Friday, June 01, 2012
How do you prefer your queen;English or Evil?
An interesting convergence of royals is taking place this weekend,as the second Snow White film of the year,Snow White and the Huntsman,debuts at theaters and over in England,they're about to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth,who has reigned for sixty years in good times and bad.
No matter how you feel about any sort of monarchy,fictional or otherwise,the appeal of being a queen holds a powerful fascination upon our imaginations
and an indelible part of our pop culture realm. With that in mind,let us look over a few prime examples from both sides of the regal coin and then decide
which type of queen intrigues you the most,English or Evil:
FURY UNDER FIRE
One of the hazards of wearing a crown is facing invading armies lead by those eager to take that shiny headgear off of you. Some bear the situation better than others,even if they're not allowed to enter the fray directly.
On Game of Thrones, Cersei Lannister-Baratheon of Westeros would rather be out in the streets with a sword in hand but instead,must stay inside the Red Keep with the ladies of the court,awaiting word of their fate. Her tactic in handling this situation is to drink as much wine as she can,while giving out some less than encouraging advice to Sansa,the intended bride of her twisted son Joffrey.
While one could understand some of Cersei's complaints,her gleefully gruesome pronouncements about what lies in store for the women if the men can't keep the enemy out of the city drains away a lot of that sympathy:
When real life Elizabeth the first had to deal with the Spanish Armada threatening to hit her shores,she was able to take charge and manage things more on her own.
She did make a rousing speech to her troops,as depicted in the 1998 film Elizabeth:The Golden Age,although the actual words she spoke to them are some what in dispute. Nevertheless,Elizabeth's presence at the front was considered to be quite inspiring:
While Elizabeth I never took a husband,that didn't mean she disdained all men. However,none of those dalliances got in the way of running the kingdom or making plans against her enemies.
In an Errol Flynn classic,The Sea Hawk,she is seen as headstrong when plotting to outwit Spain but even Elizabeth was not immune to the charms of Flynn's rascally character. Granted,he did have a cute little monkey on hand to help soften her up:
Of course,tempting a man to go along with her plans has always been a key tool in any evil queen's kit.
Even the likes of the Borg Queen in Star Trek:First Contact had plenty of womanly wiles on hand to appease the cool logic of Data in order to claim the security codes needed to fully take over the ship.
Data did offer up some resistance but she had home field advantage in a sense,particularly with that memorable entrance of hers.When it comes to seduction,cyber chicks are not without game,especially for the geeks:
From Elizabeth's day,we jump to Queen Victoria for whom an entire era was named after. While she maintained a reputation for strict propriety not only
for herself but those around,the lady did possess very passionate feelings yet learned early on to keep them closed off from others.
One passion she did have was for her husband Albert,who understood her struggles to figure out who to trust all too well. Many scenes in the film The Young Victoria showcase their relationship nicely but their opening dance at her coronation ball speaks volumes without saying a word:
Not every dancing queen is safe to waltz with, such as the undead patrons of a vampire bar found out in Queen of the Damned when "the mother of all vampires" paid them a visit.
Queen Akasha was seeking her dark prince Lestat and became rather displeased when the bartender informed her of the plan to do him in. Instead of taking a moment to calmly consider her options,Akasha quickly took matters into her own hands,along with a few hearts:
So,English or Evil-it's a hard choice indeed. Perhaps having a bit of both at the proper times is what's best.
As for this weekend,most of the ceremonies for the Queen of England's Diamond Jubilee will be televised,so if you can go out to the movies for Snow White and the Huntsman,chances are that a replay of the events will be easy to find.
Royal ladies may appear to have the ultimate good life,yet if you look past the glittering jewels,massive castles and mandatory bowing from all and sundry,they have a pretty hard row to hoe there.
Even a queen without any major responsibilities regarding the welfare of her realm has to adjust to the winds of change or be removed from her throne(even if it's metaphorically speaking).
I suppose that is why queens,whether based on real people or not,are going to continue to be influential figures in the pop culture world for ages to come,no matter how modern they may get:
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