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S04.E04: Favourites

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On 11/16/2020 at 2:36 PM, JudyObscure said:

Equally there's no excuse for Diana doing that childish not speaking thing. How spoiled and lazy can you be to simply lose interest in decorating your nice new mansion with your unlimited funds, and, honestly, when your mother-in-law comes to visit for the first time, get out of bed, throw on a maternity dress, and go down for lunch, whether you're feeling fabulous  or not. 

Pretty sure Diana dealt with depression. That on top of a loveless marriage would be extremely tough.

On 11/17/2020 at 2:36 PM, laurakaye said:

Olivia Colman NAILED the scene where she was telling Philip that she could never bathe Charles when he was a baby because she didn't know how to hold him.  That was just heartbreaking and her tears were right on the verge of falling, but nonetheless they did not.  That's some serious skill.

I thought she was talking about Andrew. She said she made a point to be a more hands on mom and wanted to bathe her children but in the end she sat back because she didn’t know what to do. 

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Honestly, the whole "bathing time" thing was completely stupid. She didn't know what to do? Well, there is someone there who can show you what to do. Every mother bathes her baby for the first time eventually, it's not rocket science.

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13 minutes ago, swanpride said:

Honestly, the whole "bathing time" thing was completely stupid. She didn't know what to do? Well, there is someone there who can show you what to do. Every mother bathes her baby for the first time eventually, it's not rocket science.

Yes, but it's a rather new (i.e. 20th century) idea that it's a mother who takes care of her babies. Aristocratic women had "better" things to do (from their own and their husband's POV), and poor women had to work and babies were taken care of those who were too old or too young to work. 

That said, it's clear that Elizabeth has mental difficulties to touch even the family members. But also JFK told her wife that Rose had been a cold mother who never touched him, unless she punished him. 

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On 11/17/2020 at 4:47 AM, Cheezwiz said:

The actors they hired to play Edward and Andrew were not nearly as handsome as their real-life counterparts in that era

It's called "protecting the star." If they had cast really handsome guys for Edward and Andrew, that would upstage the actor playing Charles. People last year seemed to suggest that Camila's husband wasn't as handsome as his real-life counterpart; same principle.

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9 hours ago, Neurochick said:

Yes, but you got married, really married, you probably knew your husband, you didn't have to go to "Princess School".  Diana wasn't a wife; she was hired to do a job, she was a broodmare.  The problem was that she didn't know it.  She thought she and Charles would be a proper man and wife and that wasn't the case.

Everything you do has a price.

Yes, and the price Diana was asked to pay for marrying the most eligible bachelor in the world, becoming one of the richest women in the world with fabulous gowns, houses and jewels, and someday being the queen, was "princess school" and having the occasional lunch with the Queen.  

She certainly wasn't the first woman to get married and soon learn that her husband wasn't  as devoted as she thought and marriage wasn't all it was cracked up to be.  When I got married it was at the height of the Vietnam war and quite a few women found out they were being used to provide their husband with a "father"  draft deferment.  There are all sort of broodmares.

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I really enjoyed this episode.

Finally, we got some real quality time with Andrew (who I already knew was the Queen's favorite) and Edward.

* Loved the callback to Gordonstoun school and its boorish bullying.  By all accounts, Andrew and Edward did much better there than Charles did.
* Loved Andrew's landing on the lawn; waking up Margaret who is still in bed at what is certainly no longer morning.
* I jawdropped the whole "Movie about a much of older predators in a fancy house deflowering a teenaged girl".  Did they really go there?  Mr. Wordsworth was too busy googling the name of the movie and the actress to pick up on the reference until I pointed it out to him later.  
* The scene with Princess Anne was done really well, especially her remarks about how she does real charity work, but the press only cares about her when it comes to marriage gossip while they photograph Diana at the drop of a hat.
* The scene with Charles was cringeworthy.  Showing Mummy the gardens and how they will reflect him (I was thinking the whole time..."Not us?  Just you?").  That lunch chat was perfect.  The Queen showing that she was no fool, knowing exactly why he moved out to Highgrove and not shy about pointing that out.  Her line about how Charles could possibly need cheering up when he's decorating this lovely house and gardens surrounded by sycophants working to celebrate his soul was delicious.  And, too, her comment about perhaps supporting a struggling pregnant wife.
* The Thatcher scenes were a nice juxtaposition to show that it's not just royalty that has problems relating to offspring realistically.  Solidly middle-class Margaret indulges her rascal of a son while her daughter chaffs under her mother's clear disappointment in her abilities.  
* The Falklands issue was take or leave for me.  I remember the incident, but it seems rather inconsequential now.  I get that they were trying to muddle Thatcher's concern for her son by having her overreact to this problem.
* Kudos to showing a little bit of Jared Harris in the old photos of the children.

