Body Language Expert Points Out ‘Utter Misery’ and ‘Distress’ in Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Netflix Trailer

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Netflix docuseries trailer is full of body language clues that show their “utter misery and distress,” according to one expert. The Harry & Meghan trailer has received plenty of attention as the two seek to tell their own story in the upcoming series.

Meghan Markle wears a white top and Prince Harry wears a blue button down shirt while they look on
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry | Chris Jackson – Pool/Getty Images

Expert breaks down the ‘Harry & Meghan’ Netflix trailer

Body language expert Judi James shared her analysis of the Harry & Meghan trailer with Express, pointing out some interesting highlights of the Sussexes’ gestures and expressions.

“Anyone at Buckingham Palace hoping this Netflix doc might be a fluffy account of how a privileged prince found and married the beautiful woman of his dreams and rode off with her into the Californian sunset will be under no such illusions after watching this dramatic trailer,” James said.

The body language expert broke down each moment of the trailer. “The first question: ‘Why did you make it?’ receives a pause from Harry that is so pregnant it’s in its third trimester,” James said.

The expert noted that, when Harry answers, he turns to a “cliché” that really doesn’t ring true. “No one sees what’s happened behind closed doors,” Harry explains. James pointed out how this “is true of any family, whether they’re living it large in palaces and Californian estates or struggling out of Covid to deal with strikes and the misery of a cost of living crisis that has sent many off to food banks, but this trailer implies that unhappiness is no respecter of wealth or fortune.”

Meghan Markle shows ‘utter misery’ and ‘distress,’ expert says

James also explained how the trailer conveys Meghan is in “distress” and “utter misery” by using “powerful images.”

She explained, “The two most powerful images of the many that are shown as tasters of what is to come seem to reveal Meghan in an apparent state of distress. In the first, she is curled up on a bed clutching a phone in one hand and her face in the other in a pose of what looks in this brief view like utter misery.”

James continued, “We have been told of her suffering and her vulnerability in the past and this pose makes for difficult viewing, even to the point of prompting concern over who actually filmed or photographed her in this moment of what looks like distress?”

She added, “It looks horribly intrusive based on the couples’ desire for privacy and she looks so sadly isolated here but hopefully we will be reassured in the series that her hidden facial expression is less worrying than it looks.”

James also looked at Harry’s reaction in a clip that shows Meghan upset. “The second photo also shows Meghan appearing to cry, wiping her eyes with her hands,” the body language expert noted.

“This time Harry is sitting beside her but he has thrown his head back in what looks like a gesture of helplessness and frustration,” James added.


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Body language expert points out Harry and Meghan’s ‘unity’ in the trailer

James touched on the stark photo of Harry and Meghan at the Commonwealth Day Service at Westminster Abbey, explaining how it portrays Kate Middleton “looking grim-faced and rather haughty and Meghan looking sad and reflective.”

James moved on to the next clip, pointing out how “Harry sits partly splayed on a sofa, shaking his head to revisit that idea of helplessness but with his splayed left arm hinting at confidence and power as he says ‘I had to do everything I could to protect my family.’”

Finally, the trailer ends with Meghan asking, “When the stakes are this high, doesn’t it make more sense to hear our story from us?”

James compared this visual of Meghan with Harry’s “splayed” body language. “In an act of what looks like unity of purpose and objectives over this documentary, Meghan is shown later in an almost identical, mirrored pose to camera, talking about ‘when the stakes are high’ and their enduring love story is clearly featured, with many shots of the couple looking happy and ecstatically happy together,” the expert said.

Showbiz Cheat Sheet acknowledges conditions and cultures can impact body language and is sensitive to all backgrounds.