Thread: Reign - The CW
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Old October 18 2013, 04:43 AM   #8
Allyn Gibson
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Re: Reign - The CW

That was an unholy mess, wasn't it?

As I said above, I expected something about as historically accurate as The Tudors, which is to say "Not historically accurate at all." It was sumptuous to look at and slickly made, though it occasionally felt claustrophobic in terms of sets and cast, due no doubt to budgetary limitations. And for the twenty minutes of the episode that played like a PG-13 rated Tudors, it held my interest and I thought it generally worked and had potential.

Those other twenty minutes? Boy-crazy handmaidens? A plucky heroine who defies the conventions of the times to assert her independence? A broody and indecisive male lead? An alt-rock soundtrack that has nothing to do with the era and everything to do with pushing emotional buttons? In no sane world do those twenty minutes belong in the same program as the machinations of Catherine de Medici.

The tonal shifts would give an MPD sufferer whiplash. I can imagine the elevator pitch for Reign -- "A Tudors-esque historical drama for the CW audience" -- and that's certainly what the first episode delivers. The twenty minutes that had me going "Whiskey tango foxtrot?!?" hit that demographic square on the head, while the twenty minutes that I enjoyed no doubt baffled the CW demo.

I don't even want to imagine what my old history professor at Richmond, John Rilling, would think of Reign. Probably give the poor man an aneurysm. He had a hard enough time with Elizabeth and Shakespeare in Love.

I'll stick with it for a few episodes. I'll stick with it longer if it plays more like The Tudors and less like the standard CW series. Give me something to watch before Elementary.
"When David Marcus cited the great thinkers of history -- "Newton, Einstein, Surak" -- Newt Gingrich did not make his list." -- 24 January 2012
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