 

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4 hours ago, JudyObscure said:

Yes, and the price Diana was asked to pay for marrying the most eligible bachelor in the world, becoming one of the richest women in the world with fabulous gowns, houses and jewels, and someday being the queen, was "princess school" and having the occasional lunch with the Queen.  

I don't think Diana would have minded if she knew beforehand that she was supposed to do a job.  

For me, there isn't enough money in the world, that I would have done that at her age.   Gowns, jewels, houses, can't take any of those things with you.

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Rewatched yesterday and noticed another one of those weird little things.

When  Elizabeth and Anne were out on the grounds having their conversation, Anne got up to leave and said, "Can you find your own way back?"  (Funny in and of itself because we could ALL see the house a few hundred yards away.)

So Anne grabbed her thermos, hopped on her horse and rode off.  Elizabeth stood up, walked over to her horse, mounted and rode towards the house.

So who brought the darned picnic blanket back to the house?  Neither one of them did.  LOL.

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When Elizabeth said she didn't know how to hold her son at bath time, I took it to mean that she just didn't have it in her to hold her child and be affectionate.

As in, the concept was alien to her, and someone showing her the correct position wouldn't have changed that.

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I'd love to hear a psychologist's interpretation as to why Elizabeth struggled to bond with her children.

I understand she was raised in the old-school "nannies do everything" era, but she appeared to have a good relationship with her own parents and wasn't forced into a miserable arranged marriage, so what gives? 

 

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1 hour ago, BitterApple said:

I'd love to hear a psychologist's interpretation as to why Elizabeth struggled to bond with her children.

I understand she was raised in the old-school "nannies do everything" era, but she appeared to have a good relationship with her own parents and wasn't forced into a miserable arranged marriage, so what gives? 

 

Just because Elizabeth had a good relationship with her parents doesn't mean her parents were hands on.  She was probably turned over to nannies as well.

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17 hours ago, Wordsworth said:

* I jawdropped the whole "Movie about a much of older predators in a fancy house deflowering a teenaged girl".  Did they really go there?  

I had the same reaction. I wonder how the Queen feels about her "favorite" these days.

I noticed that when Charles was showing the Queen the grounds at Highgrove and telling her about his garden plans, it was almost verbatim what Camilla had said to Diana in the last episode - a wild garden, a walled garden, and a kitchen garden.

I thought Anne sounded uncharacteristically whiny. It's not Diana's fault that the media treated Anne less favorably. Diana was married to the future monarch, so of course she was considered to be in a different league. And, IIRC, it was Anne's choice to live a more private life and not give her children royal titles, so she can't have it both ways.

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5 hours ago, chocolatine said:

I thought Anne sounded uncharacteristically whiny. It's not Diana's fault that the media treated Anne less favorably. Diana was married to the future monarch, so of course she was considered to be in a different league. And, IIRC, it was Anne's choice to live a more private life and not give her children royal titles, so she can't have it both ways.

Actually Anne didn't exactly blame on Diana but the press for been interested only on Diana's new dresses (good pictures!) and not giving credit *at all* to Anne's hard work for charity, that is, favoring *only* surface for substance.  That is not wanting to "have both ways", that's a normal person need for esteem.

Only, the tabloids's are interested of surface and they need contradictions (good Diana vs. bad Charles/Anne/Fergie).    

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I think part of the reason Elizabeth’s children are so messed up is that Phillip was in charge of the home, to balm his manly vanity. I am queen but you are actually king of the castle. The queen adores her husband and always will but his traumatic childhood combined with his big dick personality made him a poor choice for a father and consort. He did not think any of the boys were “manly” enough to be his sons and envies their stable childhoods compared to his.

He only seems to like Anne who is his clone but luckily has inherited her mother’s work ethic.

Compare him to Thatcher’s husband.

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28 minutes ago, qtpye said:

made him a poor choice for a father and consort.

I think at this point in time (in the show) Philip is actually a pretty decent consort. He finally seems to accept his place in the scheme of things and has stopped whining about how he can't do anything. It helps a lot that the show doesn't focus anymore on how frustrated he is.

