The Princess Royal Season 3 Episode 3 - The Queen Mother

The Princess Royal Season 3, Episode 3
The Queen Mother

Olivia is at the Buckingham Palace for a family meeting.

Olivia: So this meeting isn’t about how I screwed up for once?

Claude: No, for possibly the first time, I called it because things are going well.

Ethan: I can’t lie, it is a letdown to know he won’t be giving any of us that look and that speech he gives when he’s disappointed in one of us.

Todd: Usually mum.

Olivia: Not always! I’m not the only one in this family who can’t be tames, say Claire?

Claire: Oh, please leave me out of this discussion.

Olivia: It’s fine, no one has to know you’re secretly interesting.

Arthur: Secretly?

Olivia: Come on, Artie, the missus isn’t exactly known in this family for her captivating personality.

Arthur: Come again?

Claire: She’s not wrong, dear.

Olivia: See! Even she agrees.

Claude: Well, this was supposed to be a celebratory meeting. Some of us didn’t get the memo, I suppose.

Olivia: I’ll shut up, I promise.

Selina: Couldn’t happen fast enough.

Olivia: Very funny, Elphaba!

Selina: Promises made, promises broken.

Claude: You know what? I’m just going to trek forward anyhow, they’ll shut up eventually.

Eleanor: I’m not sure that they will, but I do hope so!

Claude: Everyone, I just received a report that in the year since my coronation, it was the most productive period of work for this family ever! Ever! I wanted to congratulate you all for the hard work.

Christine: You’ve all done your party. Even you, Mandy.

Mandy: Who is Mandy?

Ethan: I think it’s time to open a dialogue about having Mandy retire.

Claude: She’s actually been quite productive lately, she’s above about half the family members who do know what year it is. Namely, you.

Ethan: I thought this was supposed to be a celebration, why are you coming after me?

Claude: You came after Mandy first.

Ethan: She doesn’t know her own name!

Christine: We’ll have to take a family vote on this issue at another juncture.

Ethan: Look at her! Do we need time to think on this one?

Eleanor: I’ll keep her alive, don’t you worry.

Ethan: I think our standards need to be a bit higher simply having a pulse.

Christine: Well, if Nathan and Alicia hadn’t decided they were only going to work part-time, we wouldn’t still need Mandy. Alas…

Olivia: Didn’t you say it was the most productive year we’ve ever had? I think we can give the old girl a break, even if two of our youngest members are going to slack off.

Claude: You’re right. Mandy, if you don’t want to keep working, you don’t have to.

Mandy: I’m fit as a fiddle, what are you talking about? Forty is no age to retire!

Claude: You heard her!

Ethan: Okay, clearly I’m the only one concerned by this, let’s move on.

Olivia: Ah, good, I can talk about how great I am.

Ethan: I didn’t say we should do that.

Olivia: The point of this meeting is to celebrate productivity. No one’s been more productive than me! I know that as a fact.

Claude: She is correct, Olivia is by far the most active member of the family.

Christine: Must be her attempt to make up for the twenty years she was gone.

Olivia: You leave your family for decades ONE time, they never let you live it down.

Gigi: Yeah, I think mum’s more than made up for that lapse in judgment. She works harder for this family than anyone I know.

Arthur: With all due respect to my dear cousin… you’re not a working royal yourself, I don’t know if you get to be the judge of whether she’s made up for it.

Todd: Yeah, Gigi, stay out of it.

Gigi: You’re not a working royal, either!

Selina: This was supposed to be a meeting for the working members of the family, why are either of Olivia’s offspring here?

Gigi: Hey, Olivia’s offspring have names!

Todd: We’re not just here to look pretty, we also add to the conversation. We’ve earned the respect.

Claude: Well, this was meant to be a celebration of the good work we’ve done. It’s turned into… actually, I’m not sure how one accurately describes what it’s turned into.

Olivia: Chaos.

Christine: Thanks to you!

Olivia: Hey, Ethan’s the one who insinuated that Mandy’s losing her mind!

Ethan: She is!

Olivia: It’s not polite to call it out!

Claire: If I may -

Olivia: You may not!

Claire: Very well, then. You don’t care, I won’t share.

Claude: Does anyone have anything important to share before I dismiss this meeting and go lie down in bed contemplating the meaning of life?

Ethan: I think I’m good.

Christine: Me as well.

Claire: I’ve been barred from speaking, Your Majesty.

