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Parenthood Support Group

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[S4E7] Big Trouble In The Big Apple

The season opens in 1979 and while we see the queen in all of her regal pomp and circumstance during the Trooping the Colour, England itself is in turmoil. The economy is in shambles and the Troubles which have been roiling Northern Ireland for years are about to exact a very bloody price on the royal family. But currently, the family's more quotidian concern is Prince Charles's troubled romantic life. After they helped dash his romance with Camilla last season by engineering her marriage, the Prince of Wales can't seem to find the right woman to be his princess.

[S4E7] Big Trouble in the Big Apple

But as the two women talk about Thatcher's incoming cabinet during their first meeting at Buckingham Palace, it's obvious that this won't be a great meeting of feminist minds. The ruthless Thatcher, despite her own achievements, thinks women are too emotional for leadership, and Elizabeth, who has been on the throne for decades at this point, takes slight umbrage and points out that Thatcher won't have that trouble with her. Thatcher thinks that they might work well together but it's going to be a bumpier path than either realizes at this point.

As the family arrives at Balmoral Castle for the summer holiday, they're distracted by the trials of the various royal children and don't realize that they will soon be engulfed in a great national tragedy. Prince Philip tries to help his favorite child, Anne (Erin Doherty, delightfully dagger-sharp), through both her problems as an Olympic-level equestrian and her troubled marriage. Menzies and Doherty remain delightful to watch together as they peel back the layers on the cuttingly sarcastic Philip and Anne to reveal the caring father-daughter relationship beneath.

Some days later, Thatcher comes to see the queen. When Queen Elizabeth makes the point that Fagan is not entirely to blame for his actions, the prime minister is far from sympathetic towards the troubled man. The queen tries to make the point that his desperation was caused by his unemployment and that in turn motivated his reckless behavior, but Thatcher keeps on her schtick about unemployment only being temporary and the need to turn the country around by abandoning outdated notions of collective duty. Really big sigh. The PM goes on to dismiss Fagan as mentally unwell and excuses herself to attend a victory parade for the success in the Falkland Islands. Maybe Fagan wasn't so far off when he suggested Thatcher was after the queen's job after all. 041b061a72


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