As theThe Crown’s final chapter unfolds, we bow down to series’ creator Peter Morgan and his beloved royal drama
By Charlotte Briggs, Staff Writer
When The Crown first hit screens in 2016, no one could’ve predicted how Peter Morgan’s fictional royal series would capture imaginations across the world. Packed with pomp and ceremony, it’s served as a gilded gateway into a centuries-old institution where duty and drama lurk in equal measure.
Inspired by the life and events of the late HRH Queen Elizabeth II, each season embodies dramatized periods of her reign, as well as the tumultuous personal lives of fellow royals and a chronological exploration of historical events.
Now, five seasons, three queenly performances and more than 120 awards later, The Crown is marching towards its long-awaited conclusion. But it isn’t over until Imelda Staunton bids us farewell in her swansong performance. And with a brand new 10-episode season ahead of us, there’s still plenty of explosive drama to look forward to.
Beginning with the 1947 union of Princess Elizabeth Windsor (Claire Foy) and Philip Mountbatten (Matt Smith), the first two seasons of The Crown captured Elizabeth’s ascension to the throne and the institutional tensions it causes within her marriage, family and government.
In seasons 3 and 4, a middle-aged Queen Elizabeth II (Olivia Colman) and Prince Philip (Tobias Menzies) navigated national unrest through Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s (Gillian Anderson) iron-fisted tenure, and a young Prince Charles (Josh O’Connor) brought Lady Diana Spencer (Emma Corrin) into the Windsor fold.
In season 5, The Firm (now led by Imelda Staunton and Jonathan Pryce) watched helplessly as the divorce of Prince Charles (Dominic West) and Princess Diana (Elizabeth Debicki) dominated headlines and threatened the stability of the monarchy.
Now, in its final seasonal shift, Staunton, Pryce, West and Debicki reprise their royal roles as cataclysmic events such as the deaths of Princess Diana, Dodi Fayed (Khalid Abdalla), Princess Margaret (Lesley Manville) and the Queen Mother (Marcia Warren) strike at the heart of the family.
Fans can anticipate some lighter fare too, in the form of the fairy tale romance between Prince William (Ed McVey) and Kate Middleton (Meg Bellamy), Queen Elizabeth II’s Golden Jubilee and Charles’ second marriage to Camilla Parker-Bowles (Olivia Williams).
The Crown’s monumental success is rooted in many elements: it’s received critical acclaim for outstanding cinematography, sublime set designs and resplendent costumes. But while there have been many portrayals of the royals throughout the years, none have been quite so captivating as The Crown’s ensemble cast.
Whether through the thunderous roar of Winston Churchill (John Lithgow) or the silent, veiled figure of Queen Mary (Eileen Atkins), The Crown’s star-studded line-up has enchanted legions of fans and ignited a multi-generational interest towards the British monarchy.
Morgan’s masterful storytelling also reaches far beyond the pageantry of coronations, Commonwealth tours and adoring crowds. While The Crown has received criticism for its sometimes melodramatic interpretations of events, Morgan has never shied away from zealously detailing the real-life scandals that have plagued the Windsors – from affairs to abdications.
Don’t miss any of the royal trappings and trials from the final season of The Crown, as the first four episodes debut on Thursday 16 November in Apps & Games > Netflix, with the final six episodes coming to Netflix in December. If you want to catch up on seasons 1-5, they’re all available to watch now in Apps & Games > Netflix.
As we get ready for The Crown to rise to the occasion one last time, brush up on your royal history with our regal quiz. Will you make it past the gates of Buckingham Palace?
How much do you know about The Crown?
When can I watch season 6 of The Crown on TV?
You can watch the first four episodes of season 6 from Thursday 16 November in Apps & Games > Netflix. The remaining six episodes will be available from Thursday 14 December in Apps & Games > Netflix. You can find seasons 1-5 of The Crown in Apps & Games > Netflix now.
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