'He's the Boris Johnson of the Royal Family'

Prince Harry reportedly pictured in Las Vegas. Photo / Twitter
Prince Harry reportedly pictured in Las Vegas. Photo / Twitter

The British papers have had a field day with Prince Harry's Las Vegas hijinks, but questions are being asked about whether it is time for the 27-year-old to grow up.

The Daily Mail lead the charge, with the "Naked Prince Harry pictured cavorting with nude girl in VIP suite during raucous Vegas holiday".

This story was accompanied by a travel blog, "Why everyone - royals included - should visit silly Sin City at least once".

"There will no doubt be a few murmurs of derision about the third in line to the throne being caught on camera splashing about in a pool (although seeing as Harry is never likely to come anywhere close to being king, and he doesn't have much else to do now that his role as Olympic cheerleader has ebbed to an end, he may as well hang out in the shallow end with a coterie of admirers)," Chris Leadbeater wrote.

"But the chief nugget of information to draw from this minor gossip item is that Harry has contracted a condition that has ensnared many before him. He has caught the Vegas Bug."

The Mirror pointed to Harry's track record of recklessness with the photo gallery - "Nudes, nightclubs and Nazi fancy dress: A decade of Prince Harry scandals".

"He is the loose cannon of the Royal Family whose antics have regularly made headlines.

And today's photos of a naked Prince Harry in a Las Vegas hotel room with a nude woman is the latest gaffe in a long list of scandals that have dogged his public life.

"In the past he has given his critics plenty of ammunition, from smoking cannabis as a teenager to a nightclub scuffle with a paparazzi photographer."

Ingrid Seward, editor of Majesty magazine and royal biographer hailed Harry the "Boris Johnson of the Royal Family".

"We can stand on our lofty moral high ground and say, 'how can he be so stupid and put himself in such a position' but it is that buffoonery in him that we all love," she told the Telegraph.

"I don't think it will damage the Royal Family at all. He's the Boris Johnson of the Royal Family."

The Telegraph's Dan Hodges, said Harry is just being an ordinary young man.

"When I was 27, that's exactly the sort of thing I was up to. Well, it's the sort of thing I would have been up to, if I could have used the chat-up line 'I'm third in line to the British throne'.

"I have to say though, if I'd ended up the way Prince Harry ended I'd have been pretty ashamed of myself. Mate, you've got to get your pool technique sorted out. You're playing abroad and you're letting your country down. Learn to cover the pockets."

Another blogger for the Telegraph, Jenny McCartney said the time for Harry's antics to end has come.

"His role in the Royal Family is that of the roguish younger brother: a bit of a flirt, a bit of a wag, a bit of a one, but serious when duty and the occasion demands it. He is also still only 27. I expect that the public will give him a pardon on the Vegas indiscretions, because such antics are broadly in keeping with his age and persona, but - as he approaches 30 - he might want to think about toning down the high jinks."

The Guardian's Emma Keller went as far to argue that - like Fergie after her divorce - it is time to strip Harry of his title.

"He could get as drunk as he likes and strip of all over the place - just like any old toff. Zzzzz to that, we'd say.

"He'd still have a job. He has a real job in the army already that has nothing to do with being royal. You have to give him credit for it."

However Britons spoken to on London's Prince of Wales Road by Associated Press were not so fussed by Harry's behaviour.

Jim Conlon, a 60-year-old construction worker said he had done nothing wrong.

"I'd be proud of him if he were my son," he said.

Craig Martin, 38, another construction worker: "He's the prince. He can have any bird he wants."

Caregiver Shirley Ashard laughed at the news of Harry's naked adventure, dismissing questions about the propriety of running around a plush hotel room in the buff with a boys-will-be-boys shrug.

"I've got kids. They do things like that," the 59-year-old said. "He's a lad, for God's sake."
Not everyone laughed the prince's antics.

Hanad Darwish, a 19-year-old student from Birmingham, worried about what Harry's hijinks said about his judgment.

"It is a little immature and gives the royals a bad image," he said.

While the British public may be willing to cut the prince some slack, the British Army is likely to be less than impressed. Military codes of conduct require officers maintain high standards on and off operations.

A former instructor at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst told the Telegraph Harry is most likely to face an "interview without coffee".

- Herald Online, AP

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