The Crown: Season 2 (DVD) – Series Review
Follow Genre: Drama, History
Distributor: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Episodes: 10
Duration: 60 min (per episode)

The Crown: Season 2 (DVD) – Series Review

Site Score
7.4
Good: Acting
Bad: Extras
User Score
7.5
(4 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 7.5/10 (4 votes cast)

We imagine many people find it interesting to get a glimpse of what a royal life must look like. While it might seem like a glamourous life, there’s always a flipside too. Queen Elizabeth constantly tries to do good: for the people, for her family, for the government, but it’s clear that those aren’t always compatible, and sacrifices have to be made. In season 2 of The Crown, we follow Queen Elizabeth II once more in turbulent personal and political times.

While Anthony Eden (Jeremy Northam), the British Prime Minister at the time, tries to tackle the Egyptian takeover of the Suez Canal, Queen Elizabeth (Claire Foy) has a crisis of her own to handle. She sent her husband Philip (Matt Smith) on a royal tour throughout the Commonwealth for several months, hoping he would find himself again and come home a changed man. Elizabeth suspects him of having an affair with a Russian ballerina, and hopes that by sending him away, he will come to remember that he has a loving family who need him. While Philip seems to be enjoying himself during his time on tour, things rapidly change when news comes out that Eileen (Chloe Pirrie), the wife of Philip’s Private Secretary Mike Parker (Daniel Ings), filed for divorce because of her husband’s infidelity. Seeing Mike and Philip are very close friends, assumptions are quickly made about Philip’s fidelity as well. Eventually, a real crisis is averted, but Elizabeth does have to make some sacrifices.

In the meantime, also Elizabeth’s sister Margaret (Vanessa Kirby) has some turbulence in her love life. While initially she was to marry Peter Townsend, it wasn’t meant to be in the end, and the two broke up. Now, Margaret is looking for a new love, even though she is clearly not over the breakup yet. One day, she meets photographer Anthony Armstrong-Jones (Matthew Goode) at a friend’s dinner party, and she quickly falls for him. He is very charming indeed, but what she doesn’t realize is that he has a dark side to him that he keeps secret from her.

Of course, outside of the above mentioned storylines, the other members of the royal family get their bit of the limelight as well. The Duke of Windsor (Alex Jennings) remains an interesting individual within the royal family, and in this second season he proves to be exactly that once again.

Overall, each episode handles quite a different topic in this second season. Different characters take the lead, which keeps things from getting dull. Nonetheless, it also makes the story feel a bit hasty at times, certainly towards the end of the series. Of course, seeing this is a series based on a not so distant history, there isn’t much room to play around. History is what it is. We do get a good idea of the struggles and the difficulties the Queen has to deal with, and it’s certainly fun to see her so differently than what we’re used to in real life, while still very recognizable as well.

Claire Foy does a marvelous job portraying the Queen. As we said before, she makes her seem so recognizable, while giving the viewer an insight into her real life and struggles. Matt Smith isn’t always as convincing as Prince Philip, but overall, he does a fine job, and we can’t really complain. Vanessa Kirby probably has one of the most interesting characters to play, as Princess Margaret is a bit of a rebel, she wants to do her thing, but is restricted by her background, which becomes very clear in Kirby’s performance. Margaret really struggles and often makes the wrong choices because of that, but that’s what makes her so intriguing to watch.

The special features on this DVD release of the second season of The Crown are really worth complaining about. To be frank, there aren’t any worth mentioning. The only things you’ll get are two clips about etiquette and royal pets, which aren’t that interestingly brought. And then there’s the photo gallery, which is in our view one of the most silly special features you can imagine, as virtually nobody is waiting to see stills of the series, while there are so many to be found online.

Conclusion

There is quite some variation between each episode of this second season of The Crown. Nonetheless, it also makes the story feel a bit hasty at times, but overall, we can’t complain about the story very much. The acting performances are really on point, so the only real negative thing to say is that the extras suck quite a bit. If you’re interested in this series, certainly go ahead and watch it, you won’t be disappointed. Weather you should actually buy the box is a different matter and entirely up to you. The only thing we can say is: buy it if you’d like to, but don’t do it for the extras, as you will be disappointed.

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Rating: 7.5/10 (4 votes cast)
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The Crown: Season 2 (DVD) - Series Review, 7.5 out of 10 based on 4 ratings

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