The White Queen: Season 1 (2013)

Season 1
The White Queen

Critics Consensus

Though it sometimes suffers from clunky storytelling, The White Queen still delivers sufficient intrigue, thanks to its gorgeous costumes, splendid cast, and sexy, soapy plots.



Critic Ratings: 20


Audience Score

User Ratings: 171

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Air date: Aug 10, 2013

After meeting beautiful widow Elizabeth Woodville, young King Edward IV must choose between love and loyalty. Will a country divided by war and a court divided by jealousy be destroyed by a woman many consider a witch?

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Air date: Aug 17, 2013

After Elizabeth's coronation, an extravagant display designed to silence critics of their marriage, Edward needs a son to secure his reign. But tensions at court escalate into outright war and Edward must fight those closest to him to retain his crown. Elizabeth faces devastating loss as the full force of Warwick's hatred is revealed.

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Air date: Aug 24, 2013

Desperate to further her son's claim to the throne, Margaret Beaufort joins Warwick's rebellion against Edward. The rebellion fails and the traitors must run for their lives. Jasper Tudor escapes into exile, while Warwick and George sail for France. Elizabeth and Jacquetta turn to witchcraft to stop them, but it is Isabel who is punished.

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Air date: Sep 7, 2013

Exiled in France, Warwick still plots to control the crown. His youngest daughter Anne is used to make an unexpected alliance, giving him command of a huge army. When Warwick lands in England, Edward must decide whether to fight or run. Terrified, Elizabeth escapes to sanctuary, not knowing if her husband is alive or dead. She gives birth to a longed-for son, but is in fear for her life as Warwick enters London.

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Air date: Sep 14, 2013

Lancaster is restored to the throne, with Warwick in control. But rumours that Edward is returning with an army unsettle the court. Anne and Margaret of Anjou sail from France, uncertain they will reach Warwick in time to win. Divided families face each other across the battlefield. Can Elizabeth's witchcraft save her husband, or will Warwick triumph? As many fall in the battle, everyone's fortunes change forever.

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Air date: Sep 21, 2013

The crown is secure, but there is no peace at court. Elizabeth suffers more emotional turmoil as she loses those closest to her. Margaret Beaufort plans a political marriage to bring Henry home from exile - but has she met her match in Lord Stanley? Anne's marriage made her a traitor, so she is handed into George's care. His motives for keeping her away from court are questioned by Richard, who fears for Anne's safety.

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Air date: Sep 28, 2013

George's anger at losing the Warwick inheritance and his failure to capture the crown resurfaces, with horrific consequences. As the court divides, George openly accuses Elizabeth of witchcraft and Edward of murder. This is treason, and Edward must condemn his own brother to death. Elizabeth finally has revenge on those who killed her father, but it does not bring her comfort.

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Air date: Oct 5, 2013

Dark days could be ahead for King Edward as all the key players look to connive and even kill their way into being named "His or Her Majesty." -- (C) Starz

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Air date: Oct 12, 2013

Margaret and Queen Elizabeth scheme against each other.

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Air date: Oct 19, 2013

A new generation of power-seekers emerges in the Season 1 finale.

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The White Queen: Season 1 Photos

Tv Season Info

Court intrigue, murder, romance and seduction drive this historical drama about the quest of three women and those around them who will stop at nothing in their efforts to become queen of England. The series begins in 1463, as a secret wedding between widowed commoner Elizabeth Woodville (Rebecca Ferguson) and King Edward IV (Max Irons) kicks off a deadly power struggle. Believing that her son, Henry Tudor, is destined to mount the throne, and determined to see it happen, royal cousin Margaret Beaufort (Amanda Hale) begins to take manipulative steps to see her dream come true, while Anne Neville (Faye Marsay), the daughter of influential Lord Warwick (James Frain) also known as "The Kingmaker," looks on as her father schemes his way to securing the crown for her.

Critic Reviews for The White Queen Season 1

All Critics (20) | Top Critics (12)

You could do worse than The White Queen.

Sep 3, 2013 | Full Review…

If it had less magic, the miniseries might really have cast a spell.

