Meghan Markle admitted that she felt out of place during her time on Deal or No Deal. The Duchess of Sussex has been breaking down stereotypes about women on her new Archetypes podcast, and in October one episode focused on the "bimbo" media archetype. There, she said that she felt like she was undervalued during her time on Deal or No Deal.
Markle was one of the "briefcase girls" on Deal or No Deal for a while back in 2006 when he acting career was just getting off the ground. She hoped it would be a steady job to pay the bills while she auditioned for bigger parts, and said that she did not expect any creative or intellectual stimulation going into the job. Still, over time being reduced to her appearance and her ability to conform began to grate on Markle. She said that she was still shocked by cold efficiency of the glamorous operation.
Remember when Megan Markle was a Deal or No Deal model? pic.twitter.com/WGCfUNScDH— David Croom – (ツ) (@dailycallout) October 18, 2022
"I had also studied international relations in college, and there were times I was on set at Deal or No Deal and thinking back to my time working as an intern at the U.S. Embassy in Argentina in Buenos Aires and being in the motorcade with the security of treasury at the time and being valued specifically for my brain. Here, I was being valued for something quite the opposite," she explained.
Markle also described how she and the other "briefcase girls" were treated behind the scenes and what was expected of them. She said they were given vouchers for spray tans every week and expected to maintain a certain uniform physical appearance. She also recalled a long line of makeup and wardrobe stations they all needed to pass through before each taping – eyelashes, hair extensions and bra padding, among others. She said: "There was a very cookie-cutter idea of precisely what we should look like. It was solely about beauty – and no necessarily about brains."
"When I look back at that time, I'll never forget this one detail – because moments before we'd get on stage, there was a woman who ran the show and she'd be there backstage, and I can still hear her," Markle went on. She couldn't properly pronounce my last name at the time and I knew who she was talking to because she'd go, 'Markle, suck it in! Markle, suck it in!'"
Ultimately, Markle said this brazen superficiality led her to quit the game show. She said: "I was thankful for the job, but not for how it made me feel, which was not smart. And by the way, I was surrounded by smart women on that stage with me, but that wasn't the focus of why we were there. I would end up leaving with this pit in my stomach knowing that I was so much more than what was being objectified on the stage. I didn't like being forced to be all looks and little substance, and that's how it felt for me at the time – being reduced to this specific archetype."
Markle shared this experience with her guest of the week Paris Hilton, who explained that she and Nicole Richie played into their own stereotypes to please the producers of The Simple Life. You can listen to their conversation on Spotify, along with all the other episodes of Archetypes.