Fans of PBS Masterpiece’s Victoria can look forward to new faces, more drama and more intrigue in Season 3, Daisy Goodwin, creator, writer and EP said at TCA. They can also rest assured that Prince Albert (Tom Hughes) will remain on the scene for quite some time yet.
“It starts in 1848,” Goodwin said of the new season. “It’s the closest Britain got to a revolution in the 19th century. The whole of Europe is falling apart. The French king has been thrown off the throne….there are riots in Berlin and Victoria and Albert are terrified.”
With Prince Albert’s famed Great Exhibition of 1851 approaching, “I think we can safely say we’re not going to lose Albert in this series.” Goodwin said. “It’s a really interesting time because Victoria just wants the love of her people. She’s almost like a child star who’s grown up with this affection and love, and when it’s withdrawn she’s empty and she doesn’t know what she’s for. But Albert thinks to be monarch is not necessarily to give people what they want, but what they need.”
There will be also a new character in the form of Victoria’s sister Feodora, played by Kate Fleetwood (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Star Wars: The Force Awakens). “Most people don’t know that Victoria had a sister,” Goodwin said. Feodora will create tension in the Royal household when she comes to visit, having been married off to a penniless German Prince. “There she is, living in a crumbly, draughty castle in the middle of Germany and she’s having a miserable time. And there’s Victoria being Queen of England. It doesn’t go down so well.”
Not all reaction to Goodwin’s work has been positive. The UK press reacted with venom to Goodwin’s storyline of Victoria’s crush on Prime Minister Lord Melbourne (Rufus Sewell).
“But they haven’t read her diaries,” she said. “For three years he’s on every single page. It’s just endless. They are the record of a teenage crush, but because the British don’t like to think of their Queen being in love with their Prime Minister, it’s a fairly verboten thought. Admittedly he probably wasn’t as good looking as Rufus Sewell,” Goodwin laughed, “but he was a charming man.”
Fortunately, viewers have been mollified by the great love story between Victoria and Albert. As to why she thought their relationship stood the test of time, Goodwin joked, “You could say he died at 42, so there was no time for the rot to set in.” But, she posited, it could have been slightly more romantic than that. “I think Victoria just fancied the pants off him, as they say in England.”