Verdict: The Crown Season 1 Episode 10 “Gloriana”

This finale again uses other relationships and events as representations of the pressure upon Elizabeth to choose between her role as monarch and as a sister and wife. Noting Edward’s abdication (once again), and Margaret’s wish to marry Peter, Peter Morgan attempts to showcase how individuality and personhood is handled in accordance to duty and responsibility. These are incredibly insightful comparisons, and the sentiment is certainly felt emotionally and understood in regard to the historical era, which the show does a marvellous job at discussing. However, I feel this episode brought nothing new to the conversation, one which has been mentioned throughout the season. The events needed to be mentioned, but they lacked the effect of previous episodes, and could have been presented in a different angle. Interestingly, the most intriguing aspect of this discussion was how Margaret’s desire for individuality was mirrored by that of Philip and his wish to see Elizabeth be less of a figure and more of herself, and I wish more time had been given to focussing purely on this relationship, rather than showing it through others. But the transition The Queen has made is certainly evident, both in her actions and in Claire Foy’s performance. The need for sacrifice for the betterment of the crown is the series’ central message, and it does a brilliant job at recognising it. At the end of the day, it is the monarchy that must survive, not the personality or their wishes and promises. 8.5/10

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