Jimmy Kimmel is an American television host, comedian, writer and producer. He is best known as the host of ABC’s late-night talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live! which he has hosted since 2003.
While Kimmel has enjoyed a successful career in entertainment, he has also faced criticism and backlash from some who accuse him of being mean-spirited, unethical, insensitive and offensive. Kimmel’s controversial stunts, political commentary and hosting choices have led some viewers to develop a strong dislike for the late-night host.
Reasons Why People Hate Jimmy Kimmel
He Can Be Mean-Spirited and Offensive
One of the top reasons why Jimmy Kimmel has haters is because some find him to be mean-spirited and offensive at times. Here are some examples:
- Mocking foreign accents – Kimmel has been accused of mocking foreign accents like Chinese and Hispanic accents which some have deemed racist and xenophobic.
- Fat-shaming – Kimmel has fat-shamed celebrities during interview segments like calling Val Kilmer “fat” repeatedly to his face. Some find this bullying.
- Insensitive comedy – Some of Kimmel’s comedy bits and impersonations have been called out for making light of serious issues like alcoholism and disability.
- Crank prank calls – Kimmel has made prank calls to real people that some feel go too far in mocking innocent individuals.
His Political Commentary Can Be Divisive
Jimmy Kimmel is very vocal about his political views and often includes political commentary and satire targeting conservative figures on his show. While some fans appreciate this, it has also alienated more conservative viewers.
- Kimmel has bashed Donald Trump, Fox News and Republican leaders like Mitch McConnell frequently. His liberal fanbase cheers these segments on while conservatives accuse him of being overly partisan on a comedy show.
- His politicized monologues calling for gun control after mass shootings rub some viewers the wrong way.
- His ‘ Celebrities Read Mean Tweets’ often mocks and insults conservative figures. Some feel he crosses the line.
He Has Been Involved in Some Controversies
Jimmy Kimmel has sparked some controversies over the years that have painted him in an unflattering light for some viewers:
- In 2013, he hosted a ‘twerking contest’ on the street that asked random women to twerk for prizes. It was criticized for being sexist objectification.
- In 2017, Kimmel had a feud with Fox News’ Sean Hannity that got very ugly and personal, leaving a bad taste.
- In 2019, an old clip of Kimmel in blackface impersonating basketball player Karl Malone surfaced, sparking debates about racism.
Some Dislike His Hosting Choices and Awards Show Stunts
As a major awards show host, Jimmy Kimmel has made some controversial hosting choices and stunts that have upset some viewers:
- At multiple Oscars, Kimmel has surprised unsuspecting tourists by having them interact with celebrities which some feel is mean-spirited mockery.
- His hosting jokes and gags during awards shows are sometimes deemed tasteless, like at the 2017 Oscars when he joked about Mahershala Ali’s name.
- Kimmel doesn’t shy away from political jabs and digs during supposedly non-political events like the Oscars which rubs some audiences the wrong way.
Do People Have Valid Reasons to Dislike Jimmy Kimmel?
The reasons for disliking Jimmy Kimmel mentioned above are subjective based on individual viewer perspectives and opinions. Here are some perspectives on both sides:
Yes, the Dislike is Justified
- Jimmy Kimmel frequently crosses the line from comedy into offensive territory. His segments mocking foreign accents, fat-shaming guests and crank calling real people to laugh at their expense is rightly seen as bullying by many.
- Late night comedy shows have a big platform and influence. Kimmel abuses this power to constantly bash conservative figures in a one-sided partisan way instead of making comedy that unites.
- Kimmel is a hypocrite who preaches politeness but engages in personal feuds and insults like with Sean Hannity. He is reaping the consequences of his own actions.
No, the Hate is Overblown
- Comedy is subjective. While Kimmel’s controversial bits may cross the line for some, that is the nature of late-night comedy which isn’t meant to be completely clean.
- Kimmel has apologized when necessary. The blackface clip was from decades ago and doesn’t represent his current persona and comedy.
