Rewind

The Week in Women: A royal engagement, Matt Lauer’s ‘shame,’ and Monica Lewinsky’s no-nonsense edits

Prince Harry and fiancee Meghan Markle. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

T.V. is basically the best thing to ever happen to the human race (sorry, antibiotics), so this week’s newsletter is all about the small screen. Let’s take a look back, shall we?

NBC News fired longtime Today show host Matt Lauer over allegations of sexual misconduct. His abrupt dismissal stemmed from a complaint filed by an employee accusing Lauer of “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.” A report published by Variety subsequently revealed allegations made by three different NBC employees, one of whom said that Lauer called her into his office and proceeded to expose himself. The office in question was reportedly modified so Lauer could lock the door without getting up from his desk, which is pretty terrifying. More allegations have since surfaced, including one from a female employee who said that Lauer had sexually assaulted her in his office in 2001. And current and former Today show employees have reportedly said that the hosts and NBC executives were well aware of Lauer’s misconduct, but swept it under the rug. Responding to these accusations, Lauer issued a statement saying that while some of what had been said about him was “untrue or mischaracterized … there is enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed.”

Not quite getting the memo on the prevailing thought about sexual misconduct, Angela Lansbury (a.k.a. your grandma’s favorite T.V. detective) said that women “must sometimes take the blame” for men being creeps. “We have to own up to the fact women, since time immemorial, have gone out of their way to make themselves attractive,” Lansbury told Radio Times. And unfortunately it has backfired on us, and this is where we are today.” She later apologized. To be fair, Lansbury is 92 years old, and there may be a generational gap at play here. But we’ll leave you with the words of one Twitter user, who opined that “Murder She Wrote would have been quite a different show if in each episode Angela Lansbury blamed the victim.”

Monica Lewinsky took HLN, a sister network of CNN, to task over an upcoming special titled The Monica Lewinsky Scandal. In a tweet on Tuesday, Lewinsky suggested other, more appropriate titles for the show: The Clinton Impeachment or The Starr Investigation. Because, you know, she was a 22-year-old intern at the time of the “scandal” in question, and certainly not its sole instigator. The network noticed Lewinsky’s tweet and agreed to change the title of the special to the The Clinton-Lewinsky Scandal. Better than nothing, we suppose.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are engaged (yay!), which may mean that Markle is moving on from her acting career (boo, if you’re a fan of Suits or, for some reason, the Hallmark Channel). Markle has reportedly informed Suits’ producers that she won’t be returning as a cast member for the show’s eighth season. But once she becomes a princess, Markle will be busy carrying out official duties, like attending events and advocating for charitable causes. Markle is already passionate about the latter, having worked with U.N. Women and World Vision. It will be interesting to see what causes she takes on after her marriage; if anyone is interested in placing bets, we would be happy to organize a royal-themed corgi race.

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