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THE LAST KINGDOM


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Post #1 Guest_Harrytheheid_*

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 09:17 PM

Anyone else watched this?

 

TLK.jpg

 

I'm up to episode 5 and enjoying it immensely, especially when Uhtred reveals himself to be a proto-SAS-man and goes on a lone commando raid.

Highlights for me are:-

 

Alexander Dreymon in the title role as Uhtred, son of Uhtred.

David Dawson, who nails Alfred the Great as presented in the books, although I've never bought Cornwell's portrayal of him.

Adrian Bower does a splendid job as Leofric.

As does Emily Cox as Uhtred's first love interest, Brida.

 

But the real standout character for me so far has been Ian Hart as the priest Beocca. Somehow or other, he actually reminds me on the sadly missed Donald Pleasence.

 

It's a highly recommended yarn and difficult to beat for some pretty good escapism.

 



Post #2 Andy c. Neilson

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 10:42 PM

My brother Gordon has seen it ...and thoroughly enjoyed it...It's on my 'Viewing List'.
Andy.

Post #3 Guest_Harrytheheid_*

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 11:35 PM

It's set around 300 to 400 years after my own favorite era of Britain's Dark Ages -- but that's going to be covered by a new series primarily based on Thomas Mallory’s “Le Morte d’Arthur”, which is scheduled for February 2017.

B)

Meanwhile, Season 2 of The Further Adventures of Uhtred is due this Autumn.



Post #4 Guest_Gazza_*

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Posted 20 May 2016 - 06:47 AM

I have been catching up on this - recorded it - but only just got round to watching this. Watched episode 5 last night !!!

 

Gazza



Post #5 Guest_Harrytheheid_*

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Posted 20 May 2016 - 08:14 AM

I have been catching up on this - recorded it - but only just got round to watching this. Watched episode 5 last night !!!

 

Gazza

 

I finished it today. Onto Vikings S4E5 now.



Post #6 Larry_B

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Posted 20 May 2016 - 08:54 AM

I will have to give it a try. It has a fantasy feel to some of the weapons and armor which has really got my inner-curmudgeon activated. Of course, I had a similar reaction to Vikings' first episode and now love it (even if the history and tactics are often deeply flawed, not always, but often.)

 

Just have to stop taking my "knowledge" so damn seriously and enjoy it.


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Post #7 Guest_Harrytheheid_*

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Posted 20 May 2016 - 08:57 AM

I will have to give it a try. It has a fantasy feel to some of the weapons and armor which has really got my inner-curmudgeon activated. Of course, I had a similar reaction to Vikings' first episode and now love it (even if the history and tactics are often deeply flawed, not always, but often.)

 

Just have to stop taking my "knowledge" so damn seriously and enjoy it.

 

It's entertainment Larry. So be entertained.

I've got Beowulf: Return to the Shieldlands waiting in the wings once I get through the latest season of Vikings.



Post #8 Larry_B

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Posted 20 May 2016 - 09:02 AM

 

It's entertainment Larry. So be entertained.

I've got Beowulf: Return to the Shieldlands waiting in the wings once I get through the latest season of Vikings.

Sometimes I am good at suspension of disbelief, but sometimes it really irks me. I think I wanted this to be accurate and I am pouting that it isn't. Of course, the really accurate films like the German "Stalingrad", "Downfall" and "Generation War*" usually end up really depressing. Just struck me, the Germans can't afford a fantasy with their legacy. Probably why Das Boot (which should be in the list above) and the others are so gritty and realistic all the way to the end. 

