‘American Idol’ Fans Clap Back at Whoopi Goldberg for Criticizing Show

Whoopi Goldberg, American Idol cast

Heavy/Getty/ABC Whoopi Goldberg is facing backlash after her comments about "American Idol"

Entertainer Whoopi Goldberg, who’s served as moderator of ABC’s daily talk show “The View” for the last 15 years, according to CinemaBlend, got herself in hot water over recent comments she made dissing “American Idol,” which also airs on ABC.

While chatting with her co-hosts on May 24, 2023, Goldberg stunned them and her executive producer by claiming the 2002 launch of “American Idol,” which just wrapped up its 21st season, marked “the beginning of the downfall of society.” Here’s what you need to know:

Whoopi Goldberg Tries to Clarify Statements About Her Issue With ‘American Idol’

Whoopi Goldberg

ABCWhoopi Goldberg on “The View” in 2021

On the May 24 episode of “The View,” Goldberg and her co-hosts discussed the new Netflix documentary about model Anna Nicole Smith, whose life and death were heavily scrutinized by the media. Goldberg said it was an example of how much “people like to be judgy” and then listed TV shows that have perpetuated that.

“You have ‘Basketball Wives,’ you have the ‘Housewives’ of whatever, all the Bravo shows, giving you the impression that you’re doing something wrong because you’re living your life,” she said. “People watch these shows because they make them feel better.”

“I think that we, as a society, love to watch stuff to judge folks,” Goldberg continued and then turned to Brian Teta, executive producer of “The View,” who was standing off-camera. “You know, I’ve always thought that the beginning of the downfall of society was with, um, what’s the name of that show? I always tell you that.”

“ABC’s ‘American Idol?'” Teta replied, trying to subtly emphasize that she was criticizing a show on their own network. The audience and Goldberg’s co-hosts laughed, but Goldberg countered, “Well, it was not always on ABC. When it began, it was on another network.”

“American Idol” began on FOX in 2002 with judges Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, and the notoriously critical Simon Cowell, but wrapped up its run there in 2016. It was rebooted by ABC in 2018.

Goldberg’s co-host Joy Behar looked puzzled and asked, “You think the downfall of American society was with ‘American Idol’?”

“It began,” Goldberg replied, “and I’m gonna tell you why. Because once we gave people the ability to judge other people, I think we ran amuck with it, and it’s gone out of control,” she said.

Behar argued that there have long been shows with judges, including “The Gong Show,” but Goldberg said the difference is that viewers were given the chance to vote for the contestants.

“They invited the public to decide who their person was and and I feel once we did that, it began us in a cycle which we have not,” she said before noticing Teta gesturing to her off-camera, causing her to stop and ask him, “Did you really just do that?”

Clearly trying to get Goldberg to stop trashing another show on their network, Teta said, “But it’s gotten better and you like it now, remember?”

As people around the table and in the audience laughed, co-host Sunny Hostin said, “You like it! ABC, she likes it. ABC. She loves it! It’s really good.”

Goldberg did then clarify, “When I was watching it, ABC didn’t have it. They have it now, it’s a different show. It’s a very different show. The judges are different with the people who are coming, but when it first began, it was a very different (show).”

“And ABC knows that I feel like this,” she added. “I’ve told them! It has nothing to do with them. It had to do with the show. See, you startin’ stuff, man!”

Fans Slam Whoopi Goldberg Online Over ‘American Idol’ Comments

American Idol cast

ABC“American Idol” stars Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, Ryan Seacrest and Luke Bryan.

As “The View” aired and after news spread about Goldberg’s comments, “American Idol” fans took to social media to weigh in — and the vast majority were not happy.

On Twitter, one woman wrote, “What a hypocrite! Whoopi judges everyone and everything. The View is the downfall of society if you ask me!”

“Hey Whoopi,” another person tweeted. “On the subject of people voting in ‘American Idol,’ didn’t a group of people judge and vote you in for an Oscar? Hmmm.”

Another wrote, “Whoopi bashes her own employer. #Dumb” and multiple people urged ABC to fire Goldberg over her statements.

When the New York Post shared the story on Facebook, hundreds of people commented. One wrote, “‘The View’ is ground zero for the downfall of society. I’ve never seen such a bitter coven of women. Watching that show for 5 minutes depletes any happiness you may be feeling that day.”

Another chimed in, “Downfall of society..that’s rich coming from one of the most judgmental persons on TV. The downfall of society is social media”

But not everyone was upset with Goldberg’s comments. When Page Six posted about the conversation on Instagram, one person replied, “She’s absolutely right. That show in the beginning was awful … it jump started all this toxic social media bullying/reality tv bullying.”

Goldberg welcomed current “American Idol” judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry, and Lionel Richie onto “The View” in March, telling them she was happy they were there at the table with her. In fact, she got so engrossed in conversation with them that she forgot to end the segment until producers got her attention off-camera.