Anyone who was a fan of "Downtown Abbey" needs to stop whatever they are doing and catch up on Season 1 of Netflix's "The Crown" before Season 2 premieres on December 8! If you are not familiar with the show, it chronicles the early like of Queen Elizabeth II (played by Claire Foy), taking you back to the world of post-World War II royal glamour in a time when no questions were asked and the stability of the monarchy and its global empire was not in question. Princess Elizabeth ascends to the throne, and we follow her on a world tour visiting Britain's imperial outposts while struggling to balance her identity as wife, mother, and sister, with that of a monarch and head of state.
Season 2 will recount a very different and profoundly turbulent period for the Mountbatten-Windsor family. The 1956 Suez Crisis is in full swing and Britain struggles to lead an illegal war in Egypt. The 1960s usher in a new revolutionary era around the world when people, especially youths, begin questioning authority and the status quo. The Season 2 trailer shows us how the Queen attempts to keep her world in order as the empire she is meant to rule crumbles beneath her.
Although Claire Foy has been acting since 2008, and "The Crown" is not the first time she has taken on royal roles (she played Anne Boleyn in the drama series "Wolf Hall" in 2015), her performance as Queen Elizabeth has won her much critical acclaim, as well as Best Actress at the 23rd Screen Actors Guild Awards (along with John Lithgow, who plays Winston Churchill in the show, who won Best Actor). "The Crown" also made an impressive showing at this year's major award shows, winning Best Drama and Best Actress (Foy) at the Golden Globes and Supporting Actor (Lithgow) at the Emmys.
Matt Smith, who plays Elizabeth's husband Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, will be reprising his role in Season 2, and Vanessa Kirby will be back as the rebellious Princess Margaret. Meanwhile, "Dexter" star Michael C. Hall will make an appearance in the new season as none other than John F. Kennedy.
Incidentally, this will be your last chance to watch the Queen and her husband in their youthful escapades, as Season 3 will jump ahead several decades, and Olivia Colman will be taking over Claire Foy’s role. Due to the show’s incredible reputation, strong fanbase, and being Netflix’s most expensive production, Colman has stated that she is nervous about the part but that Claire has reassured her that it will be a wonderful experience. We look forward to seeing what happens!
So if you have finished binging "Stranger Things 2" and need a new (slightly more educational) obsession, "The Crown" will be waiting for you come December 8th!