Reign
Thursday 21:00 on CW
2 Seasons, 23 Episodes

Genre: Family / Drama

Season Premiere

Hidden between the lines of the history books is the story of Mary Stuart, the young woman the world would come to know as Mary, Queen of Scots. Queen of Scotland since she was six days old, the teenage Mary is already a headstrong monarch - beautiful, passionate, and poised at the very beginning of her tumultuous rise to power. Arriving in France with four close friends as her more
... ladies-in-waiting, Mary has been sent to secure Scotland's strategic alliance by formalizing her arranged engagement to the French king's dashing son, Prince Francis. But the match isn't signed and sealed, it depends more on politics, religion and secret agendas than affairs of the heart. Prince Francis is intrigued by the fiery Scot, but like most young men, he resists the idea of settling down into marriage, especially when he has a history with a lady of the court and his own point of view on the wisdom of an alliance with Scotland. Still, an attraction between Mary and Francis is ignited. Further complicating things is Bash, Francis' roguish half-brother, who has a history of his own - despite his illegitimate birth, Bash is his father's favorite. And now that Bash has caught Mary's eye, a royal triangle may be forming. While at French Court, fierce foes and dark forces conspire to sabotage Mary's marriage to Francis and even threaten her life, until a mysterious shrouded guide becomes her ally. With danger and sexual intrigue around every dark castle corner, Mary rallies her ladies-in-waiting and steels herself, ready to rule the new land and balance the demands of her country and her heart.
 
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Reign RECAP and REVIEWS (42)

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  • Season 1 Finale Long Live the Queen

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    Season 1 Finale  Long Live the Queen This week on the season finale of Reign, Mary puts on her big girl crown while Francis takes part in a full metal joust. Outside of royal maneuvering, Bash fights the darkness, Lola is maybe dying, and Greer has boy troubles.
    "This finale has crazy Batman-esque villains with vampire teeth, black plagues, exploding ships, ghost tennis players, and Mary making a power move with only the might of her wardrobe. So basically, it's a fairly normal episode of Reign


    I think once you've had "sexed to death" as an actual method of murder, the bar has been raised pretty high on what constitutes a crazy episode of this show. 


    A Queen Rises


    This puts an ellipsis on the end of what started out as my favorite show of the season, went through a bit of a stumbling period, and righted itself to remain one of the most ambitious and insane shows airing on prime time. The only other show I can think of as cr...
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  • I Believe In a Thing Called Love

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    I Believe In a Thing Called Love

    Fratricide! Patricide! Murderous-guy-with-pointy-teeth-icide! Reign Season 1 Episode 22 ended the show's premiere season with a bang -- by loading up on wall-to-wall murders.

    Okay, only two of those murders actually happened up close and on camera --and two murders in an hour only usually counts as "light cardio" on Reign.

    But what murders these ones were! Though I was sad that we never quite found out the source of Henry's madness (the ghost of his brother who looked like Mischa Barton in The Sixth Sense?), his death scene was spectacular -- particularly Catherine's role in it.

    Poor, poor Catherine. That sick bastard was the only person she actually liked, huh?

    Catherine's turn on Henry's death bed was pathetic, beautiful, and beautifully pathetic -- so if you had any qualms about declaring her this show's secret weapon, throw them away now. Girl is amazing.

    But what will she -- or we -- do now that that leather-pants'...
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  • We Can Make It If We Run

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    We Can Make It If We Run

    Love -- romantic, familial, and otherwise -- was certainly a battlefield on Reign Season 1 Episode 21; why, it even had a body count!

    But as much as I enjoyed Lola's sudden transformation from passive victim into Lady Macbeth, the real star of this show was the man who never showed his face.

    Yes, kids, we are back on the trail of the Darkness! Glad to know Bash didn't just forget about it after he started getting laid.

    So who is the Darkness? Well, we know from Pascal that he has pointy teeth, and he murdered Pascal's parents...except we now know that Bash murdered Pascal's father. I don't know, I wouldn't call Bash's teeth "pointy," exactly...geez, you're pretty judgmental for a 10-year-old covered in blood, Pascal!

    And is Kenna's trip with Pascal somehow a trap? Was Pascal himself some kind of trap, sent to draw Bash and his family into unsafe places? Is Bash, with his pagan bloodline, somehow responsible for all of thi...
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  • Long Kill The King

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    Long Kill The King

    Reign benefits and suffers from a selective memory. It chooses what it likes about history and what it doesn't. It takes creative liberties to a new threshold, creating an unpredictable atmosphere. Who would have guessed Bash would have been named 'king-to-be' for a short while? Of course, the problem with its selective memory is that selective memory includes storylines. I had hoped Reign had long forgotten the Darkness storyline, but alas. It's back. Yay.


    One of the other problems of picking and choosing history is what is chosen. Or maybe what hasn't been. There are a LOT of missing things I wished we could see. Mary taking power and control while Francis is gone. Catherine at court. Too much time passes in between episodes -- Francis has come back, Mary Tudor is dead (according to King Henry), Kenna and Bash are close now. All this stuff happened since last week and we didn't get to see it. 