He's still a terrible father, though I like that he's aware enough to know he and the queen each has a favorite child. It's not great for the kids, but at least he's honest about it.

The thing is, I don't think there's anyway to know if someone will be a good parent or not. People can surprise you for good and for bad. And being the parent of the heir to the throne is a very rare and peculiar situation to be in. There aren't too many people you can go to for advice.

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9 hours ago, Roseanna said:

Actually Anne didn't exactly blame on Diana but the press for been interested only on Diana's new dresses (good pictures!) and not giving credit *at all* to Anne's hard work for charity, that is, favoring *only* surface for substance.  That is not wanting to "have both ways", that's a normal person need for esteem.

Only, the tabloids's are interested of surface and they need contradictions (good Diana vs. bad Charles/Anne/Fergie).    

But it was naive of her to expect any kind of validation from the tabloids. I don't think real-life Anne would have been this naive.

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On 11/19/2020 at 7:01 AM, Avaleigh said:

I love this show so much but every season I feel like there are missed opportunities like this. 

I think it was a strange choice to not have made a little more of a story about Andrew and the Falklands War. What made the showrunners think this wouldn't be interesting?

 

On 11/19/2020 at 7:18 AM, Normades said:

I also wonder if the fact that Charles is literally waiting to take over for her causes issues in their relationship.  It can't be healthy to think "this kid is waiting for me to die so that he can be king."

There is a long and inglorious history of conflict and even animosity between Kings (monarchs) and their heirs.  I'm beginning to think it's built into the system!

17 hours ago, chocolatine said:

I thought Anne sounded uncharacteristically whiny. It's not Diana's fault that the media treated Anne less favorably. Diana was married to the future monarch, so of course she was considered to be in a different league. And, IIRC, it was Anne's choice to live a more private life and not give her children royal titles, so she can't have it both ways.

Anne has never had much time for the press but during this time it seems they were happily getting back at her via the still-used tradition of pitting one group member against another.  I know I would find it hard to bear if I was publicly and negatively compared to someone  else. Especially if it continued over a long period of time. I'd think it wears you out (not that it has happened to me). Her mom wasn't likely going to let the press know how much they had managed to upset her and she appeared to want to know what Anne felt.  I thought this scene humanized Anne.  Feeling petty emotions is human (they pass after all). Acting them out is another thing. 

 

Regarding the elusive Prince Edward. I recognized the actor but couldn't place him. Look him up on IMDB and realized I'd seen him  a while ago in The Red Queen as the also-forgotten Prince Arthur, know mostly as the dead brother of Henry VIII. Subtle casting?

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7 hours ago, dubbel zout said:

I think at this point in time (in the show) Philip is actually a pretty decent consort. He finally seems to accept his place in the scheme of things and has stopped whining about how he can't do anything. It helps a lot that the show doesn't focus anymore on how frustrated he is.

He's still a terrible father, though I like that he's aware enough to know he and the queen each has a favorite child. It's not great for the kids, but at least he's honest about it.

The thing is, I don't think there's anyway to know if someone will be a good parent or not. People can surprise you for good and for bad. And being the parent of the heir to the throne is a very rare and peculiar situation to be in. There aren't too many people you can go to for advice.

I agree with you about the consort part. I think Phillip is sharper than the queen and could have been more value to her. Unfortunately, he wasted away many of his earlier years being something in between a toddler and a frat boy. He really could have been the Albert to her Victoria.

If I saw Phillip with just Ann, I would think he is a good father. Ann is like his clone in female form and they have a great rapport.

Edited by qtpye
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On 11/20/2020 at 6:21 PM, BitterApple said:

I'd love to hear a psychologist's interpretation as to why Elizabeth struggled to bond with her children.

I understand she was raised in the old-school "nannies do everything" era, but she appeared to have a good relationship with her own parents and wasn't forced into a miserable arranged marriage, so what gives? 

 

Just a guess: Elizabeth was given so much responsibility at such a young age. I think her life was/is laser focused on her duties to her country. It's what makes her such a beloved monarch. But the same qualities probably made her an absent parent in those critical early years of her four children. And she's preferred to take a hands-off approach to their life. 

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2 minutes ago, Growsonwalls said:

Just a guess: Elizabeth was given so much responsibility at such a young age. I think her life was/is laser focused on her duties to her country. It's what makes her such a beloved monarch. But the same qualities probably made her an absent parent in those critical early years of her four children. And she's preferred to take a hands-off approach to their life. 

