The British tabloids spent the entire Labor Day weekend freaking out about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s Netflix deal. It’s pretty funny. It reminds me of something I’ve been saying for more than a year as well: there are actually some criticisms which could be made of the Sussexes about certain things, arguments to be made in good faith, which we could all take seriously and have a legitimate conversation about “is this a good idea” or “could they have done this better” or “perhaps this timing isn’t the best.” But any good faith is lost with these British commentators as they all immediately freak the f–k out and get absolutely hysterical whenever the Sussexes dare to breathe, exist or thrive. The Daily Mail did a summary of “what people are saying” about the Sussexes’ Netflix deal and it is hilariously stupid. Some highlights:
Angela Levin speaks! Royal biographer Angela Levin, who wrote Harry: Conversations with the Prince in 2018, said: ‘This is the biggest exploitation of the Royal Family that has been in our lifetime. I think this was plotted right from the beginning, before the wedding even. Meghan has used the Royal Family and Harry to go from being a C-lister to one of the most famous and richest women in the world.’
Royal commentator Duncan Larcombe speaks! Mr Larcombe, author of Prince Harry: The Inside Story, said: ‘There isn’t a soul on the planet that would think that they got that job with that many zeros in the salary for any other reason than their association with the British Royal Family. They wouldn’t have got a deal if it wasn’t for their position. They owe their success to the fact that they have been public property. Without Harry she was a pretty average actress on an American show that hardly anyone in Britain had heard of. Now she is enjoying a position higher than the Pope.’
The crux of all the arguments: Mr Larcombe added that the agreement with Netflix means that the couple might now never return to the UK or be part of the Royal Family again. He said: ‘The Netflix deal is by far and away the biggest development in Harry and Meghan breaking their ties with the British Royal Family. It is inconceivable that Meghan and Harry will come back to the UK and possibly make it impossible to ever return to the UK. The Palace have been sideswiped by this. Harry didn’t get on the phone to the Queen about the Netflix deal, it was news to her. That is an astonishing departure and shows that Harry is going to do what he wants on his terms.’
Angela Levin thinks Harry is secretly sad: Speaking about Harry’s recent zoom call with the Rugby Football League, Ms Levin added: ‘He looks terribly unhappy. Harry used to sparkle. He was so lively, he would make you feel energised, like as if you have taken an energy pill. There it’s all words, he deflects the question which means he doesn’t want to answer it.’
Larcombe accidentally revealed the motivation of so much of the press’s abuse: they wanted to (nonsensically) abuse and smear Harry & Meghan to the point where the Sussexes would HAVE to return. Like, the press thought they could somehow whine and cajole and abuse H&M until they simply had to come back to England. The current hissy fit is about the media’s realization that Harry and Meghan (especially Harry) are not coming back. That Harry and Meghan are planning for an extended future in America. As for the accusation of “exploitation” – I think it’s a difficult conversation to have, because it assumes that the British people feel like they “owned” Harry and Meghan and that Britain “made” H&M. That’s exploitative AF too, you know? And constantly painting Meghan as scheming… Jesus. Meghan didn’t want THIS. This was not her plan. Her plan was to become the next Diana. Meghan wanted to be a princess and to use a global platform to do good work WITHIN THE FAMILY. And then they were bullied out of the family and the country. Ugh.
Photos courtesy of WENN, Avalon Red, Backgrid.