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S03.E05: Coup

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While the Queen travels abroad to learn about horse training, unhappiness among the British elite with the devaluation of the pound involves Lord Mountbatten in a plan to oust Harold Wilson.

Dropping on Netflix on Sunday, November 17, 2019.

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The Brits had the BEST cars in 1967.  Those Rolls were just perfection. 

(Tywin Lannister is always gonna screw people over!  That nice suit means nothing.  That palace has got to have a cross-bow somewhere!)

Elizabeth perfectly pegged Mountbatten as a bored dude that needed to help out the family "business" instead of stirring up trouble.  

Sweet ending, with both of them grinning.  

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Jealous Philip coming back for that kiss had me swooning just like Elizabeth.   For me, that scene would not have worked with Matt Smith.  I also can't see Claire Foy pulling off that dressing down of Dickie especially with Charles Dance in the role.   

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Mountbatten complained that the defense cuts made it harder to defend the UK against its enemies, particularly east of the Suez.

Aside from Hong Kong, what was left east of the Suez? The Brits originally only cared about the Suez because of India, and India and Pakistan had been independent for 20 years by this time

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I liked that scene with Dickie and Alice, it was well done. It reminded me so much of my dad and his sister after their sister died. They were and still are the two out of four siblings still alive.

I just love Alice.

Watching Elizabeth in the life she would have loved was really good too. She's right. That would have made her really happy and she would have loved it.

Philip and Elizabeth really do have crappy relatives. I loved Elizabeth's dressing down of him.

I'm glad the scene with Elizabeth and Philip ended with a kiss and a minute and not Philip stomping off mad and jealous. 

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12 hours ago, Constantinople said:

Mountbatten complained that the defense cuts made it harder to defend the UK against its enemies, particularly east of the Suez.

Aside from Hong Kong, what was left east of the Suez? The Brits originally only cared about the Suez because of India, and India and Pakistan had been independent for 20 years by this time

As an old man, Mountbatten lived in his glorious memories (I guess the war really wasn't anything like that) and didn't quite realize how much the world had changed. 

Plus, he pondered only if the military coup could succeed but not how it really influenced on economy and, most of all, people's lives. 

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Elizabeth said that if Edward VIII hadn't abdicated, his father and she could have lived a different life. His father perhaps, if he had died as early as the duke of York.

But if Edward VIII had no legitimate children, the succession order would have been the same. Of course, it would have left Elizabeth twenty years to live free from the Queen's duties which probably would have made good to her relatioship with her husband and her eldest son.

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Was this coup really a thing?

Anyway, when he started to list all the coups which were happening, I was kind of expecting that he would end up talking about the loss of life and what happened after them. When he started to talk about the need to be legitime, I was kind of expecting him explaining that as bad as the situation was, it was not bad enough that people would have supported something like this. That he would actually think that Elizabeth would agree to something like this - honestly, that was out of character delusional.

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2 hours ago, Roseanna said:

Elizabeth said that if Edward VIII hadn't abdicated, his father and she could have lived a different life. His father perhaps, if he had died as early as the duke of York.

But if Edward VIII had no legitimate children, the succession order would have been the same. Of course, it would have left Elizabeth twenty years to live free from the Queen's duties which probably would have made good to her relatioship with her husband and her eldest son.

The Duchess of Windsor once quipped that the Duke was not "heir conditioned."  

But I think that if Edward VIII had not abdicated, I don't know that his Nazi sympathies would have resulted in an entirely different outcome for Britain in WWII - I can see the Nazis achieving success with the London Blitz, the overruning Britain and the imprisoning of the entire Royal Family.  

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The Nazis weren't particularly interested in attacking the UK. They had a beef with France over territory and they wanted to expand further to the east, but the tiny island in the sea, they didn't really care about it, like, at all (hence they never bothered to attack Ireland either). Too much effort. Remember, it was the UK who declared war on Germany (after Germany attacked...I think it was Belgium), not the other way around. So if Edward had used the power he had to stall the UK going to war (or had caused an inner-political crisis by attempting to do so, hence distracting everyone enough that no organised effort was organised), Germany could have continued to focus on fighting Russia alone, and in this case, who knows how the war had ended. By the time the US got off their butts because of Pearl Harbour, there might have little been left to do.

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16 hours ago, swanpride said:

Was this coup really a thing?

