Countess Sophie finally apologized to the man she offended at the Royal Variety

One of the funniest stories towards the end of 2022 was about the Earl and Countess of Wessex’s attendance at the Royal Variety show. The Royal Variety is a fundraiser for down-on-their-luck performers and entertainers, and many celebrities donate their time to put on a televised show. Every year, various royals are assigned to sit in the Royal Box and simply be entertained, and then greet some of the performers backstage. It’s not rocket science, and given that the Windsors are in public-facing jobs, you would think that they would know how to make small talk and simply be friendly. Not so much. One of the entertainers, Frank Skinner, spoke out after the Royal Variety, saying that Sophie Wessex insulted him and was incredibly unpleasant after the show. He was really hurt by her rude behavior and he said so. Well, the Wessexes never responded publicly, but it turns out that Sophie did send him a note of apology. More than six weeks later.

Sophie Wessex sent a heartfelt and handwritten apology to Frank Skinner following their meeting at the Royal Variety Performance in December. Frank previously revealed that the Countess of Wessex had made some critical comments after watching him perform Three Lions with David Baddiel and The Lightning Seeds during the show – and told him not to “give up the day job”.

According to The Times, he told Absolute Radio: “It’s supposed to be just banal compliments. I said, ‘Was it that bad?’ And she said, ‘Well, you know, I could tell, you know, it’s not what you do.”’ The comedian said he explained to the Countess that he and David were comics, to which she suggested that the pair were “not used to live audiences” and were more perhaps more comfortable on screen. He then pointed out that he had played at the London Palladium just a few days earlier.

However, Frank has now confirmed on his radio show that he has since received a personal apology from Sophie, which he described as a “lovely” gesture.

He told listeners: “I got a very lovely note this week – unexpected – from someone I’ve talked about on the radio show. And you know when the word classy springs to mind… I was quite moved by it. It was the most beautiful thing – handwritten and lovely. I was very pleased.”

[From Hello]

It’s the lag time which I find offensive. I mean, I’ve f–ked up, I’ve been rude to people, I’ve hurt people’s feelings. The key is to apologize quickly, like within the same conversation or within a day. Sophie was an a–hole to Frank Skinner in December and she only sent him a note this week? Yikes. It was the same with Ngozi Fulani too, only that situation was so much worse – they left Fulani out in the cold for seventeen days after she reported her treatment by Susan Hussey. These people are supposed to be the most elite “public servants” ever, all of them are supposed to know how to behave in their public-facing jobs. And they can’t even apologize for their own rude, racist or unpleasant behavior in a timely manner.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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32 Responses to “Countess Sophie finally apologized to the man she offended at the Royal Variety”

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  1. CourtneyB says:

    He added he loves her now so I guess he’s fine with the timing. 🤷‍♀️

    • Sam says:

      What was offered to him to say something like that..

      • Sue E Generis says:

        So many Brits have been brainwashed to venerate the RF. They automatically become simpering and grateful with any positive attention – a note, an OBE. They’re like Manuchurian candidates – mention honors or attention from the monarchy and they fall in line.

      • Lorelei says:

        Yeah, I’m sure he felt like he had to say something like that. Something about the royals causes so many otherwise sane adults to leave their dignity at the door. Sophie has become so obnoxious. Or, more likely, she was always this obnoxious but didn’t used to be this obvious about it.

        I do still think it’s hilarious that she chose to wear to this event a dress that Kate wore a few years earlier and looked so much better in. (I know that Kate has…issues, and that no one should be striving for her level of thinness. But I also wouldn’t be going out of my way to be featured side-by-side with Kate in a “Who Wore it Better”)

  2. SomeChick says:

    I remember her terrible comments. I guess it takes them a while to realize they’ve made a misstep, determine if anyone has noticed, and then decide what to do about it.

    I like Sophie’s nightie. It looks comfy.

  3. Brassy Rebel says:

    None of them are good at being spoiled, entitled snobs because they don’t seem to understand the assignment. In this situation, empty small talk was called for, not theater criticism.

    The apology should have come well within a week of the offense. I guess she’s just so busy doing nothing.

  4. Noki says:

    Lol i just had to laugh, do you know how rude and mean it is to tell someone ‘don’t give up the day job’when that’s their actual job. 😂🤣

  5. ThatsNotOkay says:

    Edward looks like Aeon the buzzard from Rudolph’s Shiny New Year in that photo.

    Anyway, these people are the worst at their jobs and need to be sacked. The entire Royal Family is no better than Instagram influencers, in that their entire existence revolves around taking photos of themselves and getting publicity for…themselves while perhaps hawking a product or campaign in the process, but the end goal is always “more limelight and followers for me.” I’d say they’re the founders of the influencer set, but they’re also the worst at it. The absolute worst and incapable of adapting with the times.

  6. C-Shell says:

    “And you know when the word classy springs to mind…”

    Not so much. “And you know when the trashy springs to mind…” There. Fixed.

    I used to think that Sophie and Edward were bland and inoffensive, but then they got elevated to “senior working royals” and their true character and offensive personalities became painfully apparent. “Oprah who HAHAHAHAHA.”

  7. WhatKateHerselfSaidOnPageSix says:

    I didnt know the royal family do apologies, why is it not so easy to apologize to Meghan

  8. Noor says:

    This must have been an “off day” for Sophie who normally tries to toe the line. Didn’t Princess Diana dubbed Sophie as a Miss goody two shoes.

