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Beowulf: Return to the Shieldlands 

Beowulf returns to his homeland of Herot in the Shieldlands to pay his respects to deceased king Hrothgar (William Hurt). But past jealousies mean Beowulf gets a frosty welcome, especially ... See full summary »

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James Dormer
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Cast

Series cast summary:
Kieran Bew ...  Beowulf 12 episodes, 2016
Joanne Whalley ...  Rheda 12 episodes, 2016
Ed Speleers ...  Slean 12 episodes, 2016
Laura Donnelly ...  Elvina 12 episodes, 2016
Gísli Örn Garðarsson ...  Breca 12 episodes, 2016
Jack Rowan ...  Brinni / ... 12 episodes, 2016
Elliot Cowan ...  Abrecan 12 episodes, 2016
Edward Hogg ...  Varr 12 episodes, 2016
Ellora Torchia ...  Vishka 12 episodes, 2016
Lolita Chakrabarti ...  Lila 11 episodes, 2016
Jacob Moller-Andersen Jacob Moller-Andersen ...  Wulfing Warrior 10 episodes, 2016
Graham Saxon Graham Saxon ...  Huskala 10 episodes, 2016
Alan Billingham Alan Billingham ...  Herot Villager 9 episodes, 2016
Holly Earl ...  Kela 8 episodes, 2016
Lee Boardman ...  Hane 7 episodes, 2016
Susan Aderin Susan Aderin ...  Kendra 7 episodes, 2016
Sarah MacRae Sarah MacRae ...  Saray 6 episodes, 2016
William Hurt ...  Hrothgar 5 episodes, 2016
Ian Puleston-Davies ...  Lagrathorn 5 episodes, 2016
Liam Ainsworth ...  Draven 5 episodes, 2016
Allison McKenzie ...  Arla 5 episodes, 2016
David Ajala ...  Rate 5 episodes, 2016
Ashley Thomas ...  Gil 5 episodes, 2016
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Storyline

Beowulf returns to his homeland of Herot in the Shieldlands to pay his respects to deceased king Hrothgar (William Hurt). But past jealousies mean Beowulf gets a frosty welcome, especially from Hrothgar's wife, Rheda (Joanne Whalley), and son, Slean (Ed Speelers). Written by Anon

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Details

Official Sites:

ITV [UK] | Official Facebook | See more »

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 January 2016 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Beowulf: Return to the Shieldlands See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Set in Scandinavia it is based on the epic Anglo-Saxon poem. Nobody knows when it was first written down. The only surviving manuscript was found in the library of Robert Cotton, a manuscript collector. The Beowulf manuscript was shelved under Cotton Vitellius A.XV. Datings of the poem range from the 7th to the 11th century. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Disappointing. On too late for kids, too low brow for adults.
10 January 2016 | by Pigeon_downSee all my reviews

When i saw Beowulf in the TV listings, i immediately hoped that a decent drama had been created, based on the historical poem, and produced to a high standard. I was quickly disappointed.

Although the story is very loosely based on the old English poem about a Scandinavian monster terrorising a Danish King, that is pretty much where the similarity ends. You are very quickly introduced to CGI trolls working a in human village in place of oxen, turning a wheel. It is at this point you realise the slant is farther toward the fantasy realm drama than the historical realm drama.

In terms of the characters, they are rather cliché and lacked depth. The sets are OK in parts and in others look like cheap fantasy set pieces. They also seem inconsistent as great halls with cast relief gates in bronze are hardly likely to be the product of a 20 person village. The grandeur of some of the buildings is far out of whack with the population size and any semblance of industry or agriculture.

Casting, and cast diversity - within minutes you are introduced to characters that are obviously Indian Asian, and also Black (African). There are quite a few characters with diverse ethnic origins. Again, if you were expecting something akin to the fantastic 'Vikings' or even the Stars productions like 'Spartacus' forget it.There is no attempt at historical, cultural, or geographic realism as a backdrop for this show.

A Black male actor appears in Arabic dress who speaks with a solid south England accent. I totally get diversity in a modern TV show about modern society, or even in culturally mixed locations like Rome, but in something apparently 'based' on an AngloScandinavian tale/poem it hardly fits. This reality works in both directions, if i were watching a show about the rise of a chieftain in Africa in 300BC, then i'd hardly expect to see the cast featuring heavily with Chinese and white Australian sounding actors (it just drags you out of the show). It's another element that constantly reminds the viewer that there is no historic setting for this and it is little more than a uber low budget Lord of The Rings rip off merged merged with the title Beowulf.

If this show were targeting adults, one has to ask, who watches stuff like this? The script, acting, story seems quite immature. It does feel more like a teen show, however it is on UK TV in a late evening slot. For this reason i suspect it won't pick up the viewers, and won't make a second season.


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