CRAIG BROWN writes ‘The Crown: Part III’ – Charles, Anne, Andrew… and Prince Steve!
The Queen’s sitting room, Buckingham Palace. The Queen rings a bell.
Prince Philip: You called?
The Queen: Ah, yes. Philip. They’re saying I’m a cold and distant mother. So I have decided to set up individual meetings with my children. All three of them.
Prince Philip: Four.
The Queen: Don’t be silly. Just three — there’s Charles, the sad one, Anne, the horsey one, and Andrew, by far my favourite with his cheeky ways.
Prince Philip: There’s a fourth.
The Queen: Now, don’t tell me. James? Robert? Gary?
Prince Philip: No. Edward.
The Queen: It was on the tip of my tongue.
The Queen : Ah, yes. Philip. They’re saying I’m a cold and distant mother. So I have decided to set up individual meetings with my children. All three of them
The Queen’s private dining-room.
The Queen: I have decided to have this intimate luncheon with you, Steve.
Prince Edward: Edward.
The Queen: With you, Edward. So that we can — what’s that dreadful expression they all use nowadays? — ‘get to know one another’. So. Tell me, have you come far? How long have you been waiting? How long have you been working here?
Prince Edward: I …
The Butler: Excuse me, Your Majesty, but Mrs Thatcher has dropped round. She is eager to talk you about her government’s exciting new initiative to send more children up chimneys.
Queen: Well, er, Steve. I think we’ve just about covered everything, don’t you?
Prince Edward: I, er …
Queen: So off you pop. And do send my very best wishes to your wife and children, delete where applicable. Ah, Prime Minister! Come in! No need to kneel.
Gatcombe Park. A family picnic.
Queen: Heaven knows, I’ve tried to be a good mother, Jane.
Princess Anne: Not Jane, Anne. It’s thet Diana I blame. It’s so unfair! I do so much for this femily. But do I get a thenk you? Do I heck. It’s so unfair! And all she hes to do is put on a frock and everyone’s falling over her. It’s so unfair!
Princess Diana : Hi there! What do you all think of my lovely new frock? I hope you love it as much as I do!
Enter Princess Diana.
Princess Diana: Hi there! What do you all think of my lovely new frock? I hope you love it as much as I do! I’m planning to give Charles the most wonderful surprise by wearing it when I dance on Top Of The Pops with Pan’s People to the latest hit song by Wham! He’ll be so proud of me!
By the way, do any of you want to give me a great big hug?
Princess Margaret: Did no one ever teach you that it’s rude to say ‘hi there’? And dancing with Pan’s People on Top Of The Pops is most dreadfully common. The last member of this family to hug anyone was Anne Boleyn. And look where it got her! Where’s Ruth, Lady Fermoy when one needs her?
Ruth, Lady Fermoy pops out from behind a tree.
Princess Margaret: About time! Teach Diana a lesson, Fermoy!
Ruth, Lady Fermoy: Hold out your hand, you wretched girl, and repeat after me: ‘I, Diana, must never be common and/or emotional!’ Take that! And it’s rude to cry!
Queen Mother: Bravo, Fermoy! Anyone for a drinkie-poo?
Queen: Why, if it isn’t the Prime Minister!
Mrs Thatcher: I wanted to let you know that I’ve just sent a task force to Argentina. It should get there in no time at all. Mark’s driving!
Meg Mortimer (answering telephone): Crossroads Motel. Can I help you?
Queen: Is this a new member of staff?
Princess Diana: By the way, do any of you want to give me a great big hug?
Butler: Yes, ma’am. As you can see, she trained elsewhere. A motel on the Birmingham ring-road, I believe. She’s learning the ropes.
Enter Prince Charles.
Prince Charles: Woe, woe, and thrice woe! Why must they make it so difficult to get the lid off a simple tin of sardines? I blame my upbringing.
Princess Diana: I know how to cheer you up, Charles! I’ll put on a mauve leotard and dance to an upbeat medley from Kajagoogoo!
Prince Charles: Where is Sir Laurens van der Post when one needs him? I know for a fact that he would never DREAM of donning a mauve leotard to dance to an upbeat medley from Kajagoogoo. It’s so DEPRESSING!
Meg Mortimer: Crossroads Motel. I’m putting you through now, sir. It’s Sir Laurens van der Post for the Prince of Wales!
Princess Margaret: Oh dear. It’s so desperately common to have ‘van’ or ‘post’ in one’s surname.
Princess Anne: How could they have put us in this tosh! It’s so UNFAIR!
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