Premiered: November 4, 2016
Starring: Claire Foy, Matt Smith, Vanessa Kirby, Eileen Atkins, Jeremy Northam, Victoria Hamilton, Ben Miles, Greg Wise, Jared Harris, John Lithgow, Alex Jennings, Lia Williams & Stephen Dillane
The world was shaken when King Edward VIII (Alex Jennings) abdicated the throne to his brother George (Jared Harris) to marry American divorcee Wallis Simpson (Lia Williams). Fortunately, because of this, England inherited the future Queen Elizabeth II (Claire Foy).
The first season of the show covers the gradual taking over of the crown as King George’s health declines to his death in 1952 when Elizabeth fully succeeds. At the start of her reign, she struggles with the responsibilities, especially when it comes to her sister’s (Vanessa Kirby) love life.
Foy and John Lithgow (as Winston Churchill) give monumental performances. Their presence is so strong on screen that having them in the same scene is a tour de force. Matt Smith is equally incredible and despicable as Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
Final say: A beautiful and powerful show. ★★★★★