The Black Adder: Season 1, Episode 2

Born to Be King (22 Jun. 1983)

TV Episode  -   -  Comedy | History
7.6
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When Edmund's Scottish lands are given to the King's Supreme Commander, Douglas McAngus, he plots revenge.

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Title: Born to Be King (22 Jun 1983)

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Cast

Episode cast overview:
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...
...
...
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Robert East ...
Harry, Prince of Wales
...
Angus Deayton ...
Jumping Jew of Jerusalem
Joolia Cappleman ...
Celia, Countess of Cheltenham
Martin Clarke ...
Sir Dominick Prique of Stratford
Martin Soan ...
2nd Wooferoonie
Malcolm Hardee ...
3rd Wooferoonie
David Nunn ...
Messenger
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Storyline

When Edmund's Scottish lands are given to the King's Supreme Commander, Douglas McAngus, he plots revenge.

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Comedy | History

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Release Date:

22 June 1983 (UK)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

This episode is largely a remake of the original unaired pilot. Differences in the original pilot include:
  • The pilot was set during the 16th-century Elizabethan era (which would later be the setting for Black-Adder II (1986)). However, the queen (unnamed, but whose portrayal strongly resembles Elizabeth I) is married to the also-unnamed king.


  • The king is not at the crusades, but at home.


  • Edmund's plot to kill McAngus involves a hanging with a fake rope, not a staged stabbing with a real dagger. The plan backfires in much the same way.


  • The King, Prince Henry and Baldrick are played by different actors, respectively John Savident, Robert Bathurst and Philip Fox.


  • Edmund's personality is sarcastic and Machiavellian, much more like his descendants in the later seasons; likewise, Baldrick's character is closer to the simpleton dogsbody of later incarnations.


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Goofs

When Richard IV returns from killing the "Turks", he has both shoulder armours on. When he notices Edmund standing in Harry's place at the table he moves forward, revealing his right shoulder armour is missing. After he steps up, a camera change reveals his right shoulder armour back in place again. See more »

Quotes

Prince Edmund: [attempting to prove that Harry isn't really the King's son] These letters are dated November and December 1460. Which, Harry, in relation to your date of birth is precisely nine months...
Harry: AFTER I was born!
[Edmund looks horrified]
McAngus: But about nine months before your birth, Edmund!
Prince Edmund: Ohh... you bastard!
Harry: No, I think that you're the bastard, Edmund.
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Crazy Credits

Cast in Geographical Order See more »

Connections

Remake of The Black Adder: Original Pilot See more »

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User Reviews

Another excellent episode.
1 January 2010 | by (Hampshire, England) – See all my reviews

Episode 2, Born To Be King, was originally shown as episode 4, and is a remake of the un-aired pilot, which featured a slightly different cast; it sees Prince Edmund (Rowan Atkinson) plotting revenge against a wild Scottish warrior, McAngus (Alex Norton), who has been granted ownership of Edmund's lands by Prince Harry (Robert East) as reward for his bravery in battle against the Turks. However, slimy Edmund alters his plan to kill Douglas when he discovers that the man is in possession of letters written by his mother, the Queen, which cast doubt over Harry's lineage.

Baldrick (Tony Robinson) dressed as a bearded woman; a troupe of jumping Jews (including a young Angus Deayton); an entertainer by the name of Jerry Merriweather, whose chickens lay eggs; Edmund offering a collection of wigs, codpieces and a grundlestretcher (whatever that may be) in exchange for his life: just some of the amazingly silly and utterly hilarious moments cooked up by writers Richard Curtis and Rowan Atkinson for this sidesplitting episode of The Black Adder. No opportunity to mock medieval history is missed, with the terminology used by the Queen in her racy love letters being the highlight of the show, (especially with Edmund relishing every last salacious word).


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