As far as series finales go, I was pretty disappointed with this one. Don't get me wrong - I loved the series - and even the majority of this episode - but talk about an anticlimactic end! That final scene made me scratch my head and think, "Surely it can't be over?" But alas, it is, Tudor Enthusiasts. "The White Queen" is no more, and now we are left waiting and anticipating a possible sequel series - yes, that's right - rumor has it that "The White Princess" might be coming to the small screen as well, picking up where this episode left off. Until then, however, let's recap how STARZ capped off this fantastic mini-series, shall we?
-As previously stated, I wasn't impressed by the final scene. It involved Princess Elizabeth murmuring about her fear for the future, while her mother simply says, "You will marry Henry Tudor and become Queen, as I was Queen." Cue credits. What?
-So the relationship between Richard and his niece, the Princess Elizabeth, is weird. I admit, it's clever - and it makes the whole York/Tudor marriage thing kind of interesting, but overall I was a little grossed out by the notion of an uncle/niece romance. Richard might be cute, and Elizabeth was certainly gorgeous, but I definitely could have done without the pre-battle love scene.
-Poor Anne. That's all I can say. Poor Anne Neville. Such a tough life, going from being the daughter of the ambitious and cruel Kingmaker, to marrying a man who didn't love her (Prince Edward), to finally marrying the love of her life, Richard, only to become embittered by royal life and consumed by the politics of the monarchy. That, plus the weight of her fearful guilt about the princes' deaths, AND the knowledge that her beloved husband is seducing his niece right before her eyes, eventually crushes the poor Queen. Oh, not to mention that her sweet son Prince Edward also dies far too young - thus crushing her hopes and dreams that she has provided Richard with everything he desired. Unfortunately, it seems she thinks her entire life has been a failure by the time she finally breathes her last.
-Princess Elizabeth made me shake my head a bit in this episode. While she seemed so wise and smart in the previous episode, she darn near ruins her chances at marrying Henry Tudor when she accuses Lady Margaret of killing her brother(s) and has an all-out cat-like altercation with her, to which Maggie B. hastily attempts to put the unruly, uncle-loving Princess back in her place. However, Elizabeth then reminds her that she will be queen, one way or another, and that "this is the last time you will ever sit in my presence." Methinks that line is from "The Red Queen" novel - yes, I picked that up. Quite proud of myself.
-That Battle of Bosworth scene. Wow. Well done. Beautifully shot and skillfully filled with emotional drama - uncertainty about the Tudor chances for success drove this battle to be a nail-biting event, even though I knew the ending. Richard's smugness also added an element of sadness to the whole thing. He thought he'd win...darn it!
-Of all the deaths in this series, Richard's got to me the most. What a horrible way to go down... first his horse falls on him, his crown/helmet pairing is knocked off of his royal head, and then he's literally taken to the ground by roughly five men, all intent on destroying him. So much for his smug "I won't lose this battle to a novice" attitude. You can thank Stanley for that, Richard. The dude waited to see who was winning, and jumped onto their side. Honestly, where is the loyalty?
-On that note, the angle with which they shot Richard's poor, dead body was rather disturbing. He had a fanatical, crazed look in his lifeless eyes, and it kind of made the whole thing even sadder in a deeply creepy way.
-Hope the crown is worth it, Henry Tudor. You spent your whole life running, hiding, and preparing for this moment - when a traitor-turned-suck-up would hand you the crown of England in a fairly anticlimactic battlefield scene, next to the previous king's freshly-killed corpse. Oh, and the way your mother comes running onto the field in her "I told you so" glory, kind of gives the impression that she loves the idea of royal life more than you, doesn't it? Her whole "I am Margaret Regina," line at the end kind of gave that away.
-As much as I love the Tudors, I'm a little put off that Margaret got exactly what she wanted. She's a bit of a whiner, and so was her son in this episode. Sorry - Richard was far more likable.
The Tudor Enthusiast I may be, but a fan of Henry VII in this series I am not. I am Team Richard all the way , and I was sad to see his death. Let's be honest, his character had WAY more development than Henry's, and out of the two of them, I think I'd rather be at his court than Henry's (along with his crazy mother). On that note, my other favorite character of the season was definitely Margaret (despite her craziness). From an acting perspective, she just blew it out of the water. Well done, Aneurin Barnard and Amanda Hale.
That was the least conclusive conclusion I've ever seen in a series finale. Not only did Princess Elizabeth NEVER MEET her future husband, Henry Tudor - but there was really no impressive Tudor foreshadowing, or introduction to the next awesome dynasty, as I had hoped for. The series just kind of fizzled out after a very lackluster battle scene finish, a whoop of victory for Margaret, and a trembling future queen and her mother - oh yeah, this series is called "The White Queen," right? I'd almost forgotten, since we haven't really seen much of Elizabeth Woodville in about three episodes. Overall, it was just a pretty unimpressive finale, but that by no means takes away from the beauty of the show in general. I think they can't possibly do the rest of the series justice - which is why we need a sequel!
Beautifully casted, scripted, and carried-out. Despite the nonsensical raunchy love scenes, I enjoyed this entire series and looked forward to watching it every week. It definitely made me look at King Richard III in a new light - and I hope it did the same for others! While I love the Tudor dynasty (of course), I have to admit the Plantagenets had just as much intrigue and drama - maybe even more, depending on which characters you're looking at. Therefore, I'm so glad that this series came to be. It opened new doors to a period in time that is not studied often enough, and it gave us a glimpse at historical figures who have been long forgotten and glossed over because of more recent and important figures (cough, Henry VIII, cough). I hope you all enjoyed "The White Queen" as much as I did! Here's to hoping we get to enjoy the beginning of the Tudor dynasty along with these characters in "The White Princess!"