Plot: Despite Zorro's efforts, Estevan's engagement to Margarita continues, and they've come up with a plan they'd like Diego's help with. Estevan thinks Zorro is also in love with Margarita, but has noticed Zorro doesn't show up to keep Diego away from her. He proposes Diego take her on a ride towards the mission, while Estevan rides off in another direction. Then Estevan will double back and meet them at the mission, he and Margarita will get married, and Zorro will be out of luck. Estevan goes outside to see if he can convince Alejandro to attend, leaving Diego and Margarita to talk. Contrary to how I read the situation last week, Margarita seems quite taken with Estevan, and loves how much he enjoys life, which Diego agrees with. Then she says Estevan loves her, and Diego falls silent, causing her to question him as to whether he thinks that's true or not. Diego hems by saying Estevan loves everyone.
Bravo, Diego, nice save. *slow clap, rolls eyes*
Outside, Alejandro is still trying to convince Estevan he needs to take some land and prove himself as a haciendaro. When Estevan notes Alejandro didn't have to prove himself when he came courting Estevan's sister, Alejandro retorts that he was a De la Vega. Diego and his dad are making it pretty hard not to root for the young couple. Anyway, Alejandro offers Estevan some land and some cattle, to give him a chance to prove himself. Estevan agrees to try, but when he sees what he's getting - some land in the middle of nowhere, a rundown cabin with a well filled in with sand - his enthusiasm wanes. Alejandro and Margarita both play the, "Our fathers would have been ecstatic to start with this much" card, and Estevan asks for some time alone to think. The problem is, everyone else is thinking in terms of Estevan and Margarita starting a proud lineage together, and Estevan doesn't give a damn about a legacy. That night, he busts out his "florentavo" again, and makes a bet with Alejandro: double or nothing on the livestock Alejandro is planning to give him. And Estevan loses, then departs as Diego explains to his father it's actually a commemorative medallion, so there is not heads or tails. Meaning Estevan lost on purpose.
The next day, Diego tries to talk to his uncle, make sure it isn't the cattle he's marrying Margarita for, but Estevan does nothing to ease his fears. Rather than confront his uncle directly, Diego opts for vague threats that his uncle can't trick Zorro. Then he sets out to prove it, leaving his mark all around for Estevan to find (with Bernardo's help). And it seems to work. Estevan, though unwilling to admit Zorro's beaten him, decides that he is unworthy of Margarita, and must tell her he's calling the whole thing off. Mission accomplished then. But wait, Don Marcos comes to visit that night, because he can't find his daughter. Sure enough, she and Estevan met somewhere, and are on a carriage ride to the mission, escorted by Sergeant Garcia and Corporal Reyes. But along came Zorro, and despite the sergeant and corporal's best efforts - and they do make a game attempt to stop him - Zorro is able to get around them and stop the carriage. Estevan again tries to match swords with Zorro, and it goes no better than it did the last several times.
So Zorro rides off with Margarita, to tell her something, though we aren't privy to it. Still, he leaves her and the carriage at the mission, and takes his leave as Estevan catches up. And it's then, as they prepare to enter the chapel, Margarita drops a little bombshell on Estevan: It turns out she can only receive all that land as a wedding gift from her father if she marries a Californian, but surely Alejandro will give Estevan what he originally offered. At which point Estevan pulls the "unworthy" card again, and how he couldn't bear for her to live in poverty, and dashes off, using his florentavo one last time to procure a horse, the better to head for the hills.
Quote of the Episode: Alejandro - 'Zorro has done so many things against tremendous odds. Why can he not do a simple thing like sending Estevan back to Spain?'
Times Zorro Marks a "Z": 1 (9 overall). I'm not going to count the one on the plate, or the one on Estevan's forehead, because I can't be certain Bernardo isn't responsible for those.
Other: Diego and Alejandro didn't exactly show off their debating skills in this one. Between Alejandro's arrogant statement that he didn't have to prove anything to marry Estevan's sister, because of his last name, to Diego's unwillingness to just outright say what he's thinking to either Estevan or Margarita. I can understand not wanting to hurt the latter's feelings, but if he really thinks the former is only marrying her for the inherited wealth, then let him have it with both barrels. Don't play his game of tap dancing around it with talk of beautiful pictures, with very nice frames around them.
When the episode began, and Estevan was playing the piano and singing to Margarita, I thought she still didn't seem that in to him. But then she told Diego how much she loved being around Estevan, so what do I know? Maybe she just doesn't enjoy his singing and musical ability? I could see that. She probably gets serenaded by plenty of guys, it's nothing new to her. It's all the other stuff Estevan's done that interests her. Of course, he's not likely to get to do any of that if he's busy running a hacienda, or trying to get one up and running.
I suspected Estevan was not going to be impressed by the idea of starting on the process of building something that would last for generations, and sure enough, he admitted to Alejandro that a legacy didn't interest him. He just has different priorities from all these other folks.
I wonder what Zorro would have done if his trick with laying the candlesticks in the sala on the ground in a Z had been ignored. Estevan gets up and walks out of the room without noticing? I guess he'd have just tried again some other way. Which makes me wonder how many other attempts there were we didn't see, because Estevan never noticed them.
Anyway, bid farewell to Cesar Romero, he's off to seek his fortune elsewhere, and Margarita is free to try and convince her father to just let her run the family business, if she can't find a guy worth her time.