The Crown Episode 1: Heavy Is The Head That Wears The Crown

the-crownBuckingham Palace. Now I don’t know about you, but I have always been intrigued by what lies behind the gates. Maybe that’s why I was willing to sit down for 10 hours and not move as I watched every episode of The Crown.

It’s just so beautiful and so perfect.

So lets dive in to the first episode of the series. It’s hard for me to just talk about how perfect everything  is. But when you re-watch and you start the series that gagging reflex that starts from one of the first scenes. Not going to lie, the first moments made me feel quite ill, because anyone hawking up blood makes my stomach turn. No offense King George.

So we start with Phillip. Like the Duke has always seemed a little off to me, cause you really just don’t ever hear from him. But I never really thought of what he’s gone through.  He’s giving up everything to be with Elizabeth. Renouncing his home, his nationality, his title. All to be with the woman that he love.


Now the Queen that we see on TV today is nothing like the one that we see in The Crown. She’s young, she’s fallen in love for the first time, and she has every dream that she’s ever dreamt still alive in her eyes. She knows how to smile, she knows how to laugh. She just wants to be with the man she loves. She just wants to live.

But from the beginning, one has to wonder if Philip wanted to be anything other than King and live the life that her family and her title avowed to her.

But the current King – Elizabeth’s Daddy – he’s trying to make up for something. For the way he doesn’t feel well, for the stammer that he can’t overcome, for the life that he wasn’t supposed to live.

But he has to put his best foot forward, because it’s his daughters wedding day. The whole country is watching and waiting.

But it’s as we get to the wedding Winston Churchill makes an entrance. He’s the last person there before the King and Elizabeth. He wants to be powerful and it shows. Winston makes sure that all eyes are upon him as he enters the church.

The excitement for Churchill pales in comparison for the arrival of the King and Elizabeth. She looks a little bewildered – like why are all these people here for her? Did she not realize that every little girl wanted to be her. Everyone wants to be a Princess. Who doesn’t want to get married and wear that beautiful dress with that amazing veil. Umm, I know I do!

However, Philip and Elizabeth at the altar – they look like they are being forced up there at gunpoint. Well, Philip looks a little happy, but Elizabeth – the weight of the world is just falling on her shoulders really damn quickly and harshly. Maybe she knew what was coming.

It was the first time that I actually felt like this is just way too much to deal with. I mean I have always gotten it – that we romanticize the idea of being royalty, But I have never really thought about it so much.

the-crownGonna have to admit though, listening to their vows – they are a little archaic. I was shocked that she used the word obey. Cause hey, she knew she was going to be Queen and ultimately he’d have to obey her. Things get worst at the wedding photos. The entire family seems cold and distant. Except her Dad – King George, when he walks in and gives her a gift. A camera. Because he never wants her to “to miss a single thing” if he marriage is as happy as his has been.

One can only hope that it will be.

Now, Elizabeth’s Dad was never meant to be King. His brother was supposed to be King, but he abdicated for love. Love of a woman that was stronger than his love of country. One has to respect that in a way – cause I don’t know about you – I would be a little hesitant to leave my chance to be a ruler for love. But I am a cynic.

So we’re following along and Philip and Elizabeth look to be happy. They are living their life and it’s going pretty well. Philip’s got his Naval career going. They have two kids who seem to be the center of the world. But happiness and a care free life don’t last forever as a call comes from London.

The King is in surgery – which FYI Netflix, could have totally lived without the snipping of the lung out – cause that was kind of graphic and I was trying to eat a steak sandwich. See the King smokes like it’s the only thing that he can do. So of course Elizabeth and Philip have returned to Buckingham Palace to make sure her Papa is okay.

The doctors announce that his surgery is a success, but you can tell by the look on his face that he is hiding something. Everyone is always hiding something.

So fast forward 5 months and they are preparing the King breakfast. He can’t have bacon – which FYI, totes understandable, cause it’s gross. Yes – I hate bacon.

Winston Churchill has won Prime Minister. The King is all for this. Churchill – well, you can tell that he’s still power hungry and trying to prove that he’s got the balls to run this country for forever. But none of the men seem to be in good health. Like does anyone know how to retire? There is no fucking shame in it.

