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The Serpent QueenThe Serpent Queen

The Serpent Queen

A refreshingly unrestrained look at one of history's greatest monarchs

Drama, History

best
THE VERY BEST

8.5

show

United States of America
English
Binge-Worthy, Character-driven, Dark
2022
Amrita Acharia, Barry Atsma, Beth Goddard
49 min

Synopsis

rotten tomatoes
imdb
wikipedia
Considered an immigrant, common and plain, Catherine de Medici is married into the 16th century French court as an orphaned teenager expected to bring a fortune in dowry and produce many heirs, only to discover that her husband is in love with an older woman, her dowry is unpaid and she’s unable to concieve. Yet, only with her intelligence and determination, she manages to keep her marriage alive and masters the bloodsport that is the monarchy better than anyone else, ruling France for 50 years.

Our Take

8.5
The Staff

Despite being released amid a deluge of period dramas and biopics, Starz’s  The Serpent Queen, which follows Catherine de’ Medici’s rise from Italian servant to Queen of France, is a strong standout in today’s streaming fare. 

By balancing modern storytelling (expect poppy needle drops and fourth-wall breaks a la Fleabag) and historical realism (the costume and production design are as accurate and detailed as any thoughtful production), The Serpent Queen manages to have a genuinely fresh take on the historical drama. It’s also refreshing in its refusal to sugarcoat history’s crude ways, so despite its modern feel, don’t be too surprised to see 13-year-olds bedded and bodies graphically pulled apart by horses.

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