This episode is FILLED with plot-driving material, so saddle up and get ready for a ride! The basic drive of the episode: Lord Capulet is trying to manage his debts, and the betrothal of Rosaline Capulet and Benvolio Montague appears to be his way out through Rosaline’s bride price.
Lord Montague is conniving as ever, sending Rosaline a sonnet and picnic invitation signed with Benvolio’s name. Of course, he also sent it out to be read out loud to all of Verona. Queue the taunting and jeering while Benvolio visits the pub, especially from his cousin Truccio.
Of course, Benvolio still comes up with a plan to get out of the marriage. During the picnic, he proposes that he will send a carriage to the Capulet residence that night which will take Rosaline to the Abbey. Rosaline agrees, desperate to get out of their betrothal and away from Verona. Yet when the time comes, she is unable to leave because she cannot leave her sister, Livia behind. Instead, she tells her uncle that she’ll cooperate with the betrothal ceremony if he restores Livia to her status as a Lady in return. Lord Capulet agrees on the condition that she convince both Verona and herself that she is in love with Benvolio.
During their betrothal ceremony, both Benvolio and Rosaline take one final glance at their true loves before their hands are corded and their betrothal is sealed. Before the celebration can begin, a mysterious archer appears on top of a building and sets flame to a cart containing wooden dummies of a man and a woman. He declares that it is “a wedding gift to bless this foul union” before the cart explodes—charming, right? Benvolio and Rosaline chase the archer down and discover that it is Benvolio’s cousin, Truccio.
Truccio never declared loyalty to either family during his disastrous spectacle, which makes him a common enemy to both houses. If Rosaline and Benvolio can prove this, their families will have something to unite against, and their marriage will no longer be necessary. But, naturally, this revelation ends with a tender glance between them. We’ll definitely see that unfold later!
The most intriguing event in this episode is the appearance of Juliet’s ghost. When he finally visits her crypt, Lord Capulet sees Juliet’s ghost. Juliet cryptically says “Beware”, leaving both her father and us viewers wondering what he should beware of. Perhaps the next episode will reveal a sinister twist regarding Capulet’s debt? Or yet another of Lord Montagues’s shady action? Whatever it is that Juliet is warning her father about, we can be sure that it will somehow affect Benvolio and Rosaline’s marriage.
Like I said, there is a lot happening here. The revelation of a conspiratorial insider within his family leaves Benvolio in a tough spot— who can he trust if his own family is turning traitorous? Has Rosaline made the right choice by staying in Verona, or has she put both herself and her sister in danger by going through with the betrothal? If the marriage doesn’t happen, how will Lord Capulet pay his debts and maintain the dignity of his house? Juliet’s Hamlet-esque appearance drives these questions forward, leaving us to wonder if these questions will be answered in a pleasant or dramatically disastrous way. All the world’s a stage, and we will just have to wait and see how this all plays out!
Unfortunately, this wait will be prolonged until Saturday, July 8th. The show’s move to a Saturday slot does not bode well, but we will continue to keep our hope alive!