Richard Furnstein: The show is over, but Paul lifts the corner of the curtain to let a little light back on to the audience. "Her Majesty" is the pollen gently floating through the spring air, it doesn't matter if it lands on a lonely stigma. You are right, it breaks the heavy mood around the side two medley, where The Beatles threw everything at the listener to give him the strength to carry on in a post-Beatles world. But it's sketch-like nature and the crashing indecision of the song's introduction suggest that the ditties will survive. "The End" is a beautiful (ahem) ending, but seems a little forced for a band that was always thinking ahead to the next phase. "Her Majesty" is a relief. "Don't worry," they seem to be telling us, "McCartney's solo album is right around the corner and it is full of non songs like this!"
These false endings underscore the “nothing is real” message of the Beatles and give us hope in some cosmic sense that there always might be something more around the corner.
Richard Furnstein: I always wondered if George Martin supported the fake out ending to Abbey Road. Martin was very careful about sequencing closers for The Beatles. The early albums were based on the live set, so the shredders were given their natural position. That's all folks, there is blood on the mic. Later albums seem to blend the majestic ("Tomorrow Never Knows") and the pedestrian ("Run For Your Life") with consistently exciting results. The Abbey Road Medley was set to tear the faces off of the world (remember this is years before Genesis took us from the living room to Jerusalem in "Supper's Ready" from Foxtrot) and The Beatles decided to set off a roman candle after the bombastic fireworks display. Geoff Emerick later recounted the story of "Her Majesty" remaining on the master of Abbey Road in his soulless book Here, There and Everywhere. Abbey Road engineer John Kurlander kept the aborted snippet of the medley (following EMI rules) and Malcolm Davies missed the tape indication of the extra snippet in the final cutting. Sure, Davies should have been listening, but I think it all worked out in the end! (The album later went triple platinum.)