Olivia: Take a look around you, Claude. Does this look like a room full of people with important things to say? I think the main thing on most of our minds is “Wow, what was Christine thinking picking out that leopard number she’s got on?”

Christine: It is fashionable!

Olivia: You look like you live in New Jersey.

Eleanor: Could we all stop the fighting? I don’t get how even our celebrations turn sour.

Christine: Olivia.

Olivia: That’s my name, don’t wear it out.

Mandy: Yeah, we have a lot to celebrate! The new Bowie record is coming out today, I love that little space man!

Arthur: Who’s going to tell her?

Olivia: Not me! I’m on my way out of here, explaining the death of a beloved British cultural figure to Mandy is going to take the entire afternoon.

Eleanor: You’re going so soon?

Olivia: I have a husband back at home and it’s more than two hours away, I’ve no time to waste.

Christine: This is why we repeatedly remind you of the London residence that you are welcome to utilize.

Olivia: Fred is a country guy, he’s not a big fan of the city. I feel similarly, I much prefer the quiet life to the busy city.

Arthur: You prefer the quiet and yet you chose to return to this family?

Olivia: My love for you all is just that strong. Now, I’d better get going to beat the traffic.

Christine: Is there a lot of traffic on the way to Gloucestershire on a Sunday afternoon?

Olivia: It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Eleanor: Livie, may I ask you something before you go?

Olivia: Livie? Since when do you find nicknames socially acceptable?

Ethan: When she wants something.

Eleanor: That’s unfair!

Olivia: So you don’t want anything?

Eleanor: I didn’t say that.

Olivia: What is it, then?

Eleanor: You have a busy schedule tomorrow, no?

Olivia: I always do.

Eleanor: I want to accompany you. We never get to spend any time together.

Claire: Aww, that’s sweet.

Ethan: Do you think maybe Olivia likes it that way?

Eleanor: Bud out!

Ethan: I’m just saying, she’s had plenty of opportunity to spend more time with you, maybe she likes to keep a bit of a distance. Anthony certainly does, and you never have a problem with that.

Eleanor: I love your brother, but our relationship is different, and I’ve come to accept that. He lives in his own world, separate from ours. Now, Olivia, she’s part of our world.

Arthur: Did gran just quote The Little Mermaid?

Claire: That’s “Part of Your World.” What, I have three kids under the age of seven, I’ve seen The Little Mermaid. Both versions. Many dozen times.

Gigi: You have a Disney+ subscription or are you old school and have DVDs?

Claire: Disney+.

Gigi: Can you try to teach my mum how to use it? I keep trying t-

Olivia: Okay, I’m going to get going. This has been lovely, I’ll see you all soon enough.

Eleanor: You never answered me!

Arthur: She doesn’t seem to want to.

Olivia: Mum, as much as I’d love to spend all day tomorrow making sure my ninety year-old mother doesn’t break a hip because she stepped on unleveled cobblestone, I don’t think it’s feasible. None of my scheduled morning stops are in London, they’re all a ways away. I’d be going well out of my way just to pick you up.

Eleanor: You can take me home with you tonight! I’ll grab my things and be right down!

Olivia: Ah, that’s an idea.

Claude: A great one!

Christine: Keep her as long as you want, just don’t tucker her out too much or her body will shut down entirely and she will die.

Olivia: I never s-

Eleanor: This is going to be so much fun, dearie! We’re going to get so much closer.

Claude: That you are!

Later that night, at Olivia’s…

Fred: Wow, honey, you’re home early!

Eleanor: Now, I know I’m no longer the Queen, but I don’t think it’s appropriate to call your mother-in-law “honey.”

Fred: Your Majesty, what are you doing here?

Eleanor: Come on, Frederick, no need to be so formal. We’re family!

Fred: If we are family, then I’m sure you’ll have no trouble telling me why you’re here and my wife is not. Family tells one another the truth.

Eleanor: Olivia’s just in the car grabbing a few of my bags.

Fred: Your bags?

Olivia: Oh, yeah, mum will be staying with us tonight.

Fred: She is? Why?

Olivia: Don’t sound so negative about it!

Fred: I’m just not sure why she would want to stay here of all places, it’s a bit out of the way. Not to mention, her place is much nicer.

Olivia: Are you saying I don’t keep an appealing home?

Fred: It isn’t Buckingham Palace.

Olivia: Buckingham isn’t as nice as people think. Very outdated and old.

