The story of Romeo and Juliet is a classic. We all know it. A forbidden love and secret marriage between a Montague and a Capulet - a violent feud that divides the city of Verona. William Shakespeare's story ends with Romeo and Juliet's death. Still Star Crossed tells the tale of all those left behind in the aftermath. Welcome to Still Star Crossed.
The story begins with the marriage of Romeo Montague and his true love, Juliet Capulet. Rosaline, Juliet's cousin and Romeo's cousin, Benvolio stand with them but they are very much against this marriage. After the ceremony, Romeo and Juliet must part but promise each other that they will each inform their fathers.
Verona's Prince Escalus is traveling home to be with his dying father. His sister, Princess Isabella is already there. It is his father's dying wish that Escalus follow his order that if a Montague or Capulet sheds the blood of the other, they will immediately be put to death. No matter the circumstance. Escalus promises that he will honor his father's wishes and put Verona first. Escalus is now the ruler of Verona.
Romeo returns home with Mercutio and Benvolio. His father, Lord Montague comes to greet them. He sends Romeo and Mercutio to breakfast, leaving Benvolio behind. Lord Montague is angry with Benvolio because he refused to marry the Minola family's daughter. Benvolio says he did not love the girl, but Montague doesn't care about that. It is a good match that will unite two powerful families.
At the Capulet's house, there's an argument between Lord and Lady Capulet. There is a ball for Prince Escalus, and they are arguing about whether Rosaline and Livia, her sister will be allowed to attend the ball. Both Rosaline and Livia are the daughters of Lord Capulet's brother. The Capulets took them in when their parent's died but as servants, not family. Lady Capulet hates the sisters and resents their presence in their lives. But Lord Capulet demands that they are allowed to attend the ball, and Lady Capulet gives in. As Lady Capulet tells the girls they can go, Juliet interrupts them saying she is too tired to participate in the ball and is going to bed to rest. As she leaves, Juliet whispers to Rosaline that she'll tell her parent's later.
While everyone is at the Prince's Ball, Romeo and Juliet can finally have their wedding night. Fireworks light up the sky and Juliet opens her balcony door for Romeo who climbs up to her window. This will consummate their marriage but it will be the only night they spend together.
Romeo reluctantly leaves Juliet to attend the Ball with his cousin, Benvolio. Tybalt, Juliet's cousin, picks a fight with Romeo and Benvolio but they do not engage. But Tybalt is bent on revenge on the Montegues for burning down Capulet fields. Romeo tells Tybalt he will not fight because they are now family. Tybalt just thinks Romeo is afraid to fight. He charges Romeo. Mercutio, who is Romeo's best friend but he is also a blood relative of Prince Escalus and Count Paris. Mercutio may be the only person in Verona who is welcome at the House of Capulet and the House of Montegue. Back to the fight - Mercutio jumps in to protect Romeo and is stabbed. As Mercutio lay dying, Romeo vows to Tybalt that he will kill him for what he's done. Romeo kills Tybalt. Mercutio's last words are "A plague on both your houses. Ask for me tomorrow and you will find a grave man."
The next day, Count Paris is meeting with Lord Capulet to negotiate a marriage between he and Juliet. Capulet gives his consent and Juliet's parents inform Juliet that she is to marry the Count. Juliet begs her parents not to make her marry the Count. She hasn't told her family that she and Romeo are married. Just then, Lord and Lady Capulet learn that Romeo has killed Tybalt and that he is on the run and will be killed when he is found.
Word of the deaths of Tybalt and Mercutio reaches Prince Escalus and his sister, Princess Isabella. The two argue about how Romeo's punishment. Their late father's wish that any blood shed between a Montegue and a Capulet result in death was clear. Isabella wants Escalus wants Romeo to be put to death but Escalus wants to handle it diplomatically and asks that Romeo be brought to him.
In a panic, Juliet turns to Rosaline to help her save Romeo. Rosaline tries to convince Juliet to marry Count Paris. But A panicking Juliet, pleads with Rosaline for help. Rosaline tries to convince her to marry Count Paris but Juliet tells her that she is no longer a virgin and it would be a sin to be wed to two men.
This is the part of the story that we all know. Rosaline and Juliet head to see the Friar who married Romeo and Juliet. Romeo and Juliet must flee Verona. The Friar gives Juliet a potion that will put her into a deep sleep. She will appear dead but the potion will wear off and she will wake. Juliet takes the potion and collapses. Rosaline hides the potion and screams for help.
Unaware of the plan, Romeo runs into Count Paris at the Capulet crypt. Count Paris tells him that Juliet is dead and he is mourning his lost fiance. Romeo tells Paris that he is Juliet's husband. A sword fight ensues and Romeo stabs Count Paris. Thinking he has lost Juliet, he swallows poison and dies. Juliet wakes to find Romeo dead and takes the rest of the poison.
At the funeral, Prince Escalus states that now that both houses have lost their heirs, it is his wish that this will be the end of the war between the two families. The Montague's unveil a statue given to the Capulets in honor of Juliet. When the cover is removed, the word "harlot" has been painted in red across it. Lady Capulet screams "a curse on the house of Montegue" and a fight erupts.
During the fight, Rosaline and her sister, Livia are separated. Rosaline is in the midst of the mob and is pulled to safety by Prince Escalus. It is immediately apparent that there is history between the two.
The fighting has ceased and Rosaline is returned safely home. Rosaline fears Lady Capulet and wants to flee Verona with Livia, her sister. Livia is angry when she learns that Rosaline was a witness to Romeo and Juliet's wedding. Livia tells Rosaline that she will not leave.
Rosaline is summoned to the palace but they are attacked and all the guards accompanying her are killed. A man pretends to be rescuing her but he pulls Rosaline into an alley and attacks her. She tries to get away from the man who is choking her. Benvolio swoops in and saves her. Instead of being grateful, she is annoyed that is was Benvolio that saved her but she thanks him anyway.
Back at the House of Capulet, Livia is walking through the halls and hears screaming. Following the screams, she finds a secret room and sees an injured Count Paris being cared for by Lady Capulet and a nurse. She is asked to leave but tells Lady Capulet that she knows how to treat him. Lady Capulet agrees to let her help.
As Rosaline enters the castle, she is greeted by Prince Escalus, Isabella and Lord Capulet. Is she loyal to the Capulet's and Verona, they ask? She is. Just then she sees that Benvolio is there as well. She asks Lord Capulet what is going on. Escalus is trying to find a way for the feuding families to end their aggression. Escalus then orders the marriage of Rosaline to Benvolio! She refuses and leaves.
The Prince chases after her. She asks Escalus why he would do this. Escalus tries to explain that its for the good of Verona. Escalus wants to get her back to the nobility as she was before her parent's died. Rosaline doesn't care about that and won't marry someone she does not love.
This is when we learn that there is indeed history between Escalus and Rosaline. She asks the Prince why he left years ago without saying goodbye. He tried but his father would not let him. Silently she moves toward Escalus and they kiss. But they are not alone, Benvolio has seen them.
That's my recap from the pilot episode. Stay tuned for my recap of last week's episode and a preview of Monday's new episode.
Rating for Still Star Crossed have been okay, but not great! #Reigniacs, please support Torrance Coombs as Count Paris is Still Star Crossed!