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Scarlett45

S01.E02: To War Rather than to Bed

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Young Catherine begins to learn how to outwit the royal household in order to secure her future.

Air Date September 18, 2022. 

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Diane is so creepy with her grooming. I'm glad they had the scene of Henri laughing at her being too old for him to marry. 

It's also hard to watch Henri being devoted to a creepy old woman when young Catherine is so objectively adorable. (I don't know when Samantha Mortonson will come in playing Catherine, but as she is in the present-day scenes, she's gonna become way more woman than Henri could ever handle.)

I'm not quite sure where the whole screwing the groom thing came out of. I guess to show us that Catherine is really desperate, but maybe more to introduce her willing use of poisoning? Also, it doesn't seem like that poison worked as fast as she would need it to, if indeed the groom ate the poisoned apple. Mathilde didn't do the greatest job of making sure he got it.

Why did the servant lady want the use of Catherine's magician? Surely Catherine's poisoner perfumer would be the better option. Italians had a reputation for being poisoners, so it does make sense she'd come to Catherine.

I'm wondering if they're trying to set up a maybe magic maybe mundane thing with the poisons and magician.

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I've loved Catherine and loathed Dianr since I was 12 and devouring Jean Plaidy. Megan Follows did an amazing job on a somewhat awful show, but this is next level awesome! Both Catherines here are so good. Hate that I have to wait a week for more

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40 minutes ago, brisbydog said:

I've loved Catherine and loathed Dianr since I was 12 and devouring Jean Plaidy. Megan Follows did an amazing job on a somewhat awful show, but this is next level awesome! Both Catherines here are so good. Hate that I have to wait a week for more

Awe I LOVE Reign. I agree though that Megan Follows was great as Catherine and these two are fantastic as well. I'm just confused about the stable guy’s kid. Why did Catherine’s magician kill him?

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Seriously, what does Catherine see in Henry? Groomed or not, he’s an asshole! Even if he didn’t love her and was forced into the marriage so was she! You don’t have to love her but you can treat her with some damn respect!

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11 minutes ago, Spartan Girl said:

Seriously, what does Catherine see in Henry?

A better life than she had back in Italy.

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5 minutes ago, AntFTW said:

A better life than she had back in Italy.

True. I get it. He was her husband, and douchewad or not, she was stuck with him. Still.

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Didn't think i was going to enjoy this but I am really enjoying it.

I love young Catherine's snarky attitude and cunningness.  Also, breaking the 4th wall was a great addition to the show.

Henri is really into some freaky shit with Diane - having sex while reading the bible.  His brother is no better with his attitude towards the Princesses.  Acts more like a school boy pulling the girl's pigtails than a future king.

Nice to see Colm Meany back as the King. 

Can't believe the little person (her name escapes me) would sell Catherine out for a roll in the hay with the future King. 

I am assuming that the sultan who was at the palace was Suleiman the magnificent? 

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I am enjoying the show so far, I love how Catherine is dealing with Diane, she may only be a teenager, but she is smart and proactive. 

I don't quite see her resorting to sleeping with a stable hand SO quickly, its been what, a few months? 

11 hours ago, Spartan Girl said:

Seriously, what does Catherine see in Henry? Groomed or not, he’s an asshole! Even if he didn’t love her and was forced into the marriage so was she! You don’t have to love her but you can treat her with some damn respect!

I am not so upset with Henri yet. He was being a little jerk, but he did make up with her and he is treating her a lot better. He is listening to her ideas. He does understand if she doesn't conceive she has a lot to lose, and if he won't have sex with her that isn't really fair to her. But even teenage boys have emotions around sex, I bet he is in love with Diane and feels like he is betraying her in some way.

His brother though is a total dick.

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4 minutes ago, Scarlett45 said:

I don't quite see her resorting to sleeping with a stable hand SO quickly, its been what, a few months? 

I am not so upset with Henri yet. He was being a little jerk, but he did make up with her and he is treating her a lot better. He is listening to her ideas. He does understand if she doesn't conceive she has a lot to lose, and if he won't have sex with her that isn't really fair to her. But even teenage boys have emotions around sex, I bet he is in love with Diane and feels like he is betraying her in some way.

His brother though is a total dick.

I read the stablehand as an attempt to get pregnant.  It's not like they had paternity tests then.  The Dauphin is a psychopath.

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Just now, anoninrva said:

I read the stablehand as an attempt to get pregnant.  It's not like they had paternity tests then.  The Dauphin is a psychopath.

Yes yes I get that part (I didnt think she was having sex with the stable hand for personal reasons), but adultery will get you KILLED. I could see her resorting to that in a year or two, but a few months after marriage? That seemed to be ammped up for the audience. Desperation to get pregnant is a thing, but if you are discovered to be unfaithful to a Prince of France, worse things await you than being sent back to Italy. I just think she wouldve tried EVERYTHING else she could think of to work on her relationship with Henri before she thought of such a thing.

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17 hours ago, PinkRibbons said:

It's also hard to watch Henri being devoted to a creepy old woman when young Catherine is so objectively adorable. (I don't know when Samantha Mortonson will come in playing Catherine, but as she is in the present-day scenes, she's gonna become way more woman than Henri could ever handle.)

This is true. The characterization of Diane is not what I was expecting. I was expecting a sexy mature woman, maybe not a "great beauty" but certainly alluring. This Diane is just annoying and not as smart as she thinks she is. You would think she would be smarter and play nice- her position is 100% dependent on Henri's favor, she should be getting some houses and jewels and stashing them away for a rainy day, and making allies.

