Did you know that the Victorians invented films? Not only that, but one of the first stars of the moving image was Queen Victoria! Using real footage recently restored by the BFI, this special show takes a Horribly Historical look at the Victorians’ obsession with film. We see some of Queen Vicky’s very first filmic appearances (also featuring an initially reluctant Tsar Nicholas I), and also how the Victorians became obsessed with filming everything, from their holidays abroad to strapping cameramen to the front of a moving train (using only ropes) to make ‘Phantom Ride’ films.
Along the way we also meet the Lumiere brothers (one of whom looks a lot like First Dates' Fred Sirieix), Kaiser Wilhelm II, notable Victorian actor Herbert Beerbohm Tree, and we see that the Victorians were also early adopters of Fake News. The episode ends with a show-stopping song that traces the evolution of film from the Victorians’ first forays through to the blockbusters we see in the multiplexes today.