My understanding is that there was talk of a coup from Cecil King in 1968.  However, Lord Mountbatten was not interested, and the coup never went beyond initial discussions.  Also, Lord Mountbatten retired in 1965, not 1967.  Elizabeth and Porchie went on a short fact finding trip regarding the horses in 1969, not 1968 and it only lasted four days, not a month. 

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18 hours ago, swanpride said:

That he would actually think that Elizabeth would agree to something like this - honestly, that was out of character delusional.

From the way the show portrayed it I guess he thought he can convince Elizabeth due to her love for Uncle Louie plus family connection.

I hoped that she didn't blame Wilson on his interruption of her business trip/vacation when it was all Uncle Louie's fault.  So far the guy who is playing Wilson is killing it as well as others.  I agree Tobias is awesome as Phillip.  

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9 hours ago, tennisgurl said:

Elizabeth really does seem like she would have loved to just hang out with horses all of the time, she was so light and happy throughout her whole horse trip. That last scene between her and Philip was really sweet, and it was great seeing such easy affection between them. Philip still has game! 

No doubt Elizabeth would have liked best to live in the coutry and raise horses, but then she would have to marry Porchie, not Philip. As the navy officers's wife she would have had to follow her husband to whereever post around the world he was commanded. At least in the beginning of S1 she seemed quite happy - probably because she had the first time in a possibility to live like "ordinary" (upper class with career) people.

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3 hours ago, txhorns79 said:

My understanding is that there was talk of a coup from Cecil King in 1968.  However, Lord Mountbatten was not interested, and the coup never went beyond initial discussions.  

20 minutes ago, Peace 47 said:

That’s kind of an unfortunate smear on the real Lord Mountbatten, then, as I thought that the show character’s planning and plotting was certainly treasonous and kind of made him nearly irredeemable.

There are a few different accounts of this incident.  At least one of Lord Mountbatten's biographers wrote that he was drawn into intrigues but the Queen dissuaded him.  The show, somewhat understandably, went with the version of events that gives its lead character more to do.

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One of the things that occurred to me is that Lord Mountbatten was an immigrant: he was without a country until he came to England, which also gave him his name: (changed from Battenburg). 

And like many immigrants, he is very attached to his adopted country...but because of h is privilege and ancestry, he literally thinks of it as "my" country, that is, his country to decide what to do with.

And no doubt, he saw himself as the de facto Prime Minister, if not a replacement for the Queen. (Remember that early in her reign, Victoria's relatives tried to get her out of the way so her Uncle George, the Duke of Cumberland, could be either named Regent or take the Crown.)

Yep, the dull ones are the ones you want on the throne.

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31 minutes ago, kwnyc said:

One of the things that occurred to me is that Lord Mountbatten was an immigrant: he was without a country until he came to England, which also gave him his name: (changed from Battenburg). 

There’s one line of Mountbatten’s that I thought was very off, the line about how England “gave [him] a name”.  The Battenberg/Mountbatten thing was very much a piece of the rampant anti-German xenophobia that destroyed his father’s naval career* and which Lord Louis was understandably very pissed off about.  I don’t think he would have talked about that in such a fond manner.

* For those unfamiliar, his father, Prince Louis of Battenberg, was the First Sea Lord (the professional head of the Royal Navy) at the outbreak of World War I.  The public swiftly turned against having a German prince as a top military officer, and Churchill (then the First Lord of the Admiralty) asked him to resign, which he did.  The same anti-German sentiment later forced all the British royal family and its relations to abandon German names and titles.

Edited by SeanC
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This was the episode where I felt the season had gone a bit wrong. I just wasn't terribly interested in the story. I'm sure there was an expectation that Charles Dance would be able to carry it but it felt like the Queen was peripheral to the story here. I get what they're trying to do, in devoting episodes to particular members of the family, but this one bored me. 

Also, everything they did to establish the relationship between Elizabeth and Porchie last season has been undone by the recasts. I don't have any sense of their connection anymore. 

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1 hour ago, iMonrey said:

Also, everything they did to establish the relationship between Elizabeth and Porchie last season has been undone by the recasts. I don't have any sense of their connection anymore. 

I disagree slightly...the actor did nothing but stare at her and grin, and it felt a bit icky to me.

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I do love me some Charles Dance, but for the most part I found this episode a major snoozefest.

I had no idea Mountbatten ever toyed around with the idea of a coup, but it seemed like it should have been juicier somehow.

Lovely scene between him and Princess Alice though - who has become my breakout favourite character of this season.

Oh, and I loved his cuddly black labs! That scene with the dog staring up attentively at the servant as Mountbatten's car pulled in was kind of adorable.

