ENTERTAINMENT

'Victoria' Season 2 Spoilers: What To Expect From The Return Of ITV's Royal Drama

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23/08/2017 15:13 BST | Updated 23/08/2017 16:13 BST

OK, so first off, does it even technically count as a spoiler when it’s a historical drama about one of the country’s most famous monarchs?

Secondly… ‘Victoria’ is back, everyone. The second series of the hit royal drama debuts on ITV this Sunday (27 August), with Jenna Coleman returning once again for eight new episodes as the titular Queen Victoria.

Here’s everything you can expect to see in the new series...

ITV
Jenna Coleman as the young Victoria

Where do we pick up?

The new series begins one month after last year’s series finale, which saw Queen Victoria giving birth to her eldest daughter, Victoria.

Show creator Daisy Goodwin says: “They have just had their first baby and they are adjusting to shock of parenthood. Victoria finds it hard to juggle marriage, motherhood and her job: being Queen.”

The first episode of the new series will conclude with the Princess’s Christening, which throws up some conflict for the monarch when Prince Albert’s family arrive on the scene.

How has Victoria changed?

Since we last saw her, Victoria has been resting up after the birth of her daughter, but as anyone who watched the first series will tell you, taking it easy is not something the royal is particularly good at.

Jenna Coleman says: “She has been in confinement for since the birth of her child, which means she is told she can’t do anything for herself. She has to lie horizontally whilst she is pretty much treated like a child. As you can imagine, this means that she is not in the best of tempers.”

ITV
Victoria and Albert at their daughter's Christening

What about her relationship with Albert?

Well, what’s more, while she’s out of action, Albert has taken over a lot of her royal duties, which takes its own particular toll on their marriage.

In fact, Jenna says this shift in dynamics is one of the key themes of the new series overall, adding: “He is a workaholic and Victoria is threatened and initially resents any attempt to take away any of her power. You have to remember how long she has striven to be independent.

“It is a complex dynamic and creates a thunderous clash of wills.”

Show creator Daisy Goodwin also comments of their “volatile” union: “I think of them as the Taylor and Burton of the nineteenth century - tears, tantrums, and fabulous jewels!”

What problems does she face?

As Daisy Goodwin points out, a lot of the themes explored in series two are fairly “modern”, as Queen Victoria tries to balance having a family life with the job that she loves so much.

Later in the series, Jenna says her character has her “honeymoon period… interrupted by various pregnancies”, which she points out takes its toll on Victoria.

“It is a really interesting story, that second pregnancy, she says, “Although a beautiful thing, it is not a choice for Victoria and not what she wants. She feels imprisoned by it after only just finding her independence.

“It’s something I have never seen on screen before and a really interesting route to go down - a woman who loves and adores her husband   but also loves her job and doesn’t necessarily want to be pregnant.

“I think there is a misconception that she wasn’t very tender and motherly towards [her children], but it was just that being pregnant was a great, great misery for her, and frankly deeply resented.”

Which historical moments will be covered?

It’s not just the Queen’s personal life that gets put under the microscope in the second series of ‘Victoria’, with both the Irish Famine and the Repeal of the Corn Laws being portrayed over the eight episodes.

Discussing how this will resonate with viewers in 2017, Daisy says: “I thought his story would be a good way to illustrate the terrible way in which the Irish were treated by the British government.

“Writing about the repeal of the Corn Laws feels all the more relevant just as we go into the Brexit negotiations. In 1846, free trade seemed the progressive way forward, now not so much.”

ITV
Dame Diana Rigg joins the show

Is anyone new joining the cast?

Dame Diana Rigg is probably the most prominent new addition, playing Victoria’s new Mistress of the Robes, with guest appearances to come from stars including Emerald Fennell, Martin Compston, Leo Suter, Bruno Wolkowitch and Denis Lawson.

‘Victoria’ series two kicks off on Sunday (27 August) at 9.05pm on ITV. Watch the trailer below:

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