The 2020 Emmys looked quite different from previous years due to social distancing guidelines amid the coronavirus pandemic. Emmy presenters wore hazmat suits, actors and actresses accepted awards from the comfort of their homes, and a small fire broke out, which seemed like the perfect metaphor for 2020.
With no stars, no carpet, and no audience at the Staples Center, the 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards decided to keep one element to hopefully get viewers through the night: a host. Late night host Jimmy Kimmel was chosen to host the 2020 Emmys. The comedian previously landed the gig in 2012 and 2016. Kimmel’s 2020 appearance as the host of the award show came after the 2019 Emmys opted not to have a host at all, following the lead of the 2019 Oscars, per Refinery29.
Kimmel had a new challenge returning as the host of the award show — no real audience to laugh at his opening monologue. Given the circumstances, it seemed the only way to determine if the comedian’s jokes were registering with award show viewers was to look at social media, and Twitter seemed a bit unhappy with one of Kimmel’s celebrity digs of the night.
Jimmy Kimmel made a cringe-worthy joke about John Oliver
No stranger to hosting award shows, as of this writing, late night host Jimmy Kimmel has hosted the Academy Awards two times and the Emmy Awards three times, including 2020. The only difference when it came to the 72nd Primetime Emmy Awards was the lack of an audience to laugh along with the comedian as he made digs at celebrities and, of course, the 2020 presidential election.
One joke, in particular, didn’t sit well with Twitter users at all. The jab in question was directed toward fellow late night host John Oliver of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. After Oliver’s acceptance speech for Outstanding Variety Talk Series, Kimmel took a moment to make a quick joke about calling ICE. on the British host. Oliver first came to the United States in 2006 as a correspondent on The Daily Show before becoming a U.S. citizen in December 2019, per The Hollywood Reporter.
Twitter found Kimmel’s dig at Oliver’s citizenship to be “terrible,” a “bad look” and even led some to some barf emojis. It seems like that joke didn’t come across virtually the way it may have come across in Kimmel’s head.
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