South Park's Harry and Meghan takedown a 'spectacular' demonstration of the couple's plummeting popularity

The appalling public perception of the royal couple – and what could have been for them – was hilariously summed up by the Comedy Central sitcom, writes Angela Levin.

Harry and Meghan calling in lawyers over South Park mockery episode

The animated sitcom South Park last week served up a brutal satirical takedown of Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle in an episode about “the Prince and Princess of Canada”.

The royals are not named, but the caricature is very thinly-veiled given “the prince” has red hair and “the princess” is dressed in an off-the-shoulder pink dress and hat – the same ensemble that Meghan wore at the Trooping the Colour ceremony in 2018.

Filled with plenty of recognisable detail, the plot follows a couple who yearn for seclusion and go off on a “worldwide privacy tour” to promote the prince’s book “Waaagh”,  the cover of which clearly alludes to Harry’s recent memoir Spare.

South Park episode was 'cut-throat and brutally honest' about Harry and Meghan

The prince carries a placard on the tour that reads “we want our privacy”, while his wife’s placard says“stop looking at us.”  

They visit several countries where they are booed, including a remote part of Australia where the kangaroos bound off as soon as the couple come into view.

They also appear on Good Morning Canada, where they tell the host that they hate journalists.

The host, who describes the prince as a “royal prince, millionaire, world traveller, victim” and his wife as a “sorority girl, actress, influencer, and victim”, points out that as the prince has written a book he is a journalist too.

The couple settle down in South Park, where they hang banners requesting privacy all over their home.

A still from last week's South Park episode lampooning Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Picture: Comedy Central
A still from last week's South Park episode lampooning Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Picture: Comedy Central

They quickly get on the wrong side of neighbours by setting off fireworks, banging on drums and shouting a slogan to the same effect.

They are simply not welcome, with one of the characters saying: " "Dude, we're just kind of sick of hearing about them."

The episode, while hugely funny, also touched on the more sombre issue of the prince’s vulnerability.

He is shown to be fed up with being a “brand” and pleads with his wife: "We can be the people that we've talked about being with no more worries about how we look or the images that we project to people… what matters is what we have on the inside."

He then opens his wife's mouth, looks down and calls "hello?", his voice echoing to show that there’s nothing there.

When I spent time with Harry in 2017 and 2018 for a biography I was writing he was a charismatic character.

South Park roasts Harry and Meghan on mainstream US television

Many of us hoped when Meghan came on the scene she would be a breath of fresh air for the royal family.

But it was not enough for her to walk behind Prince William, and particularly Princess Catherine, and do it all unpaid.

If they’d hung on they could have made an impact both in the UK and Commonwealth.

But off they went to pastures new to make pots of money, be global influencers and shock us with their half-truths and perpetual moaning.

The only thing that has been spectacular is the way their popularity has plummeted.  

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