The Moment Between Prince William And King Charles That Speaks Volumes About Their Bond

Highly traditional royal rituals like the coronation can come across as stiff and a bit cold, but adorable footage of Prince William and soon-to-be King Charles III during his coronation rehearsal paints a different picture of the monarchy altogether. The clip, which was taken from a BBC documentary titled "Charles III: The Coronation Year," shows that, monarchy or not, William and Charles have a pleasantly playful father-son relationship.

The behind-the-scenes clip showed William practicing pledging his allegiance to his father. Per tradition, William would recite the creed, "I, William, Prince of Wales, pledge my loyalty to you, and faith and truth I will bear unto you, as your liege man of life and limb. So help me God." Next, William was required to touch the crown and kiss his father — and King — on the cheek.

Yet, despite how somber his pledge to his father might sound at face value, the elder of Charles' two sons with the late Princess Diana found a moment to sneak in a bit of levity. In the clip posted to TikTok by @Princess_Jo, William playfully tickles his laughing father after miming touching the jewel-laden crown.

Prince William played off a minor flub in the rehearsal process with a joke

As Prince William and King Charles III rehearsed their coronation rituals in Westminster Abbey, the soon-to-be king and the surrounding team members laughed at William's playful antics. After touching the "crown" (as this was a rehearsal, Charles wasn't wearing a crown at the time), William leaned down to kiss his father's right cheek. His father quietly corrected him by pointing to his left cheek, which would be the side William needed to kiss at the coronation.

William then placed a second cheek on his father's left cheek before touching his face and teasingly saying, "Your left cheek is better." Afterward, William can be seen trying to fasten a pin onto Charles' robes. "It's quite a small catch," the prince said, frustrated at the finicky bauble. "On the day, it's not going to go in, is it?" His father laughed and agreed it likely wouldn't, commenting that William didn't have "sausage fingers like mine."

This wasn't the first time Charles had made a lighthearted joke at his own expense alongside his eldest son. At the 2006 Prince's Trust concert, Charles spoke to the crowd, expressing his wish to sing, too. After the crowd started encouraging Charles to sing, William could be seen smiling and shaking his head 'no' in the background. "I know my limitations," Charles said. "But at least I have my glow stick," via Business Insider.

King Charles' relationship with his two sons has had its ups and downs

Like any family, the dynamics between its members haven't always been giddy and playful. But as King Charles' younger son, Harry, Duke of Sussex, details in his memoir "Spare," Charles was a reasonably devoted father who lovingly called his sons "his darling boys." He would often joke with his children, breaking up the strict regimen of royal childhood, and he encouraged their love of the outdoors and being physically active. 

Harry also detailed the day King Charles was faced with the somber task of telling his two sons that their mother, Princess Diana, had died in a car crash in Paris. His memoir recounts Charles waking Harry up in the middle of the night, presumably after Charles had already informed his older brother William. Harry later talked about that tragic night in a BBC documentary titled "Diana, 7 Days," saying that Charles had an extraordinarily difficult job to do and that "he was there for us. He tried to do his best" (via Yahoo Entertainment). 

 William echoed similar sentiments of respect for his father's steadfastness and commitment while speaking at the 2023 coronation concert. "My father's first words on entering Westminster Abbey yesterday were a pledge of service. My father has always understood that people of all faiths, all backgrounds, and all communities, deserve to be celebrated and supported. Pa, we are all so proud of you," per ABC News.