BY TAMARAH WALLACE
History geeks rejoice. The television adaptation of Philippa Gregory’s bestselling novel of the same name, “The White Princess,” is a historically accurate, thought-provoking masterpiece.
“The White Princess” continues the story of its predecessor and fellow Philippa Gregory creation, “The White Queen,” which chronicles the plight of King Edward IV and his legendarily beautiful, cunning wife, Elizabeth Woodville, and their intriguing path to victory.
“The White Princess” follows the extraordinary life of the eldest daughter of the aforementioned pair, Princess Elizabeth of York, and her part in mending “The Wars of the Roses,” or “The Cousins’ Wars,” a long-standing feud between two rival branches of the royal House of Plantagenet and fuel for many other popular book and television series such as “Game of Thrones.”
The two familial factions, the House of Lancaster (associated with a red rose) and the House of York (whose symbol was a white rose), both have claims to the throne of England and have been battling for their claims for centuries.
After the death of Princess Elizabeth’s Father, King Edward IV, the country plunged into another cousin’s war as Elizabeth’s brothers and heirs to the throne were hidden for the safety and Lancastrians moved to take England. Elizabeth’s Uncle, King Richard III, was the last Yorkist King and he was defeated at the Battle of Bosworth by Henry Tudor, a somewhat distant Lancastrian descendent.
Now Henry Tudor had taken the throne against the will of many in the country as Elizabeth’s father had been a beloved, righteous King. Therefore, in order to keep his newly acquired position, he vowed to marry Princess Elizabeth to unite the two houses and exhibit his want for peace in England.
The show goes on to expertly recount the difficulty of the situation- two parties that utterly hate each other but are bound to cooperate. And since tensions are still running high, cooperation is more of a ruse to assure the English people than a concept to practice and at the beginning of the series, Princess Elizabeth’s proclaims it her duty to fight her husband and his family from the inside and put her brother on the throne.
Over the course of the show, however, devastating circumstances agitate the ideals of many of the characters and while some have a miraculous change of heart, others progress further into corruption and unknowingly perpetuate their demise.
In order to flawlessly reiterate history, “The White Princess” utilizes outstanding actors and actresses as well as convincing settings, props and costumes. Each aspect of the show, from the exquisite destinations to the superb performances, exude consideration for the time period as well as the mindset of the characters. Its attention to detail and captivating storyline make “The White Princess” the television watching experience of a lifetime.
Photo courtesy of White Princess
- Fascinating storyline
- Historically accurate
- Great acting
- Convincing destinations and attire
- Very long episodes
- Doesn’t use the same actors as predecessor show