FURIOUS viewers have slammed Channel 4's fake Queen's speech which showed Her Majesty dancing and joking about Megxit.
The broadcaster stunned viewers with a "deepfake" of Her Majesty dancing on a table and making lame jokes about Prince Andrew, Harry and Meghan.
During Channel 4's alternative Christmas message, the Queen, played by actress Debra Stephenson, breaks into a TikTok dance routine which she hopes will get her onto Strictly Come Dancing.
She also speaks “plainly and from the heart” in the address to reveal what she and Prince Philip have been up to in lockdown, revealing her penchant for "Netflix and Phil".
The "monarch" then goes on to address her son Andrew who is embroiled in a sex scandal and grandson Harry and his wife Meghan’s move to Canada and then Los Angeles.
The Queen says: "Which is why I was so saddened by the departure of Harry and Meghan. There are few things more hurtful than someone telling you they prefer the company of Canadians.
“But at least I still have my beloved Andrew close by. It seems unlikely he’ll be heading to North America any time soon.”
Ending the address, she offers a stark warning against misinformation and "deepfakes", warning viewers to question “whether what we see and hear is always as it seems”.
The five-minute fake address – screened after families gathered around the telly to watch the real Queen deliver a rousing address to millions trapped in lockdown – raised very few laughs.
One Twitter-user said: "Disgusting. The Queen has been steadfast in her duty and is still going strong. God save the Queen."
Another wrote: "I am so irritated by Channel 4's mean spirited crashing of the Queen's Christmas message that I am going to watch the real one, even though I don't normally. We've all had a sh*t year Channel 4, there was no need for this."
Brit Trish Sayers said that she would rather go and "hold my hands on the hot plate for 10 minutes than watch this 'woke' rubbish."
Ingrid Seward, editor-in-chief of Majesty Magazine, said: "It is in really poor taste and didn't look that funny."There are a lot of people you can ridicule but not the Queen.
"This kind of thing would never have happened ten years ago."Channel 4 are using the Queen to get some publicity."
The real-life Queen, however, addressed the nation at 3pm today in a sombre look back at 2020 as she spends Christmas away from Sandringham for the first time in 33 years, saying: "Life needs to go on".
She told Brits she was "so proud" as she lifted the spirits of the nation and offered comfort to those currently alone after Covid blighted their plans.
On Christmas Eve, Channel 4 posted a video promoting the "deepfake" Christmas message which sparked outrage on Twitter with some accusing the broadcaster of "plumbing new depths" with the tongue-in-cheek portrayal.
One replied to the TV channel’s tweet: “That is so creepy. You remember that the Queen is a real person, actually alive and all that? Not just a character to play with?”
Another wrote: “Ffs. Channel 4 missing the mood of the country and plumbing new depths in the name of “comedy". Would rather watch her inspiring speech from lockdown than this."
A third added: "I've not been a fan of the royal family for a long time, but the way CH4 are doing this is utterly distasteful and downright diabolical. CH4 aren't attacking her for her deeds, they're attacking her because she's the head of state for a country CH4 despises."
Ian Katz, director of programmes at Channel 4, told the Mail Online: "Deepfake technology is the frightening new frontier in the battle between misinformation and truth.
What are ‘deepfakes’?
- Deepfake videos are made using artificial intelligence technology which can manipulate someone's face in a video to make it look like they are saying something that they didn't.
- A machine learning algorithm swaps out the faces frame-by-frame until it spits out a realistic, but fake, video
- It's one level up from dubbing, or lip syncing and can appear very convincing.
- There's rising concern among experts that convincing deepfakes could be used to spread misinformation and fake news on social media.
- Canada’s cybersecurity agency, The Communications Securities Establishment, last year warned that deepfakes pose a threat to democracy.
"This year's Alternative Christmas Address – seemingly delivered by one of the most familiar and trusted figures in the nation – is a powerful reminder that we can no longer trust our own eyes."
Director Bartlett said: "This was a great project to be asked to direct.
"Deepfake is an interesting spin-off from the recent advances made in machine learning and AI and, while it is a powerful new technique for image-makers everywhere, it is also a tool that can be used to misrepresent and deceive.
"With Channel 4, we wanted to create a sequence that is hopefully entertaining enough that it will be seen by a lot of people and thereby spreads the very real message that images cannot always be trusted."
The alternative take on the Queen’s Speech comes as a warning to Brits against the use of "deepfake" technology, which is able to swap people’s faces with others to create fictional situations that appear real.
"Deepfake technology has become increasingly prevalent over recent years and can be used to create convincing but completely manufactured video content of celebrities and high-profile figures.
Another eerily realistic clip that surfaced last year shows former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn backing rival Boris Johnson to become Prime Minister.
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