The British press rails against Harry and Meghan’s Netflix documentary

It should come as no surprise that the British press writes weakly about the Harry and Meghan docuseries. The tabloids in particular have always had a special fixation on the royal couple. Unsurprisingly, the tenor is predominantly negative.

‘Who are the biggest victims in the world right now?’ asks journalist and presenter Piers Morgan in the British newspaper The sun. “One might think it’s the poor people of Ukraine. Or those whose lives have been destroyed by the corona pandemic. Or the millions who are now struggling with poverty in a devastating crisis. But no, the world’s biggest victims are Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, a pair of incredibly wealthy and incredibly privileged narcissists. If you don’t believe me, ask him yourself. Or better yet, force yourself to watch their complaint marathon on Netflix. You’re going to need a puke bag.’

Front page of The sun it reads in all caps: ‘Bad Harry’. How low can they go? “The Spectacle Betrays the Monarchy”.

The tone has been set. The British press can’t get enough of the royal family. And the tabloids have always been extremely edgy about princely couple Harry and Meghan. Now that the first three episodes of their Netflix documentary series — in which they give their take on that royal family and which is reportedly making them $100 million — they’re unleashing all their devils.

“Prince Harry has become what he says he hates,” writes Paul Baldwin in Daily Express. “He has devoted a huge portion of his adult life to attacking journalism. He has always maintained that potboilers distort the truth. Now, with compliments from his new friends at Netflix and a check for £88m (€100m), of course, he’s become a master at playing games and twisting the truth himself.”

Terrible irony

The mirror fills his homepage with a long series of articles about the couple. The headlines read “Prince William is furious over Diana video clip in Netflix series” and “Six claims by Harry and Meghan that have now been proven completely false”. The newspapers open the tabloid with: ‘Stop this royal circus’. While ordinary Brits have to choose between food and heating, Prince Harry is again complaining about how he is being treated and Prince William is furious again.’

The daily mail headlines: “Palace rampage against Megflix” and “Harry and Meghan attack ‘racist’ Britain”. The tabloid thinks Harry and Meghan are attacking the Queen’s estate. Times writes that the British royals can rest easy. “It’s all the media’s fault.” And The independent continue on that theme. According to Sean O’Grady, there is a “terrible irony at the heart of the documentary”. “If Harry and Meghan want to lead a private life, they shouldn’t be making multi-million dollar deals with Netflix based on their fame and celebrity.”

In The Guardian plays a different sound. “All those newspapers that burn the royal couple for making a Netflix series are using the same documentary to attract readers,” writes Jim Waterson. There is also sharp criticism of the British press and the way Harry and Meghan are being handled politically. In a speech, Labor MP Chris Bryant said British newspapers were filling their columns with “hateful Meghan Markle material”. “It’s their richest clickbait pool,” he said. That’s why so many British pundits write so much bullshit about the couple. Not because the story matters. Not because they really care. Well, because it brings them money.’

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