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Prince Harry defends Netflix's The Crown in James Corden interview

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Caroline Davies
·3-min read
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The Duke of Sussex has defended the Netflix series The Crown, and revealed the Queen sent one-year-old Archie a waffle-maker for Christmas, in an interview with James Corden for The Late Late Show.

Appearing on the US TV show, Prince Harry also spoke about his life in Los Angeles, California, and his and Meghan’s hopes to change the world “in some small way” as he criticised the “toxic” British press.

He stressed he “didn’t walk away” from the royal family. “It was stepping back rather than stepping down.” The British press created a “difficult environment” that was “was destroying my mental health”.

He said: “So I did what any husband, what any father would do. It’s like: ‘I need to get my family out of here.’ But we never walked away.” He added: “I will never walk away. I will always be contributing.”

Of The Crown miniseries, which has been criticised for blurring fact with fiction, Harry said: “It’s fictional. But it’s loosely based on the truth. Of course it’s not strictly accurate.” But it gave a “rough idea” of the pressures of “putting duty and service above family and everything else”, he said.

“I am way more comfortable with The Crown than I am seeing stories written about my family or my wife. That [The Crown] is obviously fiction, take it how you will. But this is being reported on as fact because you’re supposedly news. I have a real issue with that,” he said.

Harry also revealed how his and Meghan’s relationship went from “zero to 60” in the first two months because they were forced to spend so much time alone together. On dating, Harry said: “It’s kind of flipped upside down. All the dates become dinners or watching the TV and chatting at home, then eventually once you become a couple, then you venture out for dinners, the cinema, and everything else.

“Everything was done back to front with us. So we got to spend an enormous amount of time just the two of us … And that was great, an amazing thing.”

Archie’s first word was “crocodile – three syllables”, he told Corden, and his son was already “putting three/four words together” and singing songs. When the Queen asked what Archie wanted for Christmas, Meghan said a waffle-maker, which her Majesty dutifully sent.

The Queen and Prince Philip regularly see Archie over Zoom, he added. A regular night in for the couple is bathing Archie, reading a book, after which Meghan might cook, or they order a takeaway, before watching TV in bed.

It is not clear if the interview was recorded before last week’s announcement the couple would not be returning as working royals, and their statement that “service is universal”, which angered critics who felt it was disrespectful to the Queen.

But Harry told Corden: “My life is always going to be about public service. Meghan signed up to that, and the two of us enjoy doing that, trying to bring compassion, trying to make people happy and trying to change the world in the small way that we can.”

Meghan pops up on a video call, calling him “Haz”, as he and Corden view the mansion used in 1990s sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Told by Corden it would be the “perfect house” for the couple, Meghan laughs: “I think we’ve done enough moving.”