TV Review: The Royals (3×02) “Passing Through Nature to Eternity”

THE SITUATION:

At the Electric Carnival, Eleanor and Liam talk out ways to have happy love lives in the midst of this royal mess.  

The State of the Twins

Eleanor wakes up to a little girl named Sara Alice asking her questions about being a princess, namely the whereabouts of her prince. When Eleanor realizes she’s not going away, she gets up and convinces her that the drugs out on the table are the Queen’s poison. She delivers Sara Alice to Jasper. “I found this in my room, you can have it. Be warned, it’s chatty,” she says. We find out that Sara Alice is Mr. Hill’s daughter as she follows Jasper around the house.

Mr. Hill takes this opportunity to question Jasper’s intentions regarding Eleanor. He also points out that no matter who Eleanor is involved with, there will be a media circus, which he promises to help Jasper with when the time comes. Jasper seems subdued about it. Eleanor pretends to grill Jasper about the other girls he’s been sporting with–namely Sara Alice. The two joke about exclusivity, which leads Eleanor to point out that not being exclusive works both ways.

Liam and his blonde bartender (Catherine) are having coffee and reminiscing about the last time they saw one another. They apparently took a picture, the significance of which has not been revealed to us quite yet. Catherine has an A+ reaction when Liam says he has to go. “Go–I have to sell your cup on ebay,” she says. She can stay, though I thought they were going to make Willow a love interest? I feel like they’re not quite sure what to do with Liam’s love life from week to week.

The Electric Carnival

Eleanor goes to see Liam and questions him about what’s been going on as she covers up another black eye. He explains that he’s been sorting through his thoughts about Ted, but doesn’t share his methods. “Do you want some advice? Stop getting punched in the face,” she says. She invites him to the Electric Carnival with Jasper as their security detail. Liam calls her out for wanting to make Jasper jealous, but he’s game to have a bit of fun.

At the carnival, Eleanor explains that she’s flirting with every guy in sight to make Jasper jealous. She needs him to admit that he wants to be exclusive with her before she admits that she wants to be with him. This is a ridiculous game that seems like a ton of work, but to each their own. Jasper is trying to seem like he’s not bothered, but he’s secretly been knocking these guys out where Eleanor can’t see. Eleanor asks what’s been happening with the guys, then why Liam is constantly bruised. Jasper explains that Liam is preoccupied with Ted’s death, the #KingLiam movement, and the fact that he likes a girl but is trying to keep his distance.

gif credit: sorenkingsley.tumblr.com

On Liam’s end, Willow explains Helena’s job offer to him, which he supports. He thinks they’d be lucky to have her on board, but wants her to be well aware of his family’s lunacy before she takes the plunge. With the #KingLiam movement on his mind, Liam discusses it with Jasper, who insists that he would do a good job as king. Liam explains that Robert always had it worse than he and Eleanor, since he was always in the spotlight as the Crown Prince. Eleanor assures Liam that Robert would be proud of him. Thinking of Jasper’s earlier words, she explains that she wants to be with him, but is worried their lives are too fucked up for him.

Robert Isn’t Quite Ready to Talk to a Volleyball Yet

Robert is still playing Cast Away on that island–now with a bonus hallucination! He sees a woman in a white dress and triangle tattoo from afar. We can’t see her face just yet, and I’m sure there’s a reason for it. He continues to imagine what it would be like to return to his former life, being questioned by the press and possibly disappointing Eleanor. Thinking again of his hallucination, Robert lights the flare.

Romances Explored

When Liam asks for alone time, Jasper visits Eleanor. She pretends not to know why he didn’t have a good time at the Electric Carnival, which brings him to his breaking point. “You know I want to be with you but I’ll never be sanctioned,” he says, bringing up his past and how they’ll hold it against her. She brings him to the library and explains that six hundred years ago, a queen had an affair with a bodyguard. They communicated using love letters in a hidden book, which she now checks every day. “It’s not fair to you to have to settle for someone you’d have to hide,” Jasper says. “Who said I’d be settling?” Eleanor responds. Later, she finds a note from Cyrus in the book. Things are looking good for them, but it’s early in the season yet.

Liam goes to visit Catherine. He kisses her and affirms that he wants her. When they’re in bed later, the camera pans to show us that the same tattoo as Robert’s hallucination–Liam’s new lady love is his brother’s former flame!

Helena vs. Cyrus, Part Twelve

Helena is being pampered by an entire team when Lord Chamberlain walks in. They flirt a bit while he delivers her schedule, so we probably haven’t seen the last of their affair. Helena meets with Wilhemina (hereafter known as Willow) and offers her a job: convince the world that Liam is king. She promises that she can be trusted when it comes to Liam’s future.

Meanwhile, Cyrus is announcing his cancer diagnosis and prognosis on a late night TV show. He claims that he’s sharing the news so that people in the palace can’t use it against him, especially since his family only cares about image and their wealth empire. He insists that while Violet was the only good person in the palace, at least he’ll be honest with them.

Hill gets the reclusive Cyrus to go to his office for a retinal scan. While he’s waiting at the desk, Cyrus sees who he thinks is Violet on the security cameras. He runs through the grounds to find her, completely forgetting that he’s supposed to be laying low. Helena and her crew use this opportunity (and Cyrus’s body double) to get into Cyrus’s room and kidnap his testicle for DNA testing. Cyrus is furious over Helena’s actions. “You better watch your back, bitch,” he says to her, stating that he’s now got nothing to lose in the game.

With things going well in the love lives for our favorite royal siblings, you know everything is about to come crashing down. I’m curious to see how Robert’s return is going to affect everything–it could be a super cliched jealousy storyline, but it could also be an interesting exploration of brothers working towards each other’s happiness. As for Helena and Cyrus, I truly hope this season brings us the end of Cyrus’s ridiculous reign. Let’s be real: his antics got old in the first season.

Bri is a 25-year-old born and raised in the swamps of Jersey. Just kidding, she lives at least twenty minutes from those swamps. She’s a publishing professional that moonlights as a writer. She enjoys going to concerts (anything from Rooney to Springsteen to NKOTBSB), roadtripping, and complaining that she truly belongs in the 1950’s, the 1920′s, or the 1980′s depending on her mood. She definitely owns more books than she should and reads every chance she gets. If you stop hearing from her, it’s because the book piles have fallen over and smothered her to death in the night. You can contact her at bri@theyoungfolks.com. Twitter: @bri_lockhart