The Tudors Episodes

2007, TV Show

The Tudors Episode: "Checkmate"

Season 2, Episode 3
Episode Synopsis: Henry finally runs out of patience and weds a pregnant Anne in a secret ceremony; Cromwell is appointed chancellor after Thomas More steps down; the Pope condemns Henry's behavior and threatens him with excommunication; Katherine is warned not to return to court; an assassin targets Anne.
Original Air Date: Apr 13, 2008
Guest Cast Krystin Pellerin: Elizabeth Darrell David Alpay: Mark Smeaton
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Season 2, Episode 3
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Aired: 4/13/2008
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Season 2, Episode 3 Season 2, Episode 3

And they say that women are fickle! I suppose Henry has just gotta have it, so to speak. Never mind that he's wondering why the people don't love his new Queen when he so obviously doesn't any more, but he's back into blondes? The brunettes on this show don't get much luck. First, Katherine doesn't get alimony and then Anne gets a stare of such cold fury that had I been one of her Ladies, I'd have told her to start packing her bags right then and there. Of course there's also Lady Mary, who is in some respects in a worse situation than Anne. She's forbidden to communicate with her mother, her father wants nothing to do with her, and the Queen's father is making veiled threats against her. My advice to all three? Get yourselves to a salon and don't skimp on the peroxide! All joking aside, Anne is in a bad situation. She lacks the full support of the public and the clergy, and is losing favor with Henry. Yes, newly appointed Archbishop Cranmer gave his blessing to the marriage, but it was simply a good career move for him, and the rest of the clergy in England are still torn between submitting themselves whole-heartedly to the King to stay alive, or clandestinely plotting against him on behalf of Rome. I highly doubt that any of them care at this point what happens to Her Majesty. Plus, now that they're married and he was Head of the Church of England, Anne doesn't have much influence with Henry. Her family got what they wanted, and once you're at the top, there's nowhere to go but down. Baby Elizabeth doesn't portend good things for the Boleyns. Let's take a look, for a moment, at Anne's coronation. The Archbishop of Canterbury still did the ceremony in Latin, but when the time came to crown the Queen, Henry took over (and finished it all up in English, no less). Whether this all actually happened, or whether they stole the idea from Napoleon Bonaparte's coronation several hundred years down the line, it has severe and obvious symbolism. Despite the fact that Cranmer was hand-picked for the position of Archbishop due to his support of Henry and his Lutheran leanings, Henry decided to (very) publicly declare that he is above the Church by saying that only he has the power to crown royalty. If, as he believed, royalty are chosen by God and answer only to Him, and not to the Pope, he is placing himself as de facto spiritual and physical leader of the entire Kingdom, answerable to no one. The bill put forth by Cranmer (and later approved), affirms this by saying that the final appeals on all matters are to the King. We would probably consider this an act of totalitarianism, but that political concept didn't exist in the 16th century. As More points out, this act has repercussions that stretch beyond Henry's simply wanting an annulment. Katherine now has zero legal recourse, as she is basically a well-off prisoner in England whose final appeal has been denied. As Henry has unilaterally decided to break away from Rome, (which supports her),whether she leaves England or not, she has no real influence and cannot win him back by any means. While she remains in England, he has ultimate control over anything she does, which means she can do nothing. While Henry really wants nothing to do with her, he can't let her go, or he'll lose the only physical leverage he has in his cold war with Rome. All of this (not to mention William Brandon's failed assassination attempt on Anne) is spectacularly bad PR for the Pope. On the other hand, it's great for Peter O'Toole and his delightfully arch and dismissive portrayal of said Pope. Even if he were reading the menu at The Olive Garden, I'd be listening because he just has one of those amazing, trained British voices. 'Til next Sunday, and may your week be better than those of the poor Queens of England. show less
And they say that women are fickle! I suppose Henry has just gotta have it, so to speak. Never mind that he's wondering why the people don't love his new Queen when he so obviously doesn't any more, but he's back into blondes? The brunettes on this show don't get much luck. First, Katherine doesn't get alimony and then Anne gets a stare of such cold fury that had I been one of her Ladies, I'd have told her to start packing her bags right then and there. Of course there's also Lady Mary, who is in some respects in a worse situation than Anne. She's forbidden to communicate with her mother, her father wants nothing to do with her, and the Queen's father is making veiled threats against her. My advice to all three? Get yourselves to a salon and don't skimp on the peroxide!All joking aside, Anne is in a bad situation. She lacks the full support of the public and the clergy, and is losing favor with Henry. Yes, newly appointed Archbishop Cranmer gave his blessing to the marriage, but it ... read more

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Premiered: April 01, 2007, on Showtime
Rating: TV-MA
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Premise: A chronicle of the early years in the reign of England's King Henry VIII from 1520 to '30, when he divorced his first wife, Katherine of Aragon.

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