How Prince Harry And Meghan Markle Really Felt About Family Guy's Brutal Depiction Of Them

When Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, Duke and Duchess of Sussex, exchanged vows in May 2018, it seemed like a real-life Hallmark movie. Who could resist a romance between an American commoner and the son of a future king? Then the fairy tale turned out to be more like "Into the Woods," as the Sussexes found the disadvantages of being a royal couple outweighed the fancy perks. Fleeing the UK for the laid-back California life hasn't helped matters much. In fact, their post-palace doings have stirred up even more criticism and outright mockery from both sides of the pond — including a ribbing from some very popular animated series.

In October 2023, "Family Guy" aired an episode in which lead character Peter Griffin has a beef with Tom Selleck over a shady reverse mortgage deal. He vows to "go it alone, just like Meghan Markle and Prince Harry," and the scene abruptly cuts to the ex-royals basking by a pool as their butler brings them their "millions from Netflix for no one knows what." Just then, Meghan reminds her hub that it's time to do their "daily $250,000 sponsored Instagram post for Del Taco," to which the disgusted prince replies, "I shouldn't have left the made-up nonsense."

The spoof reportedly didn't go over well with the Sussexes. Sources told Closer magazine the two considered the episode an "outrageous slur" to their reputations, as well as further proof "they're not being taken seriously enough." 

Harry and Meghan got roasted by 'South Park,' too

As humiliating as the "Family Guy" joke was, some believed it paled by comparison to an episode of "South Park" that aired earlier that year. "The Worldwide Privacy Tour" episode showed "the prince of Canada" and his wife moving to South Park for a quieter life away from media scrutiny. They moved into a house right across the street from Kyle, one of the series' wisecracking kids. Far from being reclusive, however, the royal duo appeared on talk shows, hung banners on their new home, and walked around town waving signs saying "Stop Looking at Us!" and "We Want Our Privacy!" Their antics were so rowdy — setting off fireworks and playing polo in the front yard — Kyle had to call the police for disturbing the peace. Prince Harry's startling memoir "Spare" was lampooned in the episode as a book called "WAAAGH," suggesting the prince's painful memories were little more than childish whining.

The biting parody was said to have left Meghan "upset and overwhelmed," according to sources who spoke to The Spectator. Rumors even flew about a possible lawsuit against the show creators, but a rep for the couple quickly shot down the murmuring. Speaking to The Guardian, the Sussexes' spokesperson said, "It's all frankly nonsense. Totally baseless, boring reports." Though the couple might not have been thrilled, other family members reportedly were. Omid Scobie's royal biography "Endgame" claimed William and Catherine, the Prince and Princess of Wales, found the "South Park" episode "hilarious," per The Express

Could Meghan and Harry appear on another popular cartoon?

What really rubbed the Sussexes the wrong way about the "Family Guy" spoof, sources told Closer, was the show's portrayal of them as idle California celebs getting paid for doing nothing. In fact, the couple does do quite a bit of public service in addition to their media appearances. Most notably, the Invictus Games, an event created by Prince Harry, helps wounded veterans reclaim their mental health and self-worth through sports competitions. The Sussexes' Archewell Foundation, named for their son Archie, donates millions of dollars to charities close to their heart. Among them is the Halo Trust, a foundation devoted to clearing land mines in war-torn countries. It was a cause supported by Harry's mother, the late Princess Diana. Some speculate that if Harry becomes a U.S. citizen, it might destroy his relationship with his family for good, but it could also free him to pursue more humanitarian work without the restrictions he could face as a nonworking royal. 

In the meantime, Harry and Meghan Markle might initiate a bit of payback one day by accepting the invite of another iconic animated series. Back in 2020, "The Simpsons" producer Al Jean told the U.S. Sun he'd love to have the black sheep royals on the show, playing themselves. "We've talked about Harry and Meghan. I hear she wants to do voiceover work," he said. "So if they're reading this, give us a call!"