Reign – S01E05 – A Chill in the Air
Fair warning, this episode might as well be titled, “OH NO SHE DIDN’T!”
There’s a horse and carriage carrying two ladies; one is sleeping and the other is knitting. A boy runs out of the woods to tell the driver that the road ahead is flooded, and encourages him to cut through the woods. After they drive off, the boy clutches an antler shaped necklace, which matches the scar hidden underneath it. Seems totally normal, so you probably will be surprised to hear that the wagon hits a hole, there’s druidic chanting outside, and everyone but the blond that was sleeping is killed. She runs off into the woods.
Francis has come to woo Mary with talk of borders. When that doesn’t sway her, they share their feelings in what-ifs that somehow manages to earn him a kiss. He also hypothetically invites her to the Harvest Festival. Meanwhile, blond girl is still running through the forest. There are crows or ravens or some other kind of black bird I can never properly identify. Creepy McDarkbirds, as Beth as dubbed them.
Mary and her ladies are learning about a tradition where you write your regrets on a piece of paper, which is tied to a little toy boat. You get to let your regrets sail away, both figuratively and literally. Probably much more literally though, I can’t imagine that kind of thing lasting the next time you’re sobbing in your ale.
Bash comes up to comment on the rarity of Mary being happy, saying that, “to see you smile is to feel the sun.” He says it with a smirk and a flippant air and is holding a tankard of ale, so it’s not surprising that she doesn’t take him seriously. “Do you flirt with everyone?” Yes. Yes he does. Including Lola, whose name he lingered over when greeting each of the ladies (which still makes me snicker to myself because in my head I just hear, “Mary. Mary. Mary. Mary. Mary.”) Lola tries to warn Mary that Bash has feelings for her, which she brushes off even though he left quickly after she mentioned Francis. “Well, I hope to get sauced at your wedding.”
Her warnings are interrupted by Horse Hair and Kenna whispering. They’ve noticed Lord Castleroy, a Hapsburg who has gotten rich in the spice trade, staring at Greer. She decides this would be a great match for her and her family, and takes it upon herself to go talk to him. No formal introductions or anything! Maybe they happened already.
Oh look, that blond chick is still running through the forest.
Not only did Lord Castleroy make his fortune in the spice trade, but he’s disturbingly infatuated with pepper. After he mentions having seen the plant in India, Greer is excited that the conversation might be steered in more interesting directions. Alas, no, Lord Peppercorn still has pepper trivia to impart. She notices Kitchen Boy staring at her and bumps into Lord Peppercorn, spilling his drink on her dress. Oh darn, now she has to leave. Now she’ll never know the details of how you could pay your rent in pepper.
Greer is frustrated that she actually ruined her dress, and also a bit peeved at Kitchen Boy for staring at her in public. She’s still very concerned about ruining her reputation and her chances for marrying up, despite the make out session with Kitchen Boy previously. He offers to try to get the stain out of her dress using an old kitchen trick, but really it’s just an excuse to get her to take it off. This boy has moves! Also, Greer’s undergarments looks a lot like a modern wedding dress. Super fancy.
Francis has made one of these regret boats for Mary, christening it The Just Mary. I’m not sure it’s a good sign that they already need a regret boat for their relationship. They’re interrupted by a guard coming to tell Francis that forest girl has been found and is asking for him. “Olivia?”
Oh shit you guys, he knows her name. And he’s hugging her. AND RUBBING HER HAIR! Sorry Mary… Bash is there to clarify. This is Olivia D’Amencourt, who left court shortly before Mary arrived. “Brokenhearted?” Mary asks. “Yes. He was.” Oh girl. Your boat isn’t going to float after you tie all your regrets to it.
Olivia (said forevermore with a sneer; Olivia) is lounging in what looks like the barn wing of the castle, covered in furs. Francis just waltzes in, not even caring that she’s in her nightgown. This doesn’t bode well if you were hoping his broken heart had been innocent. Strangely enough, as she tells her story to Francis we get our first taste of a French accent. The actress is actually French; sort of makes you wonder why they didn’t try harder with the rest of the “French” cast. She remembers that the bandits were speaking a “gibberish language” and tells Francis what little she remembers. He asks why she is there, since she was supposed to have left to marry another and never return. It turns out the marriage fell through because it became known that she had been intimate with Francis. (WARNING KENNA!) So now she has nowhere else to go.
