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S01.E05: An Ordinary Woman 2016.09.18

This may be history, but didn't I read somewhere in these forum posts that Victoria and Albert actually did get engaged after only 3 days of meeting again?

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Excuse me, but a couple episodes ago she knew all about Melbourne's wife running off with another man. She also knew Albert's mother was run off for having an affair. She's quite aware of infidelity and unhappy marriages. The fact that in this episodes she's suddenly scandalized to find out that men also cheat! is ridiculous.

It's a fine point but there's a difference between a man leaving his wife for another woman, and staying married but having a regular mistress on the side. The former could not help but be noticed, while the latter is something kept on the down-low and may not have been a concept Victoria was aware of. Or at the very least it did not occur to her that Albert would take a mistress after marrying her until he brought up the subject of his allowance. Victoria was very naive about what he wanted the money for. She didn't see any need for him to have an allowance, since she could pay for everything herself. She didn't really understand why a man would want to be self-sufficient. 

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This may be history, but didn't I read somewhere in these forum posts that Victoria and Albert actually did get engaged after only 3 days of meeting again?

No. They met several times before they became engaged. You will recall that Victoria has clearly met Albert before he appears on the show - when she sees him she remarks on how different he looks than the last time she saw him. (She reprimands Dash for barking at him, even if he does "look so much different" than the last time they met.)

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1 hour ago, iMonrey said:
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This may be history, but didn't I read somewhere in these forum posts that Victoria and Albert actually did get engaged after only 3 days of meeting again?

No. They met several times before they became engaged. You will recall that Victoria has clearly met Albert before he appears on the show - when she sees him she remarks on how different he looks than the last time she saw him. (She reprimands Dash for barking at him, even if he does "look so much different" than the last time they met.)

Right, but the OP was asking if they were engaged within 3 days of meeting again. V&A knew each other from childhood and were considered a match all along, but it had been awhile. Did they get engaged during on this one visit after having not seen each other in some years?

Edited by snarktini.
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I can't attest to the accuracy (or lack thereof) in this show depicting the timing of the actual proposal. I believe Victoria and Albert had regular contact before and after her coronation, and in all probability he went to meet her that final time knowing full well the proposal would take place then. The show makes it seem like they hadn't seen each other in a long time and that she had no interest in him up until that point, so that's deliberately misleading.

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Victoria first met Albert in 1836.  Albert and Victoria felt mutual affection and the Queen proposed to him on 15 October 1839, just five days after he had arrived at Windsor.

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17 hours ago, blackwing said:

......And one of the final scenes of this episode... Melbourne says goodbye and watches her depart.  She slowly walks away and then she actually runs down the hall.  Because there's no lack of subtlety.  She is running because she is eager to start her new life.  I get it.

My husband is first generation German-American (Dad was WWII refugee).  He is enjoying this immensely- keeps saying 'that's the German in him!!!!'

Anyway, as she left Lord M, hubby noted that she didn't even look back.

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1 hour ago, b2H said:

Anyway, as she left Lord M, hubby noted that she didn't even look back.

So much for a great love.  Sorry, I couldn't resist.

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Victoria first met Albert in 1836.  Albert and Victoria felt mutual affection and the Queen proposed to him on 15 October 1839, just five days after he had arrived at Windsor.

To be fair to the show, they are probably trying to shorthand "love at first sight." Which seems historically accurate - letters from Victoria to her uncle indicate that she was indeed smitten with Albert the first time she met him. However, the time between that and her proposal to him was a matter of years, not days. 

I continue to be baffled why this show felt the need to rush through the courtship between Victoria and Albert. If I had to guess, I suppose they tried to shoehorn as much story as possible into eight episodes in case they didn't get another season. It's a real shame because I think the entire season could have been spent on their courtship alone.

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Really? I think that would have been boring. I love watching "unfolding romance' like any right-thinking human (lol) but I would have been eventually bored out of my skull wondering just how many ways you can spell 'courtship'. 

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An entire season focused on courtship would bore me to tears (I'm also missing the swoon gene), but I think they could have spent 8 episodes on this period of time from ascension to marriage. A young queen, growing into her role, learning about her kingdom. I'd like to see much more world-building. 

As shown, she comes across as vacuous. We're getting very little sense of her point of view or duties as queen. Since they've set up Albert as her foil, perhaps now we'll get to some of that. (If so, maybe the fast pace will pay off.)

