There’s Even More Evidence That Ellen DeGeneres & Her Show Are Toxic

UPDATE: Back in March, we went through a viral Twitter thread, in which dozens of people shared their negative experiences with Ellen DeGeneres. Some of them were funny, some of them were disturbing, but they all backed up long-simmering rumors that the Kindness Queen might not actually be all that nice. Not long after that thread, Ellen was criticized for how her staff was being treated during the pandemic, and this week, BuzzFeed News published a searing report detailing the “toxic work culture” at Ellen, with numerous current and former employees claiming they “faced racism, fear, and intimidation” during their time at the show.

One former employee, a Black woman, told BuzzFeed that she repeatedly “experienced racist comments, actions, and ‘microaggressions'” during her time at the show. Once, a “senior-level producer” told her and another Black employee with a similar hairstyle, “I hope we don’t get you confused.” At one point, she was labeled the “PC police” by the show’s writing staff for asking that they avoid using certain problematic phrases in segments. She says that she wasn’t taken seriously when she brought these and other issues to her boss, and eventually she was reprimanded for “looking resentful and angry” by raising concerns. After that day, she chose not to return to the show, and hasn’t worked in entertainment since.

Multiple employees quoted in the new report have stories about being fired after taking necessary medical leave. One employee recalled that during their time at the show, they took a month-long medical leave after a suicide attempt. Upon returning to work, they were informed their role was “being eliminated.” The employee told BuzzFeed News, “You’d think that if someone just tried to kill themselves, you don’t want to add any more stress to their lives.” Another former employee said they were fired suddenly after, in a one-year period, they needed to take a three-week medical leave after a car accident, and a few days off to attend funerals. They added that “Each request was a battle with supervisors and HR.” Both of these specific cases were corroborated by medical records and other employees. 

In a statement, the show’s executive producers (Ellen not included), said “Over the course of nearly two decades, 3,000 episodes, and employing over 1,000 staff members, we have strived to create an open, safe, and inclusive work environment. We are truly heartbroken and 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 that responsibility for these things falls completely on them, and vowed to action moving forward to correct problems in the workplace.

Ellen DeGeneres is also an executive producer on her show, but she has not made any statement about the allegations in the BuzzFeed News report.

Original Article: Right now, a lot of us are spending a lot of time on Twitter, and it can be a scary place. Between people posting their nudes out of sheer boredom and threads from doctors about how we’re probably all going to die, we all need a bright spot. Thankfully, this weekend brought us a viral Twitter thread that has absolutely nothing to do with coronavirus, and everything to do with Ellen DeGeneres maybe being evil.

If that sentence was jarring for you, I’m sorry, but it’s time that you know. While Ellen’s public persona is relentlessly joyful, stories about her tyrannical behavior have been bubbling under the surface for a while. I’ve alluded to this before, but on Friday, comedian Kevin T. Porter invited people to share “the most insane stories you’ve heard about Ellen being mean” in exchange for donations to the LA Food Bank. Ooh, we love a charitable moment that also gives us good gossip. Buckle up, because illusions will be shattered.

Kevin’s original tweet has over 1,000 responses, and while some of them are people complaining that this whole exercise is mean-spirited, many of the tweets make it seem like Ellen is the mean-spirited one here. (Also, we’re raising money for charity, so stop complaining.) Obviously, it’s difficult to know if each story is 100% true, but you know, where there’s smoke there’s fire, and this is a lot of f*cking smoke.

One of the most disturbing stories was about a woman returning from maternity leave. After working for Ellen for “over 5 years,” this woman claims she found a different job with more benefits after having her baby, but went back to Ellen after she “BEGGED” her to return. Then what happened? Ellen fired her after a week. Who knows what exactly went down here, but it definitely seems shady.

That’s not the only story about her allegedly screwing over a long-time employee. Someone pointed out that Karen Kilgariff, best known as the cohost of My Favorite Murder, was the head writer on Ellen’s show for years—until the historic writer’s strike of 2007. Allegedly, Ellen wanted Karen to cross the picket line and come back to work, but she refused. In response, this tweet claims that Ellen fired her, and the two have never spoken since. Ouch.

Another account came from someone who says she served Ellen and her wife Portia at brunch. According to the tweet, Ellen “wrote a letter to the owner & complained about chipped nail polish.” She says that she almost got fired because of this, which is just insane. I’m glad she also tagged the restaurant, because if she actually almost got fired for some chipped nails, that’s not okay. Just because Ellen is (allegedly) psycho doesn’t mean we all have to just live in her fantasy world.

One of my personal favorite Ellen stories that came out of this, though, is about her “sensitive nose.” According to this tweet, she’s super sensitive to smell, “so everyone must chew gum from a bowl outside her office before talking to her.” Okay, what? Maybe I don’t understand the sensitive nose life, but how close is Ellen standing when she’s having conversations with these people? I’ll never turn down a free piece of gum, but this sounds like a personal problem.

