The first part of the sixth and final season of “The Crown” failed many critics. On the critics portal "Rotten Tomatoes", the four opening episodes, which deal with the last months of Princess Diana (1961-1997), only received a score of 55 percent - these are the worst ratings for "The Crown" since it started Netflix series in 2016. Some scenes particularly caught the attention of critics.
Even though many film critics praise the performance of Diana actress Elizabeth Debicki (33), they criticize the lack of chemistry with Khalid Abdalla (42), who plays her partner Dodi Al-Fayed (1955-1997). "Debicki is great at looking melancholy on a yacht, but these scenes don't quite challenge her range," says a critic from Vulture. "She and Abdalla woo each other with mutual kindness, but never with much spark."
There are some discrepancies between Prince Harry's (39) memoir "Reserve" and the Netflix series, as "GB News" notes. For example, in the scene in which Charles actor Dominic West (54) hugs his sons William (42) and Harry after the funeral service for Diana. However, the Duke of Sussex described in his autobiography in January 2023 that his father reacted very reservedly after his mother's death. "Pa didn't hug me. He wasn't particularly good at showing emotions under normal circumstances. How could he be expected to show them in a crisis like this?"
While "The Crown" moves between reality and fiction right from the start, screenwriter Peter Morgan (60) has come up with a special trick for the final season: Diana returns as a ghost and appears posthumously in front of Charles (75) and the others Queen (1926-2022) to explain to them how they should deal with her death. A daring decision that was met with widespread criticism from critics. This is the “most shocking decision,” according to “Screenrant”. And "Entertainment Weekly" rates Ghost Diana as a "strange flight of maudlin fantasy."
In an interview with Variety, Peter Morgan explained his idea behind the scenes: "I never thought of it as Diana's 'ghost' in the traditional sense - it was that she continued to live vividly in the minds of those she left behind. " He added: "Diana was unique, and I think that inspired me to find a unique way to portray her. She deserved special treatment narratively."
The first four episodes of the final season also failed to convince many critics in terms of their overall impression. "It's never been more clear that 'The Crown' has strayed further and further away from what made it special in its first few seasons," said a critic from "Collider." "The overall impression is that the series is trying too hard to pack in as much relevant history as possible." Another critic wrote in The Guardian: "Apart from all its formal flaws, late-stage 'Crown' is also incredibly hamstrung because it is so well set in living memory." A major problem, she said, is that viewers are still unable to see the real scenes had good things in mind. The "Decider" comes to the conclusion: "While I can see and enjoy Debicki's performance, I also think it's good that the show ends now, the time has come."
The sixth and final season of “The Crown” comes in two parts: Netflix released the first four episodes on November 16th, and the final episodes five to ten will be released on December 14th.