How Meghan Markle Became One Of The Most Hated Celebs On The Internet

Meghan Markle skyrocketed to stardom as the unflappable Rachel Zane on "Suits." But in 2016, after a seven-year run on the series, her life flipped the script. She was set up with Prince Harry through a friend, and after their first date at SoHo House in London, she knew this was different. "He was just so fun. Just so refreshingly fun. And that was the thing, we were like childlike together," she recalled in the Netflix docuseries, "Harry & Meghan," according to Elle. They successfully kept their romance under wraps, even taking a covert trip to Africa. All the while, the world was oblivious that the youngest son of then-Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana had found love. However, before long, Markle would become one of the most hated celebrities on the internet. 

A royal engagement followed by a royal wedding and, of course, a royal baby was next on the agenda for Markle, but all of those wonderful milestones came with a side of depression that no one prepared her for. Perhaps it was just the jitters of becoming the wife of a prince, but there was a point in time when Markle felt that the world was against her, and the only option that she and her husband felt they had was to get out. Of course, this made the hatred for Markle reach a boiling point. However, looking back, it seemed to be just the tip of the iceberg. 

Meghan Markle's race has played a role in the criticism she receives.

Meghan Markle was born in 1981 to a White father and a Black mother. She's always been proud of her biracial heritage, having advocated for both race and gender equality long before she became the Duchess of Sussex. However, when a mixed-race Markle fell in love with Prince Harry, many people, especially Britons, focused more on the race part and less on the love part. Indeed, it seems some of the hatred surrounding Markle involves nothing more than the color of her skin.

From the moment Markle stepped on the scene, there was a level of downright disgust from people all over the globe. "It was never going to end well," Birmingham University professor Kehinde Andrews told CNN. "The British royal family is one of the premiere symbols of whiteness in the world. She was never going to be fully accepted," he added. This wasn't more evident than when Markle became pregnant with her first child. In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, she said that someone in the royal family was concerned with the baby's "skin tone." And while this caused some outrage, it actually drummed up more hatred for Markle, who dared speak out against the heralded royals. Unsurprisingly, the bombshell got a response from the firm, with Prince William going on the defense, telling reporters, "We are very much not a racist family," according to NBC News.

Meghan Markle often plays the victim

One thing that anti-Meghan Markle people often say is that she is really good at playing the victim. In fact, some of Markle's harshest critics have accused her of having a sort of woe-is-me attitude, which hasn't gone over well with the masses. For many, it seems as though Markle's attempts to tell her story and to set the record straight involve details designed to make people feel bad for her. "I don't like victimhood, and I've never played it myself," journalist Marjorie Wallace said on the "Difficult Women" podcast in January 2023, in response to the "Harry & Meghan" docuseries released on Netflix. "I don't think playing the victim card helps, whatever you're the victim of. I don't really respect people who take victimhood on as a career," she added. 

Accusations of Markle's victim mentality go beyond what she experienced living in the confines of the royal family for two years. During an episode of her "Archetypes" podcast, for example, Markle discussed her time on "Deal or No Deal," opening up about how she felt "objectified." And the internet hated every minute. "It's never Meghan Markle's fault. It's always someone else's fault. That's what you call a narcissist," conservative Steven Crowder tweeted after the podcast episode was released.

Meghan Markle was accused of bullying

No one likes a bully. In October 2018, at least one of Meghan Markle's aides is said to have made a formal complaint, alleging the Duchess of Sussex had bullied her. "The duchess is saddened by this latest attack on her character, particularly as someone who has been the target of bullying herself and is deeply committed to supporting those who have experienced pain and trauma," a statement from Markle's spokesperson read, per BBC News. Buckingham Palace was quick to launch an investigation into the claims, though the findings were kept private. Meanwhile, a source told Fox News Digital that the palace required staff members to sign NDAs to keep things of this nature under wraps, which could be why the case was closed without any additional information supplied to the public. "These were people who felt they had suffered while working for Meghan," journalist Valentine Low, who wrote the initial report, told Newsweek in October 2022.

After the whole ordeal, Prince Harry went on record defending his wife during an episode of his docuseries, "The Me You Can't See." He felt that the whole thing was meant to slander his wife and placed blame on the palace as well as the media. He went on to say that Meghan would cry "in her pillow" at night because she was so broken up over what had transpired. For more on how the public feels about this narrative, please see the previous slide.

One word: Megxit

As mentioned a bit earlier on, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's decision to step down as senior members of the royal family and move out of the UK was really a tipping point, not only for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex but also for people who had been so highly critical of Meghan in recent years. In an interview with Anderson Cooper, Harry explained that his family was rather uncomfortable with bringing Markle into the fold. "Right from the beginning, before they even had a chance to get to know her," he said on an episode of "60 Minutes." And it seems that the internet picked up on those cues, despising Markle from the jump. However, when the duo announced they'd be leaving the royal family? Forget it. Markle became public enemy #1.

The majority of people who hate Markle feel as though she was the sole cause of breaking up a family — and not just any family. "She just isn't a good person, and she 100% ruined his whole a** life with her bs," one person commented on a Reddit thread titled, "Meghan Markle ruined Prince Harry's life." But the criticism didn't stop there, even though Harry has made it clear that he's long felt that royal life wasn't for him. Since his departure, Harry's relationship with his family has become even more strained, which has been a sad thing for royal watchers around the globe — many of whom feel that Markle is to blame.

