This is one of the finest historical miniseries that I have ever seen. From the lighting, architectural settings, fashions, social mores, and armory equipment, we are thrown back in time to the world of Central Europe in the year 1477 and beyond. Though a dramatization, the overall historical accuracy is excellent. We stand on the edge of the High Renaissance which is about to begin in Italy while northern Europe is mired in a world of barbarism, outdated attitudes towards women, rulership, methods of dining, hygiene, and the law. Young ladies are betrothed at the age of 10; a boy simply because he is of the male gender can inherit a throne at the age of 12. The average lifespan was somewhere between 25 and 28, perhaps even lower. Any illness or even the act of giving birth could prove deadly. The threat of the Black Plague hangs overhead. And overriding everything is the constant political haggling and plotting. For anyone who enjoys GAME OF THRONES, this is the REAL thing.
The amount of warfare and its cost in lives and funding that takes place for the sake of acquiring a sliver of land is enough to make one cry. Yet, beneath the surface of all this one senses a new humanism on the horizon. While there are a goodly number of key characters, this is the story of Maximilian of Austria and Marie De Bourgogne (Burgundy). The acting credits for these two may be located on IMDb. They are superb as are the rest of a flawless European cast. France wants Burgundy following the death of its king - Charles the Bold. His daughter and sole heir (MDB) bucks tradition and assumes the throne even though she is female and her legitimacy is therefore challenged by assorted members of the court and society in general. Maximilian's father, the Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, wants his son to marry MDB in order to save his crumbling domain from the onslaught of France, Hungary, and others. The two have never seen each other and are resistant. However, once an exchange of portable images is received, things begin to change. But the problem is how to get them safely together in order for the marriage to take place. How it happens is part of the fun and fascination of this miniseries (NO Spoilers here). Even when one gives birth to a male heir, the baby must be shown to the general public to prove its gender. The male and female leads are respectively quite handsome and beautiful and their love is genuine. Except for no dragons and constant references to God and the "other world", like GOT there is betrayal, lying, duplicity, plotting, murder, assassination, executions, battle scenes, and walled citadels.
Six episodes on two discs, more than an hour in length for each one, comprise this magnificent historical recreation. Production values are A+; and the dialogue is in German and French (with English sub-titles) which adds an additional note of authenticity. I suggest binge watching this miniseries over a two day period for maxim(illi)um effect.