As of this writing, no deal has been reached for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. The Queen reportedly wants to make everything happen quickly, so I would think that we’ll have some kind of significant announcement Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday at the latest. I do not believe that they will have a comprehensive plan by then, but it will be important that they have *something* big to announce as soon as possible. So let’s do some housekeeping of all of the stories going around. Note: I’m ignoring some of the dumbf–k stories because life’s too short to talk about how Meghan and Harry could do a “reality show.”
Tom Bradby said on Thursday that the Sussexes felt like everything had been snowballing since the wedding, and “it’s gone a bit too far. And certainly the rest of the family find Harry and Meghan very difficult and, from Harry and Meghan’s point of view, they’re just being driven out as they see it. And it’s sad.” So, “difficult” or “driven out”? I think the answer here can be a little bit of both, to be fair – there have been certain moments where I just shake my head and I’m like “well, Harry and Meg aren’t making it easy on themselves.” But those moments are nothing compared to the actual racist sh-t and unending vitriol from ALL sides, so yes, of course they feel like they’ve been “driven out.” One “palace aide” ran to the Times to clapback on the “driven out” feeling though, saying: “I don’t think you could point to any evidence of them being forced out, or made to feel unwelcome. The future of the monarchy always had the Sussexes very much at the heart of it, and perhaps still will depending on what structures they arrive at.” Really, palace aide? NO evidence? None at all?
Meanwhile, it’s not established that Harry did stay behind in England while Meghan flew back to Vancouver Island. I kind of love that message from Meg: she came back to England for a few days to check in on her favorite charities and do the “thank you” at Canada House and then she and Harry dropped the bomb and she was OUT. Later, colonizers. Harry is reportedly going to do face-to-face meetings with the Queen, Prince Charles, maybe even William, but as of Saturday he had not seen them yet. Which I respect too, the fact that Harry is willing to go face-to-face with these people who sold him out and sold out his wife and child. The Daily Mail said on Saturday that the Queen wants this settled in the next 72 hours, which would mean…what? By Monday or Tuesday? 72 hours business-days or what?
And finally, one of the most even-handed pieces I’ve read about the state of things at the moment – this Elle Magazine article, also from Saturday. Some highlights:
What’s been happening at the emergency meetings: “Following a series of meetings and consultations across the last few days, there are a range of possibilities for the family to review which take into account the thinking of the Sussexes outlined earlier in the week,” a palace source told ELLE. A palace source says, “making a change to the working life and role in the monarchy for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex requires complex and thoughtful discussion. The request for this to be resolved at pace is still Her Majesty’s wish. The aim remains days, not weeks. There is a genuine agreement and understanding that any decisions will take time to be implemented.”
There is no “punishment”: ELLE also understands that “no one wants to be vindictive or punish Harry” despite reports to the contrary in the press. Harry is “loved by his family.” While the situation is “complex,” they want to find a compromise and give him the support he needs.
Wise William is peacemaker? The mood is “let’s just get something fixed. Let’s get a structure and a plan and move on. The drama and division is doing the most damage,” according to a source close to Prince William.
The Sussexes were mad about the photos on the Queen’s desk for her Christmas message? A source close to the family conceded that while the optics of the Christmas message could come down to an error made by the production team preparing the set for the Queen’s message, “the Prince of Wales’ vision of a slimmed-down monarchy had always included both his sons.”
This reminds me a bit of the immediate “fallout” from Harry and Meghan’s emotional interviews on their ITV documentary. The first story was that William was “furious” that his brother… was emotional about feeling traumatized by all of the sh-t that went down. Then it changed to “William is worried” and “William thinks the Sussexes are in a fragile place.” So it is here – first William was “incandescent with rage,” then he was gaslighting Harry via Will’s go-to Daily Mail guy and now Will The Wise just wants to fix this. Just goes to show you that William’s first instincts are as sh-tty as the Queen’s.
Photos courtesy of WENN, Avalon Red.