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Finale thoughts
June 21, 2010
2:16 pm
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Claire
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Ok, so what did you think of the finale? What are your thoughts on:-

  1. The plot against Catherine Parr – What about the look in Henry's eye when he gave Wriothesely that dressing down? Can you get any more manipulative than that?!
  2. Charles Brandon – I thought Henry demanding healing for him was moving and it showed Henry's God complex.
  3. The Queens – What did you think of the return of Catherine, Anne and Jane? Was it just me or was Henry regretting what happened to Anne?
  4. Henry's farewell
  5. Anne Stanhope/Seymour's treatment of Gardiner

and anything else you wish to discuss.

I thought it was a fitting end to a great show.

Debunking the myths about Anne Boleyn

June 21, 2010
6:44 pm
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Gentillylace
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Hi Claire!

Just saw the finale for a second time.

1. Plot against Catherine Parr (oops!) — That was mean of Henry, deciding to not cancel the arrest and then bawling out Wriothesley for daring to arrest Catherine, thus making her think that Wriothesley was her enemy. And Henry did have a weird glitter in his eye as he dressed down Wriothesley, I think.

2. Charles Brandon — I liked his talk with Edward Seymour: it seems to show that Charles is a medieval knight born a couple of generations too late. But then Charles came from humble origins: how could he have risen to a dukedom under the Plantagenets? I felt very sorry for poor Brigitte at the vigil when the Duchess of Suffolk (Katherine Willoughby, right?) came in. When the Duchess treated Brigitte as if Brigitte had never existed (apparently, Brigitte is a fictional character, after all), everybody else (including the Duke and Duchess's son, who had previously been friendly to Brigiitte; and including the servants, who had been loyal to Brigitte) treated Brigitte as if she was not there. That's what you get for being a mistress, not a wife, I guess Confused

3. The Queens — I wish there had been more and/or longer scenes with the ghost-Queens. Would have been nice if Catherine Howard had come along to haunt Henry as well, but the Queens who haunted Henry were the mothers of his children.

4. Henry's farewell — I thought it interesting that Elizabeth wasn't crying, while Catherine Parr and Mary were. Did you notice that at the end of the scene she goes away, leaving Catherine and Mary to console each other (yet they seem reluctant to do so — religious differences again?)?

5. Gardiner's comeuppance — I liked it! Did Anne Stanhope really have that kind of nerve? And did Edward Seymour really belt Gardiner during a Privy Council meeting? Admittedly, the historiography of The Tudors (insofar as it is historically accurate) seems to be fairly conventional. On second thought, I feel kind of sorry for Gardiner: did he really embezzle monasteries in Cornwall? Nice to know that he was a man of confidence during Mary's reign. (Thanks, Wikipedia!)

Assorted thoughts:

I did not like JRM's old man voice duriing the last two episodes: seemed as if he was trying too hard to sound elderly.

Would have liked in the epilogue to describe briefly what happened to the supporting characters (e.g., Gardiner, Wriothesley, Edward and Thomas Seymour, Cardinal Pole, Cranmer, et al), as well as Anne of Cleves and Catherine Parr. Ah well: that's what Wikipedia is for, because I didn't know before now what happened to Gardiner and Wriothesley Smile

And though Elizabeth I's reign is often described as the Golden Age, remember that there were Catholic priests and laity killed under her reign: I have heard Catholic apologists call Elizabeth “Bloody Bess”. I would have liked to see an acknowlegement that Mary's reign was not just turbulently killing Protestants, and Elizabeth's not just glorious and good.

Yours as long as lyffe endures, Katheryn

June 21, 2010
9:33 pm
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Sabrina
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I felt for Catherine Parr. I don't think Henry believed that she was trying to usurp his reforms and “teach” everyone. He looked tired and annoyed when Gardiner brought it up. Conceding to her husband was the only option she really had. The whole arrest warrant incident, I laughed… And when Gardiner pushed it, Risley was not going to put himself through that again.

I cried when Brandon died. And the treatment of his mistress was to be expected though. She had no rights over his wife, even though his wife was not around, and did not stand by him while he was ill. Oh well…

Henry trying to demand that Charles stay alive was a bit of a reach. He believed he had that “power”, but I think he knew that it was Charles' time to go.

