The Drama Involving The Crown's Depiction Of Carole Middleton

Despite Peter Morgan previously saying "The Crown" would wrap up before Prince William met Kate Middleton, the show ultimately did give a look into the early days of the Prince and Princess of Wales' courtship. However, in its portrayal of that, the final season offered a particularly unfavorable depiction of the princess' mother, Carole Middleton — and her brother was not amused. 

As anyone who has seen the episode depicting the start of the future King and Queen of England's love story will know, the characterization of Carole is certainly a little on the creepy side. Starting with her very first appearance in "The Crown," Carole gives decidedly uncomfortable advice to a young Kate, suggesting she pick a slinky, glittery dress for a Christmas party — and not just because of the festive flair. "It'll show off your figure, which the boys will love," she quips to her 14-year-old daughter. Unsurprisingly, the backlash was swift. Carole's brother, Gary Goldsmith was particularly vocal. In an appearance on "The Crown: Fact or Fiction" podcast, Goldsmith lambasted the insinuation that Carole would have encouraged her daughter to wear skimpier clothes. "The thought of Carole suggesting to my mum's granddaughter to show a bit of leg, it is so far away from the truth. It's just ridiculous," he scoffed.

Granted, it wasn't the first time the Middleton matriarch's character was tarnished by the media. Au contraire, it appears "The Crown" took notes from what had already been said about the multi-million dollar businesswoman, years prior. 

Carole has long been vilified as a social climber

Further than the initial scene between Kate and Carole Middleton, Season 6 of "The Crown" also hinted, repeatedly, that the latter was a social climber. Throughout the episode, she's seen listening intently to news reports about where he would be going to university and what he'd be doing for his gap year. Then, in one scene, Kate confronts her about it, pointing out that her being around Prince William was never coincidental. 

"The Crown" wasn't the first time Carole was accused of setting her eldest daughter up for a shot with the heir to the throne. After William dumped Kate back in 2007, the Daily Mail spoke with insiders who framed her as a social climber. "There's no doubt that Kate loved William but it hasn't helped that, in the background, Carole has been encouraging her forward every step of the way," they claimed. It's pretty clear "The Crown" used that sentiment as a starting point. And, in all honesty, it's not that surprising. As was pointed out by Vogue, because the Middleton family generally steers clear from speaking to the press, almost all the information out there about them comes from speculation. 

Nevertheless, Gary Goldsmith told "The Crown: Fact or Fiction" that he believed the characterization missed the mark. Though he stressed that it could have been funny to allude to the rumors, he mentioned that he felt the tone of the storyline took things too far.

Carole's brother was surprised she didn't sue

In light of just how negatively Carole Middleton was portrayed in "The Crown," it's not surprising that Gary Goldsmith joked on "The Crown: Fact or Fiction" that he thought his sister should sue the show's writers. "I don't understand why Carole hasn't taken legal action 'cause literally, it's that bad," he laughed. However, he also admitted that even though it was likely that someone was keeping the Middletons informed about the storyline, he didn't think they were watching it, anyway. "I think the family's a bit too classy to watch stuff like that," he mused.

That might not be too far off an assumption on Goldsmith's part. After all, while a number of royal family members have said they watch "The Crown" (albeit without taking it too seriously), royal commentator Omid Scobie has claimed Kate Middleton doesn't fall into that camp. Speaking to Elle, he mused "I do believe that with Kate, definitely, she truly isn't looking. I mean, when people say she doesn't look, I'm told that she doesn't even read the news. She just stays out of the loop."  

Goldsmith isn't the only royal brother-in-law to have spoken out against "The Crown." Charles Spencer, Princess Diana's brother, previously said that the show's mixture of fact and fiction misinformed viewers about his sister. It's clear Goldsmith feels the same, but we're not banking on the Middletons speaking out, any time soon.