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Deal or No Deal host Howie Mandel DEFENDS Meghan Markle ‘bimbo’ comment, ‘felt like nothing’ on show

Deal or No Deal host Howie Mandel has defended Meghan Markle’s controversial ‘bimbo’ comments, admitting that he ‘gets it’ because he also ‘felt like nothing’ and a ‘piece of meat’ while starring on the hit game show – days after the Duchess’ remarks were slammed by her fellow ‘briefcase girls.’

Mendel, 66, who hosted the show from 2005 to 2009, and again from 2018 to 2019 during its revival, said he was made to feel like ‘a piece of meat’ while responding to Markle’s claims that she was only valued for her ‘beauty’ not her ‘brains.’

‘I get it,’ he told US Weekly in a new interview. ‘I felt like nothing 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.

‘I don’t know why there is a big hoopla [about Meghan’s comments], except I have to say that me standing there with 26 women staring at me made me feel like a bimbo.

Deal or No Deal host Howie Mandel has defended Meghan Markle’s controversial ‘bimbo’ comments, admitting that he ‘gets it’ because he also ‘felt like nothing’ on the show – days after the Duchess’ remarks were slammed by her fellow ‘briefcase girls’

Mandel, 66, seen with Meghan (right) and her fellow briefcase girls - told US Weekly that he also 'felt like a bimbo' on the show, adding: 'They had this pyramid of 26 beautiful, intelligent women standing there just staring at me like I was a piece of meat'

Mandel, 66, seen with Meghan (right) and her fellow briefcase girls – told US Weekly that he also ‘felt like a bimbo’ on the show, adding: ‘They had this pyramid of 26 beautiful, intelligent women standing there just staring at me like I was a piece of meat’

'I get it,' he told US Weekly in a new interview. 'I felt like nothing... I don’t know why there is a big hoopla [about Meghan], except I have to say that me standing there with 26 women staring at me made me feel like a bimbo'

‘I get it,’ he told US Weekly in a new interview. ‘I felt like nothing… I don’t know why there is a big hoopla [about Meghan], except I have to say that me standing there with 26 women staring at me made me feel like a bimbo’

‘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. I was in the center, just dressed up in a suit and I felt like I am more than this.’

He explained that he didn’t think Meghan, 41, was ‘complaining’ or ‘maligning’ the show in her comments, adding, ‘I think Meghan just said she wanted to do more. It wasn’t fulfilling for her.’ 

Meghan, who appeared on 34 episodes of Deal or No Deal’s second season between 2006 and 2007, opened up about her experience on the series during a recent episode of her podcast, Archetypes.

The wife of Prince Harry said she was ‘reduced to a bimbo’ on the NBC game show, and that she quit because she felt she was being ‘objectified.’

She claimed her time on the show made her feel ‘not smart’ because it was all about ‘looks’ – and she even claimed a woman ‘in charge’ of the show would tell her to ‘suck it in’ before filming began, presumably an order to hold in her stomach on camera.

‘There were times when I was on set at Deal or No Deal and thinking back to my time working as an intern at the US Embassy in Argentina, Buenos Aires, and being in the motorcade with the secretary of treasury at the time and being valued specifically for my brain,’ she explained. 

‘Here, I was being valued for something quite the opposite. I ended up quitting the show. I was so much more than what was being objectified on the stage.

Meghan, who appeared on 34 episodes of Deal or No Deal's second season between 2006 and 2007, opened up about her experience on the series during a recent episode of her podcast, Archetypes, saying she felt 'objectified' as a briefcase girl

Meghan, who appeared on 34 episodes of Deal or No Deal’s second season between 2006 and 2007, opened up about her experience on the series during a recent episode of her podcast, Archetypes, saying she felt ‘objectified’ as a briefcase girl

Several of Meghan's fellow Deal or No Deal 'briefcase girls' hit back at the Duchess' claims in the wake of her podcast comments - including Patricia Kara (picturefd)

Several of Meghan's fellow Deal or No Deal 'briefcase girls' hit back at the Duchess' claims in the wake of her podcast comments - including Patricia Kara

Several of Meghan’s fellow Deal or No Deal ‘briefcase girls’ hit back at the Duchess’ claims in the wake of her podcast comments – including Patricia Kara (left) 

Kara (seen with briefcase nine), 50, starred in the popular series for its entire 2005 to 2009 on-air run - appearing alongside Meghan (seen with briefcase 24), 41, in all 34 of the episodes that the Duchess of Sussex featured in

