THE BORGIAS “Death On A Pale Horse” Review


THE BORGIAS “Death On A Pale Horse” Season 1 Episode 7 – With only two episodes left of Showtime’s nine episode season of one of Europe’s most venomous families, Della Rovere has finally come into his own as a viable villain for Rodrigo Borgias and his clan.

Della Rovere has been a constant presence on the show, and one of its duller spots. His storylines, despite an onslaught of gory visuals, were just really tiring to sit through. The Borgias, arguably the main villains of their own series, have always been said to be ruthless and cunning, but the series never portrays them as such, which is my main problem with the show. The antagonists they have “dealt with” have been one episode guest stars who barely get enough screen time to establish their characters, never mind poise much of a threat to the Borgias. This is where Della Rovere should have stepped in: he was the one constant antagonist; in every episode he was scheming to bring Rodrigo down, though how I never quite understood.

Until now. Conducting a 25,000 strong French army through Italian principalities towards Rome in order to usurp the Borgias and instate Cardinal Della Rovere as the funny hat wearer is a sure sign of good organisational skills.

However, unlike the bloodthirsty Borgias, Della Rovere may not be so much into murder in order to see his ambitions come to fruition. His councils with Machiavelli and Medici were not boring anymore, now that there was something great at stake. Machiavelli’s skill at avoiding Florence’s excommunication was a particularly interesting scene.

Lucrezia also finds herself in quite a fix when Sforza declares his allegiance to the French armies. Guilia finally finds herself in a position outside of the Pope’s bed when she is handed the task of finding out news from Lucrezia, which turns out to be less of news gathering expedition and more of a quest to rescue Lucrezia from the Sforza’s enemy household.

I never thought I would enjoy an episode which featured Della Rovere so strongly, but this is possibly the best episode of The Borgias to date.

What did you think of this episode? Sound off in the comments below.

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