Also – dear Lord people, stop smoking.

So the King and and Churchill have an audience. The King is wearing some makeup to cover up the fact that he just doesn’t feel good. Churchill likes to stand during these things. As if sitting will mean you are weak or something.  They want congratulations for all their achievements instead of just taking pride in what they have. The King talks about breaking in the Princess gently by having her attend meetings.

The thing I love about The Crown is that you see that not everyone always wanted to be in the public eye. Winston Churchill’s wife sure as hell looks like she doesn’t want to be there. she’s over it. But calling Winston out – well, that’s like talking to a wall. It’s like he doesn’t know how to exist with out being in the public eye.

Philip is redoing Clarence House, while Elizabeth is off to have breakfast with her Mum and sister. All I am seeing at this point is Philip is like a really good Dad and Elizabeth just likes to smile at her kids.

Oh, don’t get me started on Princess Margaret. It’s at this breakfast that she’s really giving away the fact that she wants in Peter (her Dad’s right hand man) pants. Like hold back Margaret. He’s a married man. Elizabeth even see’s it. And even thought Elizabeth says that she can see the attraction – WE CAN’T!

So back to  the King has a visit from his doctor and he learns that they decided to keep a big secret from him. They didn’t tell him that he has lung cancer. What the hell was wrong with that doctor? Like give the man honesty. So when he does get it – he lights up right away, again? Dear Lord King. Smoking got you in this mess. Not the best idea.

The King tries to remain strong, but he wants to know how much longer he has. And he can’t get a time. He finds out his family doesn’t know and he doesn’t want them to know. His eyes just suddenly seem empty and full of pain. And our hearts are breaking.

So then it’s Christmas time and you can tell that the Kings heart is heavy.  Philip looks as though he’s being led into hell, which – I mean did he not know what he was marrying into.

But one can’t get past the King and the way that he looks like his heart is about to break into a million pieces. The look of anguish gets worse as carolers come and give him a gift. It’s as if he knows that he needs to take everything in, because who knows how much longer he has. You can’t help but want to hug the poor guy and tell him that it will be okay, even though you know it won’t.

And it gets worse when you see that he’s asking Elizabeth if she wants to know anything. He’s trying to prepare her, without having to say that the time is coming sooner than later. But Elizabeth knows that something is wrong. She can feel it.

Heavy is the heart that wears the crown. There is only so much that she can ask, but her concern is if she is lonely. Her concern is her husband. She asks her father to take him shooting. Her father asks her to go on a Royal Tour for him. Philip doesn’t seem to pleased – he wants to be a Naval Officer. He doesn’t want to, but he gives in and agrees to go.

And you can tell Elizabeth feels relief. As if she’s only ever wanted to please her father. As if his approval is the only thing she’s ever needed.

The next morning the King comes in and wakes up Philip and we get to look at Matt Smith’s perfect bootie. But what happens next is a moment that touched our hearts. The King understands that Philip wants to be a Naval Officer, but the titles – that’s not the job – he reminds him that the job is her.

Yes, the job is Elizabeth. It’s about keeping her happy, about protecting her. That’s what everything is about. And you can tell in the Kings eyes that he’s giving Philip the thing most precious to him – his daughter. Yes, technically he gave her away at the alter, but now – he knows that he won’t be around forever and that he’s giving away what has been his job. To love and protect her.

And that took everything.

The first episode of The Crown is a look at a fathers love for a daughter that he can no longer protect from the life that he hadn’t even imagined for himself, let alone her.

I am addicted.

This series is beautiful.

Lingering Thoughts

  • I can’t stop looking around for why this show cost so much to make. Like I am examining everything. How much were those flowers? How much was the dress? Seriously – was the rental fee on the castle a lot?
  • Philip has some really bad posture.
  • I am all about Elizabeth and Philip though – like when you see them together, you can’t help but love the shit out of them. Especially when he’s stealing glances.
  • I just can’t with the smoking – I wanna like yell at all of them.
  • This is some of the most perfect TV I have ever seen.

The Crown is airing on Netflix now.

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