We’re excited enough by Hulu’s comedic version of Catherine the Great that we’re recapping and podcasting the series two episodes at a time. Pour yourself a cocktail, because we don’t expect to take The Great (2020) too seriously! Here’s our screencaps to follow along with our costume analysis in this week’s podcast.
Episode one starts with Catherine and a friend on flower-decked swings, talking about Catherine’s upcoming marriage to the emperor of Russia. Cathy has an awfully romantic idea of the whole thing, and this first episode exists to burst her bubble.
Cathy’s off to Russia, dreaming her little dreams.
She meets Peter for the first time, and he’s a douchebag. But he’s wearing a wig!
Big flashy wedding feast, and Cathy is still all romantic and excited.
The wedding night is less than satisfactory for Cathy, but she still thinks she can eek love out of this arrangement. Oh gurl.
Peter introduces Cathy to his mom. His dead mom.
Then he sends Cathy off with the court ladies to play with hats.
Cathy is disappointed to discover the court ladies can’t read and just spend their days gossiping and playing games.
She petitions Peter to build a school, & he agrees, kind of.
Peter has the school burned down though, and that, along with his fucking every other woman in court, bums Cathy out.
She goes to this big, nutjob party where people are drunk and stupid, and Peter is shooting is gun off inside the room.
Peter shoots the bear he’d given to Cathy as a gift. She slaps him and runs out of the party. Shit gets real.
Episode one ends with Cathy figuring out that a love-match is totally not happening, so how about a coup instead?
And thus episode two starts with Cathy getting yet another fuck by Peter.
After the obligatory royal fuck, Peter goes to chill with the court bitches.
And by ‘chill’ we mean ‘fuck.’
Meanwhile, Cathy takes a bath and plots a coup.
The emperor and his council meet and order a guy to cut off his beard — one of Peter’s previous “reforms” to make Russia “modern” was to outlaw long beards. Count Orlov sticks up for the beard guy, and this will become important later. Back to Cathy. She goes out and about to the court.
Yeah, there is implied animal violence, though not actually shown on screen. Kendra is VERY CONCERNED ABOUT THIS SHOW’S CRITTERS, even if she knows objectively that it’s fictional. POOR RACCOON. POOR BEAR. POOR PUPPIES!!
Peter has a chat with his crazy aunt, who is easily the most interesting woman at court. She tells Peter something inside him is “rancid,” according to his mom.
Cathy tries to make progress on coup-plotting with a ludicrously bad attempt at seducing Orlov. But no costume changes until the next day, when she’s afraid he’ll reveal her plans.
Peter tries to have another talk with Cathy and sorta make nice. He’s not good at it, of course. So he goes off hunting.
There’s a feast to celebrate a battle against Sweden.
Time for a new dress!
The next time the beard guy comes to see Peter, the emperor forces Orlov to shave him. This seals the deal, and Orlov is 100% in with Cathy’s coup.
We’ll be back in two weeks with episodes three & four!
The Great Episodes One & Two, Podcast Recap
Listen to our podcast recap of the episode here or on iTunes!