with Cathy visiting Scotland and revealing a plan to pay off all the Catholic royals so nobody’s mad when Mary calls off her wedding to Darnley, which is her plan at this point. The two Queens strut down the Scottish street and the peasants are like passing out they’re so in awe of the sheer power of #MATHERINE.
Mary’s like, “Great plan, can you just hang on while I double check one menstrual-related possible snafu?”
Oh also, Darnley is carrying a rock up the street because: Scotland. On a lesser episode, this would be a WTF of its own, but we’ve got bigger fish to fry. Still… I mean, WTF?
Turns out the menstrual-related issue is that Mary is TOTES PREGZ WITH DARNLEY’S BABY/HEIR. So even Cathy is like, “Oh, girl, you have to marry him now.”
But then PLOT TWIST! And again, this would be a WTF any other week, but this week is just yet another twist in the road. Remember Bothwell? He’s been thinking about their Harlequin Romance Road Trip along with the fact he’s known her for a hot minute, and has decided that Bash-via-Dave’s prophecy about love vs heir means she should get with him, i.e. Bothwell.
Mary is pregz, engaged, and on the brink of a civil war but is not dead and so of course she takes his lips for a test run.
But then she’s like, “I’m only gonna break break your break break your heart,” and runs off to marry Darnley because: totes pregz.
Ugh, but first? Darnley scoots off to try and learn to scheme by bargaining with The Vatican but he’s so out of his depth it is laughable. Mary (with an assist from Cathy) marches right into the meeting and pulls rank.
Her groom-to-be pulls a classic Darnley, incoherently drunk the morning of the wedding, but with some help from Dave, Mary throws him into his formal pantaloons and forces him to the church on time.
What follow is THE SADDEST WEDDING EVER. Like, I feel like this event is sadder than many funerals. Mary’s eyes are just glazed over and dead inside, while Darnley is… I mean, he’s Darnley so just: the worst. Mary’s dress is amazing, like, Dave was definitely correct to swoon at its sight. Maybe even our fav Reign wedding gown to date? But it’s hard to appreciate it when it’s all so… I mean…
But victory!! She finally did it, married the one man who can maybe help her defeat Liz and win over England. Just too bad it had to be this guy.
But the wedding night isn’t so bad, particularly because Mary’s already pregz with his baby so she potentially never has to sleep with him again. Which means: slumber party with Cathy!!! Best wedding night ever, I mean that sincerely, just two ladies in amazing eveningwear getting cozy drunk on what I’m sure is some quality Scottish whisky and French wine. You know Dave is elsewhere in the castle FOMO.
Cathy, whose hair is spectacular this week BTW, gives her protegee some real talk. Namely: she knows Mary can’t not be in love all the time, and if it can’t be with Darnley, she should be careful about who she takes as a lover. Even Cathy is like, “Lady, I know you can’t keep it in your pants and a husband and pregnancy won’t stop you. So at least wrap it up, mmkay?”
And Mary’s like, “Got it. Take the worst possible man as a lover and don’t bother to hide it from anyone. Got it.” And before Cathy can be like, “Girl, no, wait!” Mary rushes off to her marital suite. Darnley’s just being Darnley — i.e., passed out drunk on top of the duvet. So she slips past him in her amazing medieval-esque nightie that makes her look like Guinevere out here…
Guess who’s lurking below her balcony like a total creeper? One guess, and it rhymes with Dothwell, has two very chiselled dimples and the physique of Gaston:
Like, I get that it’s a sham marriage of convenience but it may be a cool idea to not take a lover until well after you’ve given birth to the heir to the kingdom? And even then, choosing a dude who your brother hates and who has no real allies in Scotland is not the best of ideas. Then again… those dimples, though…