The Ellen DeGeneres Show has returned amid her toxic workplace scandal. Her first episode of Season 18 debuted on Monday September 21). Watch the full episode, here.
What Ellen DeGeneres Said
The talk show host addressed the controversy head on during her opening monologue. “As you may have heard this summer there were allegations of a toxic work environment at our show,” she told the virtual audience. “And then there was an investigation. I learned that things happened here that never should have happened.”
DeGeneres said that she takes it “very seriously” and apologized to the people that were affected. “I know that I’m in a position of privilege and power and I realize that with that comes responsibility. And I take responsibility for what happens at my show. This is the Ellen DeGeneres Show. I am Ellen DeGeneres.”
Watch the monologue, below.
The Season Premiere
This season is unlike anything in years past due to health and safety concerns from the coronavirus (COVID-19) concerns. DeGeneres’ guests are seated in her studio six feet apart. The first guest was actor and comedian Tiffany Haddish, who was just nominated at the 2020 Emmys. She also gave the “world exclusive” pre-recorded acceptance speech for Outstanding Variety Special.
DeGeneres also donated $50,000 to Direct Relief to aid in the wildfires devastating the West Coast. She also met 26-year-old Kenneth Smith and his six siblings. Smith is the caretaker of his six younger siblings after his mother’s tragic passing four years ago. Smith is a first-generation college graduate. He set aside his dream of going to medical school to care for his siblings.
The family is at risk of losing their home due to tough times. DeGeneres and Shutterfly surprised the family with a check for $75,000 to put toward their mortgage.
Later this week, DeGeneres has a packed lineup of celebrity appearances. Interviews include Kerry Washington, Alec Baldwin, Kris Jenner, Adam Sandler, Amy Schumer, and Orlando Bloom. Additionally, musicians SuperM and Blake Shelton will perform.
Prior to this season, DeGeneres recorded her show from her home with her crew outside her living room. Season 18 was allegedly delayed due to the scandal and WarnerMedia’s investigation into the show.