Award-winning fictional drama, The Crown, is back this month with their highly anticipated Season Five. In the recently released trailer, Prime Minister John Major (played by Jonny Lee Miller) whispers, “It feels like it’s all about to erupt.” And we couldn’t agree more. The new season brings us into the 1990s, a very dramatic time for the royal family.
The Crown Season 5 premiers November 9th on Netflix. And you won’t want to miss it!
Where Did We Leave Off?
In Season Four, we watched Prince Charles meet and marry Lady Diana Spencer. We commiserated with Diana through bulimia, loneliness, and Camilla Parker Bowles. We met (and then later set goodbye to) Margaret Thatcher—Britain’s first female Prime Minister who, among other things, led the country into the Falklands war. Season 4 ended with the royal family gathering around the monarch for a Christmas photo at Balmoral. We stole one last look at Diana, standing to the side with tears in her eyes and feeling very much like an outsider before the screen darkened. The drama, the emotions, and the glamour, left us wanting more. And now it’s right around the corner!
What Can We Expect?
The first official trailer shows Windsor castle in flames, the continued affair between Camilla and Charles, and Diana removing her famous sapphire and diamond engagement ring.
Season 5 is set during the tenure of Prime Minister John Major (1990-1997), the first PM younger than the Queen. Although he was known as the grey man of British politics, The Crown Season 5 promises to be equally colorful as the first four seasons.
In a 1992 speech for her Ruby Jubilee (the 40th anniversary of her accession to the throne), Queen Elizabeth II states: “1992 is not a year on which I shall look back with undiluted pleasure. In the words of one of my more sympathetic correspondents, it has turned out to be an ‘Annus Horribilis’.” This speech, given shortly after Windsor Castle caught on fire, eventually led to Queen Elizabeth II opening Buckingham Palace to the public for the first time for needed funds to pay for the restoration.
Also around this time, all three of her majesty’s children suffer marital struggles. Prince Andrew and Fergie’s split gained a lot of unwanted media coverage, and Princess Anne officially divorced Mark Phillips after a long separation. But my guess is that Charles and Diana’s beyond-repair marriage and Charles’ affair with Camilla will dominate the screen.
Who Will We See?
Every two seasons, the cast refreshes. For the third (and most likely last) casting switch, we’re in for yet another treat!
Queen Elizabeth II: Imelda Staunton will replace Olivia Colman. Staunton is best known to all you Harry Potter fans as playing the role of Dolores Umbridge.
Princess Diana: Elizabeth Debicki steps in for Emma Corrin. Debicki’s been seen in The Great Gatsby, Widows, and Tenet.
Prince Charles: Dominic West, best known for his role as Jimmy McNulty in The Wire and Noah Solloway in The Affair, takes the place of Josh O’Connor.
Camilla Parker Bowles: Olivia Williams replaces Emerald Fennell. Williams has appeared in Lucky Break, An Education, The Ghost Writer, and The Sixth Sense.
Princess Margaret: Lesley Manville takes over for Helena Bonham Carter. She has five Bafta nominations, one Oscar nomination, and is best known for roles in Phantom Thread, River, Another Year, Mum, and Maleficent.
Prince Philip: Game of Thrones fans will recognize Jonathan Pryce right away. He’ll be replacing Tobias Menzies this season.
Prime Minister John Major: Jonny Lee Miller, from Trainspotting and Elementary (among many others!), enters the scene.
Season 5 of The Crown returns to Netflix on November 9, 2022. And we’ll be watching!