During the episode, Alex spoke about the "overwhelming amount of negative press" the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have received over the years and how this has been "incredibly damaging" to their mental health, which the couple discussed during their recent tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey. He then addressed Piers' commentary on Meghan, specifically.
"I understand that you don't like Meghan Markle. You've made it so clear a number of times on this program—a number of times," Alex said. "And I understand that you've got a personal relationship with Meghan Markle or had one and she cut you off. She's entitled to cut you off if she wants to. Has she said anything about you since she cut you off? I don't think she has but yet you continue to trash her."
It was at this moment that Piers got up and left. "OK, I'm done with this," he said while walking off. "Sorry. No. Sorry. You can trash me mate, but not on my own show. See you later. Sorry, can't do this."
Alex then called Piers' exit "pathetic." "This is absolutely diabolical behavior," he added. "I'm sorry, but Piers spouts off on a regular basis and we all have to sit there and listen. 6:30 to 7:00 o'clock yesterday was incredibly hard to watch."
Piers later tweeted that he "was annoyed, went for a little cool-down, and came back to finish the discussion."
"What we need to do Alex is talk to each other in a civilized manner given we work on the same show, on the same team," he said, per Variety, once he returned. "You launching into a pretty personally derogatory monologue on one of your colleagues probably isn't one of the best ways to go about it."
According to HuffPo, Alex then told Piers he's "not trying to come on this show and take you down, tear you apart," noting "Just because we're on the same side, doesn't mean we have to have the same view."
Piers recently received backlash for his comments on Meghan's discussion of mental health. During her interview with Oprah, Meghan shared there was a point where she "didn't want to be alive anymore."
"I went to the institution, and I said that I needed to go somewhere to get help," she said. "I said that, 'I've never felt this way before, and I need to go somewhere.' And I was told that I couldn't, that it wouldn't be good for the institution."
But Piers questioned Meghan during the March 8 episode of Good Morning Britain. "OK, again, let's have the names. Who did you go to? What did they say to you?" he said. "I'm sorry, I don't believe a word she says Meghan Markle."
Mental health organization, Mind, criticized Piers for his remarks, and the 55-year-old anchor addressed his comments during the March 9 broadcast.
"When we talked about this yesterday, I said, as an all-encompassing thing, 'I don't believe what Meghan Markle is saying generally in this interview.' And I still have serious concerns about the veracity of a lot of what she said," he said. "But let me just state for the record about my position on mental illness and on suicide. Mental illness and suicide—these are clearly extremely serious things. They should be taken extremely seriously. And if somebody is feeling that way, they should get the treatment and the help that they need every time."
ITV chief executive Carolyn McCall also spoke out. "I completely believe what she said, that the most important thing with mental health that ITV does and is totally committed to, is that we support, we get people to speak up, we listen, we say everyone has to listen and everyone has to believe because that's how you get people to speak up," she said, per Variety. "So we are very committed to that."
As for Piers' connection to Meghan, he claimed they exchanged DMs on Twitter and met up at a pub in 2015, according to The Hollywood Reporter. "We had two hours in the pub, she had a couple of dirty martinis and a couple of pints. We got on brilliantly," he said on The Late Late Show. "Then I put her in a cab, and it turns out it was the cab that took her to a party where she met Prince Harry. And then the next night they had a solo dinner and that was the last I ever heard from Meghan Markle. I have never heard from her again…She ghosted me."
The Palace has yet to publicly comment on Meghan and Harry's interview.