LORELAI: Hey, did you ever see that I Love Lucy where she goes to Buckingham Palace?
LORELAI: She tries to get the palace guard to break character. That was a funny one.
Buckingham Palace is the official residence of the monarch of the UK, located in the City of Westminster, the centre of London. It was originally a townhouse built for the Duke of Buckingham in 1703, and acquired by King George III in 1761. It was enlarged during the 19th century, and became the monarch’s official home on the accession of Queen Victoria in 1837. Used for state functions and extending hospitality to visiting world leaders, it has been a focal point for the British at times of national rejoicing and mourning.
I Love Lucy, previously discussed and frequently mentioned. The episode Lorelai is talking about is Lucy Meets the Queen (1956), set during the season when Ricky is on his tour of Europe, and Lucy is accompanying him. Lucy visits Buckingham Palace as a tourist, and tries to make one of the Queen’s Guard outside the palace laugh by cracking jokes. The guards at Buckingham Place are famous for remaining stony-faced on duty – they are meant to be fined £200 if they don’t. They will sometimes smile and pose for pictures with polite, respectful tourists, especially children.