Meghan Markle's interview with Oprah Winfrey didn't go over well

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's sit-down interview with Oprah Winfrey is arguably one of the most criticized of all time. Okay, yes, the interview was ratings gold — a major win for the queen of daytime talk — but the reviews were mixed. Perhaps the main criticism came from people trying to understand why the duo, which left the UK to seek out peace and privacy, went on national television to spill some tea. Others seemed very upset that Markle essentially put Harry's family on blast, regardless of how she feels or what she says they did or didn't do to help her during her time of need.

"I find it quite sad that Harry and Meghan would decide to air such serious allegations about the monarchy, HIS FAMILY, on national TV. I think they really misjudged how this interview would be perceived," one person commented on a New York Times article asking for feedback on the interview. "Meghan and Harry's 'truth' has more holes than Swiss cheese," read another. "I think this interview was a calculated exercise to try and get the couple the popularity they need to make a living in the US," a third person suggested. Others felt the interview was in poor taste because it was filmed after Prince Philip had been hospitalized. What's more, the interview aired just weeks before the death of Prince Philip, with his health being a major concern for the whole family at the time.

Meghan Markle has been caught in lies

Liar, liar. The hate surrounding Meghan Markle has only increased each time someone has caught her in a lie. On an episode of their Netflix show, "Harry & Meghan," for example, Markle made it known that she always chose to wear "muted tones" so as to not interfere with Queen Elizabeth's wardrobe choices. "Most of the time that I was in the UK, I rarely wore color," Markle stated, according to People. Within hours, there were all kinds of photos and videos on social media of the Duchess of Sussex in the brightest outfits. Markle also claimed that some of her personal belongings were taken from her upon entry into the royal family, like her passport. However, many people pointed out that the well-traveled duchess wouldn't have been able to get into other countries without the document.

Someone who has been extremely critical of Markle is journalist and television personality Piers Morgan. Following Markle's interview with Oprah Winfrey, Morgan went on a bit of a tear, ripping apart things that Markle said and accusing her of lying. Morgan even ended up leaving his job at "Good Morning Britain" over a back-and-forth about Markle on air. But he maintains everything he's said. "You know, she claimed they got married three days before the big global wedding we saw on television. I knew that – I knew that couldn't have happened because she said it was just the two of them with the Archbishop of Canterbury, the most powerful churchman in Britain," he told Tucker Carlson in 2021.

Meghan Markle was highly criticized for the 'Harry & Meghan' docuseries

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are on their own financially after parting ways with the royal family. Forced to find a way to earn money, the duo has landed a couple of lucrative deals with major companies, with Netflix being one notable example. As part of that deal, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex brought a docuseries called "Harry & Meghan" to life. The six-part series offered an inside look into the couple's journey, from the time they met to Megxit and into everyday life in their Montecito mansion with their two young kids. While many may have enjoyed watching the candid moments between the couple, others were not pleased with yet another way for Markle to put herself front and center after essentially begging for a life out of the public eye.

Moreover, there were various parts of the series that some people found downright offensive, such as Markle's mocking of a curtsy. The instance came when Markle talked about the first time she'd met Harry's grandmother, Queen Elizabeth. "I didn't know I was going to meet her until moments before," she explained. "I remember we were in the car, driving, and he's like, 'You know how to curtsy, right?' And I just thought it was a joke," she recalled. From there, Markle did an exaggerated, awkward bow from her seat as her husband looked on. According to Today, many people found Markle's move impolite. Suffice it to say she did not score any points with this one.

Meghan Markle's Spotify podcast was a flop

In December 2020, Meghan Markle landed a deal with Spotify in connection with Archewell Studios, which she and Prince Harry cofounded. In August 2022, Markle launched a podcast called "Archetypes." The series promised to showcase "women across generations who conquered tropes in their lives to inspire a new generation" and featured guests such as Serena Williams, Jameela Jamil, and Issa Rae, to name a few. The podcast wasn't successful, and the relationship between Spotify and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex came to an end. But it's what transpired next that made headlines.

Spotify executive Bill Simmons called out Harry and Markle on an episode of his own podcast, expressing happiness that the deal ended. "I gotta get drunk one night and tell the story of the Zoom I had with Harry to try and help him with a podcast idea. It's one of my best stories," he continued. Meanwhile, talent agent Jeremy Zimmer jumped on the anti-Markle wagon in a bit of a rant of his own. "Turns out Meghan Markle was not a great audio talent, or necessarily any kind of talent," Zimmer told Semafor. "And, you know, just because you're famous doesn't make you great at something," he added. 

Meghan Markle isn't best friends with Kate Middleton

When Meghan Markle entered Prince Harry's life, royal watchers everywhere were excited about what she would bring to the table. Many pictured an unstoppable force when she teamed up with Kate Middleton to take on the world. "I couldn't wait for them to meet her, that I looked forward to the four of us spending lots of time together, and I confessed, for the umpteenth time, that this had long been my dream — to join them with an equal partner. To become a foursome," Harry wrote in his memoir "Spare," according to Page Six. As we know now, that never happened. Although they made some appearances together, Markle never built a strong connection with her sister-in-law — who is beloved by millions of people. And if you can't be besties with the future queen of England, well, people will feed off that — and that's just what happened. 

Things got even worse when a report surfaced claiming that Markle made Middleton cry ahead of her wedding to Harry — something about the bridesmaid's dresses. During her sit-down with Oprah Winfrey, Markle attempted to set the record straight, saying that it was actually the Princess of Wales that made her cry, but later apologized and "brought [her] flowers." But most people had a hard time believing that. The reason? Please refer to the chapter on lying located above.