The most popular CW series have become known for their science fiction and fantasy stories, particularly the Arrowverse and staple series Supernatural. The network has dabbled in the genre of historical fiction in the past with dramas like Reign. Inspired by the life of Mary, Queen Of Scots, the series combined real moments in history with soap-opera-like fiction to create a compelling tale.
The network opted not to renew the series for a fifth season while the cast and crew were hard at work on the fourth. That resulted in some characters having their fates seen on screen, while others were left up to the imagination of the audience.
Updated on July 24th, 2021 by Amanda Bruce: Though Reign centered on the life of Queen Mary, there were a lot of characters important to her story unfolding in the series. The story might not have been entirely accurate for history buffs, but the depth of the characters meant fans wanted to see just where each of them ends up. Fans can still relive their endings on streaming sites as well.
Kenna actually leaves the series as the second season draws to a close. Initially one of Mary’s ladies in waiting, she becomes mistress to the king of France, then marries his illegitimate son. When their relationship falls apart, she has an affair with General Renauld. It’s that affair that leads to her leaving France altogether when she realizes she’s pregnant.
On her way through Sweden, Kenna meets a teenage prince and strikes up a conversation with him, agreeing to exchange letters with him and asking to visit after she helps with her “sister’s baby.” The implication is that Kenna finds herself another royal to help her secure her position in society, something Kenna struggles to do from the start. In a world where a woman’s place is determined by her relationship with her father or her husband, the ladies of Reign frequently end up stuck.
King Henry only appears steadily as a main character in the first season of the series. After that, he only appears in visions, dreams, and flashbacks. Despite that, Henry makes a lasting impression on the show. He’s the one who spurs many of the relationships into motion thanks to his need to be in control of everyone in the castle.
In his final days, he’s not in his right mind thanks to his own Bible having poison in its pages. That’s not what kills him though. Instead, it’s his own son, Francis, who kills him during a jousting match, though he does it in secret so no one finds out he decided to save the inhabitants of the castle (and the rest of the kingdom) from Henry’s wrath.
Considering his prime role as an antagonist – and then as Lady Lola’s husband, Narcisse gets a rather abrupt ending on the series. In fact, the audience doesn’t really get to know just what happens to him in the end.
The last significant time the audience spends with Narcisse involves him, a witch, and Catherine de Medici sharing a bed. That’s because the witch in question, Emmanuelle, wants to spend the night with the most powerful people she knows in order to give herself a very powerful child. It’s a strange way to close out Narcisse’s story since his ending has no real bearing on his connection to Mary or the monarchy.
Charles becomes the king of France after the death of Francis, though it’s not a role he’s really ready to take on. He spent most of his early appearances in the show trying to get out of his lessons and ignoring his brother’s advice.
Though Catherine fights very hard to keep her son on the throne, Charles doesn’t appreciate it. In the end, he and his brother Henri even completely ignore Catherine when she tries to explain why their plans to put France in motion against Spain won’t work. Catherine leaves Charles to rule France on his own, something that Emmanuelle tells her won’t work out in his favor as he isn’t destined to be king for long.
Initially, Bash is interested in Mary, but their match is not to be since Mary is slated to marry his brother – the next king of France. Bash ends up married to Kenna as a result of his father’s machinations but maintains a friendship with Mary. Once his marriage crumbles, however, his time on the show shrinks.
The last the audience sees of Bash is him deciding to travel with Mary when she wants to return to Scotland. There is, however, a character who pops up in season four that allows the audience to discover that Bash becomes a Druid in Scotland, and shares a prophecy with the man to bring to Mary, though the audience doesn’t get more detail than that.
The Queen of France before Mary, Catherine causes a lot of problems for a lot of people. She schemes to make sure her children are taken care of, which is probably a good idea considering all of the violence that befalls the royals.
When Catherine reconciles with Francis before his death, she promises to be Queen Regent until his brother is ready to rule. While she does that, in the finale, she discovers once more that her son is really not cut out for the role of king. She takes the advice of a witch and leaves him to rule on his own, taking solace with her daughter Margot.