Eleanor: Hey!

Olivia: In a good way.

Fred: Did she get in a fight with Claude? Did you insert yourself in the middle of it? That’s not g-

Eleanor: I just wanted to spend time with my daughter. Is that so wrong?

Olivia: Yeah, Fred, is that so wrong?

Fred: I actually think that’s great, I don’t know why you all danced around telling me for so long though.

Olivia: It was a long drive, we’re tired.

Eleanor: We’ve got a long day ahead of ourselves tomorrow, too. I think I’ll head up and take a bath before dinner so I can unwind for a bit before bed.

Olivia: All right, sounds like a plan. The bathroom is -

Eleanor: Dear, I’m old, but not senile. I remember where your bathroom is.

Olivia: I had to make sure! It’s been a long time since you’ve visited.

Eleanor: Is that my suitcase? I’ll take it to the guest room if you don’t mind.

Fred: Are you sure you don’t want me to carry that for you?

Eleanor: I’m capable of dragging my suitcase down a hallway, don’t worry about me.

Fred: Feel free to make yourself at home, then.

Eleanor: I appreciate it!

Eleanor walks down the hallway. 

Fred: What the hell is this about?

Olivia: You think I know? She surprised me with this on my way out the door. I couldn’t say no to my mother!

Fred: Since when does she like spending time with you?

Olivia: It’s taken me by surprise as well.

Fred: She said something about having a long day tomorrow, what’s that about?

Olivia: Apparently, she’s going with me tomorrow while I perform my royal engagements.

Fred: Doesn’t she have her own?

Olivia: I’ve got no earthly idea.

Fred: You know, they say people often behave different when the end is near. Do y-

Olivia: I don’t want ton think about my mother dying, Fred.

Fred: I’m just saying! Maybe something is wrong with her. Che could be going senile or something, dementia patients are said to experience personality shifts.

Olivia: No, she’s still sharp as ever. I think she just wants to make up for lost time or something? It’s bizarre. It makes me uncomfortable.

Fred: You have a strange relationship with your mother.

Olivia: My family in general. I love them, but, you know… it feels disingenuous when we’re too close. I did sort of bail on them, why would they blindingly trust me?

Fred: So you think there’s an ulterior motive to this?

Olivia: Maybe she’s going to push me off a cliff to stop me from embarrassing the family. It’s not a terrible plan.

Fred: She’s ninety.

Olivia: The woman’s stronger than she looks. She’s built Ford tough.

Fred: Since when do you know the Ford slogan?

Olivia: I like cars! I was home with you twenty years, I’d have to be totally ignorant not to pick up on anything.

Fred: Well… you are well known for getting caught up in your own world.

Olivia: Are you calling me ignorant?

Fred: Please, honey, let’s not fight with your mother here.

Olivia: You’ve somehow managed to make me look forward to being stuck with her and Midge all day.

Fred: That’s cold.

The next day…

Midge: Your majesty, I think it’s truly commendable that you want to spend this time with your daughter. 

Eleanor: I’ve haven’t seen her in action in some time, and I’ve been told she’s quite good at working the crowds. I had to see for myself.

Midge: She’s great whenever she’s properly briefed on the assignment. When she goes off script, she tends to freak people out a bit.

Olivia: When do I freak people out?

Midge: Almost any time you meet a reporter you aren’t prepared to talk to.

Olivia: You act like I scream in their faces or something.

Eleanor: Do you?

Olivia: No! I simply make it known that I take no nonsense. I won’t answer inappropriate questions and if you ask them, I will walk away.

Midge: She’s very strong-willed.

Eleanor: I think that’s great. Now, 3what’s up on the docket first? Visiting sick children at a hospital, meeting with the managers of a charity…?

Olivia: We’re meeting with sanitation workers.

Eleanor: Excuse me?

Midge: It’s not as rough as it sounds.

Olivia: Yeah, Midge would never book me such a trashy gig.

Midge: I don’t “book” any “gigs,” I’m not the manager of a pop star.

Olivia: I’m the kids’ second-favorite Olivia, I may as well be a pop star.

Eleanor: The kids still listen to Olivia Newton-John?

Olivia: For the sake of simplicity, we’ll say that.

Eleanor: So how far do we have to drive yet until we meet with the garbage people?

Olivia: I don’t think they like to be called that.

Midge: We half a half hour.

Olivia: A half hour of talkative fun!

