TV Review: The Royals (1×07) “Your Sovereignty of Reason”

TheRoyalsTopPicTHE SITUATION: THE REFERENDUM COMETH

The castle falls into chaos when King Simon formally announces the referendum to abolish the monarchy. Ophelia gains the attention of the paparazzi when a topless photo from Monaco hits the tabloids.

What Happens In Monaco Doesn’t Stay in Monaco

Ophelia’s topless form is splashed across every major tabloid in England, linked with referendum rumors. The royal siblings advise: Eleanor promises a new distraction will come, while Liam instructs her not to give them a reaction. Unfortunately, Helena tips the paparazzi off about Phi’s mother; when one of them shouts “Is [your mother] an American slut too?” Ophelia gives them the reaction they want, while Marcus punches the jerk. Liam is pissed—he confronts his mother, asserting that he and Ophelia are officially together and that she will now have her own security detail.

Phi does get some good news—spots in Ballantine’s Dance Company have opened up in New York and she’s in the running. She asks Marcus to keep it a secret from Liam until it’s confirmed.

duchessIntroducing the Grand Duchess Alexandra

Helena’s mother, the Grand Duchess Alexandra (Joan Collins) is here for a visit and to inform Helena that she isn’t working hard enough to ensure the survival of the monarchy. However, after Simon’s announcement, Alexandra is convinced that Helena will have the strength “to do what’s necessary.” Anyone who has studied history basically ever knows that phrase to be a very bad sign of things to come.

The Referendum Cometh

Simon takes to a televised broadcast to formally call for the referendum to abolish the monarchy, throwing a decent amount of shade at his family and himself in the process. Liam blames himself, but Eleanor insists that their father is happy for him, promising to find out what’s going on.

When Simon discovers that Cyrus and Helena let Prudence go before Simon’s “crush got out of hand,” he promises to strip Cyrus of all lands and titles and divorce Helena. Unfortunately, his anger doesn’t stop there—he lashes out at Eleanor for her drug habits and disrespect. Eleanor is upset, but is more concerned about her brother.

Simon gives up on waiting for Liam in the secret passage, leaving on his usual walk alone. At the same time, Ophelia sees Cyrus sneaking out of the castle. The episode closes out with King Simon bleeding out on the steps from an apparent stab wound.

EleanorEleanor Might Be Making a Discovery

Helena asks her daughter for drugs, but Eleanor turns her down. “Any other day I’d be happy to help you mom, but dad’s disappointed in me,” she says, moping in a haze. The turn of events seems to inspire some sort of breakdown, as Eleanor spends the rest of the episode defacing royal property with red spray paint. That is, until she brings drugs to Helena’s empty room and we see Jasper’s playing card cufflink fall to the ground.

ON THE PLUS SIDE

  • Ted Has Eleanor’s Back
    When Eleanor comes looking for Jasper, Ted asks her what’s been happening, promising that they can put him away for three years for slander against the crown if something happened. Of course, she doesn’t take him up on it, but that’s not the point.
  • Simon Threatens Helena and Cyrus
    It was so, so satisfying to see Simon threaten his wife with divorce and his brother with losing his lifestyle.

HOWEVER…

  • Helena Plays Dirty
    Telling the paparazzi to bait Ophelia with her dead mom? Dick move, Helena.
  • The Visit From the Grand Duchess
    Though I enjoyed seeing her adversarial relationship with Helena and her adoration for the twins, Alexandra’s visit was kind of a time waste.

Heaviosity, dudes. Who knew The Royals was going to get this intense? This episode was a bit of a downer following last week’s lighter fare.

Episode Rating: 6.5/10

 

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