Sunday, 8 May 2016

That Talbot is but shadow of himself

The new series of The Hollow Crown has begun to be shown on BBC TV, starting with Henry VI Part 1.

That's the play that has Talbot "the terror of the French" in it, a manny so scary that when the Frenchmannys captured him:
"In iron walls they deem'd me not secure;
So great fear of my name 'mongst them was spread,
That they supposed I could rend bars of steel,
And spurn in pieces posts of adamant:
Wherefore a guard of chosen shot I had,
That walked about me every minute-while;
And if I did but stir out of my bed,
Ready they were to shoot me to the heart."

Even Scary Cat is impressed by that.

Sadly this was a very abridged* version of Henry VI Part 1, and of its 111 minute duration, less than an hour was spent on Henry VI Part 1, the rest was doing most of Henry VI Part 2 up to when York declares his intention to be king in Act 5 Scene 1.

This meant that there was very little of Talbot, even though they got in Philip Glenister to play him - not my first choice but easily in the top 3 - and so he only had a couple of scenes before going

All of the other casting was excellent as well, from Hugh Bonneville as Gloucester to Samuel West as Winchester, to Laura Frances-Morgan as Joan, to Anton Lesser as Exeter.

A lot was cut out of the plays to make this be more of a Shakespeare film, and some thing were changed around to make Somerset (Ben Miles) into more of a proper film baddy - not that he needed much help.

The next Hollow Crown is going to be even more confusing for us cats, as it will be called Henry VI Part 2 but it will really be mostly Henry VI Part 3. It may make for a better film since there are lots of battles that I expect mannys who like cinematic action will like.

* Considering the last time the BBC adapted Henry VI (in 1983), parts 1 and 2 ran to six-and-a-half hours between them. That should tell you how massively abridged this new one is, mew.

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