As the episode begins, Elizabeth (Essie Davis) receives a letter from Burgundy detailing her son’s slow uprising. Henry VII (Jacob Collins-Levy) supervises his sons as they practice their swordsmanship. The Duchess of Burgundy receives another letter from Elizabeth. She invites the King to Richard’s upcoming wedding. Henry receives the letter and contemplates his move. Jasper (Vincent Regan) encourages Henry to refuse the invitation. Seconds later, Richard Pole (Andrew Whipp) informs Maggie (Rebecca Benson) that they have been summoned by the King. Maggie doesn’t want to leave, but she has no choice. During the visit, Maggie stops by and sees Teddy (Albert de Jongh). The boy has grown considerably. He has also become withdrawn and awkward.Maggie tells Teddy about her son, Henry (Jamie Sharpe). Teddy isn’t happy about Maggie using that name. Next, Maggie and Richard appear in front of Henry. They’re told to travel to Burgundy and have a look at the boy. Henry makes it clear that he wants Maggie to deny the boy as her cousin. Afterwards, Maggie takes a stroll with Lizzie (Jodie Comer). Both women admit they’re currently happy with their lives and husbands. Then, the two discuss whether or not the boy could actually be Richard. Lizzie refuses to believe it. Instead, she accuses her mother of attempting to bring down her husband once again. Maggie and her husband leave the city shorter afterwards. Margaret (Michelle Fairley) contemplates whether Maggie can be trusted. Henry seems convinced she is trustworthy.
Then, Margaret argues with her husband. She insists she is selfless and has put God’s will first. Lizzie visits her mother. Lizzie reminds her mother that she has cared for her over the past few years. Lizzie tells her mother to stop plotting with the Duchess of Burgundy. Lizzie is given a letter describing her brother’s health and success. Elizabeth sighs. It is clear she has become ill. She remains adamant that the boy is indeed Richard. Elizabeth admits she would love to spend the rest of her days alongside her daughter. She is taken in front of Henry. Henry tells Elizabeth that he hopes being close to Lizzie will help her recover with haste. Next, Henry learns about new traitors and a possible rebellion in the making. Henry is told that the letters name him as Henry the Pretender. Prince Richard is honored as the Duke of York.
Lizzie makes it clear their son, Harry, is the Duke of York. She encourages Henry to ennoble the boy. For once, Margaret agrees with Lizzie. Henry agrees, as Maggie arrives in Burgundy. Maggie and her husband meet the Duchess. Then, Maggie speaks with her grandmother. She is told about Cathy Gordon (Amy Manson), who is cousin to King James of Scotland. Jasper speaks with Margaret about the preparations for the upcoming event. It is clear Jasper’s health is deteriorating quickly. Jasper speaks kindly of his wife. Margaret reminds him that they’ll always share Henry. The ceremony is carried out making Harry the official Duke of York. Meanwhile, the celebrations begin in Burgundy. Richard is paraded in front of his cousin. Maggie and Richard sit beside one another and speak about their pasts. Maggie seems skeptical of his true identity.
While Henry and Lizzie celebrate, Elizabeth emerges on the balcony. She tells the couple that Richard is the real Duke of York. Lizzie lashes out at her mother. Once things calm down, Elizabeth speaks with Margaret. Elizabeth tells her that she has blood on her hands and will be punished for her sins. Margaret also learns about the promise Richard made, before he left his mother. Back in Burgundy, the Duchess tells everyone about Richard’s exile. She admits there is much to be done. Then, the Duchess announces Richard’s engagement to Cathy Gordon. Back at home, Lizzie is forced to reprimand her kids for chatting about Margaret. Then, she tries to calm her husband’s nerves. She explains that her mother only has lies. She shows her husband affection. That night, Margaret prepares to wash her hands. When she looks down, she imagines her hands are covered in blood. Then, she rushes to the chapel and prays.
Jasper confronts Margaret and asks her about her worries. Margaret reveals that one of the princes got away. She also alludes to the fact that she had Elizabeth’s boys slaughtered. She remains convinced that it was God’s will. Jasper doesn’t believe so. The Duchess of Burgundy makes it clear the Richard will fight for the throne. Maggie speaks with her grandmother. She learns about her concerns that Richard’s marriage will lead to a war. In the morning, Maggie expresses her concerns to her husband. He insists it is best to remain loyal to Henry. He also confirms his duty is finished and they should return as soon as possible. Meanwhile, Henry discusses the upcoming wedding with his closest acquaintances. Lizzie insists Cathy isn’t a major score and therefore the others must not be convinced of Richard’s identity either. It is suggested that the Duchess may just be taunting Henry.
Henry makes it clear he wishes to discuss things with his uncle. Maggie and her husband return to town. Again, Richard pleads with Maggie to confirm that the boy is a fraud. When taken in front of the King, Maggie does just that. Richard has also returned with proof of treachery. Henry looks at the letters sent to Burgundy and calls out names. The men are taken away by guards. Elizabeth’s name is called out. Surprisingly, one of the traitors is William Stanley. Stanley professes his loyalty to Richard, before being led away by guards. Margaret and Henry agree that the traitors must be punished severely. Jasper’s wife enters and tells Henry that he wishes to speak with him. Margaret offers to speak with Jasper. Henry insists he will visit him personally. Margaret ignores her son and visits Jasper anyway. During the encounter, Jasper makes it clear he intends to tell Henry about Margaret’s betrayal.
The White Princess Review
The 5th episode of The White Princess was good, despite a few glaring blunders. First and foremost, the show and its predecessors have done a terrible job with time jumps. Several characters do age, but most do not. Despite Teddy and Richard reaching their teens, Henry, Margaret, Jasper, Elizabeth, and Lizzie didn’t look a day older. You’d think those involved would’ve learned from their past mistakes.
Also, the murder of Jasper Tudor felt lame. This could be contributed to the original material. The act may have been effective in the book, but it fell flat here. It should have worked, but it didn’t. Nevertheless, the episode wasn’t bad. While it wasn’t easy, Maggie proved her loyalty to Henry. Lizzie has moved herself closer to Henry. And of course, it seems Henry and his mother are slowly losing control over the kingdom.
Henry’s remaining grasp over the Kingdom could slip away when Lizzie and the others realize Richard is indeed Richard of York. The episode scores a 7 out of 10. Catch up with previous recaps of The White Princess right now!