The Musketeers S01 Ep07 – A Rebellious Woman

Ninon's trial

Honestly, I can’t decide which episode of The Musketeers is my favourite so far. All of them are very good and I think this says a lot about the series as a whole. This week’s episode features some touchy topics: the equality between men and women, women’s right to education, and witchcraft. To put it briefly, this episode is mainly about feminism.

Our feminist pioneer is Comtesse Ninon de Larroque, a beautiful daughter of the nobility who tries to offer women an education. Apart from being ravishing, Ninon is a liberal and enlightened woman whose fortune is at hand for the Cardinal. Following the death of a young girl who was attending her classes and the discovery of others hidden in her chambers, Ninon is accused of witchcraft and nearly burned at the stake. Fortunately, the Cardinal decides not kill her after all. In fact, it is her fortune that he needs, not her corpse. The Comtesse doesn’t exist anymore. She is dead in the eyes of society, stripped of her belongings and forced to live outside Paris. This is one of the episodic characters that I really like. Thanks to her, some girls have the opportunity to learn not only how to read and write, but to learn even more: the movement of the stars, the secrets of their bodies, and so on. Ninon truly is an inspirational woman, clearly ahead of her time. However, this rebellious nature of hers doesn’t come with caution. You can’t defy the Cardinal (who obviously is a very powerful man) and expect him to do nothing against you (especially when you’re rich). This is Ninon’s biggest mistake and it does cost her life from a point of view. You can’t be rebellious and careless because you’ll be silenced easily.

Aramis fights with a bookPutting aside the main storyline, some love stories evolve and others end as soon as they start. Firstly, let’s talk about Ninon and Athos. One of the things that I really like about her is that she openly flirts with him in front of her “students” and his fellow musketeers. Ninon is very self-confident. She even tells him that she saw him often at court and thought he was very handsome. Honestly, I was a bit shocked (in a good way) when I watched this scene. The same goes for Athos. I don’t think he expected Ninon to be so outspoken. He even forgets what he has to say at one point. They later kiss (Ninon makes the first move, of course) and Athos returns for dinner the same evening. Just when I was eager to see how this first date would go, Athos took her to…the morgue. I was like, “That’s a hell of a first date. Way to go, Athos!”.

All in all, I think Athos was really getting into her. He almost swore to her that he knew nothing of the Red Guards that ransacked her house (by the way, this fight scene was very entertaining – Athos and Aramis using books as weapons and Aramis checking what book he was fighting with), he believed he was deceived by her and this hurt his feelings (that’s why he was so hard on her and Aramis pointed this out very well), he begged the Cardinal not to kill her and the look on his face (all soaked) when Ninon left…my God, that was heartbreaking. For a moment, I almost forgot that Ninon was an episodic character, because I really liked them as a couple and she could have been the woman who could bring him peace and make him happy. Athos really deserves it after all he’s been through.

Constance and d'Artagnan make out

Now, let’s talk about Constance and d’Artagnan. Until the end of the episode, there were just some short scenes featuring them, and nothing interesting happened. To be honest, I was expecting to see “NEXT TIME” and hear the theme music, but guess what? They kissed! Well, actually they made out. D’Artagnan was so cute when he told her “I love you!”: apart from the fact that you could tell his feelings were genuine, he was almost afraid to finally say it. I think he was a tad afraid of Constance’s reaction, that perhaps she would reject him. I wonder what will happen with these two in the next episodes.

Last but not least, one of my favourite couples: Aramis and Queen Anne. Until this episode, they had only three scenes together. Yes, I counted them! In this episode, we are reminded of the attraction between them. As she is “facing a hideous death”, Aramis gives Ninon the rosary. Some fans say that he gives it too freely so it doesn’t seem to really matter to him. If you Aramis and Annehave a romantic nature and you are a die-hard fan of this couple, then you might see things this way. To my mind, Aramis gives her the rosary because he really believes that it can help her, that his God won’t abandon her (but I admit I was a bit angry with Aramis too; I couldn’t help it). However, I was so relieved when Ninon returned it to him. The Queen notices that Ninon is wearing her gift to Aramis (she can’t help it and turns to Aramis). My God, she looks so irritated and hurt. I felt so sorry for her. It’s Ninon all over again. First, Louis embarrasses her in front of everyone when he says “And Ninon is so very pretty, I could listen to her nonsense all day.“ (so tactless). Now, Aramis offers this precious gift to Ninon (and Anne thinks it was meant to be special). Her inquiry about the Cardinal is just a pretext. She has to confront him, because he hurt her feelings and she must know if Ninon is his mistress or not (she is definitely jealous). Aramis reveals his religious nature and Anne asks him to forgive her (I didn’t see that coming!) so she now knows that he was just being kind to a woman in need. And that’s all. Their smiles are so heartwarming and basically say “no hard feelings”. I can’t wait to see what happens in ep. 9 (check out the stills if you haven’t done so already)!

Athos and Ninon

Oh my, I almost forgot about Milady! She’s back after a pretty long time and she is once again in the Cardinal’s service. The scene where Athos realizes it’s her that testifies against Ninon is very tense and I must say that I didn’t know what to expect from Athos. Tom Burke gives an incredible performance in this scene. He is at the same time terrified, shocked, and enraged, and then he goes on a rampage. From the promo we learn that they will face each other again in the next episode and I’m sure it will be very interesting.

Peter Capaldi does a great job in this episode too. The poisoning scene is a bit upsetting, but very well acted (Louis proves to be very childish once again – he begs the Cardinal not to die and Treville has a hard time getting him off the Cardinal). The funny thing is that Aramis is the first one who rushes to help him (you guys remember Adele, right?).

To conclude, this episode is absolutely great and I can’t wait for the next one!

Did you enjoy it as much as I did? Let us know what you think!