It seems that only a couple of decades ago, if you were a republican, you didn’t have an overabundance of royalist TV shows and films shoved down your throat. Up until very recently, all you had to put up with was the occasional movie such as The Madness Of King George or Mrs Brown, and over on the telly you’d periodically flick past Trooping The Colour, The Queen’s Christmas Message, and The Royal Variety Performance. These days however, you can’t sit down to a few hours of TV without a deluge of nauseating royalist entertainment flooding your EPG from daytime all the way to primetime and of course catch-up.
The noughties slowly ushered-in an ever-increasing amount of movies about the monarchy; The Queen in 2006, Elizabeth: The Golden Age in 2007, The Other Boleyn Girl and The Duchess in 2008, The Young Victoria in 2009, The King’s Speech in 2010, and W.E. in 2011. With the success of these films (aside from Madonna‘s W.E. of course) Hollywood churned out more and more of them. More recently we’ve had A Royal Night Out in 2015, Victoria & Abdul and King Charles III in 2017 and Mary Queen Of Scots and The Favourite in 2018. That’s hardly excessive I hear you say, and I agree, but you have to realise that folk pay exorbitant amounts to go to the cinema so the producers and writers have to be a lot more cautious with their output.
On TV on the other hand, there is a veritable onslaught of television programmes dedicated to the British royal family, and just by the shear quantity, this scheduling is tantamount to royalist propaganda. So going through each of the main channels here in the UK, here’s some of the shows airing on TV (there’s probably lots more, this is just the stuff I could either remember or could find in my TV guide):-
Firstly, on the BBC, there’s various documentaries including The Diamond Queen, Elizabeth At 90, and The Coronation. There’s the ten-part drama series The White Queen, the miniseries Wolf Hall, and four series of The Tudors. There’s also Monarchy: The Royal Family At Work, Victoria & Albert: The Royal Wedding, Princess Margaret: The Royal Rebel, and the “let’s entice the plebs-special” Danny Dyer’s Right Royal Family.
ITV’s offerings include The Royal Wives Of Windsor, Royal Stories, A Very Royal Wedding, Prince Harry’s Story: Four Royal Weddings…, Charles And Camilla, Alan Titchmarsh’s The Queen’s Garden, Kate: The Making Of A Modern Queen, and of course the channel’s most popular drama series Victoria which has gone on for three seasons so far. And don’t forget about the not-so-obvious royalist show Britain’s Got Talent which has elongated the horrid Royal Variety Performance into months of jestering.
Of course every time there’s a “special occasion” we have lots more to contend with and this is on top of a schedule already jam-packed with masses of monarch-based monotony. To mark the birthday of Prince Charles for example, we had Prince, Son and Heir: Charles at 70 airing on the BBC in 2018. In 2017, it was the 20th anniversary of Princess Diana’s death so there was Diana: In Her Own Words showing on the BBC. There were also documentaries commissioned by Prince William and Prince Harry themselves; Diana, 7 Days for the BBC and Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy over on ITV.
Back to the regular schedule, Channel 4‘s shows Spying On The Royals or Princess Diana’s ‘Wicked’ Stepmother also attempted to entice the public with their tune-bait titles. And Channel 5 when not showing shitty shows about overweight gypsies on benefits or army cadet Nazi Egyptologists, are showing god-awful royalist garbage including Secrets Of The Royal Yachts, Secrets Of The Royal Servants, Diana To Meghan: Royal Wedding Secrets, Wallis & Edward: Victims Of Love, Meghan And Harry: In Their Own Words, Meghan Markle: The First 100 Days, Queen Victoria And Her Tragic Family, The Queen At Christmas: Inside Sandringham, Elizabeth I: The Golden Era, Inside Windsor Castle, Inside Balmoral, Inside Buckingham Palace, and Inside The Tower Of London. And just this week begins the weirdly titled Paxman On The Queen’s Children (unfortunately it doesn’t feature Jeremy Paxman wrestling Charles, Anne, Andrew, and Edward oiled up and in the buff).
Outside of terrestrial TV, there’s UKTV’s Private Lives Of The Monarchs, Sky Arts’ Royalty Close Up as well as The Queen’s 90th Birthday Concert and of course Sky One’s Christmas special The Queen And I. International channels are also at it with ABC’s The Story Of The Royals, Lifetime’s William & Kate: The Movie and Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance and The Hallmark Channel’s William & Catherine: A Royal Romance.
It has to be said that 99% of this royal-based entertainment blitz is unwatchable. People may point to Netflix’s The Crown which has won awards and approval from critics (unfortunately I haven’t watched it to be able to comment) but don’t forget that on the other end of the scale there’s E! Entertainment‘s trashy soap opera The Royals and the wannabe-funny The Windsors on Channel 4.
With consecutive royal weddings and births, the last few years have given obvious reasons for some of this programming, and of course, with the ongoing Brexit shambles, the UK has to have some sort of money-generating commodity I suppose. But surely selling the royals is for the international crowd, why do we Brits have to watch all this shit? What exactly is the purpose, aside from bolstering the concept of hierarchy and the class system? How much more subservient can the population become?
It seems that people who can’t stand this relentless royalist repetition are few and far between, but I can foresee that if these boot-licking writers and directors don’t back-down with their round-the-clock royalism, at some point it’s going to have the opposite effect and the public will soon, even subconsciously begin to despise the royal family. So can we for one pissing month or week go without the incessant buzz of the royals? This wedding, that wedding, this birth, that death, this anniversary, that birthday… all this dramatisation and documenting the dreary lives of these dullards is doing my head in. If it’s not the entertainment channels it’s the news channels; staking out the entrance of a hospital, swarming around a car accident or standing outside on the mall, waving their union jacks with the rest of the doormats. It’s like every cough and fart produced by these blue bloods has to be chronicled and every little uneventful event translated to celluloid or converted to a digital signal and beamed into the idiot box. God only knows what it’ll be like when one of them pops their clogs.
We’ve had years upon years and months upon months of majestic mundanity on TV and on the big screen and I’m now sick to death of seeing these kingly cunts day-in and day-out. All this regal rubbish, this non-stop noble nonsense, and this queenly claptrap needs to be toned-the-fuck down. I think it’s high-time we had a break from this back-to-back Buckingham bullshit and this sustained Sandringham shite. Can these bejeweled bastards please just bugger-off to Balmoral for a year and take all their royalist programming with them? If I wanted to watch a bunch of German reptiles do fuck all, I’d go to the Cologne Zoo.