The White Queen

Sun Aug 18, 9-10pm, BBC1


Episode ten
It’s odd that, after ten hours of television, tonight’s final episode of ‘The White Queen’ feels rather rushed. Perhaps there was just too much exposition to cram in as the Wars of the Roses scream to a bloody halt. Or maybe other tellings of the story (Shakespeare springs unavoidably to mind) have been so extraordinary that it was doomed to fall short.

Still, if you’ve stuck with it this far then there’s still plenty to enjoy. Aneurin Barnard’s honourable yet creepy King Richard, deep in his winter of discontent. Rupert Graves’s magnificently bearded Lord Stanley, finally and decisively showing his hand. And Amanda Hale, whose slow-burning rise to the top as Margaret Beaumont has brought the show some much-needed emotional wallop.

Kudos, too, to the scriptwriters for making some sort of sense out of a fiendishly complex period of history. More of a romp than the landmark series it occasionally threatened to become, but there’s always room for those on a Sunday evening.

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