The Crown (2016– )
4 user 17 critic

Wolferton Splash 

A young Princess Elizabeth marries Prince Philip. As King George VI's health worsens, Winston Churchill becomes Prime Minister for the second time.


Stephen Daldry


Peter Morgan (created by), Peter Morgan | 2 more credits »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Claire Foy ... Princess Elizabeth
Matt Smith ... Philip, Duke of Edinburgh
Victoria Hamilton ... Queen Elizabeth
Jared Harris ... King George VI
Vanessa Kirby ... Princess Margaret
Eileen Atkins ... Queen Mary
Harriet Walter ... Clemmie Churchill
John Lithgow ... Winston Churchill
Jeremy Northam ... Anthony Eden
Billy Jenkins ... Prince Charles
Clive Francis ... Lord Salisbury
Nicholas Rowe ... Jock Colville
Pip Torrens ... Tommy Lascelles
Harry Hadden-Paton ... Martin Charteris
Ben Miles ... Peter Townsend


In 1947 Prince Philip of Greece renounces his foreign titles to marry Princess Elizabeth, elder daughter of George VI. Her mother and Grandmother are less than complimentary about his family whilst the appearance of Shadow leader Winston Churchill at the lavish wedding sets his rivals whispering that it is a show of politics. Following a general election Churchill is prime minister once more - to the delight of the king, who confides in him that he has lung cancer, but urges him to keep it a secret and Christmas passes without the family being informed. However George asks Elizabeth to represent him on an upcoming Commonwealth tour, whilst Elizabeth is asked to keep another secret by her sister Margaret, who is in love with commoner Peter Townsend. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | History


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Parents Guide:

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Release Date:

4 November 2016 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Left Bank Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
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Did You Know?


Near the end of the episode, Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, asks his children if they'd like to play "Grandma's Footsteps." The Doctor Who monster species called the Weeping Angels are based on this game. Matt Smith, who plays Philip, also played the 11th Doctor for 3 seasons. See more »


Elizabeth asks Philip to stop smoking, as she hated it. The real Elizabeth was not averse to smoking. She used to smoke herself, but only in private. See more »


Peter Townsend: It was a young lady named Sally / Who enjoyed the occasional dally / She sat on the lap / Of a well-endowed chap, / And cried: "Sir, you're right up my alley!"
King George VI: There was an old countess of Bray, / - And you may think it odd when I say - / That despite her high station, / Rank, and education, / She always spelled "cunt" with a K.
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I Vow To Thee, My Country
Lyrics by Cecil Spring-Rice
Music by Gustav Holst
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User Reviews

A very smooth start.
4 November 2016 | by TouchTheGarlicProductionSee all my reviews

A heavy burden falls on the first episode of a series, particularly a complex slow-burn character drama like this one. My main worry with this series was that it would be difficult to get into; that learning about all the people would be a chore and that it wouldn't do enough to hook me. This episode allayed my fears. On a surface level, there isn't a whole lot that happens in it. But the acting and writing ooze subtext and convey a full and compelling arc about denial and mortality. It may not have many huge "events", yet it is great television. I hope the rest of the season continues the marvellous subtlety and casually gripping quality of the first episode.

The show opens with King George in a bathroom coughing up blood. He is told that it's "just the cold weather". These opening moments convey the story of the entire episode; the King's health is declining yet he and others are in denial about it. The importance of an opening scene is often underestimated, yet here it is used perfectly, conveying the overall message of the entire episode.

A few other things I appreciated were the performances (particularly John Lithgow as Churchill), the attention to detail in costume and set, the cinematography, and the score. All the elements came together really well in the episode.

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