‘The Talk’ on Hiatus After Sharon Osbourne Defends Piers Morgan
Update (March 16): CBS has extended its hiatus for the show until March 23 following new reports regarding offensive comments Osbourne made in the past. See more details below.
The Talk has been placed on a brief hiatus following a heated exchange between hosts Sharon Osbourne and Sheryl Underwood. Osbourne’s recent support for Piers Morgan set the stage for the argument, with Underwood claiming Osbourne was defending racism by sticking up for the former Good Morning Britain anchor.
Morgan parted ways with Good Morning Britain after criticizing Megan Markle’s recent interview with Oprah, where Markle claimed she encountered racist behavior from the Royal Family. Morgan publicly shared his disbelief of Markle’s claims, which reportedly led to over 41,000 complaints from Good Morning Britain viewers.
“Piers Morgan I am with you. I stand by you,” Sharon Osbourne tweeted on March 9. “People forget that you’re paid for your opinion and that you’re just speaking your truth.”
During a segment on The Talk, Underwood confronted Osbourne about her tweet. "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? Am I saying it right?"
Osbourne replied, "Educate me, tell me when you have heard him say racist things? I very much feel like I'm 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? How can I be racist about anybody or anything in my life? And don't try and cry, because if anyone should be crying, it should be me." [via The Hollywood Reporter]
Osbourne apologized for her reaction to Underwood’s comments with a statement shared to social media:
However, former Talk host Holly Robinson Peete went on the offensive against Osbourne, claiming the Ozzfest creator said she was “too ghetto” for The Talk:
Sharon denied the accusation by posting an email from Peete along with a statement:
CBS is now investigating the claims made against Sharon Osbourne. "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," network reps stated.
On March 16, the network revealed that it would extend its hiatus until March 23 following new reports that Osbourne had committed more wrongdoings on set.
The latest claims were compiled by journalist Yashar Ali in a post on Substack, which state that Osbourne had referred to co-host Julie Chen as "wonton" and "slanty eyes" before. Additionally, she reportedly called a former host and executive producer, Sara Gilbert, a "pussy licker" and "fish eater" for being a lesbian.
The Substack included a statement from Osbourne's publicist, Howard Bragman.
The only thing worse than a disgruntled former employee is a disgruntled former talk show host. For 11 years Sharon has been kind, collegial and friendly with her hosts as evidenced by throwing them parties, inviting them to her home in the UK and other gestures of kindness too many to name. Sharon is disappointed but unfazed and hardly surprised by the lies, the recasting of history and the bitterness coming out at this moment. She will survive this, as she always has and her heart will remain open and good, because she refuses to let others take her down. She thanks her family, friends and fans for standing by her and knowing her true nature.