×

Steve Harvey Apologizes for Joke About Asian Men: ‘Humor Was Not Meant With Any Malice’

Steve Harvey issued an apology on Tuesday for a segment on his talk show that poked fun at Asian men.

The show — which aired on Jan. 6 — featured Harvey mocking the title of self-help books. After showing the cover of “How to Date a White Woman: A Practical Guide for Asian Men,” Harvey launched into a minute-long monologue about how no women — white or otherwise — would ever go out with an Asian man.

Watch the segment below:

“Excuse me, do you like Asian men?” Harvey asked rhetorically. “No. Thank you.”

“You like Asian men?” he asked again. “I don’t even like Chinese food, boy. It don’t stay with you no time. I don’t eat what I can’t pronounce.” Harvey then doubled over while the audience uncomfortably laughed.

Members of the Asian American community did not find the segment humorous.

In an open letter to The New York Times, author Eddie Huang — whose memoir “Fresh Off the Boat” was turned in an ABC sitcom — said Harvey perpetuated the stereotype that “women don’t want Asian men.” Huang adds: “He speaks openly about issues facing the black community, he is a man of God, and he has a huge platform to speak from. Unfortunately, he’s also the type of guy who orders Krug champagne for himself and Cook’s for every one else. For his own personal profit, he’s willing to perpetuate the emasculation of Asian men regardless of how hypocritical it is.”

Last Thursday, a spokesman for “The Steve Harvey Show” issued a statement to Buzzfeed. “Steve Harvey was poking fun at unusual book titles in a comedic segment from Friday’s show,” it read. “His comments were never meant to demean the Asian community and the show sincerely apologizes to anyone who was offended.”

On Friday, Harvey — who had not apologized personally — said, “I ain’t been laughing that much over the past few days. They’re kinda beating me up on the internet right now for no reason. But, you know, that’s life, ain’t it?”

Apparently, Harvey figured out the reason for the backlash, tweeting a personal apology on Tuesday morning.

“I offer the humblest apology for offending anyone, particularly those in the Asian community, last week. It was not my intention and the humor was not meant with any malice or disrespect whatsoever,” he wrote.

The mea culpa came on the comedian’s 60th birthday and two weeks before he is scheduled to host the Miss Universe pageant in Manila, Philippines.

More TV

  • The Office

    'The Office' to Stream Exclusively on NBCUniversal Service Beginning in 2021

    NBCUniversal announced Tuesday that it will begin streaming “The Office” exclusively on its standalone streaming service beginning in 2021. The popular comedy series will leave Netflix once the current deal with NBCU expires in 2020, the same year that NBCU plans to launch its ad-supported streaming service. All nine seasons of the series will then [...]

  • 'Lincoln Lawyer' Series in Development at

    'Lincoln Lawyer' Series in Development at CBS from David E. Kelley

    David E. Kelley is returning once more to the court of legal dramas. CBS has issued a series production commitment for “The Lincoln Lawyer,” with Kelley in position to pen and executive produce. Based on the series of bestselling novels by Michael Connelly, the show hails from A+E Studios in association with CBS TV Studios. [...]

  • Patrick Somerville'Maniac' TV Show premiere, London,

    'Maniac' Creator to Helm 'Made for Love,' 'Station Eleven' for WarnerMedia

    “Maniac” creator Patrick Somerville has signed on to helm two new series, “Made for Love” and “Station Eleven,” for WarnerMedia’s upcoming streaming service. “Made for Love,” which will be executive produced and directed by S.J. Clarkson, is a 10-episode, straight-to-series adaptation based on the novel of the same name by Alissa Nutting. The half-hour comedy [...]

  • Naomi Watts and Gretchen Carlson'The Loudest

    ‘The Loudest Voice’ Stars Naomi Watts, Russell Crowe Talk Roger Ailes

    Roger Ailes may have been the force behind the creation of Fox News, but the late newsman’s legacy will forever be his atrocious sexual harassment of several of the network’s female anchors and producers. Showtime premiered its new limited series “The Loudest Voice,” which chronicles Ailes’ rise and fall, on Monday night at the Paris [...]

  • Steve McQueen VSS

    Amazon to Launch Steve McQueen's Anthology Series ‘Small Axe’ in the U.S.

    Amazon has boarded “Small Axe,” the upcoming anthology series from “12 Years a Slave” director Steve McQueen, and will launch the series in the U.S. It will bow on the BBC in the U.K. and BBC Studios is selling it internationally. Amazon’s European content chief Georgia Brown revealed its involvement in the series, Tuesday, at [...]

  • Paula Pell

    Quibi Orders Comedic Murder Mystery From Lorne Michaels, 'SNL' Alums

    Quibi keeps shelling out cash for content: Jeffrey Katzenberg’s richly funded startup has ordered a short-form murder-mystery comedy written by and starring former “Saturday Night Live” writers Paula Pell and John Lutz, and executive produced by Lorne Michaels’ Broadway Video alongside Seth Meyers and Mike Shoemaker. In “Mapleworth Murders,” Pell (pictured above) is Abigail Mapleworth, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content