Prince Harry & Meghan Markle Netflix Docuseries Snubbed By Emmy Voters

Netflix’s megahit documentary series on Prince Harry and Meghan Markle failed to earn any Emmy nominations this morning, a snub that presumably will delight critics of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. 

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The six-part series Harry & Meghan directed by Liz Garbus was under consideration for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Series. The Emmy oversight is particularly glaring because the series scored extraordinary numbers for Netflix, racking up the second most viewing minutes of any documentary program on the streaming platform, behind only The Tinder Swindler.

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As a consolation, Harry & Meghan did earn an honor on Tuesday when it was nominated for the Hollywood Critics Association Awards in the category of Best Streaming Nonfiction Series.

The series dropped on Netflix last December, immediately triggering an uproar in the UK because of Prince Harry’s candid words about the Royal Family. In one episode, he said his family exhibits a “huge level of unconscious bias,” although he suggested it wasn’t the fault of individuals, but reflective of the culture broadly speaking. He did add, “Once it’s been pointed out or identified within yourself, you then need to make it right. It’s education, it’s awareness and it’s a constant work-in-progress for everyone, including me.”

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Prince Harry also said that when his relationship with Meghan became public and the British media played up Markle’s biracial background, the Palace told the couple to ignore that element of coverage.

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“As far as a lot of the family was concerned, everything that she was being put through, they’d been put through as well,” the Prince said. “So, it was almost like a rite of passage. Some of the members of the family were like, ‘But my wife had to go through that, so why should your girlfriend be treated any differently? Why should you get special treatment? Why should she be protected?’ And I said, ‘The difference here is the race element.’”

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Meghan also complained of unflattering stories which she said were planted in the British press, accusing U.K. media of “going through the woodwork and pulling people out to create and plant the most salacious stories that they could.”

The series was part of a Netflix production deal with the Duke and Duchess, reportedly pegged at $100 million. British media picked apart elements of the series, questioning whether some footage meant to show the paparazzi crush around the couple was misleading and was actually shot at benign events like a movie premiere. The production also came in for some criticism for making it appear the series was filmed at the couple’s home in Montecito, Calif., but in fact the footage was shot at a different property than their residence.

The Hollywood Critics Association nomination on Tuesday triggered a wave of criticism from some commenters on Twitter. One called the series “more fiction than nonfiction.” Another attacked Harry and Meghan as “whiners.” 

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In the U.S., the couple has typically enjoyed more favorable coverage than in the UK. However, a Newsweek poll of Americans published earlier this month did find approval for the prince had declined from 52 percent in the last quarter of 2022 to 46 percent in the first quarter of this year. Meghan Markle’s approval dipped slightly, from 38 to 36 percent.

Meanwhile, that survey found support among Americans for Prince William, the future king, had slipped from 45 percent to 43 percent. Approval of his wife, Kate Middleton, dropped a point from 46 to 45 percent.

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