About the Show

This lavish documentary journeys to the ancient heart of Mexico in search of the lost civilisation of the Aztecs and their last and greatest ruler, Montezuma II (1502-1520). From his uncle, Montezuma inherited an empire of five million people, stretching from present-day Mexico to Nicaragua. His rule was marked by incessant warfare. Enemy states were growing more powerful and conquered tribes becoming more rebellious. Within months of taking the throne in 1502, he changed from a man of reason into a pitiless autocrat who declared himself a god, believing that fear and ruthlessness were the only ways to stop the empire falling apart. Yet it was at the hands of Cortes and the Spanish conquistadors that Montezuma met his downfall. But what was his relationship with Cortes, and why did such a ruthless leader submit to his captors with such relative ease?