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5 hours ago, qtpye said:

In the first two seasons I really could not understand why the future queen of England fell for such an entitled whining Howdy Doodey looking moron. It made me respect her less.

Tobias’s Phillip just screams big dick energy in such a way that I can totally understand why a queen (or anyone for that matter) would fall head over heels in love with him. This is even after I saw the actor play the most evil villain imaginable in Outlander.

I always assumed that he was her first crush and she never really considered other options because she was so sheltered.  Then once they were married she had to make it work because divorce wasn't an option.

I loved Charles Dance!  Perfect casting.

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12 minutes ago, Nire said:

I always assumed that he was her first crush and she never really considered other options because she was so sheltered.  Then once they were married she had to make it work because divorce wasn't an option.

I loved Charles Dance!  Perfect casting.

He was handsome too, and he really wasn't whiny until she became queen so much earlier than expected.  Also, they seemed to have great sex, "nothing shrunken about you dear" and "my tall woman needs to get on her knees" and several other moments, including in Africa and when he was just a navy officer, they seemed VERY happy together.

In a way I can understand both sides of the whole King thing.  It's VERY true that if he were a woman marrying a King, he would be crowned Queen.  I think the issue for everyone was, once crowned, good luck keeping any power in Elizabeth's hands, instead of this upstart taking over.  However, it seems like that could have been managed, "King Consort" or something.

Obviously they didn't want to risk him having that title and then usurping his wife, but he's actually correct that it was sexism of a different color.

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2 hours ago, qtpye said:

Did anyone else laugh when they showed how shitty Mountbatten’s farewell cake looked?

It looked like a last-minute purchase from a supermarket bakery dept.

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Between Lord Mountbattens beautiful labs and the queens adorable corgis, I propose next season we have an episode that’s just a normal episode...but told from the perspective of everyone’s pets! 

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Oh, and I loved his cuddly black labs! That scene with the dog staring up attentively at the servant as Mountbatten's car pulled in was kind of adorable.

Not to mention sitting by his side during his bath. My Labs would have tried to get in the tub, as they are insanely delighted with all water.

Charles Dance. How he smoldered in "The Jewel in the Crown."

And I think I recall reading that Porchie was a romance or flirtation for Elizabeth in her youth. She continued making quiet little trips to US horse country over the years.

As I watched Mountbatten's intrigue, I wondered why I had never heard of this incident. I'm disappointed that the show fabricated it, as it implies some pretty serious treasonous acts. Why can't the writers stick to reality, which was fascinating on its own?

Why aren't we seeing more of the royal children? I'd rather them, the endlessly feuding palace mandarins, the queen's devotion to Corgis...anything rather than too much of Alice. I guess the filmmakers are leveraging the actress' chemistry with her colleagues.

Anyone remember the old Betty Crocker photo? Colman looks just like it in her close-ups.

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I've been looking forward to Charles Dance on this show since I heard he was casted and he disappointed.  He was great as always and I really enjoyed this episode.  I agree his best scene was with the actress playing Princess Alice although his scene with Olivia Colman was also excellent.

Also fun to see two actors from Game of Thrones get to interact with each other.  Dance of course and the actor playing Cecil King, Rupert Vansittart.  He played Lord Royce on Thrones.

Loved the body language on Wilson when talking with Mountbatten and Mountbatten's "What?!"

Elizabeth's storyline wasn't as interesting.

Edited by benteen
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“Princess Alice of Nowhere at all.” What a lovely scene.  Put me on the Alice love train please.

This season just keeps getting better.

Edited by jnymph
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14 hours ago, pasdetrois said:

I'm disappointed that the show fabricated it, as it implies some pretty serious treasonous acts. Why can't the writers stick to reality, which was fascinating on its own?

I agree.  They really threw Lord Mountbatten under the bus. Charles Dance was awesome in the role though.   In the scene with Alice and Dickie, the subtitles say Alice calls QEII "our doughty queen", but my ears heard "our dowdy queen."  Those two words have different meanings.  Which do you think is correct?  I assume "dowdy" because it's funnier; but maybe not??

The guy playing Wilson irritates me.  If that's what he was really like, how'd he ever get elected to anything?  He has zero charisma.

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The best things about this episode were Dickie's dog happily wagging its tail when he returned home and the genuine smile on Elizabeth's face while she was on her trip.

