Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The Tudors - TV Series

It's unfortunate that I am very familiar with Tudor history, because I knew by the first season that the show would end when King Henry VIII did. The reason being that some of the characters in this show were composites of two or more people, and some of the missing historical figures assured that important contenders for the English throne would never exist to challenge his children.

There was a lot of that sort of historical tinkering in the series, but it did not prevent me from enjoying it as a dramatic "based on" television show. I was actually impressed by some of the kinky little details that they did include - things that aren't often mentioned in the average history books.

The series takes a look at the life of the infamous Henry VIII from a young man up to his death. We meet all six of his wives and those who were closest to him. And if you know anything about his reign, you know that many of those wives and friends have tragic endings.

Because the series takes an intimate approach to the king, there is an awful lot of sex. One place where I do feel they fell short was during the last season when Henry was presumably getting well on in years and falling victim to obesity and ill-health. Johnathan Rhys Meyers, who plays the king, simply cannot be made up to look like an ugly, fat old man. They try to make up for this by drawing attention to a festering wound he has that will not heal, but it still doesn't quite give viewers the idea that his later marital bedroom romps weren't pleasant to watch.

The show gets bloodier as Henry gets older and grouchier, which keeps the tension up nicely both in the royal court and for everyone living anywhere remotely near it. However fictionalized, the settings and characters are believable and make for a nice dramatic story.

True history buffs are likely to get a bit upset at how they dispose of some characters, but if you can get past the creative liberties it is a fun show to watch. To be honest, I would have liked to see them continue on through the reigns of his three children, but because of the aforementioned liberties that would have been difficult to do.

Info on IMDB: The Tudors

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