 

* I know there are some far out aspects of the four main characters interacting so much across the huge Eastern Front


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 to live in truth to have faith to choose service to others to give proof of humility 
 - to love justice to be merciful to be sincere and wholehearted to stand for principles of love and service
 
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Post #9 Guest_Spitfrnd_*

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Posted 20 May 2016 - 11:38 AM

As I have said several times before, Bernard Cornwell is one of my very favorite authors and the Saxon Stories (recently renamed the Last Kingdom Stories), which is the nine (so far) book series on which this first production is based, is one of my favorite Cornwell efforts.  I have read each of these at least twice.  I started taping the BBC version but missed the first installment and have been waiting to see the full set released, which I take it has occurred in the UK.  I very much look forward to seeing the cinema versions of these books, which I have little doubt, will, as for the Sharpe series, be different pleasures but pleasures none the less.  I would also say again, if you like Uhtred (and his sword, Serpent Breath), I very much recommend Cornwell's three volume Warlord Chronicles.  In this excellent variation on the Arthur legend, Derfel (with his sword,Hywelbane) is equally compelling.

 

Personally, I enjoy Cornwell's stories much more than any history I have every read, a point I enjoy irritating Matt (FL) with from time to time. :P   They may not be completely real, but they certainly feel real and are well researched and artfully and entertainingly told.  FWIW, I rather like the characterization of Alfred in the Saxon Stories.  He is not a king you would like but he is a king you would fight far, which may not be so far from the truth.



Post #10 Guest_Harrytheheid_*

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Posted 20 May 2016 - 07:51 PM

FWIW, I rather like the characterization of Alfred in the Saxon Stories.  He is not a king you would like but he is a king you would fight far, which may not be so far from the truth.

 

Cornwell takes Alfred and makes him fit into the yarns he writes. Nothing wrong with that and it's rather entertaining. I don't personally believe the characterization fits the historical Alfred, but that was never the intention of the books or the series anyway.

I do think Dawson does a marvelous job of transferring Cornwell's Alfred to the screen though.

Just like all these other programs, such as Vikings, Marco Polo, GoT, Beowulf and so on, it's essentially soap opera for big boys.

And fairly good soap opera at that.

:D



Post #11 Guest_Harrytheheid_*

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Posted 20 May 2016 - 07:55 PM

Sometimes I am good at suspension of disbelief, but sometimes it really irks me. I think I wanted this to be accurate and I am pouting that it isn't. Of course, the really accurate films like the German "Stalingrad", "Downfall" and "Generation War*" usually end up really depressing. Just struck me, the Germans can't afford a fantasy with their legacy. Probably why Das Boot (which should be in the list above) and the others are so gritty and realistic all the way to the end. 

 

* I know there are some far out aspects of the four main characters interacting so much across the huge Eastern Front

 

Yeah, the world's still waiting for the first German sit-com.... :lol:

That's rather savage, most Germans I've met in person are "just like us".... :ph34r:



Post #12 Guest_Harrytheheid_*

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Posted 20 May 2016 - 11:46 PM

I really enjoyed it, but like the books much better. Certainly worth a watch though. If you're a reader, read first

 

The books are generally better than any screen adaptation Zach. I tend not to get too wrapped up in the "Hey, that didn't happen in the book..!!" issues.

Like I mentioned on some other thread, they're different mediums, and I enjoy each for what they are.

 

Tell you what though, Lagertha isn't half making her point to all and sundry in the latest season of Vikings....ulp.... :blink:

And I'm really looking forward to seeing how First Legion are going to portray such an iconic screen character.

 

LONG LIVE LAGERTHA, LONG LIVE LAGERTHA

LONG LIVE LAGERTHA, LONG LIVE LAGERTHA

LONG LIVE LAGERTHA, LONG LIVE LAGERTHA

:D



Post #13 brian

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Posted 29 May 2016 - 02:04 AM

 

Yeah, the world's still waiting for the first German sit-com.... :lol:

That's rather savage, most Germans I've met in person are "just like us".... :ph34r:

Ever seen a certain "Fawlty Towers" episode?



Post #14 Guest_Gazza_*

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Posted 29 May 2016 - 04:14 AM

Finished last kingdom, pretty good.

Have really enjoyed Vikings series but...

I think this series of Vikings has been quite slow and It feels like the writers lost the plot a bit

The Ragner story line has been v boring

Gazza

Post #15 Hunter Rose

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Posted 02 August 2016 - 07:40 PM

I just started this series and am enjoying it immensely.  This is not my era of expertise, but it definitely feels more realistic to me (than say Vikings).

