Hello, fellow Reignites! We survived the holiday hiatus! Go us! Last night's episode was another delicious serving and a lot happened, so let’s get on with it, shall we?
We open up with a majestic parade of soldiers marching out of the palace gates while Catherine and Mary watch from a balcony. Catherine, the sour puss she is, takes this moment to rub it in Mary’s face that Olivia is Francis’s mistress. Later on, Catherine congratulates the very same Olivia on playing her part in keeping her son and Mary distant from one another. Olivia hates how she’s Catherine’s pawn and knows Francis truly loves Mary. How does she know this? Let’s just say Francis doesn’t call out Olivia’s name during their alone time.
Francis and Charles practice dueling with forks, which, to Francis, might as well be called dinglehoppers. Mary walks in, looking gorgeous as always, and as soon as she and her future hubby are alone, she launches into a tirade about how painful it is to watch him and Olivia prance around. On a side note, Mary’s hair looks amazing and Francis is looking rather fine himself.
Later, Catherine and Francis welcome the Italian Count Vincent to their court while Bash and his mother, Mistress Diane, have a bit of a downer chat about their safety. Diane suggests they ask King Leather Pants to claim Bash as his legal son to secure their place in court. Mostly, Mistress Diane is worried about being thrown over by Catherine. You know, King Leather Pants’s real wife.
In the kitchens, Greer and Leith enjoy some down time while Leith cooks. Leith decides to show Greer how to flip a crepe, which results in a charmingly seductive moment. I ship this couple hard, people.
Count Vincent, Francis, Catherine, and Mary drinks some wine and engage in an incredibly awkward conversation in which the Count recounts how his son was taken hostage a few years ago and the high price he had to pay to free him. When it becomes apparent that Catherine should’ve had France lend their aid since she’s a fellow Italian, the conversation grows even more awkward. Fail, Catherine, fail.
Oh, look! It’s Greith again! Greer is dressed in servant’s clothes and thinks she looks ridiculous. Leith assures her she does not and just as they’re about to get all cute and lovey dovey, guards appear and question them. With stern expressions and dramatic music, these guards are up to no good. They tell Greith to return to the kitchens because nobody’s leaving the palace today. Yikes.
Count Vincent wants to know when King Leather Pants is returning and is pleased to hear he won’t be showing up soon. Francis tells Mary to go upstairs, but a grumpy guard makes it clear she shouldn’t make a single move. The Count is clearly up to no good. He claims he’s come for payback for his son, who died shortly after his release. Then, as all good villains do, the Count reveals how he’s been plotting to takeover the castle for weeks. Such a sneaky man.
Later, Francis tries to get the Count to take a crapton of money, but the Count is being difficult. So what does Catherine do? She offers up Mary as payment. Francis offers himself up for ransom instead, a far more appealing offer to the Count as he'd rather have the heir of France as a bargaining chip.
As the Italian soldiers revel in their new digs, Kenna gets cornered and harassed. Mary swoops in for the rescue and manages to persuade the Count to keep her and her ladies safe. He agrees, just as long as they attend the feast later that night. The ladies reconvene in Mary’s room and when Greer joins them, disguised as a kitchen maid, Mary tells them she doesn’t want to wait for Catherine and the Count to talk it out. So, she goes into the creepy tunnel to find Creepy Clarissa asks her shady friend to show her a safe way out of the castle. Clarissa, in her usual creepy way, agrees.
Meanwhile, Bash has been imprisoned, but manages to escape by knocking out a guard who brings him some food. He doesn’t get far, though, and is soon cornered by two more guards. With swords.
Mary checks in with Catherine and learns that Francis has offered himself up. When Mary tells Catherine of her plan of escaping through the secret passageways, Catherine replies with one of the night’s best lines, “Oh, for a moment I thought you had a plan.” Leave it to Catherine to deliver some enjoyable snark. But instead of completely shutting Mary down, Catherine says they’ll need a diversion and suggests they all attend the feast to buy Francis some time to get everyone out. Catherine then declares she’ll remain behind to keep the Count none the wiser of their plans. They then exchange this bit of splendid dialogue:
Catherine: “I would go into Hell for [Francis]. How far would you go for him?”
