Funnily enough, in the episode 6 recap I almost used the King George VI quote that this title is echoing. It’s an episode revolving around Elizabeth (pride) and Margaret (joy), with a touch of the Queen Mother thrown in, as all three of then contemplate — to borrow from Margaret — “a future [they] can bear.” This is a longer recap because I wanted to get a lot of the dialogue in from the meaty fights. Forgive me my wordiness.
For me, the last episode and this one picked up quite a bit — mostly because we’re getting into the meat of the relationships now, and Elizabeth is fumbling for and finding her own agency. Philip remains totally awful and selfish, even if it’s understandable why; as much as the implied blow job at the end of episode 7 was maddening and I wanted her to smack him, I also thought it was a really effective character moment. It’s so clearly meant to depict a man who sees the tide of his life turning and sought to cling to the very oldest idea of masculinity and a woman’s place in service of her man. Elizabeth saw it as a man engaging with and desiring his wife, but Philip at least halfway viewed it as being able to make the ruler of the Commonwealth kneel to please him. It was all about power and ego, and how the lack of one means he is desperately grasping at ways to feed the other. And Elizabeth seemed willing and ready to give it because we’ve seen her on the outside of his social life looking in, and hating it, and the implication in that scene was that she simply thrilled to the idea that he might still sexualize her and see a woman and not a queen. They both needed something in that moment that said a lot about their emotional states. I mention all this because it ties into the progression: Here, we get the sense that Elizabeth is slowly becoming less malleable, to Philip or anyone else.
And the results, as they might say on a CBS promo, are explosive. Or at least a bit Dynasty.