It nearly made my head explode, so who knows what it could do to an actual historian. While I was in the Metrocentre, I had a quick look at the recently released DVDs, including the realm of terror known as “straight to DVD” movies. These are the things they couldn’t persuade anyone to show in cinemas, possibly because they allow complete idiots to write the descriptions. Case in point, an item calling itself William the Conqueror. I’m assuming the line below the title is a tag rather than part of the title, but just in case it isn’t the thing you need to avoid is called Fear will reign.
Surely a bit of history can’t be all that bad? Well, how about this description from the back of the box:
Let’s have a quick run through, shall we?
“It is the year 1066” – OK, good so far, got that bit right.
“William, the Nobel son of the late Duke of Normandy” – leaving aside the suggestion that William the Bastard was involved with some Swedish prizes, rather than being noble, by 1066 William had been Duke of Normandy for over 30 years, making this reference a bit odd. But there’s worse to come…
“…in a bid to seize rightful power of his home-land” – William was a Norman. They occupied part of what we now know as France, and were descended from Vikings. England was definitely not William’s homeland, much less his “home-land”. As to the rightfulness of his claim, well, that’s actually one for historians to discuss.
“…which has come under threat by rebel traitors…” – there is something in that, but King Harold’s army had seen them off quite nicely.
“…claiming to be an heir to his throne..” – whose throne? Harold had been proclaimed King in a manner consistent with the way Anglo-Saxons did things. The claims over who was most entitled to the English throne get a bit complicated…
“…a bloody battle entails…” – I don’t think that’s the word they’re looking for, somehow. Ensues, perhaps?
“The rest is history” – Well, that would be an improvement.
This seems to have been written by someone with no knowledge (even of the watched a few TV documentaries level) of history and a very shaky grasp of English. Does nobody check these things before they’re printed?
That’s the worst one I’ve seen since some asteroid-type disaster movie referred to its astronomer protagonist as “a female astrologist”…
Oh, and the cover to watch out for, or avoid looks like this:
 Well, I’m assuming they’re complete – for all I know there might be some bits missing
 As he was affectionately known
 Which he was, what with being a Duke and all that
 Not that they would have used that label themselves, more than likely