The Crown is one of Netflix's most successful series, but is it true to the facts?
The Crown is one of North America's favorite series. Hugo Vickers, however, has something to say about the popular series' accuracy. All three seasons of it.
Called "the most knowledgeable royal biographer on the planet," particularly on the period the series covers, Vickers has commented on the British Royal Family on television and radio since 1973, authored numerous books about the Royals, and acted as historical adviser on a number of films.
In his previous books on seasons one and two of The Crown, Vickers separated fact from fiction to tell readers what really happened and what certainly did not happen. Now adding the most recent season, The Crown Dissected: Seasons 1, 2 and 3 features Vickers' same episode-by-episode approach analyzing the plot, characterization and historical detail in each storyline. He describes how the series continues to distort the facts, and refers back to previous seasons whenever needed.
Vickers writes that he does not approve of The Crown because "it depicts real life people in situations which are partly true and partly false, and unfortunately most viewers take it all as gospel truth." He accepts that fiction can be a device to illuminate true events, but artistic license can create false, dangerous and lasting impressions as well what he calls a "perversion of what is true."
Undoubtedly there will continue to be debate on the accuracy of The Crown's storylines, but that is what makes historical dramas so compelling. The Crown Dissected: Seasons 1, 2 and 3 is a must-read for any fan of the show, as well as for all TV critics.
Hugo Vickers is the author of books on the Queen Mother, the Duchess of Windsor, Princess Andrew of Greece (Prince Philip's mother) and Queen Mary, all of whom are featured in the popular Netflix show, The Crown. In 2018 he edited The Quest for Queen Mary, which was universally well reviewed and sold over 40,000 copies. He lives between London and Wiltshire, UK.