1066 and Middle Earth on C4

Discussion in 'Films, Music and All Things Artsy' started by TheIronDuke, May 18, 2009.

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  1. TheIronDuke

    TheIronDuke LE Book Reviewer


    Early days, but I've seen worse.

    I like the idea that they are not all fearless Hollywood heroes.

    Some of them are wetting themselves. The next one is tomorrow night and its at Hastings.

    We lose on penalty's, according to the Radio Times.

    The Ref was Swiss. According to the Radio Times.

  2. Not sure where they got the Yokel accents from, they came a lot later. Could have been worse, if it had been the BBC, Nelson Mandella would have played King Harold with Samuel L Jackson as William The B*stard!.

    Mind you, that would maybe make for decent drama!
  3. Brythnoth must have been resurrected when he gave his Maldon speech at Fulford!
  4. I learnt- if you ever meet a viking berserker, distract him by pretending to make peace whilst getting a mate to shove a spear up his ringer. FACT.

    A little bit low budget, I expect we'll be surprised to find the battle of Hastings was fought in the middle of a big forest to conceal lack of extras...but at least they didn't muck about with revisionism or anything...
  5. Why didn't they just bring up an archer and shoot that berzerker on the bridge? I can't believe that part of the story about a lone berzerker holding up an army like that. Viking propaganda after the fact I suspect with the bit about him getting a spear up the ring piece being Saxon counter propaganda.
  6. A good fictionalisation (is that a word?) of the subject is The Last English King by Julian Rathbone. Can't say I like all his stuff, but this one was good!
  7. The Saxons didn't use archers! Was seen as a bit poofy, real men fought hand to hand (cultural values usually trumping effectiveness in non-professional armies)! No wonder they took a pasting from the normans, bunch of part time farmers & a few Huscarls vs semi-professional knights, archers & men-at-arms...

    Apparently the bridge thing did happen, read Tom Holland's 'Millenium' for a good readable account of the era...
  8. They didn't dwell too much on the effectiveness of the Anglo Saxon shield wall. Maybe in the next episone!
  9. I think they sort of conveyed the idea of the shield wall from the Battle of Fulford, how the Saxons broke into the Viking's center in formation, but were at a disadvantage in individual combat...
  10. But wasn't Hardrada shot by an archer - according to contemporary accounts?

    Also I'm fairly sure both sides used archers at Hastings a few days later.
  11. I've never seen any reference to Saxon archers at Hastings, perhaps there were some individuals with hunting bows, but not the massed formations used by the Normans. Of course, I'm hardly an authoritative source, I just like the era...
  12. seaweed

    seaweed LE Book Reviewer

    My understanding is that the word Saxon comes from Seax, a battleaxe. Anyway sit back and enjoy not being part of the fyrd, Harold's pretty-much-untrained TA. they must have been pretty tough chaps, our ancestors, fighting to the death at Stamford, forced march to Hastings and then another battle. In the end there's just Harold's brothers, standing over his body, still swinging their axes in the fading light .. the first army in Europe to stand and fight against a Norman cavalry charge, and that day, several such charges albeit arranged craftily by Harold to be uphill. Harold, from his mystery time in Normandy, knew exactly what he was up against. William, with his ability to RECALL a cavalry charge, and his organic engineer support in the form of dissassembled prefab forts, and having three horses knocked out under him, and nearly losing the battle when his people thought he was dead and he had to take his helmet off to show he wasn't .. deserves a tick too.
  13. Bradstyley - "The Saxons didn't use archers! Was seen as a bit poofy, real men fought hand to hand.."

    Ah, so over the next couple of hundred years, perhaps under Froggie Norman influence, we opted for legions of bow wielding nancy boys - men in tights? 8O Bet Longshanks never stepped out without a brick in his purse? :wink:

    Anyway, as a bunch of spear-chuckers why didn't they porcupine him? Probably saw too many Martial Arts plays - 20 adversaries but they only attack one at a time :roll:

    Perfectly understandable, several hundred years passed etc, but somehow a pity they didn't retain the military lessons learnt from the Romans. :(

  14. Hey, the Yeomen of the Hundred years war were nothing to do with the Saxons, they're about 300 years apart! I personally don't consider the Saxons to be English proper until about a century after the Norman conquest, when the Normans began to integrate more with the Saxon populace...I mean culturally I'm English, but ethnically I'm only 1/8 Anglo-Saxon at best, I'd imagine anyone on here has an admixture of Norman, Norse & Celtic (and plenty of Jewish in my personal case) blood, let alone whichever wenches great-great-great-great grandad may have slipped one in the days of empire...
  15. seaweed

    seaweed LE Book Reviewer

    The longbow came from the Welsh, the clothyard shaft with the grey goose feather could pierce plate armour. However archery needed a lot of practice. An archer found at the bottom of a ladder in the Mary Rose wreck (written up in Nat Geog a fair while back), identified by his quarrel which was still slung around his shoulder, had a twisted spine and flattened left ulna from the strain of following his calling. Longbow archers were speciailsts and paid more than ordinary foot soldiers. A good one could get several aimed shots in the air at once.

    In Harold's day I should have thought that someone who happened to be a good archer (albeit with a shorter bow) would have brought his weapon of choice with him for a bit of snap shooting.