Two royal weddings, a royal baby and another on the way, a tour of Australia, the Queen's 65th coronation anniversary, and Prince Charles's 70th birthday, 2018 was the year of the right royal knees up. But underpinning it all was the rise of the fab four, bringing the 1,000 year old British monarchy a blast of modernity and a touch of magic.
>> The four young royals are without doubt the glamorous end of the royal family, so wherever they go, they bring big crowds, people love to read about them. They certainly brought a new dynamism to the family. They're much more hands-on with the public. They're more touchy-feely, perhaps as one way of putting it.
They're happy to talk about their emotional side. And so they kind of engage perhaps better with the younger public than perhaps their predecessors did.>> It started with this, the dazzling nuptials of former royal wild child, Prince Harry, to the divorced American actress, Meghan Markle, May the 19th, Windsor Castle.
So far, so traditional. But Meghan didn't vow to obey her husband. Her dad was a last minute no-show. Unusually, Harry wore a wedding ring, the bride gave a speech, and there was this gospel choir at the ceremony.
Early signs for some observers that Meghan might be more willing to push royal boundaries and bend royal protocol. It was a fairy tale come true, but for Britain's insatiable tabloids, the honeymoon effect eventually wore off, and rumors of a rift and a difficult relationship between the duchesses began to surface.
>> I think there's a lot of fascination, particularly with Megan, this sort of glamorous Hollywood actress who suddenly joined the royal family. Perhaps people now are quite enjoying this new idea that there's trouble behind the scenes because
dynamic. These are actually royal courts, and they're quite gossipy places, and there's a lot of rumor and speculation, a lot of which is probably totally untrue.
It does work on the hand well for media organizations. They can sell lots of papers based on some of the stories, and it does make good gossip fodder.>> Harry and Meghan are likely to recapture some of the magic of this royal year in 2019, with a relocation to a new home in Windsor on the cards and a baby due in the spring.