"Doll 123" is the pilot episode of Victoria. It aired on 28th August 2016 in the UK on ITV. The episode aired feature length on ITV. It was watched by 5.4 million people beating it's rival "The BBC" 's sitcom season revamp of "Are You Being Served?" and "Porridge".
Upon the death of King William IV, his eighteen-year-old niece, Princess Alexandrina Victoria of Kent, inherits the throne as Queen, and finds herself tested by new responsibilities and conflicted loyalties.
King William IV dies and Great Britain has a new monarch in his 18 year old niece Alexandrina Victoria. We explore her life and meet her mother (who can barely speak English), The Duchess of Kent, head of house, Baroness Lehzen, dresser, Mrs Jenkins, bell boy Brodie and the horrible Sir John Conroy. Victoria meets the Prime Minister of Great Britain, Lord Melbourne (who she develops a crush on) and appoints him as her only adviser (much to the dismay of the Duchess of Kent and Sir John Conroy).
Victoria decides that if she is going to become Queen she needs a bigger home and moves to Buckingham Palace and out of her old home, Kensington Palace. She puts her mother and Lady Flora in a different wing from her (to the dismay of the latter of them) and rejects Sir John Conroy as an adviser (as she sees his true colours). Mrs Jenkins and the rest of the staff get fed up with Baroness Lehzen, because of her bossiness. Then Miss Skerett is appointed to Mrs Jenkins, without the latter's approval. Victoria gets told horrible things by Lady Flora, her mother and Sir John, including the fact she is called "Mrs Melbourne" (because of her friendship with Melbourne). Lord Melbourne is fascinated by Victoria, her obsession with dolls and how she has more than 123.
At a ball Victoria dances with The Grand Duke, who is in love with her and touches her bosom, to the dismay of Victoria and then Lord Melbourne (who arrives late).
Baroness Lehzen tells Victoria that Lady Flora is pregnant with Sir John's child as when they went to Scotland they shared a carriage by themselves. Victoria confronts Sir John, who denies it. She then asks some doctors to examine Lady Flora to see if she is pregnant. Lady Flora agrees saying she will not lose her dignity.
Baroness Lehzen finds out that Mrs Jenkins was going to sell Victoria's old gloves and tells her off, but Miss Skerett takes the blame and threat of being sacked. Victoria says to sell them because she doesn't want them anymore.
Victoria has her coronation in Westminster Abbey. And afterwards the doctors go to Victoria, Lord Melbourne and Victoria's mother to say that Flora has a liver tumour and that she has only got months left to live. Victoria feels bad and apologises to a heavily ill Lady Flora (who says only god can forgive her) and her mother (who tells her off for accusing Sir John). Victoria shouts at her mother saying Sir John is not innocent of everything else and that she needs to realise it.
Lord Melbourne goes to Victoria saying the reason he was late was because it was the anniversary of his late son's birthday (who died tragically) and every year he feels he could never live again.
The Duke of Cumberland and Sir John launch a scheme to stop Victoria from being monarch.
- Jenna Coleman as Alexandrina Victoria
- Catherine Flemming as The Duchess of Kent
- Daniela Holtz as Baroness Lehzen
- Nell Hudson as Miss Skerett
- Ferdinand Kingsley as Charles Francatelli
- Tommy Knight as Brodie
- Eve Myles as Mrs Jenkins
- Paul Rhys as Sir John Conroy
- Adrian Schiller as Penge
- Peter Firth as The Duke of Cumberland and Teviotdale
- Rufus Sewell as Lord Melbourne
- Peter Ivatts as the Archbishop of Canterbury, William Howley.
- Michael Parkhouse as Lord Melbourne's Butler
- Alice Orr-Ewing as Lady Flora Hastings
- Robin McCallum as Lord Portman
- Nichola McAuliffe as the Duchess of Cumberland
- Richard Dixon as the Lord Chancellor
- Julian Finnigan as Lord Hastings
- Tom Price as the Duke of Sutherland
- Daniel Donskoy as The Grand Duke
- Robin Soans as Sir James Clark
On 28th August 2016 in the UK, ITV broadcast Doll 123 against BBC One's "Sitcom Season" revamps of "Are You Being Served" and "Porridge". Porridge got 4.4 million views, Are You Being Served 5 million and Victoria 5.4 million.
Victoria debuted on American television on 17th January 2017 on the PBS network as part of its long-running anthology series, "Masterpiece". Due to PBS airing its programmes without commercial interruption, most episodes of Victoria air on PBS with additional scenes not included in either the ITV broadcast or the UK or North American DVD and Blu-ray release. An exception is "Doll 123" and its immediate follow-up, "Ladies in Waiting" which were edited together to form a two-hour "movie", resulting in several scenes being cut or shortened. When PBS debuted Series 2 in January 2018, it once again aired the first two episodes of the season as one broadcast, but did not edit the episodes together, allowing for scenes to be added rather than trimmed. As such, it is not known if any deleted scenes, intended for PBS broadcast but unused, were filmed.
Behind The Scenes
- Jenna Coleman, Eve Myles and Tommy Knight have all appeared in ongoing roles in the "Doctor Who" franchise.
- Coleman from 2012 to 2015 as Clara Oswald, the companion of both the Eleventh and the Twelfth Doctors.
- Myles as Gwyneth in 2005, Gwen Cooper in 2008 and as Cooper in Doctor Who spin-off "Torchwood" (2007- 2011).
- Knight as Luke Smith in 2008 and in Doctor Who spin off "The Sarah Jane Adventures" (2007 to 2011).
- The actual coronation took place on the 28th June 1838, a year after Queen Victoria succeeded to the throne. The show tends to speed things up, so it looks like there wasn't much of a wait between the announcement that William was dead and the day of her coronation.
- In real life, it is unlikely that Victoria actually fancied Lord M because she only saw him as a father figure.