February 8, 2023

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What we learned from Harry & Meghan Part Two

LONDON – The second and final part of Harry and Meghan, the highly-anticipated Netflix documentary, was released on Thursday, capping a week that has seen the couple’s personal life once again catapulted into the spotlight.

The first three episodes of the series, released last week, delved into the basics of the couple’s relationship, their ongoing battle with the news media, the details of Meghan’s troubled family connections and more.

Love them, hate them, or just can’t live without them, people tuned in. The first volume of episodes racked up a staggering 81.5 million viewing hours, the most of any documentary in a premiere week, Netflix said Tuesday. More than 28 million households watched part of the first episode collection in the first four days, the streaming platform added.

Episode four picks up from Harry and Meghan’s wedding in May 2018 and quickly delves into a range of issues, including Meghan’s connection to Queen Elizabeth II, the barrage of negative headlines she has faced and her mental health struggles.

If you don’t have time to watch or like spoilers, here are the key takeaways from the latest episodes.

The fourth episode began by reliving the couple’s star-studded May 2018 wedding. Though thousands of people took to the streets hoping to catch a glimpse of the couple, and perhaps billions more watched on TV, the couple described it as a family affair, with numerous personal details that seemed to make all the difference.

Harry chose the song Meghan walked down the aisle to. “It was so beautiful,” she said. It was also revealed that King Charles, Harry’s father and then known as the Prince of Wales, helped choose the orchestra for the ceremony.

Since Megan’s father, Thomas Markle, did not attend the ceremony, she asked Charles to walk her down the aisle. “Harry’s father is very charming,” Meghan said. “I said to him, ‘I lost my father in this.’ So he was very important to me as my father-in-law.”

The episode looks at Meghan’s first official royal engagement to the Queen, about a month after the wedding. She and the Queen took the royal train to Cheshire, England.

“I treated her like my husband’s grandma,” Meghan said, recalling her private time with the Queen. “When we got in the car between engagements, she had a blanket,” Meghan said, and the queen also draped the blanket over her knees. “I recognize and respect and see that you are the queen, but in this moment I’m so thankful that there is a grandmother because it feels like family,” Meghan said.

The fourth episode also underscored the mental health issues and suicidal thoughts Meghan had, in part because of negative headlines shortly after her wedding and throughout much of her pregnancy.

“All of this will stop when I’m not here, and that was the scariest thing about it — it was such clear thinking,” Meghan said.

Doria Ragland, Meghan’s mother, recalled an emotional conversation in which Meghan expressed suicidal thoughts. “It’s not easy for a mother to hear,” she said, wiping away tears. “And I can’t protect her. H cannot protect her.”

Harry said he was devastated by the toll the negative press coverage was taking on his wife and said he hadn’t dealt with it well.

“I’ve been trained to be more concerned about what people are going to think,” Harry said. “And looking back on it now, I hate myself for it. What she needed from me was so much more than I could give.”

This story will be updated. Check back for more.