'Harry & Meghan' on Netflix: The Biggest Revelations

The Sussexes tell it their way.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle
(Image credit: Getty)

After months of wait, the first three episodes of Harry & Meghan—Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Netflix docuseries about their lives behind the scenes—have dropped.

Aided by friends, employees, historians, and of course director Liz Garbus and her team, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex told their stories themselves, as they saw them happen.

The result is the touching tale of a royal love story soured by prejudice, racism, and a relentless tabloid press.

Here's everything we learned from this unprecedented docuseries, and everything you might have missed.

Episode 1

All interviews were filmed before the Queen's passing

A disclaimer before the first episode reads, "All interviews were completed by August 2022. Members of the Royal Family declined to comment on the content within this series."

This is significant, given the extra criticism the series' existence received following the Queen's death in September.

Harry and Meghan privately documented their royal exit

A friend suggested it, in case they wanted to tell their story someday to counter misinformation, and the series uses footage filmed on the royal couple's phones of them preparing to leave for Canada in March 2020 and all the emotional journey that went with that.

Meghan has two sweet nicknames for Harry

She calls him "Haz" and "H."

Meghan was "really intent on being single" when she met Harry

Meghan explained that she had been single for a couple of months in July 2016, and was really excited to travel the world with her girlfriends. But, she said, "And then came H."

Harry and Meghan met through Instagram

I suppose we'd all assume the royals have private social media accounts if we thought about it, but it actually hadn't occurred to me that Harry would have had one. But he did, and that's how he and Meghan first connected. He saw a picture of Meghan on his friend's feed, and asked her who she was.

The friend emailed Meghan and essentially set them up. The duchess loved his pictures of animals and nature from his conservancy work in Africa, and they slid into each other's DMs. A real fairytale for modern times.

He was late to their first date, and she was late to their second

Harry was half an hour late to their first date, which almost put Meghan off because she thought it was a game he played, where he thought women would just wait for him. But he was stuck in traffic, and arrived all red, sweaty and frazzled, so she realized it wasn't an act.

To even things out, Meghan was five minutes late for their second date, the next evening.

Harry had a list of what he wanted in a woman

Meghan revealed this nugget, and the interviewer asked Harry to tell her what was on it. Harry refused to answer, then said smoothly, "this is the list," while gesturing towards Meghan.

Harry implied Charles married Diana because she "fit the mold"

He said, "I think for so many people in the family, especially obviously the men, there can be a temptation or an urge to marry someone who would fit the mold, as opposed to somebody who you perhaps are destined to be with."

This is most likely referencing Harry's parents' marriage, but can also be interpreted as a dig toward William and Kate. Of course, Harry doesn't say as much, so it's very much up to us to draw our own conclusions.

Harry worried he would make any wife suffer

Heartbreakingly, Harry didn't know how he would find a partner who would be willing to deal with the royal Firm. His first few girlfriends were hounded by the press, and he felt like the women he met after that avoided dating him because of it. He was "terrified" that the media would drive Meghan away, as well.

Harry says the people of Lesotho "brought him up," after he didn't get much support in the U.K.

Harry felt he didn't have much support at home in the U.K. after the death of his mom, and he found solace and purpose meeting communities in Lesotho, where he cofounded Sentebale with Prince Seeiso. There, the latter gave Harry the nickname "Mahale," meaning "warrior" in Sesotho.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry

(Image credit: Getty)

Episode 2

Harry looks clearly shaken when followed by paparazzi

Episode 2 opens with scenes of Harry and Meghan getting into a car in New York, and shows Harry obviously concerned and nervous that they are being followed by paparazzi. Meghan holds his hand in a reassuring gesture.

What Meghan was like as a child

Meghan once wrote a letter to her principal promising that when she was "rich and famous," she would make sure to talk about her. The principal appears in this docuseries, which is pretty touching.

The duchess also explains that she was very much a "nerd" as a child, and that being mixed-race was a difficult part of her identity.

