It’s kind of inevitable with these big royal feeding frenzies that I get a little burnt out on all of the shifting storylines, contradictions, hearsay and stupidity. I can’t even keep up with all of the insanity coming out of the House of Windsor and their loyal band of media sycophants. There have been American takedowns of the asinine sh-t that’s happened around the Duke and Duchess of Sussex before, by legit media outlets. I hoped that the NY Times would continue to press the issue, but instead, the Times has a piece up about the Sussexes’ Oprah interview, and it’s full of quotes from British royal commentators. Maybe there’s something else at play here – maybe the Times is actually exposing those commentators? But it doesn’t read that way. Some highlights from “A New Pregnancy and an Oprah Interview Refocus a Spotlight on Harry and Meghan.” Sub-headline: “Buckingham Palace is steeling itself for embarrassing revelations, and there’s griping afoot in the British press.”
The Queen’s move to strip the Sussexes of their patronages: “Anyone with any sense knew this was inevitable,” said Valentine Low, royal correspondent of the Times of London. “They’ve done these commercial deals with Netflix and Spotify. But this confirms the permanence of the split.”
Palace reaction to the interview: Palace officials are steeling themselves for embarrassing disclosures about how Meghan, a 39-year-old American former actress, felt isolated and unwelcome after her fairy-tale wedding to Harry at Windsor Castle in 2018.
The asinine comparison between Prince Andrew & the Sussexes: Ms. Winfrey is friendly with Harry and Meghan, so her questions are unlikely to be as probing as those posed to Andrew by the BBC journalist, Emily Maitlis. Still, their choice of arguably the most famous American celebrity interviewer for their big post-royal reveal has set teeth on edge in London’s media establishment. It also didn’t help that CBS announced the interview only days after the duchess won a legal victory in a privacy case against the Mail on Sunday. A High Court judge ruled that the tabloid had illegally published a letter that Meghan sent to her estranged father, Thomas Markle. The decision was a victory over those who “create their business model to profit from people’s pain,” she said in a statement.
The British media hates the Sussexes: “They don’t have a huge reservoir of affection among the tabloids because they essentially declared war on them,” said Mr. Low of The Times. “There’s also a generational thing that goes on.” Younger people, who get their news from social media, tend to be more enthusiastic about the couple than the older people who read the tabloids, he said. For many, Meghan’s biracial background and acting career breathed fresh air into a musty institution. But to some older, more traditional Britons, the couple’s abrupt departure for California was a repudiation of the queen herself.
How dare the Sussexes want to engage with the media on their own terms! The British media was genuinely excited about Meghan’s pregnancy, particularly given that she had suffered a painful miscarriage last July, an experience she wrote about in stark terms in The New York Times last November. But the slick way this happier news was announced played into criticisms that the couple abhor intrusive press coverage, unless it is on their own terms.
Again with the “privacy” crap: “They left Britain ostensibly to get away from the relentless publicity,” said Penny Junor, a royal biographer. “They couldn’t stand the lack of the privacy; yet at every turn, they seem to have sought publicity for themselves.”
The British media is still hoping that the Sussexes come back? “If they came back and did lovely shots for the press with their babies, I think the press could be very favorable,” Ms. Junor said. “Fundamentally, he was very much loved. But there are lot of people who think she led him astray.”
“They don’t have a huge reservoir of affection among the tabloids because they essentially declared war on them” – excuse me? Meghan and Harry were slandered relentlessly for a full year before they filed their lawsuits. During that year, the British media was actively trying to harass Meghan into miscarrying. The UK press was BEYOND vile to the Sussexes. “They left Britain ostensibly to get away from the relentless publicity…They couldn’t stand the lack of the privacy; yet at every turn, they seem to have sought publicity for themselves.” They left Britain because they were being harassed, abused, slandered, and vilified at every turn, and now they’re… telling their own stories, in their own voices, after facing a barrage of bullsh-t. But the last Penny Junor quote is very telling, isn’t it? Come back, show us the children, give us free photos, show us that we own you, help us profit from you.
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.