Nearly 30 years on, the hatred towards Camilla Parker Bowles has been reignited after season four of The Crown explores her infidelity with Prince Charles.
Joining the likes of Monica Lewinsky and Angelina Jolie, Parker Bowles was one half of one of the most widely publicised extra-marital affairs.
And now the vitriol against the 73-year-old has returned with a vengeance, with many flooding her social media pages with antagonistic comments.
The Clarence House Twitter account that focuses on providing updates about Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall has tuned off comments after she became the focus of a barrage of nasty tweets.
— Ingrid Mhor (@IngridM49030268) November 22, 2020
The online hate has also spilled onto the the royal family Instagram page, where some users told Parker Bowles that the world “hates” her.
Many of the comments referenced Princess Diana, and attacked the Duchess for her involvement in the breakdown of the Princess’ marriage with Prince Charles.
I HATE CAMILLA!!!!!! diana deserved so much better that im actually crying….
— Enya☃️(INFP2w3)directioner)SheRa)TOH)atla/tlok)☃️ (@enya_wijk) November 22, 2020
Notably, few comments have been directed at Prince Charles, who was equally involved in the affair.
The court of public opinion
The abuse directed at Parker Bowles is largely to do with the latest season of The Crown, which incorrectly reimagines her romance with Prince Charles.
The hit Netflix series has come under fire for indicating Parker Bowles and Prince Charles conducted an affair throughout his entire marriage, however reports have long suggested it began many years after he had wed Lady Diana.
— ivyarchive (@ivyarchive) November 18, 2020
In Prince Charles’ authorised biography, he confirms he began his affair with Parker Bowles in 1986, five years after his 1981 televised wedding.
The Prince of Wales even clarified in a TV documentary that the scandalous romance did not begin until after his marriage had “irretrievably broken down”.
One user highlighted the fact that many millennials and younger viewers of The Crown may not have been alive to witness the illicit affair when it first made headlines.
Prince Charles is trending because Gen Z and Millenials are (re)learning about the abuse Princess Diana was subject to.
— Anna Gifty (@itsafronomics) November 16, 2020
Sally Bedell Smith, one of the Queen’s royal biographers, said The Crown was irresponsible in its portrayal of Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall.
“I am very sad to say that I have heard it over, over and over again that people take The Crown at face value and they believe everything they see in the series, and that includes Charles and Camilla,” Ms Bedell Smith said.
“The notion in the programme that he entered into his marriage cynically with a view to continuing with Camilla and putting his new wife on the side is exceedingly dishonest and damaging. It is just simply not true.”
It seems Parker Bowles’ character (played by Emerald Fennell) had it right when she declared that “[Princess Diana] will always defeat me in the court of public opinion.”