The Crown, episode ten

Philip is up early and exercising. He mucks up his neck and needs to see a specialist for her. They talk about all sorts of things and eventually the doctor invites him to a party.

A year lady there is a woman being asked about several Soviets. She isn’t saying anything. They want to know about the party. There is a man with his back to the camera. They want an ID but she doesn’t give one.

Macmillian talks about it. Government types think it is a foreign minister that Macmillian thinks the minister in question is innocent. Margaret is doing construction. Elizabeth has to mediate. Her doctor comes in. Good news, she’s expecting though her iron levels are low.

She goes to tell Philip but he’s not there. Turns out he’s at a weekend house party, even if it is only Wednesday. The doctor, Ward, is brought in by police. He admits that he introduced the foreign minister to a call girl and a Russian spy. He’ll be resigning shortly.

Tony has been handling a lot of foreign assignments. It’s good for the marriage. Elizabeth goes to see Margaret about the construction noise. She finds out that Margaret is pregnant too. They talk about the latest news.

Apparently the minister admitted to an affair but he’s not the mystery man in the photo. Margaret thinks it is Philip. Elizabeth meets with Macmillian who tries to resign. She refuses to accept it. She will be taking leave to Scotland because of the pregnancy.

There is a theater production poking fun at the queen and the government. Macmillian’s wife found it funny and tells him to see it. Elizabeth is excited to see Philip packing. She thinks that he is going with her. He’s not. She takes a jab but they still part ways.

Macmillian goes to see the show and gets called out. Elizabeth takes the train to Scotland. Ward is on trial. Elizabeth is asleep when Michael comes in. He needs her for a few things. Run of the mill charitable paperwork but there is something else.

Ward took his own life and the investigation into his estate revealed a link to Philip. Elizabeth is not happy about it. Then she gets news that Macmillian is resigning. She goes to see him but she can’t talk him out of it.

Philip gets back to Buckingham and finds Margaret and Tony but no Elizabeth. She appointed a new PM and then ran back to Scotland and her selection isn’t going over well. Philip takes the train to see her but she would prefer to be alone.

The next day they fight. He says that he knows she is under a lot of stress but some people are there for her. She doesn’t think he is. They fight about Ward and the truth. She would rather the truth even if it hurts but he is a mystery man. He says that he’s hers. She has the baby, Prince Edward. Margaret has hers. They sit for a family portrait.

Elizabeth is trapped and Philip is awful. That’s basically the moral of the story right? None of them are happy. They probably don’t even like each other. They are stuck.

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The Crown, episode nine

Elizabeth gets an update on Charles’ schooling. It’s time to select a senior school and she thinks Eton is the right choice. He seems thrilled at the prospect but Philip isn’t having it. His son will go to Gordonstoun, where he went.

Philip wasn’t thrilled to be carted off to the Scottish Highlands in his day either. He wanted to stay in Germany but that wasn’t an option. He flies his son up to the school himself.

Elizabeth watches news reports about just how grueling this school will be. Charles gets to school and has a bit of trouble settling in much the same as Philip did. Mountbatten goes to visit and finds out that Charles is miserable he reports back to Elizabeth.

She is beside herself and wants to pull him out and bring him home, for the sake of the crown. Philip isn’t hearing it. They agreed that he would be responsible for Charles’s education.

At Gordonstoun, Philip fights with other kids. He begs his sister to let him spend the holiday with her. He’s doing work when he gets summoned to the headmaster’s office. His sister and nephews and her husband died. He has to go back to Berlin for the funerals.

He does and his father is there. He blames Philip for their deaths. Philip goes back to school and is a mess. He is up at all hours and builds the front gate alone. He struggles and eventually asks for help. Only then does the headmaster have the other boys help him.

It’s the day of the annual challenge. Philip is there to judge it and Charles competes. He doesn’t do well. In fact he doesn’t even finish. He hides instead. On the flight back to London Philip yells at Charles to stop being so weak.

I think this was supposed to make me feel bad for Philip. It didn’t. He’s a dick. I did feel bad for Charles though. And Elizabeth. I’m glad Charles sent William and Harry to Eton.

The Crown, episode eight

The African nations are banding together to rebel against the monarchy and it’s abuse. Elizabeth is out in the country talking about trees in the field. She goes inside and talks to her mother about being middle-aged. She has to head back to London though. The Kennedy’s are coming for dinner.

Macmillian comes to update on Ghana. Russia is getting involved so he will talk to Kennedy about it. Elizabeth seems a bit intimidated by all things Jackie Kennedy and is annoyed that Philip causes such a fuss about the seating.

Introductions are a train wreck and Elizabeth is jealous as she watches Philip chat with Jackie. After the meal, she gives Jackie a tour and is utterly charmed. She tells Margaret as much. Margaret implies that it wasn’t a two-way street though.

Apparently a friend of hers overheard Jackie talking about it at a restaurant days later. She called Elizabeth and the Palace second-rate and dilapidated and unintelligent. Elizabeth is pissed.

