The Crown season 4 has finally arrived, and fans eagerly immersed themselves into the history of the royal family. Netflix’s critically-acclaimed historical drama, which has always been met with great enthusiasm by fans, was even more special this season. It introduced the late Princess Diana and covered her impassioned romance with Prince Charles. As a result, the series faced several controversies, with friends of Prince Charles disapproving the portrayal of those events.
Season 4 covers the years from Lord Mountbatten’s assassination in 1979 to the ousting of Margaret Thatcher in 1990. However, the depiction of a cold-hearted and self-serving Charles marrying Diana while maintaining affair with Camilla sparked the displeasure.
“The new series paints the Prince and Duchess in a very unflattering light but at least at the start of reality shows like The Only Way Is Essex they admit that some scenes have been invented for entertainment,” a Palace source said.
“There is no sense of telling carefully nuanced stories – it’s all very two-dimensional. This is trolling with a Hollywood budget. The public shouldn’t be fooled into thinking this is an accurate portrayal of what really happened.”
Among the erroneous scenes include Charles verbally abusing his then-wife, Diana. The confrontation among Diana, the Queen, and Charles about his affair at their wedding rehearsal is also grossly inaccurate.
“This is drama and entertainment for commercial ends being made with no regard to the actual people involved who are having their lives hijacked and exploited,” said one insider.
“In this case, it’s dragging up things that happened during very difficult times 25 or 30 years ago without a thought for anyone’s feelings. That isn’t right or fair, particularly when so many of the things being depicted don’t represent the truth.”
The Crown – A work of fiction
Royal biographer Sally Bedell Smith expressed her thoughts to DailyMail saying, “The Crown is a work of fiction and the level of invention has been growing. While the earlier seasons were period pieces, series four is recent history, so it seems more cruel in its false depictions.”
“Because The Crown is such a lavish and expensive production, and so much attention has been paid to visual details about historical events, viewers are tricked into believing that what they are seeing actually happened. There should be a disclaimer at the start of each programme saying, ‘This is a work of fiction and any resemblance to those living or dead is purely coincidental.’”
Conservative MP Daniel Kawczynski also conveyed disappointment commenting, “I very much regret that Netflix is seeking to profit from such a venture, which really rubs salt on to wounds. Every family has their emotional trauma and dramas. Having it blazed upon screens and watched like this is very intrusive.”
On the other hand, Alun Cairns, another Conservative MP reminded that while “there is no doubt that whilst millions will enjoy watching The Crown, we need to be mindful that the programs raise painful events that will have an impact on members of the Royal Family and others who were children or innocent bystanders.”
He added that viewers should remember that the TV series is a drama and not a documentary.