The second season of The Crown offers ten more episodes into the reign of Queen Elizabeth II and the difficult situations she is placed in, especially when unsure of how to improve her marriage behind the scenes and dealing with everything else motherhood and the crown brings.
This season covers the early part of her reign covering from 1956-1964 finishing with the birth of Prince Edward. Between that time we see the Suez Crisis, retirement of Harold Macmillan who is the third Prime Minister to serve the Queen. John F. Kennedy and Jackie having a state visit and then the rumours of Jackie talking about the Queen ensuring Elizabeth would step out and do something rather out of character and daring. This would then change everything for the Royal Family as everyone had previously known it. As well as the first televised version of the Christmas speech.
This season also takes a massive look at Phillip and the relationship with Elizabeth and the marriage being far from easy. Plenty of hints at many affairs but nothing really confirmed, its more of a make your own mind up thing. I think with this being a huge part of this season is why I never actually reviewed it the first time round. I have since rewatched it all and found it a lot more enjoyable.
Along with that he is away for months on tour and this is actually something that helps the pair. We then get to know more about his up bringing and the tough school life he had in Scotland, which leads him to force Charles to attend. It was a brutal experience and Elizabeth had no choice but to allow her husband to send their son to what he would describe as hell on earth. I have read some background on this and while Prince Charles really hated his time their he has since said that it was blown out of proportion.
I did feel though that this season seemed to be more around Phillip rather than the Queen herself, but I guess he is a massive part of the crown. Something that was hard going was having them admit they were so unhappy yet divorce never being an option for them. As head of the Church of England it is not something Elizabeth would ever be able to do for herself. Something that we already know is very different for her own children. (Wait for season 4 maybe 5 for that?).
Claire Foy and Matt Smith are both again outstanding and work so well together that it is clear to see how comfortable they have become as the royal couple. Watching these episodes you can fully understand just why and how Foy received so many awards and critical acclaim for her transformation to become Queen Elizabeth. It certainly cannot be an easy thing to do, especially when you wonder if the Queen would actually watch any of this or not. Vanessa Kirby is firmly still a favourite character as Princess Margaret.
For season three we will get the first cast change which I guess will be a little bit strange, but at the same time time it also means we will not be getting any odd CGI or make up to age the actors. Another Queen will reign!