James Corden has admitted that he is “disappointed” in himself after facing backlash for kissing former White House press secretary Sean Spicer at the Emmys.
The ‘Late Late Show’ host was accused of “normalising” fascism after a photo shared by Variety showed him embracing Spicer at Sunday’s star-studded ceremony.
“That photo of Corden kissing Spicer has awakened peak 2010 levels of Corden hate. HEY US TV HOSTS. STOP NORMALISING FASCISM FOR A BIT OK?!?”, one Twitter user wrote.
Commenting on Instagram, another wrote: “The man who denied Hitler gassed people during the holocaust, yeah let’s show this man some love. Wtf? Are you all out of your minds, this is sickening!!!! The treatment Spicer got tonight was sickening. He should never have appeared, never mind being given ‘celebrity’ status. What the hell is wrong with you all?!”
Now, Corden has responded to the backlash and admitted that he is “disappointed” in himself, likening the scenario to “getting drunk” and having regrets over kissing someone.
“The big winners last night were Donald Glover, Hulu and former White House press secretary Sean Spicer. Spicer won best actor in a comedy for his role in Donald Trump’s administration. I’m kidding, of course. But Sean Spicer actually did make a cameo at last night’s ceremony”, he said at the start of last night’s Late Late Show.
“According to some reports, at the after-party, Spicer was the post popular guy in the room. And I just want to say, I think people are forgetting that this man lied to the American people, and should not be embraced.”
As the now-notorious image flashed on screen, Corden joked: “These Hollywood phonies kissing up to Sean Spicer are disgusting. I mean, who did this? Who are we talking about here?” Yeah. I know you think that is a picture of me kissing Sean Spicer. But in the spirit of Sean Spicer — no, it isn’t.
“Anyone ever have that feeling when you get a little drunk and then wake up the next morning and think ‘Oh God, who did I kiss last night?’ It’s a bit like that. To be fair, everyone was kissing ass last night at the Emmys. I just happened to kiss the biggest one there.”
Admitting his disappointment, he added: “Understandably, some people have been disappointed by this photo. In truth, I’m disappointed by it as well. I am, I’ve have been reading a lot of harsh comments on Twitter today, and I hear you loud and clear, truly, I do.”
During his tenure as Press Secretary, Spicer became renowned for frequent gaffes, and was forced to apologise after claiming that Hitler did not use chemical weapons during the Holocaust.
Likening the Nazi dictator to Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, Spicer told journalists at the White House: “We didn’t use chemical weapons in world war two. You had someone as despicable as Hitler who didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons.”