I’m way, way late to the party on reactions to Jimmy Kimmel having ambushed and tongue-lashed Gawker editor Emily Gould on a guest-hosted Larry King Live segment last Friday night, but I’m only a day late in responding to Gould’s post-mortem commentary about the on-air fracas.
Gould’s defense is fairly cogent — comprehensive, point-by-point, emotionally balanced, a wee bit snide — plus it brought something into relief that I hadn’t really considered before, which is that Kimmel is sounding like a bit of an old-school pisshead with a Joey Bishop attitude about the internet.
Kimmel was fuming that night about Gawker having reported that he was “visibly drunk” (he said on the show that “I might have been loud but not drunk”). He also ripped into the Gawker Stalker map (i.e., an interactive feature that allows posters to identify the whereabouts of celebrities in Manhattan on an hour-by-hour basis) as something that may one day precipitate an attack on a celebrity. (C’mon…nobody stands still like a statue for an hour or two, and GS postings almost always go up an hour or so after the fact.)
For apparent empathy reasons, Kimmel also felt it was cruel and small of Gawker to remark that Kevin Costner, sighted somewhere in Manhattan, looked “fat.” (I think we all know Costner’s not svelte, and that this is a fairly old tune — I pitched a “Costner is looking beefy” idea to an EW editor fifteen years ago, and he’s bulked up plenty since then.)