The Crown season 5, episode 2 recap – who is James Colthurst?

November 9, 2022
Daniel Hart 1
Netflix, Streaming Service, TV Recaps


Episode 2 is a slow burner but provides the desired ending that signifies the narrative for the rest of season 5.

View all
Loading JustWatch data...


Episode 2 is a slow burner but provides the desired ending that signifies the narrative for the rest of season 5.

We give a royal recap of the Netflix series The Crown season 5, episode 2, “The System,” which will contain spoilers, so be warned!

Episode 2 delves deeper into the problems surrounding Princess Diana (Elizabeth Debicki) and the Royal Family, as her circle consists of trusted confidants linked to reputable journalists. The second chapter also gives the audience a glimpse into Prince Philip (Jonathan Pryce) and the hobby he enjoyed at this stage in his life. So far, The Crown season 5 has raised many questions.

The Crown season 5, episode 2 recap

The Crown season 5, episode 2 opens up with Prince Philip taking an interview from the press. He talks about his new hobby in life, Carriage Driving. He enjoys the competition of it. But then, the interview is cut short as he is shared some disturbing news. Later on, Prince Philip reveals to Queen Elizabeth II that his friend’s 5-year-old child has died of cancer. Elizabeth suggests he visit his friend, Norton because he is the Godfather. Philip smiles at Elizabeth, offering gratitude for making him a better man.

And then, episode 5 turns its attention to Princess Diana, who visits a hospital; her popularity and fame are flagrant. She’s the most sought-after Royal Member. At the event, a journalist, Andrew Morton, speaks to James Colthurst, a friend of the Princess who wants to speak to him about Diana. Later on in the evening, James tells Diana about this journalist. Andrew Morton intends to write a book about Diana to reveal the truth about joining the Royal Family. When Diana puts the phone down, she hears a slight disturbance on the line. Is she being bugged?

Philip visits Norton, but he’s out for work, so he accompanies Norton’s wife, Penny, instead and visits their child’s grave. Philip raises with Penny how long life commitment does not consider “growing in separate directions” as he references his wife, Elizabeth. He then suggests they set up a charity in their child’s name and think of new hobbies.

Philip’s visit is more than worthwhile as Penny offers him an old four-in-one carriage. He believes it could be a new hobby for Penny to repair old carriages. Philip organizes the carriage to be refurbished, and they ride out in it. After enjoying the carriage ride, Penny reveals that she has heard from Norton that Diana is liaising with a journalist on a “tell-all book.”

Diana is worried about meeting Andrew Morton, but James tells her she does not need to meet him but instead create tape recordings and have a “middle-man.” James offers to be the middle-man. Diana does not want to be the reason for a war in The Crown, so she needs her involvement in this book to be clean and blameless. And so the middle-man approach between Diana, James Colthurst, and Andrew Morton begins.

Diana records a tape, explaining how she wants to reveal her side of the story; she tells her story of the pain of joining The Crown and how suppressed she is. Diana reveals all; her turbulent marriage with Prince Charles, the cold shoulder from the Queen, the system behind the institution to keep her quiet, and the suicide attempts.

However, it seems someone knows about the book; a white van nearly hits James, and Andrew Norton’s house is raided. And then, the press secretary of The Crown arranges a meeting between Diana and Philip.

The Crown season 5, episode 2 ending – who is James Colthurst?

James Colthurst became a close friend and confidant of Princess Diana. He helped facilitate her relationship with journalists. It was his profession in the medical field that helped him and Diana become friends. She needed help with a twisted ankle, and he was there to provide aid for it. 

As we reach the end of The Crown season 5, episode 2, Philip and Diana meet. Philip talks about the importance of privacy. He reveals how he is fond of her and is on her team. Philip then tells her that everyone is part of “The System” and that they cannot air their grievances when things do not go their way. He then suggests to Diana that she must be creative and find her happiness within “The System.” Philip is firm with Diana, telling her to be loyal to her husband and not to “rock the boat.”

Diana is speechless at Philip’s speech, which leaves Philip satisfied, believing he has been heard. Philip then tells Elizabeth that Diana will be “fine.” Elizabeth tells Philip that marriage should be a union without secrets. Meanwhile, the book by Andrew Morton is published about Princess Diana. The book explodes globally, leaving the Royal Family in crisis.

Episode 2 is a slow burner but provides the desired ending that signifies the narrative for the rest of season 5.

What did you think of The Crown season 5, episode 2? Comment below.

More Stories

View all

1 thought on “The Crown season 5, episode 2 recap – who is James Colthurst?

  • November 9, 2022 at 7:31 pm

    Not sure what I think of season 5 at this early stage as getting used to the new older characters

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.