The Royal Family didn't understand how much of a role race played in welcoming Meghan

When Meghan started publicly dating Harry, the Royal Family felt that the press attention she was getting was normal, a "rite of passage" that would soon die down. But for Harry, they didn't understand how important race was in all this, and how many racial undertones were present in tabloid coverage of the couple.

Harry said, "Some of the members of the family, it was like, 'Right, but my wife had to go through that, so why should your girlfriend be treated any different?" This quote was played over footage of Fergie and Princess Kate being papped. "And I said, 'The difference here is the race element,'" Harry recalled.

Harry and Meghan didn't want to repeat their families' mistakes

The documentary shows a sweet scene of the parents with Archie, looking at hummingbirds. Both Meghan and Harry discussed how their parents' divorces impacted them, and talked about trying to avoid the mistakes their parents made when bringing them up.

Meghan was shocked at how formal William and Kate were behind closed doors

Meghan recalled her first dinner with William and Kate, when she welcomed them in ripped jeans and barefoot and gave them big hugs. "I was a hugger, I've always been a hugger, I didn't realize that that was really jarring for a lot of Brits," she said.

She also remembered her surprise at having to curtsy to the Queen, and that Princess Eugenie, Jack Brooksbank, and Fergie told her she'd done great the first time.

How Harry proposed

Harry revealed how he proposed, and made a funny joke, too. "What position were you in?" the interviewer asked. "Uh, downward dog," he deadpanned.

But really, he said he got down on one knee, and Meghan said "Yes!" really excitedly.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

(Image credit: Getty)

Episode 3

Samantha Markle's daughter tells her side of the story

The biggest bombshell in this episode is the inclusion of Ashleigh, Meghan's niece and the daughter of her estranged sister Samantha Markle. Ashleigh and Meghan connected when they were younger and became fast friends, which both of them had always craved in their lives.

Sadly, though, the Royal Family thought it was best not to invite Ashleigh to their wedding, because of the optics involved in Samantha not being invited.

Meghan calls their engagement interview an "orchestrated reality show"

Both Harry and Meghan recalled rehearsing their official interview, and it was all very reminiscent of the part in their Oprah interview where Meghan told her she was "silenced."

Harry says Diana and Meghan would be "thick as thieves"

Harry believes his mom and his wife would get along like a house on fire. 

Harry and Archie are both big fans of Elton John

In one scene, Meghan asks Harry to DJ, and he plays Elton John's "Bennie and the Jets." Meghan then says that Archie, who was 2 at the time, loved that song, and was always going around singing, "Bennie! Bennie!"

The racist history of the Royal Family and what it meant for a Black duchess

The documentary focuses heavily on the colonial and racist history of the Royal Family, and how this impacted the significance of a Black woman joining the family. Many Black Britons were overjoyed, but many were also not surprised when racism began to be leveled against Meghan.

In it, Harry also expresses his deep regret for the Nazi costume he once wore to a party, which generated the worldwide scandal you've likely heard about. He says he hopes he's learned a lot from this mistake.

Meghan had to google the British national anthem

Of course, Meghan is American, so she didn't know the words to "God Save the Queen." She googled it and practiced it ahead of official event, she recalled. Plus, she called The Princess Diaries an "old movie," which I find very insulting to me personally.

Harry blames himself for Meghan losing her relationship with her dad

At one point, Harry says that if Meghan hadn't met him, she wouldn't have lost her relationship with her dad Thomas Markle. Meghan and Thomas stopped being in contact after he repeatedly spoke to the media and staged photo shoots ahead of her wedding.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The Next Episodes

From the preview, it looks like the next installment will cover everything after Harry and Meghan's royal wedding, and focus especially on their tumultuous royal exit.

Speaking about this aspect, Meghan said, "This is when a family and a family business are in direct conflict."

Harry added, "Everything that's happened to us was always going to happen to us. There was no other option at this point. I said, 'We need to get out of here.'"

Iris Goldsztajn
Morning Editor

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of British Vogue, InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Refinery29 and SELF. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.