Tory MP blasts The Crown's portrayal of Margaret Thatcher

Tory MP blasts The Crown’s twisted portrayal of Margaret Thatcher and the Falklands War as ‘utter rubbish’ as Netflix show is slammed for being ‘pro-IRA’

  • The Crown accused of re-writing history over the IRA and Falklands War
  • Viewers angry about ‘pro-IRA’ voiceover during funeral of Lord Mountbatten
  • Show also suggests Mrs Thatcher pushed for war after Mark Thatcher vanished 
  • Andrew Bridgen said: ‘Rubbish. If there was ever a just war it was the Falklands’

The Crown has painted a twisted and inaccurate picture of Margaret Thatcher and her premiership including her long battle with the IRA, a Conservative MP said today.

Tory backbencher Andrew Bridgen is also upset by the hit show’s claims that the Iron Lady’s decision to go to war with Argentina over the Falkland Islands was clouded by the disappearance of her son Mark months earlier in 1982. 

He said: ‘Utter rubbish. If there was ever a just war it was the Falklands War’.

Gillian Anderson stars as Mrs Thatcher in season 4 of the hit show, which launched on Netflix yesterday. But some viewers have complained about the tone of Episode 1 including an ‘IRA propaganda voice over’ during the funeral of Lord Mountbatten after he was assassinated by Irish republican terrorists with a 50lb bomb on his boat Shadow V in 1979.    

Mr Bridgen told MailOnline: ‘They are painting a picture of Mrs Thatcher and that period for a generation who don’t remember what it was like to live through the horrors perpetrated by these terrorists. People lived in fear, especially in cities like Birmingham, where people were frightened to go out after so many people were murdered by the brutal IRA in the pub bombings’. 

One upset viewer tweeted today: ‘Watching #TheCrown, am not loving the pro-IRA sentiments if I’m being honest’.    

The IRA murdered more than 1,700 people during a 25-year campaign, including five people in the 1984 Brighton hotel bombing launched to assassinate Mrs Thatcher. But this incident appears to have been skipped by the show’s writers in the ten-episode series. 


Margaret Thatcher, played by Gillian Anderson in the The Crown left, but viewers are unhappy about the unsympathetic portrayal of the Iron Lady and her handling of various crises including fighting the IRA 

Some viewers of the new series of The Crown claimed some elements felt ‘pro-IRA’

Others were critical of claims in the show that Mrs Thatcher’s decision to go to war with Argentina was clouded by her son Mark’s disappearance

Others branded the show an ‘attack on Thatcher’ and an attempt to ‘rewrite history’, including the suggestion the first female Tory leader took Britain to war with Argentina after they invaded the Falklands due to her emotional state over her son being missing.

One viewer tweeted: ‘The Crown really went “thatcher’s son is lost so she waged war in the falklands” ?????

Andrew Bridgen says The Crown is painting an untrue picture about Mrs Thatcher and the IRA for millions who didn’t live through

Another wrote: ‘Really don’t like that The Crown is suggesting Thatcher was emotional about her son when she took charge of the the attack on the Falklands’.

Other inaccuracies in the drama have also been slammed, including that Mrs Thatcher told the Queen she thought that women were incapable of holding high office. 

The show has also attracted criticism for its portrayal of the royals, especially Prince Charles.

Prince William will ‘undoubtedly detest’ The Crown after it portrayed his father Prince Charles as ‘brutal’ and a ‘insecure wimp’ and his late mother Princess Diana as ‘deeply stressed’, a royal expert said today.

Richard Fitzwilliams said the Duke of Cambridge will view the Netflix drama as ‘deeply intrusive’ with a ‘malign and ill-mannered’ portrayal of senior royals. 

Other royal experts have lined up to criticise the drama, including Ingrid Seward who called it ‘pretty inaccurate’, Dickie Arbiter who said ‘some of the actions are fiction’ and Sally Beddell Smith who warned ‘the level of invention has been growing’.

Tom Quinn said parts of the show were ‘total nonsense’, although Paul Burrell was full of praise, saying it was a ‘fair and accurate dramatisation of what happened’.

Inaccuracies in the drama have also been slammed, including that Charles saw Lord Mountbatten as more of a father-figure than Prince Philip, and that Margaret Thatcher told the Queen she thought women were incapable of holding high office.

