25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on 14 November 2008
As a history student in her final year at university, I can well understand why those who have a passion for history, and its accurate portrayal, may have problems with the liberties taken here. However, it's important to remember that Henry VIII was not always fat and old, especially during this period! In fact, in some of the very final scenes of the series, we can see how he will probably progress into being this more typical version, and I for one cannot wait to see if they can pull this transition off. The important thing to remember is that this is a tv show; not even a documentary, and therefore has not got an obligation to be 100 per cent factual all of the time, but to be entertaining for the audience. And anything that makes people who normally wouldn't be interested in history want to know more after they've finished viewing, has to have my vote.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Season 2 of the excellent series continues with Henry putting all his eggs in the Anne Boleyn basket, moving away from Rome and sacking the monasteries despite the annoyance of the Pope and the Emperor. It is not without cost to the king as his friend and mentor Thomas More will not swear the oath to the king, citing his conscience but paying the ultimate price for refusing to do so. As his new queen fails to produce a male heir, a chance encounter with Sir John Seymour's daughter, Jane, turns his head once again. The second Mrs Tudor no longer has the eighth Henry keeping her bed warm at nights and her status and slight neck is under great threat....
Continuing with the same high production values of the first series, this is a joy to behold and slightly improved even. The colours on BD jump to life on screen, particularly the reds of the Pope and his cardinals' cloaks and the greens and yellows at the jousting events. Rhys Meyers delivers again as the troubled, obstinate and determined monarch. O'Toole goes some way to filling the gap left by Sam Neill's Cardinal Wolsey, playing the pope with a glint in his eye but not getting enough screen time sadly. Plenty of sex, intrigue and political machinations revolving around the large cast of minister/enforcer Cromwell, the Duke of Suffolk, Arch Bishop Cranmer and the odious Boleyns keep the plot bubbling along nicely as per the first series. Highlights of the series are the dramatic execution of Thomas More and finally Anne Boleyn and her head part company (sorry if this is a spoiler!) at the Tower. Great stuff, very enjoyable though probably not too historically accurate.
Go for the BluRay if you can...
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 7 October 2008
Do people really know the Tudors. Yes this portrayal has it's inaccuracy's, but so do many films. Furthermore, most Historians of the period do not know exactly what happened either. That's what so fantastic about History, you have the facts but they are also open to interpretation. And that is what this series is all about, an interpretation of the truth. Someone else in the future will come up with something completely different that will wow or appal people.
As for the sex within the series I think that is the main thing that is portrayed accurately. Henry VIII is famed for his love of women and the fact that he had countless mistresses. Come on... the man was married six times for crying out loud so of course there is going to be sex!
I think this series is great and I can't wait to own it myself.
I cried my eyes out in the last episode, this is the first time I have seen properly the emotion and agonising that Anne went through while waiting to be executed. Usually it is head cut off move on to next wife. All I can say is well done for the whole series.
However... Henry has to start getting old and fat eventually? It will be interesting to see where they go with the series next.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
I just loved series No 2. It seems that with the characters the whole series has matured. And that in a very positive sense. It is still very entertaing and beautiful to look at. The acting is much more ion the forfront (compared to the mere naked pleasures of series no 1). All in all, it seems to be much more acturate and historically valuable (even tough I beliebe that Jane Seymour is a bit too gorgeous) Jonathan Rhys Meyers performance is superb. It was worthwhile seeing this series. Enjoy!!
61 of 68 people found the following review helpful
on 7 September 2008
I think a lot of people are missing the point when it comes to Micheal Hirst's take on Tudor England. Eyes have been rolling (as opposed to heads...), and it seems like everyone's set to condemn it purely because Jonathan Rhys Meyers didn't fatten up for the role, nor don a ginger beard and codpiece. Woe!
So there are some historical inaccuracies, and yes, there's a LOT of nudity - but no one's requesting the immediate burning of all the many biographies and history books concering the period, and asking the shelves to be replaced with DVDs of the sexed up version. This is a television programme! And I'm certain that this series has forced a fair few to get down to their library and look up what the tudors were really like.
Isn't anyone fed up of the cliche'd fat man with a fake orange beard, take on Henry VIII? This is a fresh new take on old school history for a new generation. Stunning sets, beautiful locations, a fairly 'educational' but entertaining script, great costumes and a young cast. Let's start seeing the tudors for what it is - enjoyable programming :)
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 16 October 2008
It's easy to disregard 'The Tudors' as a banal take on a very well known and perhaps over-told story. But it should NOT be disregarded on that count. The story as told in this production has been consistently fascinating, engaging and eminently watchable. The cast have been brilliant thus far: the many different perspective shifts have left you one minute feeling sympathy for Anne, then dislike for her atempts at machination, then feeling sympathy for her again. The final episode, detailing Anne's final hours, was beautifully crafted and tragically heart breaking in places.
Yes, we all know the facts, but why not allow yourself a moment of escapism and let the richness of the storytelling and the absolutely faultless beauty of the costumes and locations transport you for a while?
Like another reviewer here, I too wholeheartedly hope we get another take on the Plantaganets: 'The Warrior Kings' is long forgotten and we must be ripe for another series on what has to be potentially the most bizarre royal family in British history!
