Fun! Not a moment of seriousness to be found and yet it does not aggravate. Done with such impeccable acting, writing and direction, The Great is a great farce/satire about the life of one of the most famous (infamous?) monarchs to ever rule – Catherine the Great.

Set in Russia in the 19th century, the story before the story is what we have gotten to this point in the Hulu series The Great. Season one was about young Catherine (played by Elle Fanning) being married off to the imbecile that is the Russian emperor, Peter (played by Nicholas Hoult). Arriving at his castle, she is all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed along with a generous helping of naive. Thinking she and her king are going to fall head over heels into a lifelong love is what she expects. What she gets is a dolt who will sleep with anything that moves and is so self-centred that he barely acknowledges his new bride. Adjustments are made and Catherine changes course to any man or woman for themselves. She now has herself on the throne as her main goal and Peter in her crosshairs. Well, he has to die for that plan to come true…

Season two picks up where one left off – Catherine plotting her husband’s death while being pregnant. There is a twist in it all though, as Peter has now fallen desperately in love with his pregnant wife. this does not change Catherine’s resolve to kill him one iota.

When, more or less, her plan comes to fruition (Peter is alive but she is on the throne), Catherine’s problems do not cease. There are rising tensions between Russia and the Ottoman Empire and Catherine’s mother, Joanna (played by Gillian Anderson), arrives for a visit. Lots to juggle for the young monarch. What becomes more and more tricky is her growing feelings for Peter.

Another amazing guest appearance in a fine series by Gillian Anderson. She just adds to the excellent acting going on here. It is great to see her doing something a little more lighthearted than her usual fare.

Do not expect any history lessons here. This is a farce as broad as the side of a barn! Turn to a BBC period piece to learn more about the monarchs of the world.

You cannot be easily offended if you are going to enjoy this. It is foul and crass throughout. Yet remains smart and hilarious.

Filled with outrageous lines of dialogue, crazy situations, plenty of belly laughs, impressive sets and costumes, and note-perfect comedic acting, the Great is so great that you wish there were more than 10 episodes, but alas, there are only the ten.

Special Features:

-Deleted Scenes

-Gag Reel