During Topcliffe’s investigation into the Catholic with the cut hand, Shakespeare promised Alice that he would not bring trouble to her door and endanger her, her family, or the rest of the company. The company was barely thriving as it was and they didn’t need a newcomer like Will throwing everything they’ve built into the gutter. However, in recent days, Shakespeare has attempted to steady himself and make amends to the Burbages through his writing, be it through the Midsummer Night’s Dream performance or the upcoming production of Richard III, the latter promising to fill the stands if nothing else. But on the season finale of Will, he’ll get to go even further toward repaying his karmic debt.
That’s because Alice remains in captivity at Topcliffe’s after being apprehended during her baptism. Should he find out about the hanging threat on the queen’s life during interrogation, she could be in more danger that she initially thought, making the time crunch Will and the company will be under once they find out the fate of their loved one all the tighter. What matters now is not a long-con play production meant to act as a thinly veiled critique of Topcliffe, nor the book written for the queen with the intention of bringing about religious tolerance in England; what matters is that they can get to Alice before Topcliffe has his way with her and changes her from the person they know and love. Though Alice is more than willing to die for her newfound faith, particularly if it means that the plan to take down the queen is still in motion and/or that she dies protecting Southwell, Will is simply not ready to let her go, not like this and not with the guilt he’d feel over his role in everything.
The season finale of Will airs Monday at 11:00 on TNT.
Can Shakespeare and the rest of the company save Alice? If she doesn’t find her freedom, would Shakespeare consider leaving London? How helpful is Richard III going to be in rooting Topcliffe from his position?