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The Crown Season 5: Yachts, Interviews & Divorce

(Spoilers Ahead)

It has been a month since I shared my expectations about The Crown Season 5 right here on this site, and boy was I unprepared. It was much more and less than what I was expecting. I expected more historic 90's events but it was more involved with what's happening in the mansions inside. I also expected the same for earlier seasons, but got Royal Family drama again. I don't know why I keep expecting more when the series' name is literally The Crown, which tells the story of the Royal Family. I guess it's because they're able to tell historic events so well and so detailed that I forget it's supposed to be a show of the Royal Family. The episode I loved the most called "Mou Mou" told the story of people outside the Royals and it also got the most votes on IMDB with 8.5 rating. So I guess it's time for me to tell Peter Morgan that we need another historical drama. Definitely a show which takes place somewhere between 60s-00s , I don't have the patience for any type of media that involves World War II. There has been so many. Enough, really.





Anyway, I found this season very well-made, well-written, and well-shot in The Crown fashion, just like earlier seasons. You can tell it's the same series despite the whole cast being new. Some episodes stood out more, like "Mou Mou", "Couple 31"and "Annus Horribilis". The only thing I didn't like was probably the slow start with the Royal Yacht that I'm sure nobody gives two shits about, and the gruesome and terrifying scene at the start of "Ipatiev House". The whole episode was dark and unsettling, I was a fan of the work put in, but not in the story. The ugly truth of war, ego and politics... Russian politicians though. Yeltsin cracked me up when he talked behind the queen NEXT TO the queen.


I loved the way they opened season 5, the scene where the queen has an appointment with the doctor. Such a simple way to tell "we switched the cast! and now they're older!" It also describes the monarchy. It's like the monarchy is getting old & having health problems as the queen does. The other queens and kings probably did not face such drastic social change in their reigning years. Elizabeth has seen it all, War, Communism, Liberalism, Globalization,Technology etc. She has been a queen since the 1950s. I think It's pretty normal to fall behind after some time, and one of the main arguments of this season was this. How can you "lead" multiple countries with an old mindset in a changing world? We understand that better in the last episode. Britannia the royal yacht gets decommissioned, Queen-lover John Major leaves his place for Tony Blair and Hong Kong finally sets free from British colonialism. ( I love the shots of the Hong Kong scene though, I would like to add that.) The queen is seen worrying about her precious yacht while there are people living in poverty outside her mansion. This might have made sense in 1800s but it's the 1990s. We're talking about sovereign countries and human rights. We're also supposed to believe Charles is this modern royal who believes in"New Britain". I guess he sees himself as "modern" because he defied the church & monarchy with the affair, divorce and Camillagate (the dirty phone call) Charles, to begin with, you wouldn't even have half the fortune and privilege you have and we wouldn't be asking your opinion with "New Britain". Enough me being over with the monarchy, but still I'm glad the show is questioning the place of monarchy in modern times. Even seeing a bit of 90's TV channels were a pleasure, when William was switching channels, until he went back to boring BBC upon his grandma's request.



I didn't mind the episode with Prince Philip and the close family friend finding themselves a new hobby. I felt like I was not watching a member of the Royal family, just a woman who was grieving and an old dude enjoying life. Which also made me extra happy, since you won't see those people having fun in the slightest, one should be grieving and one should act old (whatever that means in this society) So, yes, I enjoyed it.





I'm not sure about the Prince Charles episode where he had this interview to save his reputation and apparently established a foundation which supported diversity? And we're supposed to feel sorry because his dirty calls with Camilla went public. Nope, I won't buy it because Dominic West is handsome as hell. (Charles is nowhere near as charismatic as he is! I see what you're trying to do show runners. You tested me once with Josh, and you're still testing me) I know for a fact that no one is all white or all black. He might be a good person in real life (I mean I don't know him in real life, I haven't lived/know that much to judge) but it's a fact that he's not in the best royal members club. The episode did not have to put his charity work at the end, after his scandal went public. What was the point if it's not to make us sympathize with him? I don't know, I'm very confused about Charles, is he the victim or the villain? Maybe even both. The show is not helping me decide either. One thing is for sure that something about him and Camilla sounds and looks wrong? Maybe love is like that, defying the odds and falling in love with the wrong person. I also don't know that, this was supposed to be about me reviewing The Crown. Yes, I found the last bit of the episode lame, where he gives a speech about being different? That audience will never be as privileged as you are Charles (or in that case the character Charles, since I don't know if it was his exact words) , and you're different because of your choices. I have always loved the video where he tries to breakdance though, so maybe you're forgiven The Crown.






Come on now, he is way too handsome to be Charles


Some highlights in the season could be the whole storyline with Princess Margaret and Peter Townsend reuniting. I saw that coming, but the way it was told was beautiful. Margaret getting excited like she was 16, her snapping at her sister at last, and the old couple having one last dance... The flashbacks also made it better, I forgot that they were that madly in love. I just love Margaret to be honest. Any scene with her is going to be a delight, I'm pretty sure.


