Radio legend Howard Stern urged Ellen DeGeneres to cut her cutesy image and “just be a prick” following allegations that she oversaw a toxic work environment on the Ellen DeGeneres Show.
Stern made the comments after an investigation by BuzzFeed News claimed employees of the show had been subject to a toxic work environment of racism, sexual harassment, and bullying. Some employees even accused DeGeneres of overseeing such an environment, damaging her friendly image.
Speaking on his Monday morning SiriusXM program, Stern suggested DeGeneres should embrace a new, nastier image. “You know what I’d do if I was Ellen?” he said. “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.”
The pair have a contentious history with one another. In 2010, Stern launched a foul-mouthed rant against DeGeneres following reports that she had to quit her role on American Idol judge amid speculation Stern would be joining the show. (He later became a judge on America’s Got Talent).
“Ellen DeGeneres is such a jerk,” Stern said at the time. “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.”
The pair buried the hatchet in 2012 after Stern defended her against the American Family Association, who had threatened to boycott JCPenney after they made their spokesperson because of her sexuality. Last year, Stern appeared on her show to “remarry” his wife Beth live on air.
After issuing a public apology to her employees, the Ellen DeGeneres Show continues to air. However, the show has seen its ratings fall to an all-time low, reporting a 29 percent decline compared with this time last year.