The so-called "terrific method" from has a dark connection to the real-life history presented in the show. Debuting on Netflix in 2023, the series explores the origins of Queen Charlotte's (India Amarteifio) reign and how she became the cool and confident monarch that she is in the seasons of . Like the show that it spun off from, walks a fine line between telling the true story of English history and embellishing things a bit for dramatic effect. However, her marriage to King George III was presented in a mostly factual way which is all the more fascinating.
was met with almost universal praise from critics who specifically cited the show's anachronistic approach and brilliant casting (via ). Besides being an epic historical love story, also makes all the more compelling by framing it through the young life of the queen herself. Even as the show played around with historical theories regarding Charlotte's race, the series tackled King George's (Corey Mylchreest) illness from an entirely fact-based approach which is why it made for such a compelling plot line throughout the show's lone season.
As depicted in , Dr. Monro's (Guy Henry) "terrific method" was actually anything but that, and was the crooked M.D.'s approach to treating George's mental illness. Coming early in his life, George began hearing voices in his head and turned to Monro to help cure his affliction so that he wouldn't appear sick for his new bride, Charlotte. Thinking he had just the cure for George's illness, Monro employed the "terrific method" which involved lowering George's social stature since the doctor theorized he had grown too used to people blindly following his orders.
To treat George, Monro forced the King to act subservient to him and live a life like a peasant including eating cheaper food and having worse living conditions. On top of that, Monro also subjected George to repeated dunks in frigid water which was supposed to stimulate him in some way. Naturally, the treatments had no effect on George's mental illness, and the King pursued other avenues before desperately returning to Monro as his symptoms began to return.
Shining a light on , offered backstory on the monarch and handled his very real condition with a surprising amount of tact. Though the entire franchise plays somewhat fast and loose with history, King George's affliction is a well-known part of the historical record, though the exact details are impossible to know for sure. According to , the long-held belief was that George suffered from porphyria, a blood disorder that affected the brain. However, some modern reassessments have posited that "".
Because George lived so long ago, an actual diagnosis is impossible and the information available about him from the time is skewed by the era's backward views on mental illness. doesn't make any guesses about his illness, but instead tackles the emotional toll that it had on George as a person. Queen Charlotte's response to his illness is also somewhat speculative on the part of the show's writers, as is the steamier aspects of their love story which was likely embellished for entertainment value.