It seems Prince Harry hasn’t quite shaken his playboy image.
TMZ has posted nude pics of Harry and some pals (male and female) playing strip billiards in a hotel suite at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. The pics were snapped sometime last week, reportedly by the ladies-in-not-so-waiting. After Harry’s grandmother/Queen was done being grateful that (1) her Mum went to Queen Heaven and (2) Harry wasn’t in a Nazi uniform, she likely started clutching the world’s most expensive strand of pearls.
The pictures show 27-year-old Harry giving and getting naked hugs…
…and romping in a pool (dressed this time, because they do things differently in England).
He is also pictured wearing a Panama hat. Because Prince Harry may party like a frat boy, but he dresses like a D-List guest at your graduation open house.
Why is this news? Well, the royal family does live the sort of exceptional, regal life that makes everyone come down with a big, horking case of cognitive dissonance when they act like regular work-a-day jackasses. Next, there has always been a fascination with Harry, who will likely never ascend to the throne of England unlike his brother William and, therefore, always seems like a loose cannon ready to fire. He’s fun to watch.
Okay. Fine. It’s news. But it got me thinking: if the subject of the photos was Kate Middleton or, say, a female actress, we’d be wrestling with an entirely different dynamic. The tension between (a) wanting to cluck our tongues and chide the woman for going wild (or not being more careful doing it) and (b) wanting to smack the person who violated her trust and put her goods on display for the world to see. Since it’s Harry, we’re all “high fives” and “boys will be boys,” with just a dash of “oh, poor Gran” mixed in for good measure. But what if Harry feels totally icked and objectified by his party pals leaking these pictures? We’d call him a pussy, that’s what. If a woman said, “This was to be private fun,” we’d at least split into two camps (rancorous and less rancorous).
But on the flipside, what if a woman were in Harry’s place and was having the time of her life? Would we be okay with that? Would we celebrate it? Shrug it off? Call me a cynic, but I don’t think so. I suppose it’s an argument that can only go in circles. And, honestly, I don’t care who’s naked in Vegas. I bet you don’t either. But I think it’s worth stopping and wondering, “When would you care and what does that say about all of us?”
*Removes her halo and goes to Google half-dressed pictures of True Blood‘s Sam Trammell*