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New series ‘The Crown’ reigns drama over all of Netflix

Netflix has recently released the first season of its new period drama, “The Crown.”

Season one follows Queen Elizabeth II, the current Queen of England, in the early days of her reign.

Every frame is regal and downright beautiful. From the palace to the costumes, the show exudes grace and refined taste.

The actors each bring to life believable and deeply compelling characters based on real life people — which is no easy task.

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Claire Foy plays the young Queen Elizabeth II. She carries herself with the grace of a real monarch and is so sincere in her delivery that she makes the series feel like a documentary.

Her on-screen partner is Matt Smith, who plays her husband Philip Mountbatten, Duke of Edinburgh.

The former star of “Doctor Who” plays a starkly different character from the fun-loving Doctor, and it is refreshing to see him exercise those acting chops. John Lithgow brings an old and hardened Winston Churchill to life and makes him almost lovable.

The show’s timeline begins with the wedding of Princess Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh.

The first episode introduces all the major characters and their conflicts — most remarkably done when Winston Churchill goes into a fit of cursing at the Princess’ wedding over her choice of husband.

The health of King George VI is what really draws the audience’s attention. From the start, his health steadily declines, and a great amount of emphasis in the first episode is placed on the final months of his life.

All this is drawing the audience in even before Princess Elizabeth becomes Queen Elizabeth II.

As she ascends to the throne, the audience watches her come to grips with her position and sees the pull between family and duty. Elizabeth starts as a sort of weak protagonist — the only real grievance with the show — and steadily becomes a more apt leader and stronger person.

Her strength grows as she experiences different conflicts with the Prime Minister, her husband and other family members.

“The Crown” is worth watching for many reasons, but Elizabeth’s growth as a person, a mother and a queen is what will keep audiences intrigued.

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