1 9 6 7 (UK)
16 x 25 minute episodes
This 1967 BBC series was a sequel to the faithful 1966 series of The Three Musketeers with most of the same cast – although Joss Ackland replaced Jeremy Brett as the no longer youthful D’Artagnan.
Set in 1649, D’Artagnan is now a leathery professional soldier and a lieutenant in the King’s special guard but has fallen on lean times and is yearning for action.
The wise, melancholy Athos (Jeremy Young) has retired, Aramis (played now by John Woodvine) is now a priest – although his cassock cloaks a hunger for further intrigue and romance – and Porthos (Brian Blessed) has married and settled into a comfortable, if unadventurous, life in the countryside.
The boy King Louis XIV (Louis Selwyn), is officially on his throne with his mother, Anne (Carole Potter), constantly fearing for his life. In the meantime, Cardinal Mazarin (William Dexter) is plotting and scheming whilst pulling all the royal strings.
D’Artagnan is the only one left in the army and is responsible for the transportation of the arrested President Broussel (Charles Carson), Mazarin’s arch-enemy. On the way to jail, an angry mob causes enough distraction for D’Artagnan’s old enemy Rochefort (Edward Brayshaw) to free Brousell, who in turn plots to free the Prince de Beaufort (John Quentin) from his castle prison.
D’Artagnan has no alternative but to reunite the musketeers. Initially, though, D’Artagnan and Porthos are in the opposite camp to the other two and personal loyalties – voiced in the cry “All for one, one for all” – are strained to breaking point.
Swords flash and flagons fly, and every episode quivers with suspense and hot-blooded action.
This 16-episode series was a dramatisation of Alexandre Dumas’s Twenty Years After. Many scenes were filmed at historic sites like Bodiam Castle and the Royal Naval College at Greenwich in London.
The first eight episodes were directed by Jugh David, with Christopher Barry directing the remainder.
King Louis XIV
Prince de Beaufort
Monsignor de Gondy
Madame de Beauvais
Madame de Longueville
Lord de Winter
Defiance | Treason | Conspiracy | Conflict | Peril | Abduction | The Boy King | Rebellion | Escape | The Oath | The Trial | The Scaffold | Treachery | Hunted | Captured | The Last Enemy