Reign Season 1 Review “Monsters”


Well who the hell saw that coming?! In a Reign episode chock full of proposals, both decent and indecent, they were waiting until the very final moments of ‘Monsters’ to shock us all with a union none of us ever thought would happen. Kenna and Bash are now bound by marriage and, despite both of their declarations to the contrary, that’s going to make for a lot of awkward dinners between Mary and Bash. Then there’s Mary’s Lola problem, which may have been resolved this week, and Greer’s ruined reputation after her affair with the kitchen boy was discovered.

We also got to meet new recurring character Penelope (Skins’ Kathryn Prescott – nice to see you!), who this week won the annual ‘Bean Queen’ competition in which servants are able to enjoy some royal privileges for a day but, not content with the scraps Catherine is willing to throw her, Penelope sets about charming that now fully-mad King Henry for her own gain. In love and lust with his sparkly new plaything, Henry promotes the Bean Queen to actual (but not actual) Queen status by the episode’s end and, with Catherine’s position at court in jeopardy again, it’s going to take the efforts of all our character to overthrow this new power couple.

But that didn’t happen in time to save Kenna and Bash from their awkwardly tragic nuptials, everyone forced to see it through on threat of death, and that moment was probably the most disturbing thing Reign has ever endeavored to show us. And, in a series that had the King accidentally throw a woman out of a window mid-coitus and, in this very episode, pull a monster’s tooth out of someone’s back, that’s saying something. As Kenna exclaims, marriage can’t be undone, and I just hope we either get a love square out of this coupling, or they find a way to work it to their advantage.

The episode may have been called ‘Monsters’ but the titular beasties were all of the human variety. King Henry has become a very satisfying series villain, even if we’d all probably quite like him to survive whatever sickness is currently afflicting him and, with his evil whims now effecting characters other than Catherine, we can expect some sort of uprising (familial, rather than actually political) from those at court. With his reign of terror throttling servants and forcing marriages all over the place, we’ll have to wait until we pick up Olivia’s hell-beast storyline but, judging by the size of that embedded tooth, it’s going to be a problem.

What did you think of the episode? Will Lola manage to get married before her baby bump is unveiled? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.