Kara (seen with briefcase nine), 50, starred in the popular series for its entire 2005 to 2009 on-air run – appearing alongside Meghan (seen with briefcase 24), 41, in all 34 of the episodes that the Duchess of Sussex featured in

On her podcast, Meghan claimed that the briefcase girls were made to visit special makeover 'stations' backstage where they would have their bras padded - but Patricia furiously denied that a 'bra station' ever existed

On her podcast, Meghan claimed that the briefcase girls were made to visit special makeover 'stations' backstage where they would have their bras padded - but Patricia furiously denied that a 'bra station' ever existed

On her podcast, Meghan claimed that the briefcase girls were made to visit special makeover ‘stations’ backstage where they would have their bras padded – but Patricia furiously denied that a ‘bra station’ ever existed

‘I didn’t like feeling forced to be all looks and little substance. That’s how it felt for me at the time, being reduced to this specific archetype, the word bimbo.’ 

She added that she wanted her one-year-old daughter, Lilibet, to valued first for her mind, rather than her ‘beauty,’ unlike she was on the show.

‘I want our daughter to aspire to be slightly higher,’ she stated. ‘Yeah, I want my Lili to want to be educated and want to be smart and to pride herself on those things.’

Since speaking out, many of the former Suits star’s fellow former Deal or No Deal briefcase girls have responded and condemned her comments, including Patricia Kara, 50, who starred in the popular series for its entire 2005 to 2009 on-air run. 

Patricia bit back at the Duchess’ claims that the models on the show had to undergo certain physical transformations at different ‘stations’ backstage.

Meghan claimed during her podcast that she and the other women on the show were forced to ‘line up’ for various beauty treatments including ‘padding in their bras,’ attaching fake eyelashes, and ‘putting in’ hair extensions. 

‘We were even given spray-tan vouchers each week because there was a very cookie cutter idea, of precisely what we should look like,’ she added. ‘It was solely about our beauty.’

However, Patricia claimed this wasn’t the case during an appearance on Inside Edition, stating: ‘There was no bra station, there was no bra station.’

When asked whether Meghan’s comments about being ‘objectified’ were ‘familiar’ to her, Patricia said that she never had that kind of negative experience, noting that she walked away from the game show with nothing but positive memories – so much so that she even returned to the show as a briefcase girl for its reboot in 2018. 

‘Not at all. It’s unfortunate that she felt that way because in my experience I never ever felt that way,’ the model said. 

Patricia's comments on Meghan's controversial 'bimbo' claims cane two days after another of the Duchess' former Deal or No Deal co-stars - Claudia Jordan - also spoke out to slam her statements

Patricia's comments on Meghan's controversial 'bimbo' claims cane two days after another of the Duchess' former Deal or No Deal co-stars - Claudia Jordan - also spoke out to slam her statements

Patricia’s comments on Meghan’s controversial ‘bimbo’ claims cane two days after another of the Duchess’ former Deal or No Deal co-stars – Claudia Jordan – also spoke out to slam her statements 

Real Housewives of Atlanta star Claudia, 49 - who appeared alongside Meghan, 41, on the show in the mid-2000s - posted a furious rant about the Duchess on her Instagram Stories

Real Housewives of Atlanta star Claudia, 49 – who appeared alongside Meghan, 41, on the show in the mid-2000s – posted a furious rant about the Duchess on her Instagram Stories

TV hosts Whoopi Goldberg and Megyn Kelly even spoke out about Meghan’s remarks; during an episode of The View, Whoopi, 66 – who is famed for her liberal views – accused the Duchess of ‘making other women feel bad’ with her comments

She said: ‘My point is, if you see it and that’s how you feel, just maybe you don’t want to make the other women feel bad because maybe they’re not – you know, maybe they’re trying to make a living too.’

Meanwhile former Fox News host Megyn, 51, also condemned Meghan’s statements about Deal or No Deal, claiming that the former actress-turned royal ‘knew exactly what she was getting herself into’ when she signed on to be on the show. 

‘The laughable notion that she did not know what she was getting herself into when she took a job in which one’s only mission is to look tan, wear false eyelashes and wear a skimpy shiny dress while opening a suitcase,’ she said on her SiriusXM podcast. 

‘She knew exactly what she was getting herself into on that job and it was no surprise to her that they wanted her to look as good as possible while doing it.

‘What she’s trying to con us on now is whether she enjoyed it. She loved every minute of it. She wanted to be objectified. She wanted the adulation just like she still wants it to this day.’

