A Source For The Queen Called Harry And Meghan's Oprah Interview This One Word

Queen Elizabeth II isn't playing coy with how she feels about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's interview with Oprah Winfrey, which will air on CBS on March 7, 2021 at 8 p.m. EST. An unnamed source speaking for the queen called the focus on the conversation a "circus" with everything else that's going on in the world.

"What should Monday really be about? Children going back to school, the effectiveness of the vaccine program — these are the big issues the royal family wants to focus on, not news about the circus that is Oprah and all things Sussex," the source said to The Sunday Times.

The same source told The Times that the queen won't be watching the interview. So royal watchers hanging on to the belief that the royal might be hate-watching her grandson's interview might want to rethink that notion. "You will see next week Her Majesty has quite a few things going on. I don't think anyone should expect Her Majesty to stay up and watch the interview. She won't," the source claimed to the newspaper.

Of course, the queen does have plenty going on in her life — but her grandson is also giving a pretty highly anticipated tell-all interview. Still, the royal family appears to be doing damage control ahead of the CBS broadcast.

A royal adviser claimed Meghan Markle was bullying her staff

What's the best way to distract from bad press? Change the subject, of course! Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are expected to share some not-so-favorable comments about the royal family with Oprah Winfrey. So the timing of a palace insider claiming Meghan was a bully to her staff is raising eyebrows.

On March 2, 2021 — just five days before Meghan and Harry's Oprah interview — royal aides shared with The Sunday Times that former communications secretary Jason Knauf had sent an email to Prince William's staff in 2018, claiming that Meghan "was able to bully two PAs out of the household in the past year." Knauf also wrote that "the Duchess seems intent on always having someone in her sights," per the Times.

However, Meghan's rep accused palace insiders of a "calculated smear campaign" after the bullying claims were made public. "The Duchess is saddened by this latest attack on her character, particularly as someone who has been the target of bullying herself and is deeply committed to supporting those who have experienced pain and trauma," Meghan's rep said in a statement provided to multiple outlets, including The Times.

And if that weren't contentious enough, Buckingham Palace responded to the bullying claims. "We are clearly very concerned about allegations in The Times following claims made by former staff of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex," the palace said in a statement, per the Daily Mail. Not exactly a ringing message of support for the former royals.

Meghan and Harry leaving the royal family caused an unprecedented stir

It might seem extreme for the queen's sources to call the attention surrounding Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's interview with Oprah Winfrey a "circus." But the couple's decision to step back from the royal family in January 2020 really was unprecedented. So it's only natural that palace insiders seem to be doing "damage control" ahead of the tell-all interview. As the thinking goes, things must have been pretty bad for Harry to want to give up his royal duties.

Plus, there have been reports that Queen Elizabeth II and Prince William are, unsurprisingly, "furious" about Meghan and Harry's Oprah interview. "They feel that by sharing [Harry and Meghan's] side of the story, the entire royal family will be painted in an unfair way," an unnamed insider said to Us Weekly.

But after years of being maligned in the British press, it's to be expected that Meghan and Harry want to share their side of the situation, too. The interview probably won't make the queen happy, but the couple is doing what they think is best for them.