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Recap / Sharpe S 3 E 3 Sharpes Sword

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Napoleon has dispatched Colonel Leroux to find and capture El Mirador, Britain's most important intelligence agent. It's up to Sharpe and his Chosen Men to find Leroux first and protect the British spy.

Tropes that appear in this episode:

  • Adapted Out: The Marchesa was written out of the episode and instead used, albeit in a completely different role, in Sharpe's Honour. She is Colonel Leroux's sister in the book. Her part in betraying the British is played by Sir Henry Simmerson, who doesn't appear in the novel.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Captain Spears is missing his left arm.
  • Attempted Rape: Sir Henry Simmerson tries to have his way with Lass, only to be stopped by Father Curtis.
  • Badass Grandpa: Father Curtis may be past his fighting days, but that doesn't mean he can't duel.
  • Badass Preacher: Father Curtis. In addition to his being an expert swordsman, as El Mirador, he also acts as the center of the British spy network in the region. Excellent singer, too.
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  • Bad Boss: Colonel Leroux shoots his captain to impersonate him.
  • Battle Trophy: Sharpe considers taking Loup's Klingenthal sword as one, but opts against it.
  • Being Tortured Makes You Evil: Leroux tortured Spears into betraying England.
  • Beware the Quiet Ones: Lass puts a coin down Simmerson's throat.
  • Big Bad: Colonel Leroux.
  • The Blacksmith: Harper when Sharpe's sword is broken in battle.
  • Blood Knight: After all these years, Father Curris still enjoys a good duel and is disappointed by Sir Henry Simmerson.
    God forgive me, but I wish it had lasted longer.
  • The Book Cipher: A book cipher plays an important role. The key text is Voltaire's Candide.
  • Bully Hunter: Invoked by Father Curtis, an Irish priest in Spain and British spymaster, who defends Lass from the lecherous advances of Sir Henry Simmerson. Simmerson asks why the priest would care, since as an Irishman he should hate the English and support the French.
    Curtis: John Bull's a bad neighbor, but Bonaparte's a bully, and so are you.
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  • Canon Foreigner: "Lass" is a character created directly for the episode.
  • Clothing Damage: Simmerson cuts Lass's clothes when he tries to rape her.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Colonel Leroux inflicts this on the priest and the nuns in the opening five minutes, which traumatises the Lass into silence for most of the episode. He also tortured Spears into betraying Britain.
  • Cool Sword: Harper suggests that Sharpe's wish to kill Leroux stems from desire for the latter's sword. It was able to break Sharpe's own Cool Sword.
  • Dead Person Impersonation: Colonel Leroux pretends to be his captain, allowing himself to be captured.
  • Duel to the Death: Between Sharpe and Colonel Leroux after Sharpe, the Chosen Men and the South Essex have stormed the fort at Villafranca.
  • Exact Words: Father Curtis tells the wounded Harper that yes, he's going to die, so he should be quick and marry Ramona while he has the chance. Notably, he never said when Harper was going to die.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Colonel Leroux is polite to the English officers during his time as a captive. Sharpe sees right through it.
  • Fighting Irish: Father Curtis.
    "I'm Irish. John Bull's a bad neighbor, but Bonaparte's a bully, and so are you."
  • Forging Scene: After Sharpe's sword is broken and he is grievously wounded, Harper Father Curtis (who was quite a swordsman, in his day) to give him one of the priest's collection of old swords, so he can fix it up into a proper replacement.
  • Handicapped Badass: Captain Jack Spears is missing an arm, but that doesn't stop him from being a dangerous fighter.
  • Hero Killer: Out of all previous villains, Leroux gets closest to killing Sharpe, severely wounding him and demoralizing him.
  • Heroic BSoD: Lass spends most of the episode in one after watching the death of the priest and nuns.
  • Hidden Agenda Villain: Simmerson refuses to name his motivations when confronted about betraying the fort attack to the French.
  • Irish Priest: Father Curtis, who turns out to be something of a badass.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Captain Spears' establishing scene has him riding out to fight a French company, flashing his sabre.
  • Living MacGuffin: Father Curtis is El Mirador, the number-one person on Napoleon Bonaparte's hit list.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Colonel Leroux is able to play Colonel Berkeley like a fiddle.
  • The Mole: Jack.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Lass is only ever known as the "Lass."
  • Praetorian Guard: Colonel Leroux serves in Napoleon's Imperial Guard.
  • Redemption Equals Death: After learning of Spears' treachery, Sharpe gives him a chance to regain his honor via a suicidal charge that will raise morale. Spears accepts the challenge.
  • Refuge in Audacity: Harris is in the library looking for a book that could serve as a key for a message he's trying to decode. When Sir Henry Simmerson asks him what he's doing in the library, Harris replies that he's looking for a book to wipe his butt.
  • Screams Like a Little Girl: Simmerson after he gets stabbed in the arm.
  • The Spymaster: El Mirador is Wellington's best spy in Spain.
  • Suddenly Voiced: Lass when Sharpe's fever finally breaks.
  • Torture Always Works: Sharpe takes offence when Wellington's latest spymaster says he is holding information in case Sharpe is captured and tortured. Sharpe says he would never talk and is rebuked with:
    "Don't be a fool, everyone talks on the third day."
  • Villainous Valor: We get a bit of this from Simmerson, of all people, who while hopelessly outmatched against Father Curtis stands his ground until disarmed and brutalised.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Colonel Leroux kills Ensign McDonald.
  • Wrecked Weapon: Sharpe's 1796 Heavy Cavalry Sword is broken halfway through the episode.

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