I am very interested in Tudor History. So, when I saw this PBS documentary on King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, I was intrigued. This documentary is written and narrated by historian Dr. Susannah Lipscomb. Clearly, she is passionate about Tudor history. I found her narration, coupled with the reenactments, to be of some interest, as well as entertaining.
There were also two illuminated books that were intriguing. In one both Henry VIII and Anne had each inscribed something that had meaning for the other, given where in the book it had been inscribed. Another book, which had belonged to Anne, had a cryptic inscription by her, which Dr. Lipscomb discusses. Both these books were purported to be the originals, yet Dr. Lipscomb is handling them without gloves, which I found surprising.
At times during the documentary, I felt that Dr. Lipscomb acted as if she were the one being showcased, rather than her subjects. Then at other times, she seemed totally focused on and passionate about them. Her enthusiasm was definitely infectious. Still, other than those intriguing notations in the illuminated books, there was nothing really new that was offered by this documentary. It was, however, interesting to see parts of Hampton Court, one of the few Tudor palaces that have survived, as well as Hever Castle, the Boleyn family seat, where Anne had lived for a time. Overall, I enjoyed this handsome documentary.