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Mod Note:

We're sailing into 'correcting the show with actual history' territory here.

Please don't do that in the episode topics as per this forum's pinned spoiler policy.

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As shown, she comes across as vacuous. 

I agree - Victoria comes off a bit like a ninny, for lack of a better term. Then again, it's 1839 and she's 20 years old and about as unworldly as she could possibly be, having been raised in strict seclusion. So who's to say that's not how she really was. I think it would have been interesting to show how much she knew about "the birds and the bees" by her wedding night, and hows she would have learned about them. Governess? Mother? Uncle Leopold?

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On ‎02‎/‎07‎/‎2017 at 7:30 PM, iMonrey said:

Ernst may be more entertaining as a television character, but the reality is that he is very poor husband material. Much more likely to have a mistress than Albert will be, I think, which seems to be a chief concern of Victoria's.

Oh, absolutely.  But I'm not marrying him, so I'd much rather watch him than Albert, who bores me to tears.

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Ernst is a slut whose idea of a wedding gift is to "enroll" his brother at a "university of love".

You say that like it's a bad thing, lol.

I think the show has done a poor job of convincing me that Victoria and Albert are so mad for each other.  Maybe if they'd stretched the courtship out over a few more episodes, it would've work, but it just seemed so slapdash that I'm not buying it, as far as the show is concerned.

Edited by proserpina65.
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Haven't read any other comments yet. Just wanted to say that I thought the staging of the wedding was beautifully done. Really enjoyed watching that.

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On 2/6/2017 at 0:29 PM, Mindthinkr said:

Looking at it I wonder that it inspired Prince Charles to use (have custom made) a similar sapphire and diamond engagement ring when he proposed to Princess Diana. That ring is currently being worn by Prince William's wife Kate Middleton. Thank you for the clickable link. 

Wow, it certainly does look just like Diana's (now Kate's) engagement ring! I hadn't made the connection before. Thank you for pointing that out!

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I thought the wedding was breathtakingly beautiful. Albert looked resplendent in his red outfit. Lord M looked really hot.Her veil, dress, and crown of flowers were gorgeous. I wanted to cry...

I loved the scene where Lord M and Baroness Lehzen were like her parents having a bittersweet moment..."she's leaving us"..."as it should be".. they were like bird parents knowing it was time for their little chick to fly away.  They were more like parents to her than her own mother.

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On ‎2‎/‎6‎/‎2017 at 0:29 PM, Mindthinkr said:

Looking at it I wonder that it inspired Prince Charles to use (have custom made) a similar sapphire and diamond engagement ring when he proposed to Princess Diana. That ring is currently being worn by Prince William's wife Kate Middleton. Thank you for the clickable link. 

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Wow, it certainly does look just like Diana's (now Kate's) engagement ring! I hadn't made the connection before. Thank you for pointing that out!

Having trouble getting this to quote - finally resorted to copy and paste!  Anyway, I don't think Diana's engagement ring (now Catherine's) was custom made.  Isn't there some story about the jeweler showing up with various rings and Diana picking the one she liked?  I also seem to remember stories when William used the ring to propose to Catherine that other rings like it are out there since it was selected out of the royal jeweler's inventory and not custom made.  So any similarity to this piece of Victoria's jewelry seems coincidental. 

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Getting to this episode late (and right before it goes off the PBS free site), but I loved the intimacy of the ceremony.  I also am still wondering about the woman with the tall headpiece in the back of the procession. 

At the German "house of ill repute" <tm Albert>, I was quite taken out of the scene when Gretchen went over to a table and came back with paper and what looked like a nice modern Parker ballpoint pen.  When Albert asked for a "pen and paper", that should have meant paper, quill pen, and inkwell -- none of which I would have expected in that bedroom/workspace.  It's not like a Sheraton with stationery in the drawers. 

On ‎2‎/‎12‎/‎2017 at 5:08 PM, Calvada said:

 Anyway, I don't think Diana's engagement ring (now Catherine's) was custom made.  Isn't there some story about the jeweler showing up with various rings and Diana picking the one she liked?  I also seem to remember stories when William used the ring to propose to Catherine that other rings like it are out there since it was selected out of the royal jeweler's inventory and not custom made.  So any similarity to this piece of Victoria's jewelry seems coincidental. 

Yes, the ring for Diana was not custom-made.  And that style ring continued to be available from the jeweler who sold it to Prince Charles.

