Reign Midseason Finale Recap: Proud Mary Keep on Burning

Reign Mary Francis Break Up

It’s a good thing Reign doesn’t return until Jan. 22, because we’re all going to need some time to process Mary’s heartbreaking decision on Thursday’s midseason finale.

“I believe that we should lead separate lives,” she told Francis at the bottom of the hour, after tracking down her rapists and burning them all alive. Realizing that revenge isn’t enough, that she’ll always blame Francis for what happened to her, Mary decided to be his wife “in name only.”

Francis was devastated at first (“I would do anything for you, Mary”), but his sadness soon turned to rage during a visit to his now-prisoner Narcisse: “From now on, you belong to me. You will do and say as I command. … You’re my puppet now.” Yes!

Reign Mary Francis Break Up

So, who might Mary choose as her first post-Francis suitor? I think we can all put our money on Condé, whose letter — explaining that he couldn’t marry Claude because he loved Mary — finally reached the queen’s inbox this week. Of course, now that his brother Antoine has arrived to pressure Condé into turning on the royals, any potential romance is doomed from the start. (Have fun with that!)

In other French Court relationship news…

GOODBYE FOR NOW | Is there a man alive more noble than Leith Bayard? If so, don’t tell me, I don’t think I could handle it. When Francis’ men threw Lord Castleroy into the dungeon this week, suspecting his connection to the attack on Mary, Leith cashed in his I.O.U. to free Greer’s husband. Nobler still, he urged them both to leave French Court and never return! Fortunately, Greer convinced Castleroy it would be best if he travelled alone, which means there’s still hope for Leith, Greer and their many long-suffering fans.

Reign Mary Francis Break UpTHE KING HAS RETURNED | Not since the first season of American Horror Story have I seen ghost-sex as hot as Henry — yes, that Henry — and Catherine’s this week. It was a little curious, though, that he needed her to say, “I want you back,” unless he was just an *NSYNC fan way ahead of his time. Either way, it felt very invitational, and that’s never good when dealing with a freaking spirit.

ROYAL MESS | Though I don’t suspect any true Reign fan would ever ship #Clash, it’s clear that Kenna is starting to worry about Claude’s interest in her husband. The princess approached Bash this week in a drunken, feverish stupor — thanks to a little something Catherine slipped into her soup — and practically fell all over him. Truly bad form. But while I don’t want to see anything bad happen to Bash, it would be nice to see something happen to him; he’s been way too much of a background player this season.

Your thoughts on Reign‘s game-changing midseason finale? Are you crushed over Mary and Francis’ split? And what’s up with the ghost sex? Drop a comment with your thoughts and theories below.


Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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37 Comments
  1. SUSO says:

    It is both sad and infuriating that the writers chose to use Mary’s rape as a simple way to split the couple up for the time being. It could have worked, but the way it was portrayed felt cheap and very out of character for all concerned.

    • Ian says:

      I don’t think that’s precisely fair. The rape is clearly affecting Mary in a lot of ways that have nothing to do with her relationship with Francis. I think they’re going to explore how changed she truly is.

      • SUSO says:

        I fully agree with you in theory, and think that could be a strong story engine, but obviously the way it was portrayed tonight did not live up to that idea. It was cheap. And the fact that the chatter is mostly about who Mary will get together with next, not how she will survive the trauma, indicates that they are showing their hand concerning the break-up too obviously.

        • Ellie says:

          I don’t know if the show is going to push Mary and Conde together like Andy seems to think. The reaction I saw when she read Conde’s letter was more like, “God, I just went through something traumatic. Why can’t these men just leave me alone?”
          I’d like to see Conde and Francis try to comfort her, with her rejecting them both. It’s more realistic, especially with how Francis has been a giant, secretive tool this season.
          The only bright spot in the rape story is Mary’s scenes with Catherine. I love it when they work together, because it’s a really fun dynamic. And now with this storyline, you get to see Catherine acting as counsellor and mother to her daughter-in-law. I think through her will be the only way for Mary to come back to loving Francis again before he dies, like in Nostradamus’ vision.
          Speaking of Nostradamus, will he ever return? I miss him. Maybe he can help Catherine with her ghost problems.

    • claire says:

      I agree too, they really could have used this epsiode to turn things around for Francis and Mary. I was watching hoping at the end they would at least be able to agree to work together on fixing things. They did the exact opposite and I think that was a mistake. I am going to see how the next episode goes in January and if it still looks like things are going to get worse for them I will stick with reading recaps only too. I just cannot watch anymore while wanting something good to happen to Francis and Mary’s relationship and instead they keep getting more obstacles. There are plenty of other couples in the show. Let’s see them have some obstacle and give Francis and Mary a break. At least remind them and the viewers of why we loved the Francis and Mary dynamic in the forst place.

