The Crown: Vergangenheit
December 15, 2017 7:02 PM - Season 2, Episode 6 - Subscribe

A secret World War II document opens Elizabeth's eyes to grim realities about a family member. The Duke of Windsor campaigns to re-enter public life.
posted by Cash4Lead (22 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I am firmly with Elizabeth’s new #nonazis stance.
posted by corb at 6:09 PM on December 16, 2017 [4 favorites]

Somewhat disappointed by the lack of Nazi punching. However, a very timely episode, I thought. And very well done.
posted by nubs at 8:09 AM on December 17, 2017 [1 favorite]

This was spellbinding television. Foy was incandescently terrific. She was prepared to show kindness to the Duke of Windsor that almost no other person would, even after reading the files, even when telling him no. So when she finally "lets loose" on him (in quotes because even then she was restrained), it cuts.

My partner and I laughed out loud at the way Phillip talked about Tommy Lascelles before she went to see him. Understanding what Tommy knew makes the scene in the first season when he and the Archbishop tell the Duke he can't bring his wife to the coronation seem understated. At the time I was shocked that someone in Tommy's role could speak so viciously to a former King. But boy do you get it after this episode.

The photos at the end of the real Duke are strong reminders that *it really was that bad*.

posted by dry white toast at 8:14 AM on December 17, 2017 [29 favorites]

Yes, the photos were the icing on this episode. If anyone had been wondering if this was an overreaction, those slammed the door shut. There's a lot I find insufferable about Tommy, but his quiet, smoldering rage just underneath his reserve in this episode was magnificent.
posted by nubs at 10:54 AM on December 17, 2017 [4 favorites]

I was amused by the awful-off between Billy Graham and Prince Philip. Who's worse: an evangelical preacher or a prince who makes fun of him for selling brushes in North Carolina? Mighty hard choice for a viewer in these times.

I was called away for a bit so I'm not sure if this was covered, but I read that Hitler intended to publicly execute the princesses if he took Britain. I don't know if the Duke of Windsor was aware of that. I don't think he'd have liked it, but I suspect Wallis would have, and I don't think either of them would have broken their backs trying to stop it.
posted by Countess Elena at 12:32 PM on December 17, 2017 [6 favorites]

God, Claire Foy really was magnificent when she confronted her uncle. The anger vibrating just under the surface - the palpable icy furious feeling of sheer betrayal. This builds on the lesson of "a nation is its people" that she learned last episode, I felt.

Hello, again, Tommy. Not, I think, the last we see of him, either, is it?

We were absolutely cheated out of that unlikely and triumphant drinking circle.
posted by angeline at 12:34 PM on December 17, 2017

I tried to take a screenshot of that moment so I could caption it "tfw you find out your uncle went to a Trump rally in the year of our Lord 2017" but the app wouldn't let me
posted by Countess Elena at 12:37 PM on December 17, 2017 [5 favorites]

i can't believe i saw the queen of england flirting with billy graham
posted by poffin boffin at 2:22 AM on December 18, 2017 [2 favorites]

this is the strangest yuletide AU
posted by poffin boffin at 2:22 AM on December 18, 2017 [5 favorites]

I read that Hitler intended to publicly execute the princesses if he took Britain. I don't know if the Duke of Windsor was aware of that.

Wow. I had read about most of what was covered in this episode but I've never heard that.

As awful as the Duke's actions were. I think this episode needed a little refresher about the strong historical connections between the RF and Germany. His affinity for Germany didn't just come out of nowhere.

This was by far the most interesting episode this season for me. I live for the scenes with Tommy Lascelles.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 4:42 AM on December 22, 2017 [2 favorites]

This was an amazing episode. Unlike the others, which are largely about Elizabeth reacting to external forces (killer smog, Suez crisis, bratty sister), this one was character-driven and centered on an inward dilemma: do you forgive someone who has been truly heinous? Sadly relatable, these days.
posted by basalganglia at 10:02 AM on December 23, 2017 [1 favorite]

Wow. I mean I'd heard stuff about Windsor's Nazi appeasement before, but there was serious new information here, like that he encouraged Germany to keep bombing London because he was sure the Brits would give in and ask for peace soon. And that he apparently clued Germany in to some intelligence the Allies got which led to Germany invading France?

It makes me feel even weirder that Madonna made a movie about Edward and Wallace as if they were just some star-crossed romance. Yeesh.

Nice job building up the tension over what Elizabeth was going to do with him, though. I didn't know the exact history so I really could see it going either way, right up to the moment she sent him packing. (Only thing missing was cutting off his money, and if I was her in that place I surely would have.)
posted by dnash at 6:26 PM on December 26, 2017

The Crown Gapples With Faith , Forgiveness and Secret Nazism
The Crown Recap: Elizabeth Learns a Lesson About Nazis
The Crown: Edward’s Alleged Nazi Sympathies, Explored
As depicted on The Crown, Nazi officials are said to have concocted a 1940 plan to kidnap the Duke of Windsor and re-install him as a puppet leader after invading Britain. The strategy was formed three years after the Duke and Duchess of Windsor visited Nazi Germany as guests of Adolf Hitler at Berchtesgaden—a visit which proved to be embarrassing to Edward’s brother King George VI and, according to The New York Times, “confirm[ed] Hitler’s view that the Duke of Windsor was an advocate of the Nazi cause and could be of future use.”