Mary and Francis are talking about why Olivia left. He mentioned the marriage offer, but also that his mother made her life miserable. Turns out they were caught snogging in the boathouse, and Catherine was not amused. Mary takes this news with grace, though she does get a dig in about how Olivia should have known better considering Francis was engaged from childhood. Francis promises that his past with Olivia is just that, and that he plans to help her find a new marriage so everyone can get on with their lives.
The ladies are all lounging on what looks like a giant bed in the throne room. Greer is complaining about Lord Peppercorn and his constant pepper chatter. Horse Hair is annoyed because no one is listening to her read Virgil in Latin. Sorry Horse Hair, nobody likes you or your recitation of Virgil. This scene is kind of nice, because you see all the various court ladies sitting around playing dice and cards and all the other random things people did to pass the time when they didn’t have to bother with things like laundry and growing their own food. Just then, Olivia comes in and the queen gets up and leaves. SCANDAL! She dislikes Olivia more than Mary! This sets off an argument between Kenna and Greer about whether Olivia even belongs at court after her bad judgement of sleeping with a dude before wedlock. Kenna is quick to defend her, for obvious reasons. But then she calls out Greer! OH NO SHE DIDN’T! Greer is super awesome and I don’t care if she has a title, stop being a jerk Kenna no one cares that you’re sleeping with the king.
Mary breaks up their bickering and attempts to befriend Olivia, because she has more class than I do. She offers to lend her a dress for the festival since Olivia‘s things are still missing in the woods.
Bash is out riding when Francis waddles up to complain about him spilling the beans on his super secret (but everyone knows) love life. And also to complain about the pagans in the forest, like Bash is some kind of keeper for them.
Horse Hair is walking down my favorite hallway, when she trips and drops a ring that bounces across the floor towards Catherine. The queen picks it up and immediately wonders why Horse Hair has this ring that belongs to Mary. It turns out that Horse Hair is a kleptomaniac! “You’re a troubled, jealous little girl. Aren’t you?” Ugh, yes! I knew I didn’t like you. The penalty for stealing is losing a hand; even if Mary did that, we can assume her hair wouldn’t suffer noticeably. The queen confiscates the ring while she decides how to use this to her favor.
Bash is out in the Blood Wood with some guards, looking for the other two people from Olivia‘s wagon. They’re hanging upside down, their blood draining into a bowl. Turns out one of them is still breathing, which probably means these were live sacrifices. Joy! Bash decides to save the dude, much to the dismay of one of the guards who is afraid of the pagans taking revenge.
Mary and Olivia are picking out her dress for the festival, and Olivia makes note of how kind Mary is. Mary is doing her best to be cool about how free men can be with their sexuality. Olivia, on the other hand, has decided to play her bitch card. “You know much less about Francis’s desires than I do.” OH NO SHE DIDN’T! “Perhaps, now that I’m here, offering myself as an option, he’ll choose to be with me. Once again.” Wow dude. Mary, you have my full permission to slap her. I mean, that’s just rude, you’re in the process of loaning her a dress!
Nostradamus is berating Bash for interrupting the pagan sacrifice. He mentions that he had no sense of them being near, what’s that about? Does he have some kind of pagan spidey sense? Bash thinks the human sacrifices are a new thing, but Nostradamus says they’ve always happened; they’re just more bold about it now. It seems they’ve shifted from murdering people to keep others out of the woods they claim for themselves to luring people into the woods. We don’t know why they’ve changed, but Nostradamus is sure that they’ll be angry with Bash for interrupting and that his life is in danger. It’s probably safe to assume he’ll survive, otherwise who would round out Mary’s love triangle?
Olivia, UGH, is walking through the kitchens, looking for the wine cellar. The pagan from the road is working in the kitchens! Are you seriously telling me no one notices that this dude disappears into the Blood Wood, comes out covered in sacrificial blood, and NOBODY NOTICES? Seriously, all the guards, FIRED. Olivia recognizes his voice, but hasn’t placed why yet. The road dude asks Kitchen Boy who she is, because apparently they’re the only two people ever working down there who can speak. It would seem the pagans can’t count, because he didn’t realize someone had escaped their luring.
