World Without End

Series 1 - Episode 5

World Without End
Radio Times
Review by:
David Butcher

Apparently, when you caught bubonic plague in medieval Europe, you could be chatting away happily, carousing at a feast, say, and then suddenly – he-hem! – out of the blue you’d start coughing up blood and a look of horror would cross your face.

That sort of thing happens to a string of characters tonight as “the great mortality” reaches Kingsbridge and a terrible pestilence descends on the script. Lively plotting gives way to groaning and misery as the bodies pile up and the make-up department has a field day. Wicked prior Godwyn argues the disease is God’s punishment. Merthin suggests using linen masks. And Charlotte Riley as Caris continues to act with such quiet intensity, taking the tosh with complete seriousness, that she saves the day.

About this programme

5/6. After his wife and child die from the pandemic sweeping across Europe, Merthin returns from Italy and urges Caris to elope with him, but she refuses. The Plague hits Kingsbridge and Godwyn is so terrified he sneaks out of the priory, taking most of the monks and treasure with him. Convinced she is dying, a scarred and vengeful Petranilla sends Roland a rose contaminated with her infected blood.

Cast and crew


Cynthia Nixon
Sir Thomas Langley
Ben Chaplin
Caris Wooler
Charlotte Riley
Nora von Waldstatten
Ralph Fitzgerald
Oliver Jackson-Cohen
Queen Isabella
Aure Atika
Sir Roland
Peter Firth
Rupert Evans
Merthin Fitzgerald
Tom Weston-Jones
Tom Cullen
Sarah Gadon


Michael Caton-Jones
Executive Producer
Ridley Scott
Executive Producer
Tony Scott
Executive Producer
Jonas Bauer
Executive Producer
David W Zucker
Executive Producer
Rola Bauer
Executive Producer
Tim Halkin
Executive Producer
John Weber
John Pielmeier