I think everyone has at least one moment in their lives when they wonder how different their lives might have been if they had done one thing differently, but that's often a lot of conjecture. In Elizabeth's case it's a lot more realistic to think about how much happier she would be if she had been able to do this very specific thing that she loved instead of doing something that was her obligation.

On 11/17/2019 at 7:36 PM, Ohiopirate02 said:

Jealous Philip coming back for that kiss had me swooning just like Elizabeth.  

On 11/20/2019 at 1:55 PM, qtpye said:

Tobias’s Phillip just screams big dick energy in such a way that I can totally understand why a queen (or anyone for that matter) would fall head over heels in love with him.

I had the opposite reaction. It's so predictable and gross that his way of dealing with his petty jealousy was to get territorial and kiss her (especially considering all the rumors that he cheated on her throughout their marriage). If you're only interested in your wife when you think someone else is interested in her then you're just treating her like an object you own and trying to reclaim your territory. Blech.

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On 11/22/2019 at 11:02 AM, pasdetrois said:

As I watched Mountbatten's intrigue, I wondered why I had never heard of this incident. I'm disappointed that the show fabricated it, as it implies some pretty serious treasonous acts. Why can't the writers stick to reality, which was fascinating on its own?

It was not a fabrication, plots against Wilson were very real, even after all the years many think that his resignation was because he was pressured (i dont believe that, in fact privately he told some people that he was going to resing with dignity). I believe that in the 70s the army made some big military excersices in the airport without telling Wilson of the home scretary about it, they basically learned about it the press.

Because is still a sensitive thing, in fact even Wiilson in the series first warns privately to the queen about it, if he wanted to go nuclear about it he could have go the house of commons and then the whole royal family would have been in trouble. In fact, a retired spy, admited how some in the secret services continued to plot against Wilson in the 70s, Peter Wright in his book spycatcher. The sad thing is that those people were so worried about searching comunists under the bed that they missed the ones over it. According to some people most of those men were retired colonial officers, with little intelligence and competence, basically during the 90s a Home Secretary undertook a major cleaning of the mi5. 

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On 11/19/2019 at 9:35 AM, SeanC said:

The same anti-German sentiment later forced all the British royal family and its relations to abandon German names and titles.

That's why we have the House of Windsor. The royal family was known as the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, but due to that anti-German sentiment, George V (QE2's grandfather) decided to change it and asked his courtiers to research and determine the most hyper-English name. They came back with Windsor, so the House of Windsor it was.

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On 11/19/2019 at 6:35 PM, SeanC said:

There’s one line of Mountbatten’s that I thought was very off, the line about how England “gave [him] a name”.  The Battenberg/Mountbatten thing was very much a piece of the rampant anti-German xenophobia that destroyed his father’s naval career* and which Lord Louis was understandably very pissed off about.  I don’t think he would have talked about that in such a fond manner.

* For those unfamiliar, his father, Prince Louis of Battenberg, was the First Sea Lord (the professional head of the Royal Navy) at the outbreak of World War I.  The public swiftly turned against having a German prince as a top military officer, and Churchill (then the First Lord of the Admiralty) asked him to resign, which he did.  The same anti-German sentiment later forced all the British royal family and its relations to abandon German names and titles.

Before Nationalism, aristocrats could serve one ruler and then another, and nobody thought them disloyal. After they had fought a battle against each other, they could amiably eat a dinner. 

A typical case is James Keith. When he fell in Hochkirch fighting for Prussia, the son of his old comrade from the Russian army wept:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Francis_Edward_Keith

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On 11/17/2019 at 10:36 PM, Ohiopirate02 said:

Jealous Philip coming back for that kiss had me swooning just like Elizabeth.   For me, that scene would not have worked with Matt Smith.  I also can't see Claire Foy pulling off that dressing down of Dickie especially with Charles Dance in the role.   

Personally, I found Foy tearing into Uncle David just as fierce as what Colman did to Uncle Dickie. Foy was pretty great at dressing down Churchill, too.

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On 11/18/2019 at 4:50 AM, andromeda331 said:

I liked that scene with Dickie and Alice, it was well done. It reminded me so much of my dad and his sister after their sister died. They were and still are the two out of four siblings still alive.

That was so nice. It reminded me how bizarre being royal is, even from a house that no longer exists. It really is a singular kind of life.

On 11/20/2019 at 1:39 AM, Cheezwiz said:

Oh, and I loved his cuddly black labs!

I was surprised the dog wasn't more excited. Every dog my family had, regardless of breed, went nuts when we came home. Do English Labs also have a stiff upper lip? Hee.