Four hours later…

Olivia: I have to be honest with you, mum. I’ve had fun with you today.

Eleanor: Did you not think you would?

Olivia: Did you, at seventy, want your mother to accompany you to work?

Eleanor: You raise a good point. For what it’s worth, I’ve enjoyed today as well. That Midge, though… she’s a handful.

Olivia: Is she not the most obnoxious person you’ve ever met?

Eleanor: She seems nice enough, but she’s so critical. It’s like having the fun police with us.

Olivia: It’s exhausting. I don’t even get to be mean to the press anymore like I used to. I just have to fake a smile, spit out a nicety, and then stroll off. If not, I get yelled at. It’s dreadful.

Eleanor: Well.. she’s in the bathroom now.

Olivia: That gets us a whole five minutes.

Eleanor: We can always drive off without her.

Olivia: You’re suggesting we abandon her in Essex?

Eleanor: It’s cruel, but fitting.

Olivia: You really want to do this?

Eleanor: What could be more fun?

Olivia: All right, let’s just calmly walk out of here and -

Eleanor: She’s coming!

Olivia: Run for it!

Olivia and Eleanor jump in the car as Midge turns the corner. 

Midge: Your Royal Highness! Your Majesty! This is extremely ill-advised! Ah, who am I kidding, they don’t care.

In the car…

Olivia: Mum, I didn’t realize you were so wild! Or so fun!

Eleanor: It’s time for me to confess something to you now, dear.

Olivia: Are you dying?

Eleanor: Probably soon enough, just due to my age, but no, not that I’m aware of.

Olivia: That was a downer of an answer.

Eleanor: I’m a realist. That’s why I have to tell you the real reason I wanted to come with you today. I miss royal engagements.

Olivia: Miss them? You were the Queen! Do the people just stop letting you show up places once you step down?

Eleanor: Claude has forced me into retirement.

Olivia: But not Mandy? The woman is basically dead!

Eleanor: It comes from a place of concern. Your brother sincerely believes that I’ll live longer if I rest and don’t overwork myself. I disagree.

Olivia: He’s so bossy.

Eleanor: I should’ve had you first.

Olivia: He still would’ve become king, that damn patriarchy!

Eleanor: These are the first royal engagements I’ve taken part in in over six months.

Olivia: You really miss it?

Eleanor: It gave me purpose. You’ve given me a renewed purpose today, in fact.

Olivia: Do you think we’re far enough away for Midge to not catch up on foot?

Eleanor: I’dd say so.

Olivia: I’m pulling over. I have a phone call to make!

Eleanor: Oh, don’t do th-

Olivia calls Claude.

Claude: Is she driving you batty already? It’s half past one!

Olivia: You forced our mother into retirement?

Claude: Oh no, I should’ve known this was about that.

Olivia: She’s depressed. So depressed, she wanted to hang out with me!

Eleanor: I love you dearly, I don’t need to be depressed to want to spend time with you!

Olivia: Mum, hush!

Claude: She worked herself too hard, it was taking a toll on her. I had ton step in.

Olivia: You decided on your own? You made the family vote when I wanted to change my hair dye! And they voted against it!

Claude: Imagine how the public would react if you’d become a ginger!

Olivia: I thought I’d look cute, like Ron from Harry Potter!

Claude: You wouldn’t have!

Olivia: Just let mum perform royal engagements again. She’s been great today!

Claude: Mum, did you put her up to this?

Eleanor: I begged her not to do it!

Claude: So this is your genuine belief?

Olivia: I tell it how it is.

Claude: Mum, would a limit of two days of work per week work for you?

Eleanor: Done!

Claude: Wow, I was expecting a negotiation here.

Eleanor: Anything is better than nothing, just let me go back out to meet my subjects.

Claude: My subjects.

Eleanor: Our subjects.

Olivia: Aww, look at them bonding over their shared uncurbed power.

Claude: I’ll let you two go, then, I’m getting a call from Midge. Who… is with you, no?

Olivia: Gotta go, Claude! By the way, don’t answer that! The woman’s a liar!

Olivia hangs up. 

Eleanor: Olivia! Thank you for helping me!

Olivia: You deserve happiness, mum. I’d do anything to help you, even suck up to Claude.

Eleanor: Don’t tell anyone, but you’re my favorite!

Olivia: Oh, I will be telling many people.

What did you think of this episode of The Princess Royal? Let us know in the comments and make sure to read the next episode next week!

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