The Crown (Netflix Original)

Was wondering if anyone has caught this yet. A very lavish look at the opening years of the reign of Bond's Big Boss, Queen Elizabeth II. It is an extraordinary piece of TV, which depicts not just the royals, but the political scene of 1950s Britain.

I was shocked by an episode which focused on the Great Smog of 1952, with Churchill struggling to recognise the gravity of the crisis. I had no idea that some 4000 Londoners died because of it.

Claire Foy is superb as the steady young Queen. Matt Smith surprisingly strong as Prince Philip. John Lithgow excellent as Churchill (although it took me until the Smog episode for him to emerge as Churchill - my mind was still full of the magnificent versions by Robert Hardy, Michael Gambon and Albert Finney) and perhaps the best of all, Jared Harris, as the dying King George VI. I smell an Emmy on its way.

1950s London is brought vividly (and sometimes grimily) to life. Top stuff.

Although, five episodes in, it has given me a somewhat visceral hatred of Anthony Eden. Not a sentence I thought I would ever write.
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Comments

  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,488
    I'm interested in British politics, so definitely will have to check this one out! Sounds excellent. And a Doctor in the cast.
  • BondJasonBond006BondJasonBond006 on fb and ajb
    Posts: 9,021
    Definitely a must see I think. Added to my list in Netflix. Thanks.
  • I'm interested in British politics, so definitely will have to check this one out! Sounds excellent. And a Doctor in the cast.

    Matt Smith was surprisingly good as Prince Philip. Not sure about other Doctors who have played historical characters - I think Tom Baker played Rasputin once.

    The politics involved are the twilight years of Winston Churchill's power (which is very touching) and Sir Anthony Eden's succession to Number 10, after a long wait. It's also interesting to see the young queen get to grips with her new position.

    The period is presented magnificently. An era and a London that Ian Fleming knew intimately, of course.

  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,488
    I'm on Episode 2 now.
  • Posts: 2,341
    I was always into the British Royals. I was happy to tune in and watch this superb series to its conclusion this weekend.

    I agree with the casting of Claire Foy as the young and beautiful Queen. I felt that Lithgow did a good job as Winston Churchill and a lot of the pomp and ceremony as well as the conflicts was very compelling. The guy playing her Personal Secretary, whom they called "Tommy" , I thought was a domineering and a real screen presence. He transcended every scene he is in.
    The show basically covers the years 1947 (her marriage to Lt Phillip Montbatten) to 1955. I knew he was born in Greece but had no idea that he had to give up his titles and claim to the Greek and the Danish thrones prior to marrying her.

    The show left me wanting more.
  • By all accounts Tommy Lascelles was just as dominating and formidable as he appeared on screen. A nice contrast with the more flexible and charming Martin Charteris, I thought.

    Philip's sacrifice (and for such a proud man, it really was a sacrifice) of his career and even his family name is sometimes forgotten. As is the story of Princess Margaret. What an extraordinarily vivid personality she was in her younger days. The relationship between the sisters is compelling. "BUT Margaret is my joy.."

    Oh, PropertyOfALady if you are on episode 2, that means Christmas at Sandringham, with the King and Princess Margaret around the piano. That brought a lump to my throat.
  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,488
    Yes, that really was quite a sad moment. Actually I am about 5 minutes into episode 3 now.
  • Posts: 2,341
    I liked the scene where Lascelles and a group had Townsend on the carpet and "Tommy" was quick to remind the Group Captain that he was to refer to Margaret with the proper "HRH".
    Townsend was overly arrogant and he must have felt he was invulnerable. He should have been happy they were not sending him to some desert outpost or the artic. How cheeky!
  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,488
    I find Edward VIII most vile!
  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    edited November 2016 Posts: 3,488
    If you have seen The Crown and wish to discuss the series, but do not wish to post here due to
    spoilers
    , PM me.
  • It's a strange one, spoilers, for this show. One newspaper columnist (I forget which one, I think it was in The Times) was stunned when a friend of hers upbraided her for revealing a certain 'spoiler' - he had no idea that the king would die. Since the show is about Queen Elizabeth II and her reign, the king dying would, even to those with no knowledge or interest in history, seem to be a prerequisite. Still, perhaps we shouldn't jump to conclusions. I wouldn't want to spoil the show for anyone.

    I think the UK and the Commonwealth dodged a bullet when King Edward VIII abdicated. Give me George VI, Lilibet and Margaret, any day of the week over him.

