Joel McHale enjoyed a lot of successful years as the host of The Soup. But now that McHale is no longer a part of the E! network, he’s finally opening up about the one show that he wasn’t allowed to mock: Keeping Up With the Kardashians.
According to Us Magazine, McHale revealed that E! president Ted Herbert originally gave him the green light to poke fun at any show on the network. That changed once he started joking about the Kardashians, who complained about his jabs to Herbert.
At the time, Herbert would just call McHale and tell him to lay off KUWTK for a week or so. The arrangement wasn’t ideal, but it still allowed McHale to make fun of the Kardashians from time to time. Things took a turn for the worse, however, when Herbert stepped down and E! got a new president.
When the new administration took over, they flat out told McHale that the Kardashians were off limits. Although The Soup had enjoyed 12 solid years on the network, McHale knew that the move would spell the end of the show.
“The next administration, the president said to my face, ‘Don’t make fun of the Kardashians. We don’t want you to make fun of the Kardashians anymore.’ So I was like, oh this show is doomed because that’s why the show worked, because we would make fun of ourselves,” McHale explained. “It’s like when [David] Letterman made fun of GE in the ’80s. You have to bite the hand that feeds you.”
Despite the misgivings, McHale is enjoying new life on Netflix with his self-titled series, The Joel McHale Show, and this time around nothing is out of bounds. In fact, McHale revealed that he might even make fun of the Kardashians, but only if the material is funny. With so many reality TV shows on the market, the Kardashians will probably only crop up periodically. And if he does make fun of the reality family, McHale isn’t worried about repercussions.
Not only does he consider himself small fish compared to the Kardashian brand, but he also doesn’t think they’ll be paying much attention to his new show. Not to mention that McHale will be covering international shows now that he’s part of Netflix.
McHale has tried his hand at streaming in the past. His comedy series, Community, enjoyed a brief season on Yahoo Screen before being canceled and shelved for good, after five seasons total.
When it comes to his new contract with Netflix, McHale has nothing but good things to say about the streaming giant. We can only hope that McHale’s second chance goes better than his first and that he gets to throw a few jabs towards the Kardashians for good measure.
The Joel McHale Show is currently streaming on Netflix. The series premiered on February 18 and will feature Kevin Hart, Alison Brie, Paul Reiser, Mike Colter, Jim Rash, and Jodie Sweetin as guests this season.