I feel for the young Victoria, for I, too, am short. It really is something how much condescension one must endure simply for being a woman of non-statuesque proportions.
I’m waiting for her to respond to someone like Uncle Leopold with a stern-voiced “with all due respect, sir, need I remind you who’s queen?” and a murderous glare. Unleash your womanly roar, Vicky!
I now find myself approaching the programme with a measure of trepidation, knowing that in spite of the utterly incandescent longing that sparkles between Victoria and Lord M, she’s at some point going to marry some chap or other called Albert with the sort of weedy moustache that wouldn’t be out of place gracing the upper lip of an old-man-shorts wearing hipster today – there’s even a real-life museum named after them.
I feel almost betrayed by how much chemistry Sewell and Coleman have onscreen because I’m fairly sure they don’t secretly run away together. Albert, schmalbert. Even Miss Skerrett confesses to shipping it when the downstairs crew agree to take bets on who will become Mr. Victoria.
Speaking of the lovely Miss Skerrett, whenever will Mr. Francatelli get it that she’s just not that into him, even if he does make his own sweets.
Meanwhile, Conroy continues to do an excellent job of making me want to punch him in the mouth, which I suppose is a testament to a character well-realised by all involved; in this case, an utterly noxious fart of a man.
After all, Victoria might be young – and her behaviour does occasionally betray this – but a queen needs a husband just as much as a puppy needs a hazelnut flat white. How satisfying it is when she reminds Conroy exactly who he’s talking to. Yas queen!
This is a stressful episode. It makes one grateful for being common and therefore no one giving a donkey’s doo-dah if you just marry whomever you fancy. Oh yeah, I guess the whole thing with Chartists and their reasons for being unhappy citizens. I guess. But mostly Victoria and Melbourne, rooks and orchids, and how utterly, tragically fond of each other they are.
Way to go and break my heart, historical fact.
Aired at 9pm on Sunday 4 September 2016 on ITV.
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