1 9 7 8 (UK)
6 x 30 minute episodes
This drama series from Thames Television starred Siân Phillips as Queen Boudicca (Boadicea) who led the Iceni in a revolt against the Romans in AD 61.
Seventeen years earlier, Boudicca’s husband, Prasutagus, had formed a treaty with Rome giving him peace and independence under their rule. Now the dying Prasutagus bequeaths half of his kingdom to his two daughters, Tasca (Patti Love) and Camora (Veronica Roberts), and the other half to Emperor Nero.
Boudicca believes that the prosperity of their land depends on the maintenance of peace with Rome. She, therefore, attempts to please the empire by giving her husband a Roman burial, rather than the traditional Celtic one.
Boudicca invites the Roman tax collector, Catus Decianus (Nigel Hawthorne), to the burial. Things start to go wrong, however, when Decianus announces that the treaty with Rome is finished and that her people will now be required to pay him tax. War is inevitable.
Warrior Queen was recorded entirely on tape and on location in order to speed up production. The piece is weighty in dialogue, coming across like I, Claudius for kiddies.
The scene of Boudicca’s last battle was filmed at Gomshall in Surrey. Other scenes for the series were filmed at the Butser Ancient Farm in Petersfield, Hants, where a full-scale model of an Iron Age settlement was built.
The camera would usually cut away at the most brutal moments, while battle scenes seemed rather flat due to the static positioning of the camera.