I ABSOULTELY loved the sequences with the Queens. They finally stood up to him, and reamed him for mistreating their children. Catherine was great. That even in heaven, God said she was his true wife. The look on his face was priceless. When Anne's turn came up, I did tear up a bit. Seeing how proud she was of Elizabeth, it was very moving. And that she was the only one who tried to approach Henry says something. She professed her innocence again, and this time, I think he believed her. And she's the only one he asked to not leave. Jane speaking that way to Henry was something that you wouldn't expect, but was necessary. He did thrust Edward in too fast, and sadly, we know what happens.

Lady Seymour's treatment of Gardiner was honestly, appropriate. Yes she probably has as much feeling as a drop of water at times, but she did truly weep for Anne Askew. Gardiner was punishing people for being heretics, while he was embezzling from the King. Wolsey did the same thing almost, and look how he ended up. I'm glad he was banished from Henry's court. Something about him made me want to smack him with that bible he carried..

Henry's farewell was sad. Mary and Catherine cried, but Elizabeth stood her ground. He seemed relieved that she kept herself together, and I think he appreciated that she was like her mother at that moment. When Mary and Catherine were “consoling” each other, Elizabeth left. She always kept her own counsel, and at least they showed that part of her. Henry's voice bugged me too, I wanted to get him a glass of water.

I am very sad that this show has ended. There are volumes of material to work with, and they could've gone on to Elizabeth's reign. People would've watched it, I know I would've. Wink We could go on and on about Mary and Elizabeth's reigns, how they both killed others of the opposing religion. Remember Elizabeth did not like violence, and only executed when necessary. Mary, even though she thought she was doing the right thing, didn't think it through, and her people ended up resenting her in the end. Learning more about her, I do understand where she's coming from, but then again, I don't agree with persecuting people for their beliefs. Elizabeth had no “desire to make window's into men's souls”, and I agree. I don't care what you believe in, as long as you are a good person..

Ok, I'm off the soapbox now.. Laugh

Let not my enemies sit as my jury

June 22, 2010
9:35 am
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DuchessofBrittany
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1) I thought Joely Richardson played Catherine Parr as I imagined here: intelligent, passionate, and kind. I've always felt Catherine Parr was overshadowed by Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn. Yet, Catherine Parr did so much for Henry and his children. So could have been bitter by being denied a marriage to Thomas Seymour after Lord Latimer's death, but she took the position of Queen and Mother with a respect and graciousness that should be admired. Catherine Parr's ability to outwit Henry and Gardiner, among others, was one of the best scenes of season 4. Catherine Parr used “the weakness of her sex” to convince Henry she “needed to learn from him.” I only wish I had that much courage in the face of adversity.

2) I was sad to see Brandon go, even if he got on my nerves more that once. As Gentillylace noted, Brandon was from a difference time, and his response to Edward Seymour's questions reflected that. Henry calling Brandon to court spoke to Henry's ego and lack of remorse for other people's plight. But Brandon, always a soldier, went when his master called. I admit, you got to respect him for making an appereance.

3) Having Catherine, Anne, and Jane back was, for me, the highlight of the episode. While I wish the time they were on screen was longer, the wives got their points across, and left Henry with much to ponder, and perhaps regret (although I doubt Henry would fully understand any of these emotions). I liked how the three wives came back to see their children. The love of a mother never dies. While I loved Catherine and Anne, I loved Jane's apperance most. Now, I am no fan of Jane Seymour, but her chiding Henry was pure bliss. She told him what he needed to hear. The real Jane Seymour came through; a woman of intelligence and courage, no wallflower there. 

"By daily proof you shall find me to be to you both loving and kind" Anne Boleyn

June 22, 2010
3:12 pm
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Bambaleyn
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Have just watched the final two episodes, and I thought they were incredible, the finale in particular. JRM really and truly impressed me, at first I giggled at his 'old man' voice, but as age continued to creep up on him I just couldn't help but feel very sorry for him indeed, especially when he spoke of the good old days with Charles before he died. Henry VIII really was an icon, no matter how we may feel about certain aspects of his personality.

I thought that Henry seemed to quite relish the idea of giving Wriothesely a good tongue lashing – he seemed to have that glint in his eye. I'm so glad things turned out the way they did for Catherine Parr, as if he had been a much younger man, maybe it would have been a lot different, with her not having as her defence the fact that she was trying to take his mind off his pain and infirmity and him a lot less tolerant of his wives being outspoken towards him.

I was sad for Charles, and echo what others have said about him being born out of his time. It was nice to see him get a little piece of happiness at the end with Bridgitt, and while what happened at the funeral was perhaps understandable, I felt for her too.

