TV Review: The Royals (1×10) “Our Wills and Fates Do So Contrary Run”


THE SITUATION: All Hell Breaks Loose

We’re still in the aftermath of Simon’s attack and Liam/Eleanor being declared illegitimate. It doesn’t really look like anything is going to get better soon.

Scum. SCUM, I SAY.

The royal doctor isn’t thrilled about being sent on a three-year mission to Gibraltar. He did just as Cyrus asked and declared the twins illegitimate (without even testing the blood in the first place)—what more does he want? For the good doctor to go away, apparently.

Cyrus goes to visit his mother, who is currently standing at her comatose son’s bedside. She reaffirms her faith in Cyrus—that is, until we realize that she isn’t quite with us and thinks that Cyrus is actually Simon and that her deceased husband is still alive. She warns him about Cyrus’s intentions, seemingly breaking Cyrus’s heart. The scene is rather sad, but it doesn’t change the fact that Cyrus is ABSOLUTE SCUM.

Liam’s (Almost) Escape

After Liam wakes up to find out that Ophelia rescued him, he asks her to escape to Rio to celebrate being free for the first time. Ophelia lies to her father about going to New York, while Liam strikes a deal with Cyrus: he’ll go away quietly if he can take the private jet.

Liam realizes that someone must have moved him before Ophelia found him and discovers he’s wearing a necklace that doesn’t belong to him. The necklace has the same symbol (a stack of books?) that was on a card Helena looked at earlier. The discovery of the royal doctor’s sudden trip to Gibraltar during Simon’s time of need can only mean one thing: SOMETHING IS AFOOT! He drops Ophelia off in New York so she can chase her dreams, then returns to England to avenge his father.

JasperEleanor1 JasperEleanor2

Eleanor and Jasper On the Case

Eleanor dismisses the charges against Jasper, releasing him from jail. “No apology?” he asks. He’s lucky she even dignifies that with a response. In a world where everyone is lying, she has to turn to him, the person who’s pretty much nonstop lied to her since they started speaking. At least she knows where they stand. Jasper sends Eleanor to pick up the weapons he hid in her room. When she points out that he could have told her about all this, he has the perfect response: “Considering our relationship, I didn’t want you to have access to loaded firearms.”

When they meet with Brandon, he informs them that the Major used to take calls directly from the Palace, firming the suspicion that the order came from on high. He asserts that he never would have killed Robert had he known his target, since Robert was such a good person. The false suicide note convinced him to come clean to Eleanor; it isn’t fair to Robert or anyone left behind.

Helena’s Big Lie

Helena follows Gemma’s advice, addressing the current turmoil in a televised interview. She paints her past self as an innocent girl in love who happened to be in over her head. This led to her having an affair with Henry, who later died in battle. Woah, Helena. Denying your relationship with Alistair and using the memory of the man whose death plagues him with guilt? Way harsh.

Lucius brings Helena’s letter to Alistair. She apologizes for tarnishing Henry’s legacy and asks for a year’s worth of space. Lucius says, “Nothing personal, Captain Lacey. Tell Henry the same.” MAYDAY, CAPTAIN. Lucius leaves and two official-looking dudes walk in, sounding two gunshots! THEY KILLED HIM! I think—it happened off screen, so I can’t be totally sure. Helena asked Lucius to deliver the letter, but Cyrus gave the kill order.


End Scene

Liam, convinced Cyrus was the one who attempted to kill Simon and had Robert murdered, gives his uncle an epic beatdown. Cut to Simon’s bedside, where Lucius is preparing to smother him to death. “Abolition is such a cowardly choice,” he says, before he’s interrupted. Why does Lucius care? Inquiring minds.

Cyrus admits that he wanted to kill him but ultimately couldn’t, which doesn’t stop Liam from punching him in the face. Marcus interrupts the fight: “Sir, please remove your hands from Great Britain’s king.” UHHHHH WHAT? Liam runs to Simon’s body, swearing to avenge him. Cyrus interrupts the touching moment to rip Simon’s king ring off of his finger, shoving it on his own bloody hand.

When Eleanor and Jasper run in to see a teary Liam surrounded by their closest friends and staff, she collapses into her brother’s arms, sobbing. Helena is busy putting on a brave face, greeting mourners at the gates. Someone in the back of the crowd throws up a banner with that symbol. Safe to say that’s going to be a thing.


  • Liam Pushes Ophelia Towards Her Dreams
    Mad props to Liam for bringing Ophelia to New York for her audition rather than Rio. He apologizes for being selfish, explaining that he can’t ask her to give up her dreams and destiny for him. They break up, but Liam has hope for the future.
  • Alistair’s Apparent Assassination
    I didn’t expect The Royals to go there, but they did! Poor Alistair and poor Helena when she eventually finds out.
  • Lorde’s Badass Cover of “Everybody Wants To Rule The World”
    That’s how you sing out an episode.


  • Marcus’s Feelings For Ophelia?
    Gemma talks to Marcus about how it must be hard seeing “the girl of [his] dreams,” i.e. Ophelia, drive off with someone who’s going to get tired of her eventually. MY QUESTION: when did Marcus develop feelings for Ophelia? What? I hope that was supposed to be the first instance of that.
  • What Is That Symbol?
    Come on, The Royals, you aren’t giving us ANYTHING about that symbol until next season? Why does it look like a shelf full of books?
  • Cyrus Is Going To Be a Father…Again.
    Ugh, I was not excited to see that Prudence was pregnant.

And that’s a wrap on the first season of The Royals! Sadly, we’ll have to wait until November to get a second season’s worth of royal drama and antics. All together, The Royals ended up dealing with way heavier topics than I expected it to—and I certainly wasn’t expecting to see two deaths (supposedly) come to pass in this season finale. Schwann, you went for it. But I suppose you always do go for the season finale shocker.

Things I’m hoping to see in the second season:

  • Liam becoming the rightful King
  • Vengeance, Eleanor-style
  • Someone telling me what that symbol means
  • Helena working with her kids instead of against them
  • All of this combining into an epic takedown of Cyrus

What did you think of the first season of The Royals? Is there anything you’re hoping to see in the second season that isn’t listed above? Sound off in the comments.

Episode Rating: 8/10

Season Rating: 7/10

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 Twitter: @bri_lockhart