Late-night talk show hosts went to town on the college admissions bribery scandal Tuesday night, launching broadsides aimed at actors Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin for their alleged roles in bribing officials and falsifying records in order to get their kids admitted to prestige schools.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the evening was packed with Full House jokes and “Aunt Becky” references. With Huffman’s long-term role on the ABC series Desperate Housewives, the jokes practically wrote themselves. And with the scandal hitting smack-dab in the nexus of some of America’s favorite topics of discussion – namely celebrity, wealth, privilege, and criminal behavior – it was hard for late-night hosts to resist.
Hosts including Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Kimmel, Seth Myers, and Trevor Noah all took aim at the 40 parents who were charged by the FBI with crimes in the college admissions scandal. The agency alleges that the parents, including Loughlin, Huffman, and her husband, William H. Macy, collectively paid millions to falsify grades and test scores, create fictional extracurricular activities, and bribe officials in order to get the fruit of their loins admitted to top-rated schools like Yale, Stanford, the University of Texas, and others.
On The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, Colbert admitted he found it a relief to turn the spotlight away from President Donald Trump for once, calling the scandal “refreshing.”
“You know how conspiracy theorists say everything is rigged for the wealthy and famous? Well, as a wealthy, famous person, let me just respond by saying you’re absolutely right.”
Colbert then referred to Loughlin’s time as Aunt Becky on Full House, noting that it wasn’t her first scandal.
“Back in the ’90s, Loughlin was part of a notorious scheme where they made a pair of twins pretend to be one person,” he said of the show’s employing the Olsen twins to play one character.
On The Daily Show, Trevor Noah called it the biggest story to hit American colleges “since the invention of the red solo cup.”
Over on Late Night, Seth Myers called the scandal “the second-worst thing” Loughlin has done and flashed an image of the Full House reboot, Fuller House, on screen.
And on Jimmy Kimmel Live, the host took a poke at Loughlin’s Aunt Becky character as well, suggesting that Beyonce may have known something the rest of us didn’t all along.
“They’re saying this could be the ‘Becky with the good hair’ Beyonce warned us about.”
Huffman and Macy are alleged to have used a purported $15,000 charitable donation as a payment to one of the suspects in the scheme and arranged to get their daughter double the standard amount of time to take the SAT, as well as arranging for her to take the test outside of her school. Loughlin and her fashion icon husband, Mossimo Giannulli, allegedly paid the same suspect $500,000 to arrange it with USC so that their daughters would appear to have rowed crew even if neither did.
Huffman was arrested at her home early Tuesday morning but is currently free on $250,000 bond.