Series Spotlight

[Series Spotlight] Reign

reignSeries Spotlight is a monthly feature in which I talk about television shows or miniseries that has caught my attention and/or undying devotion. Have a suggestion for a TV show I should watch? Let me know in the comments!

The Premise: Mary Stuart lives a quiet life in a secluded convent until a lovely afternoon meal reveals the truth: as queen of Scotland, assassination attempts still loom over her. She is sent back to French court and her betrothed, Francis, the dauphin of France. But the childhood home she knew is full to bursting with secrets, lies and intrigue, and it’s only a matter of time before they hurt Mary…or worse, kill her.

giphy

Mary-mary-queen-of-scots-reign-36043420-245-294The Draw: I was a big fan of The Tudors on HBO, as overdramatic as it could be sometimes. Reign definitely aims for the same audience. However, they can do The Tudors one better, with Adelaide Kane at the helm. She is a captivating presence on screen, and she can sell the outlandish plot twists so well that you find yourself nodding along and cheering for her. She might play a girl new to the dangers of French court, but in her performance, you can see the woman that Mary is becoming, and the masterful way she’ll chart her own destiny.

Why You Should Stick Around: I won’t lie, the first episode is going to be hit-or-miss. It’s a series based on history that disregards historical detail, though the Forever 21-esque prom dresses worn by Mary’s ladies-in-waiting are pretty cute. But the electricity between Mary and Toby Regbo’s Francis could light up an entire castle. It could also set everything aflame, and not in a good way.

While the boys are pretty cute (as they usually are in CW shows), it’s the women who are the most compelling characters. Kane is a commanding presence in every scene she participates in, matched only by Megan Follows in the role of Queen Catherine de Medici. Their interactions are laced with begrudged respect, and both women are clearly more clever than the world would prefer them to be.

catherine

The show is less kind to Mary’s ladies-in-waiting, who seem to be filling the “gossip & intrigue” portion of the hour. All the actresses are capable & strong, so I’m hoping that the second season gives them more time to inhabit their own stories.

And what would a CW show be without a super sexy~~ love triangle? Bash and Francis do get quite moony over Mary, though she is already engaged & predisposed to love Francis. I will admit to being a Francis/Mary shipper, though I wouldn’t exactly be averse to Francis/Mary/Bash. The more, the merrier?

frary

Next month on Series Spotlight: “Don’t be where I can’t see you.”

January Series Spotlight: Nikita on The CW
February Series Spotlight: Shitsuren Chocolatier (Heartbroken Chocolatier) on Fuji TV [Japanese drama]
March Series Spotlight: Veronica Mars on The CW
April: New Girl on Fox

(all gifs gathered from Google images)

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