Joy Behar Calls Out Judi Dench’s ‘The Crown’ Criticism: It’s Obviously Fictional ‘If You Have a Brain’

"They tell you at the top that it is not a documentary, and if you have a brain, you can figure out that the writers have used history," the "View" co-host said.
The Crown
"The Crown"
Courtesy of Netflix

Joy Behar has a different point of view on “The Crown” than Dame Judi Dench.

“The View” co-host clapped back at Dench’s criticisms over the “cruelly unjust” portrayal of the British royal family in the fictionalized Netflix series.

“This dame disagrees with Dame Judi Dench, because they tell you at the top that it is not a documentary, and if you have a brain, you can figure out that the writers have used history,” Behar said during “The View,” via Entertainment Weekly. “And if it’s documented history, then we can believe it, but we’re not going to believe a conversation that’s going on in the bedroom of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. Nobody was there but the two of them, so you don’t believe that part. But the historical part, you believe.”

Oscar winner Dench shared a letter with the U.K.’s The Times (via Deadline) slamming “The Crown” for being an “inaccurate and hurtful account of history,” echoing the concerns of former Prime Minister John Major about an episode in Season 5 suggesting that, in 1991, Prince Charles (now King Charles III) complained to Major about waiting to take over the throne from Queen Elizabeth II.

“Given some of the wounding suggestions apparently contained in the new series — that King Charles plotted for his mother to abdicate, for example, or once suggested his mother’s parenting was so deficient that she might have deserved a jail sentence — this is both cruelly unjust to the individuals and damaging to the institution they represent,” Dench wrote. “No one is a greater believer in artistic freedom than I, but this cannot go unchallenged.”

Dench continued, “Despite this week stating publicly that ‘The Crown’ has always been a ‘fictionalized drama,’ the program makers have resisted all calls for them to carry a disclaimer at the start of each episode. The time has come for Netflix to reconsider — for the sake of a family and a nation so recently bereaved, as a mark of respect to a sovereign who served her people so dutifully for 70 years, and to preserve its reputation in the eyes of its British subscribers.”

The final two seasons of “The Crown” span the 1990s to 2003, with Season 6 including Princess Diana’s death, which Netflix has stated will not be shown onscreen.

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