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Royal Wedding Photo Album Review: Majestic Indeed
April 29, 2011  | By David Bianculli

Okay, so I ate my scones, drank my tea and watched the Royal Wedding, transmitted live on BBC America. So here's my personal instant wedding album, of quick screen grabs of some of my favorite moments...

First off, a nod to the pool cameras set up to capture the event inside Westminster Abbey. We had side views, front views, rear views, overhead views -- all of it tastefully shot and perfectly miked.

And on BBC America, the play-by-play announcers for the royal wedding between Prince William and the now Princess Catherine were blissfully restrained. During the entire one-hour ceremony, except for identifying the various hymns and explaining the various transitions, they were silent. Not just whispering, like golf announcers. They shut up completely, and let the even speak for itself.

Long live the BBC.

Now, for some fast photos and observations:


A favorite early moment. The bride and groom, flanked by her proud dad and his proud brother. An example of how up close and personal the cameras sometimes got.


Early in the ceremony, William and Kate together. Listening intently to the start of the proceedings.


My favorite moment from the entire wedding. As the Bishop of London, from his perch high above the seated couple, is sermonizing about love and marriage and responsibiity, and the serious import of the decision to wed, he tells them, "You have both made your decision today." Kate shoots William a quick glance and a smile, and he smiles back. A lovely private exchange, in the midst of all that overwhelming pomp and circumstance.


The view from the congregation -- another scene-setting angle, as the couple prepares to exchange vows.


The exchange of vows. The camera used for the pool coverage was from an angle that showed him, not her -- but his expression was a very nice one to catch.


The choir boys. They sounded just like they looked: angelic.


Everyone in Westminster Abbey was treated to a rendition of "God Save the Queen" -- but for only one attendee, Queen Elizabeth II, could the song be taken personally.


Some shots were like works of art in and of themselves. This, from the side and beautifully framed, is one. The one at the top of this column, an overhead shot of them exiting the abbey, is another.


And, finally, a nice shot of the moment when Prince William and Princess Catherine exit the abbey and, for the first time, hear the roar of the waiting crowd before climbing into their fairy-tale horse-drawn carriage.

Nice shot. Nice ceremony. Nice moment of television -- watched, around the globe, by an astoundingly large number of people.




Jack Cheng said:

Thanks for this. I only have a minor interest in the royal wedding and your blog post had exactly as much as I wanted or needed -- selected photos of the scene and the participants and a taste of the proceedings.

Hope you get a chance to nap and catch up on sleep!

Comment posted on April 29, 2011 9:41 AM

EricG said:

As the Bishop of London began: "Mawwaige!..."

[Ha! Good one. All Princess Bride devotees are laughing... -- DB]

Comment posted on April 29, 2011 12:23 PM

Marlark said:

What a beautiful and simple way to share what was best about this morning's TV event. The screencaps were fun to look at and your wonderful descriptions truly captured the mood of the moment. I've never seen such a straightforward yet engrossing way to present and comment on a TV "happening." A format for the future? Thanks for the extra early EDT effort.

[Thanks. Lots of work -- but if YOU liked it, I must be on the right track. -- DB]

Comment posted on April 29, 2011 1:52 PM

Sarah said:

As I write this I am very sleepy. Yes I stayed up all night and watched the entire event on BBC America and it was great. I liked it way better then I thought I would and then some. The arrivals felt like the Oscar red carpet (only I only knew two of the celebs) and I wasn't paying as much attention to the clothes as I was the hats. The hats! All colors and sizes, some spiky others soft and with feathers, beautiful. I agree the commentary that they had was there but useful (I was worried if I watched any other network they would talk through the whole thing and hearing the vows was the reason to watch.)

Since the two kisses on the balcony I have been looking at the pictures and they are amazing and fun to relive. My favorite is the one from up above. When I first saw it I thought "how they do that?"

Everything was wonderful and I would lose another 24 hours of sleep to watch it again.

[I'm right with you. Hats! Who would have thought, after all these years, I could pick up a new fetish? Er, make that fashion appreciation... -- DB]

Comment posted on April 29, 2011 4:45 PM

Tausif Khan said:

I understand all the best bets for the second one. America's Next Great Restaurant as a recommendation over Masterpiece Mystery's South Riding? C'mon.

[Sorry to disappoint you. Soul Daddy makes me hungrier when I watch. -- DB]

Comment posted on May 1, 2011 7:45 PM

Sally W. said:

I got up early to watch the Royal Wedding. I thought it was a nice watch, something happy amid a lot of not-good news.

I didn't like seeing the American networks putting the tags on the bottom of the screen (as if I didn't already know that I was watching the Royal Wedding or what network I was on). ABC's tags were especially obnoxious to me, for taking up so much of the screen; I kept changing back to PBS, which plugged into BBC, to watch a cleaner visual.

Otherwise, I enjoyed it (but then again, I was a sucker for the publicity and I am a bit of an Anglophile...). For something big and expensive, I liked that the happy couple themselves seemed happy and it looked intimate enough for them (even as so many of us watched!).

Comment posted on May 2, 2011 11:30 PM

TerriC said:

Dave, loved hearing your thoughts. And I too was so thankful for BBC coverage. Matt Lauer tried to get his fellow anchors/experts to shut up -- must have mentioned they were go to let the sight and sounds speak for themselves -- and then the blah blah blah continued. Honestly!

The whole time I was watching, I was thinking" "Please be happy, please be happy."

All in all, worth getting up to see LIVE!

Comment posted on May 3, 2011 10:01 PM
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