News out of Ghana suggests the Russians are not involved which means the Americans won’t get involved. Elizabeth decides to be proactive and demands to go to Ghana herself. She goes and finds out that they’ve been played. Soviet engineers are in town to work on the dam.

Elizabeth spends the afternoon thinking and comes up with a plan of her own. At the state dinner, she dances a foxtrot with the president. It works. He stays in line. In DC, Kennedy thanks his wife but she’s confused as to why. He tells her the insults that may have gotten back to the queen.

She never said that and even goes so far as to arrange a private audience the next time she is in England. It’s held at Windsor Castle though because sometimes only a fortress will do. The guard is marching and all that other stuff. Elizabeth is ready to intimidate.

Jackie goes through with it and apologies. She says that there are no excuses but does offer an explanation. She was on drugs when she made the statements and she feels bad that she offended someone she admires. Elizabeth tells Philip about it. She feels guilty that she just took the apology and didn’t say anything more. He tells her not to worry.

Months later, Elizabeth is in the forest when she is summoned back to the house immediately. JFK has been shot. Elizabeth is glued to the television and the radio to see the developments.

Kennedy dies and Jackie leaves Dallas with the body, still dressed in the same clothes. Elizabeth calls for a week of mourning and for the bells to be rung at Westminster Abbey.

This was really sad across the board. I feel bad for Jackie for having to deal with that and for Elizabeth for feeling like she didn’t measure up. It’s a shame that it took such a tragedy to make Elizabeth do it but it was a nice gesture that she broke protocol for the bells.

The Crown, episode seven

Peter wakes up. As does Margaret. The latter has some mail though with her breakfast. She reads the letter from Peter. He tells her that he plans to propose to another woman and he’s sorry if this upsets her.

Margaret talks to Tony about it and then proposes to him herself. He blows her off because he has a gallery opening. She gets mad and leaves which puts his opening in a bit of a bind.

Tony later has a tense dinner with his mother. He tells her what happened and she calls him a fool. He has a threesome and talks to his partners about her. They tell him not to give her up. He woos her and then let’s her snoop through his stuff. He’s planted a ring and proposes.

He hates the idea of marriage but he hates the idea of losing her more. He promises never to hurt her. She goes and tells Elizabeth and gets her blessing. Elizabeth has something to say too but Margaret cuts her off. She wants her announcement out before Peter’s. Tony calls his mother but she won’t come to the phone.

Elizabeth tells Michael to expect to make plans while Margaret and Tony plan the wedding. Margaret goes to discuss the announcement with Elizabeth and finds out it will need to be delayed because Elizabeth is pregnant. Naturally is pissed but Elizabeth tries to be sympathetic.

While chatting with his friends, Tony talks about how this marriage will earn him a title and perhaps respect within his family. Elizabeth is very pregnant and getting ready for the party when Philip starts asking her questions about being pregnant.

The party is a mix of Margaret’s people and Tony’s people. It’s far more irreverent than usual. Oh and Tony finds out he got some other woman pregnant. Philip is raging. He has a royal lineage and was barely accepted. He does not think Tony is appropriate. Elizabeth asks Michael to look into him.

She gets briefed by Tommy about Tony’s various liaisons, with members of both sexes. She goes in to labor and everyone waits. She has a son and the crowd goes wild. He’s Andrew after Philip’s father. Margaret asks for permission to announce the engagement.

Elizabeth grants it but does ask if she’s sure. Margaret gets defense and Elizabeth tries to explain herself. They don’t agree. It’s wedding day and people throughout the country are getting ready. Philip accompanies Margaret. Tony rides with his mother who says that she hopes he didn’t do this for her.

I feel bad for Margaret. I have for most of this show but she is a bit headstrong and she should have maybe given it pause since he was so ambivalent at first. Elizabeth is stuck on this stuff all the time. She seems happy about the baby though.

The Crown, episode six

The forests of Germany in 1945. Allied soldiers are digging for something. A box. They take it back to base. It’s full of film that is promptly sent home to be translated. They are brought to Churchill and from there to the King.

Elizabeth and her mother watch Billy Graham on television. The former is a fan, the latter not so much. The Duke of Windsor is less than pleased with the way his life is playing out. He wants to serve his country and has already talked to his lawyer about going to London.

During her briefing, Elizabeth finds out she will be opening Gatwick. She wants to meet Rev. Graham and wants Michael to make it happen. He has a bit of news too. David wants to come back. Elizabeth allows it.

Some historians come across the document that Churchill and the King covered up. They want it published but the higher ups say their hands are tied. The Americans aren’t and they have duplicate files. They will publish.

David gets to his friend’s house in Sussex where they talk about his job prospects. It looks good. Philip is not thrilled about seeing Graham but Elizabeth is. She finds him handsome and loves his sermon. She chats with him afterward about beings a simple Christian.

Macmillian is chatting with Cabinet about Graham when the head historian turns up. The matter is urgent and they get to work right away. David meets with his friends again to talk about possible job ideas.

Left with no choice, Macmillian brings information to Elizabeth about the file, the Marburg file. She hears some from him but turns to her mother and Michael for the whole story. The information that the allied troops dug up were valuable Nazi files that a German solider saved to barter for his own freedom.

