Area53 banner which is a collection of lots of scattered pictures of things the blogger likes, from music artists and films to TV shows.


From the Past

Films on the to-do list

  • Armageddon Time
  • Black Widow
  • Chimes at Midnight
  • The Killing of a Sacred Deer
  • Last Christmas
  • Remember Sunday
  • Shazam! 2
  • Thor: Love and Thunder
  • Spy Guys

Horrible Histories (2011) 3.4-5

TV episodes review: Horrible Histories: 3.4, 3.5 (2011), directed by Dominic Brigstocke, Steve Connelly and/or Chloe Thomas

Wow. That’s all I can say. The series is really just better and better! Sadly, there won’t be an episode a day this week – it’s just the one, tomorrow afternoon. Oh well, at least we had all of last week to enjoy it.

The sketches are of the same high standard as has been seen in the previous three episodes, which I wrote about last week. There have been a few bits from the Frightful First World War this series, and it’s good – it’s a war I don’t know an awful lot about (I’m better with the sequel, so to speak).

And that’s the brilliant thing about Horrible Histories: you actually learn things. It’s not just for “teh lulz” that they’re doing this. It’s educational! And yes, I am (kind of) trying to learn the Ruthless Rulers song from 3.2. I’m up to “William, William, Henry, Stephen, Henry, Richard, John” after a few listens. Singing works, like I said before! And speaking of singing …

The first song of these two episodes feels like it’s from a musical, a bit like Hard Knock Life in Annie, perhaps, and is about how the Victorians used children as cheap workers.

Actually, it’s more Food, Glorious Food from Oliver! I suppose, but I’ve never seen that show (and film?), so Annie is what first came to mind. I love the kids they get on this show, they’re fab. I especially like Bertie Gilbert, his expressions crack me up. I don’t envy him having a Spartan as headmaster, though, I have to say, although it was a very funny sketch. And on a completely different (and “wooohooo!”) note, I saw Gilbert’s been cast in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2. Before opening the link to see which role he’s been cast in, I thought “oooh ooh, I hope it’s as Draco’s son!” AND HE IS!

The second song is a Lady Gaga parody – starring Cleopatra (Martha Howe-Douglas), queen of Egypt. Not only is the style of song and haircut similar, but the dancing and even the lyrics make Gaga hints. Very well done! And I don’t blame her for fancying them Romans either.

So, all we have to do now is to sit back and await tomorrow’s episode. Meanwhile, enjoy a bunch of behind the scenes clips (UK only) on the CBBC website or see the guys accepting the British Comedy Award for Best Sketch Show earlier this year (starts ca 7:10), and listen to Laurence Rickard’s hilarious acceptance speech. From which I take the parting words, as I feel they can also apply to series three:

It is still at heart a kids show, so if you’re not really, really happy for us … that’s the same as punching a baby.

Came to realise I had seriously high expectations for this series, and they have definitely lived up to them. Really well done and congratulations on a fab show, everyone!


An easily distracted and over-excited introvert who never learns to go to bed at a reasonable time. Enjoys traveling (when there's not a plague on), and taking photos of European architecture. Cares for cats, good coffee and Boardwalk Empire. A child of her time, she did media studies in school and still can't decide what she wants to be when she grows up.

6 thoughts on “Horrible Histories (2011) 3.4-5

  1. Dobby’s sock! Lovely post about Horrible Histories, but what I need to know is…do you know of/have pictures for any of the other second generation kids in HP7.2?!? And if so, could you please maybe do a post about that, or just leave a comment and tell me? Thanks.

  2. Just Google it, it’s quicker. 😉 Lindsay at Confessions of a Bookworm wrote about the epilogue kids (with pictures) a while back. Highly recommended! 🙂

  3. You know, it’s funny, I was googling for HH stuff, and then I realised “hey, that’s Traxy”, and it was shiny. I mean, because the net is so huge, and I don’t generally expect my friends to show up among the top hits on google if I’m not specifically looking for them.

    Just in case you’re wondering what magic key words led me to you, it’s “lady gaga horrible histories”, because I heard someone say the HH gang had to ask Gaga for permission to do that song and wanted to check if it was true or not… so far, no luck. 😉

  4. Gaya! *hugs* Small world, isn’t it? 😀

    Haven’t heard anything about HH needing Gaga’s permission, but I don’t really see why they would. They’ve not borrowed the song from her, they’re only parodying her style, and you can do that without needing permission.

  5. It is indeed a small world, and yes, I found the permission-asking rather unlikely too, which was why I decided to look it up. The fact that I’ve been unable to substantiate it at all points to it being a loose rumour.

    They are doing a little more than parodying her style, there are some definite references to Lady Gaga in there… the “ra ra” in the beginning could of course be a reference to the sun-god Ra, but more likely it’s a reference to the beginning of Bad Romance… “Guys go all gaga for me”.. then there’s the phrases “bad romance”, “poker face”, “paparazzi”… and there’s a bit where she’s going all “fashion” this and that, which is also kind of reminiscent of Bad Romance… ehm. I’ve listened plenty to Gaga’s songs, yes. :look

    Seeing as the UK apparently don’t have the same rules as the US re: parody being considered fair use… it’s not entirely impossible they asked for permission, to be on the safe side… but then again, the actual song is an original, soooo… yes. I dunno. I’m probably overanalyzing this.

    In other news, I’m going to take a trip to the UK this fall/winter sometime, and some of my priorities of things to do while I’m there involve hanging out with you a bit, if possible, and also getting HH on dvd, because it’s kind of hard to find over here. 😉

    1. I know you have the DVDs now (and it was a shame we couldn’t meet up), but you might be able to find them on Discshop.se – or if you have a credit card (or use an eCard service from your bank), Play.com have free shipping to Sweden.

      They make a pastiche of a song or artist and often they’ll throw in the sort of hints like “poker face” etc. In the Cleopatra song, it’s very forced – in the Dick Turpin song, it flows better (eg. “Prince Charming” and “Stand and deliver”, referring to Adam and the Ants).

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