James Corden is a British actor, comedian, and television host who has become a divisive public figure in recent years. While he has achieved significant success as the host of The Late Late Show on CBS since 2015, he has also faced growing criticism and backlash, particularly online.
Here is an in-depth look at some of the major reasons why James Corden has become such a polarizing celebrity figure.
His Style of Comedy and Personality Are Seen as Annoying or Arrogant
One of the most common criticisms of James Corden is that his style of comedy and personality comes across as annoying, smug, or arrogant to many people.
His Demeanor on Talk Shows and Interviews
On his talk show, some feel that Corden frequently interrupts or talks over his guests in a smug or self-centered way. He often injects himself into interviews or makes jokes rather than allowing his guests to speak. Some feel he tries too hard to be funny or charm guests with overly effusive praise. This rubs some people the wrong way.
His Acting Style and Characters
In acting roles, James Corden frequently plays characters that are boisterous, loud, or over-the-top. For example, his breakout stage and film role was as the loud, brash character Smithy in Gavin & Stacey. While this style brought him early success, some find it annoying or off-putting especially in roles where it seems inappropriate or excessive.
His Improv and Carpool Karaoke Style
Two of Corden’s popular segments on his talk show are improvised sketches, such as “Crosswalk the Musical,” and Carpool Karaoke. While many find these fun and entertaining, others feel Corden hams it up too much and makes the segments too much about himself rather than his guests or the music. His over-the-top singing and dancing grates on some viewers.
Perception He “Steals” Content or Jokes
Another common complaint about James Corden is the accusation that he has stolen jokes and content from others for his talk show segments.
Carpool Karaoke Origins
One of the biggest issues involves the viral Carpool Karaoke segment, which Corden adapted from a similar bit by comedian Late Late Show predecessor Craig Ferguson. While not a direct copy, some feel Corden took the premise without properly crediting Ferguson as inspiration.
Reddit Controversy and Apology
In 2020, Corden was accused of stealing jokes for his talk show from various Reddit threads without credit. He ended up issuing an apology on Twitter after extensive criticism. While Corden claimed it was inadvertent, many felt he was not truthful about the plagiarism accusations.
Corden has also been accused of lifting concepts for some of his show’s popular comedy skits from others. For instance, his “Spill Your Guts or Fill Your Guts” was noted as quite similar to a previous skit by the show Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.
Dislike of His Acting Roles Outside Talk Show
Another source of criticism towards James Corden relates to a feeling that he has been overexposed or assigned roles better suited to other actors.
Movie Musical Roles
In movie musicals like Into the Woods and Cats, Corden took on major singing roles despite not being known as a traditional musical/Broadway performer. Especially in Cats, his casting was seen as inappropriate by some fans of musical theatre.
The Prom Role Controversy
In the Netflix movie The Prom, Corden played a gay character. This sparked some controversy and backlash from LGBTQ advocates who felt an openly gay actor should have been cast instead of Corden. Corden’s acting choices in the role were also criticized by some.
TV Show Appearances
Corden has also popped up frequently as a guest or minor character on various TV comedies such as Friends, The Wrong Mans, and Modern Family. Some feel he gets shoehorned into too many shows and hogs screen time due to his talk show status.
Perceptions He Is Two-Faced or Phony
There is a also a perception among some that James Corden does not show his true personality on camera and is two-faced or phony.
Nice on Camera, Rude off Camera
There are stories of Corden being rude, entitled or harsh towards production staff and others when the cameras are off. However, he comes across as congenial and nice when the audience is watching. This apparent split has fueled more negative opinions of him.
Social Media Persona
On social media like Twitter, Corden often posts positive vibes or upbeat commentary. But some feel this is a manufactured persona and he has shown less savory aspects of his real personality during controversies. There is a sense he is phony or inauthentic.
PR Damage Control
Some feel Corden’s apologies, such as his statement on the Reddit controversy, were more about damage control than sincerity. The gap between his public and perceived private persona adds to the impression among detractors that he is disingenuous or two-faced.
He Represents What Some Dislike About Talk Show Hosts
There are also some people who simply dislike James Corden as a representation of the modern American late night talk show format itself.
His Demeanor as a Host
Some find Corden’s demeanor as a host – loud, effusive, bursting with energy – to be indicative of the tiring or phony nature of current U.S. talk show hosts. They prefer a more relaxed and genuine tone.
Talk Show Format Fatigue
There is also a sense of over-saturation with the talk show format among some viewers. After decades of hosts like Jay Leno dominating late night TV, there is a fatigue with the whole concept. Corden represents this ongoing dominance of the tired talk show model for some critics.
