The Royals Season 1, Episode 9 recap

Status Check: Ted is still not fired.

How?! How is Ted not fired?! At one point Cyrus, now the “acting King of England” (THAT IS STILL NOT A REAL THING!), actually says, “I can’t wait to fire you,” to Ted, and I legit screamed at my television. Why are you waiting, Cyrus?! You have the leadership stick—why can’t you just f*cking FIRE TED? Everyone acts like firing Ted is some impossible task that can only be carried out by royal decree, except EVERYONE IS A ROYAL WHO COULD DECREE IT. I do not understand why no one can fire Ted. Is this show taking place in the Divergent universe where once you’re assigned a job, that’s your job for life? That’s the only possible explanation.

King Simon remains in a coma following being stabbed because Ted is so f*cking awful at his job, and with Liam taken out of the line of succession because he, and by extension Eleanor, is illegitimate, Cyrus is now in charge. This means lots of Cyrus skulking around hallways and threatening people, because no one on this show has any goddamned better thing to do than make idle threats to one another. The search is on for a mysterious be-hoodied figure who was caught on camera lingering in front of the palace’s gates—Ted is so terrible at his job no one noticed the ominous figure staring with open hatred at the palace for hours at a time over several days. Marcus, of course, figures out everything about the man in five seconds flat, then manages to go out and pull both Ophelia and Liam together because he’s the only reasonable person on this show.

Except Ophelia and Liam are fully committed to their limp noodles act, which means they both keep being limp noodles. Despite Marcus offering sound advice to both of them, neither of them listens and they mope around the entire episode. Ophelia blows off her chance to go dance in New York in order to search for Liam, who is MIA in the wake of the revelation that he is not Simon’s legitimate son. Being Ted’s child, Ophelia’s search prowess is limited to checking only one avenue of inquiry, then promptly giving up and moping for the rest of the hour. She is utterly, completely, without possibility of redemption, the most useless person on this show. Liam, meanwhile, spends the episode drunk in a pub talking to a hallucination of Simon.

There are all kinds of machinations in play. Cyrus is trying to consolidate power, but Helena keeps working against him. She meets with the anti-royalist guy and offers to help him dismantle the monarchy if only he’ll back her play to be named queen regent if/when Cyrus should die. To ensure his cooperation she trots out Cyrus’s twatty daughters, Slop and Bucket (I can’t remember their names), who are dressed in ludicrous costumes that look like Vivienne Westwood and a circus threw up on them. Helena tells anti-royalist guy that he’ll go down in history as the “architect of everything that follows”, which ought to sound the alarms as she’s basically saying, “Buddy, I’m about to screw you over but good.”

Eleanor actually has a little bit of an adventure this episode, right at the end. She spends her time talking to her unconscious father and also chatting with a hallucination of him—twin-brain with Liam, I guess—and also threatening her mother and Cyrus. Helena reveals that Robert didn’t die in an accident but that he killed himself, only Mr. Mysterious Hoodie shows up at the end with instructions for Eleanor and he says Robert was, in fact, murdered. I’m starting to think that Robert is actually alive and his death and all the rest of it is an elaborate plot between him and Eleanor to destroy the monarchy. I bet Robert is the person Helena keeps talking to on the phone. It’s the perfect sh*tshow twist to this sh*tshow soap opera.

(Lainey: attaching photos of Joan Collins because there hasn’t been enough of her on this goddamn show. Also…SHE’s WITH JACKIE. Which, basically, is an automatic post.)