Commoners around the world may never have gotten to know the real Queen Elizabeth II during her 70-year reign before her death on Thursday.
But the Emmy-winning Netflix hit “The Crown” gave us a glimpse of the monarch who’s been portrayed on the show by Claire Foy, Olivia Colman and now Imelda Staunton. Still, the show used a healthy dose of creative license to take us behind the walls of Buckingham Palace and through the history of the late Queen’s reign.
In fact, series creator Peter Morgan admitted that he “made up” scenes, while a Palace source accused the show of “trolling on a Hollywood budget”.
Still, “The Crown” – which will return in November with its fifth season – had enough respect for the Queen to have a plan in place in the event of her death: the series halted production for at least a week while filming the season 6. , to be released in 2023.
Until the royal family is back in all their streaming glory on “The Crown,” we’re breaking down what was fact versus fiction in reference to Queen Elizabeth II’s most memorable moments.
Yes, the queen talked her cousin out of a coup
During the third season of ‘The Crown’, Lord Mountbatten – the Queen’s second cousin once removed, who was also the maternal uncle of Prince Philip affectionately known as ‘Uncle Dickie’ – was approached by a group plotting to depose Prime Minister Harold Wilson. Although the show stretched the truth for dramatic effect, the intense intervention the Queen staged with Mountbatten may very well have happened. “It was not [Baron] Solly Zuckerman who dissuaded Mountbatten from staging a coup and making himself president of Britain,” said historian Alex von Tunzelmann in “Indian Summer: The Secret History of the End of an Empire,” quoting a Buckingham Palace source, who reportedly said, “It was the Queen herself.”
No, the Queen did not disguise Winston Churchill
Season two of ‘The Crown’ depicts a young queen who berated Prime Minister Churchill – as well as Lord Salisbury – for conspiring to cover up the leader’s diminished abilities after he suffered a stroke in the summer of 1953. But when Churchill’s private secretary, ‘Jock’ Colville, published his memoirs in 1985, it was revealed that the Queen was not so cruel. In fact, she allegedly wrote him a letter expressing concern for the Prime Minister’s health .
Yes, an intruder really surprised the queen in bed
In a complete breakdown of Her Majesty’s security details, a Briton named Michael Fagan entered Queen Elizabeth’s Buckingham Palace bedroom in 1982. “I was scarier than I had ever been in my life,” Fagan said. in a 2012 interview with the Independent. “Then she speaks, and it’s like the most beautiful glass you could imagine breaking: ‘Wawrt are you doing here?! “She walked past me and ran out of the room, her little bare feet running across the floor.”
No, the Queen did not confront Philip about his alleged infidelities
While there was abundant rumors, there is no evidence that the monarch’s beloved Prince Philip – who preceded the Queen in death in April 2021 – ever cheated on his wife, let alone called him out on it. But their marriage wasn’t perfect either, as season 1 of “The Crown” accurately portrays. During their royal tour of the Commonwealth in 1954, cameras caught the normally composed couple in the middle of a big fight outside their Australian cottage. ‘I’m sorry for this little interlude but, as you know, it happens in every marriage,’ the Queen reportedly said, as royal press secretary Richard Colville picked up the offending footage from the team. filming before they could ever be seen. .
Yes, the Queen had secret cousins in a mental institution
In Season 4 of ‘The Crown’, the Queen and Princess Margaret are revealed to have secret cousins hidden in mental institutions. At a time when disabled children shamed families, the young girls, who could not speak, were admitted to the Royal Earlswood Asylum for Mental Defectives in Surrey in 1941 by their parents – the Queen Mother’s older brother and his wife . And to keep everything top secret, the two first cousins - Nerissa Bowes-Lyon and Katherine Bowes-Lyon – were listed as dead in a guidebook to the British aristocracy, even though they were still very much alive. But the queen never commented on the revelation.
Yes, Jackie Kennedy really hurt the Queen
Oh no, she didn’t! That’s what viewers must have thought when Jackie Kennedy talked about the Queen in season 2 of “The Crown.” The outrageous sweeps took place during a dinner at Buckingham Palace with the Queen and Prince Philip welcoming President Kennedy and the First Lady. In the episode, Her Majesty takes tea over dinner which Kennedy rejected her, calling her “so incurious, unintelligent and unremarkable middle-aged woman that Britain’s new small place in the world does not was not a surprise but a fatality”. But while the Kennedy dish was true, the Queen probably wouldn’t have found out until long after that dinner had been digested.
Yes, the Queen publicly berated Margaret Thatcher over apartheid
Season 4 of ‘The Crown’ showed there was no love lost between the Queen and Prime Minister Thatcher. And their ideological differences came to a head when Britain was the only Commonwealth nation not to impose economic sanctions on South Africa in opposition to apartheid. The Queen was so against Thatcher’s general stance of not imposing economic sanctions that she considered canceling one of their weekly meetings. And then an article appeared in The Sunday Times in which an anonymous Palace source said the Queen was “appalled” by the Iron Lady’s lack of compassion for people.