The Royals recap: The Great Man Down | EW.com

TV Recaps | The Royals

'The Great Man Down'

Liam prepares to step it up after an assignation attempt on the king, while Cyrus reveals a seriously shocking secret.

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The Royals

Season 1, Ep. 8 | Aired May 03

One of the elements of a traditional monarchy that seems particularly outdated in 2015 is the rule of succession. As King Simon pointed out in his rather elegant speech last week, the centuries-old succession rule doesn’t award the best or the brightest; instead, the privilege of wearing the crown becomes a birthright, which is a problem when pretty much everyone in your family is an idiot either by nature or drug addiction.

So, when King Simon was found stabbed outside the palace gates, guess who had the most to gain? (Clue: Cyrus, Helena and Liam.)  With that, the scene is set when the royal family—Queen Helena, Liam, Eleanor and Cyrus—are rushed into a dungeon. “He’s lost a lot of blood and it’s too soon to tell if he’ll live,” Pryce offers by way of an update to King’s health. Within seconds, Marcus brings down Ophelia to the safe room. Queen Helena raises an eyebrow at this, but Marcus says that ensuring the safety of the prince’s girlfriend is in keeping with standard protocol. (Is anyone else falling for Marcus? He always stands out as so suave and smart!)

“What does it matter whether Liam’s latest slut of the hour is here?” Cyrus asks. Way to put things in perspective.

While Eleanor is freaking out, the queen puts an icy hand on Liam’s shoulder. “Everything is different now …you are now the prince regent, you understand me?” Liam gets it, and then Helena lays it on extra thick. “You are the acting King of England,” she says. (Note that she’s wearing a fur shrug over a cream-colored sweater—it’s the closest thing to casual, comfy clothes we’ve seen her wear.)

Emotions really start running high when Liam starts beating himself over not having been with the king (remember, he was supposed to meet the king for a walk but was whooping it up with Ophelia instead), while Helena and Cyrus start questioning Pryce about why he wasn’t with the king at the time of the attack. “His Majesty and I had an understanding that I would look the other way for his occasional walk,” explains Pryce. “It’s an understanding I now regret.”

Everyone starts throwing shade about who’s responsible for the king’s attack, when Eleanor snaps back with “The only person to blame is the person who did it.”

So was it Cyrus? Or either Thing One or Thing Two, as Cyrus refers to the royal twins. He and the siblings are trading accusations about who might have actually committed the crime when Ophelia pipes up about having seen Cyrus slip out of the palace.

“Pryce, silence the only bitch you have left or I’ll do it myself,” Cyrus snarls. But Pryce doesn’t like threats, and whips out a gun to his head. It’s an utter madhouse, and surprisingly, the only one who’s calm is Helena, who looks as she’s going to find the truth in the bottom of her lip gloss tube.

Things are getting altogether too dramatic for poor Eleanor, who looks as though she’s about to have a panic attack. She begs to leave the safe room, a proposition which Pryce forbids since he still deems it unsafe. But you know, what the princess wants, the princess gets, and she’s allowed to go into the tunnels for a bit of air. Jasper—that creep—follows her.

NEXT: Eleanor takes a stand

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