While many fans praised the Duchess of Sussex for being “down to earth” and showing off her comedy chops, others felt her behavior on the daytime talk show wasn’t royal-esque and rather cringeworthy.
Anna Pasternak, a royal author who penned the book “The American Duchess: The Real Wallis Simpson,” told Fox News she believes Markle “embarrassed the royal family” and questioned why she keeps using her royal title despite stepping back from royal duties in 2020 along her with husband, Prince Harry.
“In Meghan Markle’s preeningly self-satisfied appearance on Ellen, she embarrassed the royal family and she embarrassed herself. She may have rejected the British monarchy yet still she seeks to capitalize on her title, being described on-screen as Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex. Presumably, this is to boost her popularity in North America,” Pasternak mused.
“She is often compared to the Duchess of Windsor, as an American divorcee marrying into the Royal Family, yet Wallis Simpson behaved with the utmost dignity throughout her exile from the British monarchy.”
“Meghan’s cringing appearance on ‘Ellen’ was the opposite of dignified. What purpose it served, I have absolutely no idea, other than to make her look even more fame-hungry than ever. She never did understand the difference between celebrity and royalty, as this jaw-droppingly awful, tasteless interview attests,” Pasternak concluded.
Meghan Markle during a taping of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” at the Warner Bros. lot in Burbank, California. (Michael Rozman/Warner Bros.)
During the prank skit, the duchess visited some vendors on the Warner Bros. lot, where “Ellen” is taped, and performed strange acts like doing a squat for no reason, touching a crystal to her head and chanting, drinking milk out of a baby bottle, eating like a chipmunk and singing a fake children’s song while wearing animal ears.
She was listening to DeGeneres through a hidden earpiece and had to do whatever the Emmy-winner told her to do. “When Meghan and I were talking about her doing the show, the first thing you said to me was, ‘I want to do one of those IFBs,” DeGeneres told the audience.
Markle spoke about her children’s book and paid family leave while on the daytime talk show. (Michael Rozman/Warner Bros.)
“I sent Meghan out to do some shopping. She wore an earpiece and had to say and do everything I told her to do,” she added.
The unsuspecting vendor owners were selling cookies, crystals and hot sauce. They were told by Markle’s fake assistant (planted by DeGeneres) to treat the duchess “normally,” so they didn’t question her odd behavior.
“Let Mommy taste some. My boo loves hot sauce,” Markle told one seller. “Mommy wants some heat.” After a few minutes, DeGeneres drove up on a golf cart and told the vendors it was a prank.
Howard Breuer, CEO of Newsroom PR, told Fox News he wasn’t surprised the former “Suits” actress was a guest on the talk show.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry stepped back from royal duties in 2020. (AP)
“It makes total sense for Meghan Markle to be on ‘Ellen,'” he said. “After all, she and Harry already broke the mold that dictated that members of the royal family avoid such shows and keep to themselves their thoughts, their struggles, and the comments that demonstrate that they are just people like everyone else… for her to do this kind of show at all is to color outside the lines.”
Markle also spoke to DeGeneres about using her voice and platform to fight for federal paid family leave in the U.S.
“I think that people truly forget, or don’t even know that in this country, it’s one of the only six countries in the entire world and the only wealthy nation in the entire world that does not mandate and have a federal paid leave program,” she explained.
“Everybody knows, especially if you have had a child and even if you haven’t, you know how hard it is and how critical it is in those first few weeks if not months to be together as a family,” she added.
“And the fact that we don’t offer that here is something that now as a mom of two, I will do everything that I can to make sure that we can implement that for people.” Markle shares two children with her husband: Archie, 2, and Lilibet, 5 months.
Tom Quinn, author of “Scandals of the Royal Palaces,” told Fox News Markle’s advocacy for “European-style financial aid for American mothers” might fall on deaf ears.
“Although it received a round of applause from the audience, Meghan’s support for the idea of more European-style financial aid for American mothers may be less well-received – inevitably, people will ask what an enormously privileged and wealthy mother could possibly know of such things,” he said. “The criticism will seem unfair to Meghan, but criticism always goes with being a member of the royal family. She will just have to learn to take it on the chin.”