On 'I Wanna Marry Harry,' Why Does Everyone Call Matt Hicks "Sir"?
Fox may have had little faith in their long-con dating prank I Wanna Marry Harry, but that doesn't mean there aren't some looming questions remaining. The network canceled the show after just four episodes, but it has a continued life online, with the full eight episode season available on Hulu and Fox Now. We already know 24-year-old actress Kimberly Birch won Matt Hicks' heart, but that's not the important mystery we're wondering about. The real question, of course, is why everyone on the show called the fake Harry "Sir." As a couple of reporters from The Wire point out, if the show were really keen on keeping up with the whole nobility charade, he'd be referred to as His Royal Highness and not the simple Sir, especially where his hired help, the equally fake butler Kingsley, was concerned.
But not so fast on that "they got it wrong" bandwagon. Loyal viewers will recall that the show didn't even hint at our faux-Harry's royal identity until episode three, and didn't explicitly toss around the mention until episode five. Kingsley referring to his fake boss as Sir only heightened the mystery and the "is he or isn't he Prince Harry" guessing game among the contestants. If the show had gone with calling him 'His Royal Highness' straight out of the gate, we would have lost a lot of that discussion and deliberation—and possibly seen some legal issues arise.
Not to mention, we would have been denied some great moments of the girls musing about the ins-and-outs of British high society (real and imagined) as they attempted to pinpoint if they had an honest-to-god royal on their hands.
While there is a slight creepiness to women referring to a potential romantic partner as Sir (are they hunting for a boss or a boyfriend?), there was really no other way for the show to go about it, without ruining the tease. Calling Hicks Sir also avoided ever directly referring to him as Prince Harry or even just Harry, which likely could've caused legal problems for the series.
Let us not forget, this is a reality program that started with everyone masked, so teasing out the main bachelor's supposed title or name was all a part of the game. It's also a reality program that simultaneously tricks innocent contestants and helps someone masquerade as British royalty.
So "Sir" probably served to make better television and minimize lawsuits from the real royals. We think Kingsley would approve, these kinds of cons seem to be right up his alley.
Images: FOX, marryharryFOX/Tumblr