We can file Prince Andrew’s attempt to shut down the furore over his friendship with Jefferey Epstein as "job not done".

Those expecting an apology or even a hint of understanding about the level of anger felt towards him would have been left disappointed.

The reaction to the Newsnight interview, conducted with an admirable lack of reverence on the part of Emily Maitlis, was almost universally scathing. Prince Andrew was criticised for his lack of self-awareness, both in how he heaped praise on himself and his failure to properly articulate any sympathy for Epstein’s many victims.

This most unlikable of royals is the living embodiment of the grotesque privilege that underpins and upholds the monarchy. He showed the absurdity of its bloated, undeserving place in our modern democracy.

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That Prince Andrew is a funded representative of our country exposes the fault line in the power structures of the UK. Where the conduct of public servants is rightly scrutinised and subject to an albeit flawed system of checks and balances, but members of the taxpayer-funded Royal Family are not.

When serious questions are raised over their conduct, we are reliant on them volunteering to open themselves up to scrutiny.

They are, for the most part, reluctant to do so. In the case of Prince Andrew, you get the sense that ego and an overblown assessment of his own intellect played a not insignificant part in his decision to agree to a sit-down interview.

It was his opportunity to explain – among other things – what first attracted him to billionaire Jeffery Epstein and why he remained in contact with him once he became aware of his crimes.

During the world-exclusive interview Prince Andrew told Emily Maitlis "I don’t go into friendships looking for the wrong thing.’’

Most would agree this is a reasonable approach to personal relationships. Up and until the point your friend pleads guilty to soliciting and procuring a minor for prostitution and you don’t immediately break off all contact.

His decision to stay at Epstein’s New York mansion with him after he had been released from prison was, according to the prince, a chance to explain to Epstein that it would be "inappropriate’’ for the pair to be "seen together’’.

Leaving aside the inconsistency of that logic, it is telling that Prince Andrew’s thinking was guided more by brand management than the normal, human, reluctance to remain friends with a sex offender.

Whatever the reason he says he decided to cease contact with Epstein, why was it necessary to do it over the course of a four-day visit?

The answer seemed amount to, etiquette. To merely pick up the phone would have been the "chicken’s way of doing it’’ according to the prince. When one is disavowing a sex offender they must do so in person.

That oh-so-brave conversation between the pair took place during a walk in Central Park.

"I said to him – look, because of what has happened, I don’t think it is appropriate that we should remain in contact.’’

READ MORE: Prince Andrew criticised over ‘disastrous’ Newsnight interview

Given he had six months to prepare for the interview and a team of presentation experts at his disposal to coach him on his performance, such careless use of language is remarkable.

"What has happened’’ is - at best - a bizarre way to describe the sexual abuse of women and girls. Such passive language sanitises Epstein’s crimes and diminishes his culpability for them.

It was one of many ill-judged statements made by the Prince during the shambolic interview.

He described Epstein’s crimes as behaviour that was "unbecoming’’.

The closest he came to acknowledging his own poor judgment was in saying "I let the side down’’. The "side’’ of which Prince Andrew spoke was not decency, but the Royal Family. There was no mention of the women and girls abused by Epstein, nor any recognition or even mention of the impact of the horrors they had endured.

He was pressed by Maitlis about why – if the purpose of the New York visit was to cut contact - he stayed with Epstein for several days and attended a dinner party at his home to celebrate his release.

"You are staying at the home of a convicted sex offender.’’

"It was a convenient play to stay’’ replied the Prince.

Perhaps we should cut Prince Andrew some slack for his poor decision making. He admits that his judgment was coloured by his tendency to be "too honourable’’.

In any circumstances, only a rampant narcissist would describe themselves in such a way. To do so while being questioned about your friendship with a convicted sex offender is odious.

Was this pre-scripted turn of phrase designed to elicit sympathy from the viewer?

Poor, noble Prince Andrew. What a terrible burden it must be to be so damn honourable all the time. Unless you’ve had to make that arduous journey across the Atlantic to come to a "mutual agreement’’ with your billionaire paedophile friend about the direction of your friendship going forward, then you’re not able to judge.

In trailing the interview, the BBC made clear that no questions were vetted in advance. So it came as no surprise that Maitlis asked Prince Andrew about the allegations made by Virginia Giuffre Roberts about the Prince’s own conduct.

Roberts alleges that she was forced to have sex with Prince Andrew on three occasions. Allegations which he has previously denied and did so again during the Newsnight interview, saying that he had "no recollection’’ of ever meeting her. He suggested that the infamous photo of the two together may have been doctored.

He gave several reasons why the public should think Roberts’ allegations lack credibility. He said he couldn’t have shared a sweaty dance with her in Tramp nightclub because he has a condition which means he doesn’t sweat.

He couldn’t have bought her drinks because he doesn’t know where the bar is.

He couldn’t have been with Roberts that night because he was dining at Pizza Express in Woking with his daughter.

Among all this unnecessary detail he omitted to mention the first thing that would surely spring to mind if any ordinary person was faced with accusations of sexual contact with a person who is underage. Namely, that such actions are illegal, a vile abuse of power and that very thought of it fills him with revulsion.

Throughout the interview, his memory was rich and vivid when offering answers to questions that weren’t asked. Far less so when tested against the forensic interrogation of a journalist as experienced as Emily Maitlis.

While the decision to agree to the interview will be subject to the angry scrutiny of the palace PR machine in the coming days, we should perhaps feel grateful to Prince Andrew. We came away knowing more about his belief system and the moral code he lives his life by than we did before.

And we learned plenty about his character. Unfortunately for Prince Andrew, it was what he showed us - not what he told us - that was the ultimately the most illuminating aspect of the whole spectacle.