Royal Inquest

TV review by
Anne Louise Bannon, Common Sense Media
Royal Inquest TV Poster Image
Docu about crimes against British royals is a bit grisly.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

The show is all about people who aren't behaving appropriately, although some of the behavior is the result of mental illness.

Violence

Occasional scenes of guns going off and blood dripping. In one episode, the attempted kidnapping of Princess Anne is recounted, along with the incident in which a man managed to get inside Buckingham Palace and talk to Queen Elizabeth in her bedroom.

Sex
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Some wine drinking. Plus, drinking and drug use are among the many problems of the people being featured/investigated.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this investigative reality show is about people -- many suffering from mental illness -- who have done some very frightening things to public figures. Some episodes feature violence (guns going off, some blood), but not all do; some also reference issues like drinking and drug use. The scandals surrounding some members of the British royal family are largely glossed over, when they're mentioned at all.

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What's the story?

There's no question that a family as publicly visible as Britian's ruling clan will become a target for some pretty unsavory behavior -- whether it's servants pocketing private possessions or the mentally ill fulfilling their delusions of grandeur by planning attacks (in fact, it's almost surprising that there haven't been more incidents!). ROYAL INQUEST profiles some of these cases using a combination of archival footage/photography, re-enactments, and interviews with members of the press and occasionally even a principal in the event.

Is it any good?

Overall, the stories are interesting, even if the narration and music are occasionally a bit overwrought. But given that the British royals are the most commonly photographed and filmed people on Earth, you have to wonder why so many of the same images are used over and over. It seems awfully hard to believe that there are only four flim clips of Princess Anne from the 1970s -- and you know there were far more pictures of Princess Diana than the 12-odd shown in the episode about her butler.

Bottom line? Those who are into true crime and/or the royals may get a kick out of this somewhat voyeuristic series, but it's not likely to end up on many other folks' must-see list.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how the show's stories are told. Why are some of them so repetitive? Is it to help viewers remember details or for other reasons? Also, who do you think the show is trying to appeal to? Why are some people so fascinated with the royal family?

TV details

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