I must admit, Katherine's appearance during the Holbein scene took me by surprise a bit – don't know why, I think I was just expecting the queens to appear when he was on his deathbed. I thought all the 'ghost queens' scenes were fantastic, if a little bit too short. It did seem that he listened to Anne when she said she was innocent and also that he began to call to her not to leave him – I think she was definately the absolute love of his life, his match in every way – and perhaps that was the problem all along – they were just too similar. And of course, always awesome to see Natalie Dormer again – and lovely to see them all in the opening credits for the last time.

I admit to bawling when the end came, I thought that was a really good way to bring the series to a close. That portrait says it all about Henry. What a powerful character he was, in both good ways and bad.

Now what do we do? So sad it's all over!

~ Team Anne ~

June 22, 2010
5:39 pm
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Bella44
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I don't know what were gonna do now its all over *sob!*

But yeah, I found the final far more haunting and emotional than I thought I would, down in large part to JRM's excellent acting, even if the old man voice was more than a little irritating!  I found the scene where Henry was trying to cure Charles strangely affecting and I wonder if it wasn't an attempt by the makers to portray just how delusional Henry had become in his whole God complex.  Charles' death certainly had me choked up though.  

The return of the wives with their children was wonderful if far too short!  It was nice they got to say their piece and i hope henry suffered similar pangs of conscience in real life!  It would've been nice though if they showed something with Katherine Howard and maybe an appearance by Anne of Cleves or something but, oh well Smile

A couple of things I found strange – Mary clinging to Catherine Parr for comfort when told they wouldn't be spending Christmas with Henry when only a few scenes before Mary had practically been gloating with Gardiner over Catherine's imminent fall.  It just didn't gel somehow.  And the scene with Holbein – an old and decrepit Henry telling a man who's clearly only in his mid thirties or so that he remembers Holbein painting his (Henry's) father and how terrible it was.  Timewise it makes no sense whatsoever!  Also Holbein by this point was actually dead himself…

Having said that, the lingering image of that iconic portrait with the little bird fluttering through the hall was a neat piece of symbolism to end on.

June 22, 2010
11:19 pm
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Impish_Impulse
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I'm not sure how I feel about them giving Henry an 'out' for Anne's death. When her ghost feistily asserted her innocence, his lack of response really seemed to surprise her and she quietly said, “I thought you knew…” I did like the depiction of their relationship still being so stormy and passionate. Definitely a case of “can't live with each other, but can't live without each other, either.” I liked that little smirk she gave him as she turned to leave, and the impression they gave that Henry was about to ask her not to go. “Anne, don't…” can also be interpreted as “let's not have this argument again”, so I'm not sure whether he was asking her not to go, or not to argue.

I liked the scene with Death coming for Henry. Lots of symbolism there. As you first see Henry looking down the 'tunnel' of trees with the sun shining, I thought, “Aha! He's going to 'go to the light'! LOL” Then, we see the sun rapidly setting, as a metaphor for Henry's life winding down. Then the sky turned to a night sky full of stars (and BTW, did those constellations look really fake to anyone else?), and it made me wonder whether it symbolized the end of his life, or if there was something more being suggested by his 'going to the light' no longer being an option. Loved Death On A Horse, his sword raised! That's straight out of The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, and just how Henry would have expected it, no doubt. 

                        survivor ribbon                             

               "Don't knock at death's door. 

          Ring the bell and run. He hates that."    

June 24, 2010
4:51 am
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Hannah
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1- I cannot feel sympathy for Wriothesley. He betrayed just about everyone he ever got close too (in reality)

2- This fictional Charles Brandon was an utterly loathesome character, but even I wept over his death scenes. So moving!

3- The return of the Queens was something I was dreading anyway. But it wasn't so bad. It was great to see Anne Boleyn again.

4- Henry's farewell was a bit flat. He just sort of waddled off screen, never to be seen again. Sorry, but that weird dream where Henry appears young? That “death” figure on horseback reminded me of Tim Burton's character, Jack Skellington.

5 – I hated the portrayal of the Seymours' in general. Showing the mild-mannered Edward Seymour involved in brutal acts of torture was a pointless slur. Plus the actor is a bit wooden, but to compensate, he is relatively good looking.
Anne Stanhope's portrayal has been equally fictional. She was not a bed hopping, harlot.
BUT- her reaction to the arrest warrant was pure class!!  Edward Seymour also compensated by thumping Gardiner and calling him a “puffed up, porkling of the Pope's”. Again, pure class. I just wish it really happened!

