Main content
Sorry, this episode is not currently available

Henry VI Part 1

Screen adaptations of Shakespeare plays. Seventeen years after Henry V's death, the realm is under the protection of the Duke of Gloucester and the young Henry VI.

Against the backdrop of wars in France, the English nobility quarrel. News of the English defeat at Orleans reaches the duke of Gloucester and other nobles. After the funeral of Henry V, his son, the infant Henry VI, is proclaimed king.

Seventeen years later, Henry sits on the throne whilst the rivalries at court continue - Plantagenet has learned of his own strong claim to the crown. After Rouen falls to the French, Plantagenet, Exeter and Talbot pledge to recapture the city from the Dauphin, but the French, led by Joan of Arc, defeat the English. The valiant English commander Talbot and his son John are killed.

Warwick and Somerset arrive too late for the battle but join forces with the survivors and retake Rouen. Somerset captures and woos Margaret of Anjou as a potential bride for Henry VI. Plantagenet takes Joan of Arc prisoner and orders for her to be burnt at the stake.

Despite Gloucester's protests, Margaret is introduced to the court as Henry's queen. Margaret complains that Eleanor, Gloucester's wife, behaves like an empress. Eleanor is banished and warns Gloucester that he is in great danger.

Gloucester is accused of high treason and is murdered at the Tower of London on the orders of Somerset while he and Margaret make love in the palace.

Henry banishes Somerset and Suffolk after Gloucester is found dead. Plantagenet is incensed when Margaret is able to bully Henry into reversing the sentence. Plantagenet makes his claim for the throne and sets the Houses of York and Lancaster in open opposition.

1 hour, 51 minutes

Last on

Sat 7 May 2016 21:00

More episodes

Previous

You are at the first episode

See all episodes from The Hollow Crown

Credits

Role Contributor
Producer Rupert Ryle-Hodges
Author William Shakespeare
Director Dominic Cooke
Adaptor Dominic Cooke
Adaptor Ben Power
Gloucester Hugh Bonneville
Plantagenet Adrian Dunbar
Mortimer Michael Gambon
Talbot Philip Glenister
Eleanor Sally Hawkins
Exeter Anton Lesser
Somerset Ben Miles
Margaret Sophie Okonedo
Henry VI Tom Sturridge
Warwick Stanley Townsend
Suffolk Jason Watkins
Bishop of Winchester Samuel West
Sir William Lucy Tom Beard
John Talbot Max Bennett
Dauphin Charles Tom Byam Shaw
Murderer Sean Cernow
Joan's Mother Pandora Colin
Joan of Arc Laura Frances-Morgan
Brakenbury John MacKay
Vernon Stuart McQuarrie
Basset Matthew Needham
Young Cecily Lucy Robinson
Young Cecily David Troughton
Production Company Neal Street Productions

Broadcast

Cast interviews

How did the actors tackle Shakespeare's fictional versions of real historical figures?

Shakespeare Lives 2016

Join a collaborative festival marking 400 years since the death of William Shakespeare.

Shakespeare's relevance 400 years on

The Hollow Crown's Benedict Cumberbatch and Sam Mendes discuss Shakespeare's legacy.