Body Language Expert Says Meghan Markle’s ‘Bizarre’ Answer Was an Attempt to Be Relatable

A body language expert took a closer look at Meghan Markle’s gestures and expressions displayed during the Netflix documentary Harry & Meghan. Meghan’s body language was revealing when she was asked a simple question and appeared to hesitate before giving a “non-answer.”

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle smile while attending an event.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle | Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

Meghan Markle hesitated when asked ‘why’ they made the documentary ‘Harry & Meghan,’ expert points out

On his YouTube channel The Behavioral Arts, body language expert Spidey shared his analysis of the Netflix documentary.

He kicked off his analysis by looking at Meghan’s answer to the question, “Why did you want to make this documentary?” Her body language contradicted her answer, according to the expert.

She answered, “Um,” then paused. “I’m not going to say that it’s comfortable,” Meghan continued. “But when you feel like people haven’t gotten any sense of who you are for so long, it’s really nice to just be able to have the opportunity to let people have a bit more of a glimpse into what’s happened and also who we are.”

Spidey first pointed out the hesitation before Meghan answered the question, saying it “caught me off guard.”

He continued, “She hesitates for a while before she even begins to answer. And, to me, the first question I had in my head is ‘Why didn’t you think about this? You’ve been thinking about this project for a while, you’ve been working on it for a while. This is probably a question that you knew very much you’re going to be asked.”

The expert added, “Why are we seeing this suspense, this hesitation before we actually get to any semblance of an answer? That was bizarre for me.”

Meghan used ‘delaying tactics’ when she answered

Spidey called Meghan’s response, “I’m not going to say it’s comfortable,” a “non-answer statement.”

She was asked about her goal and didn’t answer the question directly. “You weren’t asked if you’re comfortable [or] if you’re uncomfortable but she snuck that in,” Spidey pointed out.

Meghan’s response started with hesitation, the word “um,” followed by a deep breath, and her “non-answer statement.” Spidey explained, “In behavioral analysis, we call all these things ‘delaying tactics’ — basically anything that you put between the end of the question and the beginning of the answer. And typically we’re delaying to buy time to think of a good answer.”

The expert said this doesn’t “indicate deception” but the “delaying tactics” do “indicate that there’s a certain intention.” It gives the person “a moment to spin it right” when presenting their message.

Spidey pointed out Meghan’s “very slow blink” as she says, “I’m not going to say it’s comfortable.” Meghan’s blink didn’t seem to indicate her dealing with an “unpleasant image” but rather an “internalized focus” while she was gathering her thoughts, according to the expert.

He concluded, “All this to me indicates that she needs a second here to go to that narrative. And we’re not getting her first initial gut response. We’re getting something that she thought about.”

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Expert looks at Meghan Markle’s body language as she attempts to be relatable

Spidey also looked more closely at how her body language didn’t support her “bizarre” answer.

“The second reason that struck me as a bizarre thing to say is because her body language during that statement and throughout this documentary never suggests discomfort,” he explained. “Ever.”

“I don’t see discomfort, especially in this moment. It’s very rare that when we’re uncomfortable we expose our neck,” the expert pointed out. “Usually discomfort is, we close in, we’re guarded. So you’re saying you’re not comfortable but your body language is saying different.”

Spidey said her answer was on brand for “what Meghan does as an actress” because “it kind of gets you curious” and “pulls the audience in.”

He continued, “But the second, and bigger reason I think she started with that, is because Meghan often makes attempts to be relatable.”

Spidey explained, “She’s trying to be relatable because she knows that to most people, it’s uncomfortable to be in front of a camera, to tell your story… so by saying that, I don’t think she’s speaking to her discomfort, I think she’s speaking to the discomfort most people would feel in a situation like this in order to connect.”

Showbiz Cheat Sheet acknowledges conditions and cultures can impact body language and is sensitive to all backgrounds.