The Choice

Series 2 - Episode 5 The Choice



You have to keep reminding yourself that The Borgias was created and (in the case of this episode) written by Neil Jordan. Yes, the Neil Jordan. A ripe Roman soap opera feels a long way from the kind of films Jordan is famous for, such as Mona Lisa and The Crying Game, but he clearly enjoys mining the decadence and hypocrisy of the Renaissance Catholic Church for dramatic effect.

This episode sees the return to the plot of Savonarola, the ranting Dominican friar (played by Stephen Berkoff, for the second time in his career) who is stirring up the faithful against the Pope and his carnal cardinals. Among the latter, Cesare sets off on a diplomatic mission to Caterina Sforza (Gina McKee) that ends up more missionary than he planned.


The Pope takes it upon himself to deal with Savonarola in Florence and sends Cesare to Caterina's stronghold in Forli to broker a deal, but needs to offer more than Alexander VI's uncompromising terms to gain peace. Meanwhile, Micheletto's past catches up with him as he reacquaints himself with his home city. Drama, starring Jeremy Irons and Francois Arnaud.

Cast & Crew

Rodrigo Borgia Jeremy Irons
Cesare Borgia Francois Arnaud
Lucrezia Borgia Holliday Grainger
Giulia Farnese Lotte Verbeek
Juan Borgia David Oakes
Micheletto Corella Sean Harris
Giuliano della Rovere Colm Feore
King Charles VIII Michel Muller
Caterina Sforza Gina McKee
Vanozza Cattaneo Joanne Whalley
Girolamo Savonarola Steven Berkoff
Director Kari Skogland
Writer Neil Jordan
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