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October 02, 2003


British TV this weekend premiered the TV film BOUDICA, starring Alex Kingston, previously best known as Moll Flanders (oh, all right, Dr Corday from ER). I think the film will be showing on American PBS later this month with the title WARRIOR QUEEN.

I wish they wouldn't keep changing the poor woman's name - I had only just got used to calling her BOUDICCA instead of BOADICEA.

The film is scripted by veteran TV writer Andrew Davies. It has been criticised as 'unhistorical', but in fact sticks pretty closely to the events desribed in Tacitus (Annals xiv). Davies has deliberately used modern slang, like 'playing ball', but why not? No doubt the Romans and Britons had their own slang. Davies also injects some echoes of modern conflicts, with references to 'client states', and 'harbouring terrorists'.

Anyway, I thought it was an enjoyable romp. Alex Kingston is splendid as the flame-haired warrior queen of the Iceni, though maybe not as athletic as Lucy Lawless. The dramatic highlight (well, the turning point) comes when Boudica is bound, gagged, and flogged, while watching her daughters being gang-raped by Roman soldiers. Not sure how this will play in Peoria.

Posted by David B at 03:20 AM

There was another WARRIOR QUEEN, produced in 1978 and starring Sian Phillips as Boadicaea and Nigel Hawtorne as Catus Decianus. I remember watching it eons ago.

Posted by: Dragan Antulov at October 3, 2003 10:53 AM