The Nation Unites Over Paddington’s Poignant Tribute To The Queen

“Sometimes a gentle bear says the most important thing.”

Queen Elizabeth II and Paddington Bear share tea at Buckingham Palace during the Platinum Jubilee We...

Since the official announcement of Queen Elizabeth II’s death on Sept. 8, social media platforms and media channels worldwide have been inundated with homages. Celebrities including Elton John and Edward Enninful have paid tribute to Her Majesty, sharing moving messages about her 70-year reign. However, it’s a certain Peruvian bear who has managed to unite the public with his simple yet impactful tribute.

Barely 10 minutes after word of the Queen’s passing broke, the official Twitter account of Paddington tweeted: “Thank you Ma’am, for everything.” This quote is a throwback to one of the bear’s lines from the now-iconic sketch performed in celebration of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee earlier this summer. The Party At The Palace concert kicked off with a surprise comedy sketch featuring Paddington Bear and the Queen bonding over, you guessed it, marmalade sandwiches.

In the video, the pair enjoyed tea time together at Buckingham Palace, with the usual accident-prone antics of the bear derailing things a little. The sketch ended on a heartwarming note, with Paddington congratulating his friend on her 70 years of service: “Happy Jubilee, Ma’am. And thank you, for everything.” The duo then tapped out the beat of Queen’s hit song “We Will Rock You” with their silverware.

In the past few hours, Paddington’s tribute to Her Majesty has become a viral sensation. Many social media users have admitted that it was this simple tweet from a fictional bear that ultimately made them the saddest. One commenter tweeted: “Sometimes a gentle bear says the most important thing at a time of sadness.” Another remarked: “This simple sentiment, man. Can’t stop reading it. It’s absolutely got me.”

The tribute has also triggered a flood of fan art featuring the Queen and Paddington. In particular, a sketch by artist Eleanor Tomlinson, which previously enjoyed immense popularity over the Platinum Jubilee Weekend, has gone viral once more. The watercolour image shows the Queen and Paddington walking hand-in-hand. They are followed by one of the monarch’s pet corgis, leaving a trail of bunting and marmalade sandwiches behind them.