This Is Why "The Talk" Just Abruptly Went on a Hiatus
Sharon Osbourne's comments about Piers Morgan have led to an internal review.
The hosts of daytime chat show The Talk aren't doing any talking on our TV screens right now. Following a heated discussion on one of last week's episodes, The Talk has gone on hiatus. The decision came following a conversation between hosts Sharon Osbourne and Sheryl Underwood about TV host Piers Morgan's comments on Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex.
When Oprah Winfrey's interview with Meghan and her husband Prince Harry aired on Sunday, Mar. 7, it became a huge topic of conversation. The interview brought in a whopping 17 million viewers, who watched as Harry and Meghan opened up more than they ever had before about their experience in the British royal family and the British tabloid media.
So, of course, the interview was also discussed on The Talk throughout the week that followed. But, in the Mar. 10 episode, the conversation became specifically about Morgan's disparaging comments about Meghan, which is where things took a turn.
Read on to find out what Osbourne and Underwood had to say on The Talk, and find out why this led the show to take a hiatus. And for more on Meghan and Harry's interview, check out Meghan Markle Just Said This Is Her One Regret About Royal Life.
First, here's why the co-hosts were discussing Morgan in the first place.
Morgan, who was until recently a host of the British morning show Good Morning Britain, has long been outspoken about his issues with Meghan. So, after the interview with Winfrey aired, of course, he had something more to say.
In the interview, Meghan talked about the state of her mental health as a new member of the royal family and said that, at times, she didn't want to be live anymore. In response, Morgan said on Good Morning Britain, "I don't believe a word she says, Meghan Markle. I wouldn't believe it if she read me a weather report and that fact that she fired up this onslaught against our royal family, I think is contemptible."
Meghan sent a letter of complaint to the show's network, ITV, the BBC reports. In the letter she "raised concerns about how Piers Morgan's words affect the issue of mental health and what it might do to others…," according to Chris Ship, the royal editor of ITV News. The BBC also reports that ITV received 41,000 complaints from viewers in total. It was soon announced that Morgan would be leaving Good Morning Britain. He has said he stands by his comments.
For more on the controversial anchor, check out Piers Morgan Was Banned From This Celebrity's Talk Show.
Osbourne lent her support to Morgan on Twitter.
On Mar. 9, Osbourne tweeted in support of her friend Morgan. "@piersmorgan I am with you," she wrote. "I stand by you. People forget that you're paid for your opinion and that you're just speaking your truth."
Osbourne also appeared on a segment on BBC News, during which she said she didn't know what Morgan has against Meghan personally, and addressed the idea that his repeated comments on Meghan are racially motivated. "He has a right to his opinion, that's what he gets paid for," Osbourne said. "The thing is, he's not racist in the slightest … Neither am I."
Read more about the situation in The Comment That Made Piers Morgan Storm Off His Show Before Quitting.
The next day, Underwood challenged Osbourne's position on The Talk.
On the Mar. 10 episode of The Talk, Osbourne discussed her feelings about Morgan and again said that she believes that he has the right to say whatever he wants. In response, Underwood said, "What would you say to people who may feel that while you're standing by your friend, it appears you gave validation or safe haven to something that he has uttered that is racist, even if you don't agree?"
Osbourne got noticeably emotional and said she felt like she was "about to be put in the electric chair because I have a friend, who many people think is a racist, so that makes me a racist?" She went on to say that Underwood needed to "educate" her.
"I will ask you again Sheryl, I've been asking you during the break and I'm asking you again, and don't try and cry cause if anyone should be crying it should be me," Osbourne said. "Educate me! Tell me when you have heard him say racist things."
Underwood replied that "it is not the exact words of racism, it's the implication and the reaction to it." She continued, "To not want to address that because [Meghan] is a Black woman, and to try to dismiss it or to make it seem less than what it is that's what makes it racist." Underwood also noted that she considers Osbourne a friend and was not accusing her of being racist.
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The whole show is now under review.
In the wake of that conversation and viewer response to it, the show is under an internal review by CBS. As reported by E! News, CBS said in a statement, "We are committed to a diverse, inclusive and respectful workplace. All matters related to the Wednesday episode of The Talk are currently under internal review."
E! News also reported that, according to an anonymous source, Osbourne's words made some of the show's staff uncomfortable. "Several employees reached out to HR after Wednesday's show because of the way Sharon Osbourne handled the conversation," the source said. "Sharon's defense of Piers Morgan felt like a triggering moment and it was very difficult for many of the staff to watch."
For another uncomfortable daytime incident, This Was the Worst Guest "The View" Ever Had, Former Host Says.
Osbourne has apologized, but is also facing another accusation.
On Mar. 12, Osbourne released a lengthy statement on Twitter in which she apologized "to anyone of color that I offended and/or to anyone that feels confused or let down by what I said." She added, "I panicked, felt blindsided, got defensive & allowed my fear & horror of being accused of being racist take over."
But now, Osbourne is facing another claim related to her hosting position on The Talk. Former co-host Holly Robinson Peete tweeted on Mar. 12, "I'm old enough to remember when Sharon complained that I was too 'ghetto' for #theTalk…then I was gone. I bring this up now bc I was mortified watching the disrespectful condescending tone she took w/her co host who remained calm & respectful because…she HAD to." This is a claim that had been brought up before, by another former co-host, Leah Remini, who said that Osbourne used that word to describe both her and Peete.
In response, Osbourne tweeted a screenshot of an email she says Peete sent her after she left the show. Osbourne also posted, "Never in my life did I utter the words that Holly was 'too ghetto' to be on the Talk, as well as not having her fired."
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