'Game of Thrones' Meets Queen Elizabeth Meets Corgis (and Dorgies!) in This One Amazing Photo

Photo: Annie Leibovitz

Of all the reasons to love the new set of Queen Elizabeth portraits taken by Annie Leibovitz, our favorite might be the corgis.

Or maybe the dorgies. Somehow it feels like choosing a favorite would draw blood. (Those sharp little teeth! And small-but-powerful jaws!)

Taken at Windsor Castle in honor of the Queen’s 90th birthday on Thursday, the pictures include one of the monarch with her only daughter Princess Anne, and another with the seven youngest of her 13 grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

But it’s the photo featuring the Queen and her well-fed dogs that merits an especially deep dive.

First, the dog squad. We know how much she loves them. But how have we never noticed that these dogs don’t have legs? Not really, anyway. Just feet. And are they trained to look in the same direction as their mistress the Queen? All are in compliance except Candy, the dorgie on the bottom step. (The others, clockwise from top left, are Willow, Vulcan and Holly.)

(Also, Vulcan? Clearly the Queen is a Star Trek fan and “live long and prosper” are her words to live by.)

Now for the setting. Snapped on the steps at the rear of the East Terrace and East Garden, the Queen stands jauntily before a stone steed bearing a coat of arms. With its majestic, 1,000-year-old permanence and rolling black sky overhead, it suggests a cross between Harry Potter‘s Hogwarts and Game of Thrones‘ Winterfell. Close your eyes and imagine either Cersei Lannister or Hermione Granger standing in the Queen’s spot.

Of course, neither of them could pull off the Queen’s off-duty look: blue cardi, knee-length skirt, sensible black shoes. She’s not the boss for nothing.

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