TV Show Review – The White Princess
Rating: 3 (out of 5). The White Princess, Starz’s follow-up to The White Queen, provides a female perspective on the War of the Roses and the period thereafter. This part of the story focuses on Elizabeth of York, (Jodie Comer) who is supposed to marry the Tudor prince who will become Henry VII (Jacob Collins-Levy) but they hate each other. The show is also about the battle between their mothers played by Essie Davis and Michelle Fairley. Most of the critics found this entertaining and intriguing enough to make it worth watching. Or, put another way, a soap opera set in the 15th century.
Variety calls this an “enjoyable, ridiculous romp through the early days of the first Tudor king, Henry VII, and his marriage to Elizabeth of York.” They say it is “not as clear or polished as say, “The Crown,” when it comes to creating a portrait of the monarchy. But it is at its best when it portrays the complex negotiation and manipulation between Henry and Lizzie.”
USA Today thinks “There’s a frantic effort here to create drama where very little exists, which includes using rapes and throat cuttings to distract us from the emptiness of the storytelling. Nor does it help that the dialogue ranges from pseudo-Shakespearean to flat-out Real Housewife-ian.” They warn viewers “Come for the fancy costumes, drafty castles, barbed glances and backstabbing power grabs. Just don’t come for the story, because Princess doesn’t have much of one to tell.”
The Tampa Bay Times thinks this is “deliciously intriguing with all the trappings of a successful period drama: love, scandal and political strife.”
Entertainment Weekly feels “The White Princess manages to make even 15th-century politics feel contemporary.” They note “the series grounds itself in the journey of its titular heroine with a sharp understanding of a new queen’s difficult, often precarious position.”
The Wall Street Journal states “In addition to taking the chattel’s point of view in a world lopsidedly male, The White Princess is a tapestry of soap and backstage politics, with some really marvelous performances.”
The San Francisco Chronicle thinks “The show really should have been called “The Mothers-in-Law,” except that very little “law” is observed as Woodville and Margaret connive and conspire to at least hobble each other, if not do each other in altogether.” They say “ if you want historical accuracy, go watch PBS. “The White Princess” is about sex, murder, death, jealousy and intrigue, and it covers all of those topics with enough flair to make the series entertaining.”