The Tudors

Season 1 Episode 4

His Majesty, The King

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Apr 22, 2007 on Showtime
out of 10
User Rating
194 votes

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Episode Summary

As a reward for his denunciation of Martin Luther, the Pope christens Henry “Defender of the Faith,” but a brush with death causes the king to seek a solution to his lack of an heir. Princess Margaret marries the decrepit King of Portugal reluctantly, but the union is short-lived; Henry's desire for Anne Boleyn intensifies when Anne goes home to her family estate.moreless

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  • History Lesson!

    Actually King Henry Had Two Sisters Mary & Margaret But For This Show They Just Blended The Two But Neither Married A Portugese King. His Youngest Sister Mary Married The King Of Francis Who Was Super Old and Died Shortly After & She Married Charles Brandon Afterwards, So iThink Thats Where They Got The Idea From. Margaret Married Scottish Royalty and Was The Mother of The Future King James, Who Ruled In England After Elizabeth. However. Queen Katherine of Aargon's Sister Maria Did Marry Manuel 1moreless
  • His Majesty, The King

    His Majesty, The King was a superb episode of The Tudors. I really enjoyed watching this episode as the plot lines grew more complex and the characters really moved the scenes. I enjoy all the complexities of the stories and characters. This episode was very entertaining and gives viewers a look into what life may have been like at times for these people. It was interesting to see the Royal Court in Lisbon, Portugal. I thought Princess Margaret was excellent and did the only thing she could. Henry had a couple near death experiences making him think of the future. This episode is the begining of the major changes he goes through. I look forward to watching the next episode of The Tudors!!!!!moreless
  • Facts for sex.

    "The Tudors" isn't known for its History accuracy, but this particular episode is revolting. The way they played with reality just so Princess Margaret could make her contribution to the long list of sex scenes on this show is a very poor notion.

    According to the story line time, the King of Portugal was Manuel I, who died at the age of 52, so he wasn't nearly as old as he was portrayed in this episode. Plus, he was the King that started the Portuguese Discoveries, so it was kind of offensive to watch him as an old man who just wants to have sex with a younger woman. The way they portrayed Portuguese people was also particularly offensive. The murder scene was another inaccuracy: Manuel I died of natural causes.

    It's really a shame that this series has to invert History in this way. This episode had everything to be great, from acting to the sets. I didn't hate it, I just don't think there was any need of diminishing the image of Portugal to get a "better" story line.moreless
  • The plot thickens...

    Conspiracies and conspiracy theories are all over the place... What irks me a bit is that I'm not sure whether Wolsey is a bad guy or a good guy. I don't really care either way, but it feels like the show hasn't decided yet and that makes the whole thing a bit confusing. They should also explain further how Henry could break his treaty with the French with apparently no reprocussions (sp?). What exactly was the point of the storyline with the French treaty if it's just tossed aside in the next couple of episodes? Though maybe this will be dealt with more in later episodes.

    I don't know how much accuracy there is to Henry's "near death" experience, but it worked quite good as a tool to move the story forward and to get him to finally decide to divorce Catherine. I have to voice a complaint about the show here though, and that is that Jonathan Rhys Meyers is far too young to plan Henry VIII at this stage of his life. Henry looks like he's in his early 20ies while Catherine looks like she's in her mid 40ies. They do not look like they could have been married for 15-or-so years. I have no problems with Rhys Meyers' acting per se, but they should have cast someone who at least looked like he was in his mid 30ies.

    Anyway, they are handling the storyline with Anne Boleyn rather well. The poor actress doesn't get to do much other than to walk around and look at things (mostly the king) but they are doing a nice job of portraying one of the perhaps largest reasons why she managed to become more than just another mistress to him.

    As a fan of "24" I was happy to see an actor from that show appear. James Frain was really good as Paul Raines and I'm looking forward to seeing more of him on "The Tudors".

    I have to say though that my favorite part of the show at this point is the subplot with Princess Margaret and Charles Brandon. I know nothing of the actual life of Princess Margaret (only that since Princess Mary isn't on the show the character appears to be a combination of the two actual women) but it's not too hard to see where this is going. The actors have chemistry and did a good job in their scenes together. I'm looking forward to how this plot evolves. While it's interesting to follow the famous stories of Henry and his many wives, the character of Henry is so high on himself that the love stories are less interesting. There seems to be a lot more potential in the storyline with Margaret and Charles.

