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Last week on The Musketeers we got to explore Aramis’ sordid past, and this week is Porthos' turn. Exciting and only a little bit heartbreaking, the episode opens with Porthos on trial for murder. After spending his birthday in a drunken night of revelry, he wakes up alone, in the streets, with a dead man only a few feet away, and no memory of the night before.
The judge speedily declares Porthos guilty based on quite an astonishing lack of evidence. He explains that a man is dead, so they have to make an example of him, and so Porthos is promptly dragged off to the gallows. And he would’ve been quickly done away with if not for the band of criminals that manages to save his neck. The rest of the Musketeers watch as he’s carted away.
They’re not too concerned, as Aramis knows exactly where he’s being taken—the Court of Miracles, a section of Paris filled with thieves, robbers, and the poor who have nowhere else to go. While Treville manages to push back Porthos’ execution, Porthos himself is reunited with his former home, and an old friend and lover to boot. Meanwhile, Athos, Aramis and D’Artagnan investigate what really happened that night and who would want to frame their friend.
The remaining Musketeers split up — Aramis and D’Artagnan go to examine the body and find out that the dead man was a noble and that the bullet was shot from very close so it was in fact, murder, not an accident. Athos has less success with his task, which is to break into the Court of Miracles. As soon as he enters in his disguise, he’s attacked. But it’s Porthos’ friend who is the one to actually make him leave. He blames the Musketeers for leaving Porthos to hang, even though they didn’t have much choice, and says Porthos is with them now.
Treville isn’t too happy with this information and doesn’t believe for a second that Porthos, an orphan who worked the hardest of all of them to raise himself up, would ever desert the Musketeers. So they’re sent to further investigate the mystery of the young nobleman’s death, starting with the man’s father.
It turns out this boy was living apart from his father and when they go to search his place, they find an order for a ton of gun powder. The whole thing turns into a religious debate—Jean, the dead man, was a protestant but his father was pretending to be a catholic. All very complicated. After confronting the pastor, they figure out that it was actually Jean’s father who ordered the gunpowder.
Over in the Court of Miracles, Porthos has fell back into bed with an old flame. The only problem? She’s currently in a relationship with his friend, the leader of the court. But it looks like that’s probably the least of all their worries, as the Cardinal is scheming once again. This time, with Jean’s father. The two have developed a plan to burn the Court of Miracles to the ground, making way for the King’s vision of a new Paris, and reinstating Jean’s family’s wealth and prosperity. So not about religion, just money. Either one would've been a good guess.
The Musketeers and Treville, still on the case, come face to face with Jean’s father, who informs them that the bombings are to take place at midday, which gives them pretty much no time to intervene. But intervene they do. Meanwhile, Jean’s father looks out the window as the clock chimes, announcing it’s noon, and no bombs go off. So basically he killed his son because Jean couldn’t kill all those people, and now it was all in vein. Ouch.
In the court, Porthos confronts his old friend, who had sold out his people, and snuck in the gunpowder, for money and a chance at a better life. He tells Porthos he didn’t leave with him to become a Musketeer because he wanted Flea, Porthos’ old love, to be “his.” This is because apparently he has yet to grasp the fact that women are people, and don’t actually belong to anyone.
Porthos give him an out, and says he won’t come looking for him if he just leaves. Alas, he doesn’t listen. And we'd like to point out that this is the second time in two episodes that Musketeers’ friends haven’t heeded their warnings. Instead, he charges Porthos, and is met with the end of Aramis’ sword. Not listening to the Musketeers never really ends well for anyone.
But all is mostly well. Another day, another mystery solved and another Musketeer saved from execution.
image courtesy of Jean Catuffe/INFGoff.com