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Warrior Queen 

It is 61. The Romans rule Britain. Prasutagus, King of the Iceni, is dying. In his will, he bequeaths one half of his kingdom to his two daughters; the other half is to be ceded to the ... See full summary »






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Series cast summary:
Siân Phillips ...  Queen Boudicca 6 episodes, 1978
Michael Gothard ...  Volthan 6 episodes, 1978
Patti Love ...  Tasca 6 episodes, 1978
Veronica Roberts Veronica Roberts ...  Camora 6 episodes, 1978
Tony Haygarth ...  Morticcus 5 episodes, 1978
Darien Angadi Darien Angadi ...  Kuno 5 episodes, 1978
Nigel Hawthorne ...  Catus Decianus 4 episodes, 1978
Manning Wilson Manning Wilson ...  Antonius 4 episodes, 1978
Laurence Harrington Laurence Harrington ...  Marcellus 3 episodes, 1978
David Leland David Leland ...  Agricola 3 episodes, 1978
Stanley Meadows ...  Suetonius Paulinus 3 episodes, 1978


It is 61. The Romans rule Britain. Prasutagus, King of the Iceni, is dying. In his will, he bequeaths one half of his kingdom to his two daughters; the other half is to be ceded to the Roman Emperor, Nero. Prasutagus' widow, Queen Boudicca, invites the Roman Procurator, Catus Decianus, to attend his burial. Catus Decianus, however, has no intention of attending "this flea-bitten King's funeral". Instead, he arrives when it is over. It is an ominous sign. Written by GusF

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Plot Keywords:

ancient rome | See All (1) »


Drama | History | War







Release Date:

20 February 1978 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Thames Television See more »
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Technical Specs


(6 episodes)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

You are there, 61 AD, in a Xena-free zone
24 August 2003 | by F Gwynplaine MacIntyreSee all my reviews

The British always do a much better job at historical drama than the Americans, and 'Warrior Queen' is splendid proof of that. This series takes place in the year 61 AD, and recounts the story of Boadicea, the queen of the Icene tribe of native Britons who rebelled against the invading Roman legions. I've used the traditional spellings here ... but in the TV series, the queen's name is given as Boudicca, and her tribe are called the Iceni. Unless a time machine is available, nobody will ever know the authentic pronunciations.

Queen Boudicca is played, dynamically, by Sian Phillips. Her best-known role is as Livia in 'I, Claudius', but I think she gives a better (and deeper) characterisation here. She's surprisingly sexy in this role, yet entirely believable as the spiritual and military leader of a determined tribe whose lands and lives are under threat. This is no 'Xena, Warrior Princess'. The actress's Irish accent is no anachronism, as we've no idea how these people actually spoke.

The most fascinating parts of this series are the exterior scenes filmed at a rebuilt Iron Age settlement in Petersfield. These sequences are so chillingly authentic, I had no difficulty believing that I was watching actual events of 2000 years ago, with the original participants.

The only flaw here is the performance of Nigel Hawthorne as the Roman procurator, commander of the occupying forces determined to subjugate or destroy Queen Boudicca. A comparatively obscure actor at this point in his career, Hawthorne gives a dry, sly, wry performance that's slightly too droll for these dead-earnest proceedings. Two years later, Hawthorne would become famous on the sitcom 'Yes, Minister'. Watching his performance here in full Roman drag as Catus Decianus, it's difficult (in hindsight) not to think that Hawthorne is actually playing Sir Humphrey Appleby, magically propelled two millennia into the past. Still 'Warrior Queen' is a fascinating and well-made enactment of an historical era that is dramatised far too seldom.

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