Mary and Francis are talking in front of a fire, which has me lamenting that my fireplace has never been properly inspected. One should definitely have a fire going when it’s snowing outside, right? Stupid carbon monoxide… Mary has found a noble lady in Paris, a Viscountess Whosawhatsits. She’s over stepping a bit, since it isn’t her court or her guest, but Francis seems to realize he’s on thin ice here and goes with it. Later Olivia! I won’t miss you one bit.
Horse Hair is watching Catherine play with a bird while she waxes on about brokenhearted she was when she had to send Mary away to the convent after an attempt was made on her life. Cry me a river. She claims this is why she keeps her distance now, because she associates her with loss. And now, boo hoo, Mary isn’t honest with her about her happiness in France, and how ever can she help her if she doesn’t know? Oh wait! Horse Hair can bring Catherine Mary’s letters to her mother, and then everyone is happy! How convenient that the idea just happened upon her, now that task can be Horse Hair’s “punishment”. She looks properly horrified at least. Also, her hair looks like that bird has been making a nest in it.
Olivia has come to Francis’s quarters, sneaking in wine; presumably from that wine cellar she was searching for. I guess she plans to get him drunk and hope for a repeat in the boathouse. Instead, Francis breaks the news that he’s sending her away. Take that!
Kitchen Boy is returning Greer’s dress, which he couldn’t clean, and is joking about getting her out of her dress. She’s very upset about his flippant attitude regarding her reputation and ability to marry. He basically tells her he’s cool with her marrying another dude, he just wants to love her. But, THE SHAME! She actually covers her mouth she says it. Greer, I actually like you, don’t bad act me out of it! Kitchen Boy gets it, and says he’ll leaver her alone.
Olivia is still baring her soul to Francis. Oh the torture, she says. And I have to agree, I’m feeling pretty tortured. Francis is sticking with Mary, so Olivia decides to step up her game and offers herself up as a formal mistress. OH NO SHE DIDN’T! And then she kisses him! Francis pulls away, but not before he spent a second looking like he enjoyed it. “You want me! And I want you. And I’m telling you, you can have me. Any way you want.” Wow.
Kenna runs up to Mary about how Olivia is now moving into the castle. What the crap Francis! Mary actually snaps at Kenna that her informant must be wrong. Kenna agrees to ask around some more to be sure, “discreetly”, which apparently means in full view of everyone just 10 feet away and using large pointing gestures. Catherine sidles up to Mary making vague snide comments about Kenna’s new necklace and how it’s blatantly disrespectful. It was actually given to Catherine as a first anniversary present, and now Mary knows that Kenna is sleeping with the king. Catherine takes this opportunity to go on about her own terrible love life, and how the king discards his lovers and then feels responsible for them afterwards; how he loved Diane before marrying Catherine. She’s attempting to sound like she’s just sharing her sad story and considering Kenna (who she says won’t last), but all of this is said as a direct parallel to Mary and Olivia. Mary looks ill and is seems to have decided to drown her sorrows.
Also, that sacrifice guy died, but spouted some stuff about a beast in the forest that lives in a cave and demands blood or kills the pagans to get it. Wasn’t he the carriage driver? Why does he even know this? Were the pagans being bad villains and reciting their grand plan before killing their victim again? I think Bash is trying to look startled, but he always looks like that. He’s kind of a goon. A different hair cut would probably help. It looks like it was done with a Flowbee.
