Paula Deen Makes First TV Appearance Since Scandal Fallout, But The Timing Sucks

Fallen celebrity chef icon Paula Deen finally made her return to TV, but the timing was a little questionable.

Though the hyper-controversial “racism lawsuit” against her was eventually dropped, the damage to Deen’s empire and image has effectively been done, and the 66-year-old comfort food chef hasn’t made so much as a peep in months.

Wednesday night marked her return to TV, as she appeared in a guest role on MasterChef. The timing was a little strange, notes The Braiser. The episode aired on the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

This wasn’t planned, of course. The episode taped all the way back in March, before the racism allegations against Deen poured over into the mainstream. Fox was left in a bit of a pickle. They couldn’t edit Deen out of the episode because she’s too involved in the outcome, and they have to keep their schedule.

Instead, they just didn’t promote her appearance at all, reports TheWrap.

Though the courts more or less decided that Deen isn’t a racist, the May revelation that she had used the N-word and had planned a plantation-themed wedding with African-American servants pretty much destroyed her career and public image.

She was the subject of much media controversy and scrutiny, though the conversation about her started to die out after she lost millions in endorsement deals and business partnerships. She has, more recently, had a number of defenders and some have questioned whether we were a little too harsh in how we handled that whole thing.

Anyway. Do you think Fox should have pulled Paula Deen’s MasterChef episode?