 

For you experts on Vikings, what are some good reference books or websites to start increasing the knowledge?  I'm interested in Viking history but also the more technical aspects such as weaponry and tactics.



Post #16 Larry_B

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Posted 02 August 2016 - 09:50 PM

This was surprisingly good:

 

https://smile.amazon...=I2HZIITDAN4392

 

Written like a manual or a recruitment handbook. Has some humor, but also packed full info that reads very easy. Good "beach" history book.

 

There is a similar one on knights that is also good.


Larry
 
 to live in truth to have faith to choose service to others to give proof of humility 
 - to love justice to be merciful to be sincere and wholehearted to stand for principles of love and service
 
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Post #17 Guest_Spitfrnd_*

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Posted 29 November 2016 - 06:34 PM

I finally got around to seeing the video version of the Last Kingdom and truly loved it.  As expected, it is different from the books but no less enjoyable.  Yes it has some historical mistakes here and there, more so than the books, but that does not detract from its enjoyment in the least.  I can say that, UNLIKE VIKINGs, they actually did a decent job of depicting shield wall combat, albeit for too short a time.  The books tell great stories and the series captures enough of the essence of the books to retain that pleasure.  Like Sharpe, what really makes that work is the casting and performances.  To me, all of the main characters look and act like I imagined them.  Overall, if you like dramas about this period, you cannot go wrong with this series.  I can now hardly wait for Season 2.

 

Ironically, I also watched the latest Star Trek screen effort this weekend.  I won't say it was a waste of time but it was a huge disappointment.  The cast remains strong but they are totally undermined by the writing direction and editing.  The all too brief moments of sustained dialogue are good but the action expands upon the inflated, preposterous, micro-cut mishmash from the last installment to produce an end effect that is simply a vapid CGI hemorrhage that ends up boring.  I would rather watch nearly any two episodes of ANY of the Trek TV series than see this nonsense again.  It is said to waste such a good cast.



Post #18 Spitfrnd

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 01:47 PM

Nearing the end of Season 2 of the Last Kingdom and I can say it is overall even better than the first season.  The original core characters remain splendidly done, particularly Uhtred and Alfred.  The new characters, notably Gisela, Finnan, Aethelflaed, Shitric and Eric are all perfectly cast and excel and bring the characters to life.  I am not as happy with the choice of Steapa but it works well enough here.  My one casting disappointment is with the character Haesten.  He is totally the wrong type and he is much less interesting in the screen version than in the books.  His role in the books as a handsome and cunning oath breaker who is adept at playing the various Saxon and Viking leaders he meets for his own ends is missed.  Of course as Harry said before in this thread, films and books are very different mediums and one shouldn't get hung up on the differences.  Cornwell himself has said the same.  Still, as my wife noted, when you have a brilliant story, why muck it up with the screen play?  Fortunately, that doesn't happen here much and the only real regret I am left with is that there are not more episodes.  Ideally, I would have liked to see each Season expanded to more completely tell the story but what is here is indeed very well done.  Of course what this will do is make me go back and read the series again (for the third time) but that is hardly a bad outcome.  After this Season, I suggest that if you have any interest at all in the period or in historical novels in general, you really should see this series.  It is far superior to Vikings if just about every way (except perhaps the absence of Legathea). 


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Post #19 harrytheheid

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 11:41 PM

Yes, the second season is certainly more immersive, probably because the first season had a bit of a slow start, much like the books actually.

I'd have to agree that it's probably better than Vikings -- it went off on all kinds of weird tangents; still good TV of course, but not as great as it could have been.

Apparently the BBC and Netflix are still negotiating Season 3, although there's word that the BBC might drop out.

Whatever way it pans out, I'll be amazed if Season 3 doesn't go ahead. Certainly the Dark Ages would seem to be rich pickings for the TV and Movie moguls.

Rather disappointing that my other favorite historical drama series, Marco Polo, appears to have been cancelled though.





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