Kenna has super secretly checked with the servants, and Olivia is definitely staying. Mary is still drowning her sorrows and gets snippy with Kenna about her sleeping with the king. She brings up a good point about making Catherine an enemy being a bad idea even if the king has promised his protection. Kenna gets super defensive, because it’s true lurve <3 <3. When Mary orders her to break it off, Kenna decides that she’s no longer Mary’s subject. OH NO SHE DIDN’T! Whose giant bed is she going to lounge in now while not listening to Virgil? Mary is really getting the shaft this episode. Though Catherine’s first anniversary present is actually costume jewelry, so she hasn’t faired too great either
And here comes good ol’ Francis, dumping more crap. How many times has he said “I was going to tell you” this episode? Too many! The Viscountess no longer wants Olivia, so she’s staying for now. How convenient. Mary gets some kind of super power when she drinks, and asks if something has happened between him and Olivia. He takes a moment to answer, and I swear to god the background music makes a horror movie noise, the kind you hear when someone is about to be stabbed. Francis looks afraid. I’d be afraid if this were my soundtrack too. They actually get into a fight, because Mary demands that Olivia leave after learning something almost happened (he doesn’t tell her what that something is, which probably isn’t helping). Francis decides to put his foot down, and then Mary basically accuses him of being his father. Which is when Francis decides to drop that little bomb that Olivia could be his mistress. Mary storms out with her booze…
…into Bash’s company, who is also drowning his sorrows. Mary confiscates said booze, which she can do, because she’s a pretty lady. Getting free booze is like some kind of consolation prize girls get for monthly torture and squeezing out humans. So now Mary is drunk and spewing regrets, and Francis is looking for her to apologize. She’s rightly upset about the inequality in their relationship, and Bash tells her that Francis is dumb for looking anywhere else. So she kisses him. OH NO SHE DIDN’T! “I shouldn’t have done that.” “You’re right, I should have.” And so he kisses her! And of course Francis is watching, because that’s how you write a love triangle! Is he supposed to be mad when he turns away? Maybe it’s the slightness of his shoulders, but Francis can’t seem to pull off any emotion that might require a bit of testosterone. He’s just going to slip away there
and dig out his old Cure CDs… no big deal. So emo.
Mary hears the horns announcing the launching of the regret boats. Seriously, her boat is going to sink. I don’t think they make enough paper for her to even write them out. She tries to apologize to Francis as they make a display of writing on their little slips, but he brushes her off. Meanwhile, Catherine thanks Horse Hair for delivering Mary’s letters, and decides to make it the deal permanent. Mary and Francis launch their boats, which miraculously don’t sink but do turn off in different directions despite a complete lack of current in the water, and he immediately leaves to find Olivia. Who is wearing that freaking blue dress from Mary. Seriously! Mary looks sad and brokenhearted, and I actually feel for her. And behold, her ship did not alleviate her regrets.
Greer takes this lesson in living with regret to heart, and decides not to have any herself. So she finds Kitchen Boy and tells him it’s on! Whoo! Secret love! So far I don’t want to barf, hooray! There’s a first for everything.
Catherine is having her face painted with what looks like honey. I guess this is some kind of medieval wrinkle remover? She’s talking to someone off screen. And it’s Olivia! Catherine summoned her here to break up Mary and Francis. OH NO SHE DIDN’T! It turns out everything Olivia is doing is at Catherine’s command, though apparently she does actually have feelings for Francis. Catherine is threatening to ruin her family if she doesn’t go along. And she doesn’t just plan to have Olivia break up Mary and Francis, but intends Olivia to get pregnant, have her wed Francis, and become the next queen of France. She may dislike Olivia, but she feels she can control her. Olivia, who I almost felt sorry for for a second, looks excited about this plan. So, we’re still sneering when we say her name.
Horse Hair and Mary are sitting in front of a lovely window together. “I’m in. The queen wants me to continue to give her your letters.” Oh shit! Horse Hair isn’t the bad guy here, she set up the queen for Mary. Color me surprised. I still don’t have to like your stupid hair. Mary suspects Catherine brought Olivia to court. Guess that plan wasn’t as secret as she thought.
The road pagan is sitting on a ledge, and I think we’re supposed to assume there’s a bit of a drop to one side. Bash is coming home from being somewhere outside and is banging his boots together to get the mud off. The road pagan is accusing Bash of taking something that wasn’t his, twice. Now he owes a debt, and has to choose a replacement sacrifice, or they’ll choose for him. He calls him Sebastian, and Bash is standing there with his sword, looking scared, asking how he knows his name. Dude, you are the son of a king, of course all the peons in the castle know your name. Don’t be daft. Then the road pagan falls off the ledge and there’s a sort of ripping sound. I’m honestly not sure if he fell to his death or what, though he did speak of it being a privilege to die in service, so probably. Why his accent suddenly changed for this scene though, I have no idea.
I would like to point out Francis’s Harvest Festival attire. It’s a blue velvet button up shirt, with fluffy buttons, covered in a heavily embroidered coat. I would rock this outfit. On Francis it just kind of makes me giggle. I think it’s his posture.
In closing, where the hell was Burlap Sack??