Knightfall: Equal Before God | Season 2, Episode 4 | Air Date: April 15, 2019 | Rating: 9/11 |
*SPOILERS AHEAD* Episode recaps (with random bits of commentary) occur in this space, so if your mind’s not ready to know what happened in this week’s episode of Knightfall, avert your eyes. Now.
Ready? Let’s roll.
The brothers of Chartres Temple acquire new members and are put to the test, Landry faces an old friend and King Philip…well, Philip officially declares war on the Templars.
After Talus’ redemptive strike on Landry’s soul last week, it’s final exam time for him and his fellow initiates medieval fight club-style. Midway through their graduation ceremony Gabriel, a wounded Leper Knight from the Order of Saint Lazarus – fellow soldiers of Christ – arrives with news of Pope Boniface’s death/murder and he and his brothers having been attacked by Gawain and King Philip’s men while en route to Rome with the news of Boniface. He was the lone survivor. Landry and Gabriel have 20 years of friendship between them and Landry advocates for directly confronting Philip, but the temple is divided on a course of action. Finally, Temple Master De Molay decides to wait for word from Rome and assigns Landry, Tancrede, Talus, Vasant, Rhone, and Kelton to escort Gabriel safely back to his temple.
But the trip and the episode are accompanied by Rhone’s open display of loathing for lepers, as a whole, due to his sister death. It’s a hard good versus leprosy being a form of God’s punishment for the afflicted’s inherent evil-line of hatred that Rhone takes. It’s also a humble Gabriel not shy about calling out Rhone’s lacking a “clean heart.” We see where this is going.
NOT SO FAKE NEWS
King Philip is impatient to unleash his men on the Templars but DeNogaret reminds him that training a fighting force to take them down takes time. But Philip’s patience is wearing thin and even though he still calls Gawain a “cripple” and a “gimp” he recognizes Gawain as the strongest weapon against Landry and the Templars that he has, especially when Gawain asserts his command and authority over the men by not tolerating any disrespect and handily kicking one’s ass. His display even intrigues Princess Isabella.
Since word has spread about a band of Templar Knights murdering children, DeNogaret thinks these rumors are perfect fodder for an anti-Templar smear campaign and suggests a hearing where the accusations can be heard by all and in public. Of course, Philip agrees to it: how could infant-murdering not turn citizens against the Templars?
But what’s obvious is that DeNogaret believes it to be fake, but useful news: has no idea that Prince Louis and his men are the ones murdering children dressed as Templars per Philip’s orders. This clearly registers on DeNogaret’s face when Louis has to physically restrain and fake their way out of the room when a mother recognizes him as the one who murdered her child. Apparently, Philip’s trust in DeNogaret only goes so far. Awkward.
Philip is informed that one leper knight survived Gawain’s ambush, so he commands Gawain to eliminate the Order of Saint Lazarus and their allies. Fortunately, today their allies are the Knights Templar.
When Team Templar arrives at the Church of Saint Lazarus, they are welcomed and fed as fellow Christians and knights do even though Kelton, Vasant and especially Rhone are a little apprehensive being surrounded by lepers. It’s a moment of calm amongst them all that finds Talus and Landry having a heart-to-heart about baby Eve and fatherhood. And about protecting her
But the peace comes to an end when Gawain and his men arrive. Even though outnumbered by Gawain’s forces, the Templars and leper knights suffer casualties but successfully fend them off with a little fire ingenuity. Lydia (a leper serving at the church) impales a knight to save Kelton and Rhone does the same for Gabriel: clean hearts begin to form. At one point Landry and Gawain momentarily come face to face and sword to sword again: it’s a to-be-continued showdown as the burning church comes down around them.
In the end, comes the resolution that they are officially at war with King Philip. Kelton, Rhone, and Vasant return to Chartres, Talus heads off to warn other temples, at Talus’ command Tancrede takes Landry to see his daughter while he still has the chance (before the impending hell breaks loose), and Gawain returns to Paris with news of Landry.
- Landry and Tancrede confiding in and commiserating with one another about impossible dreams and desires.
- During a day trip, Isabella and Princess Margaret do some sisterly bonding over marital and queenly concerns. Eye-opening, to say the least.
- Nice to know that whatever emotional/psychotic break that Prince Louis suffered (while imprisoning/confessing to the mother and pouring out the blood of the child he killed) did him some good: at least he can perform in bed with his wife again. (all together, now: Eww)
- Just when we’re getting used to this ultra-fatherly Talus, he calls someone a halfwit. Cool.
- “The man that was banished no longer exists. Landry, you have been reborn.” (Talus)
- “We’re not accustomed to spilling blood in the house of Christ.” (Gabriel)
- “We’ve always fought side by side: tonight we’ll die side by side.”(Landry)
- “We praise God with clean hearts. I suggest you learn to do the same.” (Gabriel)
- “Can’t catch what I already have.” (Lydia)
With this episode both tense and intense, we are officially on the direct path to the Knights Templar destruction by way of conspiracy, intrigue and family dysfunction. So far Knightfall is weaving plenty of entertaining factors into the storytelling and I would be remiss in not offering cheers to Genevieve Gaunt for her Princess Isabella: Gaunt is giving her character a healthy dose of sly royal pragmaticism that’s cynical yet supportive…and a little delicious. She fits right in with this loving family.
Next week’s episode: “Road to Chartres”
All Photos: Larry Horricks & José Sarmento Matos courtesy of HISTORY