Mary: “It seems we will go into hell together then.”
Mary later clues Francis on the plan, but he doesn’t want to go along with it because he wants to make sure she gets out first. Mary gives a touching speech about trusting him to lead their people to safety and how he must trust her to get herself out. And then they kiss. Yay for kissing! But then an Italian guard barges in and interrupts them. Rude.
Bash, who is locked up again, is told he’s been ordered to be killed for his earlier stunt, but the guard instead gives him a drink because Mistress Diane is paying him to keep Bash alive. I'm not sure I want to know what kind of payment she's issuing.
Catherine, shedding her usual sass and condescension, tells Mary and the girls not to be afraid, that she will be there to make sure they arrive and depart from the feast safely and successfully. Lola speaks out and calls Catherine out, but the queen wins them over with a story of how she was a hostage herself when she was only eight years old and that she was saved before her captors could claim her. Her survival story earns her some points with the girls.
Cutting to the feast, Catherine presents the Italian intruders with gold as a gift. This is one tense dinner party. Meanwhile, Francis kicks the escape plan into motion by racking up an Italian body count. Olivia, who’s been assigned the duty of standing in the creepy tunnel to open the passage door for everyone, tries to get Francis to take her with him, but he insists she stay behind to ensure Mary’s safety. She’s still not thrilled about it and reluctantly stays put.
Back at the feast, Mary tells the Count she’s not feeling good (I’m pretty sure she blames it on feminine issues…) and he buys it. Mary and her ladies go to meet Olivia, but lo and behold, dear old Olivia isn’t there to open the passageway door.
In the kitchen, Leith has ensured everyone has left and when a guard comes in looking for Greer, he attacks him. Poor Leith takes a beating, but before it gets too dangerous, Greer appears and takes a note from dear old Rapunzel (Tangled) and whaps the guard over the head with a frying pan. Leith finishes the job by slicing his neck.
Before Mary and her ladies can figure out a Plan B, one of the Count’s guards comes to return them to the feast. Meanwhile, Olivia wanders through the passageway and is, presumably ambushed by Creepy Clarissa. When Mary and Co return to the feast, Catherine instantly tries to persuade the Count to take the gold and let them all go. She then offers up the girls, much to their shock and horror, and in the end, after shouting how he wants them to “understand his loss”, he agrees to Catherine’s offer. He and his men proceed attacking the women. Side note: I must commend Adelaide Kane and her fellow actresses on their acting in this scene as they display a heart-wrenching and authentic amount of fear and horror.
Fed up, Catherine demands the Count to take his hands off Mary. Suddenly, his men’s noses begin bleeding and it isn’t long before they collapse to the floor. Knowing they’ve been poisoned, the Count demands answers. Catherine, delivering yet another powerful line, says, “Poison is an art and the essence of art is surprise.” Mary realizes the gold was poisoned. The Count never touched the gold, though, and as he draws his dagger and lunges for the queen, Mary stabs him in the neck with a dinglehopper. Francis appears and slices off the Count’s hand, which I was so not expecting and this pretty much sums up my reaction:
Bash and Mistress Diane take a stroll outside and Bash calls his mother out on her playing a larger role in the Italian Takeover than simply paying the guards to keep him safe. Bash is disgusted with her and leaves.
Mary confronts Francis in a fit of emotional rage and asks why he didn’t follow through with the original plan. His answer? “Because I love you.” Let’s take a moment to party hard over this declaration. The episode ends with them making out and getting rather hot and heavy in bed. Looks like they’re not going to wait for their wedding night to consummate their relationship…
Best Line: Francis:
"Because I love you."
"Poison is an art and the essence of art is surprise.”
-Where was Nostradamus during all of this?
-What happened to Olivia? Did Creepy Clarissa drag her off somewhere?
Moral of the Episode:
-Never underestimate the power of forks and frying pans.
So, what did you think of the episode? Wasn't it awesome? And next week's is the mid-season finale, so we better start preparing for another hiatus!