Mika Brzezinski and MSNBC’s handling of a strange Russell Brand interview last week that went viral has been addressed by the anchor — who apologized for the terribly off course trajectory of the comedian’s appearance.
Mika Brzezinski did a segment featuring Russell Brand as well as co-hosts Katty Kay and Brian Shactman, one that famously slipped away from the MSNBC team to an annoyed and retaliating Brand.
One of the aspects that seemed to raise Brand’s ire was the insistance of the three MSNBC hosts to act as if they had no idea who he was, and that the trio repeatedly addressed him as if he were not party to their conversation — talk which was condescending and critical.
After Mika Brzezinski, Kay, and Shactman continued to call Brand by the wrong name and insult him, the comic snapped and said:
You’re talking about me as if I’m not here, and as if I’m an extra-terrestrial. You know I’m from a country that’s near to you?… You shouldn’t say ‘he’ when a person is present. You should refer to that person by their name. That’s basic good manners.
Of Mika specifically, Brand joked:
“What do you think that gesture means, the way you’re touching that bottle? What’s the subtext of that? You need to lose that ring Mika, ’cause it don’t mean nothing to you. She’s grasping for the shaft. She’s a shaft grasper.”
Brzezinski now says she truly had no idea who Russell Brand was before the interview, and it appears she didn’t take 30 seconds to Google him either.
“People come in here one after the other. I know Ratner, I know Andy, I didn’t know Russell… I don’t think Russell liked that. I’ve never gotten more vitriol and anger and hatred than I’ve gotten over this, so I apologize for not knowing.”
While Mika Brzezinski’s apology rings hollow overall, it also seems reasonable for a guest that the hosts would at the very least pretend they haven’t done a basic amount of research before resulting to mocking an interviewee.