He Who Discovers His Own Self, Discovers God
Readership, I’m genuinely frustrated with this show. I keep coming back to it, week after week, as I keep hoping that it will get better. It does, in some ways, only to disappoint me in others. Again, there is no doubt that the acting and the cinematography is amazing, but time after time, the writing lets the show down. Not every show has a good first half, or even a first season, but as I said…I struggle.
The plotline within the Court is complicated and genuinely the one I struggle with the most in this show. Joan is seemingly fine after aborting her child, and is easily able to greet her cousin, who is the Queen of Catalonia–she is very displeased with the impending marriage between Isabella and Nicholas. Of course, since De Nogaret doesn’t wish for this marriage, either, he finds a way to get a rumor to Nicholas’ mother regarding them sleeping together before marriage. King Philip, so sure of his daughter’s purity, submits her to a purity test, sure she will survive it unscathed. De Nogaret actually seems upset that Isabella is going to be humiliated like this, but hey–you started it, asshole.
It does result in a honest conversation between Joan and her daughter, however, regarding how much Isabella loves Nicholas, and how she doesn’t regret what she’s done. Joan, of course, is going to support her daughter as best she can, but it’s clear she’s jealous that she’s trapped in a loveless marriage herself. Like a good mother, she protects her daughter, paying off the midwife to lie about Isabella’s ‘chastity’–which, for the record, could have been damaged by riding a horse. While these sorts of purity tests were common in this time period, the pure lack of understanding on how women’s bodies work is still something that prevails today.
While the marriage is seemingly ‘saved’, Isabella assumes that Nicholas must have told his mother and doesn’t want to marry him any longer, asking De Nogaret to get her out of the engagement. It seems such a heel turn, just for the sake of the plot, but, well–we all know she marries England. I suppose they have to get there, somehow.
Also–remember how I was frustrated that Joan didn’t just sleep with her husband to cover up her bastard-child? She has to do that, now, as she finds out her maid-in-waiting didn’t actually give her the drug to abort the child. So it’s sleep with her husband, or admit she’s an adulterer. …glad she finally came to her senses?
I honestly don’t know; I really enjoyed the Templar plotline this episode, but this Court drama is just a bit too much for me.
Things were more interesting on the Templar side of things. Landry puts Gwaine in charge of finding out who murdered our poor prisoner (a bad decision in my estimation), and decides he needs to go seek out a pagan in the woods. See, the muslim had a tattoo on his arm, and it triggered some forgotten memory in Landry–apparently this old pagan-witch-type-man can help him remember. How? Well, through some sort of elixir that makes him remember the past (seriously). I’m willing to go along with it, as we’ve already started to establish that the Grail might be more than a bit magical.
In a flashback we see that Godfrey was being tracked by a ‘Cathar’ Christian who wanted the Grail. In an attempt to throw him off, Godfrey had hidden in the Nunnery where Landry was being raised. Through a series of events, Godfrey ends up taking Landry as a squire. It’s a good story–the only thing that bothered me was the story of the ‘two wolves’ Godfrey shares with Landry. To my knowledge it’s originally a Cherokee myth, not a Christian one–seeing it repurposed for this story rings hollow for me. All of this leads Landry to trigger a key memory of a group called the ‘Brotherhood of Light’ — a group that believes in the motto, “He who discovers himself, discovers God.”
Percifal is having his own adventure trying to get his necklace back from the young Jewish girl, who now realizes that the man she’s supposed to lead him to is Roland, of all people, and she isn’t about that life. I genuinely appreciate that she’s a good person; she is trying to help her people but isn’t going to sell someone else out to a killer to do so. However, for refusing to give Percifal over to Roland, her people face consequences–these plotlines are going to converge quickly, I believe.
As for the murder? Well…Gwaine ends up believing it’s a young Templar initiate, and whips him until he confesses to it. It’s easy to tell he’s lying, but nevertheless, he will hang for his ‘crime’ in the evening. Feeling pity for him,Tancrede goes to speak with him…and we cut to him revealing that he was the one who killed the prisoner, as he believed his warnings–that the Grail would destroy the Templars.
So…interesting? I’m really interested to see where this Grail storyline is going to go. Less interested in the Court storyline.