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24 August 2010 @ 07:58 pm
The End of The Tudors....  
I posted about Doctor Who, but I forgot to mention that I also recently finished The Tudors before starting to watch DW in earnest! :) Upon finishing Bones season 5 last month, I began to slowly work my way through the 4th and final season of The Tudors, and I finally finished about a week or so ago.  Here are my spoilery thoughts on the finale and the season on a whole...

Overall I enjoyed this season much more than last season on the whole, though I did miss James Frain’s wonderful Cromwell (at least I have been able to get a James Frain fix on TB though!). The finale was especially amazing and beautifully done, and so emotional too….I loved the crazy creepy artsy dreams, seeing the first three wives again (so exciting to see them in the opening credits!), and the flashbacks, gah! (I’m such a sucker for flashbacks). While I wish the series could have continued with at least the next Tudor or so (Edward’s reign would have been so interesting, and so many of the characters were still around then, it would have been cool to see their stories play out), I also think this is a great conclusion to the series in of itself (I can’t think of a more effective finale), and that perhaps it was good to quit while they were ahead…

Against all odds, I actually found Catherine Howard’s story to be interesting, as much as I dislike the character in general! She was very annoying (especially with that horribly obnoxious giggle, ugh!), but at least she wasn’t creepy (which I found both the BBC Six Wives CH and more recent AE CH to be), and I could see clearly what they were doing with her. I think that they portrayed just how young and foolish she was very well, she was indeed only a teenager when she married Henry, totally overwhelmed and swept off her feet by it all, and totally immature and self-absorbed, and the show displays this perfectly! The only big issue I have is that of course in reality Henry was by then a decrepit old man, not the still young and attractive enough JRM (even if he pretends to be all tired and limp and lame on the show), and it seems he was most likely impotent at that time—certainly not wrestling around in bed with Catherine like eels night after night! I guess it’s impossible on this show to have Henry not having sex at ALL, lol. But it does take away one sympathy pointer for Catherine, that she was forced to marry and bed this gross, fat old man old enough to be her father/grandfather, since she seems to be able to get plenty of sexual satisfaction in this version! Additionally, it makes it look more like it’s HER fault that there were no children—like she was infertile or something—rather than it being because Henry was impotent in bed, which is most likely the case. But in short, I think she may be the best Catherine Howard portrayal I’ve seen yet—she’s a ninny, yes, but so was the real figure! I also appreciate the fact that they chose to actually portray Culpepper as he was (that rape/murder scene apparently happened IRL!), and Jane Boleyn’s character really grew on me this season, poor woman!

I am sad that Mistuh Henry Cavil Brandon’s wife remained cold and distant towards him, since they were pretty much my favorite couple on the show. :( Brandon at least remained one of my favorite characters this season, I’m so glad he stopped being an immature arse in the beginning of season 2, and Cavil is so great in the role. I liked how his arc finished too, I liked the story with the French mistress, and his death was so sad, but well done. A new pairing that kind of replaced Brandon/Catherine as my favorite Dynamic Duo was Edward Seymour and his wife, who couldn’t be more different from B/C in terms of love and affection, but who also made a formidable political team that I found quite enjoyable to watch. I think I liked Seymour’s wife a lot more without the totally irritating Bryan around….she was quite badass and fun this season!

I have said elsewhere that I was thrilled to see Sarah Bolger made a regular in the opening credits this season, and for the most part I continued to be quite happy with her portrayal of Mary, my favorite character on the show. Towards the end some of the writing of her made me roll my eyes a little (I doubt she’d be talking about spilling the blood of hundreds of heretics at that point, at the beginning of her reign she didn’t even think initially, it would seem from the evidence, that there were more than a handful of bad influencers who might need to be taken out!), but otherwise I enjoyed seeing her get more screentime. Her scenes with Chapuys were so lovely, and were the ones that made me tear up the most; you could just see how miserable and lonely she was! ;_; I have long loved Chapuys on the show, and her friendship with him, so I was sad to see him gone . I kind of liked her little Team at the end, though I was kind of surprised though at how randomly Sir Richard Rich (Mr. Reformer who helped bring down More and was all supportive of Cromwell and his reforms) suddenly was all on her side and Team Old Religion/Church….:s I dunno why they did that….

