8 thoughts on “SNARK WEEK RECAP: Napoleon and Josephine: a Love Story (1987): Part 5

  1. Do the filmmakers mention anything about ARCHDUCHESS (not princess) Marie Louise being Marie Antoinettes great niece? They never point this out often enough…

    1. Couldn’t say for this series but the mini-series Napoléon (2002) briefly touches on it. (As it has to briefly touch on everything, given the information to runtime ratio.)

      I don’t believe any series mentions that before they had met, Napoléon protected Marie Louise from a bombardment. After Aspern-Essling (1809), Napoléon bombarded Vienna. Envoys reached Napoléon that Marie Louise was ill and couldn’t be moved from her residence. Napoléon agreed to cease all fire in that direction. A few weeks before, Marie Louise remarked to Archduke Charles that she hoped Napoléon would “have his head struck off” in the coming battles.

  2. If Napoleon had waited for Hortense to have her 2nd son, the Emperor Napoleon III, all would have been well, sort of. I’m not a fan if Napoleon, but I kinda like the Beauharnais: Josephine, Eugene and Hortense. Eugene’s daughter marries the son of Desiree Bernadotte nee Desiree Clary, and become Queen of Sweden. And we all know what happened to Napoleon III…. But I preferred the Masterpiece Theatre Napoleon in Love. Catherine Schell played Marie Waleska.

  3. Napoleon is fighting in Poland (nitwit soldier: “Is this Prussia?“)

    Actually a perfectly reasonable question, given that this would be 1806 and Poland had been carved up between its neighbours and the borders completely redrawn twice in the previous 15 years! And the Poles were hoping desperately that Napoleon would redraw them again in Poland’s favour: which was why so many Poles fought for him in all his wars, and why as soon as he got the hots for Marie Walewska just about everybody she knew insisted that it was her patriotic duty to sleep with him to ensure that he would feel warmly toward her country.

    My guess is that they put that line in as a deliberate nod to all of this. Wherever exactly this soldier was, even if it was technically Prussia right then it might not have been Prussia a few years before, and wouldn’t necessarily continue to be Prussia for very long.

  4. I deeply, truly hate Josephine’s divorce dress, what the hell?
    By all accounts Eugene and Hortense were very attached to their step father and he to them.
    I’ve always felt sorry for Marie Louise, sold to a man she’s been taught to see as an ogre. Napoleon seems to have been kind to her and she appreciated the fact writing that he wasn’t as bad as his reputation. She is consistently described as timid and withdrawn, she may have been afraid of Napoleon despite his expressions of affection. Nevertheless she tried to be a loyal wife and a good empress. The fall of Napoleon and her father’s about face left her confused in her loyalties, lost and bewildered. She seems to have had a reasonably happy life as Duchess of Parma with her lover and later morganatic husband Von Niepperg and his successor de Bombelles.

  5. As you asked about the formal men’s clothing: The most obvouis fault are the sleeves which are too short in most examples showing the cuffs of the shirts. The coats, breeches and waistcoats are looking very simplified and ill fitting. The design of the embroidery has some resemblance with a coat from the early 19th century in “What clothes reveal”. But I would suppose that the complete suits for the Imperial court and especially for dukes etc. of the inner circle were a lot more elaborated.

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