Harry says he’s finally living his ‘real’ life… so why does he look so unhappy?
With the world still reeling from the big Harry and Meghan interview, one thing to note is how astonishing it proved to the British public, given how much we knew in advance. Forget Meghan – rehearsed, polished, ever the actress – as tearily articulate as we imagined in her Little Mermaid meets Chicken Run Hameau de la Reine. No, the real shocker was Harry: blotchy with anger, twitchy with rage, his fury palpable. In place of the cheeky chappy of old, the Prince seemed like some horribly wounded animal: seething, tormented, his features contorting as he made accusation after accusation about the family he once cherished. “We’re in a lot of pain,” he declared, and that was evident. Here was a man embittered, broken, flailing about to hurt others, as he himself had been hurt. Whatever this spectacle meant to the millennial and Gen Z viewers who identify with the Sussex cause, it felt like nothing short of a tragedy for we 40-pluses who have grown to love Harry. Because we do love him, in that fond way in which we regard the young Royals we witness grow up. The image of 12-year-old Harry walking behind his mother’s coffin was seared into the collective consciousness. It meant that – when he found love – we could not have been more ecstatic; his joy, ours. Harry was the nation’s loveable rogue, full of mirth despite the horrors of his childhood, bursting with charisma, always ready with a joke and a hug. His teen rebellion was indulged, his military career respected. If not the brightest biscuit in the box, he was certainly the most kindly, the most affable. Children adored him, old people adored him, we all adored him. Now, he insists that we impose a re-reading in which the Prince Hal of old was a façade: the surface show of a man caged. The Hazzer we loved was a smiling automaton, our Prince Charming simply going through the motions, smiling at people merely “part of the job”. Meanwhile, having abandoned his home, his country, his career, friends and family, he is finally living his “real” life. So why does he look so blisteringly unhappy? Where Meghan was strategically vague in her accusations, Harry was spade-calling, all woke doublespeak about kindness while on the attack. The main targets were his formerly beloved father and brother.