On 11/20/2019 at 10:16 PM, Nire said:

I always assumed that he was her first crush and she never really considered other options because she was so sheltered.  Then once they were married she had to make it work because divorce wasn't an option.

It amuses and annoys me in equal measure that Philip gets jealous of Porchey. If anyone were going to cheat during the rough patches of Elizabeth and Philip's marriage—rough patches something all relationships go through—it wouldn't be Elizabeth. I don't think she had it in her.

Philip, on the other hand? Has an eye for the ladies. Always did. He certainly had close friendships with various women, no that means there were affairs.

On 11/20/2019 at 10:32 PM, Umbelina said:

Obviously they didn't want to risk him having that title and then usurping his wife, but he's actually correct that it was sexism of a different color.

There's so much rampant sexist in royalty the way it is (even though male primogeniture is fading out, thank goodness), I have a hard time mustering up too much sympathy for the prince consorts where their title is concerned. They know the deal. I don't doubt the adjustment can be difficult, but that's what they signed up for. Why should women be the only ones to subsume their personalities, talents, and ambitions?

On 11/22/2019 at 9:02 AM, pasdetrois said:

Why aren't we seeing more of the royal children?

Because they aren't doing too much yet. Charles's investiture was the first big step in his heir to the throne status starting in earnest.

On 11/24/2019 at 11:17 AM, Sir RaiderDuck OMS said:

The royal family was known as the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, but due to that anti-German sentiment, George V (QE2's grandfather) decided to change it and asked his courtiers to research and determine the most hyper-English name. They came back with Windsor, so the House of Windsor it was.

When the Kaiser heard about this, he vowed to see a performance of The Merry Wives of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha as soon as possible. Hee. Royal pettiness can be very amusing.

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9 minutes ago, dubbel zout said:

It amuses and annoys me in equal measure that Philip gets jealous of Porchey. If anyone were going to cheat during the rough patches of Elizabeth and Philip's marriage—rough patches something all relationships go through—it wouldn't be Elizabeth. I don't think she had it in her.

Philip, on the other hand? Has an eye for the ladies. Always did. He certainly had close friendships with various women, no that means there were affairs.

There's so much rampant sexist in royalty the way it is (even though male primogeniture is fading out, thank goodness), I have a hard time mustering up too much sympathy for the prince consorts where their title is concerned. They know the deal. I don't doubt the adjustment can be difficult, but that's what they signed up for. Why should women be the only ones to subsume their personalities, talents, and ambitions?

I have zero sympathy too. For the same reason. They know exactly what their getting into. They knew all along they were marrying the heir to throne. Women have been having to do that for centuries. But when its the man's turn? They whine and complain. How unfair it is. Boohoo. I don't feel sorry at all. You didn't want that to happen? Then don't marry the heir to throne. Its that simple. There is a lot of sexist in it.  

Look at his reaction when he finds out his wife spent a month traveling with another man. Even though he's done the same thing. He's traveled, goes to parties, the stupid lunch club where there are women at. He had that picture of the ballerina in his bag for who knows how long. He agreed to that Australia interview because the woman was hot. But when its Elizabeth's turn? He's all jealous. He's all upset. He keeps insulting the man she spent time with. So its okay for him to hang out with other women and possibly cheat on his wife. But so not his wife. Its so obvious Elizabeth wouldn't cheat on him. But it doesn't matter. Its okay for him but not her. He almost storms of ticked but then comes over to give her that kiss. Marking your territory Philip? 

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3 hours ago, andromeda331 said:

I have zero sympathy too. For the same reason. They know exactly what their getting into. They knew all along they were marrying the heir to throne. Women have been having to do that for centuries. But when its the man's turn? They whine and complain. How unfair it is. Boohoo. I don't feel sorry at all. You didn't want that to happen? Then don't marry the heir to throne. Its that simple. There is a lot of sexist in it.  

Yes, but the difference is?  WOMEN are crowned QUEEN if they marry or are married to a King.

As I said before, I understand Philip thinking that unfair.  It's not an endorsement of Philip, and I'm not even saying he should have been crowned King.  I do however?  Get it.

😉  Oh yeah, Philip was definitely marking his territory with that kiss, and double checking as well probably.

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saoirse

A reminder that discussion/mention of future events is not allowed in episode topics. This includes mentioning individuals who have not yet appeared, or events that occur in future decades. Posts will be removed; repeated violations may incur further sanctions.

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