“The Crown” Review

While “The Crown” has wonderful acting elements and certain storytellings, the execution of capturing the relationship between Princess Diana and Charles III fails to deliver in the most accurate way.


Photo Credit Deadline.com

Brooklynn Prince, Staff Writer

Creating dramas that are based on individuals who are known for their mysterious glamor is a difficult challenge. Writers and directors must accurately and appropriately capture the celebrity while simultaneously not knowing anything about them from a personal aspect. Despite this difficulty, it is possible to successfully create a piece that tells the story of a known figure while also having a touch of drama, and this is greatly shown in “The Crown”, a drama series which follows the life of Queen Elizabeth II from the 1940s to more recent decades.

While reaching its fifth season and being renewed for its sixth proves the show’s merit, I wanted to watch it for myself and observe the show for its storytelling, acting, and accuracy and fabrications. However, it seems that the show’s ability to make accuracy a goal has somewhat declined in season five compared to the earlier seasons. 

With the series being a Netflix original, I have to say I was a little apprehensive upon watching it, especially with the streaming service’s recent controversies. Recently, Netflix released “Blonde,” directed by Andrew Dominik. Promoted as a biopic of the late Marilyn Monroe, the Netflix film had received an onslaught of controversy due to its inaccurate storytelling of Monroe. The film prioritized shock value over telling the true story of the misunderstood celebrity, depicting several sexually graphic scenes and overfabrications of Monroe’s relationships and affairs. 

However, the powerful storytelling of “The Crown”, especially in the earlier seasons, proves that “Blonde” was just Netflix’s bad seed. My favorite element of the series is the smooth but prominent transition of characters that each season individually focuses on. While the series of course highlights Queen Elizabeth II, especially in the earlier seasons, the newest season has largely been recognized for its plot around the life of Princess Diana. If you aren’t sure if you’ve heard of the show before, you have definitely seen the circulating clips on social media, especially on TikTok. 

Aside from the show’s attention-catching plots about Diana and her troubles with her husband’s infidelities, there have been controversies on the newest season. Many reviewers from notable sites such as The Guardian, Rotten Tomatoes, and New York Times, have condemned the show for “losing its touch” this season. 

As mentioned earlier, season five largely follows Princess Diana and her timid relations with her husband, Charles III, and his mother, Queen Elizabeth II. 

While most people know of the infidelity in the marriage between Diana and Charles III, “The Crown” captures the scandal from both perspectives of the dividing couple and even Camilla, the now wife and former secret partner of Charles III. While I assume this was an attempt to accurately showcase the notorious scandal by focusing on all those involved, it ends up appearing as a way to induce empathy in the audience for Charles III and Camilla. 

Of course, there are emotional ties between Charles III and Camilla that led to their relationship, and while that should be emphasized in the show, it should not have been utilized in a way that seemingly defends infidelity and the alleged psychological abuse that Diana experienced from her ex-husband. 

Despite the failed execution of that individual plot, the acting of each cast still remains a great element of the series. Elizabeth Debicki, who plays the essential role of Princess Diana, captured the grace but fierceness of Princess Diana in a special way. Debicki illustrated the elegance and kindness that Diana was renowned for during and after her passing, while also emphasizing her humanity and struggles. The director of casting, Robert Sterne, did a fantastic job of casting actors who not only look similar to the real people of which the show envisions, but also made it a mission to bring in talented actors who haven’t been given the opportunity to be on television in this way before.

With the show being recently renewed for a sixth season, it’s important that the show keeps its regality and intricate casting while also making it a goal to envision the royal family with the same accuracy it had before season five.