Writer and comedian Benjamin Siemon came armed with several bits of Ellen tea, also claiming that she likes to pick “someone different to really hate” every day. Reportedly, she always has a different target of choice, and then the next day she’ll move on to someone else. At the very least, this is textbook toxic boss behavior, and it’s easy to see why working for her could be a nightmare if this stuff is true.

There are many more entertaining responses, so you should check out the full thread if you have some time to kill while you’re “working  from home” today. Again, they may or may not be true, but I’ve laughed a lot either way.

On Sunday, Kevin T. Porter circled back with an update. While he said it’s tough to tell exactly which stories are true, he rounded for a final donation of $600 to the LA Food Bank. Great work, Kevin, and great work to everyone who shared these stories. Call me messed up, but this is the sh*t that warms my cold, dead heart.

So yeah, thinking about all the people Ellen DeGeneres may (allegedly) have yelled at is what’s getting me through this day of social distancing. If you have any personal stories about Ellen being a monster, feel free to comment or slide into my DMs, because I really need something to smile about. Until then, I’ll be watching old clips of Wendy Williams, my daytime talk show queen. Wendy is messy, but at least she owns it!

Images: David Crotty/Getty Images; kevintporter, missabsinthe, elpez3, chrislfarah, benjaminjs / Twitter

This Twitter Thread About One Guy’s Trip To Cabo Sounds Like A True Crime Documentary

There are certain wonders of the world that cannot be explained. Who built Stonehenge. Who was Jack The Ripper. Where is Cleopatra’s tomb. How is Twitter free. That last one I ask myself at least once a day, especially when I come across content that is too premium to not cost money. That happened last night when, during my usual Twitter scroll, I came across a thread from Andrew Kimmel detailing his recent trip to Mexico. After reading it, completely captivated, I immediately sent it to my friends, telling them it is the most interesting thing I’ve read on Twitter. I know that’s a bold claim, but I promise this thread will deliver.

The thread starts out like many disgruntled travel tweets, with Kimmel tweeting at American Airlines. “Ugh, here we go,” I said to myself. “Another angry rant at an airline because someone’s flight got delayed over circumstances beyond the airline’s control.” But that’s not what happened at all—instead of your run-of-the-mill “f*ck you American Airlines for canceling my flight due to severe blizzards” tweet, I got a full-on action movie.

Dear @AmericanAir,

After arriving back to LA from Indonesia, I was $275 EQDs under (yet 25K miles over) from maintaining status. You asked me to pay $1875 (?!) to keep status, so instead I booked a $400 rt ticket to Mexico for 24 hrs. Here’s how my fucking night went…

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) December 31, 2019

Okay, so I am not on any kind of status on any airline (except maybe “don’t give this girl any wine” status), so I could relate to approximately zero percent of this tweet. But I’m guessing the gist is this (rich people, feel free to correct me in the comments): in order to be able to keep some perks, Kimmel would have to spend $275 more dollars on a flight, or $1,875 real dollars. That is some ridiculous math, but sounds about right for airlines. So Andrew says “f*ck it” and buys a trip to Mexico so he can keep that sweet, sweet status.

Things start out pretty good so far.

I managed to find a cheap hotel room and rented a car for $35. I went out for a nice dinner and met a family who surprised me and paid for my bill (perhaps I should eat alone more often!). I then decided to hit some bars. And this is where my 24 hour mileage run got interesting.

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) December 31, 2019

And then things go from “Instagram highlights” to First 48 Hours episode.

At the last bar of the evening, I was presented with a bill for over $300. I had two beers. The bar manager said I needed to pay or he’d call the police. I give him my credit card and it was declined due to fraud protection, which I found out today as my phone had died earlier.

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) December 31, 2019

First of all, never go to a bar with a dead phone. Second of all, that beer had better be fermented with liquid cold and come with a side of Tyler Cameron if they’re going to charge $150 for ONE. (Yes, yes, I know it’s plain extortion, just go with me on the joke here.) Then, things get crazier.

Of course the police were working with the bar manager w/ the tourist swindle, so the police handcuff me as the bar manager steals my debit card and passport. I’m put into a police car and sit up front with two officers. We actually got along quite well as I applauded their con.

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) December 31, 2019

I actually can’t wait for the Scam Goddess podcast to cover this con.

The police bring me to a jail somewhere outside of Cabo. I asked if they could at least get my passport back. They laughed and said they’re locking me up for 30 minutes then letting me go. I’m placed in a cell with a guy from the UK who got into a fight.

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

So then the next tweet is about how this guy from the UK is lamenting from Mexican jail about how his wife is going to kill him. It’s not super necessary to the plot, but it does add some character.