A note on the dream sequence. I have had the whole thing ruined by embittered Katherine of Aragon supporters. I have seen a few discussion boards where KoA supporters are complaining bitterly, first because Natalie Dormer appears in the opening credits before KoA, and secondly because her gohstly reapperance lasts for 50 seconds (time it!) longer than KoA's! Seriously!Surprised

Be daly prove you shalle me fynde,nTo be to you bothe lovyng and kynde,

June 25, 2010
10:18 am
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Sabrina
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they are nitpicking over screen time? are you serious?

Let not my enemies sit as my jury

June 25, 2010
11:27 am
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Hannah
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More than that, they are getting seriously offended, and posting long and detailed rants all over the internet about it!

Be daly prove you shalle me fynde,nTo be to you bothe lovyng and kynde,

June 25, 2010
4:50 pm
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Sabrina
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that's insane..it's a tv show.. it wasn't like they wrote this from fact.. OMG..

Let not my enemies sit as my jury

June 25, 2010
8:17 pm
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Impish_Impulse
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Sabrina said:it wasn't like they wrote this from fact…


OK, that's the funniest post I've read all day! Even funnier that it is, unfortunately, true. Yes, I know you were referring to the spirits of wives past, but your statement could be true for the whole series as well.

                        survivor ribbon                             

               "Don't knock at death's door. 

          Ring the bell and run. He hates that."    

June 26, 2010
1:12 pm
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Sabrina
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HAHA Impish!

I know people take this seriously.. But come on! Getting upset because Anne had more screen time than Catherine is honestly ridiculous.

Let not my enemies sit as my jury

June 28, 2010
12:21 am
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Claire
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Some people really do need to get a life don't they?! I just can't believe that, it's a TV show! What is the world coming to?!

Debunking the myths about Anne Boleyn

June 28, 2010
12:59 am
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joeyramone
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I surprised myself by getting upset at Henrys death – I really thought I wounld not shed a tear but I did. LOVED the scene with Anne and Elizabeth and the fact he asked her not to go – very telling.  Loved how Elizabeth walked away from him without shedding a tear he deserved that.  I have adored HC as Brandon and cried a lot at his death.  I thought they showed Henrys arrogance well there when he commanded him to live – and then the next scene is his death! Loved what happened to Bishop Gardiner and was pleased how Catherine Parr was portrayed.  Some other boards are bitching about her calling what she did a copout – seriously it was all about survival. How can anyone begrudge her that when she planned to outlive her husband and find happiness again.  Natalie Dormer is outstanding and her scene was the highlight.  I like the Seymour brothers and the scene with Anne Stanhope and the Bishop was great.  Overall it was one of the best episodes of the series.  On another note I was sad to see Chapuys at the end and could not believe that Henry made him kneel – the poor man could barely walk it was horrifying what he did to him. I used to hate Chapuys because of what he said about Anne but over time grew to like him.  I am not a fan of Mary but it was interesting to see her fanatacism showing.  Loved Surrey and could not believe what they did to him.  Loved the queen secquence except for Jane as I truly hate her but have to admit liked that she was mean to him. KofA was good too.

 

Claire I agree with you that he was regretting what happened to Anne – she was the only one he wanted to stay and the look on his face when she defended her innocence suggested to me that he knew she was innocent. I think ND is an amazing talent and it was interesting to see her so young vibrant and beautiful where he was this sick nasty old man.

June 29, 2010
12:31 pm
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Sharon
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I loved the finale.

The dressing down of Wriothesely was priceless.  The look Catherine gave Henry after that seemed to show that she didn't like Henry all that much.  At least that's the way I took it.  Catherine did the only thing that she could have done in her situation.  Had she given Henry her true feelings at that moment, she would have been arrested the next day by Wriothesely and more than likely beheaded.  Instead she outlived him and married the man she truly loved.  Her book was also published. (Lamentations of a Sinner) If she had lost her head, I doubt very much that would have happened.

Gardiner-very happy to see him tossed out of court.  Sabrina, I'm with you.  I wanted to hit him with that bible he carried.  And kudos to the Seymours for their treatment of Gardiner.  I wasn't crazy about the way Anne Stanhope was being portrayed, but she was redeemed in the last two episodes. 

