By Kari Croop,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Exquisite bio-series is complex and compelling.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Major themes include duty, ambition, love, political maneuvering, and whether power itself -- or the person who holds it -- is corruptive. Also explores intersection between gender and power as it relates to social norms and romantic relationships. The queen is shown putting others first and working with a long string of leaders of various stripes to try to do what's best for her people.
Positive Role Models
Elizabeth begins her reign with relative inexperience but works to expand her knowledge and perseveres under strenuous circumstances. Other characters engage in less-than-regal behaviors.
Violence & Scariness
Graphic surgery scenes involving blood; a character suffers from terminal cancer; death. Occasional arguments lead to yelling. Later episodes feature a young Charles being bullied by his father and fellow students; Princess Diana struggles with bulimia. During animal hunts, guns are fired, and we see animals with bullet wounds.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Some episodes feature strong innuendo, implied intercourse. One episode in season two features a lengthy sex scene (without explicit nudity). Another episode features someone sexually dancing and posing for a camera. Occasional nudity includes bare breasts, buttocks. Storylines explore Princess Margaret's various romantic interests, and the extramarital affairs of other royals. Childbirth scenes with nothing private or bloody visible.
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Audible words include "Christ's sakes," "bloody hell" and other British slang, "f--k," "s--t," and "c--t."
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Products & Purchases
Occasional logos for British brands, cars (like Rolls-Royce) visible.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Characters frequently smoke cigars and cigarettes (one character notably suffers from lung cancer); social drinking. One character engages in obvious drunken behavior.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The Crown focuses on the reign of Queen Elizabeth II, exploring what it means to be a public figure and the tension among politics, power, and personal freedoms. You'll hear words like "Christ's sakes" and "bloody hell," and a few curses like "f--k" and "c--t." Some episodes show nudity (bare breasts and buttocks), some of which is in a tribal context. It features storylines involving romantic entanglements and extramarital affairs, too. Other visuals include graphic surgery scenes with some blood, and characters smoke cigars and cigarettes regularly. Social drinking is frequent, and there are some scenes featuring drunken behavior.
Where to Watch
Videos and Photos
Based on 19 parent reviews
Love the show, hate that Netflix puts soft porn in season 2 episode 7
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Brilliant, Great Acting, Entertaining
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What's the Story?
Charting the personal life and highly publicized reign of British monarch Queen Elizabeth II (Claire Foy), THE CROWN traces her rise from a young, newly married royal in 1947 to one of the most recognizable and iconic rulers in the world, carrying out her duties amid a climate of continual social change and political upheaval.
Is It Any Good?
Netflix's most expensive series to date pays off with a beautifully acted and impeccably designed drama that's also one of its very best -- and not because it's been engineered for binging. Quite the opposite, as each episode is structured to not necessarily blend into the next but to stand satisfyingly on its own, like an artfully wrapped package that's waiting to be opened when you're ready. It's a novel approach for a streaming television series that makes The Crown and its noticeable lack of cliffhangers feel revolutionary compared to some of its peers.
Those looking for an escape, whether from one's daily drudgeries or the uncertainties of modern politics, will likely find The Crown a welcome refuge. But it serves up more than dazzling visual extravagances. It also delivers thoughtful and complex messages about power, corruption, gender, and leadership that, for a period piece, have surprising relevance.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about The Crown's depiction of royal life and the demands of being a public figure. To what extent must those who reign sacrifice their personal lives for the sake of public service? What everyday "luxuries" do royals have to give up that we might take for granted?
How does The Crown handle issues of gender, power, and sexism? Is there a double standard when women rise to positions of authority?
How does The Crown compare to other streaming series in terms of budget and overall production values? How much is too much to spend on the creation of a television series, and does it pay off for studios willing to spend the cash?
- Premiere date: November 4, 2016
- Cast: Claire Foy, Matt Smith, John Lithgow
- Network: Netflix
- Genre: Drama
- Topics: Princesses, Fairies, Mermaids, and More, History
- TV rating: TV-MA
- Awards: Emmy, Golden Globe
- Last updated: April 7, 2023
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
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Where to Watch
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate