It was always going to be a monumental hurdle - regaining faith in his public after being at the epicentre of a royal marital affair and blamed for the demise of Diana, The People's Princess.
So loathed was Prince Charles that for a long time the most popular idea for a new leader once the Queen went was to skip the crown over the prince's head completely and affix it instead on his son, William's.
But in an article for the Sydney Morning Herald, Bevan Shields outlines how "time and shrewd moves" have helped the heir to the throne "rehabilitate his image" and find favour renewed among the British public.
Shield says despite a dogged group of haters, the prince has managed to emerge as a "credible replacement" who's "rehabilitated image" has enticed the people of England to regard Charles in a new light. And, notes Shield, with perhaps more sympathy too.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the prince's biographer, Penny Junor, says: "He has weathered the storm of his broken marriage and the years of scandal and absolutely left that behind. He's proved himself again and again what a thoroughly decent man he is.
"Perhaps because he's now over 70 and being seen as a rather grandfatherly figure, people are viewing him in a much gentler way than they were 20 years ago. I really do believe he will be a very, very good king and I just hope he gets some time to demonstrate that."
It seems the coronavirus pandemic has been the perfect time for the 71-year-old to put his best foot forward too, to the extent that Shield describes Charles as having "a good crisis".
Firstly, he contracted but went on to beat the disease and, once well again, addressed the public in a series of sincere video messages and charity activations.
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Junor has also said of Charles contracting the virus: "In a way, it helped that Charles caught the virus himself, because he has been able to speak from a position of real knowledge and show that he is human and he suffers a lot of the problems we all suffer from," Junor says. "He sort of normalised himself in a way that is sometimes difficult for other figures in senior positions."
Dickie Arbiter, a former Buckingham Palace press secretary, says Charles has been savvy in his ability to adapt to using social media and, most recently, Zoom.
But even before coronavirus struck, measures were being taken to overhaul the prince's image. And key to that was the public opinion of Camilla. Once the most hated woman in England, she is now largely considered a dedicated senior royal and doting step-grandmother to William and Harry's children.
The Sydney Morning Herald cites poll results from YouGov which show Camilla is now deemed "genuine", "loyal", "good-humoured" and "down to earth". However, figures from January YouGov poll showed only 16 per cent of respondents believe she should be bestowed the title of Queen when Charles becomes King.
Meanwhile, other polls have put Charles in seventh place when it comes to popular royals.
The wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle also made for an opportunity for Charles to garner some unexpected kudos. When Markle's father was unable to walk his daughter down the aisle, it was Charles who stepped in.
Among his work, royal commentators also point to the prince's stance on climate change and sustainability: seen in the 1980s and 90s as a bit hippy, it appears the prince was in fact ahead of the game on this: "Everybody just mocked him and wrote him off as a lunatic in the '80s and '90s, but on these issues he was actually a visionary."
And while he awaits his ascension to the throne, unlike his mother who took on the crown at just 25, Charles has had decades to learn and establish himself. As Junor notes: "He will be the best-prepared monarch this country has ever had."