I firmly ignored 'The Crown' (2016) until this season, Season 4, because I wanted to watch both Gillian Anderson and Olivia Colman in their titular roles as Margaret Thatcher and Queen Elizabeth II respectively. This is typically not my genre of shows I watch. I most definitely didn't want to suffer through an excellent portrayal of a closeted and out-of-touch Royal Family. I wanted to throw my shoes at all of them.
However, I did scan through the previous seasons, very quickly, just so that I could argue with people who tell me 'Oh you should watch it, it's very good.' You know me. LOL A good show doesn't mean I have to watch it. I'm not discerning like that. Duhhh.
I'm not particularly interested in any rivalry between the Queen and the Prime Minister. I don't care about either of them as historical figures and they're certainly not female leaders to emulate. Neither am I bothered to fact-check the history of the country, its politics and its socioeconomic policies, etc (bloody hell I had to study it), nor the accuracy of the gossip tabloids with regards to the royal family. I just want to watch the show for these two actors because of their fine acting.
As stunning as Gillian Anderson's Margaret Thatcher is, the writer opines that her intonation is not fully in tune with the actual voice and cadences, especially markedly obvious during Iron Lady's televised speeches. He feels that the actor "hasn't quite gotten it."
In the collection of video clips below, you can hear how the real Thatcher had a lightness to her voice, a soft musical lilt, which Anderson’s version lacks. (This lightness was not natural; she adopted it at the suggestion of her image consultant.) However, I’ve noticed that those who lived through the Thatcher era are more convinced of its accuracy. Could it be that Anderson’s heavier, more ominous intonation is giving us not the way Thatcher actually spoke, but the way her voice was perceived by those who hated her?
I did feel for Margaret Thatcher in S4E2 'The Balmoral Test'. That weekend in Balmoral wouldn't be my idea of fun anyway. I would love the hiking, but not the deer stalking. Nature is awesome. However, an extended family gathering is my worst nightmare, and trying to ingratiate oneself into such a snobbish family is a terrible ordeal.
What I did, was to spend loads of time randomly reading articles and interviews about the actresses and how they felt acting opposite each other, how they felt about each other as a scene partner. Those were fun. Hahaha. The one male that didn't irritate me each time he appeared onscreen is Denis Thatcher. The scriptwriter is brilliant. Denis Thatcher had the best lines in this show, I swear. I loved him (the show persona) from the scene when he commented on what his wife thought of working together with the Queen.
“Two menopausal women,” he says. “That’ll be a smooth ride.”