The Crown (2016– )
4 user 12 critic

Smoke and Mirrors 

Elizabeth rejects protocol by appointing Phillip to coordinate her coronation, but his ideas create conflict. The Duke of Windsor returns to London.



(created by), | 4 more credits »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother
King George VI
Queen Mary
Clemmie Churchill
Winston Churchill
Anthony Eden
Prince Charles
Verity Russell ...
Young Princess Elizabeth
Lord Salisbury
Jock Colville


In 1953, Elizabeth recalls her father's words to her, prior to his own coronation, as she prepares for her own. Edward turns up for the occasion, but declines to attend when his wife is refused admission. After Mary dies and her funeral is in the traditional old style, Philip, feeling side-lined by his wife, decides to organize a down-sized coronation, more acceptable to a country still hit by rationing, and broadcast it live on television. The Establishment is shocked, but the occasion is a success. Written by don @ minifie-1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | History


See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

4 November 2016 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The bagpipe tune played at the end by the ex-king is Flowers of the Forest, a song always played in mourning. See more »


Queen Elizabeth II: Do you suppose I might borrow it? For a couple of days, just to practice.
Valet: Borrow it Ma'am? From whom? If it's not yours, whose is it?
See more »


Zadok the Priest
Composed by George Frideric Handel
[Coronation anthem]
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A gorgeous recreation of history and some great development for Philip.
6 November 2016 | by See all my reviews

This episode contains the long-awaited coronation scene, and it is clear that a huge portion of the budget was spent on this. The result is gorgeous. I want to watch it side by side with footage of the real thing, to see just how accurate it is. The coronation isn't the only scene this episode that takes place in Westminster Abbey, either. The location is taken full advantage of in this episode.

Most of the episode focuses on the preparation for and planning of the coronation. Elizabeth places Philip in charge of planning the coronation. He generates a lot of conflict when he proposes a number of unconventional ideas, prompting a number of scenes which examine the purpose of a monarchy in a very interesting way.

Philip also receives quite a bit of character development in this episode, as his motivations are made clear and his increasing sense of emasculation is shown. Matt Smith is quite good in the role. I was skeptical when I heard he had been cast; I enjoyed him in Doctor Who, but he did not do a whole lot to make me confident in his acting abilities. But in this episode, he does very well.

Overall, this is a marvellous episode of the crown. It contains many great scenes, but will be remembered mostly for its pitch perfect recreation of the coronation.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 4 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page