Why King Charles Was So Emo at His Own Coronation
Coronations are inherently morbid. They mean the last monarch has died, and the new king or queen is strapping in. But they're also supposed to signify the end of an extended mourning period (hence the months-long wait between a late sovereign's funeral and the next Coronation). They're a chance for the royals to flex what they're really good at—not only stability and continuity, but gold and glitter, pomp and pageantry, all at its precisely planned peak.
So why did King Charles III look so miserable at his own (estimated) £100 million party? Is it truly his party to cry at, if he wants to? Was it #SadBoi Saturday? The crowning of the Emo King? Hadn't he waited (*checks calendar*) 74 years for this moment? This was HIS (and love-of-his-life Camilla's) MOMENT. What gives?
To be fair, we would be just as thrown if he had glued a gigantic grin across his face. That would feel off-putting and insensitive as the cost of living crisis drags on, as many still mourn for the People's Princess and as another royal court congregates in the kingdom of California (with no obvious signs of reconciliation forthcoming).
Here, a look at all the reasons why Charles had every right to frown his way to the crown.
If you think it's awkward to be late to your own party, take pity on Charles, who had to wait in his carriage for a full five minutes, allegedly for his son and daughter-in-law who may have been running a bit behind.
According to The New York Times, in the meticulously orchestrated timetable for Operation Golden Orb, the Prince and Princess of Wales were scheduled to be at the abbey at 10:45 a.m., a full eight minutes before the King and Queen's carriage pulled up at 10:53 a.m. They should've walked in before the King and Queen, who would be (and historically always are) the last to enter.
However, Charles and Camilla awkwardly waited inside the Diamond Jubilee State Coach for what must've seemed like an eternity to the almost-crowned King, and then alighted after Kate and William's car arrived, meaning Kate and William actually processed into the church behind Charles and Camilla. According to lip readers from Sky News, Charles told Camilla, “We can never be on time. Yes I'm… This is a negative. There’s always something… This is boring."
Back inside the Abbey, though, his other son, Prince Harry, was in the cousin row, three from the front, and probably wondering whether the traffic from LAX to Montecito would be an issue at 8 p.m. PST that night. Add to the reasons Chuck had the blues: One son might’ve been late, the other couldn't get out quick enough.
Next up: Pengate, part deux. Did Charles practice signing the Coronation Oath for fear of another ink-flecked fiasco? While the Saturday signing went a bit better than the viral incident from last September, his grimace as he replaced the pen cap hinted at tension simmering—nay, leaking—under the surface.
Other reasons to be upset at your own Coronation: The Grim Reaper showed up uninvited (there *is* a logical explanation for this, and it's due to someone called a "verger," but still...). Your niece Zara allegedly fell asleep during the ceremony and your 5-year-old grandson Louis couldn't stop yawning. Your crown, weighing in at a whopping 4.9 pounds, is heavy enough to break your neck with one wrong move. You're exhausted (and potentially hungover?) from rubbing elbows with diplomats and heads of state at the reception the night before. You’re not the scene stealer you always wanted to be; instead, all anyone can talk about are the gilded flower crowns the females in your family were made to wear. Your peers are all retiring, while you're just starting your new job. Don't forget: You waited 74 years for this, so if it's not the weight of St. Edward's Crown crushing you, it's the weight of your own expectations.
And it literally rained on your parade.
For more about the royals, listen to the Royally Obsessed podcast with co-hosts Rachel Bowie and Roberta Fiorito. Subscribe now or follow us on Instagram @royallyobsessedpodcast.
We Attended the Coronation of King Charles III in London—Here Are 5 Things That Caught Our Royal Eye