Prince Harry’s ‘Charmless Achilles’ Heel’ Is Exposed and It Could Get Worse

Prince Harry had a special relationship with the public almost from the moment he was born. The public and press around the world loved his mother, Princess Diana, and when her second son was born, everyone rejoiced. That loving relationship continued as Prince Harry grew, and when Princess Diana tragically died, the public grew even more protective of the redheaded royal.

These days, Prince Harry is at risk of losing his favored status, as his and wife Meghan Markle’s war with the press continues. Prince Harry fell from grace and whether or not he can start reclaiming some of the positive press that he used to receive is yet to be determined.

Prince Harry grew up in the spotlight

Prince Harry protocol
Prince Harry | KOEN VAN WEEL/AFP/Getty Images

As a contrast to his older brother Prince William’s reserved nature, Prince Harry has always been known as the fun-loving royal brother. Often seen on camera trying to make other members of his family laugh, he grew up surrounded by love and affection, in spite of the fact that his mother died when he was only twelve years old. He definitely had his share of controversial moments — including a few bouts of drinking in public — but no matter what he did, the public loved and supported Prince Harry. 

He was also often pictured with children, joking around or just engaging with them in a natural manner that led many to compare him to his mother, Princess Diana. For these reasons and many more, Prince Harry was often pointed to as the most lovable member of the royal family. Lately, however, Prince Harry’s public image has definitely suffered, and many royal watchers point to a specific point in time when he started to fall out of favor.

Did Meghan Markle hurt Prince Harry’s image?

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Today, we are excited to be able to announce details for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s upcoming tour to Africa! • In just two weeks, Their Royal Highnesses will embark on this official tour focusing on community, grassroots leadership, women’s and girls’ rights, mental health, HIV/AIDS and the environment. This programme has been many months in the making, and The Duke and Duchess are eager to focus their energies on the great work being done in Southern Africa. From meeting with Archbishop Desmond Tutu to joining ‘Waves for Change’ on Monwabisi Beach, the South Africa programme will be educational and inspiring. The Duke is especially proud to continue the legacy left by his mother with her work in Angola as he joins Halo Trust again in an effort to rid the world of landmines. HRH will also travel to Malawi where he will check in on the British Army’s partnership with African Parks and will be working on the ground supporting local communities. The Duke is particularly proud to be able to deliver an exciting new initiative, a Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy three-country partnership which he designed and consulted with Governments in Namibia, Botswana and Angola to protect forest and wildlife corridors around the Okavango Delta. The Duchess will be working with local organisations to promote women and girls’ health and education, entrepreneurship and leadership. With such a textured culture and history, Their Royal Highnesses are grateful for the opportunity to connect with those on the ground in Southern Africa and to be inspired by the work being done and learn how they can be better supported. As President and Vice President of The Queens Commonwealth Trust and The Duke’s role as Commonwealth Youth Ambassador, The Duke and Duchess cannot wait to meet with young leaders mobilising change and adding to the beauty of these Commonwealth countries • “We look forward to seeing you soon!” • Photo ©️ PA images / Tim Graham – Getty Images / @Sentebale /@AfricanParksNetwork / @YouthAlert

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In May 2018, Prince Harry married his girlfriend: former Suits actress Meghan Markle. Although their wedding was a day full of happiness for the couple, it wouldn’t be long before they started to experience serious problems with both the public and press. Many found fault with Markle right away, taking issue with her personality, her former occupation, and supposed claims that she was “difficult” to work with.

It took a little bit longer for Prince Harry’s public image to suffer. However, this summer, he received a massive amount of negative press. Royal watchers complained that Prince Harry was being too private by keeping his son, Archie Harrison, away from the spotlight too much and that he was a “fake activist” by taking private flights even though he regularly preached the importance of environmental awareness.

Although the palace has stood by Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan, and Prince Harry himself has spoken out in his family’s defense, it is very possible that Prince Harry’s reputation has become broken beyond repair.

How can Prince Harry turn the narrative around?

A recent report from a British publication broke down Prince Harry’s troubles with the press, pointing to his “flawed communications strategy” as the inherent problem. The report defines his current issue as being the result of his “charmless Achilles heel.” The report states that Prince Harry has made an effort to distance himself from the press, creating a barrier rather than inviting them in and making them her allies, just like Princess Diana did.

Amongst reports that the Duchess of Sussex is hiring a new, American-based publicity firm to help manage the couple’s reputation, Prince Harry could likely benefit from a complete change in his approach to media. 

For now, it’s difficult to see how the press could view the couple in the coming months. With a major trip to Africa coming up in a matter of days, Prince Harry and Markle will be able to enjoy a getaway to a place that Prince Harry has called a “second home.” It is very possible that when they return to England, the Sussexes could start to try and shift the narrative and try to establish a better relationship with the public as well as the press.