Charles Dance plays Lord Louis Mountbatten in the show. He was murdered by the IRA in 1979

Royal commentator Mr Fitzwilliams also told MailOnline that Prince Harry is ‘unlikely to see a clash between it and the Netflix deal which he and Meghan have made’.  

It comes amid fresh questions about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s decision to sign a multi-million-pound deal with the California-based broadcaster. 

Friends of Prince Charles have also launched a blistering attack on The Crown last night, accusing producers of the hit Netflix drama of ‘trolling on a Hollywood budget’.

Some of the Prince’s closest confidantes have accused the streaming giant of exploiting the Royal Family’s pain for financial gain and raged that ‘fiction is presented as fact’ in its twisted version of events.

The Crown’s fourth series focuses on Thatcher’s rise to power and her dramatic social reforms in the 1980s, which divided the country as it led to weakening of the power of the trade unions and the 1984 miners strike. 

Some have praised Gillian Anderson for her eerily perfect performance as Thatcher, complete with her famous drawl, and even tipped her for a win at the Emmy Awards in 2021. 

This would not be the first time an actor received critical acclaim for their performance as a Prime Minister in The Crown, as John Lithgow was awarded with an Emmy and a Golden Globe nomination for his performance as Winston Churchill. 

It comes after Gillian Anderson reflected on portraying ‘divisive’ former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in series four of The Crown.

In a new interview, the actress revealed she received help from two vocal coaches and rehearsed in ‘dark and abandoned rooms’ to channel the late politician, who led the country from 1979 until 1990.

The X-Files star admitted getting into costume also helped her play the stateswoman as she said: ‘Never in my life would I wear the shoes she wore. But walking in the way I learned to walk as her, and in those shoes, just helped so much.’

Prince Harry won’t U-turn on his Netflix deal because he ‘might AGREE’ with The Crown’s portrayal of ‘cruel’ royals while William will ‘detest’ depiction of ‘wimp’ Charles and ‘stressed’ Diana, say royal experts

Prince Harry won’t U-turn on his £75million Netflix deal despite the fierce criticism of The Crown’s portrayal of his parents, royal commentators claimed today.

The Duke of Sussex is ‘unlikely to see a clash’ between series four of the royal drama and the deal he and wife Meghan made with the California-based broadcaster.

Royal expert Richard Fitzwilliams said Harry may even agree with the ‘derisory portrayal of the Royal Family as a rather sinister, uncaring and often cruel institution’.

But his brother William will ‘undoubtedly detest’ The Crown after it portrayed their father Charles as ‘brutal’ and late mother Diana as ‘deeply stressed’.

Other royal experts have lined up to criticise the drama, including Ingrid Seward who called it ‘pretty inaccurate’, Dickie Arbiter who said ‘some of the actions are fiction’ and Sally Beddell Smith who warned ‘the level of invention has been growing’.

Tom Quinn said parts of the show were ‘total nonsense’, although Paul Burrell was full of praise, saying it was a ‘fair and accurate dramatisation of what happened’.

Inaccuracies in the drama have also been slammed, including that Charles saw Lord Mountbatten as more of a father-figure than Prince Philip, and that Margaret Thatcher told the Queen she thought women were incapable of holding high office.

Meanwhile Conservative MP Andrew Bridgen warned The Crown has painted a twisted picture of late prime minister Baroness Thatcher and her premiership including her battle with the IRA and the decision to go to war with Argentina.

Princess Diana is played by Emma Corrin and Prince Charles by Josh O’Connor in The Crown

Charles and Diana with sons Harry (left) and William (right) in the Scilly Isles in June 1989

The fourth series of the hit drama features topics such as Charles’s doomed marriage to Diana, his affair with Camilla Parker Bowles and Diana’s eating disorders.

Mr Fitzwilliams said the show portrays Charles as a ‘selfish, insecure wimp’, adding: ‘He is self pitying and brutal to Diana after, for example, her success in New York.

Royal expert Richard Fitzwilliams (above) said William will ‘undoubtedly detest’ The Crown

‘His physicality is curious, it heightens the aura of inadequacy which this portrayal emphasizes. He is in love in Camilla but viewers will not sympathise with this portrayal. 

