Hello all, Mad Dashiell here and thank you for joining me today-
History’s KNIGHTFALL will follow the final days of Knights Templar during the 14th century! The series comprises 10-episodes for the first season and premieres this Wednesday. The show will be paired alongside the network’s long-running series VIKINGS. KNIGHTFALL creators Don Handfield and Richard Rayner will hopefully find a successful blend of spectacle and historical drama following the Knights Templar as they search to reconnect with the Holy Grail. The history of the Knights Templar is highly complex to be sure, bringing together elements of medieval religion combined with religious zealotry as the order is fighting for survival during the upheaval of politics during that period.
The series is set in 12th-century Paris (I hear with repurposed sets from the series BORGIA), Knightfall is centered on Landry ( Tom Cullen of DOWNTOWN ABBY’s), a Knight’s Templar. After the failed attempt to liberate the Holy Land, the Templars sparsely began settling throughout numerous strongholds in Europe. A heavily armed force currently loyal only to the Catholic Church plots against them as forces continue to rally along the borders. Meanwhile, Landry’s Templar leader Godfrey (Sam Hazeldine) goes off following a mysterious thread of information that hints that the Grail was not lost to the deeps of the Mediterranean. It is in fact, hidden somewhere near Paris, this spurs a shadowy secret cabal known as the Brotherhood Of Light. Landry finds himself caught up in a complicated situation due to his friendship with the French King Philip (Ed Stoppard). If that isn't enough drama, Laundry also betrays his stalwart virtues by having an affair with Philip’s Queen Joan (Olivia Ross). What could possibly go wrong? At any rate, we find a central figure whose inner conflicts will certainly emerge.
Mad Dashiell's Space for Rant: As a card-carrying Mad Esoterrorist I am steeped in the study of symbols. Nothing really beats Boorman's EXCALIBUR when it comes to any film that involves the symbol of the Grail. I am worried however that in KNIGHTFALL they will make the Grail their MacGuffin and it will be the supernatural all-powerful, healing plot device like Marvel's Ultimate Nullifier.
Let's talk about the grail a little bit shall we? The Grail cycle, regardless of its origin or ties to Bran the Blessed, became a key to the religion that had no physical structure, entirely subjective, a religion where each individual made his own level of commitment. Having made that commitment the aspirant either succeeded or failed. In either case, alone. The Aloneness that follows the Grail cycle is symbolic of how the aspirant had to call on his own internal resources. There is a reason King Arthur and his company of Knights beheld the vision together at one time in their chapter of the Grail saga. Then after setting out together the quest eventually became personal and they separated one by one. Many finally came to the conclusion that the search is fruitless. Many decided that the Church of the Holy Grail is not in this world, an yet they believed it existed. The few that beheld the Grail again were alone. In the words of Plotinus- "the flight of the alone to the Alone". It is, therefore, the soul in man searching forever for the eternal soul in life. Those that achieve the search, and finally beheld the Grail became a company apart, but they were never organized as an organization. They became mutually knowing of each other because they had all attained the same level of insight. They were part of a level of internal illumination and not an organization.
That lengthy spill said I am already cringing by the plot devise in KNIGHTFALL surrounding the grail as a physical object. Maybe they will pull it off but if they drown it in a sexy, action, cool vibe it's gonna kill it. Some say it looks in no way as good as the VIKINGS but I already have a love-hate relationship with that show. Anyhow, I hope History pulls it off, Templar history is one of my favorite subjects. It comes at an interesting time as only a few months ago the legacy of the Cathars and Templars linked through the Order of the Secret Temple/OST was the first Gnostic church to be accepted by the French government. The organization is headed by Paul Sanda today and his lineage is linked to Jules Doinel, the bishop of a neo-Cathar church in Languedoc, France, and the librarian of Carcassonne. Dionel's heretical church was consecrated in 1890 at the home of Lady Caithness, wife of the earl of Caithness, Lord James Sinclair.
Well thank you for joining me and in closing, I will quote the wise words of MF DOOM- "Study your history, Whoever don't? I pity-the-fool like Mr. T, Knowledge: this degree, it ain't no mystery "What you gon' do" or "what you know" is what is to see."
-Mad Dashiell, signing off.