Long before it actually aired, Meghan Markle’s interview with Oprah was expected to create some major turmoil within the British Royal Family.
But aside from the few insiders who knew exactly what Meghan was planning to reveal, we don’t think anyone expected this level of upheaval.
As you’ve no doubt heard by now, Meghan eviscerated the royals, accusing them of everything from blatant snobbery to appalling acts of racism.
What’s even more remarkable than the fact that this American former actress wields such power over a centuries-old institution is the fact that she created this mayhem simply by speaking her truth.
It clearly wasn’t Meghan’s intention to wreak such havoc — in fact, over the course of the interview, she repeatedly made excuses for the repugnant behavior of her tormentors — but in this case, the facts of the situation were more infuriating than any fiction.
So what happens now?
The royals have obviously faced PR troubles in the past, but this is a full-blown existential crisis that’s already resulted in numerous think-pieces on the subject of abolishing the British monarchy.
Institutions whose entire reason for being is the maintenance of customs that were established thousands of years ago tend to be very wary of change, especially when it happens abruptly.
But in this case, the royals may have no choice but to break with tradition.
The “never complain, never explain” mantra that’s guided the Windsors for generations simply won’t do in this case.
The situation demands a quick response and a promise of change — two things the Queen and company have historically avoided like the plague.
The crisis is made even messier by the fact that this is already a time of change within the Windsor clan.
Queen Elizabeth is 94 years old, and for obvious reasons, her reign will likely come to an end soon.
Prince Philip’s recent hospitalization served as a reminder that the second Elizabethan Age is not long for this world.
Sometime in the near future, Charles will take the throne — unless, of course, some sort of major scandal prevents him from doing so.
And now, it seems that Charles — probably with those circumstances in mind — is eager to issue a lengthy an apologetic response to the claims made in Meghan and Harry’s interview.
“Charles and the Queen had very different plans for how to respond,” an insider tells Us Weekly.
“Charles wanted to rebuke every claim made by Meghan and Harry and the Queen wanted to take a more modest approach.”
The source claims that Charles “especially wanted to make a statement against the allegation that someone in the royal family was worried about how dark Archie’s skin would be” but he was “overruled by other members of the family.”
Charles’ apparent eagerness to get in front of this scandal probably has something to do with the fact that he came off worse than any of his kin.
Hearts broke for Harry when the younger prince revealed that Charles “stopped taking [his] calls” at one point.
Father and son have since reopened the lines of communication, but the consensus remains that Charles’ decision to sever contact was unnecessarily cruel.
Of course, the allegation that made the most headlines was Meghan’s claim that a member of the royal family inquired about Archie’s skin tone and expressed concerns that Meghan and Harry’s son might be “too dark.”
The Sussexes didn’t name names, but by the process of elimination, it’s easy to determine that Charles is the one who made that revolting comment.
So it stands to reason that he would be the one most eager to clear the air and address the allegations.
However, it seems he’s meeting quite a but of resistance from the more conservative members of his family.
The Queen is reluctant to buck tradition in all circumstances, and in this case, she likely feels that her stance has been bolstered by the results of a surprising new survey:
On this side of the Atlantic, Meghan and Harry are more popular than ever, but it seems that in UK, their approval rating has undergone a precipitous drop.
A poll conducted by YouGov found that Harry’s popularity fell 15 points in the past week, with 48 percent of the 1,664 participants expressing a “negative attitude” toward Harry.
Only three out of 10 Brits reported a “positive view” of Markle following the interview, with an overwhelming 58 percent holding a “negative opinion.”
So from a PR standpoint, the Queen might be right — refusing to comment could be the best way to keep Britons in her corner.
From a moral standpoint, however, it’s obvious that the situation requires a response from the monarchy.
So will Charles seize the reigns of his own future and defy his mother in an effort to save his reputation?
Or will he continue to yield to the Queen’s authority?
Only time will tell.
But whatever the case, the real-life drama of the British Royal Family is suddenly far more dramatic than any storyline on The Crown.