    Also...
    Sir Anthony Eden, drug fiend! :-O
  • DragonpolDragonpol Writer @ http://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    edited November 2016 Posts: 13,394
    I find Edward VIII most vile!

    He was and is and will remain so. A shame on the British Royal Family. In Hitler, he backed the wrong horse and lived out his days in exile in France.

  • Finished it now. Superb piece of television, and a wonderful slice of the early 1950s. It really brings it home just how long she has been on the throne that she is fretting in this on what she could possibly say to President Eisenhower. Before her coronation she also met with Herbert Hoover and Harry Truman. She has met every president since - with the sole exception of Lyndon Johnson. The history she has seen!

    Already seen a few photographs of the filming of the second series. It's Supermac time.
  • DragonpolDragonpol Writer @ http://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 13,394
    Was wondering if anyone has caught this yet. A very lavish look at the opening years of the reign of Bond's Big Boss, Queen Elizabeth II. It is an extraordinary piece of TV, which depicts not just the royals, but the political scene of 1950s Britain.

    I was shocked by an episode which focused on the Great Smog of 1952, with Churchill struggling to recognise the gravity of the crisis. I had no idea that some 4000 Londoners died because of it.

    Claire Foy is superb as the steady young Queen. Matt Smith surprisingly strong as Prince Philip. John Lithgow excellent as Churchill (although it took me until the Smog episode for him to emerge as Churchill - my mind was still full of the magnificent versions by Robert Hardy, Michael Gambon and Albert Finney) and perhaps the best of all, Jared Harris, as the dying King George VI. I smell an Emmy on its way.

    1950s London is brought vividly (and sometimes grimily) to life. Top stuff.

    Although, five episodes in, it has given me a somewhat visceral hatred of Anthony Eden. Not a sentence I thought I would ever write.

    I meant to ask you earlier but why does Eden come across so badly?
  • Eden was under Churchill's shadow for a long time. He was an excellent Foreign Secretary (and, like Churchill, had been anti-Hitler far earlier than most of the British politicians of the day) but was itching to get the big job. Churchill kept fobbing him off, promising to leave, and then postponing the promised resignation and hand over. Eden undermining Churchill and working in the shadows to oust him, came across as very unsavoury to me. They portrayed him in The Crown as a slimy, disloyal individual. I'm not sure how historically fair that is. Churchill was clearly unfit for office by the end. The irony being, of course, was so was Eden.

    Recently ITV produced a feature length drama called Churchill's Secret which starred Sir Michael Gambon as Winston; this also focuses on the ailing Churchill, the cover-up of his strokes, and the political shenanigans of Anthony Eden (as well as touching on poor little Marigold). It's worth a watch.

  • LeonardPineLeonardPine The Bar on the Beach
    Posts: 3,168
    Watched some episodes last night as my Wife is watching the series.

    A beautiful and lavish production. Very good performances and a fascinating look at that era.

    Just makes me pine for a series that faithfully adapts the Fleming novels with this kind of production values.

    Come on EON!!
  • I would love a period series of Bond adaptations too, but concede that it will certainly not happen anytime soon.

    Another Crown/Bond link. Sir Anthony Eden stayed at Goldeneye in Jamaica for a month to recuperate in 1956. This did no harm at all to Ian Fleming's public profile.

  • doubleoegodoubleoego #LightWork
    Posts: 11,090
    After hearing great things about this series I'm going to jump on this asap.
  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,488
    Please do. You won't regret it.
  • doubleoegodoubleoego #LightWork
    Posts: 11,090
    I'll be starting tonight.
  • Posts: 2,341
    Finished it now. Superb piece of television, and a wonderful slice of the early 1950s. It really brings it home just how long she has been on the throne that she is fretting in this on what she could possibly say to President Eisenhower. Before her coronation she also met with Herbert Hoover and Harry Truman. She has met every president since - with the sole exception of Lyndon Johnson. The history she has seen!

    Already seen a few photographs of the filming of the second series. It's Supermac time.

    The show has left me wanting more, I can hardly wait until the second series. How many years will it cover ? the first was 1947-1955 will the next series go up to 1960's following the births of Elizabeth and Phillips younger sons?

    Also I agree the Duke of Windsor was an asshole Royale. He outlived his younger brother by twenty years. Both men were heavy smokers and this led to both their demises.
    Makes one wonder: with Margaret dying at the age of 72, the Queen Mother at 101 and with Phillip now 95 and HRH now 90...how much longer will Charles have to wait and how long will this jolly chap live? Only time will tell...
  • I'm not sure which years exactly the second series will cover. We'll certainly see the Eden and Macmillan years in power. Will it mention Eden's stay with Ian Fleming? Maybe it will be 1956-1964, which would take us through, as you say, the births of Andrew and Edward, as well as the assassination of President Kennedy (Philip attended the funeral) and might end with Harold Wilson becoming prime minister.

