The newest “Masterpiece” (8 p.m., PBS, channels 10 and 11) makes the most of a historical footnote, exploring the dramatic implication of wartime refugees who just happened to have been royalty. Set during World War II, “Atlantic Crossing” stars Sofia Helin and Tobias Santelmann as Crown Princess Martha and Crown Prince Olav of Norway.
They’re first seen in 1939, visiting President Franklin Roosevelt (Kyle MacLachlan) and first lady Eleanor Roosevelt (Harriet Sansom Harris) at Hyde Park at the end of a triumphal tour of the United States. The 1940 German invasion of their country sends the royal family into exile in the United States, where they form a close attachment to the Roosevelts.
MacLachlan, best known for “Twin Peaks,” and Harris, who played Frasier’s bossy agent Bebe on “Frasier,” may seem odd choices to play the Roosevelts, but they do a good job presenting them as a long-married pair who never allowed a romantic estrangement to conflict with their official roles or their abiding affection.
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