The Crown Season 3 assembles a wonderful cast with superb performances and manages to sustain interest in the modern-day Royal Family battling with a changing, progressive landscape.
This review of Netflix Series The Crown Season 3 contains no spoilers.
The impressive point regarding The Crown is that it does not care if you are an avid supporter of the Royal Family. The Netflix series is layered in such detail and quality that the story is consuming in itself. After two seasons, The Crown has become a streaming household favorite. Season 3 was a no-brainer.
The significant change in Season 3 is that Claire Foy has passed on the torch so a midlife Queen Elizabeth II can be represented. Olivia Colman grabs that torch, serving no grumbles from the industry. It is a sideways jump from The Favourite for Colman, but it would be difficult to find a better Queen. From her posture, facial expressions and simply blurting a posh “Yes”, Colman is a natural. The Crown Season 3 is another award-winning performance.
Season 3 introduces us to Helena Bonham Carter’s Princess Margaret. Its even clearer why she was cast; a wild, outspoken Princess yearning for the clutch of power fits the versatile actress’s caliber. Margaret’s episodes are as compelling as the Queen’s, claiming a more varied season. We also have Tobia Menzies’ Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, who is way more likable and engaging in Season 3; he’s a grumpy, British man — just how we’d expect him to be.
And that’s the core three, but there are plenty more cast members to enjoy in The Crown Season 3. The production is so well assembled that it matches its predecessors. Each scene compels you with grand performance after performance, making it the dark horse series of 2019. But grand performances were expected when you see the cast; the question remained in whether The Crown could sustain interest in the modern-day Royal Family.
It does sustain interest and impressively, giving us a window in certain significant periods in The Queen’s life. Season 3 explores a new Prime Minister that pushes the socialist movement, the horrifying Aberfan disaster that forced The Queen to make a public decision and the miner’s strikes that sparked worker’s rights movements more than ever. Some chapters are markedly case-studies, peeling the layers from the Royal Family and understanding their place in a highly privileged and structured world.
Like its predecessors, The Crown Season 3 runs on the theme that being part of the monarchy is not as immense as we’d like to think. Season 3 toys with the idea of one’s purpose, with the Royal Family feeling more isolated from real-world events. Instilled in the story is a real question of character as the world progresses while the monarchy remains static. As demonstrated recently by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, being part of royal blood ties is not straightforward, with history highlighting cruelty within the Royal Family.
And once Season 3 is finished, audiences can take comfort that there will be a fourth season with this wonderful cast. We can continue to enjoy a new younger and rebellious Prince Charles (Josh O’Connor), a miserable Philip, a glorious Margaret, and calm, calculated Queen. Netflix’s The Crown Season 3 is truly marvelous.
You can read the recap of the first episode by clicking these words.
Daniel Hart is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has operated as Editor-in-Chief since 2017.