Things got heated on the March 10 episode of the talk show where co-host Sheryl Underwood accused Osbourne of giving "validation" to "racist" views of Piers Morgan.
Sharon Osbourne had been a part of The Talk for all of its 11 seasons but after a heated discussion on the March 10 episode of the show, the 68-year-old decided to exit the show. Osbourne had been defending her friend Piers Morgan against claims of his coverage of Meghan Markle which many have felt had racist undertones. As Osbourne continued to defend Morgan, co-host Sheryl Underwood accused Osbourne of giving "validation" to "racist" views.
. @piersmorgan I am with you. I stand by you. People forget that you’re paid for your opinion and that you’re just speaking your truth.— Sharon Osbourne (@MrsSOsbourne) March 9, 2021
“Sharon Osbourne has decided to leave The Talk,'” CBS said in a statement, reports Variety. “The events of the March 10 broadcast were upsetting to everyone involved, including the audience watching at home. As part of our review, we concluded that Sharon’s behavior toward her co-hosts during the March 10 episode did not align with our values for a respectful workplace. We also did not find any evidence that CBS executives orchestrated the discussion or blindsided any of the hosts. At the same time, we acknowledge the Network and Studio teams, as well as the showrunners, are accountable for what happened during that broadcast as it was clear the co-hosts were not properly prepared by the staff for a complex and sensitive discussion involving race. During this week’s hiatus, we are coordinating workshops, listening sessions and training about equity, inclusion and cultural awareness for the hosts, producers and crew. Going forward, we are identifying plans to enhance the producing staff and producing procedures to better serve the hosts, the production and, ultimately, our viewers."
According to PEOPLE, on that particular episode, Osbourne told Underwood to "educate" her and warned her not to cry during the episode. Osbourne later apologized for her "panicked" defense of Morgan. Osbourne put forth the argument that Morgan was just expressing his opinion and that maybe he just did not like Meghan Markle and questioned why that had to be a "racist view". Since the initial confrontation, Underwood and Osbourne have not spoken, the latter said on her podcast. She also said that Osbourne has not yet directly apologized to her. Osbourne has however put out a public apology and admitted that she let her fear of being branded a racist take over and is open to learning.
In a three-part series on her podcast titled Sharon Walks Away, Underwood felt that the controversy was inevitable. "Sometimes in life, something happens and you go, 'Gosh, if I just would've...' There's nothing I could have 'just would've' — this was going to happen, out of my control," she said. "Sometimes you don't want to know what you know, you don't want to feel and hear what you feel and hear, don't want to accept what you have to accept." She revealed that the two co-hosts haven't spoken since the discussion. Despite it all, Underwood told her podcast co-hosts that she still has positive feelings towards Osbourne and her family. "I still love the Osbournes, from what I've known of them," she said. "I don't know anything other than what I've experienced with them, and this thing that has happened is disappointing to me. And maybe people don't want to hear me say, 'I still love the Osbournes.' I'm not saying I liked being treated the way I was treated," she added. "I'm very disappointed. And I'm just trying to navigate my feelings about that because it was a trauma."
Sheryl Underwood has weighed in after Sharon Osbourne's exit from 'The Talk' following their heated on-air discussion. https://t.co/pDkMbP1TaO— Entertainment Weekly (@EW) April 7, 2021
Osbourne has previously been accused of using racist language to describe one of her former colleagues on the show. Journalist Yashar Ali published a report where he alleged that Osbourne had previously referred to certain co-hosts using racist and offensive terms. Ali also cited multiple sources, including former co-host Leah Remini who confirmed that Osbourne often called Julie Chen — who appeared on The Talk from 2010 to 2018, and who is Chinese American — “wonton” and “slanty eyes.” Ali's 11 sources also allege that Osbourne called her former executive producer and co-host Sara Gilbert, who is homosexual, “p*ssy licker” and “fish eater.”
The report noted that Osburne has been supporting Piers Morgan, someone who accused the Duchess of Sussex of lying about having suicidal thoughts, and he also questioned her accounts of racism within the royal family. Osbourne’s publicist Howard Bragman responded in a statement that "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."
1. Exclusive: Sharon Osbourne, co-host of the CBS daytime panel show “The Talk,” would frequently refer to then-co-host Julie Chen, who is Chinese American, as “wonton” and “slanty eyes,” according to multiple sources. https://t.co/6A4DrRnSVx— Yashar Ali 🐘 (@yashar) March 16, 2021
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Jason Merritt