Carnival Row – Season 2 Episode 5 “Reckoning” Recap & Review

Another One Bites The Dust

Episode 5 of Carnival Row season 2 titled ‘Reckoning’ starts off with Philo taking in the aftermath of the cops’ attack on the Row. He heads home where he is followed by an angry Kaine. As they fight, Philo says he needs him in helping Vignette. Meanwhile, Vignette is at her trial with the audience bashing her. Dombey gives an exaggerated version of the incident and avoids mentioning Philo and Darius’ help. 

Philo tries to get to Kaine as he explains that Vignette won’t get a fair trial. Kaine finally gives in and calls it a truce after he realises that Philo loves her. At the parliament, Winetrout finally comes up with proof of Sophie’s factory scheme which shocks Jonah. Winetrout also hints at rumours that Sophie is not working alone and will use her new profit to buy all the seats in the parliament and make herself chancellor.

Meanwhile, Sophie and Nilly spot the latter’s brother as he is drafted to work in the factory. Nilly congratulates her for being the richest person in the Burgue and Sophie feels free.

Millworthy meets with the Pact ambassador and Vir who thank him for the weapons. Vir is impressed with his plan but continues to suspect his ulterior motives. He suggests that should he use this deal to let the fae escape the Row, he would be considered a class traitor and an enemy of the Pact. Millworthy doesn’t look deterred and leaves.

At the Haruspex shop, Tourmaline is busy working on a ritual to help Vignette and Darius reminds her that it is the same dark magic that she wants to get rid of. He ends up hugging her as he to tries stop her and tells her that Vignette would want her to save herself too. Tourmaline rebuffs him and continues with the ritual. She sees a vision of Vignette being guillotined and screams. She falls into Darius and hugs him while crying.

However, Vignette looks anything but afraid as she smirks at the crowd shouting at her. While being transported to her carriage, Philo uses it to send her a message and tells her to be ready the next day.

At the parliament, Jonah meets with Sophie and tells her that he accepts the wedding proposal she had put forth in the previous season. She tries to hide her disappointment as he is more of a deadweight than the ally she needs. She tries to manipulate him into thinking that the marriage is a bad idea but Jonah doesn’t waver.

Sophie simply kisses him and says that they should announce their marriage after the next elections. He realises what she is doing but agrees. She, however, refuses to have lunch with him and leaves while Jonah looks angry and hurt. She meets with her ministers and plans to replace Winetrout.

She is stopped by doctors who claim that the Bas Dubh is contagious and since she held an infected fae child she needs to be isolated. She agrees to go to the hospital but on the way, she realises that it’s a trap and the guards arrest her on Jonah’s orders.

Meanwhile, Kaine and Philo keep butting heads as they come up with a rescue plan. Darius and Tourmaline rush to them and tell Philo that they don’t have the next day as Vignette is going to be executed the same night. Philo looks worried as he doesn’t trust Kaine and Darius apologizes for not being much help. 

Sophie’s carriage heads to the Bleakness Keep, the same prison where Vignette is held. She is dragged inside and thrown into a cell opposite Vignette’s. Vignette laughs at the irony and calls it justice. Sophie tells her that she wasn’t pretending and was trying to help but she too has been in a cage all her life as a woman. They bond over the weak men who don’t respect women.

Elsewhere, Jonah tells Millworthy about Sophie’s ‘treason’ who looks confused. He confirms that during a national crisis, a chancellor has the authority to order an execution for high treason. Jonah also catches onto Millworthy’s conspiracy with Vir and is angry at him for breaking his trust and has him sent to the Bleakness for treason. 

That night, they plan to use Kaine as bait to distract the guards while Philo looks for Vignette. Kaine wonders how Philo will escape as he can’t fly and the former officer thinks he can just walk out. They reach the Bleakness Keep with Kaine pretending to be Philo’s prisoner but they face an obstacle as the guard refuses them entry.

At the same time, Jonah visits Sophie and tells her to give a signed confession if she wants to live. She realises that if she does, he will take her money and parliament seat. She tears the confession while Vignette observes the interaction and calls him a monster. Jonah orders Sophie, Millworthy and Vignette to the guillotine.

Sophie is tied to the guillotine and she threatens Jonah not to look away. He does and executes her. Vignette is next but before the guillotine falls, all of the guards are killed by the flying murderer that Philo had thought was fae.

The creature kills Jonah last and then approaches Vignette who is still tied to the guillotine. Outside, Kaine and Philo head inside in the chaos as someone frees all the prisoners. They meet Millworthy who looks dazed and tells them that Vignette has flown off and they see the creature fly away too. However, the remaining cops arrest Kaine and Philo.

The Episode Review

Okay, it does seem that Jonah is not as much of a fool as we thought. However, while we would like him to stand up for himself and get something done, Sophie was finally getting interesting. She not only had big plans that we wouldn’t mind seeing her accomplish, but it would have also been fun to see how she would manage to get out of Jonah’s trap. By the way, has anyone else forgotten that they are half-siblings? Anyway, it is a shame that Sophie was killed off so soon.

Well, it may have taken half of the season, but things are finally picking up. There wasn’t a single lull in the episode from the Sophie-Jonah showdown to Kaine and Philo trying to rescue Vignette. We also get a glimpse of the humanoid monster making us wonder if it is someone we already know. And while we know the next episode will follow Imogen and Agreus in Ragusa, for once we would like to see more of the Row storyline.

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You can read our full season review for Carnival Row season 2 here!

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