Our Rating: ★★★☆☆
L Factor: Gender Bender
Short Take: Takeoff on the classic Three Musketeers story.
Alternate Titles:
Year: 2005
Duration: 60 min
Language: USA, Canada/English
MPAA: Not Rated
Starring: Tobias Mehler, Mark Hildreth, Zak Santiago, Robert Sheehan, Bruce Boxleitner, Michael Ironside, Karen Cliche, Andrew McIlroy, Phillip Mitchell

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Young BladesOne of the latest in a long line of takeoffs on the classic Three Musketeers story, this PAX television program follows four aspiring Musketeers in 17th century France. They defend their homeland and young King Louis (Robert Sheehan) against threats both inside and outside the country.

In the first scene of the series, we meet Jacqueline (Karen Cliche), a young woman with amazing swordplay skills and a dream of avoiding a dull marriage. To avenge the death of her father and to escape arrest, Jacqueline passes as Jacques and joins the Musketeers. Although her secret is in jeopardy many a time, only one of her fellow swordsmen knows that she is a woman, and she devotes her life to ‘fighting injustice wherever I find it.’

She is just one of the guys, usually sporting a fake goatee, and by episode five, Jacques has to deal with a woman who has fallen in love with him. Jacqueline was established as heterosexual in a previous episode, but it’s fun to watch her sweat the other woman’s affections.

The series is not a must see, but there are some nice sword fights, and Jacques is central to several episodes, including one in which he wins an invincible sword. As an interesting aside, singer Sheena Easton plays Queen Anne. (AB)