Charles-This man was Henry's childhood playmate.  They had been together all of their lives and Charles was loyal to a fault. Even when he was dying, he answered the King's call.  When Henry tried to save him by placing his hands on Charles, I believe Henry thought he could actually cure him.  Kings were said to have the power to heal, and they truly believed they had it.  It was such a sad scene.  He was trying to save his only friend.  God complex? No doubt about it.  But not the first time this complex shows up with Henry.  Charles' death was a tear- jerker.  The missing Duchess finally showed up.  Poor Brigitte.  In France she would have been grieving right beside the Duchess.

The scenes with the Wives-This was perfect.  Katherine never giving up even in death her right to be Henry's wife.  He didn't seem too happy when she said she was right all along.  Anne-so very proud of her daughter.  Henry seeing Anne in Elizabeth.  Henry not wanting Anne to go.  And Jane-finally showing some moxy.  I really enjoyed her scene. 

Elizabeth-walking away after Dad told them he was sending them to Greenwich.  If she was upset knowing he was dying, she certainly was not going to show it in front of the rest of the court.  Or was she angry?  I wasn't sure.

I thought the end was brilliant.  Im so glad they didn't have Henry in bed dying.  I liked that the Horseman came for him with sword in hand.

I didn't have a problem with Henry's voice.  JRM was portraying a very large, very sick man.  When my uncle was ill at the end of his life, he was huge and very ill like Henry.  His voice did change because of his weight and his inability to breath correctly.  I thought it was a nice touch by JRM.

October 27, 2010
4:40 pm
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TinaII2None
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I'll comment more when I have the time (I have to leave for work soon), but I just finished the series finale and I haven't cried so much since Anne was executed. What a great final episode and a great ending to a memorable, unforgettable show. No matter how many times I complained about someething being historically inaccurate, by the end of the first season, I was so hooked it didn't matter anymore. And despite knowing that Henry was a first-class tyrant, watching the dying man staring at the iconic Holbein we all know so well — a part of me was almost sorry to see him go. I'm just sorry The Tudors as a series won't go on….

Anyway, I'll have more to comment on later. I want to read some of the other comments on the thread to see what many of you thought as well (and if I get time, I might like to see the last 2 episodes again).

And by the way — Natalie Dormer rocks! Laugh

Henry: Mistress Anne, will you teach the king of England how they dance in the French court?
Anne: There is nothing that France can teach England, your majesty.
King Henry VIII: Well said. Well said.
– Anne of the Thousand Days (1969)

October 27, 2010
5:14 pm
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TinaII2None
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I was just reading the comments about some fans on other boards arguing over screen time between Katherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn, and half of me is LMAO while another part of me isn't surprised. Claire — you're right. Some people have no lives, and while I've been studying the Tudors for years and have been a fan of the series since it started, I know how to draw the line between what is my own life and what is “fiction”. But others get into things so deeply that it no longer becomes a study to them, or a hobby, or an interest or a movie/TV series to savor and enjoy, or something fascinating to read, but something that begins to eat at them so deep that it fills the emptiness they believe they have. And that's very sad.

I've been a member of another fandom for about ten years or so (I'll keep it nameless), and I have never seen so much flaming, backstabbing, forming of cliques and out and out name calling in my life, to the point that many have dropped out of it because — instead of having fun and enjoying chats about a subject we all love and share — they have been hurt and driven away on some levels. Not all of the groups in the fandom are that way, but some are eaten up with it to where you wonder if they have lost all sense of reality. It is what I love about your group Claire — from the moment I joined, I've felt very welcomed and have enjoyed the fellowship with all of you; even when we disagree on something, we are polite and mature, and that makes you want to support the group as much as you can!

Anyway, I'm still LOL about the Team Katherine of Aragon, Team Anne (and I guess Team Jane too). I know they're not saying that (I guess they're not) but you feel like it is! It almost goes back to what I've said about Philippa Gregory and her seeming hatred for a woman who has been dead since 1536! IT'S OVER! IT'S PAST! We're talking real people and real history. Get over it and get a life. And if anybody's got a right to complain about screen time for Dead Queens, it's Catherine Howard! She didn't get any! Smile

Henry: Mistress Anne, will you teach the king of England how they dance in the French court?
Anne: There is nothing that France can teach England, your majesty.
King Henry VIII: Well said. Well said.
– Anne of the Thousand Days (1969)

October 28, 2010
6:00 am
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Anne
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I was thrilled with the Tudor's last episode but also kind of disappointed because I expected too much of it!

