One is Amused: The New Adventures of Queen Victoria

By Pab Sungenis

Ray Davies of The Kinks often dutifully crooned, “Long ago life was clean Sex was bad and obscene And the rich were so mean / Stately homes for the Lords Croquet lawns, village greens Victoria was my queen…” And rightly so. There was something particularly exalted about Her Majesty Victoria, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland Queen, Defender of the Faith, Empress of India [1].

One cannot rule a nation for nearly sixty-four years without without causing quite a fuss. Although the prim, sexually repressed, and class, sex, race, et cetera-ist days of the Victorian era are long past, we still romanticize and coo over the lacy doilies, silken stove top hats, and ambrosial tea services upon the mosaic terraces of profitable country estates associated with the times of Old Vicky. (Never mind the  languishing street urchins, heinous industrial smog, and rampant Typhoid.) The past — British Heritage and aristocracy à la  Downton Abbey in particular —  still proves to be a popular commodity with today’s pedestrian masses.

With dandyish wit, American actor, writer and now comic strip artist Pab Sungenis recalls the prissiness favoured by Victoria Regina with a budding cartooned project titled The New Adventures of Queen Victoria. According to Sungenis, the comic began almost by chance. In early 2006, he was mulling over some fuzzy ideas for comic strips which he could create using  digital photo-manipulation, for, in his own words, his drawing ability is on a par with a mentally challenged rhinoceros on a Nyquil bender [2].

Her Majesty appears in the assemblage serialised narrative in full, aged pomp — prone to arguing nonsensically with cats, and corpulent from decades of indulging in slabs of roast beef and cloying ice cream. She behaves in her notoriously prudish and bossy manner, offering witticisms and advice on how to be certain your servants will keep your white linens looking bright. Yet Queen Victoria also demonstrates a considerably less august sense of humour.

Joined by Queen Elizabeth I, bedecked with gum ball sized pearls and nagging bad habits, Her Majesty gets entangled in many modern exploits indeed. Speed dating, for instance.

A wary Victoria hurriedly seeks a new prospective mate amongst plush velvet seats, encouraged heartily by the died-a-virgin-queen Elizabeth. The royal duo encounter roguish Italian gamblers, top-hatted fops, and sissies wearing curling wigs. Abysmally, the prime candidate proves to be an  obscene-looking, cross-eyed buffoon. “It’s all right,” soothes Elizabeth. These things are about quantity over quality, anyway. Much like meals taken in plastic-tableclothed, conveyor-belt style buffet restaurants.

The pair also get tippled during Quiz Night at the local pub, managed by Elizabeth’s axe-happy father, and attend a steamy all-male revue, starring the brawny super stud, Bertram.

Check out some of Queen Victoria’s latter-day mishaps and run-ins below, and be sure to keep abreast of her latest off-colour escapades here.

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References:

[1] Whitaker’s Almanack (1900) Facsimile Reprint 1998, London: Stationery Office, p. 86

[2]  The New Adventures of Queen Victoria Official Website, About 

 

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