It's a wedding fit for the Royals.
In other words, The Royals Season 4 Episode 10 was the culmination of Queen Helena, Cyrus and Liam's master plan to take down Robert once and for all.
I'll be honest; there are only a handful of TV episodes that I've watched where I've felt pure anxiety throughout the whole hour. "With Mirth in Funeral and With Dirge in Marriage" shot up to the top of the list.
The fact that I was so uncertain about whether or not they could pull one over on Robert was probably telling in itself.
It's not that I didn't think they had it in them -- you HAVE to be more aware of your surroundings -- I just knew that Robert was more wicked than anyone ever imagined. They were in way over their heads.
The writers wanted you to think it all boiled down to Willow as the deciding factor.
Felicity: I don’t know what drug you slipped my daughter, but I can’t talk her out of marrying into this god forsaken whorehouse.
Queen: I believe it was LSD.
Felicity: Is that supposed to be funny?
Queen: No, just fact.
Up until the conclusion of the episode, I wasn't entirely sure for which team she was playing.
Admittedly, when Princess Eleanor informed her that Robert couldn't be trusted, I thought that she'd finally see the light.
She's been so torn between marrying for love and marrying for the throne, and then, at one point she thought she was marrying someone she loved that would also give her the throne. And then suddenly, that was also a lie.
It seemed like Willow wasn't going to allow Robert to walk all over her.
She made it a point to say she didn't care for the throne, she called Robert out on all his bullshit, she asserted herself as his equal and when she realized that he'd always think he was above her because she was "just his Queen," I assumed she meant it when she said he needed to be stopped.
The writers wanted you to be in doubt, to think Willow double-crossed them better than Robert ever could. Maybe she is an even match for the nefarious King?
During both the dream wedding and the real wedding, she looked liked she'd rather be at the Venezuelan embassy eating crisps than standing in front of the altar with Robbie.
However, when it was time for her to forgo her "I do's" and tell the whole world watching that Robert was behind the power outage, she didn't follow through.
Don’t diminish her light with your darkness. Be better than that.King Simon
That hesitation, that fear was caused by the realization that she too was in way over her head. And it wasn't with Liam or Cyrus; it was with Queen Helena and Robert.
I have two theories about what could have changed Willow's mind -- King Robert or Queen Helena.
Willow could have been ready to burn it all to the ground, but Robert threatened her or her family after his hallucinated chat with his father's ghost.
He caught up with her before the wedding, and we don't know what know what he said.
And if at any point, Willow thought everyone was in danger, she would abort the mission.
The fact that he brought in his own security detail apart from the one provided by the palace proves that Robert was suspecting something.
The other common denominator connecting everything that happened towards the latter of the episode to the overall plot is Queen Helena.
It's likely that she's been playing both teams this whole time.
The car that came to pick up Kathryn wasn't going to whisk her away to safety. The camera angles revealed she was hopping into a trap but, I anticipated we'd see Cassandra driving the car.
Who knows, maybe she is. For now, all that's been revealed is that Lucious tagged along for the ride.
I’m going back to the Embassy where it’s safe. You're all going to the gallows.Cyrus
It's been quite some time since he's made an appearance on the series, but from what I remember he served as the Queen's assistant who was, for the most part, loyal to her.
Methinks that Queen Helena never thought that Kathryn would make a good Queen, and when she realized she was back in the picture and pregnant with Liam's heir, she had to "take care of it.
Lucious wasn't the only throwback character to make an appearance. Weddings have a way of reuniting people, you know?
We've seen Cyrus chase down numerous blondes that he thought looked like Violet only to find out he was imaging it.
But this time, it was finally his presumed-to-be-dead girlfriend.
I have so many questions about this. How is she alive? Why did she fake her death? Why did she come to the wedding and risk being seen?
When Violet disappeared, Cyrus placed all the blame on Helena saying that she was jealous of her because she would have been the next Queen of England.
She didn't approve, so she got rid of her.
Then, she got wind of Liam and Cyrus' plot to overthrow Robert, and she couldn't have that so she pretended to be aligned with them so she could internally control the situation.
But from the beginning, she has respected Willow and even been impressed with her grace and charm. In other words, she believes she'd make the perfect Queen of England because she has the social grasp to influence the masses.
She always trusted Willow's instincts, and I think when she told her to find Robert a bride that he and the country could fall in love with, she was setting her grand plan into motion.
She'd made an effort to build a repertoire with her; a trust, if you will.
She tested her loyalty by drugging her right before she had to prove herself to the board.
There's also a deeper "family feud" connection that became apparent when it was revealed that Willow's mother, Felicity, was friends with Dominique Stewart, the true love of King Simon's life who was "accidentally" killed in a horse riding plot set up by Dutchy.
And that death ensured Helena would be Queen.
Seems to be like this was a plan that's been brewing for quite some time and Helena is the wicked Queen that's been in cahoots with Robert and pulling all the strings.
I can appreciate storylines from the past that have been long forgotten being weaved back in again.
If anything, it reminds me that this family's dysfunction goes way deeper than a mediocrely planned coup.
Catch up on all the scandal and watch The Royals online! I'd recommend binge-watching all the seasons in case they reveal more about those finale cliffhangers.