One of the first people to publicly take aim at Meghan’s comments was another of her fellow former briefcase girls, Real Housewives of Atlanta star Claudia Jordan, who took to Instagram Stories to furiously blast Meghan’s statements, insisting that the show never treated its models like ‘bimbos’ – and noting that producers actually chose briefcase girls based on their ‘outgoing personalities’ rather than just looks. 

‘For clarity – yes getting a modeling gig on a game show isn’t necessarily about your intellect, but every show the executive producers picked five models with the most outgoing and fun personalities to place mics on, who they knew would engage with the contestants,’ she wrote in a post on her Instagram. ‘And Deal or No Deal never treated us like bimbos. We got so many opportunities because of that show.’ 

The reality star, who starred in Deal or No Deal for four seasons from 2005 to 2009, added that it’s the ‘kind of opportunity’ that ‘is what you make it.’ She continued: ‘If you just show up and don’t engage – then you’ll just get your check and not get much out of it.

‘But if you show up and seize your moments, there’s no limits to what you can do with the opportunity.’

Claudia explained that she ‘enjoyed’ working on Deal or No Deal, and claimed it helped launch a major career for her.

‘It was a step on the ladder I’ve been ascending on for 25 years that paid all my bills, put me in front of 13 million people a night, and led to me getting on Celebrity Apprentice, Celebrity Apprentice All Stars, a breast cancer awareness campaign, guest hosting Extra, getting into People magazine’s 100 Most Beautiful issue, and so much more,’ she continued. 

‘It also led to me co-hosting the 2009 Miss Universe pageant with @BillyBush in front of half a billion people. Not to shabby for a “bimbo.”’

While the 49-year-old wanted her followers to know that she was not ‘attacking’ Meghan, she said it was important for her to defend the show, and all of the people who worked so hard to make it a success. 

‘Lord knows I’ve been defending this woman in the media for years,’ she explained. ‘And I still will, but I just didn’t want any misunderstanding about the climate and environment on the Deal or no Deal set. And I’m especially protective of [host] Howie Mandel, who was nothing but kind and respectful to all 26 of us.’

Royal biographer Angela Levin also discussed Meghan’s comments exclusively with DailyMail.com, explaining that the ‘very attractive’ actress ‘didn’t have to take the job,’ and ‘could have said no.’ He added that the fact she chose to do it ‘meant that she wanted it.’ 

Meghan made the comments on her Spotify podcast. She and Prince Harry signed a three-year podcast deal with the streaming giant for an estimated $18 million

Meghan made the comments on her Spotify podcast. She and Prince Harry signed a three-year podcast deal with the streaming giant for an estimated $18 million

However, Claudia insisted that producers worked to highlight the models with the 'most outgoing and fun personalities', adding that she never felt like a 'bimbo' while on the show

However, Claudia insisted that producers worked to highlight the models with the ‘most outgoing and fun personalities’, adding that she never felt like a ‘bimbo’ while on the show

Although Claudia insisted that she wasn't trying to 'attack' Meghan, the Real Housewives star noted that Deal or No Deal gave people opportunities if they 'seized their moments'

Although Claudia insisted that she wasn't trying to 'attack' Meghan, the Real Housewives star noted that Deal or No Deal gave people opportunities if they 'seized their moments'

Although Claudia insisted that she wasn’t trying to ‘attack’ Meghan, the Real Housewives star noted that Deal or No Deal gave people opportunities if they ‘seized their moments’

Meghan (seen circled on the show in the back) had very differing opinions about the way in which briefcase girls were treated to her former co-star Claudia (seen circled in the front)

Meghan (seen circled on the show in the back) had very differing opinions about the way in which briefcase girls were treated to her former co-star Claudia (seen circled in the front)

Whoopi Goldberg slammed Meghan Markle over the royal's latest podcast on Saturday, suggesting Meghan's dismissive comments about her time as a briefcase girl on Deal or No Deal had shamed the other women appearing on the show

Whoopi Goldberg slammed Meghan Markle over the royal’s latest podcast on Saturday, suggesting Meghan’s dismissive comments about her time as a briefcase girl on Deal or No Deal had shamed the other women appearing on the show 

The panel on The View said Meghan was well within her rights to quit her role on Deal or No Deal if it made her feel bad

The panel on The View said Meghan was well within her rights to quit her role on Deal or No Deal if it made her feel bad

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Read more at DailyMail.co.uk