1)Catherine Parr as played by Joely Richardson is my favorite to date.My biggest complaint when I see Catherine cast,is that she is always played by women in their late forties when she was only 32 at the time of their marriage.I mean,why Anne (whom if you take the 1501 birthdate was also 32 at her marriage)is always shown as a 20-something woman and Catherine a much older woman.Mrs Richardson although well into her forties as well,she can beat any 30 year old actress because she is so beautifull,so classy and charming.Henry falls for her,as she is intelligent,beautifull,classy,a perfect Queen Consort,always dressed to impress,matronly,a keen reformer.She is not shown once as a nurse but as a companion.Her acting was great and I love the fact that they show the difference of her and K.Howard.While the later didn't pay much attention to Anne's tragic path (and inevitable folllowed it herself),Catherine is aware of the dangers awaiting her and she feels the axe breathing on her neck anytime.So,even through she is in great danger,she manages to get through his tests and whims.As for Henry's dressing down of Wriothesely,something tells me that he didn't intent to arrest Catherine,more likely to teach everyone(especially Catherine and Gardiner)that he was still in charge and that if anyone raises his head too high,he can always take it off.

 

2.Charles Brandon was one of the main parts of the series.If we take the series to heart,perhaps he was the closest to a brother and friend that Henry had.I was disappointed though with the whole Catherine thing.I wanted to see her more developed in season 4,her relationship with Charles(for whom,as shown in the series was his great love),her friendship with Catherine Parr,her protestand ideas and even a romance with Henry or a little bit of rivalry between Henry and Charles.Or at least the rumors for a seventh wive.I didn't really buy the whole Brigite romance and I so much preffered another actress to take over Catherine's part(they 've done it with Jane,who was a major character!)

I think the bit where Henry orders Charles to heal is great.It explores in one minute both Henry's god-like complex and the dynamics of their relationship.

 

3.My biggest pleasure and disappointment was the return of wives.First of all.BIG disappointment over not showing K.Howard.When they first show her dancing in that corridor,dressed in white I was over my head with joy,because I waited for them to play the ghosts story(the gallery at Hampton Court).I was excited because the wives return would look like this and I love the spooky and ethereal view of it.The actual scene with Katheryn was great(her dancing and words over those to be executed)but I was really disappointed with the fact that they didn't show her.On the actual ghostly-wives scene:I believe they were more creations of his consience than ghosts,mostly because of what they said to him

Katherine of Aragone:Although I wanted her to tell him that it was because of Mary she insisted on their marriage and not because she loved him,I liked what she(as his consience)told him.She confirmed to him that no matter what he or his church said,he was no God,and while he had got rid of her,she was his wife.Also,the fact that (we have already seen this in season 2)he still felt remorse over his treatment of her and his fears(which proved to be real)that with his treatment,he had destroyed Mary.

Anne Boleyn:The scene I 've been waiting to see since the end of season 2!I don't know what I expected of this scene but I know I would never be pleased because of my high expectations of it.I  liked also the fact that she served as his consience.The fears and and qualms he had about whether Anne was guilty or not,over his treatment of her and that(like Jane and Katherine)he didn't support her enough.Also he feels remorse over the fact that he wasn't a good father to Elizabeth and the resentment he showed the girl because of what he believed her mother done to him.I loved how his worst fear is confirmed:that he murdered the woman he loved while she was innocent.And I simply love his plea to her(to stay a little longer?to stop tormenting him?not leave him?).For the Tudors verse,I think Henry's love was Anne and while he was into the same situation twice(don't forget that for the Tudors,he believed the charges and the betrayals),with Katheryn he was ruthless but with Anne,he suffered and got heartbroken over her betrayal.

Jane Seymour:Well,the truth is that I didn't know what to expect since they didn't do much for Jane as a character.I simply loved her scene because for the first time it showed that Henry loved only the idea of Jane and not the real Jane.The way he breaths her name(JJJaaaane,just like in season 2)shows the great esteem he had for her,like something sacred.And then Jane,snapped!Jane was not just a sweet-tempered,low-speaking wife.She was an intelligent,thoughtfull woman who had to shallow her pride,her temper,her thoughts,her personality in order to survive…And now,she will have none of it!She will tell him exactly what she thought of him,his upbringing,the way he treats her son,everything(GO JANE,GO!).And for the first time he sees the real Jane and what she thought of him.And he sees his failure in the upbringing of his heir,his only son.

