Title: Reign S2.E06 “Three Queens”
Released: 2014
Series:  Reign

Previously on Reign: Kenna found a sex journal. Narcisse scammed a murder confession out of Francis, and intrigued Lola. Francis was an awful asshat and told Mary that he worried she couldn’t give him an heir.

This episode had everything! Catherine and Mary, Mary and Catherine, someone pretending to be Mary… And there may have been some other people around, too? I don’t know. It’s all about the queens, y’all. It may be my new favorite episode.

The Intrigue

  • Francis is making lame conversation about a Venetian ambassador, but Mary isn’t having any of that mundane small talk, after the hurtful things he said. She refuses to pretend it didn’t happen.

  • Catherine is preparing to ride to a party in Beauvais. She tells the servants that she’ll need wine and cheese, and a warming brick for her feet. As with all things, Catherine knows how to travel. Mary invites herself along, with the excuse that it would do her good to get away from the castle.

  • Lola has received a letter from her parents, disowning her, after they heard that the king has claimed her child. She’s upset and Kenna is terrible at trying to console her. Lola determines to find a way to get her own money, and some independence.

  • Mary realizes that they’re not heading in the right direction. She finds out they’re actually going to a village that’s honoring Catherine for her patronage. She’s still trying to buy the affections of the countryside. The carriage is set upon by angry men yelling “Death to royals!” The queens escape the carriage and scurry off into the woods on foot.

Honestly, does Catherine LOOK like she’s wearing her walking shoes?

  • Lola attempts to recover her dowry from her dead husband’s account. But the banker tells her that it doesn’t belong to her anymore, and is going to be sent to Julian’s estranged family. The 16th century was a maddening time for women.

  • Catherine and Mary have turned their fancy cloaks inside out and taken their jewels off, to hide their royal identities. But they have no money, and hangry Catherine is unable to obtain a meal from an innkeeper, until Mary steps in an offers to work for their meals. Catherine parks herself on a bench, while Mary gets to serving drinks.

  • Francis receives word of the missing queens and heads out at once with Pastry Boy, Hot Cousin Louis, and some guards. He leaves Bash in charge while he’s gone.

  • While chowing down like farm hands, Catherine tells Mary they need to buy a horse so that they can escape, but of course she has no idea how much they cost, and is definitely not willing to earn the money to buy one. Catherine then prods Mary into confessing the real reason she wanted to get to Beauvais was because she heard there was a doctor there who specialized in infertility. It’s so sad that Mary is worrying about this, when she and Francis have been married for like ten minutes. While Catherine is advising Mary to accept the distance in her marriage and seek solace elsewhere, they’re interrupted by the arrival of the royal carriage – with Queen Mary and King Francis impostors in it! The new royals promptly start trying to collect money for France. Catherine is impressed by the scheme.

  • Narcisse has heard about Lola’s poor luck with the banker, because this dude knows ALL the gossip. He asks Lola to tea again, but again she refuses. Later, she tells Kenna that he probably just hopes to get intel on Francis, but Kenna is like “or, he wants in your pants. Duh.” Lola unconvincingly denies being curious now that she knows he’s the paragon of lovers from the sex journal.

  • Catherine can barely keep her mouth shut while Fake Mary spins tales about the royal court for the crowd at the inn. Fake Mary confirms that Queen Catherine has brutally punished numerous hatmakers. Catherine whispers to Mary, “First, you should know, he was a terrible, terrible hatmaker.”

  • Lola is surprised (and probably disappointed) that Narcisse actually did mean “tea” when she shows up at his estate. He is predictably creepy and yet sexy while getting up close and personal while offering her a lesson on how to shoot a bow and arrow.

Watch out, Lola! Everyone knows archery is a gateway sport.

  • Francis and the men come upon a woman whose home was burned by the royal impostors when her family didn’t have the money that was demanded of them. Louis points out this tactic is used to discredit the king and the queen. Based on the spitting mad woman, I’d have to say it’s working.

