The long-awaited trailer for the third season of the critically acclaimed Netflix series The Crown is finally out. After two seasons of exploration into the relationships within the royal family, political scandals and personal transformations of the beloved characters, what can we expect from this coming season?
With a complete cast change fitting to the passing of time between the coming season and the previous two, the show acknowledges the theme of transition and change. The suspense held within the uncertain future for Britain and the remaining tension within the royal family are heightened with the omnipresent ticking of a clock and steady rhythm in the official trailer, as bits of the story are unveiled to a ceremonious cover of Bob Dylan’s ‘The Times They Are a-Changin’.
The trailer starts with the 1977 Jubilee celebrations for Queen Elizabeth II (Olivia Colman), yet the Queen herself expresses her self-doubt and wariness at Britain’s age of decline. Established motifs of the enigmatic relationships Elizabeth has with her sister Princess Margaret (Helena Bonham Carter) and her husband Prince Philip (Tobias Menzies) seem to remain rooted. New relationships, dynamics and events emerge as it also touches upon Harold Wilson’s election and his subsequent relationship towards the monarchs, as well as exploring the miners’ strikes and Prince Charles’ (Josh O’Connor) early romance with Camila Shand (Emerald Fennell). It is obvious that showrunner Peter Morgan wants both change and continuity in this upcoming season of The Crown.
The third and fourth series are expected to span across 1964-76, with the main focus shifted from the complex companionship of the Queen and Prince Philip to the budding romance of Prince Charles and Camilla, the decaying marriage of Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon and Elizabeth’s anchored partnership with Prime Minister Harold Wilson, confirmed by Morgan. Iconic historical events such as the 1969 moon landing, the decolonisation of Africa and the Caribbean, and the birth of Prince Edward will be covered as well.
It has become clear that the story of Prince Charles and Camilla will be explored as he is offered two pieces of advice: ‘Never turn your back on true love’ and ‘Watch out for your family’. The tone is deepened further when Prince Charles is shown nervously walking down a path alongside the line ‘your sons and your daughters are beyond your command’ being sung in the background, and an argument breaks out between Queen Elizabeth and her eldest son in which Prince Charles expresses his frustration towards his family’s treatment of him (‘Am I listened to in this family? Am I seen for who and what I am? No’). Fans have quickly latched onto the idea of Charles’ marriage prospects, the introduction of Camilla and maybe even Diana being explored in the series, as any topic surrounding these three figures have always been controversial.
Despite Charles and Camilla’s feelings about their relationship, the public has crowned Princess Diana as The People’s Princess with her charisma, kindness and acts of defiance against the royal protocol, which greatly appealed to the people. Making bold fashion choices such as showing off her shoulders and donning black dresses outside of funerals, omitting ‘obey’ from her wedding vows, prioritising taking care of her sons before royal duties and being committed to her charitable causes like shaking hands with an HIV positive patient, which was considered a taboo during the AIDs epidemic, are only a few things to illustrate why she was so beloved. Diana and Charles’ marriage went further under public scrutiny when it was revealed that the latter had been ‘more than friends’ with Camilla over the years; as Diana herself put it in a 1995 BBC interview, ‘there were three of
in [their] marriage, so it was a bit crowded.’
Diana’s attributes and her victim status in her marriage with Charles, his alleged affairs and his relationship with Camilla are frequently brought up in casual conversations about royal scandals, so it is no wonder that fans are excited to see what this season discusses regarding these three people. The line ‘it is not a choice, it is a duty’ encapsulates the series’ themes, motifs and the dilemmas the beloved characters often find themselves in and draws up a vivid full stop for the trailer as it becomes the new ‘The Crown must win. Must always win’, giving us a taste of the glorious prospects for the new season.
The Crown will return to Netflix on 17th November
Image Credit: Netflix