As for Diana, anything with her in it, I was hooked to the screen. I don't know why, but I just want to know any possible thing about her life. Not in a creepy way though, as in admiring and trying to understand. How was she mistreated and how did she cope with it, did she deserve the treatment she got? Those are the questions I previously asked myself. I also did not live in the same time span as she did, so I'm always curious to know more. I loved her interview scene, her relationship with Hasnat and Mohamed, just her in general. Give me 20 hours of Diana, and I would still watch that. Something about her just feels very sweet, organic and charismatic. What do I think about Elizabeth Debicki though? She had Diana's mannerisms, the look with her doe-y eyes, voice that alters towards the end of the sentence etc. But I also wanted to see her being "People's Princess", getting her energy from them and her showing kindness & empathy in return. Seeing her alone and suffering was quite depressing. People using her and her just wanting to be loved... Her treating everyone equally, like Hasnat, just a regular doctor guy when she is a world-renowned, rich PRINCESS. You might say, what about it? Trust me, if you were a princess, you wouldn't be at that hospital anyway. And the scene where she almost crashes the car? Too soon, dear show runners, too soon. I see your foreshadowing and I don't like it.





I loved the Couple 31 episode, just everything about it. I'm a psychologist who took couples counseling classes, so seeing other couples describe their marriage and breaking point was extra interesting for me. The 15 minute conversation between Charles and Diana? It was CHEF'S KISS. Well, to me, at least. I could have watched an hour of that. The fact that they were talking about their real feelings and struggles after their divorce tells me so much about how much they had this pressure to stay married. I also saw that Diana truly loved Charles, which is very obvious in the way who is trying to save the marriage and who is ruining it.


Diana's stance in every scene she's in, I'm behind my tv yelling "Exactly, make them suffer, you deserve it". Like the scene with her voting against the monarchy, doing the scandalous interview, telling literally everything to the guy who came to collect info for his book. Her just going to the queen"Hey, So I made this interview, I talked against you guys, K. Bye." What didn't sit right with me was William's behavior towards his mom. I always saw Diana and her sons as this inseparable loving trio. The boys were always smiling and having fun next to her, and she took them to unusual places, so that they could have fun. These were in the pictures and videos though. It's the media, I don't/can't know the truth. But you can't fake such a bond like mother-child to look good to the media. I really don't know where Peter Morgan got his source from, but i hope it's not true. He even preferred his grandma? Very weird. Harry is also nowhere to be seen. What is he doing while William's at school? The house seemed empty so I guess they forgot to add him? Poor Harry.





Let's talk about Mou Mou now. The pacing and character development was brilliant. The fact that we are finally witnessing an actual Arab playing an Arab is extra important. Since I'm familiar with their culture more, I was able to sympathize right from the first minute and was curious about how they reached their success. We have been watching people who were born into privilege, wealth and royalty most episodes in The Crown, so episodes like this are just like a breath of fresh air. Mohamed's character is very interesting; he is ambitious but in an obsessed kind of way. Dodi is also very interesting, you wouldn't think the son of a rich guy would want to become an ambitious filmmaker. The whole episode them trying to fit in to the English culture is interesting and pathetic, on Mohamed's side. His obsession is very weird and unnecessary. You can't take the culture in you that easily when you were born & raised in a somewhere else and you shouldn't need to. Anyway, I'm glad that they were able to make it in the U.K., that really is a success story and an example that cultures do not matter when you're good at what you do. The reaction Mohamed gives when Dodi says he wants to make movies though, that my friends, was so close to home, the ungrateful "My son wants to make "useless" art when I want him to become a businessman or work in a socially acceptable job". The storyline with Sydney, I loved it. Again, someone outside the Royal Family, being more interesting than them in like 20 minutes of screen time. And finally, the end of the episode, shows two of the outcasts meeting and bonding, Mohamed and Diana.





The father and son duo returns in the last episode, to my surprise and joy. Like I said, they make things more interesting and flow-y. The episodes go faster when they're around, when The Crown is supposed to be a dialogue based historical drama. I was surprised when I found out Dodi had a girlfriend though (they even got engaged!!), because I thought Diana and him would have met by now. It was getting closer to the tragic event and I wondered how they did not even meet. So I looked it up on the internet and apparently, Dodi may have called off his engagement for Diana? And when they passed away together on that car accident, they have been going out for 2-3 months. This means that we are very very close to Diana's death, I wouldn't be surprised if she doesn't make it for the most of the episodes next season. Looking that up and knowing that Diana's packing up & getting ready for her own death, made me quite emotional I'm not going to lie. Thank you Hans Zimmer and Martin Phipps though. When I'm feeling something, 80% of the times the score is pretty damn good.



Who did the casting? I mean, wow.


Now, to sum up, (yes I've talked a lot) I liked this season as much as I did the other seasons. Seasons 3 and 4 was a tiny bit better for me, but it may be because of the excitement of getting to meet grown up Charles and Diana respectively. Now that we know them, their awful marriage and the story, it might have been a little less exciting. It goes downhill as the years pass by anyway. Another criticism I had was that the show focused too much on Charles and Diana's marriage or them as individuals. I think more than half was about them. Not that I'm complaining but what about the queen herself? I feel like she wasn't that present as much as she was in the previous seasons. It's pretty ironic when she and Philip show up to a party, they dance for like 30 minutes then go straight to their beds. The party seemed to start right when they left, and this was exactly how the season went. The real drama (party) happened when they weren't involved at all. Elizabeth was just a little jealous, that's all. It had been decades since the two got married and it was obvious they had different lifestyles. You should've understood that by now, Elizabeth. Kudos to them for staying married that long with that many differences though.


Plus, I wanted to see the drama between Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson. Divorces and marriages of the queen's other children were not prominent. Well, the children were not prominent either. I guess there wasn't any material to cover up, but they could have prevented this with making less seasons and earning less. Since we know that isn't going to happen, it's good to enjoy the ride. They make more seasons, and I get to enjoy it longer. Somebody just make me stop now, I can talk about this show forever.






Su Evci

nsuevci@gmail.com

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