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The White Queen

Sun Jul 14, 9-10pm, BBC1


Series one, episode five
Just like ‘Game of Thrones’, ‘The White Queen’ has made us wait for serious bloodshed. Unlike ‘Game of Thrones’, however, budgets were clearly an issue, so tonight’s set-to between Edward and Warwick’s forces resembles a minor skirmish rather than the kingdom-defining clash it was. Great fun even so, with badass Warwick headbutting his foes and one key character being afforded a melodramatic death scene worthy of ‘Platoon’. And, for all the bloopers – zips, hoodies, anachronistic phrasing – ‘The White Queen’ keeps telling a rattling good story.

The betrayals and feints are becoming dizzying as Edward gains unlikely allies, Anne gets a crash course in grown-up politics from Margaret of Anjou and Margaret Beaufort receives yet another blow to her impressive resolve. All this and bit-part players are moving centre stage – not least Richard of York. Daft it may be, but ‘The White Queen’ is one of the most purely entertaining dramas of the year.

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