OPINION | Meghan Markle’s The Ellen Show stint is another attempt to convince us she’s not like her in laws – and we might be buying it

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Meghan Markle attends the 2021 Salute To Freedom Gala at Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum in New York. (PHOTO: Getty Images)
Meghan Markle attends the 2021 Salute To Freedom Gala at Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum in New York. (PHOTO: Getty Images)

I was mindlessly scrolling through Instagram when a video of Meghan Markle chatting to talk show host Ellen DeGeneres caught my attention.

“Really. . . another interview? And on daytime television of all places?” I thought.

So much for leaving the Royal Family to lead a lowkey lifestyle. If anything, it seems the Sussexes have gone out of their way to ensure the world sits up and listens whenever they have had something to say.

But whether you’ll admit it or not – the couple have a captivating star power and any glimpse they offer into their life we lap up eagerly.

So of course I watched every clip of Meghan’s appearance on The Ellen Show I could find (the episode is yet to air in South Africa).

It’s a far cry from her tell-all sit down with Oprah Winfrey earlier this year.

Meghan seems laidback and gleeful.

This conversation is easier to digest than the weighty topics she delved into with Oprah and this time the anecdotes she shares make her seem approachable because they are so relatable.

If Meghan is trying to sell us the idea that she’s just like any other devoted wife and mother, it’s a pitch we’re buying into. 

“I love to cook,” she tells Ellen of her and Harry’s Thanksgiving plans.

“We'll be home and just sort of relax and settle in. It's our second Thanksgiving at home in California, so it will be nice.”

She shares of how two-year-old Archie loves being a big brother to Lilibet (five months) and admits that having a second child changed the game for her and H, as she calls her husband.

“When you have one kid it's a hobby and two children is parenting,” she tells Ellen.

If her narratives of normalcy aren’t enough, she offers us humorous stories of self-deprecation (because the ability to laugh at oneself is the ultimate indication of emotional intelligence, right?).

Meghan (40) was a tween obsessed with Andie McDowell in Four Weddings and a Funeral when she decided to get a curly haircut like the actress in the movie.

But because she has “ethnic hair” she “looked like Krusty the Clown from The Simpsons”.

She also reminds us that the lavish lifestyle she now leads wasn’t her reality a few years ago.

The doors of the old Ford Explorer Sport she used to get to acting auditions stopped working and because she was a broke and struggling actress – we’re reading between the lines here – she had to get creative instead of getting the jalopy fixed.

“I would park in the back of the parking lot and open the trunk, then climb in and pull it shut behind me and crawl over all my seats to get out. That's how I would come to and fro.”

Loosely translated, what she’s actually saying is: I’m just like you people!

But just in case she hasn’t fully convinced us she’s traded the stiff-upper-lip of royal life for the freedom of the City of Angels, Meghan is almost giddy as she participates in a prank for the show.

Her performance is hilarious, at times cringeworthy but undeniably entertaining.

A producer of the show poses as an executive assistant named Pwamma to the Duchess. Pwamma sincerely asks vendors that when Meghan browses their stalls, “she just wants to be treated normally”.

A telling request, isn’t it?

Donning an earpiece and eagerly following Ellen’s instructions, Meghan squats, refers to herself as “mommy” and takes a swig of milk from a baby bottle as the bewildered vendors stare on.

The eight-minute clip ends with Meghan wearing kitten ears and singing, “I'm a kitten. Meow, meow, meow.”

As expected, I found the comments section of the various clips posted to Instagram bursting with opinionated viewers.

There were a few, “I thought she wanted to keep her life private” critics. But most typed what I had been thinking while watching her chat away: this is a happier Meghan than we’ve seen in recent times.

Back in Hollywood – and with the blinding Californian glow to prove it – Meghan is in her element.

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