She had the first two while a navy wife on Malta.  You'd think she could have managed to bathe her own kids every once in a while.  Or, you know, taken them into the sea for the first time, helped them look for seashells, read them a bedtime story.  SOMETHING.

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2 minutes ago, Umbelina said:

She had the first two while a navy wife on Malta.  You'd think she could have managed to bathe her own kids every once in a while.  Or, you know, taken them into the sea for the first time, helped them look for seashells, read them a bedtime story.  SOMETHING.

I think being a hands-on parent wasn't considered very posh in her circles. She was brought up with nannies. The queen mum all her life would rather have a tumbler of whisky and a cigar rather than spend much time with her kids. 

Albert was only a more hands-on parent because Victoria was SUCH a crappy mother. Like so bad Albert lamented that she seemed to actively hate her own kids. Also Albert was pretty sickly and thus more of a homebody than the usual male royal. 

The other thought I've always had was if Elizabeth was upset that her kids are ... uh, well, they're kind of homely. When young Elizabeth and Philip were a striking looking couple. It's unfortunate but many parents who are good looking are upset when their kids are not beauties. Eleanor Roosevelt talked of this -- how her glamourous mother ridiculed her homeliness and called her "granny."

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9 minutes ago, Growsonwalls said:

I think being a hands-on parent wasn't considered very posh in her circles. She was brought up with nannies. The queen mum all her life would rather have a tumbler of whisky and a cigar rather than spend much time with her kids. 

Albert was only a more hands-on parent because Victoria was SUCH a crappy mother. Like so bad Albert lamented that she seemed to actively hate her own kids. Also Albert was pretty sickly and thus more of a homebody than the usual male royal. 

The other thought I've always had was if Elizabeth was upset that her kids are ... uh, well, they're kind of homely. When young Elizabeth and Philip were a striking looking couple. It's unfortunate but many parents who are good looking are upset when their kids are not beauties. Eleanor Roosevelt talked of this -- how her glamourous mother ridiculed her homeliness and called her "granny."

Yes, but again, she was a navy wife, and I don't even think Philip was the ranking officer there.  Her friends were other navy wives, officers wives, but still...it's MALTA, not Windsor Castle.

Had to google.  Yes, she still had a palace there.  https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-48602842#:~:text=The villa%2C located on the,Malta as a naval officer.

Edited by Umbelina

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5 minutes ago, Umbelina said:

She had the first two while a navy wife on Malta.  You'd think she could have managed to bathe her own kids every once in a while.  Or, you know, taken them into the sea for the first time, helped them look for seashells, read them a bedtime story.  SOMETHING.

Yeah. That's the thing. Charles was born in '48 and Anne in "50. Elizabeth became Queen in '52.  Charles would have been 4 and Anne 2. Charles may have had memories from then, but it's unlikely Anne would - whether they happened or not. Anne and Charles turned out quite differently in regards to their sense of self. Perhaps it really was the difference in expectations placed on them 

I find it interesting that fathers were given leeway to claim lack of experience in handling babies and not pushed to give it a try,  but not mothers. It's not like she'd have learned watching her mother - the way I did. Her mother relied on nannies too. Yet she's the one feeling guilty.

The gendered expectations have changed for most of us, thankfully.

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1 minute ago, Anothermi said:

Yeah. That's the thing. Charles was born in '48 and Anne in "50. Elizabeth became Queen in '52.  Charles would have been 4 and Anne 2. Charles may have had memories from then, but it's unlikely Anne would - whether they happened or not. Anne and Charles turned out quite differently in regards to their sense of self. Perhaps it really was the difference in expectations placed on them 

I find it interesting that fathers were given leeway to claim lack of experience in handling babies and not pushed to give it a try,  but not mothers. It's not like she'd have learned watching her mother - the way I did. Her mother relied on nannies too. Yet she's the one feeling guilty.

The gendered expectations have changed for most of us, thankfully.