    Remember how she used to irritate Princess Diana by copying her dressing and hairstyle .. Now she patterns herself on Kate’s long hair and up her wardrobe to be more like Kate and lately, like Meghan

    • Amy Bee says:

      Sophie was caught on tape bad mouthing the Queen and Queen mother and she was also photographed on camera being rude to her RPO. She’s not as nice as people believe her to be. I guess you have to be mean to survive in that family.

  9. Thelma says:

    The original set of comments Sophie made showed her TRUE nature. The lag in apology suggests that she was being told to apologize after it all because public and she was resisting. Can’t stand her anymore. Another MEAN GIRL.

  10. Hail says:

    Wonder if William stomped up to her, pointed his finger in her face and told her that her behavior isn’t “what’s done here in Britain”. Did Kate tell her that she wasn’t close enough to the performers to make those comments?

  11. Jais says:

    Was it just Sophie that said something rude though? I think Edward said something as well. So did she apologize for both of them then? Or there was no apology from Edward? Maybe I’m not remembering correctly but I swear they both said something rude. Well, she was rude and she apologized. If he hadn’t publicly outed the rudeness though, would there have ever been an apology? How many times are royals rude as hell and people just smile and don’t say a word?

  12. Becks1 says:

    I mean, I guess better late than never. I find the delay interesting though, because the story had kind of fallen off the radar. Like Sophie could have kept on ignoring it and I think it would have just been swept under the rug. Wonder if something else came up about it?

  13. girl_ninja says:

    How kind and generous of Sophie to take the time. Both the Earl and Countess of Wessex have proven to be complete bums. The way Ed put his hands on a tube employee who who was asked to explain some of the operations to QEll. The employee was of course a black man. Why wouldn’t a white man just assume he can man handle a black man? And of course the way Sophie tries to snub Meghan any chance she gets. I can’t stand either of those gremlins.

  14. Laura D says:

    Two wrongs don’t make a right but, it took Baddiel and Skinner over a decade to recognise the harmful racist bullying towards the black footballer Jason Lee. As far as I know I don’t think they actually sent a personal apology to Jason. In the grand scheme of things I think Sophie taking a few months to apologise for offending Skinner isn’t too bad.

  15. Kara says:

    I’ll play the devil’s advocate on this one. I think it’s a positive thing that she DID apologize, even if it was two months late.

    If I were in her position and hadn’t apologized immediately after the initial hubbub, for whatever reason–even if I’d been locked in a dungeon for two months!–there’s a strong chance I’d have been too scared to apologize this late. There’s a good chance that the person who you insulted will reject it for being so late, and you know that others will call you out for your bad manners, as has happened here. If you have any sort of high-profile position, it’s a better bet to let it drop so that it won’t be brought up in the press again.

    What’s most interesting about her sending a note of apology is that it’s a mark of her plebeian background. Writing apology notes is one of those rules of etiquette only taught to English commoners and those foolish, sentimental Americans.

    When have you heard about a royal apologizing about anything, especially to someone supposedly “beneath their station”? They’ll express “sadness” that their marriages mysteriously imploded or that the Atlantic slave trade just…happened, but they don’t apologize.

    (Note: I’m no fan of Sophie’s. She’s shown her true colors, numerous times, most often in a friggin’ church.)

    • Annalise/Typical Virgo says:

      I think you’re right that there is no prescedent for royals ever publicly apologizing, regardless of how much they were at fault.
      One thing that always amazes me regarding etiquette/royal etiquette, is that SO much of royal etiquette seems to be nothing more than a stubborn refusal to do ANYTHING that “commoners” do, even if it makes more sense or looks/sounds better! Royals must ALWAYS do the opposite of even the most sensible commoner! I once saw an article detailing what posh people say in certain situations vs commoners. It stated that if a commoner is talking to a posh person,and can’t hear the posh person, a commoner will say “Pardon?” And a posh person talking to a commoner who can’t hear him/her, will say “What???” To me, this sounds like newly “elevated” people DESPERATE to differentiate themselves from their “common” roots, by doing EVERYTHING different, even if it means reinventing a practical, functional wheel. “What?????”

  16. Lorelei says:

    No rush, Sophie 🙄

  17. Julia K says:

    Back in the day , I was at many “You will wish to attend” receptions and heard people, out of anxiety maybe, try to say some ” cutesy ” comments that landed completely wrong. ” Keep your day job” etc then try to talk themselves out of the hole. People groaned with embarrassment but this stuff happens. I’m not a Sophie fan but I can see this happening. People are human and make mistakes, but this apology was way late and not classy.

  18. Purley Pot says:

    Edward doesn’t look well in these photos. Hope it’s just poor photos.

    • QuiteContrary says:

      I think Edward probably was straining over what he sees as the injustice of not being allowed to be on stage himself.

      He fancied himself a theater professional. In truth, he was making cups of tea at Andrew Lloyd Webber’s theater company. He was a lousy actor, by all accounts, and his TV production company was a failure.
      Then there was his production of the embarrassing “It’s a Royal Knockout,” which is remembered as a disaster. If you want to experience secondhand embarrassment, you can watch it on YouTube.

  19. Amy Bee says:

    Brits seem to be easily swayed by gestures by the Royal Family. But I’m glad Sophie was exposed as an amateur unprofessional and rude. If the story is true that Meghan declined help/advice from Sophie you can’t really blame her. She was probably rude to Meghan and it’s interesting that she didn’t even get a mention in Harry’s book.

  20. Nadia says:

    Both Sophie and Edward seem to put their feet in their mouths often thinking they are funny when they are not.

  21. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I’m always sorry. I think I live in an apologetic state lol. I should just wear a t-shirt that says, “I’m so sorry!”