Tag: Philippe

DISH OF THE WEEK #78 – Alexander Vlahos

As you will see by my previous post, I have become a little obsessed by a TV series called Versailles.

It originally aired in 2016, so I’m a little late to the ball game for this one.
I blame my Uni work. For the last two years, there’s really been no time for wasting time on TV shows, so I’m more than a little behind on EVERYTHING!!

Anyway, from the very first episode, I have been totally enamoured by Alexander Vlahos who plays Philippe, the younger flamboyant brother of Louis the XIV.

Image result for alexander vlahos philippe

As I got more into the show, I decided to research how much of this character was based in reality.
Turns out, pretty much all of it!!

Duke of Orleans.
He won several major battles for his brother.
During the reign of Louis, he was simply known as Monsieur.
He was the founder of the House of Orleans and a direct ancestor to Louis Philippe I, who ruled France from 1830 to 1848.
Although he was open about his homosexual behaviour and freely acted effeminately, he fulfilled his royal duty and married twice fathering several children. Through the children of his two marriages, Philippe became an ancestor of most modern-day Roman Catholic royalty, giving him the nickname of “the grandfather of Europe.

Even when he was married, he reportedly carried on open romantic affairs, with no regard to either of his two wives.

Among Philippe’s lovers, one man stands out, Philip of Lorraine-Armagnac, the never-married Chevalier de Lorraine, (played by Evan Williams and deserving of a Dish of the Week too!!) who was described as “insinuating, brutal and devoid of scruple”. This character is used to great and sometimes very amusing effect in the show. Although how he managed to keep his head after, historically, not one, but two stays in prison, one of which was for treason, is a miracle!! Philippe must have really loved him!

Anyway, this is becoming a blog about Philippe… let’s get back to Alexander.

Alexander is 5’10” and was born on the 30th of July, 1988 in Swansea, South Wales and his first language is Welsh.
Damn it! I’m old enough to be his mother!! This is ridiculous.

He his probably best known in the UK for his role as Mordred in BBC fantasy show, ‘Merlin’ where he earned rave reviews for his portrayal as the young Druid destined to kill King Arthur.

Apart from Versailles, what have I seen him in?

NOTHING!!

Well, I’ve seen a few seconds of Merlin because my kids have been watching it recently, but Versailles is it!
I look forward to seeing where his career goes.

Now, back to Versailles!

THE BLOG IT DESERVES

Way back on February 10th, in a blog entitled ‘My New Favourite Power Couple’ (Which you can read HERE), I spoke of a TV series that I had only just discovered called ‘Versailles’ and I went on to say that I couldn’t find series three.
Well, I finally found it, and I am now on my THIRD run through of the entire series.
I CAN’T GET ENOUGH OF IT!!!

In an article for the Radio Times back in 2016 by Ellie Walker-Arnott, she describes Versailles as “the latest European import to land on our TV screens – and there’s no denying that it contains nudity, violence and scenes of a sexual nature.

This is a historical romp, following a young King Louis XIV as he dreams of a grand palace at Versailles, struggles to maintain his power grip on France and sleeps with most of the women in his royal court”.

It has some “highly graphic” sex scenes that could put even ‘The Tudors’ to shame and has seen Versailles being dubbed as pornography, to which I have only one thing to say…..
Rubbish!!!
For anyone who doesn’t want to watch this kind of thing, CHANGE THE CHANNEL OR TURN IT OFF!! Stop trying to spoil everyone’s fun because you’re to prudish to think it shouldn’t be allowed.

Anyway, Alexander Vlahos, who plays Philippe, the flamboyant younger brother of Louis XIV, (and who will more than likely be my next Dish of the Week) is quoted in the Radio Times articles as saying “There is violence and raunchy sex scenes and nudity, that’s what’s different about this period drama. It’s not Downton Abbey. The average age of our cast is 25. It’s a bunch of cool young kids in power having amazing house parties!”

Image result for alexander vlahos

He’s not wrong! There are nipples, orgasms, gay oral sex and an attempt on the King’s life before the opening credits of the first episode alone and much more sex, stabbings and brutal beatings after.

With all that aside, Versailles looks stunning. The costumes are absolutely sumptuous with amazing attention to detail. There is a lot more to the series than the ‘scandalous’ sex scenes. There are secrets that need covering up. A power struggle between the volatile King and his flamboyant younger brother, between the King and his court, between the King and all of France. Plus the promise of an incredible palace, because “a king without a castle is no king at all.”

If you are a historical purist, you will probably hate the show but I have done some research about the period, and yes, the scandals, the sex, the power play, was all rampant at the time and Versailles has done an incredible job in bringing it all to the screen…. with quite a bit of artistic licence. That said, it’s incredibly entertaining and I highly recommend watching it if you haven’t already. If you liked the Tudors, you are going to LOVE Versailles!

Ellie Walker-Arnott ended her article by saying….
“In fact, if you ask me, the fact that it’s inciting panic in Conservative MPs makes it more appealing, and I’m certainly going to be tuning in past episode one”

Well, I’m going back to continue my third run of the series. Philippe is about to meet his next wife, she’s hilarious!

MY NEW FAVOURITE POWER COUPLE!

VERSAILLES!!!

Why haven’t I watched this before?!

IMDB states….
In 1667, 28-year-old all-powerful king of France, Louis XIV, decides to build the greatest palace in the world – Versailles. But drained budget, affairs and political intrigues complicate things.

I discovered the first two season on Prime a couple of days ago and I’ve been binge watching it as much as possible ever since. I’m almost half way through season 2.

The frustrating thing is, I know there is a season three but it’s not on Prime yet, so I’m just going to have to wait.

I love a good bodice ripper film or series and to be honest, nothing has come close to the Tudors since that series ended.
The last two years I have been a little pre-occupied with University work so binge watching anything went out the door or I was just too tired to stay awake.

As I watched, I fell in love with Philippe, the brother of King Louis XIV (The Sun King) and his drama queen of a partner, Chevalier.

They are amazing!
They are so snippy with each other. Chevalier is high maintenance but Philippe puts up with him because he quite clearly loves him, much to the annoyance of his brother Louis!
Into season 2 and Philippe is onto his second wife (as ordered by Louis) and I don’t think she’s going to be quite as accommodating as Philippe’s first wife. Chevalier is not taking things very well.

I did a little studying about Philippe and Chevalier. (I looked at Wiki)
Philippe was apparently very open about his homosexual behaviour and freely acted effeminately. He would often dress in ladies clothing. He reportedly carried on open romantic affairs with German nobles, with no regard to either of his two wives. Among Philippe’s lovers, one man stands out, Philip of Lorraine-Armagnac, or Chevalier de Lorraine, who was described as “insinuating, brutal and devoid of scruple”. As a member of the House of Guise, ranking as a prince etranger, Philippe could keep him near while at court and promote him within his own household without initially evoking scandal or offending sensibilities.

I fell in love with them even more!!

Right, time for some dinner and then onto the next episode!