Then again, we often saw Philip playing with both Anne and with Charles, teaching them how to fish, how to throw a ball, tossing Anne in the air, etc.  He seemed pretty hands on for a rich dude who didn't do much of anything in his life except marry well, enjoy the riches, and cheat on his wife.  https://www.townandcountrymag.com/society/tradition/a28004050/queen-elizabeth-malta-villa-for-sale/

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28 minutes ago, Umbelina said:

Then again, we often saw Philip playing with both Anne and with Charles, teaching them how to fish, how to throw a ball, tossing Anne in the air, etc.  He seemed pretty hands on for a rich dude who didn't do much of anything in his life except marry well, enjoy the riches, and cheat on his wife.  https://www.townandcountrymag.com/society/tradition/a28004050/queen-elizabeth-malta-villa-for-sale/

True, and that would have been at Buckingham Palace. When Claire Foy was Elizabeth I think we even saw her looking out the window at those fun times. She was working. Those would also be the times when Charles didn't live up to his father's expectations and Anne would have won his heart by exceeding the expectations. 

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10 hours ago, Umbelina said:

Yes, but again, she was a navy wife, and I don't even think Philip was the ranking officer there.  Her friends were other navy wives, officers wives, but still...it's MALTA, not Windsor Castle.

Had to google.  Yes, she still had a palace there.  https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-48602842#:~:text=The villa%2C located on the,Malta as a naval officer.

According to Wikipedia:

"At various times between 1949 and 1951, the Duke of Edinburgh was stationed in the British Crown Colony of Malta as a serving Royal Navy officer. He and Elizabeth lived intermittently in Malta for several months at a time in the hamlet of Gwardamanġa, at Villa Guardamangia, the rented home of Philip's uncle, Lord Mountbatten. The children remained in Britain."

Kind of hard for a mother to bathe kids that are 1,300 miles away.

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17 hours ago, chocolatine said:

But it was naive of her to expect any kind of validation from the tabloids. I don't think real-life Anne would have been this naive.

I'm not sure I think she was naive - even a person who is a realist can be hurt by the slings and arrows in the media (and within the family). Even they like to be appreciated and recognized for their value and contributions. It's human.

It's often those who are prickliest on the outside who get hurt more easily than most.

 

Edited by Clanstarling · Reason: Had another thought.
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On 11/16/2020 at 10:34 PM, Arynm said:

I have to say, as a parent to 2 children one of each, that I have my favorites. One is my favorite based on brains and sheer will and the other is my favorite based on likability and common sense. They each have their good and bad points and my favorite changes all the time. Always I love them, but sometimes they make me crazy and I think "the other would handle this better."

Mom?

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On 11/21/2020 at 9:59 PM, Growsonwalls said:

Just a guess: Elizabeth was given so much responsibility at such a young age. I think her life was/is laser focused on her duties to her country. It's what makes her such a beloved monarch. But the same qualities probably made her an absent parent in those critical early years of her four children.

I also think it's important to remember that when Elizabeth was born she was NOT the heir to the throne.  She lived through the trauma of the abdication and was old enough to have some sense of what a crisis that was AND to recognize what a blow it was to the status of the monarchy.  I mean, what is the "divine right of kings" if a playboy-prince/not-yet-crowned-king can just walk away from the gig because he has the hots for an American divorcee?  

Remember too that her father -- a shy man with a speech defect -- was likely hastened into an early grave due to his having to assume a role for which he was ill-suited.  (The movie "The King's Speech" depicts his smoking -- which led to his fatal lung cancer -- as having begun as a treatment for his stammer and it likely became a tonic for his nerves as well.  In an earlier episode of this show we saw him taking a quick few puffs before going out on the balcony to wave at the crowd.)  King George VI repaired some of the damage caused by the abdication when chose to stay in London during the Blitz and weather the storm with his people.  Some questioned his decision, especially since the Queen and the Princesses stayed as well but his Queen famously said: "The children won't go without me. I won't leave without the King. And the King will never leave." (I'm not sure that quote is her exact words.)  She also said -- after Buckingham Palace was bombed -- something to the effect that "Now I can look the East End in the face" (the East End of London having suffered tremendously during the Blitz.)

I think it's fair to assume that all that trauma at an early age is one of things that contributed to Queen's remoteness to her children, as depicted in this episode.  After all Elizabeth went through with the abdication, World War II, and losing her father/having to assume the throne MUCH sooner than expected, I can well imagine her having a complete lack of patience for Diana's bulimia or Charles' disappointment with his unhappy marriage or ANY complaints aired by her children in this episode.

Edited by WatchrTina
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47 minutes ago, WatchrTina said:

I also think it's important to remember that when Elizabeth was born she was NOT the heir to the throne.  She lived through the trauma of the abdication and was old enough to have some sense of what a crisis that was AND to recognize what a blow it was to the status of the monarchy.  I mean, what is the "divine right of kings" if a playboy-prince/not-yet-crowned-king can just walk away from the gig because he has the hots for an American divorcee?  

