Everybody’s Chattin + Musings on The White Queen’s Richard III


Hello folks, happy almost Friday! I’m going to see Steven Spielberg’s BFG later this evening, though I have to admit I wasn’t really all that excited about it. I sure hope it’s entertaining and not as melodramatic as War Horse.

EU-referendum-vote-to-stay-says-Greencore-boss_medium_vgaToday marks an important day for the UK as voting is under way in a historic referendum on whether the UK should leave or remain a member of the EU. I’ve been reading a ton about it and I’m really curious to see the outcome as the result of this Brexit ballot will certainly reach beyond Europe. It’s kind of a coincidence (or not?) that I’ve been obsessed lately with a British monarch, more on that at the end of the post.

Ok, let’s get to those links!

Jay talks about child actors, which ones make it and which don’t

Make sure you make a mental note for Cindy‘s July’s Film Club on movies based on books. Glad to see Michael as the special guest next month!

Brittani reviewed Locke, that one-man-show starring the awesome Tom Hardy

One of the Flick Chicks duo Allie reviewed The Hateful Eight which she really, really liked

Father’s Day was just last Sunday, and Alex did a great Movie Fathers Quiz to commemorate it

Paul, the loyal admirer of Michelle Pfeiffer and Meg Ryan wrote a post about One Fine Day & Addicted to Love

Zöe did a fine character tribute on Walter Bishop from Fringe series

Nostra confirmed my dread about Independence Day: Resurgence. I was supposed to go to an AM screening on Friday but decided not to bother.

Last but not least, check out Mickey‘s interview with the DOP of Finding Dory, Ian Megibben

Here we go again… I have such an obsessive streak in me and I never know when something struck me. I finally finished The White Queen last Sunday, and for the past three days I’ve been consumed by much-maligned king Richard III. The last time I was obsessing over a deceased real-life character was Ian Curtis after seeing Sam Riley‘s portrayal in Control.

Like most of you, the image I have of the last Plantagenet King is that he’s an evil hunchback, thanks to the villainous Shakespeare portrayal which is more of the Tudors’ propaganda. He’s also often been portrayed as an old man when he actually died at the age of 32. Philippa Gregory‘s The White Queen paints a far more sympathetic portrayal of him, which seems to line up more with the recent discovery of the monarch’s remains back in 2012 at a parking lot of all places. Out of the three York brothers, Richard’s story certainly is the most compelling and he’s become my fave male character in the series.


It doesn’t hurt that in the series, Richard’s played by this terrific Welsh actor Aneurin Barnard with his dramatic eyes and tortured-soul temperament. For once he’s actually closer to the age of the real king when he reigned, give or take a couple of years as Aneurin was about 26 when he filmed TWQ. It’s funny but the first time he appeared on screen I gasped a little as he resembles my dahling Sam a bit with his intense, penetrating gaze. So yeah, I’m crushing a bit on him, but I’ve also become seriously obsessed with the historical character Richard III.

I think I’ve watched pretty much every video I could find on the long-dead monarch on youtube and Netflix, both the historical biographies on him and all the videos about the recent discovery in Leicester, led by another woman named Philippa. Suffice to say, like Philippa Langley, I’ve become a Ricardian now and I’m dying to see a proper Richard III film that is more historically-accurate, though I’d imagine his death scene in the Battle of Bosworth Field would likely be extremely gory to film!

In any case, here’s a preview of the brutal final episode of season 1 that ended the War of the Roses:

And here’s a clip of Richard talking to Elizabeth Woodville (the wonderful Rebecca Ferguson) about the Princes in the Tower, the ultimate cold case that remains unsolved to this day. It made me wish there’s a spin-off series of Richard III with the same cast!

I’m pretty sure Ricardians everywhere are very pleased with Aneurin’s portrayal of Richard III. He’s definitely NOT the physically and mentally crooked monster we’ve been subjected for decades. Apparently back in 2013, Langley wanted actor Richard Armitage (who’s apparently named after the king himself) to portray Richard III (per Scotland’s Herald). I’ve talked about it extensively here three years ago. Now at 44 he’s become too old (and at 6’2″ too tall as well) to play him, but I think it might still work. Heck he’d still look far younger than Lawrence Olivier or Ian McKellen who’s played the character in the past.