‘It is made clear that he is a product of an extremely dysfunctional family.’

The expert added that Diana ‘comes across as someone who is deeply stressed, we see bouts of bulimia, because she is a victim’.

He said: ‘Gradually we see her spread her magic. She needs affection and to be appreciated. Emma Corrin is well cast in the role which is sympathetic.’

The Crown will cover events up to the early 2000s including the disasters of the 1990s in two more seasons.

And the royal expert said: ‘William will undoubtedly detest it. I think, if he watches it, he will see it as deeply intrusive and will think its portrayal of senior royals as so malign and ill-mannered as callous and the way it takes so many liberties with fact as deeply deplorable.

Prince William with his parents Diana and Charles at Kensington Palace in London in June 1984

‘Harry is unlikely to see a clash between it and the Netflix deal which he and Meghan have made. He would probably argue that despite enormous dramatic licence the series has a vast audience, many of whom are fascinated by it and untroubled by how it ignores facts. Meghan won’t appear.

‘They, as we know, were unhappy as senior royals and may agree with this derisory portrayal of the royal family as a rather sinister, uncaring and often cruel institution.’

Royals, lies and videotape: The Crown is ground-breaking, addictive TV that’s launched a host of new stars. But royal historian IAN LLOYD says viewers must remember the drama plays fast and loose with the truth

By Ian Lloyd for the Mail on Sunday 

Like the previous three series of The Crown, the latest is riddled with factual errors. Here, Royal historian Ian Lloyd highlights some of the worst examples.

DIANA AND CAMILLA’S LUNCH ‘DISASTER’

TV VERSION The two women in Charles’s life are shown meeting for lunch at the London restaurant Menage a Trois shortly after the Prince and Diana became engaged. 

Camilla is seen winding up her increasingly distressed love rival by saying she knows Diana’s future husband so very much better.

FICTION: The Crown shows a tense meeting between Diana and Camilla. In reality, relations were cordial

THE TRUTH As Penny Junor says on the opposite page, Diana and Camilla did meet at the Menage a Trois, in 1981, but only after Diana was married. 

Previously, they had dined together in La Fontana, an Italian restaurant in Pimlico. 

Antony Worrall Thompson, the former chef-patron of Menage a Trois, witnessed their later encounter and has told The Mail on Sunday: ‘The ladies were there for a couple of hours, engrossed in conversation. They were very amiable; there were no raised voices.’

Camilla Parker-Bowles (right) and Lady Diana Spencer (later the Princess of Wales) pictured in conversation at Ludlow racecourse in 1980

‘GLADYS AND FRED’ BRACELET

TV VERSION According to Netflix, after their engagement, Diana discovers Charles is designing a bracelet inscribed with the initials ‘G’ and ‘F’. 

She assumes they stand for Gladys and Fred – Charles and Camilla’s pet names for each other. 

Convinced they’re having an affair, she tells the Queen the wedding cannot go ahead and confronts Charles at the rehearsal at St Paul’s Cathedral.

INSCRIBED: The real Camilla wears the G and F bracelet Charles designed

THE TRUTH While Diana did find the bracelet and was ‘devastated’, the initials stood for ‘Girl Friday’ – Charles’s nickname for Camilla. 

But there’s no evidence Diana approached the Queen, and there was no confrontation at St Paul’s – it had been discussed earlier. 

Charles did give the bracelet to Camilla on the day of the rehearsal, which led to Diana having what she described as a ‘wobble’.

THE TRUTH: Charles did give the G and F bracelet to Camilla on the day of the rehearsal, which led to Diana having what she described as a ‘wobble’. Pictured: Emerald Fennell as Camilla and Josh O’Connor as Prince Charles in series four of The Crown

DIANA DRESSED AS A WOOD NYMPH

TV VERSION While at Althorp House for a date with Sarah Spencer, Charles is seen entranced by her younger teenage sister Diana, who is in costume as a woodland nymph for a school production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

THE TRUTH Charles did first meet Diana at Althorp – when he’d been invited for a grouse-shoot – but there’s no evidence she was dressed as a wood nymph.

THE FIERCE GRANNY

TV VERSION A young Diana is seen arriving for a weekend at Balmoral with her grandmother Ruth, Lady Fermoy, the Queen Mother’s close friend and lady-in-waiting.