The kidnapping strategy, according to The Guardian, was uncovered when the U.K. intercepted telegrams from Germany. While the plot obviously was not successful, Winston Churchill worked frantically to bury evidence of the telegrams after discovering that a copy of the documents had been sent to the U.S. State Department. Churchill pleaded with U.S. President Eisenhower to suppress the telegrams, claiming that the information they contained was “unreliable” and suggested that the duke “was in close touch with German agents and was listening to suggestions that were disloyal.”
Watching The Crown? Here Are the Real Facts You Need to Know

Official papers reveal picture of a selfish and indiscreet man who embarrassed Britain
The Windsor File
Former King wanted England bombed and an Anglo-German alliance, archives reveal

Winston Churchill concealed WW2 files showing Nazi plot to restore Edward VIII to throne
wikipedia: Operation Willi

Tom and Lorenzo - "And finally, take a look at the Duke of Windsor’s sober pin-striped suit and how much it differs from the silly and brightly colored idle-rich ensembles. It would seem that when he’s in pursuit of power, his style tendencies get sober and serious. Note how differently they both dressed in the thirties, when they both still thought they had a chance to have everything:"
posted by the man of twists and turns at 4:48 PM on January 15, 2018 [3 favorites]

Is Paul Sparks being typecast as the powerful-lady-whisperer?
posted by LizBoBiz at 7:33 AM on January 28, 2018

I did a little googling on the title and after reading definitions and translations I think the meaning is something like 'bygones'
posted by bq at 9:28 AM on March 5, 2018

I had read before that Hitler’s plan was to publicly hang the Royal Family after he successfully invaded Britain. I kept waiting for QEII to read that bit of info. I was shocked that Wallis was sleeping with Ribbentrop and passing along state secrets. What a horrible woman she was.

Interesting side note, Claire Foy played a spoiled young aristocrat in the remake/return of Upstairs, Downstairs who slept with Ribbentrop and later ran off with him to Germany. I’m guessing Ribbentrop was a real lady’s man.

I enjoyed Elizabeth’s interactions with Billy Graham. Her deep personal faith I found very touching—although to be fair if you thought God had made you queen, I could see why you would be devout. I also liked the hint of flirtation. That bright yellow dress made her look young and girlish. Phillip had every right to be a little jealous.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 8:16 PM on June 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

Now that I've had more time to think about it, I'm surprised there isn't more flirtation going on between Elizabeth and other men. She didn't always dress like a dowdy old matron, she had a nice figure and looked good in her hunting/riding gear. When you think about the first Queen Elizabeth many of the men she came into contact with flirted with her shamelessly-- mainly because she encouraged it but also because she was so powerful and lavishly rewarded her favorites. Do you think the show just doesn't want to show that side of Elizabeth or do you think it never happened? I would be very surprised if none of the men who worked closely with her ever developed a little crush.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 11:20 AM on June 26, 2018 [1 favorite]

I've been binge watching The Crown recently, and I found the portrayal of the Duke of Windsor quite troubling- in the coronation episode and him playing the bagpipes in tears- I found myself feeling quite sympathetic towards him- and reminding myself "remember, this man was a nazi sympathiser!" I'm glad this episode laid it out in literal black and white.
posted by freethefeet at 10:08 PM on January 7, 2019 [2 favorites]

Maybe he was just saying, "Hi, Hitler."
posted by kirkaracha at 9:37 PM on October 17, 2019

I second poffin boffin years later regarding the flirting with Billy Graham. Never saw her that lit up for Philip, DAMN.

I hate Tommy. This episode made me have to say "Tommy was right." Damn.

ELIZABETH'S FACE. Claire Foy is spectacular. Just Elizabeth's "I'm enraged but I am trying to be polite right now, for the next few seconds until I lose it" face.

Nthing the "Tommy, Cookie, and Philip get drunk" scene request.

" When you think about the first Queen Elizabeth many of the men she came into contact with flirted with her shamelessly-- mainly because she encouraged it but also because she was so powerful and lavishly rewarded her favorites. Do you think the show just doesn't want to show that side of Elizabeth or do you think it never happened?"

Elizabeth the First was single and frequently trying to lead people on with hopes of marriage. Elizabeth the Second has been married for years at this point. It seems highly inappropriate that she would flirt with anyone, plus she only ever loved Philip supposedly. I don't think she has it in her, which is what surprised me so much here.
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:08 PM on April 3, 2021

Billy Graham was a shitheel, but I can definitely see why Elizabeth would enjoy meeting with him. He listened respectfully to her deepest feelings about religion and offered her insights she found helpful. She could never have had that kind of conversation with Philip.

Before seeing this episode, I knew something about the Duke of Windsor's Nazi sympathies: that he visited Germany and never saw beyond the polished surface of what Hitler's henchmen showed him; that Hitler hoped to use him to form a puppet government in Britain. I did not know that he had actively colluded with the Nazis. I found his betrayal of England and France to be horrifying.
posted by orange swan at 2:59 AM on April 29, 2023

Yeah, I read Traitor King and apparently he toured a concentration camp. So....yeah.
posted by jenfullmoon at 3:19 PM on April 29, 2023

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