The Letter for the King season 1, episode 1, “Storm Clouds Gather” is plotty and ambitious, which doesn’t work in its favour at times.
This recap of Netflix Series The Letter for the King season 1, episode 1, “Storm Clouds Gather” contains significant spoilers.
- Read the Season 1 review.
- Read the recap of Episode 2.
- Access the archive of all the episode recaps.
A story like this has to of course open up with a narrator building up an ancient and dark story — there are words of a prophecy; a hero that will defeat darkness.
The Letter for the King season 1, episode 1, “Storm Clouds Gather” begins in Dagonaut — 3,000 miles to the North. Young Master Tiuri wakes up sweating. He is told he is late and Bors is waiting and he starts training for his knight test. His father, Sir Tiuri, turns up and tells Tiuri that there is room for improvement.
I’ll be honest — I feel there was a lot of improvement needed.
Master Tiuri and his father practice together and his father ends up knocking Tiuri out. Tiuri tells his mother that he is not ready and that he does not want to train. He also asks who is real father is, confirming that Sir Tiuri is not biological. His mother tells him that he will succeed in the trials and will become a knight.
The next day, Master Tiuri enters the town in Dagonaut where celebrations have started to welcome the prospective knight — the next day the games will begin.
We are then moved to Prince Viridian’s camp in Eviellan. The Prince talks about the great fire he’s about to start. He asks one of his men to take the letters; choose five knights and crush anyone and anything in their way.
The villain looks like he means business.
Back to practice, and useless Tiuri is still struggling — he is told to act quicker and then he will succeed; baseless, nonsense advice but we have to go with it at this point.
At the midway point, the games begin. Tiuri does well at the start of the games (bit lucky). While on the horse, he hears whispers and becomes disorientated — he is beaten by another prospective knight.
And then this is where the first episode becomes too plotty for its own good when it should have just focused on world-building. In Eviellan, Prince Viridian visits a Shaman. He tells her that the chieftain she served is dead and that she must now serve him; the Shaman dismisses that claim and states he never conquered Eviellan. The Prince then opens up his hands to show some kind of power and ornaments jingle above him, and the wind rushes. The Shaman talks of the prophecy and states her power will never be his. Of course, he disagrees and stabs her.
Back to the knight games and they resume the next day. Tiuri gets on his horse and ready for jostling. He wins with ease but then his opponent tells Tiuri that his father paid him to win. After, an angry Tiuri confronts his father about the claim, and his father says he did what he had to do.
To be fair, he wasn’t going to win any other way.
The Letter for the King season 1, episode 1, “Storm Clouds Gather” closes with the prospective knights entering their final task at the Sepulchre of the Lost. They are told to stay silent as they are tested. But there is a knock on the door and Vokia takes them to a Black Knight who is hurt. The Black Knight gives them a letter and tells Tiuri to take it to King Favien of Unauwen; by the next full moon, it will be too late. Tiuri says Unauwen is too far and the next full moon is in 14 days, which just demonstrates the lack of ambition our lead character has in his early days.
Vokia and the Black Knight give Tiuri a horse. Tiuri runs off as the Black Knight is killed by the red riders. The red riders then look for Tiuri as he rides off on the horse. Of course, Tiuri does not know how to ride a horse properly and ends up jumping off a cliff into water. Tiuri is unconscious underwater while the horse climbs out.
At this point, I made a weak bet that he is not really dead…
- Sir Fantumar likes to go hunting.
- Prince Viridian has ended the Eviellan war.
- Sir Tiuri is offended by his acquaintances disrespecting his son.
- Tiuri tells his mother that the voices keep happening. He tells him that he must stop them.
- Tiuri is accused of being a cheat due to the knight games.
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1 thought on “The Letter for the King season 1, episode 1 recap – “Storm Clouds Gather””
Thanks for this. I expect it’s a lot of work. I was hoping for a bit of explanation rather than a scene by scene recounting. I’d watched episode 1 a while ago and wanted to remember what the kingdoms were and who the main players are.