Despite her seemingly betraying Mary early in the series by having a one-night stand with Francis, Lola is one of the most beloved characters of the series. The audience respects her ability to make tough decisions in a time when she’s expected to fall in line.
It’s that ability, however, that causes her sticky end. When Lola’s relationship with Narcisse shatters, she decides to return to her family in England. While there, Lola is tricked into helping with a plan to assassinate Queen Elizabeth, believing that she’s acting under Mary’s orders. Unfortunately for her, she gets caught and is executed in front of her estranged husband.
Those who know their history were already aware going into the series that Francis would die long before Mary, though in reality, it was his already frail health that took his life. The series takes another route.
When Mary is attacked in the woods, it’s Francis who comes to her aid while the guards are busy fighting others off. During the course of the fight, Francis suffers a head injury he can’t recover from. Before he dies, however, he makes Mary promise to wait for the next monarch – and his mother as Queen Regent – to be secure before she leaves the country.
Claude is a little trouble maker when introduced. She’s the younger sister of Francis, and she doesn’t understand why she can’t be the center of attention at court all the time. Over the course of her time on the show, she matures and even falls in love – with the man who is supposed to guard her.
Of course, Claude can’t be with him and ends up in an arranged marriage to Narcisse’s son. As the series barrels toward its conclusion, it seems like the arranged couple might finally be hitting it off, especially when Claude is denied the chance to leave him for her guard by her brother Charles, the current king. Strangely, Claude’s story is never really resolved. She tells Catherine that her husband has left her, so she’s left without love at all, but that’s where her story abruptly ends for the show.
Way back in the first season of the series Leith is but a kitchen boy hung up on one of Mary’s ladies in waiting. In fact, their feelings for one another cost her a good match and she loses her potential husband to someone else. Over time, Leith makes something of himself, becoming a member of the royal guard.
Leith is the guard assigned to Claude, and unlike a lot of the other people in the palace, Leith isn’t intimidated by her. He also doesn’t treat her like a child. Naturally, they fall for one another, but he loses his chance to be with her when her mother arranges a suitor for her. When Claude tries to get her marriage annulled, she reaches out to Leith in a letter, only to discover he’s already married to someone else, though the audience never sees him again.
Greer has one of the most tumultuous lives on the series – being kicked out of court in France, seeing her husband sent to prison, running a brothel, and having a relationship with a pirate – but she’s Mary’s one lady in waiting who remains by her side nearly to the end.
After Lola’s death, Greer makes the move to Scotland. Mary, forced to make political decisions from Lola’s “treason,” has to confiscate Lola’s family’s land. She wants them in good hands, so she gets Greer and Lord Castleroy to manage them. It has the effect of keeping her dear friend close and making sure Lola’s family isn’t hurt by someone else.
Though Catherine is the antagonist for Mary in much of the early episodes of the series, the two find common ground through Francis. Mary struggles to find any common ground with her cousin Elizabeth since they both believe the English throne should be theirs.
Elizabeth ends the series by becoming the true Warrior Queen. She leads her troops into battle, makes sure Mary is arrested for treason and becomes the fierce monarch who doesn’t need a man to rule. She also, in a two decades later flash-forward, offers Mary’s son the throne, uniting Scotland and England upon her death, as long as he agrees to allow her mother’s execution to move forward.
Mary just wants to live her life, but throughout her years, she is plagued by constant threats to her rule, her want to put the people closest to her first, and her need to protect herself. Adelaide Kane brings a fashionable picture to a tragic monarch for the four seasons.
When Mary makes the decision to have her mentally unstable husband killed at the end of the fourth season, it’s the moment that leads to her doom. The final episode flashes forward two decades later to show that she’s been imprisoned in England and slated for execution for her crimes against Elizabeth. Though Mary’s son James doesn’t come to offer her a reprieve, he does get her one wish that she asks of Elizabeth – to rule.
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