The file shows a link between the Nazis and David. They tell her the Brits tried to bury it but the Americans have a copy that they are willing to release. Elizabeth reads the file. David meets with the foreign minister about a job. They found something. He just needs the blessing of the crown so heads to Buckingham Palace.

Things don’t go as planned. David mentions the jobs and Elizabeth says that while he would probably do well in those posts but she’s not going to allow it because of the Marburg file. He pleads his case. She’s unsure and talks to Philip about it. He doesn’t think David deserves anything and suggests she talk to Tommy.

She takes that advice and heads over to see Tommy. He breaks it down for Elizabeth. David was a rat. He helped cause the fall of Paris and was willing to turn England over to Hitler in exchange for taking back the title of king.

Elizabeth thinks about it but does not grant David’s request. The historians get the go ahead to print the file. Elizabeth talks to Graham about forgiveness. She gets to her quarters and finds a drunk Philip. He indulged with her mother and Tommy. They are proud of her for kicking David out. Philip climbs into bed with her.

Is all that stuff about David true? I mean, they had those pictures of him and Hitler but all that stuff Tommy said? I might look into this. I had no idea.

The Crown, episode five

It seems the queen has a critic in the press. Some are happy about it but others are not. One man goes out of his way to punch the writer and Elizabeth is pleased by the news. That night she watches him on television with Philip and her mother.

Altrincham, the writer, runs a periodical and wants to express his opinions. His staff is less interested than usual. Elizabeth is set to give a speech the following week. Martin is worried it strikes the wrong tone but Tommy is not.

Ahead of the trip to Jaguar, Elizabeth gets a new hairstyle. It’s practical and tidy. Philip is less than thrilled. They get there and take a tour before Elizabeth gives a rather awful speech. Altrincham runs to work and crafts an immediate response. His typist doesn’t seem to love it.

Elizabeth stays in the mountains and goes to shoot some birds. The next day Altrincham’s article hits the papers. Elizabeth isn’t happy and her mother is disgusted by it. Altrincham calls his staff together. He’s got the television interview offer.

They discuss it and he goes on to try to speak his piece. He does well. It’s the show that Elizabeth watches with Philip and her mother. The next day the reviews side with Altrincham. Elizabeth is pissed.

She trusted the old white dude’s and it came back to bite her. Now she has to figure out how to handle this. The palace reaches out to Altrincham to arrange a sit down and he accepts. He thinks that he is meeting with an underling.

He’s not though. Elizabeth turns up to talk to him and gets sassy. He offers suggestions at ger request and she is not happy with them. She sends him into the hall and talks to Martin. Then Altrincham is brought back in to talk to Martin.

The palace will deny that he ever met the queen but will take his recommendations into consideration. It’s Christmas. They are going to televise the speech, as Altrincham suggested. She’s nervous but it goes well.

Six months later, they welcome some common folk to the palace. Philip and Margaret talk about her hair and Tony. The Queen Mother sees the whole thing as a spectacle, the beginning of the end of the monarchy.

I didn’t know this was all because of one dude. I kind of love Altrincham now. He was really just trying to be helpful and maybe this isn’t exactly how it played out but I like to think it is.

The Crown, episode four

Wedding bells are ringing and Margaret gets to bear witness. She’s not thrilled with it and tells an old friend that’s also there as much. He proposes and she basically accepts. Meanwhile Elizabeth and Philip are in bed talking about hitting their stride at the ten year mark.

The phone rings. It’s Margaret. She fills Elizabeth in on the wedding prospect and asks for permission to wed Billy Wallace in a roundabout way. Elizabeth, Philip, Macmillan and his wife watch the news of Sputnik.

Margaret gets her official portrait taken. She’s not happy about that either. There’s a party. Wallace is there and he’s quite popular with the ladies. That makes the other guys angry. Margaret is getting ready to go announce their engagement when she finds out Wallace has been hurt.

She hurries over to find out that he was shot in the leg during a duel because he was being a cad at the party. She calls him a disgrace and calls the engagement off. She’s late to dinner and cries during Philip’s toast to Elizabeth.

It’s just a bad night for Margaret and her morning isn’t much better. Her mother is incessant so she calls a friend to complain and ends up going to a dinner party. She ends up spending much of the night with photographer Antony Armstrong-Jones.

The next morning Margaret reports back to Elizabeth about her evening and Tony. She liked him and thinks Elizabeth would too. She sits for him to photograph and he talks about how she doesn’t know who she is and her family.

He wraps up and invites her for a drink. She goes up to his place for the drink and then they go to his dark room to develop the photos. She realizes that he’s not queer. He’s got a whole routine and she played right into it. Instead of going home with her driver, she goes on his motorcycle.

Margaret is totally smitten. Philip and Elizabeth are beat from their official business with the Malaysian leaders. Margaret is on a high. She asked Tony to send the photo to someone and he followed through. Soon enough her portrait with her naked shoulder is in the paper.

Things must be tough for Margaret. She didn’t sign up for any of this. She just wanted to marry Peter and things got all wonky from there. I do feel bad for her. She might have met her match though.