PIERS Morgan says there's a "stench of rank hypocrisy" after the axing of ITV's The Jeremy Kyle Show.
The former newspaper editor – who co-hosts ITV's Good Morning Britain – is speaking out as the network cancels Jezza's show after alleged paedophile Steve Dymond, 63, died of an overdose after appearing on the programme.
He wrote in his column for Mail Online: "I smell both the stench of rank hypocrisy and shameless snobbery in a lot of the gleeful commentary being spewed today in the wake of Jeremy Kyle’s demise.
"Full disclosure, I know Kyle well and consider him a friend.
"He's an intelligent man and highly skilled broadcaster with a genuine fascination about, and empathy for, so-called ‘ordinary people’."
Piers then compared Jeremy to Jerry Springer, who hosted a similar show in America.
He said: "Both men, I think, viewed their primary role as truth-seekers, dispute-fixers, victim-supporters and villain-shamers. Of course, they knew the entertainment value for viewers would come from lively, animated guests.
"But the bottom line is that the vast majority of people who watched or appeared on them loved both the shows and the hosts.
"And, crucially, the guests all knew exactly what they were getting into when they signed up for them.
"Nobody held a gun to their heads. In an era where consent has become a major issue, they all gave consent.
"I doubt most of the journalists leading the charge to cancel Kyle ever actually watched the show for more than a few minutes. "
He added: "Let’s not pretend that somehow Jeremy Kyle is the only person in the media guilty of delivering a withering putdown."
The show was pulled off air on Monday as broadcast bosses worked frantically to come up with a final decision on its future.
But ITV has now permanently scrapped the programme, which ran 3,320 episodes over 14 years, after uproar from Mr Dymond’s loved ones and horrified viewers.
- The Jeremy Kyle Show is axed by ITV after 14 years
- Scrapped permanently after guest Steve Dymond died from an overdose
- His son Carl said he was left distraught after Kyle "ripped into him"
- Other guests revealed how the show had "ruined" their lives
- Leaked email revealed ITV bosses had wanted to "protect" the show
- Theresa May described crisis as "deeply concerning"
Carolyn McCall, ITV’s CEO, announced today: “Given the gravity of recent events we have decided to end production of The Jeremy Kyle Show.
“The Jeremy Kyle Show has had a loyal audience and has been made by a dedicated production team for 14 years, but now is the right time for the show to end.
“Everyone at ITV's thoughts and sympathies are with the family and friends of Steve Dymond."
The decision to axe Jeremy Kyle comes after Prime Minister Theresa May said Mr Dymond's death was a "deeply concerning case".
Top MPs will investigate whether telly shows are endangering participants by failing to support those with mental health issues.
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