Item description for Henry VI (Arkangel Complete Shakespeare) by David Tennant William Shakespeare...
Henry V is dead, and his infant son Henry VI occupies the throne. While the French, led by Joan of Arc, threaten to win back territories lost to Henry V, a power struggle develops between the young king's guardians, leading to the Wars of the Roses.
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Reviews - What do customers think about Henry VI (Arkangel Complete Shakespeare)?
A myopic of a king done in play format. May 27, 2007
The three books that cover the life Henry VI are each masterpieces in their own right. They are each important parts of the multi-facted life of Henry VI. Wonderful history lesson.
Not A Single Complaint! Apr 26, 2000
This was one of Shakespeare's earliest plays. (possibly his third) Yet, there is nothing to indicate he was only starting out. Right away he grabs our attention with the funeral of King Henry V. Henry V's brothers Bedford and Gloucester help us to see the virtues and strengths of the deceased king. The Bishop of Winchester is well drawn as a comical villain who plots and plans, but never succeeds in doing any real damage. (Not until the next play anyway.) Talbot is memorable as the selfless hero of the play. York is memorable as the hero who defeats Joan of Arc. King Henry VI himself is interesting. First we see him as a helpless infant. By the third act, we see that he has both strengths and weaknesses. He makes the mistake of dividing the command between the rivals Somerset and York. But also, we see that he does not tolerate treason or neglect of duty. There are also many memorable scenes. The garden scene that foreshadows the War of the Roses is well drawn. The scene where York comforts his dying uncle is tragic beauty. Bedford's death in 3.2 has almost a divine tone. The death of Talbot and his son is very lamentable. York's sudden rise to power is captivating. Perhaps Shakespeare's greatest achievement in this play is that he simultaneously shows us England's war with France and the dissension with England itself.
Part 3 and still running strong! Mar 23, 2000
This is not quite as good as 1 or 2, but it is still excellent! Shakespeare grabs us with the dispute between Henry VI and York. While it seems to end peacefully it does not, and the war goes on! York's death in 1.4 is another landmark in Shakespeare's writing. The scene (2.5) where Henry finds true terror is horror, sorrow, and yet beauty and yet another moving part of the play. (The son that hath killed his father and the father that hath killed his son.) The war pauses in disaster for Henry and some comic relief is offered. But the horror starts all over again when Edward IV and Warwick have a falling out. The war starts over again, and the King of France gets involved! The scene where King Henry VI is reinstated is a scene of beauty and hope. While all of this is happening, Shakespeare carefully prepares the monstrously satanic character of Richard III. From here, the play just gets more and more bloody. A final moment of horror is offered when the eventual Richard III proudly compares himself to the one who betrayed Christ. In part 4 "Richard III," the real terror begins!