It took five months, but here's the post I wrote right after watching Reign's finale, which now feels like a million years ago.
Reign is now over for good, and I say that with a massive amount of relief. The finale confirmed for me that the series should have stayed about Mary and Francis' relationship and ended after season two. If that weren't the case, they wouldn't have felt the need to bring Francis back in the final scene like they did.
Bothwell's insistence that he and Mary were meant for each other also looks rather ridiculous once you make it to the finale (if it didn't already). The show never has them get married like they did in real life, and on top of that, it's Francis she's with in the afterlife, with no mention of Bothwell at all. It makes me wonder why they handled Mary's relationship with Bothwell like they did since it wasn't really needed (anything it added could have easily been done without any implied romance between them) and came to nothing in the end.
The witch stuff... What was that? There's nothing else to say about it other than that it was weird, and I have no idea why that was there considering nothing panned out from it either. So much of this show has just left me confused.
Elizabeth's story in this episode was the only part I enjoyed at all. It felt like watching Elizabeth come into the role she was meant to have, which was nice.
Mary, on the other hand, had a much worse story this episode, which sucks considering she's the main character and should have had the best ending.
I was never expecting a time skip, and frankly, I don't understand why we got one. It wasn't something I wanted, seeing Mary's death portrayed. I haven't been a fan of Reign's constant time jumps as they try to tell Mary's entire life (especially as they highlight what I said earlier about how the show should have ended after season two), but I figured they would end the series with Darnley's death, not Mary's. (It also feels weird that they didn't attempt to age Mary to appear decades older except by putting her hair up.)
The only nice part of that was getting to see James as an adult, but what I think would have been really nice would have been seeing a short clip of him being crowned king of England, showing that he accomplished what Mary had been after earlier in the series. That would have been fitting I think, but it's not what we got, despite seeing him talk to Elizabeth.
Mary's death just didn't feel necessary to the show. The sudden time jump felt out of place, and we got nothing more than a rushed explanation for why Mary got put to death, which had nothing to do with anything else that had happened in the series. (I also wonder if the reason for the execution was clear to anyone who didn't already know what happened, since the show didn't put much effort into explaining why she was being executed.)
The show would have been much better off ending the episode with Mary fleeing to England at least. We didn't need anything that came after that.
As I mentioned before, the addition of Mary in the afterlife with Francis was even more ridiculous. It felt too cheesy and out of place, and all it did for me was illustrate what's been wrong with the show for the past two seasons.
So, yeah, the finale of Reign was disappointing to me, which sucks as I was hoping to at least feel pretty good about this one episode after hating the previous episodes more and more. I should have known not to get my hopes up since I haven't been optimistic about an episode of Reign since the very beginning of season three.
I'm glad it's over. Reign deserved to have its finale years ago.