Remember too that her Father -- a shy man with a speech defect -- was likely hastened into an early grave due to his having to assume a role for which he was ill-suited.  (The movie "The King's Speech" depicts his smoking -- which led to his fatal lung cancer-- as having begun as a treatment for his stammer and it likely became a tonic for his nerves as well.  In an earlier episode of this show we saw him taking a quick few puffs before going out on the balcony to wave at the crowd.)  King George VI repaired some of the damage caused by the abdication when chose to stay in London during the Blitz and weather the storm with his people.  Some questioned his decision, especially since the Queen and the Princesses stayed as well but his Queen famously said: "The children won't go without me. I won't leave without the King. And the King will never leave." (I'm not sure that quote is her exact words.)  She also said -- after Buckingham Palace was bombed -- something to the effect that "Now I can look the East End in the face" (the East End of London having suffered tremendously during the Blitz.)

I think it's fair to assume that all that trauma at an early age is one of things that contributed to Queen's remoteness to her children, as depicted in this episode.  After all Elizabeth went through with the abdication, World War II, and losing her father/having to assume the throne MUCH sooner than expected, I can well imagine her having a complete lack of patience for Diana's bulimia or Charles' disappointment with his unhappy marriage or ANY complaints aired by her children in this episode.

Elizabeth was 3rd in line to the throne at birth.  Her grandfather famously said near the end of his life that he hoped David didnt do anything to stop Bertie and Lilibet from taking the throne.   David never wanted to be king, he had no desire to marry an appropriate girl to sire heirs, he may have also been sterile.   While the abdication did speed up the timeline,  Elizabeth was always going to be Queen.

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45 minutes ago, Ohiopirate02 said:

Elizabeth was 3rd in line to the throne at birth.  Her grandfather famously said near the end of his life that he hoped David didnt do anything to stop Bertie and Lilibet from taking the throne.   David never wanted to be king, he had no desire to marry an appropriate girl to sire heirs, he may have also been sterile.   While the abdication did speed up the timeline,  Elizabeth was always going to be Queen.

Still David lived 20 years into her reign so I think it's fair to say that Elizabeth didn't expect to become Queen in her mid twenties and one would imagine that has a profound impact in particular on her bar for "difficulties". With the old school uninformed view (or lack there of) of  mental health and her life experiences I don't find it hard to see how the Queen may have lacked understanding of and empathy for Diana's mental health challenges. 

Edited by bluphoenix451
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38 minutes ago, bluphoenix451 said:

Still David lived 20 years into her reign so I think it's fair to say that Elizabeth didn't expect to become Queen in her mid twenties and one would imagine that has a profound impact in particular on her bar for "difficulties". With the old school uninformed view (or lack there of) of  mental health and her life experiences I don't find it hard to see how the Queen may have lacked understanding of and empathy for Diana's mental health challenges. 

Like I said, the abdication moved up the timeline, then WWII happened,  and that took a toll on Elizabeth's father.  His "smoking cure " for his stutter began in the 1920s because he was the Duke of York and even then David showed no signs of settling down.  David always wanted the perks of being a royal without all of the responsibility.   

The show chooses to portray Elizabeth as cold and uncaring,  when that may not be the case.  Woman of her social status were not hands-on mothers.  They depended upon nannies to do the grunt work.  I do believe she loves her children in her own way.  

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I also think that Elizabeth II is a good politician. Her role is on the surface non-political but she's always had a good pulse of what political notes to strike. 

Pols often view everyone through the lens of how this affects them politically. I think Liz figured out early that her four kids had good attributes but weren't political prizes. They were homely, their personal lives were messy, they didn't have her iron discipline. 

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31 minutes ago, Ohiopirate02 said:

Like I said, the abdication moved up the timeline, then WWII happened,  and that took a toll on Elizabeth's father.  His "smoking cure " for his stutter began in the 1920s because he was the Duke of York and even then David showed no signs of settling down.  David always wanted the perks of being a royal without all of the responsibility.   

The show chooses to portray Elizabeth as cold and uncaring,  when that may not be the case.  Woman of her social status were not hands-on mothers.  They depended upon nannies to do the grunt work.  I do believe she loves her children in her own way.  

I think we are saying the same thing. I think she cares for her children (and probably their spouses), but her approach/life view is informed by her life experiences. 