      • gerry says:

        I agree, Mary and Francis deserve some happiness, and all the writers have done is push them away from each other, Lola’s pregnancy, was more than enough. How about some happiness for them, I know nothing brings fans like drama, but I have had enough, if they continue to ruin their lives, I won’t watch either.

        • bubbly says:

          I agree with you 100%, maybe the writers are going to do something similar to the beauty and the beast writers. meaning that they spilt them up for awile so us as veiwer can see both characters grow inderviuals so, when they get back together they are as strong as ever.

      • Zoraida says:

        I agree Mary and Francis have barely had a chance for a real marriage there had been all kinds of crap thrown at them n it getting really annoying they are one of the main reasons I watch this show I love the show but they are what bring me back something good needs to happen for them like now or I simply can’t watch anymore they deserve happiness n nothing but hurt is what’s happening :(

      • susan says:

        I agree with you I hate to see Mary and Francis apart. He is about to die like I think they should try to work things out between each other but if Marys love is the cure then they need to be together and try to have another child if Mary keeps having an affair with conde I’m done watching reign I rather watch something that actually has a happy ending with the two main characters.

  2. Ian says:

    I’d been waiting for the Mary/Conde throughway for episodes now, but of course it’s doomed. She’s destined to be with Francis, as we all know. Still, at least I’m sure they’ll get to make love before it all falls apart and she gets over blaming Francis, unlike when they baited the Mash shippers forever – and then didn’t give us any payoff at all.

    And I’m so truly torn for Greer. Now THIS is a real love triangle. She’s got 2 great guys who love her, and I don’t know what she should do. The way the story’s been crafted though, with her married to Castleroy now, would imply that her and Leith are endgame. She’s had such touching development with Castleroy though, so it’s bittersweet either way. The writers have outdone themselves.

  3. cyrano says:

    They are truly messing up this show. It was not Castletoy involved with the rape, it was Narcisse.
    Wonder what Lola would do about Narcisse bieng a prisoneR?
    Ugh I’m so over Reign now. Just gonna read recaps. Maybe scandal 4B mite be better…

  4. Alyse says:

    I’m probably in the minority but I like Mary and Conde. I also am in love with Leith, he is seriously the best guy ever. I really hope her and Greer get together. Bash needs more screen time, he is such a background character this season.

  5. claire says:

    They should have used her rape and the fact that Francis finally told her the truth about Narcisse to benefit their relationship. They could have put their relationship at least a little back on track through this episode. Instead they keep pulling them further and further apart. One of the only reasons I watch the show is to see some of the team work Mary and Francis had in season one. Now that Mary defeated the people who tortured her and Francis defeated who was torturing him they could put the pieces back together and work together like they did in season one. They were a good team in season one. They worked together and communicated together. You would think now that they are married and king and queen they would be an even better team. They could have just one stable couple in the show so why not be the King and Queen. Francis and Mary have had enough trouble in their marraige. From the day they got married Lola was pregnant, then had her baby, then right after that Francis is black mailed, Mary loses her baby, and then Mary is raped. I am ready to see them have a little happiness as a married couple. With no secrets and working together as a team. I think that dynamic of watching them work together as a powerful couple is great.

    • ... says:

      The whole point of the strife between Francis and Mary is that the crown gets in the way of happiness. For anybody, not just them. The poignancy and sadness that frames their relationship comes from them probably having a happy, quiet life if they weren’t born of royal blood. However, their lineage decided their fate long before the pressures and circumstances of power grew to be too much for them.

      • Lynn says:

        Of course, but there is only so much unhappiness I can take. Episode after episode it just gets worse with no improvement in sight. Who wants to watch all gloom and despair with no payoff in sight whatsoever?

  6. Lorena says:

    Oh please, please don’t take my greer x castleroy away from me.

  7. Carla Krae says:

    People, it’s not realistic for a raped woman to draw closer to her husband! She’s traumatized. It takes time (an therapy) for any woman to rejoin a relationship she’s in when the attack happens and a lot of relationships still don’t survive. This soon, it’s perfectly normal that Mary is isolating herself from any person that doesn’t feel 100% safe.

    • Mehvash says:

      my only beef with this is that why discuss who Mary’s post Francis suitor will be? shouldn’t be about Mary really truly moving forward. Yea conde is waiting in the wings but she’s been traumatized..i’ve never been through something like this but i can’t imagine she’s just going to be jumping into bed with the next dude. a Long game plan would show her really trying to find herself again before she even entertained the idea of being around another man…just my 2 cents.

