The Crown blasted by GMB's Richard Arnold for 'soap opera' fiction: 'Had to stop watching'

One of Netflix’s most popular dramas, The Crown has nevertheless come under fire from royal experts and fans for its scandalous fictionalised storylines. Ahead of the streaming series’ returning with its fifth season later this year, Good Morning Britain presenter Richard Arnold aired some of his grievances with the drama after former Prime Minister Sir John Major slammed the series himself on Sunday.

Arnold couldn’t help agreeing with Major, who has described The Crown as a “barrel load of nonsense”.

The former PM is set to feature heavily in the forthcoming season, portrayed by Trainspotting and Elementary star Jonny Lee Miller.

On Monday’s edition of GMB, Richard encouraged Netflix to include a disclaimer warning viewers the dramatisation of the royals’ history was a fictional account.

“If the people at the heart of the story are calling it a load of tosh,” he mused.

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The presenter grimaced before suggesting: “I don’t understand why Netflix doesn’t just issue, as it’s reluctantly declined to do…”

Susanna Reid chimed in: “It’s declined to issue a disclaimer, hasn’t it? Which would say it’s based on historical events but with some imagined…”

Co-presenter Richard Madeley claimed the streamer was withholding the disclaimer on purpose in order to drum up publicity for the series.

He added: “But declining to do that keeps the story in the air. I mean, you couldn’t buy this kind of publicity for a new series.”

However, Arnold grew frustrated with the more recent seasons, which focused heavily on the deteriorating relationship between Prince Charles (played by Josh O’Connor) and Princess Diana (Emma Corrin).

He went on: “The last series, I had to stop halfway through. It was verging on soap opera. It wasn’t comfortable.”

Madeley asked his co-presenter: “You mean you stopped watching it?”

“I went back to it,” Arnold revealed. “But, previously, I would have just torn through that in a weekend.”

His comments come after Major rubbished the upcoming season, which will reportedly include Prince Charles’ alleged attempt to oust Queen Elizabeth II in 1991.

A spokesperson for the former PM told the Mail on Sunday: “They should be seen as nothing other than damaging and malicious fiction.

“A barrel-load of nonsense peddled for no other reason than to provide maximum – and entirely false – dramatic impact.”

Good Morning Britain airs weekdays from 6am on ITV. The Crown season 5 will be released Wednesday, November 9 on Netflix.