Hilary Mantel’s two novels about Thomas Cromwell and Henry VIII have been transferred to television with the title of Wolf Hall, and the first episode (on PBS) was—is—tastefully and intelligently presented.  At present Cromwell (Mark Rylance) is secretary to Cardinal Wolsey (Jonathan Pryce, and great) and although the corrupt clergyman likes him, hardly anyone else does.  A stand-offish Protestant, smart and willful, he will, I assume from what history exposes, turn ruthless.

Mantel’s books are not for me, but I’m looking forward to seeing further episodes of Wolf Hall.  Probably it will be just as, or more, enjoyable than the Showtime series, The Tudors, and less sensationalistic.  The first episode, in fact, has the touch of art.