For more from the Annals of Inappropriate Royal Influence, we get the BBC deciding to postpone its new documentary on Charles Windsor’s efforts to spin the press, after some royal lawyers oozed up to them in the canteen and leaned heavily on their shoulders. Jessica Elgot reports in the HuffPo UK:
According to the Radio Times, the documentary, presented by former Panorama editor Steve Hewlett, was pulled from the 9pm slot on Sunday’s schedule after lawyers “known to represent senior members of the royal family” had made contact.
Reinventing The Royals is described on the corporation’s website as a “two-part series about the twenty-year battle between the monarchy and the media – the first family and the fourth estate – over personal privacy and public image”.
I guess now we need another documentary on the battle between the monarchy and the media over showing a documentary about the battle between the monarchy and the media. Maybe there can be an infinite loop.
A statement from the corporation said: “The BBC is delaying broadcast of the documentary Reinventing The Royals, due to be shown on BBC Two on January 4, until later in the New Year while a number of issues including the use of archive footage are resolved.”
How fraffly kind and deferential of them. It wouldn’t do for the royals to be subject to too much public scrutiny. Their job is to spend other people’s money and live in luxury, not to be questioned or criticized by the peasants.
Anti-monarchy campaign Republic have said they will write to James Harding, the BBC’s head of news and current affairs, to seek clarification on why the documentary has been postponed.
Republic’s spokesman Graham Smith, said: “The decision to delay broadcast of this documentary looks like undue pressure and interference that would not be tolerated if it were from Cameron or Miliband.
“At best the BBC might make a quick edit to avoid libelling someone – but delaying the broadcast so it can discuss the content of a documentary with its principal subject is unacceptable.
“The BBC has a responsibility to the public to show no fear or favour in its reporting. Prince Charles is in line to be Britain’s head of state – he must be subjected to the same standards of media scrutiny as any politician.
“The BBC and other broadcasters are far too deferential to the royals. It’s time they began to treat them in the same way they treat politicians and other public officials.”
That’s how it seems to me. I dislike all this bowing and scraping, this jumping when a royal says jump. It’s demeaning. Plus it only encourages Charles to think he’s a fine amateur doctor.