Prince Philip death joke on Netflix comedy special 'too far' say viewers

Prince Philip's death joke on a Netflix comedy special—fans think the language used was too disrespectful of the Queen's late husband

Prince Philip with the Queen, Elizabeth II
(Image credit: Tim Graham/Getty Images)

Prince Philip's death was joked about on a Netflix comedy special and viewers have expressed anguish at the language used. Although some viewers say the joke was too disrespectful to the Queen's late husband, others are also seeing the funny side.


A new Netflix comedy special has been criticized for making fun of one of 2021's most notable events, when Prince Philip died aged 99 at Windsor Castle.

Death To 2021 premiered on Netflix on December 27 and is the second installment of the satirical mockumentary—the first being Death To 2020, released last year.

The special, written by famous comedy writers Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones, stars world-famous actors including Hugh Grant and Lucy Liu. 

Its synopsis reads, "The documentary-style special mixes archival footage harvested from across the year with commentary from fictitious characters played by some of the world’s most beloved actors."

Although the characters may be fictional, the real-life stories they discuss aren't. After showing clips of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s interview with Oprah, the narrator referenced the late Duke of Edinburgh.

They said, “After the interview, Prince Philip withdraws from public life permanently, by dying." Adding, "Millions watched the funeral of his Royal Highness Prince Philip, the Duke Of Deadinburgh."

“Prince Phillip withdraws from public life permanently by dying” #DeathTo2021 was wrong for this one,"  tweeted one viewer. "The delivery was just dark #DeathTo2021," said another.

One viewer added, "Absolutely tasteless!"

However, some really enjoyed watching it and, despite the jokes being a bit close to the bone, are raving about it. "What a surprise #DeathTo2021 was! Turned it on by mistake, have a very good laugh! Although not sure how they got away with some of the commentary," tweeted one fan.

Another added, "Watched 'Death to 2021'. Quite good. (I do feel for satirists at the moment, with the world doing their job for them.)"

Aoife Hanna


Aoife is Junior News Editor at woman&home.

She's an Irish journalist and writer with over 1500 bylines and a background in creative writing, comedy and TV production.

Formerly Aoife was a contributing writer at Bustle and her words can be found in the Metro, Huffpost, Delicious, Imperica, EVOKE and her poetry features in the soon-to-be-published Queer Life, Queer Love anthology.

Outside of work you might bump into her at a garden center, charity shop, hot yoga studio, lifting heavy weights or (most likely) supping/eating some sort of delicious drink/meal.