"Absolutely appalling." That's how the head of CBS describes some of the racial slurs heard this summer on the network's reality staple "Big Brother."
"I find some of the behavior absolutely appalling," CBS Corp. Chief Executive Leslie Moonves -- whose wife, Julie Chen, hosts "Big Brother" -- told reporters Monday morning at the TV press tour in Beverly Hills.
"Unfortunately, it's a reflection of what some people in America are feeling," he added.
GinaMarie Zimmerman, one contestant on this season's show, was heard making derogatory remarks about blacks and Asians. Aaryn Gries, another houseguest on the voyeuristic reality show, dismissed a rival with a gay slur.
The comments were first revealed on the show's 24-hour webstream; an episode telecast after the controversy first broke showed racial tensions in the house. CBS released a statement distancing itself from the remarks.
Moonves is known to pay close attention to all of CBS' shows, but "Big Brother" gets even more attention. "I watch every episode of the show," Moonves told reporters. "My wife would kill me if I didn't."
However, he defended the show as a "social experiment" that had value even if the contestants sometimes said hurtful things.
What do you think of Moonves' remarks about "Big Brother"?
[For the record, July 29, 5:20 p.m.: A previous version of this post misspelled Aaryn Gries’ first name as Aaryan.]