The Crown (Netflix, 2016)
Note: This was written and posted in an old blog some time November 2016, right after the release of season 1 of The Crown on Netflix. That old blog is gone and I’m re-posting it here in its updated form.
If you will look into my Netflix playlist, you will find The Crown on the list. This TV series is a Netflix Original series created and written by Peter Morgan. It stars Claire Foy as Queen Elizabeth II, Matt Smith as Prince Philip and John Lithgow as Winston Churchill.
Season 1 has ten one-hour episodes and was released November 2016. The filming of the second season began before the first season was released and was released December 2017. The original plan for this series is to run 60 episodes over six seasons depicting the reign of Queen Elizabeth II from 1953 to present.
The series began from the time Lt. Phillip Mountbatten renounced his title as Prince of Denmark and Greece to become a British citizen before his marriage to Elizabeth Windsor, heir to the throne of England. Then it went fast forward to the time when the couple went to several state visits to a few Commonwealth nations on behalf of King George V who was ill that time.
Of course, we all know from history that the King died while the Royal couple were in Kenya. In all fairness, the series tried to remain historically realistic down to its production. Reports say that this is one of the most expensive Netflix productions.
What I liked in this series was the way the creators humanizes the Royal Family and how they were limited by their stature, their traditions, and their Constitution and laws.
However, the depiction of the human side of these members of the Royal family and some well known politicians like Winston Churchill, made me ask “Did it really happen?”
While watching, I asked myself many questions ranging from the abdication of King Edward, to Princess Margaret’s affair to Peter Townsend. I knew those stories because they were told to me when I was young and I’ve read about it many years ago. In fact, I saw a thick book about the Peter Townsend story lying around in our house in Cubao while I was still in grade school.
On the other hand, the audience can relate to the dilemma of each character because of each his or her own human frailties. The Crown still symbolizes the rich and magical world and the lives of the Royals that translates into inspiration among common people.
Watching the series, especially season 1, was not even dragging for me. In fact, I binged-watch the whole season 1 in one sitting. Each episode presents a part of history with lesser reference to the previous ones. However, after watching the tenth episode, I couldn’t wait for season 2.
But when season 2 came, my interest waned because there were other Netflix programs that caught my attention. Well, it’s just me and my opinion.