The Crown’s fourth season has been making headlines this fall for the secrets and gossip they’ve been spilling about Princess Diana, Prince Charles, and the rest of the royal family.
Although pretty much everyone is obsessing over the drama-filled season, some are concerned that viewers are struggling to determine fact versus fiction.
The United Kingdom’s culture secretary Oliver Dowden is particularly unhappy with how the events have been depicted — noting that he’s worried younger fans of the show will not recognize the dramatized plot points.
“It’s a beautifully produced work of fiction, so as with other TV productions, Netflix should be very clear at the beginning it is just that,” he told the Daily Mail. “Without this, I fear a generation of viewers who did not live through these events may mistake fiction for fact.”
This season highlights the early relationship between Prince Charles and Princess Diana, and the impending collapse of their marriage as Charles pursues his relationship with Camilla Parker-Bowles
The series also includes plots regarding the rule of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, her relationship with Queen Elizabeth II, the Queen’s relationship with her husband and children, and the declining mental health of Princess Margaret, the Queen’s sister.
“I think it would help The Crown an enormous amount if, at the beginning of each episode, it stated that: ‘This isn’t true but it is based around some real events,’” Dowden also told ITV last week.
Although conversations have been dramatized and some events have been fictionalized, much of the show is true to reality, including Diana’s notorious fashion choices and several elements of her marriage to Charles — making the entire season seem believable.
Netflix does not generally add a disclaimer to their fictional content and The Crown’s creator Peter Morgan has never claimed that his show is entirely based on history.
Dowden is also reportedly set to write to Netflix this week to formally request a “health warning” before every episode.
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