He waited a lifetime to be king, ruled England for just nine years, and changed the monarchy forever. Winner of an Emmy® and multiple BAFTA awards, this deluxe British miniseries traces the life of Edward VII, son...more.
He waited a lifetime to be king, ruled England for just nine years, and changed the monarchy forever. Winner of an Emmy® and multiple BAFTA awards, this deluxe British miniseries traces the life of Edward VII, son of Queen Victoria, from frustrated prince to respected statesman, philanderer to loving father. The star-studded cast includes Timothy West, Annette Crosbie, John Gielgud, Charles Dance, and Francesca Annis. 13 episodes; approx. 11 hours 18 min. On 4 DVDs.
Disc 1 Episode 1: The Boy A young Queen Victoria and her husband Prince Albert juggle marriage and the demands of government. Since Albert desires more involvement in political affairs, Victoria relinquishes trusted advisers in favor of her husband and Robert Peel's new government. It is into this serious and striving environment that Albert Edward is born.
Episode 2: An Experiment in Education Suffering under a tyrannical educational system designed by his father and Baron von Stockmar, Bertie grows up perpetually disappointing his parents. Isolated from other children, his beloved siblings are his only companions, and he is distressed to learn he will ascend the throne instead of his elder sister, Vicky.
Episode 3: The New World Introduction by Robert McNeal After charming America, Bertie returns home to attend Oxford University. Entrusted to the watchful eye of his guardian, Bertie cannot socialize as a normal student but manages to make some friends. Hoping to quell his rebelliousness, his father finally consents to army training for Bertie.
Episode 4: Alix Commentary by Timothy West, Annette Crosbie, and John Gorrie Although Victoria searches for a suitable wife for Bertie, he remains reluctant to marry, despite the manifest appeal of Princess Alexandra of Denmark. While Victoria remains preoccupied with Bertie, Prince Albert overworks himself preserving peace with America during its Civil War and falls gravely ill.
Disc 2 Episode 5: A Hundred Thousand Welcomes Distraught with grief, Victoria secludes herself from the public and insists Bertie marry Alix. The couple finds happiness together, but Victoria still denies Bertie a role in the government. Meanwhile, the political situation in Europe and in the royal family grows tense as Prussia's military ambitions threaten Alix's native Denmark.
Episode 6: The Invisible Queen Victoria's self-imposed isolation stirs republican sentiment in Britain, which Bertie's social scandals further enflame. Prussia's growing power causes rifts within the extended royal family, who find themselves on opposing sides. And on the tenth anniversary of Prince Albert's death, Bertie battles with the same disease that killed his father.
Episode 7: Dearest Prince Restless and frustrated with Victoria's constant refusals to assign him work, Bertie finally wins her consent to take an official tour of India. Although his visit proves an overwhelming success, a private romantic affair that becomes a public scandal mars his accomplishment and draws both Alix and Bertie into the mess.
Episode 8: The Royal Quadrille Bertie finally gains employment as head of a working-class housing commission but still has time for an affair with the beautiful actress Lillie Langtry. His happiness contrasts with his sister Vicky's ever-more-precarious position in Germany, as Bismarck consolidates his power and becomes an influential advisor to Vicky's son Wilhelm.
Disc 3 Episode 9: Scandal Commentary by Timothy West, Annette Crosbie, and John Gorrie Bertie's scandals rock the royal family once again. Trying to protect his current dalliance from public exposure, he exacerbates the situation by participating in an illegal card game that goes disastrously awry. But the sudden illness of his eldest son overshadows these concerns.
Episode 10: The Years of Waiting Queen Victoria celebrates her Diamond Jubilee, but the festive spirit is short-lived when conflicts erupt in other parts of the world. Alix fears for her brother, the Greek king, in his troubles with the Turks, and the Boer War breaks out in Africa. As Victoria's health weakens, so does Bertie's desire to be king.
Episode 11: King at Last Introduction by Robert McNeal Commentary by Timothy West, Annette Crosbie, and John Gorrie Taking Edward as his royal name, Bertie and the government wonder what kind of king he will be. His anxieties mount as his dying sister Vicky warns him against Kaiser Wilhelm's intentions and his coronation is repeatedly delayed, first by the Boer War and later by life-threatening surgery.
Disc 4 Episode 12: The Peacemaker Introduction by Robert McNeal With Britain's popularity at a low point across Europe, Bertie courts friendly relations with other nations in defiance of the government ministers. His successful efforts earn him the sobriquet "The Peacemaker," but the megalomaniacal kaiser plots with the Russian czar against their Uncle Bertie.
Episode 13: Good Old Teddy! Introduction by Robert McNeal Bertie helps Britain forge a treaty of alliance with Russia, despite Wilhelm's continued attempts to interfere. Meanwhile, a constitutional crisis looms in Britain, as the House of Lords resists the rise of the House of Commons and its social reforms. Worn down from work, Bertie falls gravely ill and dies, beloved by his family, friends, and country.