 

4.Henry's farewell was a little,I don't know.it was too small…But I was intrigued with Elizabeth's reaction.My best friend,with whom I saw it,has said that this is exactly Henry's fear,what he said to Anne:That he was proud of Elizabeth but he couldn't love her as she deserved to because everytime he saw her she reminded him of Anne and what she 've done to him.And this was something Elizabeth knew(that her father not only was responsible for her mother's fate and her own bastard status,but also that he couldn't bring himself  to love her)something which pained her a great deal and in the end she was so distanced,that she couldn't bring herself to love him…Others say that it was her pride and calm demeanor which not allowed her to mourn in public…But I am intrigued with the first option,that Elizabeth did not feel much love for her father,a father that taken from her,her mother,her stepmothers,her title,her status,who forgot her,who treated her sometimes with resentment.And her later distrust in men can be explained to the fact that the most important man in her life had treated her and all the women around him(esp. his wives and daughters)like this

 

Lastly,I loved the end,where he stared at the portrait(and the comparisson between him and the man in the portrait)and saw the events of his life,the events that perhaps not many will know(his small romantic moments with Anne,Jane,Katherine that history will never been known,his friends,his children etc)but that have made him the legend he became

October 28, 2010
10:23 am
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TinaII2None
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Anne — I enjoyed your comments and they've helped me in trying to form my own thoughts regarding my feelings towards the final season and the final episodes. I may be rambling for a while with all of this, but let me try to start and not in any particular order.

– I not only enjoyed Joely Richardson's Katherine Parr,but (as you did Anne), I was so happy that finally we were seeing Katherine as I imagine she would have been at the time of her marriage to Henry. Rosalie Crutchley who played opposite Keith Michell — I'm sorry…too old and dour and not at all attractive; I don't remember her smiling once. The woman who was Charles Laughton's Katherine was in the movie less than 5 minutes and did nothing but complain about Henry's overindulgence. I can't even remember the others. So Ms. Richardson was a breath of fresh air, and was so much as I've imagined Katherine, that I liked her from the moment she appeared in a scene. She is attractive and charming, with a beautiful smile (my favorite Katherine portrait is the one we once thought was Jane Grey); revealing her intelligence and education and proving a real Queen. After two disastrous marriages, she tells Henry she still believes that love is possible. You see the fear and reconciliation of her fate when she is given the King's proposal…and I loved that finally, we see Katherine not just as wife, but loving stepmother with a strong faith in the New Learning. I admit — I cringed when I heard her debate with Henry, not because I necessarily disagreed with what she was saying, but out of concern for the character. You catch that suspicious glint in Henry's eyes after she presents him with her translation, dedicated to the old SOB, but he picks out a few things he's possibly not happy with, conveniently forgetting that Katherine has declared him her inspiration and a Moses to his people. The moment when she reads the warrant — I knew how it would end but Ms. Richardson plays it so well, that I was still afraid for her. When she appears before him, like  Esther before Xerxes, she's literally pleading for her life without letting Henry know that she knows what he had in mind, so to some on other boards who say she copped out — hell, she played a fantastic chess game; her Queen wasn't captured and the other pieces around her were the ones that were defeated. My only regret is that Katherine didn't have a longer and happier life, but that's another story for another day. I'm just thankful to finally see a more realistic Katherine Parr.

– A few years ago, I read a book only about the final years of Henry's reign. What he did to not only Katherine, but Gardiner and Wriothesely seems similar to some little “games” he played with others, including Archbishop Cranmer and Cardinal Wolsey, seeming to take them to the edge of doom — and then changing his mind OR letting them dangle into their destruction. It's cruel, it's ugly, it's vindictive and typical of a tyrant. To see Katherine afraid again, after she thought everything was all right, and then Henry playing saviour and knight in shining armor, coming to his wife's rescue….This is the kind of thing that makes me hate him. And yes, I saw that look in his eyes when that hateful little Wriothesely went scurrying away. I don't know, was it “See…I've still got it!” As for Gardiner (who I remember was a descendant of Jasper Tudor, Henry's great uncle) — watching him squirm was one of my favorite moments. (Hard to believe that Simon Ward once played a young Winston Churchill LOL). And it might not be historical, but as much as I've disliked Edward Seymour, having him punch Gardiner out was another great moment!

