On Monday’s installment of his SiriusXM show, Stern reacted to the flurry of troubling allegations about working conditions at “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” which is now undergoing an internal investigation.
Though DeGeneres responded to the news by apologizing to her staff in a widely circulated memo, Stern thinks she’d be better served by taking a different approach.
“You know what I’d do if I was Ellen? I would change my whole image,” he said. “I’d go on the air and be a son of a bitch.”
“People would come on,” he added, “and [I would] go, ‘Fuck you.’ Like, just be a prick.”
DeGeneres has yet to publicly respond to the suggestion. She and Stern, however, have been friendly for years.
Last year, she welcomed the shock jock to “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” for the first time, where they set tongues wagging by sharing a smooch. Later in the episode, however, Stern and his wife, Beth, renewed their wedding vows in an on-air ceremony.
Stern’s comments come almost a month after a July 16 BuzzFeed article featured accounts from 10 former “Ellen DeGeneres Show” staff members and one current employee who said they faced racism and intimidation while working on the daytime talk show.
A subsequent set of claims emerged in a second BuzzFeed story published July 30, in which the news outlet spoke to “dozens” of male and female “Ellen” employees who alleged sexual misconduct and assault involving several members of the show’s creative staff.
All of the sources cited in both BuzzFeed articles spoke on the condition of anonymity. But last week, Hedda Muskat, a former “Ellen” producer, and Tony Okungbowa, who worked on the show as DJ Tony from 2003 to 2006 and again from 2007 to 2013, went on the record to corroborate the accusations.
Meanwhile, People reported that DeGeneres was “crushed” by the claims and has committed to working closely with Warner Bros. TV to ensure “things are properly changed” ahead of her show’s Sept. 9 season premiere.
And after news of the initial allegations broke, “Ellen” executive producers Ed Glavin, Mary Connelly and Andy Lassner told HuffPost in a statement that they were “sorry to learn that even one person in our production family has had a negative experience.”
“It’s not who we are and not who we strive to be, and not the mission Ellen has set for us,” they said. “We take all of this very seriously and we realize, as many in the world are learning, that we need to do better, are committed to do better, and we will do better.”