The death of Queen Elizabeth means everything in the Commonwealth is about to change. Royal stamps will soon bear the visage of King Charles III. What looks to be the final royal stamp sets to come out during Elizabeth’s reign comes from an unexpected ‘80s classic.
Decades Of Royal Tradition
Just five days after the death of King George VI, Director of Postal Services R.H. Locke held a meeting to create the first stamp with Elizabeth on it. The office sprang into action to create a stamp honoring her coronation. Ever since 1953, royal stamps have always included Queen Elizabeth on them.
It’s customary in the United Kingdom for the reigning monarch to adorn stamps and money. Now that Charles rules, a whole new wave of stamps and coins will come out with his face on them. On the money, he’ll look to the left. Why? Because Elizabeth’s coins feature her looking to the right—it’s tradition to flip directions when the ruler changes.
Queen Elizabeth’s Curious Final Stamp Set
In a shocking turn of events, Queen Elizabeth’s final stamp of her life is currently a set honoring Transformers. She had already been in power for 31 years when Transformers were first invented, and now the two will forever be linked in a powerful bit of pub trivia.
The comments to this viral tweet are a hoot. One user writes, “It’s what she would have wanted.” Another pointed out an interesting connection between Transformers and death: “What is it with Transformers marking the end of significant lives? Orson Welles’ final film? Transformers: The Movie.” Making things even more interesting is the fact that Welles and Elizabeth were apparently 17th cousins twice removed, but to be fair, everyone on the planet is related if you go far enough.
At Least They’re Available For Purchase
Honestly, the stamps are pretty sweet. You can take a look at or outright order them from Royal Mail. Had Queen Elizabeth passed a few weeks earlier, her final living portrait stamps would have been themed around the 2022 Commonwealth Games. A few weeks later, it would have been the incredibly fitting Royal Marines. There’s some gallows humor here that Elizabeth’s final stamp isn’t honoring queen and country, but rather a toy from the 1980s.
In all likelihood, this will not be the final stamp to ever have Elizabeth on it. The postal services will probably announce a commemorative stamp or simply decide to keep her on stamps until Charles is coronated. No coronation plans have officially been announced, nor will anything related to the portraits likely happen until Operation London Bridge concludes.