With every new excerpt revealed from his forthcoming memoir, “Spare” — be it the altercation with his balding brother William, his frostbitten penis or the time he slept with an older woman who “treated [him] like a young stallion” — the internet is having a ball.
In fact, Twitter users have taken it upon themselves to remix some of the stories the Duke of Sussex has shared, making the press tour even more entertaining. Briefly impersonating BBC News, culture writer Hanna Phifer decided to craft a few hilarious tweets showcasing Harry’s “revelations.”
One tweet read, “In his forthcoming memoir, Prince Harry writes about seeing Meghan in a bonnet for the first time. ‘From that moment, I knew I wanted to protect her the way satin protects her afro hair.’” Another tweet referenced a line from the hit series “Girlfriends,” while one poked fun at Tyler Perry’s Madea character. (Lest we forget Perry is Lilibet’s godfather.)
With over 30,000 likes on the aforementioned tweet alone, many users likely presumed that Phifer was letting these stories sit in her drafts for weeks, plotting on the right time to press send. The 27-year-old writer told HuffPost, “I am not as calculated as people probably think I am.”
However, this isn’t her first time impersonating outlets on the bird app; she once changed her profile picture and Twitter handle to resemble the popular account Film Updates.
“I’ll just randomly get bored and change my screen name and my icon to resemble a gossip blog and put out a series of fake news tweets,” she said. “This time, it was just basically the same thing. I mean, some of the things that are actually in his book are far more ridiculous than anything that I actually tweeted. It was so funny to see people try to parse what was real.”
Phifer said @writtenbyhanna is technically her professional Twitter account, but she has fortunately remained unscathed by policies banning parody accounts or impersonators.
“There’s like, two people working at Twitter right now. No one’s paying attention to me,” she said, laughing. Not everyone has such luck, though; actor and comedian Jaboukie Young-White, for example, has been banned numerous times and lost his verified blue check, notably after impersonating the FBI.
Apart from revealing the urgent need for media literacy in this country, Phifer’s hit tweets have, most importantly, inspired other iterations from other Black Twitter users.
Content creator and therapist Shahem Mclaurin wrote, “BREAKING: Prince Harry reveals in autobiography that he credits American rapper Ice Spice for encouraging him through rocky split with family.” Citing the Bronx rapper’s lyrics and impersonating the Duke, Mclaurin tweeted, “When she said ‘you did me dirt, but what I do?’ it resonated.”
There are arguably two camps here: sheer disbelief gawking at this trainwreck you can’t look away from versus general indifference toward the affairs of yet another white family entangled in a deeply racist, colonial institution. Simply put, Phifer said she’s just bored by the royal family drama.
“I have actual critiques of the institution, but I just find them to be boring. With this memoir, more interesting stuff is now coming out. This is essentially just family drama, just within the context of this institution,” Phifer said. “But still, I think [Harry] should just get a therapist, because people are trying to assign more to this than anything else. At the end of the day, he even said in a recent interview that he still cares about the monarchy. They’re not these radicals ... I just like poking fun at that.”
In the evergreen words of New York Times columnist Michelle Goldberg, “We Should All Know Less About Each Other.” Regardless, “Spare” is the gift that keeps on giving, thanks to Black Twitter’s ability to bring levity to any and every situation.