Keeping up appearances. Prince Harry appeared to be “trying to protect himself” at King Charles III’s coronation with his guarded body language, an expert exclusively tells Us Weekly.
“He hasn’t changed his mindset [toward the family] from anything that I’ve seen,” body language guru Traci Brown says after seeing photos of Harry, 38, putting his hand under his vest upon arrival at Westminster Abbey on Saturday, May 6. “He’s on the same page that he’s always been. I don’t see any improvements.”
The Persuasion Point: Body Language and Speech for Influence author notes that the prince’s demeanor coming into the church showed the “same old patterns” from Harry. The former military pilot’s “crooked” smile “says contempt,” the expert explains.
While the Duke of Sussex, who attended the coronation without wife Meghan Markle, cracked a smile during the ceremony — and with his cousins Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie — overall, his body language hinted at his ongoing tension with the king, 74, and his brother, Prince William.
“No one’s deviated from anything. No one’s patched anything up since we’ve heard from them last,” Brown tells Us, pointing out that the buttoned-up appearances from most of the royals show “they’re going through the motions of what they think they need to do to get King Charles off the ground” as the ruler.
Harry, who was seated in the third row of the church on Saturday behind his brother, 40, and sister-in-law, Princess Kate, hasn’t spent much time with the members of his family since he and wife Meghan, 41, stepped down as working members of the royal family in 2020.
The couple ultimately settled down in California to raise their two kids: Archie, 4, and Lilibet, 23 months. The Duchess of Sussex, for her part, did not attend the royal event Saturday as she stayed home with her children to celebrate Archie’s birthday.
Harry and Meghan’s relationship with The Firm took a turn for the worst when the retired military pilot and the Suits alum told their side of the story of their royal exit in their docuseries, Harry & Meghan, in December 2022. Harry, meanwhile, continued to speak out about his ongoing family drama in his memoir, Spare, which was released in January.
In both projects, the Invictus Games founder opened up about his complicated relationship with his brother over the years due to their line of succession to the throne.
“Two years older than me, Willy was the Heir, whereas I was the Spare. This wasn’t merely how the press referred to us — though it was definitely that. This was shorthand often used by Pa [Charles] and Mummy [Princess Diana] and Grandpa [Prince Philip]. And even Granny [Queen Elizabeth II],” he wrote about the nickname in his tell-all. “I was summoned to provide backup, distraction, diversion and, if necessary, a spare part. Kidney, perhaps. Blood transfusion. Speck of bone marrow. This was all made explicitly clear to me from the start of life’s journey and regularly reinforced after.”
Harry also recalled how tension between him and his brother began to boil over after William allegedly called Meghan “difficult” and “rude,” which led the siblings to get into a physical altercation.
According to Charles’ youngest son, his shirt was ripped and his necklace was broken after the older prince knocked him to the floor. Harry claimed that William told him not to tell Meghan about the exchange, which allegedly left Harry with “scrapes and bruises.”
While promoting his book with several TV interviews, Harry shared his concerns of history possibly repeating itself for his niece and nephews.
“And though William and I have talked about it once or twice, and he has made it very clear to me that his kids are not my responsibility, I still feel a responsibility knowing that out of those three children, at least one will end up like me, the spare,” the Archewell cofounder admitted during a January interview with The Telegraph. “And that hurts, that worries me.”
Ahead of Harry’s trip across the pond, royal expert Nick Bullen exclusively told Us that Harry was “nervous” about the coronation.
”I think it’s pretty clear that he’s gonna minimize the amount of time that he’s in London,” the editor-in-chief of True Royalty TV told Us. “He’s already said that he wants to be back for Archie’s birthday that afternoon, that evening.”
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Bullen also noted that there had been “no discussions between Harry and William” amid the drama. “That is absolutely radio silence,” he said. “It’s a very big void.”