Series three of Victoria is expected to explore the tensions in the bedroom between Jenna Coleman’s Queen and Tom Hughes’ Albert, with the Queen increasingly resenting the fact that he husband is constantly making her pregnant.
Writer Daisy Goodwin has revealed that she is planning to depict suggestions that the Queen may have withheld sex from her spouse in order to avoid constantly finding herself pregnant.
“She has six children in eight years – which is a lot – and there are some gaps, so I wonder whether there may have been some withholding [of sex] on both sides; that’s certainly something I’m going to explore in series three,” Goodwin revealed at the launch of the series 2 DVD.
“There’s also a suggestion in a letter Albert writes to her… basically they thought that every time she was pregnant she went a bit mad, so there will be a bit of that. There’s s a suggestion that she’s not in her right mind, hereditary insanity and all of that.
“She’s in this terrible double bind. She loves Albert and she loves going to bed with Albert. But every time he goes near her she gets pregnant. Obviously that suits him more than it suits her.”
Goodwin continues, “When she’s pregnant he takes over her work. He’s the best maternity cover you can have – he’s rather too good at it. She feels rather displaced, [wondering] ‘who am I?’ She doesn’t like the discomfort about being pregnant.”
In the final shot of series two the couple had three children. By the end of the Christmas special she will have five children, Goodwin has already indicated. In total the Queen had nine children over a 17-year period.
Goodwin added: “I think she resented very much having a baby so quickly after getting married.
“I think she just wanted to have some time to be married and have an extended honeymoon and basically enjoy her husband – who she clearly fancies the pants off. Not only does she have one baby, but she has a baby literally within seconds.”
Goodwin noted that the real-life Queen refers to “disgusting” babies in her diaries but also wrote lovingly about her children – a sign of her “complicated” psychological make-up.
“I don’t think it’s true that she hated her children; she hated the loss of dignity I think. Because if you’re Queen and used to being in control of everything, there’s a biological imperative you can’t do anything about and it must have been very hard.”
Goodwin added that she also believed Victoria and Albert had pre-marital sex – an idea which was not explored in the drama.
“I am not really a gyanecologist but she does have the first baby almost suspiciously. I wonder whether or not they might have had a tiny bit of pre-marital sex. You heard it here first.
“I think it’s not impossible. If you look at the gap between their wedding and the birth of [their first daughter] Victoria, first babies are usually a bit late and I would say there is the possibility of it. What a scandal!”
Coleman and Hughes are going to return for series three, but Goodwin would not disclose at what point Hughes’ Prince Albert, who died in 1861, will expire in the drama.
“I don’t know whether this is going to be the series when Albert dies,” added the writer.
“I haven’t written it yet. I can tell you there will be drama and intrigue and revolutions in Europe. It starts in 1848, which was a very exciting time with revolutions in Europe.”
She added that the upcoming Christmas special will contain an “astonishing” episode which happened in real life but which she suspects viewers “won’t believe is actually true”.
Victoria season three airs on PBS Masterpiece in the US on Sundays, 9/8c
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