As for Elizabeth, I have to say, that was the oldest-looking 7-year-old I’ve ever seen! /rolleyes/ It’s like the opposite of Mary as a child, when they kept the 7-year-old-looking actress to keep playing her even when she was a teenager in season 1. So that kind of annoyed me, as well as the continuing running “oh, isn’t Elizabeth so much more awesome than Mary because she’s much friendlier to Henry’s subsequent wives?” gag they did with Anne of Cleves and Catherine Howard. Cleves is one thing, but in the case of Catherine Howard I think Mary was perfectly justified in feeling resentful/negative towards CH and in not being inclined to be very friendly. I mean, if your father had just married this silly airhead who is almost 10 years younger than YOU are and who tries to assert her authority over you as your “stepmother”, how are you supposed to react?! She could have been a little more diplomatic about it to be sure, but still….

I didn’t like Katherine Parr so much, I mean I found her a little bland, to be honest, though historically speaking I think she probably did an accurate enough portrayal of her. I wish they had played up her forbidden love for Thomas Seymour a little more, I mean, why not, this is just that kind of show! :p And it was nice to see Anne of Cleves a few more times (despite my expectations I think the singer/actress did a great job!), though WTF was with that sex scene with Henry, if that was what was going on?! :s If Henry suddenly found her desirable again why didn’t he marry her after CH? IRL Anne of Cleves was rather affronted/upset by the Parr marriage (spurning her for a younger and more beautiful highborn sexpot is one thing, but for an OLDER and less beautiful woman proved to be pretty much infertile, of lesser family? Insulting!), which I was disappointed not to see play out here. Oh well…

So in short, I really enjoyed this season, it may be my second favorite after season 2, and I think it was a good final season for this great little show! :) For all its flaws and inaccuracies, I will always be happy that someone actually decided to do a TV show about the Tudors, my favorite historical subject, which was able to cover so much more ground and focus on so many more figures and events than any other Tudor movie or miniseries before.

While I'll miss this show, it's also good for me that it has now ended, since that's one less show off my already too-long list of shows I watch now.  As it is, The Tudors has already been replaced in my spring lineup by Doctor Who...;)
Current Mood: satisfiedsatisfied
Current Music: "The Tudors End Credits " by Trevor Morris
Always distant. Always silent.: The Tudors - Katherine/Henry - One kissthemirrorofsin on August 26th, 2010 02:08 pm (UTC)
ahh The Tudors - best bit was the flashback lol
I wish it was more accurate and went back to the proper beginning :( want more of K/CoA cause she's my fav *nods*
I have found that normally my favourite wives I kind of dislike the most like Katherine Howard and Anne Boleyn.
I need to properly watch the last season
sherrilina: Catherine of Aragonsherrilina on August 26th, 2010 04:43 pm (UTC)
Oh yeah, I agree it's a shame that we never get to see Henry and Katherine young and in love at the beginning (they claimed season 1 focused on her, but this is such BS)...I understand their wanting to begin when they did, with the marriage already dissolving, but they could have at least had some flasbacks or something!

Catherine of Aragon is my favorite of the wives as well (I'm Team Catherine all the way! ;))--see my icon--and I actually made a tribute vid to her (see my Tudors tag) using clips from the 1970s BBC Six Wives of Henry VIII miniseries, a miniseries that you should definitely check out if you haven't see it, because they are the only one I've seen that DOES start at the beginning, and includes happy moments from the early years of C/H's marriage! :)

Did you not see the full season 4 then?
Always distant. Always silent.: The Tudors - Katherine/Henry - One kissthemirrorofsin on August 26th, 2010 05:01 pm (UTC)
I tbink they should do a prequel! and yeah utter bs! it was all about Anne for 2 seasons!
yeah or like a tad before hand so say at least 5 episodes to themselves and then go to Anne as some kind of 5 years later or whatever.

Oohh I will indeed! I think I saw that y'know on TV it rings bells (probably because I love the period)

No I came in and out tbh have to go and do some catch up.
I forgot my name, and drowned.: [tudors] bthedoingofit on August 31st, 2010 03:01 pm (UTC)
I pretty much agree with everything you've said, especially the epic finale (the wives!) and continuing with the series at least through Edward's reign! Can you imagine how interesting it would have been to see Mary's responses to everything??

I actually really liked this version of Kitty Howard, too: I think they made her very sympathetic and genuinely interesting which can be hard to do with some of the source material given, ha ha! Seymour's wife was also really interesting, and I especially enjoyed seeing her political and religious machinations collide, heh.

I have to confess that I wasn't so keen on this Elizabeth, which is sad because she's obviously totally awesome. The actress was lovely ... but a little too wooden for me. :o(

But yeah. Definitely sad that this is over now... :o(
sherrilina: Mary Tudor (The Tudors)sherrilina on August 31st, 2010 08:42 pm (UTC)
Oh yeah, I was not a big fan of the Elizabeth in this either, IDK the actress just didn't do it for me...:s