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On 2/19/2017 at 7:35 PM, jjj said:

Yes, the ring for Diana was not custom-made.  And that style ring continued to be available from the jeweler who sold it to Prince Charles.

It's popular in many ways. Pick a gemstone and search for a diamond halo setting. Fairly common.

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On ‎8‎.‎2‎.‎2017 at 9:55 PM, iMonrey said:

It's a fine point but there's a difference between a man leaving his wife for another woman, and staying married but having a regular mistress on the side. The former could not help but be noticed, while the latter is something kept on the down-low and may not have been a concept Victoria was aware of. Or at the very least it did not occur to her that Albert would take a mistress after marrying her until he brought up the subject of his allowance. 

I agree that the main point was Victoria's relationship with Albert. As a young girl in love, although she did already knew that all men and women weren't faithful spouses, it was still a shock that somebody she knew kept a mistress and that also Albert could do the same in the future. Which wasn't not all unlikely, on the contrary it was to expected.     

On ‎9‎.‎2‎.‎2017 at 2:26 AM, iMonrey said:

I continue to be baffled why this show felt the need to rush through the courtship between Victoria and Albert. If I had to guess, I suppose they tried to shoehorn as much story as possible into eight episodes in case they didn't get another season. It's a real shame because I think the entire season could have been spent on their courtship alone.

 

On ‎7‎.‎2‎.‎2017 at 8:59 PM, iMonrey said:

This is where the show really suffers in rushing through the entire courtship in just two episodes. 

I disagree with both of you. I couldn't stand more and can't even imagine what the screenwriters could invent as the love story of queen and prince has no room of misunderstandings which usually are stuff of romances. Nor could Albert have pretended to be a poor peasant whom Victoria had married anyway!    

There are courtship stories and they end in proposal or wedding. And there are marriage stories where the courtship is only a prelude.

Hope that Victoria ceases to be a silly arrogant girl and becames a sensible adult woman who realizies her duties.

On ‎7‎.‎2‎.‎2017 at 4:52 PM, seacliffsal said:

Well, I had a slightly different reaction to this episode-I thought it was just really boring with the exception of the wedding and Lord M's goodbye.  One of my issues with the 'downstairs' staff is that they are rarely working.  In Downton Abbey, the staff was very busy most of the time.  This staff just seems like they have nothing to do but wait around the table.  The dresser especially would have been busy with Victoria's dress changes,  mendings, etc.  

As for Alfred's "I have to have meaning in my life"  well, that's the choice you made in marrying the QUEEN.  If he wanted more of a role, he could have married someone else.  It all seems to be about greed to me-I need an allowance so I can buy my own snuff...get over yourself.  And, those were quite generous allowances!

 

On ‎7‎.‎2‎.‎2017 at 6:39 PM, taurusrose said:

I disagree with your view of Albert.  Not many people want to sit around doing nothing when they feel they have contributions to make.  I think most people want their lives to have some kind of meaning; marrying a queen doesn't take away your identity as a person nor should it.  Not to mention, men (then and now) aren't used to not having any authority over their lives, or earning a living and having their own money among many other things. I didn't see greed as the motivator behind Albert's request, just the desire to be somewhat independent.  If you think Albert is unhappy on this score, you should check out Prince Philip in The Crown.  

I agree with Taurusrode. As a queen's husband Albert couldn't work for living, so he had to have an allowance. They can't have a happy marriage if Albert must ask from Victoria money in order to buy a horse - or even a gift to his wife.    

That Albert wanted to marry Victoria, doesn't mean that he would have to become only a husband and father of her children.  How could a woman respect such a man who has nothing to do?

The same principles should of course apply to a wife.  

BTV, if Albert had married "an ordinary woman", wouldn't her fortune have become his or at least it would have been he who would have decided how to use it? But that doesn't apply to Victoria?

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On 2/25/2017 at 9:10 PM, ennui said:

It's popular in many ways. Pick a gemstone and search for a diamond halo setting. Fairly common.

Coming in late to this, but Fergie's was a ruby with a halo. So pretty common.

Edited by Atlanta.
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So Victoria created the tradition of white wedding dress, and the tiered wedding cake, and Ernst/Albert created the bachelor party.

When Victoria was trying to get Albert's allowance, Parliament should have cut Leopold's.

For all the inclusion of Lord M telling Victoria not to include "obey" to Albert, and she did, there was no fallout or side-eyes.

And while it was a big deal, it sure seemed the wedding was very low-key to the public.

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