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TV Preview: "The Tudors"

TV Preview: "The Tudors"

Showtime may be giving HBO a run for its money when it comes to cutting-edge programming. The premium cable channel has already proven itself with "The L Word" and "Weeds," and as HBO wonders what comes after "The Sopranos," Showtime is getting critical acclaim for its groundbreaking radio-to-TV series "This American Life."

Its next big buzz-maker could be "The Tudors," which premieres Sunday, April 1, at 10 P.M. EDT. If you can't wait, or if you don't have Showtime, you can watch episodes one and two online now. For more on the show and to see a trailer,

Tackling one of the most sordid and fascinating historical sagas in, well, history, "The Tudors" stars Jonathan Rhys Meyers as a young King Henry VIII, right around the time of that whole schism with the Catholic Church thing. I'm not sure how I feel about Meyers, but from what I can tell so far, he plays Henry with an appropriate mix of gravitas and lust.

The show also features a great supporting cast, with the always satisfying Jeremy Northam and some talents who haven't surfaced much lately, including Gabrielle Anwar as Princess Margaret and Sam Neill, who plays Cardinal Wolsey.

Though I'm normally a sucker for historical entertainment, I just watched the first episode, and it seems a little flat, with the dialog alternating between listless and totally over the top. However, it's also chock full of ego and sex, and the real-life story certainly isn't lacking drama, so I can see myself getting into it. Watch the trailer below and tell me what you think.


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