Reign on Prime – 1×04: Hearts and Minds

‘Hearts and Minds’ the episode where we discover the type of man Tomas is, and the show tries to ship Bash and Lola (much to my sister’s chagrin) while Mary signs her name to the story of a whore.

Here’s the thing, Prime Underclass New Zealand, with any other show I would have kicked it to the curb by now with its genre identity crisis and, and freakin’ Lola’s costume to the Masque…Clarissa had a better costume. But I’ve stuck with Reign because there’s something completely and utterly fun about the way it throws historical accuracy to the wind and embraces the sensational world of fiction. The world where Francis’ bastard brother with his blue steel peepers steals whatever scene he’s in and there’s a ghost in the walls who goes by the name of Clarissa, which I believe is pronounced Clawr-issa, no? I just hope the CW chooses to keep this gem of a hot mess.

But onto the episode that aired last night on Prime. Mary’s Uncle Claude once again with the obvious statements, ‘Mary, you gotta marry Tomas for the good of Scotland! Otherwise Scotland’s fucked.’ But Mary’s reservations, which is 40% love for Francis, 20% cbf leaving France, 15% need for Henry to consent to her breaking off the engagement with his son, 10% heebie jeebies vibes that Tomas has started to give off and 15% Clarissa-made, stops her from just hopping on a boat to Portugal shouting ‘orale holmes!’

But she’s starting to pack and shit, because it’s not like France is helping defend Scotland from the British bullies. All she has to do is get Henry’s approval, which comes at a cost. They need to prove that Simon (remember that guy who had his sidechick pretend Mary’s dress was poisoned to freak Mary out because British Bully tactics and all that) was the one who bashed Bash, sorry I had to, because a lady of the night heard him banging on about it at a tavern and had come forward with the information. And what better way to legitimise something by having a royal queen who wasn’t there sign her name vouching for verity of the statement? Imagine trying to pull that one nowadays. ‘Oh no officer, I wasn’t there- nor do I have any evidence but the fact that I’m vouching for her makes the story true.’

It’s bad enough that Bash is hurt and so can’t get away from a girl who apparently nursed two of her brothers to death and whose boyfriend was almost executed before being sacrificed by the French hillbilly pagans, but Mary’s caught in a bad engagement as she discovers just what kinda guy Tomas really is when his spies see her and Francis get hot and heavy in the gardens.

Nothing like being engaged to someone else to make that guy you’ve been chasing realise what he’s about to miss out on. However it doesn’t bode well, as we know, because Tomas is like Lord Varys (the Spider) it seems and has spies everywhere. Not liking the fact that the Queen he’s tricked into marrying him is totally into Francis in the kind of way she’s not into him Tomas has ‘words’ with her. And as Tomas starts abusing the whipping boy (someone punished for the misbehaviour of another, which would have been terribly hard for anyone who was the whipping boy for a psychopath) in front of her and threatening to call back the Portugese ships off to Scotland’s aid back, Mary realises that Tomas is a diiiiiiiiiiiick.

The conclusion which Bash (who’s slowly getting better YAY) and Francis also come to when Francis comes to visit him and Tomas shows up all ‘yo stay away from my property’ in reference to Mary. There is a definite testosterone charge in the room which fuels Francis right up and he tries to jab Tomas in the face but Bash, at a detriment to himself, pulls Francis back before he lands a punch. Tomas walks off like ‘fuck yeah’, while Francis tends to his brother who’s now not as well as he was when he visited him. Thanks a lot Francis.

One of Mary’s ladies, the blonde one whose name I can’t remember, is also present when Tomas is smacking the shit out of his servant while he lists off the things he now owns- which includes Mary and her country. She pleads with Mary not to marry him, but Mary’s ready to sacrifice her happiness for the good of Scotland, she does however tell her ladies that they don’t have to go with her…it’s not like they do shit for her anyway.

Especially Kenna who’s come to the conclusion that she does not want to go to Portugal like fuck that so she seeks out the king and tells him that she’s ready to do that thing he wants to do with her…IF he kicks Bash’s mum, Diane, to the side and makes her his new mistress.

Meanwhile Simon’s being framed for jumping Bash and being an English spy and while he’s got major bitchface he’s not responsible for this one thing- and Clarissa who just seems to know everything leaves clues for Mary. Francis figures it out too, along with Bash and Lola, Tomas wants to be legitimised and he can he if he weds a Queen- and you know his last wife died ‘mysteriously’…with the way he kept hitting Miquel I don’t think it’s much of a mystery. So they need to get to the heart of the fabrication of Simon’s guilt.

As Mary finds the prostitute who said she saw Simon talking all that smack at the pub, who eventually confesses that she lied because she was threatened, Bash and Francis find Tomas who’s about to silence Miquel forevs. After a few clashings of steel Tomas is killed and they make it back to the castle in time to save Simon’s life who then gets some money for his troubles and a new job- envoy to Portugal anyone? I like how they then cover up Tomas’ actual death with a story about him leaping to Francis’ aid and being killed by a stag while hunting. Also, Francis’ hand shaking after he killed Tomas and Bash telling him if he wasn’t shaken up by it he would be a monster so it’s all good.

I feel Simon’s line “the matter [of Tomas] will be forgotten by all of us. And history too, no doubt,” would have been better delivered with a breaking of the fourth wall and a wink at the camera.

He’s lucky that Kenna chose that moment to use her vagine powers to stay his execution a few minutes. Henry halts the executioner’s blow to have a conversation with her and finally gives in to her earlier demand like he’s keen if she is. Uh, congrats? Shall we take bets on how long before Henry gets bored with her? Also, there’s still that ‘yuck’ factor because he’s got a son that’s her age like gross.

You know what relationship isn’t gross? Mary’s relationship with Clarissa, it’s super healthy, for Clarissa. It’s obvious she needs a little socialisation, because what normal person does this?

‘Soon.’

I wouldn’t say that final scene ruined Mary’s super HBIC moment from earlier when she puts her super modern flats-clad foot down when Henry’s all like ‘business as usual?’ She takes charge of the situation and snaps her fingers like ‘no, bitch- I’m taking the wheel on these engagement negotiations, oh and first order of business? France’s aid to Scotland’. BOOM. 

No, that final scene just shows that Mary and Clarissa’s relationship has progressed to sleepovers, Mary just doesn’t know it yet. 

Honourable Mentions:

– Mary: “Half of Europe thinks that you are sickly and weak and stunted.” Bahahahaha, imagine that! Oh right, yeah he died of an earache.

– Nostradamus asks Catherine in the beginning who designed the target being used for Francis and Tomas’ archery/pissing contest. I wouldn’t exactly call a sack for a head a ‘design’ but whatever floats your boat I suppose. Catherine is aware of a ‘ghost story about a girl who frightens the maids’ away- I’m just like, that’s fucking rude because Clarissa is really nice if you get to know her, just ask Mary.

– “Every time I look at her I feel better, every time I look at you I feel worse.” Bash, that’s rude. Nostradamus was only trying to help you! And, according to my sister, keep Lola the desperado away from you.

– Queen Catherine doesn’t want Mary to be unhappy, she just doesn’t want Mary to be here. Don’t get it twisted.

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