Perception He Was Forced Upon America
Especially after Corden took over The Late Late Show fairly quickly after his move to the U.S., there was a feeling among some that he had the talk show host role overly foisted upon American audiences. The swiftness of his prominence on U.S. television rubbed certain viewers the wrong way.
Controversies and “Cancellation” Attempts
Like many polarizing celebrities, James Corden has faced repeated calls on social media to be “cancelled” or fired from his talk show host duties. Controversies have fueled these kinds of reactions.
Stories of Corden being banned from restaurants like Balthazar in New York for rude behavior added fire to online campaigns urging CBS to fire him from The Late Late Show. Critics cited this unacceptable conduct as warranting cancellation.
Petition to Ban Carpool Karaoke
A petition on Change.org calling for CBS to discontinue Corden’s Carpool Karaoke segment garnered over 30,000 signatures. However, the network has stood by Corden through various controversies so far.
Trending Hashtags Like #CancelCorden
On multiple occasions, hashtags like #CancelCorden, #FireCorden and #BoycottCorden have trended on Twitter and TikTok. However, these efforts have not led to any concrete actions against Corden yet beyond drawing more attention to why some despise him.
He is Seen as Overrated or Undeserving of Success
Underlying much of the James Corden backlash is a feeling among detractors that he has become overexposed, overrated and simply does not deserve the astronomical success he has achieved in America.
Swift Rise Stirs Resentment
Corden had some moderate success in British television but was far from a household name. His rapid rise to prominence as a top talk show host in the U.S. struck some as undeserved or heavily aided by dubious factors like his connections or being British.
Perception He is Not That Talented
Also fueling the sentiment Corden is overrated is a perception among critics that he lacks exceptional comedic or performing talent. For those who find him annoying or smarmy, it is galling to see him achieve such heights on American television.
Industry Cronyism Critiques
Some believe figures like James Corden get outsized opportunities in Hollywood and television due to unfair industry cronyism or friendship circles, shutting out equally or more talented performers. The media seeks to prop up mediocre stars like Corden in this view.
He is Seen as Symbol of Larger Problems
Critics of James Corden also often point to him as a symbol for broader perceived issues in the entertainment world and celebrity culture.
Representing White Male Privilege
Corden’s rise is seen by some as another instance of the entertainment business favoring white men. Especially after roles like The Prom or hosting a show like Carpool Karaoke were seen as opportunities that could have elevated underrepresented groups.
Example of Problematic Allyship
After playing gay characters and professing support of LGBTQ communities, Corden was criticized for not following through as a genuine ally and advocate. He became for some an example of superficial Hollywood wokeness or allyship.
Celebrity Culture Obsession
The over-the-top backlash itself represents resentment of perceived over-importance of celebrities like Corden in culture. The media spotlight on Corden symbolizes for critics how celebrity gossip and obsession drives conversation.
Conclusion: Polarizing Persona Reflects Broader Culture Wars
James Corden has become such a divisive celebrity due to a mixture of factors: an persona and demeanor many find smug or annoying, accusations of unoriginality, a sense of undeserved superstardom, and representing “Hollywood” excess and obsession.
The angry reactions to Corden also reflect societal divides and resentment towards perceived media elites. Corden is the latest lightning rod for these feelings of celebrity culture disillusionment. However, the visceral reactions reveal deeper cultural and political rifts.
Ultimately, figuring out exactly why James Corden is so hated reveals more about contemporary society and a deeply divided social media discourse than about Corden himself. The “love him or hate him” reactions symbolize today’s hyper-polarized takes on celebrities and entertainment.
FAQs About Why People Hate James Corden
What was the main controversy around Corden and Carpool Karaoke?
Many feel Corden copied the Carpool Karaoke segment from similar bits done previously by late night host Craig Ferguson, without giving proper credit. This perceived stealing of content added to criticism of Corden.
What restaurant banned James Corden and why?
Corden was reportedly briefly banned from the famous New York restaurant Balthazar after its owner described him as yelling and abusive to servers over a meal. This stoked more online backlash.
What late night talk show does James Corden host?
Corden has hosted The Late Late Show on CBS since 2015 after moving from Britain to the United States. He took over hosting duties from previous Late Late Show host Craig Ferguson.
Why was his role in The Prom controversial?
Some in the LGBTQ community criticized Corden, a straight actor, for taking on a major gay character role in The Prom instead of having an openly gay actor cast. This added to impressions that Corden was not an ally.
What is an example of Corden possibly stealing a comedy sketch idea?
Corden’s popular “Spill Your Guts or Fill Your Guts” segment has been criticized for closely resembling a previous “Truth or Truth” bit by Jimmy Fallon on Late Night. This fed accusations of Corden copying others.