(ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY) -- It might have been the most risqué scene in The CW’s history had it aired uncut.
The pilot for 16th century-based castle drama Reign featured a steamy masturbation scene in the version that was sent to advertisers and media after the show made the network’s schedule last May. But the final cut of the episode that was recently sent to critics and will air on the network this week has been toned down.
In the sequence, the Queen of Scottland (Adelaide Kane) has joined her teenage ladies-in-waiting in France and attend a wedding. After the ceremony, they secretly spy on the newlyweds’ “bedding ceremony” — where the couple has sex before a group of elders who are present to ensure the marriage is consummated (more on this practice below).
The bedding is actually not the raunchy part. The moment that raised eyebrows among reporters at press tour this summer is what happens next: The aroused handmaidens scatter around the castle to find relief among various paramours. One of them, Kenna (Caitlin Stasey), assures she’s alone in a secluded stairwell, hikes up her gown, reaches under and starts … yep. Her self-pleasure is unexpectedly interrupted by none other than the King of France (Alan van Sprang), who smugly offers his assistance (“May I?”) and takes over.
All of this still happens in the premiere.
But now viewers see the barest suggestion of Kenna’s actions in a few quick shots, then king’s hand snatches hers from her lap. The moment went from a clear “I can’t believe they’re actually showing this” to “Was she doing what I think she was doing?” It still might inspire an outraged Parents Television Council press release (what doesn’t?), but probably won’t result in parents watching the show with their kids actually having to have any awkward conversations.
Interestingly, the new version also adds a couple scenes, and one is a quick shot of a man’s beheading complete with his neck stump spurting blood. So Reign may take on European history, but it’s content censors are definitely American.
Now about those bedding ceremonies. Continue reading via Entertainment Weekly...