The Crown Season 5 Will Ask The Question, 'Do We Need The Monarchy?'

"The Crown" season 5 is inching closer to its release and is packed with unprecedented drama that will dominate Internet discourse for the next few weeks. A new season brings an exciting new cast (changed every two years to depict naturally aging royals), and new characters take center stage, all to unravel a six-year period between 1991 and 1997 when the public was overwhelmingly critical of the monarchy and their doings.

Not to mention the scandal and controversy that broke out during this time, which changed the monarchy forever. The separation of Prince Charles (Dominic West) and Princess Diana (Elizabeth Debicki), her explosive Panorama interview with Martin Bashir, her subsequent relationship with Dodi Fayed, and the tragic Windsor Castle fire, among other circumstances, led the Queen's subjects to wonder whether their country needed a monarchy in the first place. For Queen Elizabeth II, the people's criticism of her family was a near-impossible situation to navigate, and "The Crown" season 5 will explore that.

'Do we need the queen?'

In a new featurette glimpsing the upcoming fifth season, "The Crown," showrunner Peter Morgan explained how the season represents a period of uncertainty and people's lack of confidence in the British Monarchy. Scandals were overruling marriages, and private interviews given by certain royal family members opened up a new side of the royal family: one that proved everything wasn't as sparkly as it seemed.

"Season 5 plays against a period of real criticism and uncertainty and unconfidence. It's quite shocking how overtly critical people were of the monarchy at that time," said Morgan.

Award-winning acclaimed actress Imelda Staunton, who portrays Queen Elizabeth II in the remainder of the show, spoke of her character. At the time, people were beginning to lose faith in the existence of the monarchy, and the monarch was compelled to wait out the storm, with patience.

"It does start with people questioning, 'Do we need the monarchy? Do we need the queen?' And she has to ride that particular storm."

Golden Globe nominee Dominic West, who makes his debut as Prince Charles this season, joined his colleagues and praised Peter Morgan for his screenplay's ability to accurately depict the public's view and perspective on the monarchy, their marriages, and their very public lives, and how that outlook in the 1950s clashed with its modern-day principles. His character, Prince Charles, is publicly revealed to have been cheating on his wife, Diana, who is easily the most beloved figure in the entire British royal family. The clash between their principles and perspectives is one of the issues that will take the spotlight this season.

An annus horribilis

Here's West's full quote from the clip:

"The great tensions that you see in this season that Peter's written about is between this 1950s outlook on the monarchy and on public life and on marriage, and the modern day, and how they clash, and how Diana really represents the modern day, and Charles is sort of caught between the two."

"The Crown" season 5, which you can read now /Film's review for right here, is teeming with outstanding drama for viewers who enjoy watching an unseen side of the royal family come to life. It's also a season where Princess Diana is at a breaking point, along with her husband, Prince Philip, and after keeping the peace for as long as it was possible, the couple refuses to settle for less ever again. The consequences of their actions altered the monarchy forever, eventually leading the Queen to approve the one divorce she had been so committed to preventing. Queen Elizabeth referred to 1992 as an "annus horribilis," and the season will follow the same trajectory, bringing to life the many, quiet royal pains that wreaked mayhem in the House of Windsor.