Rescued from exile by a desperate Parliament, Charles II returns to the throne at the age of 30. As the Plague and the Great Fire brings London to its knees, Charles nurtures the wittiest, most lascivious and decadent court of all time. A sensitive and promiscuous lover, he entertains an array of mistresses including high-born Barbara Villiers; sparky streetwise actress Nell Gwyn and aristocratic French spy Louise de Keroualle. Still traumatised by the execution of his father, Charles is forced to play politics with the Parliament that killed him and proves himself a canny and ruthless politician. Meanwhile, with a lack of a legitimate heir, his squabbling family grow ever more frantic...
Not 100% accurate but a good drama.
- Charles II: The Power and the Passion review by Big Bob
Some historical dramas really do play havoc with historical detail in order to make good viewing. This one isn't as bad as some, and the historical back story and fears of the establishment and the population in the aftermath of the Civil War are reasonably welll handled. The hanging-drawing-and-quartering scenes are of course not accurately depicted. That would be extremely difficult to do given the brutality and detail of what is involved in that type of execution, so why bother? What we have is a rather curious invention by the director/writers which is rather horrible but gives a false impression. It would have been better to have the sentences read out in court and leave the rest to the imagination. However, if you want to reflect on the precarious state of Britain post-Civil War, and how this might have led to the supplanting of the Stuart monarchy with what was a Dutch takeover by any other name, then it is an entertaining series peppered with the odd bit of salaciousness.