After taking a week’s break last week so that BBC One viewers could watch Manchester United do badly in the FA Cup, The Musketeers were back to deal with issues of faith and mob rule. It all went a bit Joan of Arc as prophet Emilie told the people of France that it was their destiny to rise up against Spain and depose the antichrist King Philip. With Spaniards brutally lynched in the streets of Paris before the opening titles, it was easy to imagine that this was going to be an episode full of violence and action.
The Musketeers now seems to have an awareness of gender issues, following on from Constance’s diatribe in episode one about how it’s a man’s world. You’ve got Louis sidelining Milady from political discussions, Anne aware that it’s only her fertility that keeps her as queen, and Marguerite’s reputation more important to her than anything. But what’s great is that The Musketeers also chooses to make the audience complicit in treating women as inferior. After all, the prostitute might accuse Rochefort of “never ask[ing her] name,” but did we even notice up until that point that she hasn’t had a name in the end credits?