I for one would prefer Aneurin reprising the role in the film version. I mean if you look at the facial reconstruction created from the skull remains, he even resembles king Richard a bit.



Source: tumblr

As the series progressed, I also found myself more drawn to his relationship with the kingmaker’s daughter Anne Neville (Faye Marsay). To say it’s a complicated marriage is putting it mildly. I mean the lines between enemies and friends are often blurred during the War of the Roses, but there’s something so romantic yet tragic in how this particular union is depicted.


It’s funny how a movie/series can get you all excited about learning history, but I’ve always been a fan of the underdogs and there’s not a monarch out there more unfairly portrayed/judged like Richard III. So I’m ordering a few Richard III books and I can’t wait to devour them!

Have you seen ‘The White Queen’? I’m also curious if there’s any screen character(s) you’re currently obsessing over.

55 thoughts on “Everybody’s Chattin + Musings on The White Queen’s Richard III

  1. Excellent coverage and your enthusiasm is catching, Ruth. I’m very interested now! Yes, bring on the film adaptation and lets star Aneurin! There’s something about his eyes that has me thinking Johnny Depp. Thanks for the sound out, Ruth. You are a fine blogging friend. xxoo

    1. Ha..ha.. I can get REALLY obsessed with something instantaneously and once it hits I can’t stop!! You should check it out, it’s a very interesting tale of the War of the Roses, but I think the story of Richard III and Anne Neville towards the end is the most gripping. Aneurin certainly has the looks and temperament as Richard III, though perhaps more on the dreamy side, ahah, but hey that’s Hollywood for ya. I love a good Welshman, lots of my faves hails from there so I’m not surprised I’m slightly crushing on Aneurin 😉

  2. Thanks for the link and I’m surprised by some of the extremely positive reviews. I thought it was just ok but it’s better to watch the original again 🙂

  3. The White Queen sounds great! I’ve always been interested in Richard III, he really gets a hard time from Shakespeare and contemporary historians. They once said he was in the womb for two years and was born with hair teeth!

    And thank you for linking to my Interview😊

    1. The White Queen is good though now I wish there’s one that’s just on Richard III! Yep, the Shakespeare version is clearly a propaganda. Ahah, in the womb for two years?? That’s not even medically possible.

      You’re welcome!

  4. I havent been excited about BFG either – I didn’t know the book growing up. I hope it’s good, but I feel kind of meh about it. Also about Free State of Jones, which I’m passing up seeing tonight. Am I burned out???/

    1. Yeah I never read the books either or even heard about it. I heard Free State of Jones is awful! I also skipped the screening of the ID4 sequel because of timing, but I reckon that’ll be rubbish too.

    1. Hello there! No actually I haven’t heard of this one but I’m definitely gonna order this now. THANK YOU for recommending this to me. The books I’m ordering is the one that inspired Philippa Langley called Richard The Third by Paul Murray Kendall, as well as the one that Langley herself wrote which is about the recent discovery.

      1. It’s a bit older, but Josephine Tey was a great writer. It was the first time I ever heard the idea that Richard III might not be the villain he was painted by Shakespeare. I hope you like it!

        1. Y’know, I’ve never actually seen the screen adaptations of Richard III based on Shakespeare, somehow it never appealed to me as he’s painted as a sinister, evil hunchback monster. But I’m glad the world seems to realize it’s a propaganda ever since the discovery, and clearly Josephine Tey was ahead of her time if she wrote this in 1951!

          It’d make a great film too I think, the fact that it’s not a straight biography but more of a detective story. I’d LOVE to see Sam Riley play Alan Grant, even though he’s playing a Scotland Yard detective in an upcoming BBC miniseries. But hey, he looks good in that trench coat and hat! 🙂 What do you think?

          1. Sadly, I’m not familiar enough with Sam Riley’s work to judge! At this point, I’ve only seen him in Byzantium (and I don’t remember him at all) and Maleficent, so couldn’t really say at this point.

            We’re quite far behind the rest of the world when it comes to TV and movies, they don’t show up here for ages, if at all.

