The Borgias

Season 1 Episode 9


Aired Sunday 10:00 PM May 22, 2011 on Showtime
out of 10
User Rating
68 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Abandoned by even his cardinals, Alexander meets King Charles with humility and saves his throne, even eliciting a confession from the conqueror he crowns as the new "King of France and Naples;" Della Rovere despairs as Charles abandons him; Lucrezia safely gives birth to a son in a convent as the Borgias secure an annulment of her marriage and plot revenge on their enemies.moreless

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  • *** Spoiler-free *** Enchanting finale, not vicious enough nor a magnum opus but full of greatness

    Like all season finales Nessuno (Nobody) carried the mission to wrap things up. Still considering its highs and lows you shouldn't be surprised that it actually could be considered as The Borgias finale. Indeed if Showtime hadn't ordered a second season viewers could still move on with their lives without being frustrated. In my opinion it was an easy escape and revealed the relative lack of confidence Neil Jordan and his team had in their own creation. Worst the last scene just didn't fit and jarred with the show controversial and tormented spirit. But the relative disappointment that tipped after watching Nessuno was actually overbalanced by numerous submerged elements because let's not forget that The Borgias has more strengths than weaknesses.

    After The Art of War cliffhanger I highly anticipated the inevitable encounter between the Pope (Jeremy Irons) and Charles VIII the King of France (Michel Muller). I didn't really like how the last was quickly thrown in the pit, because of Lucrezia's spontaneous diplomatic skills, but the scene between Irons and Muller was delightful. Theatrical could be the best way to define it because it oscillated between dramatic tension and religious comedy. Even if I find Irons performance over the top at times it probably helps to make his character more accessible and entertaining. I don't like the fact that authenticity is sacrificed, specially for a historical fiction, but it doesn't ruin the experience, far from it.

    As for cardinal Giuliano della Rovere his battle with Cesare has potential and it was exciting to see them fight with their wit. The cardinals and Lucrezia's husband arcs were also one of the many things that went right. In my previous reviews I criticized the one man writing and its relative repetitiveness when it came to humor but this time it was a flawless victory. It's obvious Neil Jordan's intention was virtuous and I still regret that the episode wasn't darker and disturbing but overall its wicked factor was decent. In fact I didn't see the story twist coming and Cesare's arc brought an other layer to it. It should remind you of the premiere actually. Even better all these stories were linked and served only one goal, make the best finale possible.

    So in terms of contents this last installment was rich but like The Poisoned Chalice and Lucrezia's Wedding proved it the series is also agile when it comes to production. Indeed from the well post-processed cathedral scene, Muller really seemed like a hobbit in it, to the immersive candle lighting without forgetting the refreshing outdoor scenes and well designed costumes we just had one of the finest execution on time and on budget. Of course they would have done a better job with a few extra millions, years and talent individuals but The Borgias tends to make you a little more reasonable than that. Last but not least I also noticed that Trevor Morris fueled some scenes with a dynamic soundtrack that made the journey even more enchanting. Don't get me wrong it's obvious they won't live happily ever after but until season 2 not answering Nessuno's call could be a dreadful mistake.moreless
  • 109

    The Borgias has been a fun little show for me as a viewer. I actually think that the short season is a good thing. While I know it probably had to do with the cast, I think that The Borgias has some issues it needs to work out and the long break until season 2 will help them do that. I mean, ending the season with a child birth? I guess even period dramas have to have cliched season finales, huh? I thought that the show squandered a bit of the momentum it had been building for the past few weeks and while the episode was decent, it was not one that really showcased what the show has been about for the past two months. Okay episode, not worthy of a season finale though.moreless

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