It’s probably safe to say that by now, just about everyone and their dog has heard the rumor that Ellen DeGeneres fakes the nice for TV while being a nightmare employer behind the scenes. I say “employer” specifically, because there are still some rich famous people out there who don’t seem to understand that someone could be both a good friend and a terrible boss. And of course, there are some people who are happy to stick their fingers in their ears and say, “Hashtag I stand by Ellennnnnnn.” But lots of people have read the allegations from past and present Ellen employees, and all the first-person stories on social media.
I don’t know what kind of reputation damage control Ellen has been doing to prepare for her return to TV this fall – maybe taking some online classes with the Care Bears or practicing how to hold a smile for 60 minutes. Howard Stern has decided to offer up a little advice to Ellen. And Howard thinks Ellen should just scrap the whole nice act and lean into her alleged reputation as an asshole.
On his SiriusXM show yesterday, Howard talked about the workplace toxicity at Ellen, and joked that the only person at the Howard Stern Show who has seen any workplace abuse is himself. Then he thought about what he might do if he were in Ellen’s shoes. You know, besides dancing through the audience to a remix of “Happy.” via Page Six:
“You know what I’d do if I was Ellen? I would change my whole image. I’d go on the air and be a son of a bitch…people would come on and [I would] go, ‘Fuck you.’ Just be a prick. So you think I’m a prick? I’m going to show you exactly.”
T be fair, anyone who has watched Ellen absolutely terrorize contestants on Ellen’s Game of Games knows that she has sort of already dipped her toe in that pond.
Pink News points out that this isn’t the first time Howard has dragged Ellen for being not-nice. During an episode of the Howard Stern Show in 2010, Howard had this to say of Ellen:
“Ellen DeGeneres is such a jerk. She’s such a foul piece of garbage, people who work with her know…she’s a tyrant ogre, this whole nice girl image is a lot of horseshit fakery – she’s miserable, and she is a miserable woman.”
I kind of wish he’d added, “Ellen is certainly Not Wack Pack Material,” but it sounds like he was too fired up at the time to make a joke.
Howard Stern’s strategy to go full-jerk might work for some, but Ellen? Ellen’s audience isn’t really tuning in for that. Plus, her show is on in the middle of the afternoon. Her show breaks for commercials about diabetic testing supplies and personal injury lawyers. I don’t know if she can get away with saying “crap,” let alone a hard-F “fuck.” And besides, even if she tried it, a complete image overhaul would surely plummet Ellen’s ratings into the ground. Because daytime TV already has a smug, rich blue-eyed asshole that makes the people at home utter, “Oh wow, what an asshole,” and his name is Dr. Phil.