This week the former royals, Harry and Meghan took to the small screen to sit down with interview icon, Oprah Winfrey to talk about their reasons for leaving the monarchy and taking shelter in the United States where we stopped bowing to kings in 1776.
This interview has come with a wave of controversy and the Conservative Critic will be taking those issues head on while asking our three key questions: “Is it entertaining?” “Does it have intellectual/artistic value?” “Is it liberal propaganda?”
Oprah with Meghan and Harry: A CBS Primetime Special
Overall rating: Rich people drivel
Despite my predisposition as an American to dislike classism and the English monarchy and my personal belief that the royals are very likely racist pedophiles, I found Meghan Markle’s narrative to be far too long, far too wrapped up in wealth and frankly quite lacking in humanity or truth.
Oprah Winfrey is a true pro up there with the likes of Barbra Walters and David Frost as one of the best interviewers in history and she does her job very well in this special. However, even her artful guided questions were not enough to guide the royal couple, particularly Meghan, into waters where she was even remotely believable let alone at all likeable.
At the end of the day, the viewer walks away knowing nothing new than they did before viewing the interview and it came off a real rich person whine fest for which nobody really has time to find much compassion.
Is it Entertaining?
At one hour and 25 minutes the interview is significantly too long and doesn’t cover enough ground to justify its length. The interview covered about four subjects about went over them repeatedly from every possible angle. To be fair to Oprah, she asked plenty of questions which could have lead Meghan or the couple into new areas of interest. But they stayed squarely on their four clearly quite studied subject areas which was not only a little boring but also was why a lot of it seemed fairly ingenuine.
Does it have intellectual/artistic value?
There is nothing terribly wrong with the interview which follows a familiar formula of having the shiny subject sitting in some shiny setting looking polished and relaxed while they are peppered with “hard hitting” questions. Oprah herself is engaging and trustworthy and as an interviewer carried more than her fair share of the weight.
The material of the interview is lacking. There is nothing newly discovered that a casual viewer hasn’t heard about from other media sources or quotes from the couple. A lot of the answers are extremely repetitive and a lot of the questions are just the same question but reframed. As the interview starts Oprah indicates that there was no question deemed “off-limits” but as their friend and neighbor, it seems like Oprah might have self-censored in some areas that were deserving of questioning. For example, there is no mention of the pedophilia charges which their familiy is facing in connection with Prince Andrew – a subject which almost certainly is more deserving of conversation than a fifteen minute segment on whether or not Duchess Kate cried because Meghan is so mean (Meghan denies). Additionally there is no question about Prince Harry’s relationship with his stepmother, Camilla who has been alleged to have played a central role in the downward spiral of his mother’s mental health. There are no questions about the health of Prince Phillip and none even about the other royal grandchildren. Clearly there was a list of questions that Oprah was not allowed to ask and she lied or the producers of this interview are really bad at choosing interview questions.
In terms of intellectual value, the interview leaves the viewer wondering – did I really need to spend over an hour learning about this? And the answer the interview gives is: no.
Is it Liberal Propaganda?
Rating: Definitely – the victim complex is real
One of the worst parts of the interview was how obviously the subjects, particularly Meghan Markle, try to manipulate the viewer. A clearly unskilled politician, Meghan makes the mistake of thinking hard working Americans will feel pity for the eyes-wide open-choices she made in entering into a relationship with the world’s most well known terrible in-laws. She delivers a lot of obvious half truths and partial stories hoping to create a narrative where the evil racist crown oppressed and belittled her into the ground until she was forced to run away the poor pitiful soul that she is.
She pretends regularly that she had no idea that there were strict rules and protocols the royal family all have to follow. As if we all in America have not followed the drama of the crown ever since Diana. As if this information was not readily Googleable. As if she was living under a rock her entire life and had never heard of all the theatrics of the royal family. The premise is absurd and she uses it as a tool to absolve her from her own choices including her choice to join that family. A choice which a million other women in the world with lives vastly different that Meghan’s would have gladly made.
Frankly, I have no doubt that the royals are insufferable pretentious racists and it would have been a lot easier to be on Meghan’s side had she been willing to tell the entire truth without trying to only present her specific narrative.
For example, a very large (way too large) portion of the interview hinges on a story the British press put out which claims that Meghan was a bridezilla who made Duchess Kate cry during Meghan’s wedding preparations because of some conflict over flower girl dresses. Planning a wedding is very stressful and I have personally seen women who I consider to be pillars of good character bring their families to tears over some petty detail of their wedding on multiple occasions. So had Meghan owned up to the conflict and taken even an ounce of responsibility I definitely would have forgiven her and believed a lot more of her other answers. Instead she claims it was all evil Kate and thankfully Kate was wise enough to bow at Meghan’s feet and apologize so she’s been forgiven. I obviously wasn’t there so I don’t know what is true, but interpersonal conflict is very rarely one-sided. This incredibly long repeated narrative that Kate was the one to make Meghan cry really shows the audience that Meghan is a narcissist incapable of personal responsibility. So everything else she says in the interview sees colored with that lens.
Meghan and Harry try to make the argument that their son, Archie, was being treated unfairly and they imply strongly this is all due to his being mixed race. At multiple points (so much repetition) the couple claim there were conversations about how “dark” Archie would be when he was born which the couple was uncomfortable with and rightly so. However they refuse to elaborate on the context of those conversations including who asked such an inappropriate question and what kind of malice that person had in asking it. Was it an insensitive joke or question about styling and family photos which should be reprimanded? Or was it more insidious? If the couple felt the need to bring it up, they should feel the need to expose the person who would carry those values in the monarchy.
Meghan primarily makes a lot of effort including an account of her fragile mental health to paint herself as quite the oppressed victim while she was living at the palace. And I think this is the part of the interview that is the truest of liberal narrative. While there is nothing to be dismissed about her suicidal thoughts, here in real life the suicide rate of teenagers has flown through the roof as Governments have actually oppressed their people and not allowed teenagers to go to school or leave their homes. People have real problems that are, I’m sorry, a lot worse than Granny Queen and the corporate monarchy being kind-of meanies. As Harry and Meghan lament that they didn’t have enough independent resources to hire their own personal security forcing them to stay at the home of their famous celebrity friend and sign a multimillion dollar deal with Netflix, the people watching at home are lamenting the closure of their business, the advancement of their cancer, the fear of COVID-19, the shutdown of their factory and the skyrocketing cost of living in their area.
Harry and Meghan’s lack of global viewpoint to understand they are absolutely not victims is quintessential liberalism and is truly nauseating.
The perfect cherry on top of the couple’s astounding lack of self-awareness is at the conclusion of the one hour and 25 minute ex-Royal whinefest, whilst sitting in a casual designer suit on a veranda that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to create in the most exclusive area of the entire nation, Harry says “Im not trying to complain.” Well you could have fooled us.