24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on 16 October 2008
I have to admit that I thought that both 'The Tudors' series took some really strong liberties with the truth, i.e. merging Henry VIII's two sisters into one woman. If they make a Queen Mary I and Queen Elizabeth I sequel, I'll be really interested to know how they'll explain away the existence of their cousins Lady Jane Grey and Mary Queen of Scots! The fact that they portrayed Henry VII as a brown-haired, slender, sex-crazed young man also had me in giggles. The costumes weren't the most accurate either.
But that didn't stop me from enjoying the two series, and I think this was better than the first one. It used some interesting reinterpretations of the court and politics of the time(and this comes from a history student) and it offered lots of drama and tension and tragedy as well. The acting seems to have gotten better too (on Jonathan Rhys Meyers' part at least) and I thought Natalie Dormer was outstanding as Anne Boleyn, especially in the last few episodes. I liked how they deliberately faded Natalie Dormer's looks as the series went on to show the stress that Anne was going through. And lastly, the costumes were very beautiful, and I think they conveyed the glamour of the court really well.
All in all: I really enjoyed it! It shows that history can be exciting and dramatic and personal, and I hope it'll encourage people to want to know more about the period.
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on 1 January 2009
This second season is certainly more sophisticated than the first, and feels more grownup: the sex has been slashed and the tale of Anne's downfall comes to the fore.
Her fall from grace is superbly executed (if you'll pardon the pun) in the heartbreaking penultimate episode: characters we have grown to know and love are broken before our very eyes. The final, horrific scenes of beheading after beheading of innocent men are awful to behold, and made all the more poignant by Thomas Wyatt's sombre poem being read over it. When poor Mark Smeaton's bruised and broken body is dragged to the block, you almost want to weep at the injustice of it all.
Natalie Dormer gives Jonathan Rhys Myers a run for his money this season in the acting stakes, though it's a shame we see less of the lovely Henry Cavill.
The Tudors is gripping, dark, intriguing stuff and beautiful to look at.
Ignore the snobs who slate this as being 'historically inaccurate' People daft enough to tune into a soap opera - as writer Michael Hirst described it - expecting a history lesson would probably berate EastEnders for not reflecting real London life. It's entertainment folks, and that's all. Ultimately if it gets younger people interested in history that can only be a good thing.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 27 January 2014
For me, this is the best season of The Tudors. This series follows where season one left off, beginning with the rise, and ending with the fall, of Anne Boleyn. Natalie Dormer, who plays Anne, is hands down the best portrayal I have seen of the figure, who manages to demonstrate Anne's scheming, passionate, flirtatious, witty and vulnerable sides all in one. She and Meyers (Henry VIII) also have amazing chemistry which just oozes from the tv screen.
This series sees the marriage of Anne and Henry, the birth of Elizabeth, the death of Catherine of Aragon, the execution of Thomas More, as well as the king losing interest in Anne, turning to mistresses and eventually Jane Seymour. While this series does not have as many sex scenes as the first series, the violence definitely steps it up a notch, personally I always have to fast forward the 'boiled alive' scene, as well as in episode 9 which sees the torture of Smeaton, one of Anne's alleged lovers. The last episode in the series, Anne's last episode, is one of the most powerful episodes I have ever watched in a tv series, and I find it hard to continue to season 3, with the series definitely losing a spark after the departure of Dormer.
The Tudors has been criticised for historical inaccuracies, such as Henry's appearance and the diverting from historical fact. If you can get past this and experience the series for what it is, you can appreciate the entertainment and dramatic value of the show. It has also got a lot of people interested in the real history, and that can't be a bad thing, can it?
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 31 May 2010
The 1st series set the stage, leaving our mouths open at the end. The 2nd series is now playing the cards and your jaw will drop. King takes Queen in this continuation of The Tudors. Showtime's dramatic series continues the conflicting plots with the same faces as before, as well as new ones. But things have changed...
The Boleyn family are now in power and Anne is firmly in the King's good graces. The sovereign lady, Queen Catherine has been displaced from her rightful position, but her stubborn faith and strong will continue to plague those in power until her end.
As King Henry and his new Queen, Anne Boleyn continue to reign England through a new era of almost chaotic turns, Rome takes a stubborn move as many people are forced to take the new oath, swearing King Henry as head of the church, to which The Pope (one of the many new characters of the series) does not take too kindly too. Many heads indeed roll in this series, but not too divulge all the shocks, this review will refrain from the naming of names.
To add to all the conflicts, there is a new face in the game, in the form of Lady Jane Seymour, who towards the end of the series, gradually becomes the king's new love as through a series of "unfortunate events" Anne is cast out and history takes its course. Jane Seymour has her own true intentions, in bringing Queen Catharine's daughter, Mary (who is now all grown up and just as strong as her mother) back to her rightful line as heir to the throne of England, and not the Princess Elizabeth (who is born in this series).
The series has set its course as one of the most popular to grace television in quite a while. With its intense drama that is not completely true to history, it never fails to disappoint. And as can be seen, the producers have set themselves in stone, for the time being. At the end of this series, you will see that the stage has been set for the third series that is soon to be in production next year, with 2 wives down and four to go, The Tudors is set to continue