            1. Well Maleficent isn’t exactly a good one to judge his work as he played a darn bird! 😛 I think he was good in Byzantium but if you’re curious, I highly recommend Control (he played Ian Curtis from Joy Division) and On The Road (where he played Jack Kerouac’s alter ego). Most of those are older movies from the past decade.

    1. Rebecca Ferguson was the main draw for me to see The White Queen, but as the series progressed, I was more drawn to the Richard III story. She is indeed very good though, and she’s in every single episode!

  5. Hmm, not obsess with any characters lately but years ago, I’ve always try to find out everything I can about Roland The Gunslinger and of course I really wanted to see him on the big screen. But now that the film version went through several iterations and the last two novels were pretty weak, I sort of loss interest in him. I’ll keep an open mind about the film version of The Dark Tower, it could something great or just an awful adaption just like most of the films based on King’s novels.

    1. I can’t wait for The Dark Tower too since Idris was cast. That’s too bad that most of King’s screen adaptations haven’t been good. I remember how scary IT was, the one w/ Tim Curry as the clown, but then ending was rubbish!

  6. Stephanie Marshall Ward

    A movie blogger with an obsessive streak. What?? I’ve never heard of such a thing. 😀

    When I was in my teens, thanks to historical fiction, I had a burning interest in the Plantagenets and the Tudors. I’ve forgotten whatever I knew about Richard III. Was he the one who allegedly killed the little princes in the tower?

    You’ve totally piqued my interest in this series. Is it on Netflix?

    1. Mwahahaha! Well I suppose lots of bloggers have obsessive streak, but I sometimes feel mine is so out of control!

      I was never into Plantagenets nor the Tudors, but there’s something about Richard III that’s so fascinating. Yep he’s the one accused of murdering the princes in the tower, as well as being depicted as a hunchback.

      The White Queen is on Amazon, free w/ Amazon Prime and it’s quite addictive!

    1. Hey Allie, I’m just about to post about this whole Brexit thing. I’m probably rambling stuff but it’s been on my mind so I figure I should offer up my two cents.

      But yeah, my obsessive streak can be fun. I highly recommend The White Queen btw, I’m always a fan of UK programs 😀

  7. Brittani

    Thanks for the link! I haven’t seen the White Queen. Though Faye Marsay was recently in Game of Thrones, so I know her from there.

    1. I have a feeling GoT fans would enjoy The White Queen, though it certainly has less production budget. I actually wish they had as the last battle was quite underwhelming.

      1. as long as the script is good….it has that while GoT lately doesn’t :/ Though they have a new character I adore and admittedly obsess over because she is a goddess – 10 year old lady Lyanna Mormont who is so fierce and awesome she had 2 scenes so far and everyone loves her and one of those scenes was her not even saying a line and looking with fierce contempt at the show’s biggest psycho in last episode. Here is the other scene she had and her introduction https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tF5CH2SSqF8

        1. That’s too bad about GoT. I think there are moments that aren’t perfect about The White Queen as well but generally it’s pretty gripping. Wow, that’s cool a 10-year-old character makes such an impression.

  8. PrairieGirl

    Been totally fascinated with the Richard III story of finding his remains and Phillipa Gregory is one of my fav authors. The White Queen is a superb series.

    1. Glad to hear you’ve seen TWQ Becky. I don’t know why I didn’t see it sooner. Richard III is definitely a fascinating character, he deserved a great cinematic adaptation!

    1. Sorry Mark. I mean it’s hard for me who’s here across the Atlantic, can’t imagine how it must be for you guys in England. Now I heard lots of people who voted to leave are having second thoughts, oh dear.

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  10. Thanks for the link!

    You are all over this White Queen thing, and the more I read about it, the more interested I am. I will have to get my hands on it.

    Have you ever watched Vikings? This due to taking in history in the form of a series.

    A character that I am obsessed with at the moment? Elijah Mikaelson is my biggest on screen obsession – I love everything about that character!

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  14. Gabby

    Armitage will always be my Richard lll. Bernard looks nothing like the real Richard but he’s cute like him. I could care less about Armitages’ age and height. He still looks young and is a great actor.

    1. Yeah I think RA can still pull off playing a 30 year-old 😉 I’d definitely watch it if he’s cast, in fact I was hoping Philippa Langley finished her script and make that film already, I knew she wanted RA to play Richard.

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