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The King's bedroom seems to be decorated by a taxidermist.   The bed with matching bears maybe gets him in the mood, but is that a wild boar in the foreground?  Who does that?

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Lots of emphasis on sex this week, not that I'm complaining.

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And what the hell is Mathilde up to?

serpent2cc.jpg.c367b0cd42585250bbcfa9a061e1c044.jpg

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20 minutes ago, Razzberry said:

And what the hell is Mathilde up to?

Right about where she wants to be I'd guess...I really love this show already. Everyone is so badly behaved, but you can see their motivations, and Catherine made desperate moves as well as calculated ones. You can see that by the time she's narrating she no longer has to make desperate choices, and everything she does is calculated. I also lie her little entourage. They are loyal to her, but only insofar as it  benefits them. They have their own ambitions.

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Is this show not a comedy? Because it cracks me up.

It gives me the same comedic tones/vibes/senses/thrills like The Great does on Hulu.

Forgive me for not thinking of better words.

Edited by AntFTW
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I'm loving the performance by Liv Hill as young Catherine.  I'll miss her when she ages out.  However, as much as I'm enjoying watching her outsmart those around her who wish her ill (especially Diane) poisoning the stablehand to keep him quiet was pretty evil.  (And blowing up a kitchen maid, no matter how abusive she was, was pretty evil too.)

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I was really excited about a Catherine de Medici show, and so far its very much living up to my expectations, even if, like most Showtime royal shows, it obviously takes some artistic license. I am surprised by the tone, its very different than the rest of the shows (and is from a different source) in its framing device and its more sarcastic darkly humorous tone complete with fourth wall breaking. It definitely reminds me of The Great, especially with its use of modern music and the violent debauched court. 

Diane has really underestimated Catherine, she is not someone you want to mess with, even as a teenager. I loved when she was begging them to find Henri a new bride who was "young, pure, virginal, did I mention young" while Diane looked like she was sucking on an egg. Diane is so creepy, how long has she been sleeping with Henri? He looks so much younger than her and is so deferential towards her, she seems like a real creep. Henri can be an immature jerk at times, but he's an absolute prize compared to his brother, who's like an immature little kid mixed with a budding serial killer. At least Henri was nicer to Catherine this episode, they did actually seem to bond a bit. 

I love how violent and conniving everyone is and no one even bothers to hide it. Everyone's response to the stableman and his wife being killed was basically "ugh, we're eating" except for Henri, who just lost it. Catherine's entourage is great, every great queen needs a poisoner and a magician on staff just in case you need some loose ends tied up. They're all loyal to her as her survival means their survival, but are also upfront about being quite sketchy. 

Fun seeing Colm Meany as the king, who's also pretty awful but still comes off as rather likable and is clearly fond of Catherine. 

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On 9/19/2022 at 7:29 AM, greekmom said:

Also, breaking the 4th wall was a great addition to the show.

I'm usually not a big fan of this but it works really well for this!  

I wasn't expecting much and fully anticipated watching part of the first episode and never bothering to go back...I was wrong.  Really enjoying this one so far.  

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On 9/19/2022 at 6:31 AM, Scarlett45 said:

I just think she wouldve tried EVERYTHING else she could think of to work on her relationship with Henri before she thought of such a thing.

That’s closer to what really happened but I loved the drama in the episode.

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A bit behind on watching so I'm only caught up through this episode (E2) and am still loving it. 

Scrappy, younger Catherine continues to have me rooting for her, even if I did think the bit with the stablehand was so unnecessary and RL Catherine would never. Not at this stage anyway. I loved her getting one up on Diane, who I absolutely detest (I hate this version so much more than the one in Reign and cannot understand Henri's fascination with her unless it's all mommy issues). 

Older, wiser Catherine slays me as well, particularly at the nonplussed and non-surprised look on her face when revealing the tray of 💩.

I will never look at reading the Bible the same way. Ever. Again.

Louis is an absolute psycho and I'm finding zero redeemable qualities in him. Henri, I think, can be salvaged. 

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Catherine: What is it?

Rahima: You punished me unjustly and then chose me to wait on you, when so many others wanted the position.

Catherine: Did I punish you unjustly? Whilst I admire someone willing to make the best of their situation, don't ever steal from me again. Do you understand? Next time you want something... just ask.

Rahima: Yes, ma'am.

Nice after the fact justification, but Catherine didn't notice the missing orange until after she had Rahima thrown in the cell, so Catherine wasn't even intentionally teaching Rahima the lesson not to get caught. Catherine smiled when she saw the missing orange.

The theft of the orange was probably why Catherine appointed Rahima as Catherine's maid. Mentoring Nathalie would have wasted both Catherine and Nathalie's time.

Catherine was mentoring Rahima and Rahima's first lesson was "[N]ever to trust a single soul."

What a mentor!

Edited by Constantinople
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I love old Catherine and young Catherine. Old Catherine knew she stole the orange. I'm glad because there's no way she would miss that. 

I love young Catherine's pleading with the King. That was an incredible scene. Diane clearly hated it. I also loved Catherine repeating Diane's words back to her at the end about how being great being a widow is. Diane clearly never thought of that. Which isn't a bad plan. He's the second son so it's not like he matters as much as she thinks he does. How it would secure Catherine's position easily while Diane's would be gone. She clearly didn't think of that either.

Diane, you might be good at playing games but you've never played against a Medici. Catherine's out of your league.

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