- His political commentary reflects the majority liberal leanings of his audience. His job is to cater to his viewers, not conservative critics who aren’t watching him anyway.
- The Sean Hannity feud stayed within late night TV. It wasn’t any more vicious than other late night TV show host feuds. Kimmel has a right to defend himself.
Jimmy Kimmel’s Response to His Critics
Jimmy Kimmel is aware of his critics and detractors. Here are some of his responses:
- In 2018 he said: “I do find that this happens quite a bit. I’m a target for Republican and conservative outlets to write stories about how unfunny I am.”
- Regarding the Sean Hannity feud he said: “I will take Sean Hannity at his word that he was just having some fun with me, trying to get a laugh. And I will do the same by extending an invitation for Sean Hannity to appear as a guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live! And I promise no politics. No name calling. Just us talking about meatballs or something like that.”
- On political comedy he said: “I don’t really even consider myself a political comedian. I have strong political opinions, but I’m a comedian first. I never set out to make a political point with every show.”
So while Kimmel understands he has critics, he remains committed to his brand of comedy and believes people are overblowing the hatred against him.
Is Jimmy Kimmel’s Brand of Comedy Still Relevant?
Given the disapproval that Jimmy Kimmel’s comedy elicits from some, is his inflammatory style of late-night comedy becoming outdated? There are arguments on both sides:
Yes, His Comedy is Getting Stale
- In an era focused on social justice and inclusion, Kimmel’s bits mocking foreign accents and insensitive crank calls feel outdated.
- Late night TV ratings have been declining. Kimmel sadly tries to stay relevant through offensive stunts instead of truly innovating.
- There are less partisan options rising like John Oliver and Hasan Minhaj on streaming that offer fresher takes.
No, He Connects With His Audience
- Jimmy Kimmel remains very popular with his core demographic averaging 2-2.3 million viewers an episode. His comedy still connects with mainstream tastes.
- He has evolved with the times, discontinuing bits like the twerking contest that drew criticism.
- Not every late night host has to break new ground. Kimmel fills the traditional late night comedy niche well with his personality.
Jimmy Kimmel’s long run as a late night comedy host has been filled with controversy and critics. His abrasive comedy style frequently crosses the line into offensive territory for some viewers. He further divides opinions with his politically charged monologues and public feuds with conservative figures.
However, Kimmel maintains a very strong fanbase that enjoys his brand of comedy. While it is understandable why he has haters, Kimmel seems unlikely to change his approach significantly as long as his ratings remain stable. His comedy elicits strong reactions both for and against, but it continues to resonate with his core audience.
Frequently Asked Questions about Jimmy Kimmel Backlash
Why do conservatives dislike Jimmy Kimmel?
Conservatives often dislike Jimmy Kimmel primarily due to his frequent political commentary bashing Donald Trump, Fox News and the Republican party. His liberal monologues and anti-conservative jokes during non-political events like the Oscars also alienate more right-leaning viewers.
What did Jimmy Kimmel do to Sean Hannity?
In 2017 Jimmy Kimmel and Fox host Sean Hannity got into a feud after Hannity criticized Kimmel for mocking First Lady Melania Trump’s accent. Kimmel fired back by mocking Hannity and calling him an ass clown. Their TV feud got very ugly and personal.
Is Jimmy Kimmel’s comedy offensive?
Some viewers find Jimmy Kimmel’s comedy to be offensive at times, especially his segments that mock accents, fat shame people and crank call innocent civilians. Others believe his edgy humor goes with the territory of late night comedy.
Why did people get mad at Jimmy Kimmel over the Oscars?
Jimmy Kimmel has drawn criticism for some of his Oscars hosting gags like surprising unsuspecting tourists and making political jabs during an awards show. Some feel his bits are mean-spirited or alienate conservative viewers.
Was Jimmy Kimmel fired from anything?
Jimmy Kimmel has not been fired from any major hosting jobs yet. ABC continues to back him as the host of his late night talk show. The backlash he has faced has not impacted his episodes or airtime. He stopped doing his NFL Sunday pre-game comedy skits after protests over his politics.