2020 has been a year of reckoning for many people, and for many TV viewers, it was completely unexpected for Ellen DeGeneres and her talk show to get caught up in the middle of a large-scale backlash after current and former employees laid out a variety of toxic workplace allegations against the long-running program. Moves were made behind the scenes – such as producers being fired, among other things – but fans have been waiting a while to hear a proper response from DeGeneres herself.
That day has finally arrived, with The Ellen DeGeneres Show having recently recorded its first new episode of the fall season, following its summer hiatus. Having previously made apologies to her crew behind the scenes, DeGeneres looked a little nervous, and her voice was slightly shaky as she started her first monologue since the initial backlash kicked off. Here's how it all kicked off:
To be expected, Ellen DeGeneres' apology and explanation to her fans came complete with some jokes and silliness, and I'm sure people's mileage will vary on how well those jokes landed. But true to her word, she spent more than just a few minutes addressing the notion that the buck stops with her, considering her name is what gives the show its power and popularity. And she seemingly renewed her vow to right the wrongs that had (allegedly) piled up over the years.
Even beyond just the behind-the-scenes issues, Ellen DeGeneres spoke directly to the claims that she doesn't have the same cheery and happy-go-lucky attitude in private that she does whenever the cameras are rolling. Having already spoken out about the "no eye contact" rumor, DeGeneres talked about her "Be Nice Lady" persona, saying:
Not that Ellen DeGeneres was speaking to a live, in-person audience. Given COVID restrictions, the show supplemented its usual in-studio viewers with a bunch of vertical screens that allowed fans to appear virtually from their own houses. It would have been interesting to see if DeGeneres' demeanor would have changed had there been actual crowd members for her to apologize to.
Here, Ellen DeGeneres specifically apologized to those she may have hurt with her words and actions.
Understandably, Ellen DeGeneres wants her show to be a place for laughs and good feelings. And maybe it can be that way again if this season goes by completely smoothly and without further controversies rearing their allegedly ugly heads.
So what do you all think? Is Ellen giving fans the real deal with that apology, or is that just something that needed to be said so that she didn't start off the new season with all kinds of bad blood puddling up on the floor of the studio? To be sure, DeGeneres has had plenty of celebs coming to her defense amidst all the naysaying, but clearly not everyone has been on her side.
The Ellen DeGeneres Show airs daily in syndication, so check your local listings to see when and where it's playing in your area. In the meantime, head to our Fall TV 2020 premiere schedule to see what new and returning shows are on the way.
Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.
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