    And we're stuck with the Darkness ...
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  • Off With Your Head

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    Off With Your Head

    You never forget your first time. The first time you have an enemy beheaded for your personal gain, I mean. Ewww, what did you think I was talking about?

    Aside from including the best surprise beheading this side of Seven, Reign Season 1 Episode 20 was noteworthy for showing Mary's other first time -- her first abuse of power.

    Mary has served as a moral barometer of sorts for all of Reign Season 1 -- expecting absolute fairness in all situations, as everyone around her, from Francis to Kenna, becomes corrupted by little tastes of power.

    And yet here we are, having just seen Mary abuse her own power more intensely than anyone this side of Queen Catherine.

    Is this a commentary on how all power inevitably corrupts? The impossibility of a royal retaining a moral compass? A set-up to help TV recappers make beheading puns? Hey, let's not get ahead of ourselves here (sorry, had to).

    In Greek mythology, if you cut off one of th...
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  • A Means to an End

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    A Means to an End

    A little battlefield action, some plotting at court and the test of true love. Another episode of Reign.

    "If the end of your story's a happy one, does the end really matter?" Greer offers this advice to Lola. It really applies to everything on the show, doesn't it? Catherine believes in a means to an end. Same with Francis and Henry.


    But Mary's not so sure. Maybe it's because she was a royal raised by nuns or because she's the lead of a CW show where we are supposed to relate to Mary. Once upon a time, we were meant to relate to Elena Gilbert. This did not end well. However, Reign has what The Vampire Diaries does not: Mary, Queen of Scots. It's only when Francis and Bash step out of picture that Mary really shines. She's a grownup queen making her own decisions and risking it all for her love of Scotland. 


    It's another Mary episode, ladies and gentleman. For better or wor...
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  • An Awful Mistake

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    An Awful Mistake

    Are you a fan of detailed discussions of military strategy? Aggressive Renaissance sex? Or the way Lord Castleroy kind of looks like a blond version of Cousin Larry Appleton from Perfect Strangers?

    If you said "yes," to any of these questions, then mazel tov: Reign Season 1 Episode 19 had each of those elements in spades.

    However, if you're more into, say, the show's supernaturally-inclined plot elements, or love triangles, or suitcase vipers, then you were pretty much out of luck, as the show maintained its recent focus on France's political and military future.

    Reign has a few different modes--dreamy, intense romance; camp spectacular; spooky ghost/ murder/ demon (?) situations--but recently, the show's been all business.

    This episode intensified that focus, even examining King Henry's ongoing (and still unexplained) madness primarily from the position of it's impact on France's national policy.

    Which, yes, is probabl...
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  • We Are Rulers, Not Schoolchildren

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    We Are Rulers, Not Schoolchildren

    On this episode of Reign, Mary and Francis must choose between helping France or Scotland while dealing with problems in their marriage.

    I'd Die For My Country


    It's been almost a month since Francis locked Mary in a tower, according to a quick girl talk session after Mary and friends partake in a snowball fight. It feels like what men imagine girls' pillow fights at sleepovers are like; it is that cheesy of a sequence. Remember when they just moped about when they would have their first kiss? I miss those days a bit (so does Greer). Now, everyone's married, or pregnant, or betrothed. 


    It's Mary's episode, finally. We forget -- as well as Francis -- that Mary is Mary, Queen of Scots, not Mary, Queen of France. Scotland's important too! In fact, it is -- gasp -- in jeopardy. Mary de Guise, Mary's mom, is holed up in a siege by Protestants. Mama needs backup. 


    So Francis and Mary march to Francis' mo...
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  • Pious Plotters

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    Pious Plotters

    On tonight's episode of Reign, we witness a wedding, a big fight and another entry in the Henry the mad saga. Often times, around this time of the typical 22 episode season, we get filler episodes. Episodes meant to move the plot along and not offer much momentum. Rather, they set the pieces up for the finale. 


    I'm not sure what a filler episode looks like for Reign. There is always a piece of the puzzle that shifts ever so slightly. The game changer this episode? Never saw coming. But it still feels like a filler episode.

    Scotland Versus Francis 


    Let's just get it out of the way because this is what I am most interested in. Scotland needs Mary now more than ever, especially as tensions with France and her paramour Francis are high. 


    Since the king is as mad as the Mad King (Game of Thrones reference!), Mary and Francis do the dirty work by meeting with a Car...
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  • Mad Kings and Englishmen

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    Mad Kings and Englishmen

    Guys, before we get any deeper into Reign Season 1 Episode 18, we have to talk about something important. We need to talk about the viper in the suitcase.

    I don't know that I have ever loved anything on this beautiful, cuckoo-bananas show more than I have loved the viper in the suitcase--and I am saying that after watching an episode that featured King Henry tied up and wearing leather trousers.

    I liked the viper THAT much. It was more than just delightfully demented (but I mean, where is Queen Catherine keeping all her spare vipers so that she can get one on such short notice?).

    The viper in the suitcase was a great metaphor for everything that's wonderful about this show, which lives and thrives by its own deranged logic, and somehow makes it all seem perfectly natural.  #sixvipersandamovie

    I know there was a lot of conspiracy and international intrigue in this episode, but once again, I could barely focus on it due to all the ...
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