Lady Fermoy tells Diana the visit is ‘the most important weekend of your life’. After the engagement, Lady Fermoy schools Diana in the ‘sink or swim rules’ of Royal life, saying ‘if you get one wrong, you’re not only in trouble, you’re dead’.

THE TRUTH Lady Fermoy never gave Diana tutorials on Royal life. Diana was shown the ropes by lady-in-waiting Lady Susan Hussey and Edward Adeane, Charles’s Private Secretary. Royal writer Andrew Morton has said Lady Fermoy tried to counsel Diana against the marriage, warning: ‘Darling, you must understand their sense of humour and their lifestyle are different, and I don’t think it will suit you.’

DIANA’S MILE-HIGH FIGHT WITH COURTIERS

TV VERSION The Princess is said to have agreed to go on a six-week tour of Australia in 1983 on condition that baby William goes too. 

BUSH BABY: How The Crown shows Diana, Charles and William on their Australia tour 

During the flight out, she is seen in a furious row with Charles’s Private Secretary, Edward Adeane, after learning she’ll be separated from William for two weeks. 

In the show, Diana insists her son should grow up with ‘humanity’, which he won’t learn from courtiers.

THE TRUTH Diana said there was never a problem taking William, and that she and Charles ‘never had a fight about it’. In fact, she was prepared to leave her young son in the UK, until Australia’s prime minister, Malcolm Fraser, suggested she bring him.

Prince and Princess of Wales amuse baby Prince William on a rug in the grounds of Government House in Auckland, New Zealand in 1983

THE CLUMSY REFERENCE TO A CONSPIRACY THEORY

TV VERSION At Christmas 1990, amid problems in her marriage, Diana is seen warning her father-in-law that she may leave Charles. Prince Philip advises her not to, warning such action ‘might not work out well’ for her. Diana replies: ‘Is that a threat, Sir?’

THE TRUTH Philip did write letters to Diana but joked ‘I have no talents as a marriage counsellor!!!’ and later, when relations with Charles got worse, claimed it was ‘impossible’ to speak to her. Philip’s ‘warning’ is a clumsy reference to baseless conspiracy theories that he was involved in the crash which killed Diana.

QUEEN’S ‘CRIB SHEET’ ABOUT HER CHILDREN

TV VERSION Her Majesty is shown in 1982 asking her private secretary, Martin Charteris, to set up individual meetings with her four children, and requesting a ‘briefing document on each child’s hobbies and interests’ as ‘one would hate to feel cold or remote’.

THE TRUTH Martin Charteris retired in 1977, five years before this conversation supposedly took place. Her Majesty sees her children as and when, and certainly wouldn’t ask to see them individually with appointments. She also wouldn’t want crib notes. 

However, it was reported she once forgot Edward’s birthday in the early 1990s and had to be reminded by household staff.

TOO BOASTFUL… EVEN FOR ANDREW

TV VERSION Prince Andrew is portrayed telling the Queen he has asked his brother Edward, rather than Charles, to be best man at his wedding. Thus Charles would know how it felt to be sidelined. Andrew also says Charles is ‘jealous’ of his military record and popularity, and insists that he would have made a better heir to the throne.

THE TRUTH It was only natural Andrew chose Edward as they are closer in age. Even with Andrew’s inflated sense of self-worth, the idea that he told the Queen he would have made a better heir is risible.

A RIFT BETWEEN CHARLES AND LORD MOUNTBATTEN

TV VERSION Despite being the Prince’s great-uncle and long-time confidant, Earl Mountbatten is seen having a frosty phone exchange with Charles about Camilla.

Mountbatten tells his great-nephew that the rest of the family is disappointed at him pursuing the relationship. He’s then shown writing Charles a letter, urging him to remember his duty.

The Crown portrays a ‘rift’ between Charles and long-time confidant Lord Mountbatten (played by Charles Dance in series four of The Crown), the truth is there is no evidence of a heated conversation or letter

THE TRUTH There’s no evidence of a heated phone conversation or letter. Mountbatten had advised Charles to choose a ‘suitable, attractive, sweet-charactered girl’. 

A year after Mountbatten was killed by an IRA bomb, Charles began dating Diana – fulfilling his great-uncle’s wish.

