An assassin, a stalker, and her evil Uncle Cumberland...Jenna Coleman’s queen had more enemies than Clara Oswald. No spoilers were necessary when she survived the finale of Victoria, by Jim Shelley
It came as something of a surprise to find that the final episode of Victoria had been treated as a cliff-hanger, as if the audience were in suspense about whether the plucky heroine was going to meet a tragic end.
The pulsating, foreboding, violins suggested a terrible fate awaited her at any moment but you don’t need to warn of any Spoilers to say that Victoria survived, as we always knew she would.
ITV had already announced there was going to be a second series for one thing.
Finale: It came as something of a surprise to find that the final episode of Victoria had been treated as a cliff-hanger
Plus the most uneducated viewer was surely aware that Victoria lived on (and on and on) and not even this series’ scriptwriter couldn’t take that many liberties with the facts. Not quite.
Mind you, there’s no disputing that as Episode Eight began the young queen was in trouble.
An assassin, a stalker, and her evil Uncle Cumberland were just the start of her problems. In this story at least, having a baby was even more dangerous.
Her husband (the King), her mother (a German), and the queen’s doctor (an extra) took turns to remind Victoria that she might die in childbirth, as her cousin Princess Charlotte did.
Trouble ahead? Her husband, her mother, and the queen’s doctor took turns to remind Victoria that she might die in childbirth, as her cousin Princess Charlotte did
We were pretty sure she wouldn’t – unlike her.
‘I think about Charlotte. I am scared...No queen regnant has even given birth before,’ she fretted to Albert.
Even before this Victoria was about as keen on being pregnant as a teenager in EastEnders, moaning about feeling fat, over-heated, and just ‘a vessel’ for the Royal baby.
‘No one looks at me anymore not even Albert. Just this !’’ she complained during one tantrum, indicating her bump that on one occasion she referred to as ‘Wrigglepants’ which didn’t strike as necessarily historically-accurate.
Fed up: Even before this Victoria was about as keen on being pregnant as a teenager in EastEnders
In bed at night Albert was more interested in reading the jokes in Punch than listening to his wife’s complaints.
‘Who is the greatest chicken killer in Shakespeare’s plays?’ he quoted. ‘Macbeth - because he did murder most foul hahaha.’
And they say Germans have no sense of humour. At least he gave Jenna Coleman the chance to mutter the immortal line: ‘We are not amused.’
Throughout the series Victoria was portrayed as a pioneer if not quite a feminist icon in most regards but not this.
Expecting: ‘No one looks at me anymore not even Albert. Just this !’’ she complained during one tantrum
‘I want you find me a wet nurse immediately !’ she instructed Lehzen, stressing she did not want to breast-feed like her mother.
‘She is not a queen !’ Victoria pouted. ‘And I am not a cow.’
A matter of opinion…
People had questioned Jenna Coleman’s suitability for playing the title role but if nothing else being under constant attack from Daleks, Cybermen, and evil snowmen had prepared her for Victoria’s embattled state.
Mind you even Clara Oswald hadn’t encountered a creature as blatantly heinous as Uncle Cumberland, the new king of Hanover.
No help: In bed at night Albert was more interested in reading the jokes in Punch than listening to his wife’s complaints
A sinister, sweating, scarred, figure he looked more like a villain from Gotham City than Prussia in the 1840s. You probably know the type. Every family has one. Uncle Cumberland wanted to remove and replace Victoria - by any means necessary.
‘If the queen should not survive the travails of childbirth and if the infant should die, then the Duke of Cumberland will not just be King of Hanover but of Great Britain,’ warned her steward Penge.
‘Cumberland is next in line to the throne,’ warned Sir Robert Peel. ‘He is like a vulture circling his prey.’
Sure enough, the queen’s uncle made even checking she had received his wedding present (some spoons) malevolent, with Peter Firth twiddling his villain’s moustache with all the subtlety of a Dickensian panto.
Target: People had questioned Jenna Coleman’s suitability for playing the title role but if nothing else being under constant attack from Daleks, Cybermen, and evil snowmen had prepared her for Victoria’s embattled state
‘I do hope that you will take care,’ he advised darkly.
‘What do you mean?’ Victoria asked naively.
‘These daily drives of yours,’ he mentioned pointedly. ‘London seems so volatile and it would be unfortunate if violets were to be replaced with something harder.’
This was a reference to Victoria’s recent incident with a certain Captain Childers, an obsessed admirer from the army, and possibly the first Royal stalker.
