The Crown season 5 review – an enticing instalment filled with fact vs. fiction conundrums

By Daniel Hart
Published: November 10, 2022 (Last updated: December 9, 2022)
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The Crown season 5


The Crown season 5 may be faced with such venom and topics of fact versus fiction, but remove the noise, and you have another incredible drama on your hands.

The Crown season 5 offers a challenge for Netflix to maintain public debate of fact vs. fiction – here is our spoiler-free review.

Admittedly, when Netflix stuck out their chest, stating that the release of The Crown season 5 remains the same, weeks after the Queen’s death, I winced at their bravery to make such a press release during the nation’s sensitive time. It’s right that art should not be delayed indefinitely over real-life events, but I felt in the current climate, the streaming service would buckle and provide a new release date in the New Year. As the old saying goes – the show must go on.

After the release of The Crown season 4, the entertainment industry was plundered into a quandary of political debates, with UK politicians questioning the value of Netflix and embarrassingly suggesting that Channel 4 can compete with a global streaming service. With the introduction of Princess Diana, nerves were touched. The debate of whetherThe Crown is real” became the cornerstone of conversation.

However, the team behind The Crown must have braced themselves. The Royal Family shies away from controversy, despite being amongst a flurry of scandals in recent decades. The story of Princess Diana and her tormenting marriage with Prince Charles was always going to be a turning point in the series. The Crown season 5 has intensified the debate of fact vs. fiction. What’s true and what’s not? The conversation since the Queen’s death has only helped aid the arguments for the Royalists.

But let’s remove the circumstances. You, the reader, a Royal Family advocate or not, should question if we are the judge of the accuracy of a fictional show based on historical events.

Netflix has never summarized that each scene is a replicated portrayal of the events that unfolded. They have kept savvy on the subject, leaving interpretations of what unfolds the key to the stories presented. We cannot be the judges of accuracy, but we can discuss the topics in the show based on historical events, highlighting real and influential figures.

The Crown season 5 being a pointless war of fiction vs. fact is exactly what the Royal Family needs. It distracts from the conversations that need to happen around the operations and systems attached to a symbolic monarchy. The Crown should invoke healthy discussion, not encourage divisiveness.

But luckily, The Crown season 5 has heralded an impressive cast to continue this incredible drama. Dominic West, who dons Prince Charles, reins in a firm performance of a man who is not King. Imelda Staunton provides a stern but seemingly more vulnerable Queen Elizabeth II. Elizabeth Debicki brings a haunting and uncanny performance of Princess Diana.

Season 5 raises a significant period in the Queen’s reign, symbolizing the need to move towards more modern times and accepting the world has changed. The Netflix series harbors a hellish institution, brimming with frustration, confusion, and a weighted sense of chaotic lack of purpose that the Queen instills to keep the sanctity of marriage intact.

Due to the subject matter of season 5, and the ever-present Princess Diana, the topic of divorce is rife, swindling around Elizabeth like a dog’s tail on fire. It’s perhaps the resounding acceptance that marriage does not have the same significance as it once did in the early 20th century, and the pattern of couples growing apart is the normal catalyst for divorce. In a flawless and daunting manner, The Crown season 5 shows the institution under intense threat, with Royal Members having to keep in check despite their observable suppression.

At ten episodes, season 5 covers a stretch of stories involving the Royal Family, ranging from the fire at Windsor Castle and the derailed marriage of Prince Charles and Princess Diana. Surprise additions include the rise of Mohamed Al-Fayed, and his son, Dodi; their episode, in particular, feels like a filler but is somewhat effective.

Season 5 does feel like a transition at times. It’s almost as if the writers know what is coming in the sixth season, so keep some of the stories at bay, waiting for more divisive debates when the time comes. However, the story of Diana makes season 5 increasingly sensational and a reminder of the scandals that Queen Elizabeth had to face.

The Crown season 5 may be faced with such venom and topics of fact versus fiction, but remove the noise, and you have another incredible drama on your hands.

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