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May 26, 2024

Comedian Jo Koy Faces Backlash for Controversial Jokes at Golden Globes

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Jan 10, 2024

Jo Koy, who hosted the 2024 Golden Globes, is facing criticism for several jokes he made during the opening monologue that fell flat with the audience and sparked backlash online.

Opening Monologue Bombs with Both Audience and Critics

Koy kicked off the awards show with a comedy routine that took aim at various celebrities in attendance. However, several of his jokes were met with silence or groans from the crowd:

  • A joke implying Taylor Swift dates a lot of NFL players was poorly received and showed Swift looking annoyed. Selena Gomez also appeared uncomfortable.
  • A joke about Barbie starring Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling drew criticism for making light of claims the movie promotes negative body image.
  • A joke about Helen Mirren and Harrison Ford’s age difference also bombed with the audience.

Critics condemned Koy’s monologue as “reductive,” “sexist,” and “a near total disaster” that played into ethnic stereotypes:

"Koy's monologue was about as bad at is gets for awards show openers."
- Fox News

Meanwhile, comedian Michael Che suggested comedians should boycott hosting awards shows in solidarity.

Koy Blames Writers, Defends Intent of Jokes

Facing widespread criticism, Koy later passes the blame onto his team of writers:

"Don't blame me, blame the writers!"
- Jo Koy

He also defended the intent of his jokes, saying he was just trying to have a little fun with celebs who were “in on it.”

Other comedians like Kevin Hart and Whoopi Goldberg showed support for Koy, noting award show gigs are a tough room for comics.

"I warned you all not to do these damn awards shows." - Kevin Hart tweeted to Koy

However, Koy’s deflection of responsibility and defense of the material failed to quell criticism in the days following.

Swift’s Reaction Goes Viral, Sparks Debate

Taylor Swift’s visible annoyance with Koy’s NFL joke took on a life of its own online. Footage and memes of her viral side-eye reaction made the rounds on social media.

Many felt Swift was justified in showing her displeasure with the sexist joke. Others argued her reaction was an overreaction that drew unnecessary attention.

"Taylor's reaction created distraction from the awards themselves." 
- Megyn Kelly

Debate continues around whether Swift’s response was a power move that called out sexism or if she should have rolled with the punch.

Backlash Threatens Koy’s Career, Golden Globes Brand

The widespread criticism places greater scrutiny on Jo Koy’s brand of comedy moving forward. Specifically regarding racial stereotypes and gender sensitivity:

Koy's humor "plays right into tired Asian stereotypes for white audiences."  
- The Guardian

Meanwhile, many feel the controversy threatens the relevance of the Golden Globes itself. The scandal follows previous diversity issues around the voting body:

"Another disaster hands the Globes an image problem." 
- The Atlantic

There are calls for hosts and producers to better vet monologues going forward to prevent PR crises.

Others suggest Koy shouldn’t be canceled over bad jokes, noting his commitment to increasing Filipino representation in Hollywood.

The saga promises to have enduring effects on Koy’s comedy career and future Golden Globes broadcasts grappling with identity issues in Hollywood.

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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