 

Edited to add: It's also possible that the Queen is both cold and still loves her family very much. She reminds me of my grandmother who I would describe in the same way. Based on her own experiences as well as her upbringing she is fairly cold as Grandmothers go and also simply could not under why my mother couldn't just rid herself from depression by just getting over it. Sometimes there is a gap between how we feel vs how we express those feelings. 

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Andrew and Edward were both total smokeshows as young men.  Seriously.

Elizabeth was the daughter of a second son of a second son. There was no inevitability in her becoming queen.  Her mother famously vehemently resented David's abdication, because she and the spare were living happy royal-adjacent lives. Close enough to get the jewelry, far enough away not to have to give speeches.  I suspect Elizabeth looked at her parents' devotion and duty to Great Britain despite haaaaaating the job, and this influenced her greatly as she was growing up. Her sense of duty always took precedence over everything else, including her children. I can understand both from a logistics perspective and emotionally that her being distant from her children was probably self-protective. Unlike how she was raised, Charles and Anne knew where they were in the pecking order from birth. She also viewed Charles and Anne as belonging to GB, which is why she wanted two more to be "hers" and not belong to the nation.

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4 hours ago, WatchrTina said:

stay in London during the Blitz and weather the storm with his people.  Some questioned his decision, especially since the Queen and the Princesses stayed as well but his Queen famously said: "The children won't go without me. I won't leave without the King. And the King will never leave." (I'm not sure that quote is her exact words.)  She also said -- after Buckingham Palace was bombed -- something to the effect that "Now I can look the East End in the face" (the East End of London having suffered tremendously during the Blitz.)

Another example of a Queen doing her duty, while keeping her children close.  Elizabeth wasn't raised to have her children be in another county while she was in Malta.  Surely she could have managed to have nannies there, the kids were babies.

That said, it makes me wonder about the scenes on the show, showing the children in Malta with their parents?

4 hours ago, WatchrTina said:

I think it's fair to assume that all that trauma at an early age is one of things that contributed to Queen's remoteness to her children, as depicted in this episode.  After all Elizabeth went through with the abdication, World War II, and losing her father/having to assume the throne MUCH sooner than expected, I can well imagine her having a complete lack of patience for Diana's bulimia or Charles' disappointment with his unhappy marriage or ANY complaints aired by her children in this episode.

The only time we have seen The Queen express any affection or concern for her children on this show, that I can remember offhand, are:

1.  Trying to get Charles in Eton, a close by school that the experts agreed was best for him.  She did cave on that to save her marriage though.

2.  Her affection and indulgence for the handsome one, Andrew, during the "which is your favorite" episode.  She doesn't appear to have been that hands on with him either.  I think she likes that he makes her laugh.

 

9 hours ago, AZChristian said:

According to Wikipedia:

"At various times between 1949 and 1951, the Duke of Edinburgh was stationed in the British Crown Colony of Malta as a serving Royal Navy officer. He and Elizabeth lived intermittently in Malta for several months at a time in the hamlet of Gwardamanġa, at Villa Guardamangia, the rented home of Philip's uncle, Lord Mountbatten. The children remained in Britain."

Kind of hard for a mother to bathe kids that are 1,300 miles away.

Again though, she made that choice.  I don't think she cared for being a mother really, it seems like she liked the idea of kids, more than kids.  Even the upper class with nannies at least made it a point to spend SOME time with their children.

Also I can't help but think back to Aberfan.  Her biggest concern was her own inability to cry, not the dead, crushed children, not the suffering survivors.

9 hours ago, Clanstarling said:

I'm not sure I think she was naive - even a person who is a realist can be hurt by the slings and arrows in the media (and within the family). Even they like to be appreciated and recognized for their value and contributions. It's human.

It's often those who are prickliest on the outside who get hurt more easily than most.

 

It's not as if Anne didn't have as many pretty frocks and expensive jewels as she would ever hope for.  She was pretty attractive herself when she was younger.

3 hours ago, Ohiopirate02 said:

Elizabeth was 3rd in line to the throne at birth.  Her grandfather famously said near the end of his life that he hoped David didnt do anything to stop Bertie and Lilibet from taking the throne.   David never wanted to be king, he had no desire to marry an appropriate girl to sire heirs, he may have also been sterile.   While the abdication did speed up the timeline,  Elizabeth was always going to be Queen.

I agree that she probably would be.  Then again, David may have also tired of Mrs. Simpson eventually, and married a young beauty who had a better chance of siring an heir.  I do think he wanted to be King though, just his way.