– I have never been a fan of the historic (or fictional) Anne Stanhope, although I knew that at one time, she was a member of Katherine's circle devoted to the New Learning. I just remember the massive disagreements after Henry's death, when Anne thought herself first woman in the kingdom and demanded the royal jewels from Katherine, the Queen-Dowager. She always historically struck me as an arrogant, overly ambitious…okay I'll say it “she-wolf.” And of course we've seen her jumping from one bed to another (and sleeping with her brother-in-law) in the series (but this whole series had that LOL) — not sure that was the real Anne. But seeing her show sympathy for Anne Askew surprised me (I'd already seen on Wikipedia that gunpowder was placed around Askew's neck so her suffering would quickly end, so working in a storyline with Stanhope showed a side of her I didn't expect). So what did I think of the scene between Anne Stanhope and Gardiner — I LMAO! She gave the charges a look, played her cards, and walked out of there triumphant! All I could say was “You go girl!” LOL (And she's a survivor — she lived to be 90, dying in 1587). The look on Gardiner's face was priceless!

– I have been such a fan of Sarah Bolger's acting, and while we start to see Mary becoming the Mary we know in history — determined to stamp out the Reformation and return England to the Church in Rome. She is resolute when she tells Chapuys she will burn as many heretics as necessary. She (sadly) seemed almost ecstatic at the possible downfall of her latest stepmother, a woman she once called a friend and who has shown her nothing but love. It was an ugly side of Mary that I didn't like, but realized all of , this was a preface to her sad future. But kudos to Ms. Bolger for giving us a three-dimensional Mary. (Do you all think she could have continued to play Mary up and through her reign or would they have needed to cast an older actress? One that usually looks like some hunchbacked unsympathetic old drone constantly fingering her Rosary. I've yet to see a portrayal of Older Mary that didn't make me cringe).

– Henry's farewell to Katherine and his children: for not the first time, I could see Henry looking at Elizabeth and seeing her mother, and wishing/wanting to be a better father to the girl (too late). As for her reaction to her father's eminent departure, and not participating in the “group hug” — I think, as she often did, she wanted to keep her own counsel, not wanting anyone to see her cry if she did. (Although in reality, when Elizabeth and Edward were told that there father was dead, both children were said to have wept almost hysterically until Elizabeth remembered her place as older sister and then saluted her brother as her King). I know Elizabeth loved Katherine, but it was weird seeing Mary and Katherine comforting one another when Mary has been nearly conniving with Gardiner and the Catholics at court. Maybe Elizabeth thought it was weird too LOL Anyway, I was glad she just eased away, looking very much the future Virgin Queen.

– As arrogant and proud of his noble race as he is, I sort of (stressing sort of LOL) felt bad for Surrey, but he was playing a dangerous game and with the (equally as ambitious) Seymours on top of it. The actor was WAY too old for the role though: http://www.luminarium.org/renl…..nrybio.htm and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H….._of_Surrey, but I enjoyed his defense to his peers. The way he was to be executed though surprised me since he was a member of the nobility and an ancient family — hung, drawn and quartered? (Wiki says beheaded only). And take a look at that tomb: http://www.tudorplace.com.ar/B…..(E.Surrey).htm. I haven't seen a lot of chatter about Surrey — maybe I've missed it. What did you all think of him?

Okay, I've thrown a lot out here and I'm going to stop for now. I still need to respond about Charles Brandon, Henry's final days, and most of all, the Ghost Queens scenes.

Oh LOL 😀 one more little thing. When I first heard that they were going to have cameos by Katherine, Anne and Jane, I half-imagined the “ghost scene” in I, Claudius, when Claudius is in his last days and “sees” the ghosts of Tiberius, Augustus, grandmother Livia and Caligula. Every time I see the last 10 or 15 seconds of the episode openers, especially in Season 4, you glimpse the faces of all the people that have played a major role in Henry's life, going all the way back to the first season. I had to slow it down frame by frame once to try to catch them all: Cromwell, Wolsey, More, Katherine of Aragon, Anne Boleyn, Jane Seymour….Since my idea of Henry's Hell is to be tortured by his victims forever, too bad there couldn't have been some time for all of them to have a cameo. Laugh

Henry: Mistress Anne, will you teach the king of England how they dance in the French court?
Anne: There is nothing that France can teach England, your majesty.
King Henry VIII: Well said. Well said.
– Anne of the Thousand Days (1969)

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