5 Most Brutal Times Meghan Markle Was Name-Dropped On TV Shows

Despite appearing on camera in "Suits" for seven seasons, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, could never have been prepared for life in the spotlight as a member of the royal family. In fairness, though, nobody, in reality could ever be ready to join the Firm. The fact that the actor was a biracial US citizen likely contributed to the intense scrutiny surrounding her relationship with Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, which, in turn, led to Meghan becoming the subject of many a late-night punchline and cartoon parody.

She didn't stand a chance right from the start. Almost as soon as news broke of Meghan and Harry's romance, she was attacked by the press, the public, and her own family. Half-sister Samantha Markle started spilling all the supposed details about Meghan — none positive and most baseless — and even Meghan's father had a scathing opinion of his daughter's marriage to Harry.

After announcing they were leaving public service, Meghan and Harry moved overseas in January 2020, ultimately settling in California. "They have a big support network there. It's where their new team of Hollywood agents and PRs and business managers are based," a source told The Sun, which branded Harry "The Fresh Prince of Bel Heir." Still, if the couple thought it would stop the attacks, they were sorely mistaken. In fact, they ramped up yet further, as evidenced by the brutal ways Meghan was name-dropped on TV.

SNL's coronation castigation

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, unwittingly became the punchline of a "Saturday Night Live" Weekend Update skit in May 2018. The comedy show tackled whether Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, and Meghan would be invited to the upcoming public crowning ceremony of his father, King Charles III, at Westminster Abbey. "It was reported that the organizers of King Charles' coronation have officially invited Meghan Markle. And this is nice: at a starting salary of $19 an hour," host Michael Che quipped as a photoshopped pic of Meghan dressed as a maid flashed up behind him.

The Meghan haters were out in force, flocking to social media to share their appreciation. "LOL!! Meghan is the one who said that she wanted to be paid for her appearances for the Crown. They're giving her more than minimum wage. She should be happy," one hater posted on X, formerly Twitter. "Yes! It's about her behavior & actions. The clapping seals always inject melanin into the discussion. The Pavlov's Dogs chorus line," another wrote, insisting the commentary wasn't race-related.

Meghan's an "SNL" frequent flyer and was the subject of yet another brutal joke in December 2023. "A Christmas photo released by the royal family features a bad Photoshop job where Prince Louis' finger appears to be missing, and this is sweet; Meghan Markle said she has a finger they can use if they need it," Colin Jost announced as a pixelated pic of her flipping the bird appeared.

Chris Rock's racism ridicule

As Will Smith learned the hard way at the 2022 Oscars, Chris Rock is never afraid to take the chance to ridicule and throw shade, no matter the subject or victim. So, it was only a matter of time before Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, found herself in the comedian's crosshairs. That happened in March 2023, when Rock took aim and fired at her claims of being a victim of racism within the royal family.

"Oh, they're so racist, they're so racist. Some of that s**t she went through was not racism. It was just some in-law s**t," he said during his live Netflix show, "Selective Outrage." Rock mocked Meghan over her and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex's claim to Oprah that an anonymous royal joked about what color their baby would be. "That's not racist. Because even black people want to know how brown the baby's going to be," he quipped.

Rock didn't stop there. He mauled Markle for not expecting to be attacked by the British nobility. "It's the royal family! They're the original racists! They invented colonialism," he ranted. "That's like marrying into the Budweiser family and going, 'They drink a lot.'"

South Park's privacy tour takedown

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, and Harry, Duke of Sussex, are not media fans. They consistently complain — with good reason — that the intrusive press coverage to which they are subjected is intolerable. According to The Independent, Harry has sued five outlets for alleged transgressions, ranging from breach of privacy to libel to illegal information gathering.

In a February 2021 interview on "The Late Late Show," Harry told James Corden that one of the primary motivators behind his and Meghan's move to Los Angeles was their inability to cope with the intense media spotlight. "We all know what the British press can be like, and it was destroying my mental health," he explained. "I was like, this is toxic." So, it was understandable that many were confused when the couple decided to share the innermost secret and private moments of their lives with the public, including their infamous Oprah interview and Harry's memoir "Spare." Trey Parker and Matt Stone were among those who ridiculed the seemingly contradictory demand for privacy and attention simultaneously, and the resulting "South Park" episode was brutal.

The two were depicted getting off a private jet, waving placards that read "Stop looking at us" and "We want our privacy." The animated Meghan was torn to shreds during a "Good Morning Canada" interview. "We just want to be normal people. All this attention, it's so hard," she said, in a grating valley girl accent. They end up walking off the stage. 

Family Guy's social media mockery

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, was brutally mocked in animation again during Season 22 of "Family Guy." This time, she and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, came under fire for the Netflix deal they signed in 2020, estimated to be worth $100 million. In April 2024, the streaming giant announced two new shows in the works — a Martha Stewart-style cooking and gardening series created by Meghan and a docuseries about the über-elite sport of polo.

The less-than-exciting and innovative projects left many questioning if Netflix was getting its money's worth. However, as Business Insider noted, it has definitely done better than Spotify. The music giant's failed $20 million deal ended with podcast heavyweight Bill Simmons branding Meghan and Harry "f**king grifters."

In the October 2023 "Family Guy" episode, Meghan was depicted lounging poolside with Harry. "Sir, your millions from Netflix for no one knows what," a butler announced, arriving by their side with a silver platter of cash. "Put it with the rest of them," Harry decreed, waving him away. Meanwhile, Meghan's phone chimed. "Babe, time to do our daily $250,000 sponsored Instagram post for Del Taco," she said. Ouch.

Trevor Noah's Megxit mauling

When Trevor Noah name-dropped Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, on TV in January 2020, it was undoubtedly brutal. Still, unlike other takedowns, it wasn't Meghan who came off the worst. "The British royal family, they're like the Kardashians with an occasional beheading," Noah kicked off. He detailed Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, and Meghan's retirement from public duty, playing a clip of Queen Elizabeth II arriving at Sandringham for "Megxit" crisis talks with Harry, his brother, Prince William, their dad, King Charles III, and Meghan via the phone from Canada.

Noah questioned what triggered Harry and Meghan's decision to leave the U.K. before breaking down the answer in a scathing narrative, attacking the British press, including the Daily Mail's reprehensible November 2016 headline, "Harry's girl is (almost) straight outta Compton," a BBC correspondent's post on X, formerly Twitter, portraying the couple's baby as a chimp and Princess Michael of Kent's blatantly racist choice of jewelry.

The couple discussed the role that racism played in their exit during their March 2021 sit-down with Oprah. Harry claimed an unnamed royal questioned what color his and Meghan's baby would be. "He did not share the identity with me," Oprah told "CBS This Morning" the day after the interview aired. However, she said Harry insisted it "was not his grandmother, nor his grandfather that were a part of those conversations." In his book, "Brothers and Wives," Christopher Anderson claimed the alleged commenter was Charles.