The raging controversy over comments made by
Every week, it seemed, brought another polarizing media moment, from
When two of his team members on
Levine defended himself by tweeting the dictionary definition of "humorless" and "joke" and released a statement reassuring viewers he did, in fact, love his country and that his comments were "made purely out of frustration." The apology seems to have worked: the mini-controversy was long forgotten by November, when People crowned him the "Sexiest Man Alive," a decision that at least in some corners of the Internet, was far more troubling than his on-air gaffe.
As her lucrative endorsement deals dried up, Deen's fans (including Glenn Beck) rallied behind her, arguing that her use of an epithet decades ago did not make her a racist. Unfortunately, Deen didn't do much to help her cause, posting and promptly removing an awkward statement, then abruptly canceling a
4. Reza Aslan vs. Fox News
In July, author and academic Reza Aslan sat down with host Lauren Green for what Buzzfeed would later call “the most embarrassing interview Fox News has ever done.” Though Aslan was there to discuss the contents of his book “Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of
Though it was only broadcast online, the interview went viral. It also turned out to be a blessing in disguise for Aslan: Shortly after it aired, his book rose to the top of the Amazon bestseller list.
No one who watched Miley Cyrus' performance at this year's VMAs will ever be able to "unsee" the former Disney star twerking with crooner
The conservative Parents Television Council blasted
On Oct. 27,
Though questions quickly arose about the veracity of the report, which correspondent
The correspondent issued a brief apology at the end of the show's Nov. 10 broadcast, but the mea culpa failed to quell some critics who argued that given the enormity of Logan's blunder, someone at the show should be disciplined, as they were following the so-called "Rathergate" scandal in 2004. (Nor did it help that Davies' book was published by an imprint owned by CBS, and that Logan had been vocal about her own opinions on Benghazi in the past.)
7. Alec Baldwin vs. a photographer
It's safe to say that 2013 was a roller-coaster year for Alec Baldwin, who ended his run on
The low-rated "Up Late" probably would not have been long for this world anyway, but Baldwin hastened its cancellation by allegedly hurling a gay slur at a paparazzo in New York. MSNBC quickly suspended him for the incident, which some suggested was in inadequate punishment and an embarrassment to the supposedly progressive network. Under mounting pressure, MSNBC finally announced it was parting ways with the star.
MSNBC has been handing out a lot of pink slips this year. Barely a week after Baldwin got the axe, host Martin Bashir was sent packing for lewd comments he made about Sarah Palin. Unlike Baldwin, however, Bashir did not make his remarks in the heat of the moment, but in a scripted segment during the 4 p.m. broadcast of his show.
It all began in November when Palin compared the national debt to slavery during a speech at a conservative fundraiser in Iowa. The remarks prompted a fierce rebuke from many on the left, but Bashir took his response to a vulgar extreme by suggesting the former vice presidential candidate ought to be subjected to a a vile scatalogical punishment used on slaves in the antebellum South. (Video below includes strong language.)
Fox News' annual coverage of the supposed "War on Christmas" has provided writers on
"For all you kids watching at home, Santa just is white," Kelly told viewers. "Santa is what he is.... I wanted to get that straight." She also rehashed the debate over Jesus' ethnic identity, declaring that it's a "verifiable fact" that he was a white man.
The "black Santa" debate dominated the cable news cycle and late-night talk shows for several days, with some critics accusing Kelly of race-baiting while others simply wondered why the entire news media was debating the ethnic background of a (spoiler alert!) mythical figure. In the end, Kelly insisted that the her comments about Santa were an "offhand jest" and that her critics were being humorless.
10. A&E vs. 'Duck Dynasty'
Any contentious media moments that we've forgotten? Or that you'd like to forget but can't? Please share in the comments.