Saturday, January 2, 2016

Versailles (Series 1)

Versailles is a 2015 Canal+ television series on the court of King Louis XIV of France during the construction of the Palace of Versailles.

George Blagden as King Louis XIV of France

I give this TV series a 1/5. I was genuinely excited for this show when I first heard about it because Louis XIV! The Sun King! Which is why I am sad to say it wasn't that good. Now don't get me wrong, the sets and the costumes were absolutely beautiful and it was a visual feast for my eyes. But it wasn't that good. You can tell they were trying to make "The Tudors" version of Versailles and it just doesn't work. This story is so bastardize by Hollywood that I could get drunk with all the tropes I find in it. Tell me if this doesn't sound ridiculous to you. Claudine is a progressive girl in 17th century France who doesn't believe in the magic mumbo jumbo of that century's medicine, instead she believes in "science". Because of her sex, she must disguise herself as a man to work as personal physician to the King who sees her inner potential. Poppycock! To say that Versailles is historically inaccurate is a bit of an understatement. The show butchers every female character it has. Normally, I would forgive changes to history for the sake of drama but when you have such a rich history as the love life of King Louis XIV of France it is downright insulting. Louise de la Valliere was just a religious nutjob and the romantic way that she and Louis fell in love is reduced to a boob grab in the back of church. Athenais, Madame de Montespan, was no maitresse en titre - boring and bland. Queen Marie Therese had a black baby?! I remember reading that this show caused controversy in France because it is in English instead of French. English is my native tongue and I would prefer it to be in English so that didn't bother me but what did bother me was that the only person on the show with a French accent was Princess Henrietta Anne of ENGLAND. Another English figure they ruined was Charles II of England. I was so excited for the Treaty of Dover but the moment Charles II of England came on screen, I recoiled in horror. The man who sired nearly twenty bastards was gayer than the Duke of Orléans. As I was watching the scene unfold, I could not help but think of a much much better show, Charles II the Power and the Passion, and how it knew its source material. This was trash. The thing I will give Versailles credit for are its two main characters. George Blagden looked the part and he acted the part but the person who really stole the show was Alexander Vhalos as Philippe, Duke of Orléans! The moment I saw him I thought he captured the character perfectly! Perfect, simply perfect. I loved seeing the relationship between the two brothers and this can be extended a little to Minette. However, this show was bland and boring for all of its sex and violence and if I didn't have to write this review I wouldn't have even finished it.