The Serpent Queen is back as Catherine once again summons Rahima – having picked her as her maid. Her fellow servants now turn against her and try to sabotage her. Catherine believes that Rahima is not responsible for the prank and turns into another lesson.
We continue with Catherine’s past as she reveals that her family has fallen out of favour, and as she is still not pregnant – her marriage is seriously on the line. Catherine needs more than anything to get Henry into her bed. An awkward attempt at conversation follows, and she messes it up by insulting her brother-in-law. Things get even worse when Catherine learns that her uncle, the Pope, has died, leaving her dowry unpaid. In fear, she claims to be, possibly, with child. This earns her some points with her husband, who confides in her about his youth. He promises to visit her that night, but Henry’s mistress Diane intercepts him.
In tears, Catherine tells the King to find Henry a new wife, young and virginal – thwarting Diane’s plans of marrying Henry, who is considerably older than Henry. The King is impressed by her fake tears and tells her that he won’t let her go just yet. Later that day, Catherine sleeps with the stablehand in order to conceive, only to find Henry in her room to do his duty. Meanwhile, two Princesses are brought in as possible brides for Henry’s brother (and also possibly to replace her). Henry’s brother suddenly spirals out of control when he kills the stablehand’s wife during a picnic. The King then orders Henry to finish the job – killing the stablehand and his son, but Henry flees with Catherine not far behind him. He confesses to her that he hates his father and brother. Once more, Diane’s influence calls him back to their side. He ends up killing the stablehand before telling the son to run.
Catherine then finds an unexpected ally in the Sultan, who has overstayed his welcome since the wedding. Catherine convinces Henry to ally with the Sultan to win back the Italian provinces promised in her dowry, which also serves to help Henry return to his father’s favour. As arranged, Henry goes on campaign as Catherine waves him off. She has just gotten her period again.
As we return to the present, Catherine tells Rahima to teach her enemies a lesson – and ends up blowing up the kitchens.
Although with much less humour than the first episode, the second episode is another kicker. I could have done without the bloody picnic scene, which seemed rather unnecessary for the storyline. However, I love young Catherine’s cheekiness, and the breaking of the fourth wall seems to go well with this.
I am looking forward to the next episode.
The Serpent Queen is available now on STARZ and Amazon Prime. You can sign up here for Amazon Prime.