This past Sunday, Oprah Winfrey and CBS released one of the most anticipated interviews of the year covering Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s decision to leave the Royal Family. The interview was a bombshell, with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle exposing the dark side of the Royal Family and their treatment of Meghan and her child Archie. Below we explore where this interview ranked against all other programs in 2021, what the viewers thought, and what other drivers contributed to the conversation who you maybe didn’t expect.
- Oprah’s interview with Prince Harry and Megan Markle was able to rank among the top airings of the year, driving extremely high levels of commentary and ranking as the 6th most engaged program of the year
- What’s clear from commentary around the interview is that viewers are overwhelmingly supportive of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s decision to leave the Royal Family, citing a lack of security for Harry and Meghan’s child, issues with the Royal Family’s treatment of Meghan Markle, and references to the struggles Princess Diana faced with the Royal Family
- Tyler Perry and John Oliver also appeared as drivers of Emotional Reaction during the airing; Perry for providing housing and security to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, and John Oliver for predicting there may be trouble for the new family when they first tied the knot
Oprah’s interview with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle stands as one of the biggest TV events of 2021
Oprah’s interview with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle has pushed back against the trend of a shift to on-demand, and proven that live (non-sports) TV events can still generate massive levels of conversation. Compared to all other airings in 2021, the interview is currently the 6th most emotionally reacted to airing on Twitter, one of only 3 non-sports events that has broken the top 10 airings of the year.
- Oprah’s interview with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle earned a total of 530,666 tweets within the airings window (+ / – 3 hours), ranking 4th this year in total commentary within a single airing behind 2 postseason NFL games and MTV Unplugged
- The interview was able to generate 134,472 Emotional Reactions for a Reaction Rate of 25%, ranking 6th overall when compared to all other airings so far in 2021
- Reaction Rate increased in the 2021 Super Bowl by 4%, with a 36% Reaction Rate this year
As expected, specific Emotional Reactions were extremely split for the airing itself, with top Emotions Inclusive of love (18% of all Emotional Reactions), enjoy (12% of all Emotional Reactions), hate (11% of all Emotional Reactions), crazy (10% of all Emotional Reactions), and happy (6% of all Emotional Reactions).
- Love: “All I have to say is that interview was one of the best television programs I’ve seen in years. I had chills the entire 2 hours. Meghan is the epitome of resilience, Harry is the husband and father every man should strive to be, and Oprah is truly a master of her craft.”
- Enjoy: “So freaking proud of Harry! He knew way too well where this was headed if they stayed and he chose Meghan. #MeghanandHarryonOprah #HarryandMeghanonOprah #HarryandMeghan”
- Hate: “As someone who watches @TheCrownNetflix I feel particularly comfortable saying most members of the royal family are trash. Oh, and I miss @Oprah on network television”
- Crazy: “Tyler Perry is the real legend in this story, just hooking Harry and Meghan up with the house and security. What a guy. That said, this interview has been crazy. Bombs away.”
- Happy: “i cannot express how happy i am that harry and meghan left. them and their children deserve all the happiness in the world #HarryandMeghanonOprah”
Viewers Are Overwhelmingly Supportive of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Following the Interview
What is overwhelmingly clear through the commentary of the event, those who watched the interview sided heavily with Prince Harry and Megan Markle. Key points that are mentioned throughout the interview include security around Harry and Meghan’s Son, the Royal Family’s treatment of Harry and Meghan (7% of all Tweets), fans supporting Harry and Meghan raising Archie outside of the royal family (6% of all Tweets), and Princess Diana (5% of all Tweets).
- Security: “So the Queen said in her official statement that Meghan and Harry were still part of her family, but the Queen’s institution denied the Queen’s grandson security? Okay. #HarryandMeghanonOprah”
- The Royal Family: “The uk tabloids are literally the devil’s playground. The fact that Meghan and Harry had to go through this without any support from the royal family shocks me. #OprahMeghanHarry”
- Archie: “They didn’t want Archie to be called a prince. They were afraid of how dark his skin would be. They didn’t want to provide him with any security. WOW!!!!!! #HarryandMeghanonOprah”
- Princess Diana: “Wow. Meghan and Harry would not have been able to leave financially had it not been for the money Diana left him. “I think she saw this coming.” Just wow. #MeghanandHarryonOprah”
The Unsung Heroes of the Night: Tyler Perry and John Oliver
Two unsuspecting names popped up as impactful drivers of Emotional Reactions the night of the interview. It was revealed that Tyler Perry has been supporting Prince Harry and Meghan both through providing housing and security after they left the Royal Family. Many are also pointing towards John Oliver’s comments from 2018 on the Royal Family, indicating that their checkered past may be a problem for Meghan Markle as she was initially joining the family.
Tyler Perry Verbatims:
- “I love how American black celebs rallied around Meghan and Harry like a community. Thanks Tyler Perry, Jay and Beyonce, Oprah and Gayle and all those who said “we got you.”
- “Wow…. so let me get this straight, Tyler Perry gives a “Prince” security that the royal family wouldn’t? #OprahMeghanHarry”
- “Yes, awesome @tylerperry offering his home and security #HarryandMeghanonOprah thank you for keeping all safe and a chance to breathe. @Oprah @CBS”
John Oliver Verbatims:
- “John Oliver nailed it, really. #OprahMeghanHarry”
- “I’m not watching this Oprah thing, and I’ve never really given a single F about the British royals but I AM! Kinda looking forward to John Oliver’s reaction”
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