Had he though?  I seriously doubt Hitler would have left England alone after conquering the rest of Europe.  So either way, his Kingship wasn't going to last.

1 hour ago, Ohiopirate02 said:

Like I said, the abdication moved up the timeline, then WWII happened,  and that took a toll on Elizabeth's father.  His "smoking cure " for his stutter began in the 1920s because he was the Duke of York and even then David showed no signs of settling down.  David always wanted the perks of being a royal without all of the responsibility.   

The show chooses to portray Elizabeth as cold and uncaring,  when that may not be the case.  Woman of her social status were not hands-on mothers.  They depended upon nannies to do the grunt work.  I do believe she loves her children in her own way.  

Again though, yes, nannies did the grunt work for some, but most mothers at least spent some "quality time" with their children.  Honestly, I can't imagine never wanting to be with your own children.

1 hour ago, Growsonwalls said:

I also think that Elizabeth II is a good politician. Her role is on the surface non-political but she's always had a good pulse of what political notes to strike. 

Pols often view everyone through the lens of how this affects them politically. I think Liz figured out early that her four kids had good attributes but weren't political prizes. They were homely, their personal lives were messy, they didn't have her iron discipline. 

All of those things could have been corrected if she had spent a bit of time trying.

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I don't think it would have been easy for Elizabeth to be a better parent. If everyone around you has kids and then hands them off to the nannies, and everyone thinks that system is just swell, why would you do any different? And plus, the kids have to know that Country Comes First, so it's better to toughen them up with nannies and boarding schools when they're young right? 

It's not necessarily easy to break out of this mold.  

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Pretty much every biography I've ever read about the Queen and/or her children mentions her enjoying being with them at bath time and giving them their baths.  

 

 

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On 11/17/2020 at 3:36 PM, laurakaye said:

Olivia Colman NAILED the scene where she was telling Philip that she could never bathe Charles when he was a baby because she didn't know how to hold him.  That was just heartbreaking and her tears were right on the verge of falling, but nonetheless they did not.  That's some serious skill.

Someone may have already mentioned this, but I thought she was talking about Andrew and Edward, not Charles--that she had them despite Phillip's reluctance to have more children because she wanted to be a more hands-on mother than she was with Charles and Anne, but unfortunately she could not even bathe them.

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8 hours ago, Badger said:

Pretty much every biography I've ever read about the Queen and/or her children mentions her enjoying being with them at bath time and giving them their baths.  

 

 

That does not surprise me at all.  Peter Morgan definitely has his own view of Elizabeth and the Royal Family, and he is not going to let a pesky thing like facts distract him from the narrative he wants to tell.  The Royal Family has also released home videos that tell a different story than the show as well. 

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12 hours ago, Umbelina said:

Another example of a Queen doing her duty, while keeping her children close.  Elizabeth wasn't raised to have her children be in another county while she was in Malta.  Surely she could have managed to have nannies there, the kids were babies.

I've always wondered if she was so crazy about Philip that she would rather have him all to herself and not have to deal with the kids.  I think they both liked having the other's undivided attention, and in Malta she would have been able to give that to him since she wasn't queen, yet.  

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2 hours ago, Normades said:

I've always wondered if she was so crazy about Philip that she would rather have him all to herself and not have to deal with the kids.  I think they both liked having the other's undivided attention, and in Malta she would have been able to give that to him since she wasn't queen, yet.  

I could see that. In many ways she's like a less extreme version of Queen Victoria, who also preferred her husband and dogs over her kids. 

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4 hours ago, Normades said:

I've always wondered if she was so crazy about Philip that she would rather have him all to herself and not have to deal with the kids.  I think they both liked having the other's undivided attention, and in Malta she would have been able to give that to him since she wasn't queen, yet.  

She married at 21. If she had had a choice, she hadn't perhaps wanted kids for a few years, but getting an heir and a spare as soon as possible was a duty. Later she really planned to have more chidren.  

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17 hours ago, Badger said:

Pretty much every biography I've ever read about the Queen and/or her children mentions her enjoying being with them at bath time and giving them their baths.  

 

 

Actually, I read a few days ago that the biography Charles cooperated with, or approved of?  Has a quote from him detailing the nanny bathing him while his mother sat on a stool in the back of the bathroom.

So, I think that's where the writers got that.

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Stick to discussion of the episode, please. Discussion or mention of future events is NOT ALLOWED in episode topics, including mention of 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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