Three Moments of Goodness: Catherine’s Truths Revealed, Reign “Inquisition”
Megan Follows has been a raging girl crush for me for years and years; she was one of my main draws for Reign, and tonight she just KILLED IT. For the most part, Queen Catherine’s been running on fear, jealousy, and rage, and we’ve had a few glimpses of her sacrifices, most recently in “Left Behind,” when she revealed to Mary and her ladies that she did not escape unscathed from an attack on her as a young girl.
That was a mere warmup. In “Inquisition,” we got a few more pieces of her backstory, and they were whoppers, and my Moments of Goodness.
Catherine and Henry
We’ve only witnessed the venom in their marriage, and now with Henry gunning for Catherine’s head, she comes to him to plead for reason, and they both drop their walls. Catherine calls him out on the fact that they did love each other in the early years of their marriage, and he agrees, and he admits that he was heartbroken when their marriage was reduced to a perfunctory, passionless quest to produce an heir after a barren decade. He asks her to let her hair down, and she does, and for a moment they rekindle that missing passion.
Catherine and Richard
Henry’s old friend, Richard (Bitten‘s Greg Bryk) is brought to court to help indict Catherine. After she leaves Henry’s bed, she returns to her cell to find Richard waiting. He tells her Henry has had a change of heart, that the proceedings will be postponed, and then the energy in the scene shifts and she rushes into his arms and we discover that they were lovers and Catherine cast him out of court years earlier to protect him. She tells him he is her best love and that she’s never lied to him and he laughs that she is probably lying to him now.
Catherine and Nostradamus
Clarissa has been the ghost in the shadows of the castle, presumably a disfigured maid formerly in the service of the court. When she confronts Catherine and condemns her and Nostradamus, Catherine goes to see him and demands the truth about the “ghost” now made very real flesh and blood. Nostradamus tells her Clarissa was abandoned as an infant because she carried a red birthmark called a “devil’s kiss.” He confesses that years of mad science at his father’s hand had horribly disfigured her and other children had demonized her for her appearance, so he brought her to refuge at court. The story wounds Catherine gravely and we get the sense there is something more untold.
Separately, Bash and Mary hear from an elder chambermaid that Catherine concealed the birth of a child years earlier–a girl with a birthmark. This is then revealed in front of the King, and Richard is shaved to reveal the same birthmark under his beard. Henry sends him off to be killed as the pieces fall into place that Clarissa is Richard and Catherine’s abandoned daughter.
Later, after Catherine fails at an attempt to murder Mary, Clarissa saves them both, calling Catherine “Mother,” and Catherine rages at her that she should have died, that she didn’t want her. Clarissa disappears as the guards enter and Catherine is carted away as an assassin. We are unsure how much of it Mary heard.
Megan Follows owned all of it–from Catherine’s plotting to her joy to her affection to her yearning to her fear and unbridled, rage-fueled determination to save Francis and herself. For a few moments there, it looked like Catherine might suicide, and I’m so glad that was a fakeout.
Follows is a joy to watch and I couldn’t imagine them writing out Catherine so soon. I loved the two brief moments where Catherine let her hair down and “unqueened” herself, and we saw who she had once been, who she was when both Henry and Richard had loved her, before she pulled her hair back and put on the mask again.
So SO good. Reign is on a short break for the Olympics, and will return in three weeks. You can watch “Inquisition” tomorrow on The CW.
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