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'The Musketeers' recap: Never mess with a fighting nun

Season 1 | Episode 9 | “Knight Takes Queen” | Aired Aug 17, 2014

Last week’s episode felt like a low point in the season, but the penultimate episode of this first season brings back all the things I love about this show: action, adventure, witty banter and Aramis charm! No one can resist the Aramis charm, as we soon find out.

Queen Anne is at the lake for what appears to be some sort of ritual. She’s with her handmaids, and they do some sort of ceremony where they throw flowers at her while she walks down to the lake. Is she about to commit suicide by drowning? Nope, she’s just walking in to immerse herself in the peaceful setting.

Up above, the Musketeers guard her and use their spare time to practice fighting. Athos and Porthos take on D’Artagnan and proceed to make fun of him at the same time.

D’Artagnan: For the last time, mind the uniform!
Athos: It’s too shiny, too new.
Porthos: It looks like your mom dressed you.

Aramis, meanwhile, is pleased to be out in the woods and enjoys the peaceful setting and the chirping.

Back at the palace, the King entertains guests on his own: the Count Mellendorf and his daughter, Charlotte. The King spends most of his time flirting with Charlotte and compares her to Anne. He decides he will take them on a hunting trip and leave the Cardinal in charge back at home. Due to his drinking, he keeps talking bad about Anne while praising Charlotte. The Cardinal says that the Queen has many remarkable qualities, but the King retorts that bearing children isn’t one of them. What a jerk.

The Queen has being going to the lake in hopes that the waters will help with fertility treatments, but the King says she’s been going there for years and nothing’s happened. He goes on and on about how Charlotte would make the perfect wife, and it’d be better for everyone if Anne were dead. Charlotte would give him the money and sons that he wanted. Then he passes out. Ugh, I knew I didn’t like him.

Cut to the countryside, where a man arrives on horseback and is summoned into a barn. He pulls out his weapons and proceeds to go on a killing rampage against five large … rats. Those things were disgustingly huge. It appears that he’s the local exterminator. Milady then appears and tells the man, Gallagher (Lochlann Ó Mearáin), that she has a job for him—something better than killing pesky rodents.

Back to the lake: Aramis has gotten tired of the birds and the peacefulness.

Aramis: I hate these birds and their *whistles.*
Athos: I thought this was paradise?
Aramis: That was two days ago. I’m bored!

He goes to shoot down the noisemakers when another gunshot is heard. One of the Queen’s maids has been killed. It appears it was mistaken identity, as she had borrowed the Queen’s hood on her way to the lake, and real target is the Queen. Rushing to protect her, the Musketeers take her and ride away to escape the assassins led by Gallagher.

What follows is probably one of my favorite sequences from the entire show. There’s a shirtless Aramis, burnt food and joking.


D’Artagnan and Porthos ride back to Paris to get reinforcements, while Athos and Aramis (which I will refer to as “Double A” in the rest of this recap) take the Queen to the monastery for safety.

The nuns reluctantly allow their doors to be closed once they realize that it’s the Queen of France they are giving sanctuary to. Double A see the assassins waving a white flag and decide to send out Athos for talks. Gallagher tells him to hand over the Queen and let everyone else leave. Athos is all—to paraphrase—”Yeah, right. Why would I do that?” when Gallagher pulls out his gun and kills HIS own man. Clearly he doesn’t care about anyone else right now. Athos calls him out for being a solider and saying that he needs to leave or be killed. Gallagher doesn’t care and says that everyone is in the convent is now at risk of being killed.

On the road, Porthos and D’Artagnan manage to shoot down several of Gallagher’s men and discover a strange tattoo on one of them. Plus, they find a promissory note from someone in Paris.

Athos tells the nuns that they need to go in order to be safe. They refuse to leave and want to help defend the convent. Aramis follows one of the nuns downstairs and discovers a still. There they are producing brandy, which tastes remarkably like the kind his father used to make. He comments on this and the nun tells him that it should be, because it is the same recipe as his father’s. He gives her a strange look and calls her Isabelle, but then they are interrupted by the Queen.

Porthos and D’Artagnan return to the garrison to find that the rest of the Musketeers are guarding the King at the hunting party. The only people who are left are Captain Treville, who has an injured shoulder, the cook, the stable boy—basically all the ragtag members of the party.

Milady approaches the Cardinal, who asks her if her task has been accomplished. They are interrupted by Treville with P&D, telling him that the Queen has been attacked but is currently safe. The Cardinal tries to hide a look of surprise to hear that she is still alive. He says that it’ll take several hours to get the rest of the men back from the hunting party. Once they leave, he is VERY angry at Milady and tells her that if Gallagher fails, he will kill her.

Aramis: My parents always hoped that I’d end up in a place like this.
Athos: They wanted you to become a nun?

