Is that it? For months now much ink has been spilled about the "explosive" revelations promised in Harry and Meghan’s multi-million pound Netflix bonanza, a "tell-all" sensationalist documentary replete with truth bombs to tear the curtain back on the whole squalid royal cabal. And yet, having digested all three soporific hours of the first edition this morning, Cockburn was left rubbing his eyelids and wondering what all the fuss was really about.
Of course, there was innuendo aplenty; the ritual breast-beating and eyes watering. There was the full English of Hollywood tricks: dramatic music, sympathetic lighting,...
Is that it? For months now much ink has been spilled about the “explosive” revelations promised in Harry and Meghan’s multi-million pound Netflix bonanza, a “tell-all” sensationalist documentary replete with truth bombs to tear the curtain back on the whole squalid royal cabal. And yet, having digested all three soporific hours of the first edition this morning, Cockburn was left rubbing his eyelids and wondering what all the fuss was really about.
Of course, there was innuendo aplenty; the ritual breast-beating and eyes watering. There was the full English of Hollywood tricks: dramatic music, sympathetic lighting, dramatic cuts and a smorgasbord of stylistic shenanigans. But in terms of actual revelations, unknown stuff that a Windsor-weary public was yet to learn, there was precious little. Netflix must be left wondering what all those oodles of dollars went on, if not the full warts-and-all story of the Sussexes’ tale of woe.
Below are five of the worst “highlights” from Harry and Meghan’s blockbuster bore…
In March 2021, the couple told Oprah Winfrey that they had faced racism within the British royal family, with Harry noticeably declining the chance to name the senior royal who had allegedly questioned his son’s skin color. Here, eighteen months on, was a chance to actually name the supposed offender and detail such bigotry in detail.
Yet, once again, we were treated to insinuation without evidence. Harry told the cameras that his own family has “unconscious bias,” and is “part of the problem” when it comes to racism in Britain. But he ducked the chance to give any examples: instead it was left to academics Afua Hirsch and David Olusoga to claim that British tradition is “filled with racist imagery.”
Will the second part of the series go any further?
Di another day
The specter of Diana looms over this whole charade, with the viewer treated to multiple montages of the late Princess of Wales. At one point Cockburn wondered whether this series was really about Prince Harry or actually his (rather more interesting) mother.
Notably the Netflix series also chose to use footage of Diana’s Panorama interview, which Prince William has asked broadcasters to stop using. How must he feel now that Harry has used the footage in his new show?
Surely the endless shots of Diana weren’t merely a cynical attempt to conflate her press critics with the much more sympathetic treatment that H&M received thirty years later…
Social media shenanigans
How did Harry and Meghan meet? The dilettante Duke told the BBC in 2017 that it was on a blind date saying: “It was definitely a set-up — it was a blind date. It was a blind date for sure.”
Now it transpires, er, that wasn’t completely true. Instead Harry came across her on Instagram — and the love just bloomed from there…
Decline to comment?
Episode one begins with a pointed attack on Buckingham Palace, proclaiming proudly that: “Members of the royal family declined to comment on the content within this series.”
Yet already royal officials in London have disputed this, insisting that they were never asked to comment at all. A Buckingham Palace source has already rejected the Sussexes’ claims that the royals had refused to co-operate with their six-part series, according to the Mail Online.
“Recollections may vary,” as the Queen once (reportedly) said…
Megxit was about, er, Brexit
Probably the most amusing part of the series is the insinuation that somehow the vote to leave the EU in 2016 was linked to criticism of the couple. A grim-faced Harry says the series is not “just about our story,” adding: “This has always been much bigger than us.”
Academic David Olusoga then says, unchallenged, that the “fairy tale” of Harry and Meghan was “embedding itself in a nation that is having a pretty toxic debate about the European Union.” He continues that “immigration was at the absolute center” of that debate, and that “immigration is very often in this country a cipher for race,” followed by a series of clips of Brits making racist comments.
Talk about having a high opinion of themselves. Perhaps the real story is how much Netflix paid for all this…?
This article was originally published on The Spectator’s UK website.