THE DUKE AND HIS BALLERINAS

TV VERSION Prince Philip teases the Queen about never dancing for him. The Crown has her reply archly: ‘No – because you had your ballerinas,’ a reference to an alleged dalliance in the series.

THE TRUTH Women said to have befriended the Duke include a nightclub singer, a writer, two actresses, a TV personality, a Hollywood star, half a dozen aristocrats and the Queen’s cousin – but no ballerinas.

Compiled by Amy Oliver and Chris Hastings 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 and the horrendous Thatcher attack/impression

 

 with one viewer tweeting today: ‘Watching #TheCrown, am not loving the pro-IRA sentiments if I’m being honest’, while another wrote The IRA propaganda voice over

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Crown viewers have been left ‘confused’ over Gillian Anderson’s portrayal of Margaret Thatcher.

The actress, 52, plays the Prime Minister throughout her time in office in the 1980s, with focus on her turbulent relationship with the Royal Family.

And since the fourth series was released on Sunday, fans have taken to social media to express their ‘very conflicted’ views on Gillian’s performance. 

‘I have such a girl crush on Gillian Anderson but she’s playing Thatcher and I really don’t want to fancy Thatcher! Looking forward to a very conflicted Sunday afternoon,’ wrote one, while a second joked: ‘it’s so upsetting to me that i still fancy Gillian Anderson even when she’s playing Margaret Thatcher.’ 

The Crown viewers has been left ‘confused’ over Gillian Anderson’s portrayal of Margaret Thatcher (pictured) 

The Crown viewers joked Gillian Anderson is their ‘girl crush’ but they didn’t want to fancy the Prime Minister. Pictured, Margaret Thatcher in Scarborough, England on March 18, 1989.

Taking to Twitter, one person penned: ‘Gillian Anderson is still up there as my girl crush despite being cast as Margaret Thatcher’ (pictured)

The Crown’s fourth series focuses on Thatcher’s rise to power and her dramatic social reforms in the 1980s, which divided the country as it led to weakening of the power of the trade unions and the 1984 miners strike. 

‘Having a hard time separating my hatred of Margret Thatcher, to my hard crush of Gillian Anderson. So confused,’ wrote one, while a second agreed: 

‘Gillian Anderson as Thatcher has made me the most sexually confused I have ever been in my life.’

A further added: ‘If anyone needs me today I’ll be having several conflicting emotions about Gillian Anderson in The Crown,’ while a fourth penned: ‘Gillian Anderson is still up there as my girl crush despite being cast as Margaret Thatcher.’ 

Many praised Gillian Anderson for her eerily perfect performance as Thatcher, complete with her famous drawl, and even tipped her for a win at the Emmy Awards in 2021. Pictured, at the Bafta Film Awards in central London on February 2020

Taking to Twitter, one person joked: ‘If anyone needs me today I’ll be having several conflicting emotions about Gillian Anderson in The Crown’ (pictured) 

Meanwhile, others simply praised Gillian Anderson for her eerily perfect performance as Thatcher, complete with her famous drawl, and even tipped her for a win at the Emmy Awards in 2021. 

This would not be the first time an actor received critical acclaim for their performance as a Prime Minister in The Crown, as John Lithgow was awarded with an Emmy and a Golden Globe nomination for his performance as Winston Churchill. 

It comes after Gillian Anderson reflected on portraying ‘divisive’ former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in series four of The Crown.

In a new interview, the actress revealed she received help from two vocal coaches and rehearsed in ‘dark and abandoned rooms’ to channel the late politician, who led the country from 1979 until 1990.

The X-Files star admitted getting into costume also helped her play the stateswoman as she said: ‘Never in my life would I wear the shoes she wore. But walking in the way I learned to walk as her, and in those shoes, just helped so much.’

Thespian Gillian, who also sported a fat suit and ‘really uncomfortable nylon stockings’ on set, insisted she ‘let go’ of her ‘preconceived ideas of Margaret’ and had picked up on the politician’s mannerisms by watching old videos of her.

On feeling distant from her distinctive voice, she told The Sun: ‘It’s quite easy to parody her voice, which makes it hard to identify with. It was about trying to find the balance, but at the same time understanding who she was and how she operated.’   

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