    • Lynn says:

      I don’t think they meant drawing closer to Francis in a sexual way though. Now that Mary finally knows that Narcisse blackmailed Francis (but not that Narcisse would have charged her & Catherine for regicide also though), viewers were hoping that Francis & Mary could work on putting their relationship back together, not necessarily hoping in bed.

  8. Indie says:

    What Mary went through could never have brought Mary and Francis together. There is so much hatred, anger, shame and fear brewing inside of her that no one can ever understand. Putting the blame on Francis is a subconscious coping mechanism, it directs all those malicious feelings towards someone whom she can lash out to and push away (sort of like a release valve). It didn’t help much that her attacker was not sorry for what he did and went on to insult her even more. That revenge was not satisfactory at all for Mary, it left her feeling the same or even worse. This is a much more believable story line considering what she has gone through.
    I loved how Conde helped her kill her attackers. The way Conde looks at Mary says it all. I love Frary but I hope Mary and Conde hook up at some point. we cant waste good chemistry.
    Saying that, so Bash is completely over Mary now,how odd! and they never seem to have any scenes together.

    • Melissa says:

      I agree with your comments… ya to a Mary/Conde love… the way he looks at her, such good chemistry between the two!!

  9. Salvatore Lover says:

    I like Mary and Francis but am I the only one watching this show. Francis has been awful to Mary in the name of protecting her. If he told Mary the truth she could have helped him beat Narcisse instead of consulting her and then doing the exact opposite at every turn. The writers have been setting up this split for a while now, the quiet moments between Francis and Lola and Mary turning to Conde every time Francis boxed her out.
    I love Bash and want him to get more screen time I just pray they don’t use the incest storyline to do it not only is it gross but Claude is grating.

    • Lynn says:

      Francis has been awful to Mary, really? How about all those awful things Mary has said to Francis repeatedly in multiple episodes. Francis only tried to protect Mary’s life and got nothing but harsh words from Mary in return.

      • Debby says:

        I agree. I think Francis has shown deep love for Mary by being willing to sacrafice his life and his happiness in their marriage in order to keep her alive by keeping her in the dark so she could deny any knowledge of him killing Henry. And why didn’t he tell her when Narcisse said he could implicate her as well? My thought is because if bad things went down it would be easier to have Bash smuggle her out of the country. If she knew the whole story she would refuse to leave Francis.

  10. love says:

    Lola is a boring character actually. .I’m all for mary and conde in the meantime. .he’s a cutie..would’ve liked more of a love triangle btw mary Francis and lola but no.biring writers

  11. ninergrl6 says:

    Love Mary. Love Conde. Love Catherine. Love Claude. Love Leith. After what I thought was a slow start, season 2 has finally been hitting it’s stride in the past month. The Catholic/Protestant conflict is important from a history perspective, but Reign is at it’s best when it focuses in relationships rather than politics. I do wish Bash had more to do, though.

  12. Zoraida says:

    I’m disappointed in the split between Mary and Francis and of that becomes permanent I more than likly will not be watching anymore other then that it was extremely great I’m excited to see what is in store for narcisse but really hoping to see Mary n francis rekindle their relationship they haven’t been the same sence Mary miscarried I’m hoping things go a bit smoother for these two in the near future

  13. Daniella says:

    Yes to Mary and Conde. They have such amazing chemistry! He’s a breath of fresh air to the show. Francis, although I liked him, he is both a terrible king and husband. I’m not to disappointed that Francis dies.

  14. Ally Oop says:

    I binge-watched the entire first half of Season 2 this past weekend and I thought it was awesome. The only storyline I dislike is that of Catherine poisoning Claude and Henry returning–I have no desire to see that storyline play out. I actually like the addition of Claude to the show and hopefully she’s not dead. I am also enjoying Mary’s friendship with Conde. As a sidenote, Conde actually married Claude’s sister Margaret before eventually becoming the King of Navarre and later, France.

  15. hayley says:

    The return of the king is a good idea, his crazy thoughts and doings were quite entertaining! I also think the split between mary and francis changes things up abit. The lovey dovey relationship stuff bores me. Would be good to see mary back home (scotland) even for one episode, even though she has said she will stay in france for “her people” she is also the leader of scotland and would be interesting to see how the scots respond to her return. Anywho good show :)

  16. Vikki says:

    Season 2 is a total bomb for me and many True Reign fans who will ultimately discontinue to Watch

  17. valentinegirly says:

    Season 2 is a Total BOMB for True Reign Fans! It went from a GREAT Show to the WORST Show! I stopped watching

  18. susan says:

    I think that conde and Mary should stop seeing each other because Francis is so heart broken because of it and he might die because of it.

  19. susan says:

    I think that Mary and conde should stop seeing each other. Francis is heart broken because of it. He might die because of it