Synopsis: In ‘The Prize’. Treville takes controversial steps to protect the Dauphin as France’s enemies draw closer. Will his secretive tactics drive the Musketeers apart?
Review: In this penultimate episode King Louis passes, but before doing so is able to make Treville regent to the crown. The move is to protect France and his son the Dauphin from Prince Gaston, The Duke of Lorraine and Grimaud who all want to kidnap or do away with the young boy so they can take the throne.
One of Trevilles first orders is to tell Athos to take the boy away from the Palace and hide him. Athos hands the Dauphin over to Constance and Sylvie who take him around several locations in the city. Athos is ordered not to tell Aramis about the prince, which begins to drive a bit of a wedge between the Musketeers. Treville knows that Gaston and Grimaud see the Dauphin as some sort of prize and have little or no interest in him beyond using him as a bargaining chip.
Treville then orders that the Red guard be disbanded. He’d rather have men that are loyal to France fighting at his side. Not the corrupt Red Guard who even when dormant can be brought.
When Queen Anne finds out that Treville has had the Dauphin taken away she begins to investigate to find out where her son has been taken, which threatens to undermine Treville’s plan. The plan involves substituting the Dauphin with a decoy in order to trick the Prince Gaston and drive a wedge between him, The Duke of Lorraine and Grimaud, who happens to be bankrolling the Duke and Gaston’s army.
It’s a complex plan, which has its ups and downs during the execution. One of the major down sides to it is the fact that it forces D’Artagnan, Athos and Porthos to keep their friend Aramis in the dark. Treville is worried that Aramis’s loyalty and emotional attachment to the Queen could be to the detriment of his plan. But it turns out that splitting the Musketeers up in this way is also a risk.
This episode has a lot of twists and turns and the action when it happens is damn good. But it is the complex plan and its execution and the problems that Treville and the Musketeers come across along the way that keeps you glued.
It also ends on a sad and tragic note, which will no doubt give the finale more emotional punch when the Musketeers go after Grimaud and put an end to him.
Some great performances all round. Especially from Hugo Speer in his new role as a regent. Also a great performance from Thalissa Teixeira as Sylvie who provides some social commentary when helping Constance keep the Dauphin hidden. Sylvie comments that the Dauphin will likely raise the price of bread when he grows up to be King. However given that the Dauphin grows up to be Louis XIV who the French referred to as the Sun King means that he was probably listening. The real Louis XIV was much loved throughout his reign.
‘The Prize’ leaves things in a great place for the series finale to pick up on. Everything is up in the air and emotions within the Musketeers are running high. Though I have to wonder who else is going to be killed off in the series finale. Could we see an end to Constance, who in the novel’s and all prior incarnations of ‘The Three Musketeers’ would have been dead by now. Or will they opt to let her and D’Artagnan live a fruitful and full life. It will be interesting to find out.
- Incidental Music9.6