Over the past 13 years, Wendy Williams has proven herself to be a stalwart success in the world of daytime talk shows, although her reputation isn't quite what it used to be, largely due to questionable segments and awkward moments becoming more and more of a regular occurrence. Case in point: Williams took the most bizarre and uncomfortable route possible in addressing the recent death of 19-year-old TikTok star Swavy, who was shot on Monday and later died in the hospital. Rather than approaching the tragic topic directly, Williams took a weirdly disturbing scenic route that drew quite a lot of negative feedback on social media.
Before diving into the responses to the segment, which range from baffled to insulted to satirical, one simply has to see it all play out in real time, so that one can wonder exactly how Wendy Williams felt this was an appropriate discussion to have about a murdered Internet star, and so soon after she faced such scrutiny for wishing death to Britney Spears' parents on live television over the controversial conservatorship.
Arguably, not a single moment in that clip is 100% understandable and defendable. From the way Wendy Williams starts off by polling the audience to see who knows him, to the way she arbitrarily shaded Instagram while also boasting about her TikTok ignorance, to the way she announced his death immediately after the audience finished laughing, to the way she repeated that he was dead. It's all so very cringe-worthy, and serves as a reminder that she did something similarly awkward when revealing that her own mother had died last year. It somehow makes me yearn for more carefree moments of Williams farting and burping at the same time, or that other time when Williams suspiciously denied that she farted.
In any case, that Wendy Williams Show segment struck a chord with people on Twitter, and all the reactions were had, with some going for purely sincere disapproval:
That comment in particular sparked other radio hosts to say Wendy Williams' handling of that news (and other controversial bits) is not representative of the industry as a whole. And in the same mostly sincere vein, many on social media called for studio and network execs to take a second to rethink the decision to allow her show to go on, as well as shading people who still openly love and support Williams and her work.
For all the truly disgusted and humorless opinions that are flying around Twitter, there were definitely a lot of people who took a more darkly sarcastic tone in pointing out Wendy Williams' foibles, as it went with this tweet.
Wendy Williams still the undisputed queen of the type of television they use in a horror/sci-fi movie to communicate that the world is a dystopian nightmare
Or those who offered their take on how Wendy Williams would handle breaking news about other headline-making deaths.
Others were more fond of pulling out oft-used GIFs and videos to share their negative-skewing opinions about Wendy Williams.
The hype train for cancelling Wendy Williams' series had only just slowed down a little following another major clapback situation involving actress Tabitha Brown, whose positive post about her husband's retirement from the LAPD drew skepticism from Williams, who compared their situation to her problematic marriage with ex-husband and ex-EP Kevin Hunter. Brown released quite the eloquent response video, too, which fans could not stop celebrating.
While it's likely that nothing detrimental will happen with Wendy Williams' career due to her ill-conceived approach to announcing Swavy's death, it's just as likely that this won't be the last time the host gets people riled up over one thing or 20 others. Maybe if she got her creepy wax figure to stand in as host for a few episodes, the backlash would subside.