The series' four-season run comes to an end with Henry defeating one more formidable political rival and facing his mortality after dealing with the deaths of longtime friend Charles Brandon and King Francis of France. He is also haunted by the apparitions of his former royal wives, who gather for what appears to be one last confrontation.
The queen (Joely Richardson) is accused of heresy, but it is of little concern to an ailing Henry. Meanwhile, Lord Surrey faces the music for his ill-advised military action that cost the lives of 600 men and nearly thrust England back to war with France.
The war with France, which appears to be lost, takes a decisive turn when one of Henry's officers makes a bold maneuver to salvage victory. Unfortunately, the wear and tear of the campaign has weighed heavily on the King and his health deteriorates. Meanwhile, his trusted friend Charles Brandon returns from France with a mistress.
Henry revels in his new unmarried status and surprises the court and his subjects by restoring his daughters to the royal line of succession. He also forges important and unexpected political alliances and takes a romantic interest in the recently widowed Catherine Parr (Joely Richardson).
Henry is royally disturbed upon learning of his queen's inglorious and promiscuous past and her present-day dalliances, and dismisses her from the court. Meanwhile, the investigation has been rounding up and torturing some not-so-usual suspects.
Henry is heartened by his welcome in the north but disheartened to learn about some possible indiscretions in the queen's past. Things get dicier for Catherine when an ex-lover threatens blackmail, and an anonymous letter surfaces that bears witness to her infidelities.
Henry shows his benevolent side as he pardons the citizens of the North, who staged a rebellion against him. Meanwhile at home, trouble is brewing in the form of whispered accusations of an affair involving his young bride, Catherine Howard, and the ambitious Thomas Culpepper.
Henry begins to show his age during the course of Christmas celebrations and must take leave of them, but that doesn't stop the randy young merrymakers in his court. Meanwhile, power-seeking Lord Surrey targets the influential Seymour clan.
In the fourth-season premiere, Henry takes the fifth---bride, that is. This time his queen is Catherine Howard (Tamzin Merchant), a lusty young lass with a checkered past and an uncanny ability to inspire jealousy and passion among the king's court.