Porthos Learns the Truth About His Father, The Musketeers “The Prodigal Son”
Note: This episode is entitled â€œThe Prodigal Sonâ€ in the US and â€œThe Prodigal Fatherâ€ in the UK.
The Marquis de Belgard has a slippery, silvery tongue doesnâ€™t he? Itâ€™s true that Treville shouldâ€™ve told Porthos the truth about his parentage earlier, but with a tale like that I understand his desire to take it to the grave. Treville knowsÂ Porthos needs to experience his fatherâ€™s treachery firsthand and he does. Not only does Belgard rely on a diet of half-truths and lies to get what he wants, but heâ€™s confident enough that Porthos is ready to take his place by his side, that he shoots Levesque,Â his heir apparent.
Since Belgard was captain of the Royal bodyguard the day Louisâ€™ father Henry was assassinated, he claims he was made into a scapegoat and court-martialed. So, I guess there was no hope of him getting a legitimate job. Instead, he schemes with his daughter and son-in-law. They pretend as though theyâ€™re looking for governesses and take these young girls away to Paris to be auctioned to the highest bidder. How do they get away with it? The girlsâ€™ fatherâ€™s are paid a years salary in advance, which Iâ€™m sure makes it that much easier to say goodbye to their flesh and blood. But even if the families of the girls worried or wondered what happened to them, who would bring charges against a titled gentleman? Levesque and Eleanor are the public face of the operation and can easily be set up as scapegoats, as we see Belgard try to do.
Even though Porthos is desperate to believe whatever comes out of his fatherâ€™s mouth, he knows Treville. The blood oath Treville and De Foix took with Belgard made the captain think he had to carry out his friendâ€™s wishes. The version Porthos gets is that Belgard fell in love withÂ his mother and married her. After Belgard’s father discovered his secret marriage, De Foix and Treville conspired with the elder Belgard and kidnapped both Porthos and Marie-Cossette. For the sake of his family name he remarried and that union produced Eleanor. The real story is that when Belgardâ€™s father discovered the marriage, he threatened to disinherit his son. He told De Foix and Treville he would kill his wife and son in order to retain his position and thatâ€™s why they took Porthos and his mother to those slums. Treville quickly realized his mistake and returned but couldnâ€™t find him until Porthos came to him seeking to be a Musketeer.
It all comes to a head when Belgard overplays his hand. First he wants Porthos to kill Levesque, which he won’t do. Later, he wants Porthos to kill Treville. When it looks like that won’t happen either, Belgard takes matters into his own hands — literally. But both Porthos and Treville shoot him first. They only wound him, which is a bit of a disappointment. But what tipped Porthos off? He knows Belgard is lying after he gives Porthos a portrait of his mother. Itâ€™s true that Marie-Cossette died young, but Porthos still remembers her. He tells his father that black women arenâ€™t interchangeable. Porthos isnâ€™t interested in any sort of legacy Belgard wants to offer him and returns to take his rightful place with the Musketeers, after teasing Athos that his estate is bigger.
Constance Comes Out of Mourning
Was it just me or was Dâ€™Artagnan being a bit of a jerk at the beginning of this episode? I understand that heâ€™s upset. Of course he thinks that with Bonacieux deadÂ there are no more obstacles to him being with Constance. But thatâ€™s one of the problems with propriety. BonacieuxÂ was perceived as a good man and people will talk. But even if he wasn’t, Bonacieux didn’t deserve to die the way he did and I donâ€™t think Dâ€™Artagnan should be glad heâ€™s dead. Itâ€™s only human to mourn him, especially since Constance felt guilty for never loving her husband and for cheating on him. At the end of the day, Iâ€™m glad she rejects Lemayâ€™s proposal â€” did you see that coming? I didnâ€™t â€” and reconciles with Dâ€™Artagnan. I do want them together and happy. And I also want Dâ€™Artagnan to be more understanding with the woman he loves.
Milady and Athos
I donâ€™t think Iâ€™m ever going to get tired of these two. She comes to him with knowledge that will ensure that Rochefort is exposed as a Spanish spy, but she demands to be paid to share what she knows.
Milady: “Give me what I want and you wonâ€™t regret it.”
Athos: “I gave you everything.”
He thinks she should tell him for love of country, but Milady canâ€™t afford to be patriotic. Sheâ€™s lost her status since the King ended their affair and, if nothing else, Milady is good to making opportunities wherever she sees them to keep herself alive. So the information she has on Rochefort doesn’t go any further, for now.
I wonder if she and Rochefort are still tentative allies. They were at the beginning of the episode, but Iâ€™m assuming she has no interest in providing any sort of proof of the Queenâ€™s treason. Now that Rochefort’s made the accusation public, he does need some proof. I wonder where he thinks he’ll get it.
Rochefort Declares Himself
We know heâ€™s got a thing for the Queen, as evidenced by his interest in having a prostitute dress up as Anne earlier in the season. In this episode, Rochefort tells the Queen that he loves her. He, of course, suspects that sheâ€™s been unfaithful to the King because he saw the jeweled crucifix he gave her around Aramisâ€™s neck. He tells her he can forgive her, but only if she tells Rochefort she loves him. She doesnâ€™t and calls for her servants. But thereâ€™s no one there; they all report to him now. Itâ€™s Constance who interrupts them as Rochefort tries to force himself on Anne. In the ensuring struggle, the Queen is able to wound him. But as he stumbles out of her rooms, he calls for the guards and tells them there is treason in their midst. Rochefort has the king’s ear as well as his trust. I don’t think there’s anyway the King won’t believe him.
The Musketeers airs Saturdays at 9/8c on BBC America.
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