    However I didn't like how they handled the parts with the Portugese king. The wedding night scene cracked me up, but other than that it wasn't that well handled. Regardless of how terrifying it must have been to be married off to an old man in a foreign country, that was always a risk if you were a princess, and Margaret must have been aware of that. Her behaviour when she arrived and when she got married was... "unprofessional". And I didn't like that she became a murderer towards the end of the episode.moreless
  • The story of Henry VIII.

    As a reward for his denunciation of Martin Luther in his book, the Defence of the Seven Sacraments, the Pope christens Henry "Fidei Defensor" - "Defender of the Faith", but a brush with death, while playing sport, causes the King to seek a solution to his lack of an heir. Henry seeks Cardinal Wosley to get him a divorce from Queen Katherine. Henry's desire for Anne Boleyn intensifies. Charles Brandon falls in love with Princess Margaret when he escorts her to the Portuguese Court, in order for her to marry the decrepit King of Portugal. However, the union does not last long.moreless
Joseph Kelly

Joseph Kelly

King of Portugal

Guest Star

Jamie Thomas King

Jamie Thomas King

Thomas Wyatt

Recurring Role

Matt Ryan

Matt Ryan


Recurring Role

Joe van Moyland

Joe van Moyland

Thomas Tallis

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

    • Goof: The landscape scene depicting Lisbon actually depicts the University of Coimbra, with is some 15k km to the north.

    • The King of Portugal in power at the time of this episode was Manuel I. Like most Portuguese kings, he died of natural causes at the age of 52.

    • In fact Princess Margaret married James IV, King of Scots, not the king of Portugal. Her sister, Mary, married a much older man, 52 year old King Louis XII of France, when she was just 18 years old.

  • QUOTES (9)

    • King Henry: You almost lost an eye.
      Anthony Knivert: Never use that one much anyway.

    • Charles Brandon: Your highness must be looking forward with great anticipation to your wedding? I hear the king was a great horseman... in his time. And famous for his beautiful mistresses.
      Princess Margaret: Don't tease me. I don't like it.
      Charles Brandon: Will you like it when an old man tries to make love to you?
      Princess Margaret: Your grace goes too far. Already.
      Charles Brandon: Gospel says the truth will make you free.
      Princess Margaret: Now you are blasphemous!

    • Thomas Boleyn (to Norfolk): There will come a point when the King's belief in his minister will hang in the balance and then, Your Grace, we shall drop our truth into the scales... and the scales will fall.

    • King Henry (to Cardinal Wolsey): I want a divorce, and you will get one for me.

    • Princess Margaret: Do you play cards, Your Grace?
      Charles Brandon: Sometimes, Your Highness.
      Princess Margaret: What game shall we play?
      Charles Brandon: You choose.

    • King Henry: Mister Wyatt.
      Thomas Wyatt: Your Majesty.
      King Henry: I hear you're a poet.
      Thomas Wyatt: I write poems, I don't know how to be "a poet".
      King Henry: I've read some, I like them.
      Thomas Wyatt: My Lord, I don't know what to say.
      King Henry (whispers in Wyatt's ear): Were you in love with Anne Boleyn?
      Thomas Wyatt: I...
      King Henry: Cardinal Wolsey tells me you were once engaged.
      Thomas Wyatt: No, that's not true.
      King Henry: Did you love her?
      Thomas Wyatt: Lady Anne is so beautiful, it is the duty of every man to love her. Of course I loved her, but from a distance. Personally, I have a wife.

    • Cardinal Wolsey: We have a new visitor at court, Princess Marguerite of Nevarre. I was saying to myself yesterday, I found her a very beautiful young woman with a very sweet and yielding disposition, She confessed to great admiration for Your Majesty. Should I, arrange ...?
      King Henry: Yes! Yes, do it.

    • Cardinal Wolsey: Well, at least our alliance with the emperor is popular, although sometimes I ask myself why that should be so.
      King Henry: Because he's not French!
      Cardinal Wolsey: Quite.

    • King Henry: Charles, as you love me, take care of her.
      Charles Brandon: I will. Have no doubts, I shall treat her as if she were my own sister.

  • NOTES (2)