Three hours goes by. “Capitan? Capitan?” I shout through the bars. It’s now daytime and my cell mate tells me he’s gotta take a shit, but there’s no toilet paper. There is a blanket covering the window, so I suggest he take it off and use that. And he did.

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

Then, Kimmel takes a nap while his cellmate’s wife posts his bail.

I doze off. I’m awoken several hours later by an officer. “Your friend pay bail.” What the fuck? Im given my belongings and shoved outside where a woman from Kenya was waiting for me. “I heard what happened when you came in, so I figured you could use some help.”

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

Obligatory “thanks, kind stranger!”

I thank her over & over and ask what she was arrested for. “I ordered an Uber and the driver said I didn’t pay.” Fuck Cabo. So now the two of us start walking to nowhere and spot a guy chilling in his car. We ask for directions back to the marina and he instead offers us a ride.

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

The Cabo tourism department (do they have one?) is probably sweating right now.

Imagine if a Mexican & a Kenyan came up to a car in the US & asked for directions. Anyways, we get to the marina & the Kenyan offers the guy cash… he refuses. It’s now 2:00 & my flight leave at 3:26. The Kenyan joins me to the airport, but unfortunately her flight was at 8:30am

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

I have no fucking clue what I’m going to do. I call passport control in the States to report a stolen passport. They tell me to call the local embassy. I call and they’re closed. I ask my new friend to wait in the car at the airport as I run to the airline desk. It’s now 3:00pm.

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

Losing my passport is one of my biggest nightmares, so I can only imagine how Kimmel feels.

I tell the airline agent what happened and ask if there is anything I can do to get home. I show her my Real ID (what a stupid fucking name) and a photo of my passport. She gets on the line with CBP and somehow arranges for me to jump on the last flight out without a passport.

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

So, my driver’s license expires in 2020, so I spent no less than a few hours during Christmas discussing with my family all the different types of IDs and what each one does. And isn’t the point of the Real ID so that you can go to Canada and Mexico without a passport? Or is that the enhanced one? F*ck, they make this sh*t way too complicated.

I’m directed to the immigration desk as the airport and advised I need to purchase a new immigration form for $35. “All I have is my credit card,” I tell them. I’m then redirected to another desk that accepts credit card payments. “We’ll need your passport to process, sir.”

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

LOLLLLL what kind of insane episode of the Twilight Zone is this? I would have probably snapped and ended up back in a Mexican jail at this point.

I run back to my friend in the rental car, tell her I can make the last flight out, but I needed more money 🤦‍♂️ At this point, I’m losing my shit over just about everything, and she grabs my hand, tells me it’ll be ok and then kisses me 😳 I kiss back. What the fuck is happening?

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

Okay, wait what? When did this go from “friends” to you’re now kissing outside an airport before running to make your flight? I know that this is a Twitter thread, but a little foreshadowing that there was sexual tension here would have helped.

“If you don’t make your flight, you can stay with me at my Airbnb,” my jail crush tells me. Fuck. What once was “get me out of Mexico” turned into, “well this could be interesting.” But of course I couldn’t. I came to Mexico for a goddamn mileage run & I’m getting that status ✈️

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

Alas, it was not meant to be. Kimmel made it home (but no word on whether he made it to his friend’s New Year’s party, since according to another tweet he landed in LA shortly after 1am).

So to sum it up, I was $275 short for status… was given an offer to maintain for $1875 (!?), took a $400 flight to spend 24hrs in Mexico after 20hrs travel the day before & ended up in a Mexican jail w/ no passport, a $350 bail bill, & an African crush. Happy new year everyone!

— Andrew Kimmel (@andrewkimmel) January 1, 2020

So now I’ve got about a million questions. Did he and his Kenya crush exchange numbers? Will they see each other again?? And is he ever going back to Mexico? Just kidding about that last one. But I really can’t wait until Netflix options this movie as a suspense drama/rom-com with Noah Centineo starring as Kimmel. This was seriously better than half the thrillers I’ve read this year.

The other amazing/terrible part of this? American Airlines responded to Kimmel’s first tweet…. completely missing the mark.

Reaching Executive Platinum status isn’t easy. For those who make it, the benefits are amazing! We’re happy you’ll make your goal!

— American Airlines (@AmericanAir) December 31, 2019

Yikes, read the room. Some intern at American Airlines is definitely getting fired, and I bet legit bars and hotels all over Cabo are going to be falling over themselves to offer Kimmel and his jail crush some free drinks and a place to stay. Not a bad ending to an otherwise traumatic experience!

I feel like the moral of this story is, if you’re going to book a cheap flight just to maintain your mileage status, fly domestic. Oh, and don’t go to a place called Urban Bar in Cabo San Lucas (with a name like that, though, it seems kind of obvious the place is a scam).

Images: JESHOOTS.COM / Unsplash; andrewkimmel / Twitter