Sep 3, 2013 | Full Review…
Top Critic

The White Queen is gauzier than The Tudors, and it contains more overacting; but it scratches the same itch.

Aug 12, 2013 | Full Review…

Its success is due largely to the costumes, set dressing, and comeliness of the two leads.

Aug 8, 2013 | Full Review…

Years slip by in a moment, dismissed with clunky exposition, the rooms with their hangings become interchangeable and claustrophobic, and though some windows shine brightly, it becomes increasingly difficult to see the kingdom for the queens.

Jan 6, 2014 | Full Review…

[Max] Irons, ... along with the rest of the cast, makes The White Queen an entertaining romp through a complicated and fascinating period of English history.

Aug 14, 2013 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

It's pretty and toothless, far lighter than its source material, and nothing like as thrilling as it should, or could, be.

Oct 10, 2018 | Full Review…

As a love story set in an impossibly chivalrous past, this was deliciously enjoyable. The conflict between the houses of Lancaster and York ceased to matter -- the crucial conflict was between Innocence and Experience.

Nov 6, 2017 | Full Review…

If you can brush aside concerns about historical accuracy (including a 15th century that seems a lot cleaner than you'd expect), 'The White Queen' is a rewarding experience.

Jul 29, 2015 | Full Review…

The White Queen is tremendously entertaining.

Feb 21, 2014 | Rating: 8/10 | Full Review…

Like a Masterpiece Classic on steroids, Starz's 10-part historical potboiler The White Queen is ripe with juicy intrigue of the royal and romantic variety, ripping bodices with pay-cable aplomb.

Jan 6, 2014 | Full Review…

Part soap opera, part war film, and part melodrama, this series is an intoxicating jaunt through a snippet of British history fraught with contentious loyalties and lethal power struggles.

Aug 8, 2013 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The White Queen: Season 1

  • Jul 11, 2020
    Strong performances by the cast help to strengthen what occasionally becomes a courtroom soap opera.
  • Jan 09, 2020
    I just watched the first episode and enjoyed the acting, the set, and the story line.
  • Feb 04, 2019
    Great reenactments of a turbulent real story in england. Gripping and totally worthy of the series treatment.
  • May 04, 2018
    I loved this show and the actors were perfectly cast.
  • Apr 07, 2018
    Good stuff. But if watching this as a binge you'll notice a couple of themes that become repetitive: Who'll marry whom and the transactional value of women by contractual marriages, that and their schemes to manipulate their lot ... rinse & repeat, etc. However strong performances from a good cast keep it watchable. Of interest, Tom Cruise said this is where he found Rebecca Ferguson for "MI: Rogue" - where she almost stole the show and will be back for "MI: Fallout" (2018). Of add'l interest is "Poldark's" Eleanor Tomlinson, or Demelza; she's here, too! | ~ Norm de Guerre
  • Sep 15, 2017
    The British always do it better! This pretty and complex series is a great way to learn about the history of the War of the Roses and see how the desire for the crown of England was a ticket to war and death. The acting is superb, the costumes are stunning and the storyline is all true!! Each episode is quite intense and engrossing. The actors play their characters with great skill and banter with rich dialogue. We can really feel the variety of emotions as if we were transported back in time. This series offers a great perspective about live in medieval times and the relationships among royal families. The partnership with BBC definitely elevated the program to a higher level. So much better than any made-up novels or fantasy tales. Absolutely truth is stranger than fiction--so enjoy, be entertained, and educated!
  • Aug 20, 2016
    Great historical drama, with a brilliant performance by Rebecca Ferguson. Very tempered story telling, dramatic but not over the top as in others similar to its kind.
  • May 25, 2016
    I'm two episodes in, and I'm enjoying all the intrigue! Fun show!
  • Feb 27, 2016
    Comprima si schimba istoria dar Ferguson si alti cativa actori sunt foarte buni
  • Feb 17, 2016
    I absolutely loved this mini-series. Gorgeous costumes, realistic scenery, intrigue, treachery, lies, unexpected twists and a torrid love story. Seriously, what more could you ask for?

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