Knightfall: And Certainly Not The Cripple | Season 1, Episode 7 | Air Date: January 17, 2018 | Rating: 9/11 |
*SPOILERS AHEAD* If you didn’t know that this space is where episode recaps (with random bits of commentary) occur, now you do. So, if your mind’s not ready to know exactly what happened in this week’s episode of Knightfall, avert your eyes. Now. You’ve been warned.
Ready? Let’s roll.
A Mother’s Love:
It’s safe to assume that Queen Elena is far from over what happened to her beloved son, Prince Lluis: she and Catalonia have taken up arms against Queen Joan’s homeland, Navarre, in order to provoke France into a response. But Elena is merciful to the captured leader of Navarre’s forces: she gives him his life, but takes his hands as insurance that he will never take up arms against her again. Ouch…literally.
After word of Catalonia’s attack reaches King Philip in Paris, mustering troops and war preparations begin. Joan (whose pregnancy has been publically announced) asserts her will to take part in defending her people, but – as one would expect during those ultra-manly 14th century times – Joan’s input and will are scoffed at. With her irritation being chalked up to hormones and being sent to her room like a child, a defiant Joan sneaks off to Navarre in advance to meet with and reassure Navarre’s governor and nobles, hoping to effect some peace before things get out of hand. Of course, that hope is dashed when – courtesy of Elena – a sack of “mercy” (read: hacked off hands of Navarrean hostages) is delivered to Joan’s feet. Joan’s next move: request a parley.
Hell hath no fury like a mother …who has lost her son.
The Devil on Gawain’s Shoulder:
I’ve mentioned before that absolutely nothing good comes from De Nogaret and Gawain crossing paths. This week’s Exhibit A: when De Nogaret, the at-large and on the run nefarious one, locates Gawain and chats him up about finding the Grail. Adding fuel to the fire is Landry’s heart-to-heart with Gawain about his affair with a married woman, which a mortified Gawain shares with De Nogaret. Exhibit B, De Nogaret – still managing to elude capture by hiding in plain sight – challenges if the not-so-holy Landry would be so kind as to allow Gawain to be healed by the Grail, should they find it. Unfortunately, when Gawain puts that question to Landry directly, he refuses citing the Grail’s purpose as being to heal the world, not individuals.
This does not sit well with Gawain.
Parsifal and Roland Sitting By a Tree…:
Since Parsifal can’t read, Pierre deciphered the message Adelina took from Roland: “I’m in Paris. I need more men. IV”
Roland (still languishing in a Paris Temple cell as Parsifal questions him with his fists about who he’s working for) is set to be extradited to a Temple in Genoa for yet another murder, but not on Parsifal’s watch. Donning armor, Parsifal pretends to be the knight tasked with transporting Roland to Genoa and sidetracks into the woods in order to finally get some answers. Roland, being hardcore, refuses to cooperate …that is, until Parsifal buries his axe in his side. When Roland finally gives up the name, Parsifal is so horrified that he buries that same axe in Roland’s face which reinforces my theory that the History Channel truly does have a thing for objects going into/coming out of peoples’ faces and heads.
Back to the start:
Following Rashid’s guidance, Landry and Gawain arrive at the orphanage (the place where he first met Godfrey) only to find no Holy Grail and the orphanage’s burned remains: the result of a child’s errant candle, claims a mysterious woman. Disheartened, Landry considers perhaps God truly doesn’t want man to recover the Grail.
Those two terse words from Pope Boniface brought his meeting with Landry to an abrupt end as Landry tried in vain to explain the latest circumstances behind his search for the Grail: the orphanage, his abduction, turning Tancrede over to the Brotherhood of Light. Agitated, confused and sorely doubting where – as a Christian – Landry’s loyalties lie, Pope Boniface commands Landry to shut his search down and focus on being the Temple Master. The benevolent holy pope that we’ve come to know has left the building.
So we had a reveal of the most personal kind: more than just a clue to finding the Grail, our “mystery woman” is also Landry’s mother. A reveal made more consequential due to the emotional wound that Landry feels for not knowing his parents and possibly never knowing his child. In one moment of “A + B = C,” a casual conversation with a commoner leads De Nogaret to figure out that Landry is the father of Joan’s child: a fact he is sure to use with Philip. In another, after confiding in Pierre that he killed Roland and knows who the bad guy is, Parsifal realizes his mistake – but only after Pierre stabs and leaves him for dead. The enemy within and without, folks.
The friendship and brother bonds are reaching points of stretch or completely fray: Landry feels the weight of Tancrede’s absence, Gawain would sooner see Landry stripped of his robes and Philip will eventually be faced with the truth about his wife and the man he trusts above all others.
And mom’s outright fear for Landry? It seems that finding the Grail is about to unleash a whole other set of problems. Til next time…
- Welcome to our first Tancrede-free episode. Felt weird, didn’t it?
- If there’s one oddly consistent thing about this show, it’s how you can always see the actors’ breath in outdoor scenes. Gives a sense of how cold it truly was during filming.
- Apparently “submit to God” is Templar-speak for split someone’s face in half with an axe. Apparently.
- Flashbacks of Godfrey…thank you.
- What is it about De Nogaret that makes Gawain so readily spill his guts? Every. Single. Time.
- We were entertained by Landry and Philip’s adventures in not-quite-fight-club as even kings need to blow off a little steam. Last week we discovered that Philip could throw a punch; nice to know that he can take one (or three), as well.
- Nothing at all creepy about Gawain’s perfectly lovely chat with God descending into a psychotic break, right? Yeah, it was totally creepy.
- “In the end, it’s those closest to you who will betray you.” (King Philip to Landry)
- “You hate yourself more than you could ever hate me; your leg is the least of your problems.” (Landry to Gawain)
- “You’re feeding the wrong one. The black wolf and the white wolf: you’re feeding the wrong one.” (Landry’s mother)
- “Your chosen one is a vile sinner and, still, he can do no wrong.” (Gawain)
- “This cup has made madmen of us all.” (Landry)
Next week’s episode: “IV”