She’s the preset
( JAYNE FINCHER / Getty Images)
Ever since we watched a young Queen Elizabeth take her place on the throne during season one of The Crown, we’ve all patiently awaited the premiere of Princess Diana.
For many of this generation, the associations of Princess Diana are vague yet distinct: mother to the beautiful Prince Harry and Prince William; impeccable fashion sense and athleisurewear that continues to live in our minds rent-free years later; and the lingering foggy impressions of the royal family loathing the woman seemingly beloved by the whole world.
If you binge-watched all of season four of The Crown in one day like me, you’re probably just as pissed off at Prince Charles for acting like the spoiled man-child he is. It makes you wonder how Diana tolerated him for so long. But through his hissy-fits, it makes you fall in love with her probably just as much as the world did when she made her media debut when she was 18.
There’s still much of Princess Di’s story to uncover by the end of season four (still haven’t gotten to the revenge dress, SMH), but there's still lots to appreciate from what we've learned so far.
She was the main character
The woman met Prince Charles while in a scraggly leaf costume for her school’s production of Midsomer’s Dream.
Fast forward two years and the world was hooked on her ever since her relationship with Charles was revealed. Yeah, she’s drop-dead gorgeous, but she also had the press eating out of her hands. She kept things real with everyone she met, while the rest of the royal family struggled to stay relevant. Aside from the Queen herself, all the other royals were in her shadow.
When Charles had an event without Diana, the crowd complained. When he was walking with her at his arm, all people would do was tell Charles how lucky he was. (Which he was! He was a gross 13 years older and had no semblence of an idea on how to talk to the average Brit!)
In The Crown, we see her creating crowds of people possibly bigger than those for the Queen. (Yes, all for her. Forget about Charles!) And who can forget when Princess Diana surprised Charles with a dance performance to Uptown Girl at the Royal Opera House for his birthday.
Yes, that really did happen and oh, I wish there were YouTube clips of it. There is however a video of the ballet dancer she danced with running through the routine himself.
She’s a fashion influencer over 20 years later
Though Diana certainly isn’t pulling stunts on Instagram, the photographs of her outfits continue to influence the current generation. Aside from her royal status, paparazzi from the ‘90s were said to love photographing her. At a graceful 5’20 height, with sly smiles and doe eyes, she was obviously beautiful. But her bold fashion choices naturally drew the camera's eye.
On the other hand, her fun athleisurewear continues to influence the current generation. In fact, they continue to be adopted in the current age of quarantine when sweats are just too hard to give up once we step outside. Even before she met Charles, Princess Diana often wore niche and colorful sweatshirts that we love to sport today.
Usually, royals’ most iconic dresses are their wedding dresses. It’s the time ordinary women become princesses so how would we not. But for Princess Diana, that’s not necessarily the case.
Princess Diana premiered her classic revenge dress in June 1994 (four years after season four ends). She debuted the bodycon dress with off the shoulder, rouched sleeves the same night Prince Charles revealed his affair with Camille Parker-Bowles. And 26 years later, we still can’t get our jaws off the floor.
I truly believe that Princess Diana would have killed a TikTok breakup transition if this feud played out in the modern age. The dress’s premiere was not only a slap in the face to Charles on what he lost, but it was also her showing the world that she was always fab as is, and she never needed her royal title to prove it.
She truly loved her sons
This isn't to say that the other royal mothers don't love their children. But Princess Diana most notably took to parenting her children more than the others. In season four of The Crown, we watch as Diana insists her children stay under her care and not under any nanny's.
One of the most defining moments of season four was the tour throughout Australia in which Princess Diana stood her ground and demanded that her baby William be with them at all times. Yeah, this may seem like a simple request, but she also had to put up a fight to get royal advisers to understand that her baby’s not a nuisance.
In the end, her constant devotion to her children and her determination to mother her children herself (as opposed to letting nanny’s take over) is what won the hearts of Australians and British.
Most can agree that Princess Diana was done dirty by Prince Charles and the rest of the royals. A simple look on how Prince Harry became so protective over Meghan Markle can attest to that.
But Princess Diana's ability to remain relevant in the hearts of those across the world just goes to show what sheer charm and star power she had, and no one could ever replace her (especially Camila).
Lauren Rousseau is the Online Editor of Rowdy Magazine. When Lauren's not starring at a phone or laptop screen, she enjoys watching ridiculous reality television, stress-baking and listening to music. You can pitch her stories at firstname.lastname@example.org and find her on Instagram @laurenxrousseau