‘I have a house of elegant proportions in Paternoster Row where you can be free from the German tyrant !’ he implored when her carriage was caught up in a crowd.
Drama: 19 year-old Edward Oxford's assassination attempt actually took place in Green Park in 1840, when Victoria was only four months pregnant. But this version was more dramatic
The army man and early Brexit advocate tossed a posy of violets into her majesty’s lap as the Peelers dragged him away to the tower.
Uncle Cumberland appeared to have a more menacing threat to Victoria’s well being in 19 year-old Edward Oxford whose assassination attempt actually took place in Green Park in 1840, when Victoria was only four months pregnant. But this version was more dramatic.
‘It is three o’clock and I have my bonnet on !’ Victoria announced to Albert. ‘It is my duty to show myself to my people.’
The police investigation later discovered Oxford was also affiliated to a group of activists.
‘Not Chartists !’ spluttered Peel.
Family strife: ‘Do you really think Uncle Cumberland would try and shoot me in broad daylight?’ Victoria gasped, confirming even she found the storyline hard to believe
No even worse than that, an early version of UKIP - ‘the Young England society.’
‘It doesn’t matter what happens to me !’ the deranged gunman told the rozzers when they threatened him with hanging for treason. ‘Young England will make sure that my name lives on.’
Yes, them and ITV.
Increasingly he seemed more like a patsy (full name: Edward Oxford Harvey Oswald) - set up by the Duke.
‘We found a letter in his lodgings telling him to await instructions from HANOVER,’ the detective said.
‘I always knew that your wicked Uncle Cumberland would try and kill you one day,’ cried Victoria’s mother. ‘He murdered his valet before you were born.’
She could have mentioned it before you thought.
Family: Jenna got to do the classic EastEnders’ scene of giving birth shortly after demanding all the men in attendance to ‘go away’ even though it was ‘the custom'
‘Do you really think Uncle Cumberland would try and shoot me in broad daylight?’ Victoria gasped, confirming even she found the storyline hard to believe.
Cumberland’s denial was pretty convincing too.
‘Surely you cannot believe that a senior member of the royal family would contemplate regicide and I would choose as my instrument a half-witted pot-boy form south of the river?’ he scoffed to Peel.
It transpired ye olde CPS were just as inept then as they are now. King Albert himself had seen Oxford fire twice but the policeman in charge argued ‘there is no evidence that the guns were loaded’ and that Hanover’s letter was ‘Oxford writing to himself.’
There were plenty of witnesses, including all of us. It was even on film – not CCTV but on ITV. Perhaps Victoria had been shot at from a grassy knoll after all.
Daughter: Sensibly grovelling to his missus, Albert said they should name the baby Victoria - ‘after a great queen'
Oxford was acquitted on the grounds of insanity, ending up being sent to Bedlam.
‘If Oxford goes free, then I become a prisoner !’ wailed Victoria, making a stand for generations of Royals to come.
It was almost as if she knew that Oxford’s assassination attempt would be the first of many.
This was the way Victoria was portrayed – as the missing link between Lady Mary in Downton Abbey and Germaine Greer - and despite looking more like someone from Made In Chelsea than the real queen, Jenna Coleman did a good job covering all the bases.
She got to do the classic EastEnders’ scene of giving birth shortly after demanding all the men in attendance to ‘go away’ even though it was ‘the custom.'
Sensibly grovelling to his missus, Albert said they should name the baby Victoria - ‘after a great queen.’
‘I’m glad I still have you,’ he charmed, which didn’t really do justice to everything she’d been through.
Even he seemed to have known that she was going to survive all along.
Love: ‘I’m glad I still have you,’ he charmed, which didn’t really do justice to everything she’d been through
Most watched News videos
- CCTV captures final tragic moments of Mirna Salihin's life
- Mother shaves daughters hair after she 'bullies cancer girl'
- GRAPHIC CONTENT: 'Ghost' rises from body after fatal crash
- Bulls head butt each other then die instantly from brutal blow
- Shocking moment girl gets viciously beaten after starting fight
- Mother releases devastating footage of son's final moments
- Lorry smashes into car leaving driver with severe injuries
- Is this the creepy moment the corpse of a girl OPENS her eyes?
- 'Big fat gypsy wedding' in Romania goes on for FOUR days
- Groom ALREADY tired of marriage life just after 15 minutes
- 'Pascal's a G!' Kim Kardashian speaks well of her bodyguard
- GoPro captures the moment a croc swims amongst swimmers