"I was in the center, just dressed up in a suit, and I felt like I am more than this."
Howie Mandel is in support of Meghan Markle’s recent comments about her stint on “Deal or No Deal.”
The 66-year-old “America’s Got Talent” judge said he didn’t understand the criticism Markle has been receiving after she said she felt objectified while serving as a “briefcase girl” on the game show.
“I don’t think Meghan is complaining,” the comedian said during an interview with Us Weekly. “I think Meghan just said she wanted to do more. It wasn’t fulfilling for her.”
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He added, “I don’t think she’s maligning Deal or No Deal. I don’t think there weren’t ever [any] complaints from any of the women. And unlike most shows up until that point, the ladies had more to do. They weren’t just pointing out gifts and opening [cases], a lot of times they were mic’d and they had their input.”
Like Meghan, Howie said he felt the same while hosting the show and described feeling “like I was a piece of meat” while a pyramid of women would tower over him.
“I get it because — I’ve never said this before — but they had this pyramid of 26 beautiful, intelligent women standing there just staring at me like I was a piece of meat,” he shared. “I was in the center, just dressed up in a suit, and I felt like I am more than this. And they would just look at me, and I had to do nothing.”
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“I get it. I felt like nothing,” Mandel continued. “And that’s why I’ve moved on and become a judge on America’s Got Talent. I just needed more than to be a Deal or No Deal host.”
Earlier this month, Markle released an episode of her podcast “Archetypes” where she debunked the stereotype of the “bimbo” with guest Paris Hilton. Markle explained that she felt “objectified” and eventually left the show because of it.
“I was thankful for the job, but not for how it made me feel, which was not smart,” Meghan explained. “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.”
The 41-year-old claimed that she would finish filming “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: the word ‘bimbo,'” she said.
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