It’s Queen v. Queen in Spain

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In case you missed it Easter weekend, all hell is breaking loose over a video that appears to show a face off between Queen Letizia of Spain and her mother-in-law, Queen Sofia, over posing for a photograph with Letizia’s daughters, Infantas Leonor and Sofia. The video – or videos since there is both a long and short version circulating – appears to show Queen Sofia attempting to pose for a picture with her granddaughters and Queen Letizia blocking the shot. Leonor then attempts to remove her grandmother’s hand from her shoulder and is physically pulled back into place by Queen Sofia. The end of the video shows King Felipe (Queen Sofia’s son and Queen Letizia’s husband) coming over, which many read as him interceding.

You can watch the video here.

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There’s a lot that’s open for interpretation, of course. Does Letizia know that she’s blocking a photograph? Why does Leonor attempt to get out of her grandmother’s grasp? Why does Queen Sofia insist? Everything happens so quickly that it could all very well have been miscommunication amidst chaos as the Royal Family was leaving Easter service that day.

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Except, of course, Letizia’s former co-worker, Imma Aguilar, in response to criticism of Letizia, told a Spanish news outlet that:

“I think they are the images of a mother worried about the image of her daughters. I talked to Queen Letizia a while ago, and she is worried and quite desolated by this situation; she is very committed to the care of her daughters, with the protection of their image, she worries who takes photos of them. She worries where they come from, who approaches them… It’s a very motherly reaction. It’s been silly, it’s not a serious issue, nothing has happened, it’s just a natural gesture. She’s not a person who has been educated from the beginning to have a certain public behavior, she’s very committed to her work, her profession, with the role she plays and, as a mother, with her daughters.”

Frankly I would have gone with the miscommunication defense, because this just makes it weirder. The girls were at a public event at which throngs of photographers were waiting outside. One photograph with their grandmother doesn’t compromise their privacy in that situation.

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Then layer in that Princess Marie Chantal of Greece tweeted (yes, tweeted, God help us) that Letizia had shown her “true colors.”There are familial ties between the Greek and Spanish royal families since Queen Sofia is the daughter of King Paul of Greece.

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So, what exactly is the deal between Sofia and Letizia? We have no idea, unfortunately, but there have been rumors of tension for years now. Why it bubbled over in this moment – in front of cameras, no less – is anyone’s guess, but if this is what happens in front of us, then God only know what has been going on behind closed doors.

At least that’s the consensus. Call me naive, but I still think this is possibly much ado about nothing [or very little]. Maybe Sofia and Letizia don’t get along, but is it possible that Letizia was just trying to usher her daughters outside where the rest of the photographers were so they could pose for the formal images (seen above)? I’m still erring on the side of dramatic miscommunication until told otherwise.

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