THIS POST CONTAINS SPOILERS.
In this episode we see Philip trying to assert some power as Elizabeth begins her new role. Along side this we have Churchill trying to delay the coronation and the disgraced brother of King George arrives.
Right from the start you can see how Elizabeth is taking everything one step at a time. She clearly isn’t sure on what she needs to do, and she’s only taking in information as it comes at her. That’s not to say that she hasn’t prepared in some way, but everything has been thrown on her so suddenly and you can see that struggle. That just adds to Claire Foy’s amazing acting, she just has to give a look or act a certain way and you know exactly what Elizabeth is feeling.
Not only is some of it down to her being thrown in to the role, but also because some steps aren’t so easy and serve as a reminder that her father is gone, like when she had to unlock the box and take out the papers inside.
I’ll give Elizabeth credit though. The second she realises she will have to wait 16 months before being crowned she’s not at all happy. She seems to have been in the mind set of 5 months at most, possibly not even that, to prepare for her role before being crowned. That shows that despite the fact she’s learning on the go, and struggling a little, she’s all but willing to try. Also, later on when she stands up to Churchill and negotiates the things she wants, you can already see her learning to stand up and speak, instead of keeping quiet.
The whole thing doesn’t seem very easy for Phillip either, but that’s clearly for very different reasons. Also, can we talk about how cute that moment was with Charles in his toy car, beeping the little horn, and Philip smiling and pointing at him? We see more moments like that one throughout, and it’s not new to the series either.
So far the acting is yet to disappoint. This episode sees the introduction of Alex Jennings as King Edward, and he does an equally fantastic job and plays off the others so well. You can just feel the growing tension between Edward and the others, and it’s so clear without anyone have to open their mouth, that he’s despised by a lot of them.
Although that scene where Elizabeth and Edward are alone, talking and eating, it was a great moment. It was surprisingly intense because sometimes it was lighthearted and other times it was rather sad. You get some insight into how Elizabeth felt growing up with her father being King, and you can see the realisation hit Edward that maybe he had done something wrong, and he’s not the only one who suffered because of what happened.
The funeral was shot so beautifully. The initial lighting, dark with low saturation, fitted in so well with the overall feeling. Even as the lighting became brighter it still stuck to that sorrow and dramatic feel, most in thanks to the music and the voice over. The camera angle of Elizabeth dropping the dirt into the grave and covering up the camera, instead of having it fade simply to black, was one of my favourite shots.
The scene with Edward and his wife dancing was another beautiful shot. The sound the music and the way the light shone through the windows. It all just blended together so well.
Every episode seems to end on a very large and dramatic note. This episode we had Phillip’s upset over Elizabeth choosing to keep the name Windsor instead of taking his, plus the factor of them having to move to Buckingham palace. And as a whole the episode ends with her speech about the whole thing and how everyone, male or female, will take the name. It creates this consistency. Whenever an episode ends it makes you want to go on to the next.