The battle begins and the women pray, while Double A do their best to defend. We quickly to see that the two of them alone cannot defend on their own. The Mother Superior has had enough and calls on the rest of the nuns to help.

Treville, Porthos and D’Artagnan go to the money lender to find the records of the promissory note. They arrive and discover the money lender is dead. D’Artagnan smells jasmine and starts hunting for the owner of the scent, but he’s called away just in time, as Milady was THISCLOSE to him with a dagger. The trio find out that the note had been commissioned by the Count, but the beneficiary didn’t sign their name. The tattoo that had been seen earlier is in the records. Treville explains that it was the sign of a Catholic soldier expelled from Ireland. He later tells the Cardinal that they know that it was a woman who did it, but they don’t know who it was.

He is even more furious at Milady for letting all these small details slip. She says there is no way the would be able to trace it back to him. He gives her something to put in the Count’s room.

Aramis tells Isabelle, who now goes by Sister Helene, that he had searched for her. She was the woman he was supposed to have married. She had gotten pregnant, but then lost the baby and disappeared into the convent. She tells him he was never meant for marriage since he craves excitement and adventure. She was the one who told her father not to tell Aramis where she had gone. After all these years, she realizes they’ve both found what they were searching for in life and would have made each other miserable. Then the bad guys manage to break into the cellar. They shoot Sister Helene, and she dies in Aramis’ arms.

Later that night, the Queen can’t sleep and finds Aramis staring silently into the fireplace. She tells him that she had gotten pregnant early on in her marriage, but then she lost the baby. It’s been six years since that happened, and she still hasn’t forgotten the loss. She tells him that she doubts that Sister Helene or he will ever forget about that baby, and it’s OK to mourn. Aramis starts to doubt himself, and Anne goes to comfort him. They kiss and then he carries her off to bed. It’s clear they’ve been waiting for this for a while …

The next morning, Athos comes in to start preparations for the day’s defenses and walks in on Aramis still with the Queen. He backs out quickly.

Aramis: About what you saw—
Athos: I didn’t see anything, because I’ve been in here all morning, and so I couldn’t have possibly seen anything, you understand?
Aramis: Well, these walls are too thick, the garrison will be here by the—
Aramis: I thought you said you didn’t see anything?

The two agree to not talk about it at the moment, as there are more important things at hand, such as trying to figure out whether Gallagher’s men have been tunneling their way in during the night. The Queen and Aramis have no time for morning-after awkwardness, as she wants to stay and help, not go hide with the nuns. The Mother Superior is also ready and armed to fight. Gallagher’s men make their way into the tunnel, and Double A needs to defend the Queen and fight at the same time.

They quickly deplete almost all their ammunition and are down to two bullets with at least twice as many men still out there, but the rest of the Musketeers arrive just in the nick of time. They recruited anyone who was left at the garrison to at least look like they have more men. They take out the rest of Gallagher’s men; he runs, but is eventually shot down by Athos.

In his belongings they find a box containing some money, but even more important, Athos recognizes that it is from Milady. He tells the rest of them that she works for the Cardinal.

Back at the palace, the King has returned and is informed of what has happened. He’s furious and overcome with worry. When evidence is found in the Count’s belongings showing that he was the one behind the plot to kill the Queen, the King orders him and his daughter to thrown into the Bastille. The King frets that he doesn’t know what he would do if something happened to Anne. Sure, only NOW do you care about her.

When the royal couple is finally reunited, it seems awkward and staged. If anything, the King looks more happy that the Queen is back than she does. The Cardinal says that he has gotten a full signed confession from the Count, and everyone applauds him. The Queen, however, catches Aramis’ eye, and her expression displays doubt. The King, however, praises the Cardinal, who is now held in the highest regard by everyone—except the Musketeers. Athos walks over to him and tells him that he doesn’t think the Count acted alone, and he knows about a woman who helped him. He adds that he will find her and whoever she works for and bring them to justice.

Knight takes bishop. BOOM.

I like this kind of Musketeers episode best; they are doing what they are actually supposed to be doing, which is protecting royalty. There’s the witty banter, which I felt had been missing for the past few weeks. Plus there’s the pairing of Aramis and Athos, which I think plays perfectly: Athos’ straight man to Aramis’ romantic soul brings out the best in both. That pairing could be a spin-off and I’d be happy.

I know I complained last week about D’Artagnan and Constance’s affair. Same thing happened again this week with Aramis and Anne. I don’t know if it’s because I like these characters better or if it’s not implied that they will continue the relationship—or because the King is not a likable person—but I prefer this pairing and the chemistry between the two actors.

Next week’s episode is the season finale. It’s public knowledge that Peter Capaldi will not be returning next season because of Doctor Who, so what are they doing to do with Cardinal Richelieu? Will they kill him off? Send him off to Rome or somewhere else? Give him a change of heart? Anyone have any guesses?

The Musketeers airs on Sundays 9/8C on BBC America. 

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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