    I think we'll also see more on Philip's role as a father. We've already seen hints that he sees Charles as a slight disappointment in the masculine stakes. Charles, of course, is today the longest serving heir apparent in British history. He has waited for the throne for longer than anyone else, beating Edward VII's long wait to replace Queen Victoria. The BBC are currently producing a TV adaptation of the very successful 'what if?' play, King Charles III, which imagines what happens when Elizabeth II dies. As far as The Crown goes, we'll hopefully see Charles grow up (if it goes the full 6 series) and it will give people a greater understanding of an often complicated and conflicted individual.

    That's just speculation on my part, but one thing is certain, it will be quite a ride. The attention to detail is extraordinary. Articles in the press at the moment about the 'true stars' of this series being those who researched and created some 20,000 costumes.

    Fired by this production, I've just recently read a biography of the Duke of Windsor and entirely agree with your analysis of the man @OHMSS69. I must say I am looking forward to the dramatisation of the final meeting between the Queen and her uncle, though.
  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,488
    I'll be interested in seeing who they secure to play Margaret Thatcher a couple years down the line.
  • zebrafishzebrafish <°)))< in Octopussy's garden in the shade
    Posts: 2,880
    Any information if and when "The Crown" will be out on DVD? Or will it only be available for streaming for the foreseeable future?
  • DragonpolDragonpol Writer @ http://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 13,394
    zebrafish wrote: »
    Any information if and when "The Crown" will be out on DVD? Or will it only be available for streaming for the foreseeable future?

    Yes, a DVD release would be nice for those of us who want to see this series but who don't stream on the internet.
  • edited November 2016 Posts: 2,341
    This show brings to light some of Phillip's idiosyncrasies. He was a proud man and I hear a stern father. When Prince Edward resigned from the Royal Marines he was called all kinda punk, wimps etc. But one magazine writer pointed out that it took big balls and courage to stand up to his father.

    Phillip's uncle Louis Montbatten (called "Dickey" by family members was Phillip's mother youngest brother) was pushing for the royal house to adopt that name over Windsor but consider that Phillip himself took his mother's maiden (Montbatten) name over his father's name.

    I understand that Charles was closer to his "Uncle Dickey" than to his father.
  • PropertyOfALadyPropertyOfALady Colders Federation CEO
    Posts: 3,488
    I would definitely get a release. If they put one out, hopefully there will be a ton of extras.
  • I'm sure The Crown will get a DVD (and how magnificent will it look on Blu-Ray?) release at some point. A commentary from the creator Peter Morgan would be fascinating. What did he leave in? What did he take out? What did he take artistic licence with?

    Charles certainly was extremely close to his great-uncle 'Dickey', Lord Louis Mountbatten. So much so, that there are rumours that when Elizabeth II dies that King Charles might rename the royal house, Mountbatten-Windsor. That would be in tribute to his father, Prince Philip, but I suspect, as @OHMSS69 rightly points out, it would be a more fitting nod to Dickey Mountbatten.

    Speaking of uncles, did ANYONE warm to the Queen's uncle David, the Duke of Windsor (formerly King Edward VIII)? He appears to have become the pantomime villain of series 1.
  • edited November 2016 Posts: 2,341
    I know little about the Duke of Windsor. He had hoped to see action in WW1 but Kitchener saw to it he was given staff positions while his brother Albert (George VI) actually took part in the naval battle Jutland in 1915...
    He got caught up in "the lost generation" flapper society of the 1920's and was part of the globe hopping "jet set". Where he met Wallis Simpson.

    During his visits to Germany in the 1930's I doubt he was actually a Nazi but he did have an ill advised admiration of Hitler and his associates.
    He was a proud man and must have always been furious at his sister-in-law for banning his wife from the coronation.

    We all agree that he was some kinda asshole and the scene where he was playing those bagpipes with tears in his eyes was kinda touching. I kinda felt sorry for the chap. Perhaps watching his niece's coronation left a void in his feelings as it reminded him of all he had given up for love...
  • Claire Foy and John Lithgow get Golden Globe nominations for their roles as QEII and Churchill; The Crown itself gets a nomination also.

    Mustn't be greedy, but I'm a little disappointed that Jared Harris didn't just squeak on the list for his George VI.
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