Carnival Row Season 2 Episode 5 Recap – Who dies in the “Reckoning?”

March 3, 2023 (Last updated: 2 weeks ago)
Lori C. 0
Amazon Prime, Streaming Service, Weekly TV
View all


Season 2 Episode 5 is a heart-stomping shocker that ups the stakes for the rest of the series. It’s the most thrilling episode this season yet and will likely be difficult to top.

We recap the Prime Video series Carnival Row Season 2 Episode 5, “Reckoning,” which contains spoilers.

Season 2 Episode 5 is a heart-stomping shocker that ups the stakes for the rest of the series. Marking season two’s halfway point, this episode kills off two major characters, and we finally meet the murderous creature plaguing Tourmaline’s (Karla Crome) visions. It’s the most thrilling episode this season yet and will likely be hard to top. I’m curious to see where the narrative goes without Sophie (Caroline Ford) and Jonah (Arty Froushan). 

Carnival Row Season 2 Episode 5 Recap

At the end of episode 4, poor Vignette was dragged away in handcuffs for Dombey’s attempted murder. An angry Kaine attacks Philo at home, but the former police inspector overpowers him. After exchanging pleasantries, the two men agree to work together for Vignette’s sake. 

To Darius’s dismay, Tourmaline taps into her dark magical abilities and gets a terrifying vision of Vignette getting executed. After she relays the information to Philo and Kaine, the two decide to break into Bleakness Keep that very night and rescue her. 

Vignette’s sham of a trial

Inside the respectable Burgue courthouse, Vignette’s trial isn’t going well. It seems the entire police force and half of the Republic’s population are demanding her head. Dombey gives damning testimony in court against the Pix but, funnily enough, stops short of mentioning who saved his life. After all, it would be awkward for the Critch-hating Seargent to admit he owes his life to one. 

When asked if she had anything to say to her defense, our ever rebel Vignette spits on the court. No words are needed, the trial is a sham, and her execution is inevitable. 

The Row is Open for Business

Millworthy’s plan to re-open the Row seems to be working. The Burgue has completed its first weapons delivery to The Pact, and the factories are working again. Major Vir caught on that the former street performer has a pro-Fae agenda and calls him out. The usually polite Millworthy tells Vir to mind his business, ending their conversation. 

Sophie and her Puck chambermaid friend secretly make their way to the Row, where they glimpse Jenila’s brother being allowed to go to work. The two women revel in Sophie’s achievements and discuss their plans for her to eventually take on the distinguished role of chancellor. 

Jonah Throws a Deadly Tantrum

Sadly, Miss Longerbane’s victory will be short-lived as Jonah catches wind of her betrayal. First, he awkwardly proposes marriage – This might be the right time to remind you that Sophie is Jonah’s sister. While she doesn’t outright reject him, she suggests they wait until after the election. But the young Chancellor was aware of Sophie’s plans to overthrow him at the next election. As any scorned incestuous lover would, Jonah sets up a ruse to have her arrested and sent to Bleakness Keep. While he’s in the middle of a dictator’s tantrum, Jonah also arrests Millworthy for the arms deal he made with The Pact. 

At Bleakness Keep, a compelling scene between Vignette and Sophie takes place. Vignette learns she has more in common with the disgraced politician than initially thought, and the two women bond in their shared hatred of the men in power. 

Meanwhile, Philo and Kaine are heading to Bleakness Keep to break Vignette out. Philo steals a copper’s uniform, and their plan involves getting in by pretending to be a police officer taking a prisoner in. 

Who dies in the “Reckoning?”

Jonah visits Sophie in her cell and demands she signs a document confessing to her crimes. A defiant Sophie refuses despite knowing she’ll be put to death. Thinking he has no other choice, Jonah leads Sophie down the corridor toward her execution. Vignette wasn’t on his radar, but she can’t help herself from expressing her true feelings about our young chancellor – She shouts at him, “You’re a f****** monster!” He responds by including her in his little guillotine party. Vignette, Sophie, and poor Millworthy are all escorted to the Bleakness Keep courtyard, where they have a date with the guillotine. 

Outside, Sophie is the first to face her fate. She’s calm, collected, and dignified as the executioner straps her to the guillotine. Her final words go to Jonah, “Don’t you dare look away from me!” He doesn’t but quietly gives the order to release the blade, and Sophie’s head rolls (literally!). RIP, Sophie Longerbane; you were formidable. It’s official. Sophie dies.

Carnival Row Season 2 Episode 5 Ending Explained

Poor Jonah doesn’t have the stomach for dictatorship, and as soon as Sophie’s head falls off, he immediately vomits. But still gives the following order – It’s Vignette’s turn to meet the blade. After strapping her onto the guillotine, the unfortunate executioner loses his guts before pulling the lever. And by that, I mean he’s disemboweled. 

The mysterious killer creature that’s been causing havoc on the Row and in Tourmaline’s visions decided to join Jonah’s guillotine party. Still tightly strapped, Vignette watched in horror as the creature took out most of the guards one by one in the most gruesome fashion. 

The Killer Creature Revealed

The creature is quite the sight – Bat-like in shape, its head is a skeleton, and razor-sharp teeth ornate its wings and chest. When the young chancellor catches its eyes, the creature gives him what can only be described as the hug of death, tearing his insides apart. What’s left of Jonah falls poetically next to Sophie’s decapitated head—an unexpected end for the two incestuous lovers and significant players in the Burgue’s political scene. 

When Philo and Kaine enter Bleakness Keep, the creature is gone, leaving behind a trail of dead bodies. But there’s no sign of Vignette. Shaken up and still alive, Millworthy tells Philo that Vignette flew away after the monster unstrapped her. Before Philo and Kaine can process what happened, they’re both arrested by prison guards. 

What did you think of Carnival Row Season 2 Episode 5? Comment below.

More Stories

Find where to watch this and more with our Discovery Tool

Explore Now
View all

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.