Spotify axes Meghan Markle’s podcast after just one series

Meghan Markle's podcast terminated only after 12 episodes. Source: Getty

As the old saying goes, “All good things must come to an end.”

But “good” may not have been the reason behind Spotify’s termination of Meghan Markle’s Archetypes podcast, only one year after its launch.

Spotify and Archewell Audio, the podcast production company founded by Meghan and her husband Prince Harry, have officially ended their commercial partnership with the couple.

The exact reason for the termination remains undisclosed as both parties announced the decision without elaboration.

The deal between Spotify and Archewell Audio was first announced in December 2020 as an exclusive “multiyear partnership” focused on producing podcasts and shows that shared uplifting and entertaining stories with Spotify’s vast audience.

The podcast aimed to look into the labels that held women back and featured discussions with prominent guests such as Serena Williams, Mariah Carey, and Mindy Kaling.


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Archetypes quickly climbed to the top of the platform’s most listened-to podcasts in its debut week in August 2020. However, the podcast’s longevity was cut short, with only one 12-episode season produced.

Dawn Ostroff, Spotify’s chief content and advertising business officer, had previously praised Prince Harry and Meghan as “citizens of the world”, applauding their mission to amplify underrepresented voices through their work.

However, following the termination of the partnership, Bill Simmons, Spotify’s head of podcast innovation and monetisation, publicly criticised the couple, referring to them as “grifters” on his own podcast.

Controversy surrounding Archetypes has also recently emerged after reports suggested that some of the interviews featured on the podcast were not conducted directly by Meghan.

Podnews reported that members of the Duchess’s staff conducted certain interviews, and Meghan’s voice asking the questions was added in post-production.

The allegations gained attention after writer Allison Yarrow shared on Instagram that she was excited to be included in the visionary series but posted the message alongside a sign for Gimlet Media, another audio production house.

According to the Daily Mail, Yarrow’s explanations on the podcast were edited between comments made by the Duchess. Archewell Audio is yet to comment on these allegations.

The split from Spotify’s partnership also comes at a critical turning point in Harry and Meghan’s post-royalty careers.

Despite stepping back from their senior roles within the royal family and starting a new chapter in California, it appears that Meghan and Harry’s various projects have yet to gain significant traction or achieve the level of success they may have anticipated.

The termination of Meghan’s podcast partnership with Spotify is not the first instance of an entertainment venture coming to an early end for the Duchess.

In May 2022, it was reported that Netflix had scrapped plans for her animated series called Pearl, which was part of the multiyear deal between the streaming giant and Prince Harry and Meghan.

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