In the second episode of The Royal View: Blood On Their Hands, guests look at the feud between the press and the Royals, and debate whether the paparazzi are too invasive in their pursuit of Royals, or if the fact they’re in the public eye makes them fair game.
In a particularly heated episode, we picked five of our favourite moments as the guests clash over everything from whether Diana was a victim or manipulator of the press to how Meghan has been treated by the papers. Enjoy the highlights below… and then make sure you watch the full episode on True Royalty TV.
Meghan: the modern princess
Did Meghan’s arrival at the Palace attract controversy? Kelvin MacKenzie noted that the general public appeared to accept her because she was leading the way forward as a modern princess, standing out significantly from the rest of the Royal Family. However, Diana’s biographer and confidant Andrew Morton drew attention to cohort of alt righters who troll Instagram with racist remarks aimed at Meghan, which the Palace is desperately trying to stop.
Press vs Royal Family
While the battle between the press and the Royal Family has raged on for decades, ex-tabloid editor Kelvin MacKenzie argued that the public have now taken the Royals’ side. While this may not have always been the case, he cites the paparazzi’s constant pursuit of Diana and the younger Royals as media mistakes that turned the public against the press.
Who broke the marriage vows first?
Over 20 years after Charles and Diana divorced, there is still debate around who broke their marriage vows first. Lady Colin Campbell claimed adamantly that ‘Diana stepped out first’, referring to her affair with Major James Hewitt. Andrew Morton, however, countered that this accusation is ‘semi-irrelevant’, given that ‘only they knew what really happened’. Nevertheless, the guests agreed that the first five years of Diana and Charles’ marriage was happy and free of affairs.
Diana: victim or perpetrator?
Royal biographer Lady Colin Campbell has a less sympathetic view of the Royal Family’s treatment at the hands of the press, describing how Diana allegedly used to ring up the press to give them stories. “You can’t be both the victim and the perpetrator,” says Lady Campbell, noting the irony in the tragedy of Diana being overwhelmed by the press who she initially relied on to circulate her stories.
Meghan: victim of smears and racial undertones
The guests discussed Prince Harry’s public accusation that the press printed ‘smears and racial undertones’ about Meghan in their papers. Lady Colin Campbell, who was born and raised in Jamaica, said that she saw nothing racist about Meghan’s treatment by the press, going so far as to claim ‘she’s had a great ride because she has black blood.’ Royal historian Tessa Dunlop was shocked by Lady Campbell’s rhetoric, however, firmly stating that it made her feel uncomfortable. Harry’s statement to the press was completely justified, Dunlop argued, saying ‘he was well within his rights to call it out’.
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