  • Fake Mary doesn’t hold her alcohol well and has trouble remembering who she’s supposed to be. Catherine affects a common accent (which is EVERYTHING) while pretending that she and Mary are con artists as well. They gain her trust, and toss in Catherine’s crown, in exchange for a ride to a trustworthy duke’s estate. Fake Francis, who’s been out torching more peasants’ homes, arrives back, not happy about Fake Mary’s newfound friends.

I agree, Fake Francis, they look like shifty ones.

  • Back at the castle’s evening entertainment (where no one seems concerned about the missing queens), Lola outright asks Narcisse what he wants from her. He claims to just wants a dance, and to help her with her dowry issue. Oh, and to watch her take a bath. Lola looks scandalized, but intrigued.

  • Gifford, the king’s guard arrives at the inn. He tells Mary and Catherine to go wait in the carriage, while he deals with the impostors. Mary tells him that she wants to bring Fake Mary back to the castle. As a pet? Gifford turns out to be shady and in on the scheme, and is pissed at his employees for not knowing who they’d been dealing with. So, he kills everyone in the room, except for Jenny/Fake Mary. She’s to keep quiet, while he deals with the two queens. Then, for some dumb reason, he stashes crying Jenny inside the carriage with the queens. Mary forces the details out of her. Upon finding out they’re in danger, Mary promptly whips out her dagger. Catherine whips out some kind of small trident. “Poison?” Mary asks. “You say that so hopefully, now.” But sadly, Catherine doesn’t always carry poison on her person. Poor Jenny is wigged out by the queens who then instruct her on how to kill a man.

  • When the carriage stops, Gifford reveals that he’s in the employ of a pissed off Queen Elizabeth. This was an inexpensive way to pay Mary back for claiming the English throne. Jenny tries to get the drop on him, but he quickly kills her. Mary thinks fast on her feet and stabs a horse, who then tramples Gifford. Francis and Cousin Louis arrive too late to do any good, but relieved to find them alive. Mary and Francis embrace tearfully. Catherine surveys Jenny’s body, muttering “poor child” before plucking her crown off Jenny’s dead head. She catches Mary looking at her distastefully. “My dear, never give up a crown. To anybody.” Now, that’s just good life advice.

  • Back at the castle, Francis wants to talk, but Mary retires to their chambers. Catherine tells Francis he’s a fool (girl, you don’t even know) and that Mary risked her life this day, because she wanted to get to a fertility doctor, and please him. She tells him Mary is a fighter, and urges him to trust her with whatever is going on with him.

  • Narcisse is out on a castle balcony, watching a woman get into the bath tub he told Lola about, when Lola joins him there. She paid her laundress in gold, to bathe for a lurking creeper. Narcisse is amused by her play, and tells her that he’s already stopped the transfer of her dowry and the money is hers. Lola rewards him with some skillful flirtation, which I didn’t think she had in her.

  • Francis admits to Mary that he didn’t mean the things he said to her. But he leaves out the part about how he’s a terrible jackhole. He won’t tell her what he’s afraid of, but he swears that he’ll take care of it, and end the distance between them.

History According to Reign

  • Posing as royalty probably wasn’t that difficult of a con back in the days before tabloid photography, since regular people likely had no idea what the king and queen even looked like.

  • Mary to Catherine, about her troubles with Francis: “If this goes on, what will our marriage become?” “Normal.” Real talk, Catherine. Mary’s idealism is sweet, but so misplaced considering that she was betrothed to Francis when she was an infant, and as a queen, would never have been raised with the expectation of a romantic marriage.

Number of Times I Forgot I Wasn’t Watching Gossip Girl: 1

1. “If you find that the crown weighs too heavily, line it with velvet. That’s what I do.” Catherine is a treasure, and a woman far ahead of her time.

Well? Are you still walking around the house in your plastic tiara? Are Mary and Catherine your new BrOTP? Tell us in the comments!

Next week: Francis tells someone that Narcisse is blackmailing him. Catherine has an item that would get someone executed if they were caught with it. Francis begs Lola to hide it in Narcisse’s room.


Kandis (she/her) is a proud member of the Austin FYA book club chapter who loves vampires, romance novels, live tweeting CW shows, and Jonah Griggs. She’s not like a regular mom. She’s a cool mom.