Who will police the Fashion Police? Kathy Griffin, apparently.
Griffin's latest stop on the "Ask Me About Why I Quit Fashion Police" tour was the set of The View, where today the comic bashed the show, praised Lena Dunham, and threw a jab at the Fashion Police writing staff, who she seems to not have enjoyed working with.
Griffin kicked off her sit-down by explaining why Fashion Police—which she left after just two months—was all wrong for her:
I felt like Fashion Police just wasn't the thing for me. You know what I mean? My style is improvisational and off the cuff and they had a formula that worked so well with Joan and so well for so long and it just didn't fit my thing. And after awhile, I kind of felt like I was being forced to comment on pictures of beautiful women in perfect dresses, and say kind of bad things. [...] As a feminist and a comic, it just didn't feel like the right fit for me.
Reading between the lines here, Griffin sounds like she's implying, as she has in other post-Fashion Police interviews, that the real problem with the show is that cast members are fed canned jokes written by people who wanted Kathy Griffin to say things that Kathy Griffin did not feel like saying. In fact, they all were fed mean jokes about beautiful women in gorgeous clothing rather than being allowed to improvise. Regarding Rancic's "patchouli oil" joke, Griffin even referred to one of the writers as "some guy."
Well, I didn't know [Giuliana] was gonna say that, because some dude wrote that for her, which I didn't feel they really needed. I mean, honestly, I think that everyone should have just improvised. And so, you know, she said it. And I was trying to be a team player. And the show is very formulaic, and that's how they like it.
Does this mean that Rancic's well-received apology was also written by "some guy"? The same "some guy" or a different "some guy"? I'm going to have to wait for confirmation from Judge Kara Brown, but that characterization reads as mighty shady.
Immediately after criticizing her former writers for stifling creative spirit, Griffin explained that Lena Dunham helped her write her public statement after she quit Fashion Police, a move that seems contrary to her improvisational and off-the-cuff style.
Fashion Police's writers, by the way, were famously (and very recently) mistreated by former host Joan Rivers, who ran afoul of the Writers Guild of America West by overworking and underpaying the people who wrote her material for her. As LA Weekly reported:
Each week, they were assigned to come up with 200 jokes (or 10 jabs per outfit-on-famous-body), and Rivers selected the best ones to deliver to her audience. She demanded perfection, the writers say. But the work required to please her — the all-night writing and rewriting sessions — wasn't reflected in their pay per episode: $610 a week for most of the team.
Rivers would go on to enrage the Writer's Guild of America East by referring to the writers as "shmuck[s]" and "idiots" in an interview with Splitsider. So, in a way, by publicly slamming the writers of Fashion Police, Griffin is keeping her heroine's legacy alive.