10 Most Controversial Hosts Of The View
In 1997, Barbara Walters and executive producer Bill Geddie conceived a new daytime television talk show like we had never seen before, with five female hosts around one table, discussing hot topics and interviewing guests. It was set for controversy from the start. The original group of hosts consisted of Barbara Walters, Meredith Vieira, Joy Behar, Star Jones, and Debbie Matenopoulos. Since then, year after year the hosts have changed. While the original concept has remained the same, the controversy thickens with each new host added because, with each new host comes a host of her own opinions. There are some hosts who stand out as the most controversial in The View’s history, like these 10:
10. Joy Behar
Joy began as a fill-in for Barbara Walters when she was unable to film and soon became a permanent fixture around the table. The sassy, middle-aged New York comedienne was relatively unknown at the time to the North American audience. The crass remarks and tongue-in-cheek comments made her a quick favorite. Joy, speaking of the enemies she made with her jabs and quips, told Jay Leno, “I got in trouble a lot, I mean, people don’t know how much trouble I got into.” She was even briefly fired by Barbara Walters in 2006 after she spilled the beans on the announcement of Rosie O’Donnell joining the host table. Her most well-known controversy was in 2015 when a Miss America pageant contestant, who was a nurse, came out in uniform to do a monologue for her talent portion. Joy mocked and questioned why the nurse would be wearing a “doctor’s stethoscope” and the nurses of America did not take that well. Social media blew up and gave Joy a good tongue lashing. The controversy lasted on air for a week, but Joy remains in her host seat!
9. Elisabeth Hasselbeck
This former Survivor contestant and wife to NFL player Tim Hasselbeck joined The View in 2003. She came on the show as the conservative representative at the table and it was expected that she would create controversy. Between her views on the morning-after pill, abortion, government, the war in Iraq and more, she was a walking hot topic. It all came to a peak in 2007 when she got into a heated debate with Rosie O’Donnell after Rosie made a statement about the war in Iraq. Hasselbeck supported the war and O’Donnell opposed it. The argument turned into an infamous moment in television where the producers put it to a split screen while the women got increasingly worked up. It was quite possibly the most controversial moment in the show’s history.
8. Jenny McCarthy
Jenny McCarthy — former playmate, actress, model, and comedienne — joined The View for one season, replacing Elisabeth Hasselbeck. She managed to make headlines in that one season for one big reason — her view on vaccines. McCarthy has a son who was diagnosed with autism which she claims is a “vaccine injury.” When it was announced that she would be joining the show, paediatricians began to worry about her impact on viewers. Seattle-based pediatrician Wendy Sue Swanson spoke out saying, “In the medical community, we’ll work to undo myths around vaccine safety for the rest of our lives, in part because of Ms. McCarthy.” Her time on the show was short-lived, and while her time on the show didn’t prove to be too much of a soap-box for the anti-vaxxers, she was undoubtedly one of the most talked about hosts.
7. Whoopi Goldberg
While Whoopi seemingly remained the calm one of the group, at times the lead host often created controversy by NOT speaking. Whoopi refused to speak on stories like the Bill Cosby rape scandal or the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. She did, however, get into a spat with co-host Candace Cameron Bure over the Oscars seemingly racist nominations. She again got into debate on The View over whether black history month should still be celebrated. Whoopi has used her 10-year platform as a host on The View to remind viewers her opinion and stance on racism and that can be controversial.
6. Star Jones
Star Jones joined The View in it’s original state in 1997. The lawyer and journalist in 2003 began losing weight, but never addressed it. She lost 160 pounds with America watching. When she did address it, she claimed it was from “diet and exercise.” In 2007, she revealed to Glamour magazine that she had in fact lied. Jones actually had gastric bypass surgery. Another controversy surrounding Star was when she announced her wedding plans to investment banker Al Reynolds in 2004 and began plugging products and clothing for her wedding on the show in exchange for getting them for free. ABC claimed that by doing this on The View she was in violation of network policy which prohibited on-air mentions in exchange for products. That year her contract was not renewed and Star Jones told People Magazine, “What you don’t know is that my contract was not renewed for the 10th season…I feel like I was fired.”
5. Candace Cameron Bure
The Fuller House star Candace Cameron Bure came on The View as a sweet bubbly personality. What viewers came to discover is that she has strong conservative opinions as an evangelical Christian (not unlike her brother, child-star Kirk Cameron). Candace received death threats after she supported a cake business’s right to refuse making a wedding cake for a lesbian couple based on their constitutional rights. The other co-hosts were quick to jump on her for defending the cake shop, but Candace remained poised, reminding the women again of the constitution. It’s not the first time Candace has come under fire for her wildly conservative opinions and it’s doubtful it will be her last.
4. Barbara Walters
As the creator of the show, it’s rather bizarre to think of the long-time journalist, reporter and TV host as anything but poised and collected. Maybe that’s why it became so odd for viewers to think of her being anything else. While she did voice some controversial opinions like defending Woody Allen’s parenting, she successfully weirded out many when she made an admission to owning a vibrator! Too much information, Barbara.
3. Raven Symone
Former child-star, Raven Symone came onto The View in 2015 and was adamant about letting everyone know she is not a child anymore. She has made countless controversial statements on various news outlets (not just The View), creating controversy that followed her onto the show. She wasn’t on the show long before she made headlines for her opinion on the title “African-American” (which she argues she is not and that she should be just called “American”), as well as the use of the known racist “N” word, which she feels should be openly used by everyone because, in her opinion, it’s no longer a racist term. We get it girl, you’ve grown up.
2. Meredith Vieira
Meredith served as The View’s lead host for nearly a decade before finally making the decision to leave for the Today show, replacing Katie Couric to sit alongside Matt Lauer on the popular morning television show. During her time on The View, she served more as a mediator than a contributor to controversy. A year after her exit, she was quoted in an interview with Time Magazine and spoke of the show saying how it was “very sad” what’s happened to it: “I’m proud of the work we did there, but it’s not a good time in the history of the show… It’s hard to watch. It sort of became a joke.” The media then attack her for it and she backpedaled, saying it wasn’t the show itself that was a joke, but how the media portrayed it. Regardless, it’s pretty risky thing to say about a show that gave her career wings and a paycheck for 9 years.
1. Rosie O’Donnell
Undoubtedly the most controversial host on The View was Rosie O’Donnell. After years of success on her own show, The Rosie O’Donnell Show, she seemed like a perfect fit as a moderator at the round table. Things had changed for Rosie since being on her own show because she was now an openly gay woman and a spokesperson for many gay rights movements. Combined with extremely liberal views, she was caught in constant controversy with her fellow co-hosts, most notably the conservative ones. She also made an public enemy of Donald Trump which became an ongoing feud on and off the show. Her most known controversy was the shocking “split screen” debate with Elisabeth Hasselbeck about the Bush administration‘s policies with the Iraq War, where she insinuated that American’s were the “real terrorists.” This resulted in a mutual agreement to cancel her contract after only one year. In 2014, once producers realized that all that controversy made for amazing ratings and publicity, they brought Rosie back on as a co-host. Rosie left the show once again after only one year due to health issues.