While the Queen and Prince Charles are said to have seen the 90 Minutes, William and Kate only watched certain highlights of the Sussex TV blitzkrieg, in which they accused the Royals of racism (among other things).
As Harry and William prepare to be reunited for the unveiling of the statue of Diana, Princess of Wales at Kensington Palace on Thursday, it is fair to say that the emotions are still there, almost four months after the start of the show.
While there is no doubt that the royal brothers will publicly set aside their differences in memory of their beloved mother, in private a reconciliation seems unlikely.
According to a well-placed source: “Of course they will show courage for the event, as they did at the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral. They both know it’s not about them but about remembering the late princess.
“But the idea that all of this can be forgiven and forgotten… it’s going to take a lot longer than a few days. “
Still, as always, it looks like the Duchess of Cambridge will take action to help bridge the gap in the same way she encouraged a rapprochement between the brothers after Prince Philip’s funeral in April.
Contrary to recent reports suggesting they didn’t spend time together afterwards, William and Kate chatted with Harry for over an hour at Windsor Castle, along with Charles and Camilla. Other royals, including the Countess of Wessex, also spoke amicably to the self-exiled prince after the service at St George’s Chapel.
So, could another informal ‘summit’ be scheduled during Harry’s return to the UK?
The Duke, 36, has landed at Heathrow, but as he must self-isolate for five days after arriving in Britain – he would have to quarantine himself at Frogmore Cottage, his former home in Windsor – he wouldn’t be him possible to see his parents until Thursday at the earliest.
Meghan, 39, will not fly over as she only gave birth to their second child, Lilibet, less than a month ago and will stay in the family home in Montecito, Santa Barbara, with their two-year-old son , Archie.
Aides had wondered if Kate, 39, was due to attend Thursday’s engagement, but she won’t be attending. While William, 39, always wanted his wife for 10 years to be by his side, there were concerns that Harry would feel ‘overwhelmed’ by the Cambridges if they were there together, and he was alone.
Diana’s brother Earl Spencer and sisters Lady Sarah McCorquodale and Jane Fellowes are also expected to be in the Sunken Garden on what would have been Diana’s 60th birthday, with sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley and the gardener designer Pip Morrison.
Meghan’s absence, however, is seen as an opportunity to reconnect with what royal insiders describe as ‘old Harry’.
With the Duchess bracing for a ‘brutal confrontation’ with the palace over the intimidation allegations that have been made against her and her husband, it feels like the Royals have to walk a tightrope between defending the institution while keeping Sussex inside. The allegations, which the couple vehemently deny, are currently under investigation by an independent law firm.
As one insider explained: “When they talk to the Duke he says one thing, and they think they’ve made progress, then he talks to the Duchess and they feel like they’re back to square one. .
“It’s a really tough situation they’re trying to balance out here. “
Regular briefings out of LA via official and unofficial spokespersons – which the palace countered with its own briefings – only served to heighten the sense of paranoia surrounding the leaks.
And with William’s emotions probably best described as “confrontational,” Kate will play a central role behind the scenes.
The Duchess of Cambridge has reportedly said “very little” about Meghan’s claim that she made him cry during a bridesmaid dress fitting, apparently more concerned with mending broken royal ties.
Even before the couple sat down with Oprah, it was she who told her friends that she didn’t think it was too late to ‘bring them back’.