‘The Late Late Show’ host James Corden is facing backlash for a segment on his TV show that many online are deeming “incredibly culturally offensive.”
The segment, ‘Spill Your Guts or Fill Your Guts’, is a riff on “truth or dare” that gives celebrity guests the choice between answering an embarrassing question or eating food Corden has deemed unappetising or inedible.
The problem is that many of the so-called offending dishes are not uncommon in other parts of the world, especially in Asian cuisine.
Foods like balut, a fertilised egg dish that’s a staple of Filipino cuisine, and chicken feet, an item easy to find in Chinese restaurants, were called “terrible” and “really disgusting” in a 2016 segment with Jimmy Kimmel.
“I don’t even really know what that is,” Corden said when presenting Kimmel with the balut.
The long-running game is a popular segment on Corden’s show, enlisting celebrities such as Cher, Kobe Bryant, Kim Kardashian, Harry Styles and Justin Bieber. Chrissy Teigen made an appearance three months ago on the most recent edition of ‘Spill Your Guts’.
Former fan Kim Saira started a petition to address the segment’s cultural insensitivity. Racking up more than 13,200 signatures to date, the Change.org petition calls on Corden to change the game or cease it altogether. It also asks that Corden issue an apology and requests that a donation be made to support Asian-owned businesses.
Saira recently told the ‘Today’ show that she stopped watching Corden after seeing the segment ridicule balut, a “sentimental food” she eats with her family on trips to the Philippines.
“I was just so confused, and I feel like it was a moment of me just being like, ‘Oh, my gosh, like, this is my culture. I don’t understand why he’s making fun of it,’” Saira said.
Representatives for ‘The Late Late Show’ have yet to comment.
Comments under the video of Kimmel’s appearance, which has been viewed more than 27 million times, echo a similar sentiment. “I think its funny that they use mostly asian food as the ‘disgusting’ foods they will be dared to eat. Kind of really offensive,” reads one.
“The part where they had traditional Asian food was extremely disrespectful they could’ve been more polite or subtle about it even if it was gross,” says another user.
On Monday, Saira also uploaded a TikTok that went viral and inspired her to create the petition. The video, which shares her commentary on clips of the ‘Spill Your Guts’ balut episode, has been watched more than 2 million times.
“ok but this is actual Asian food & youre going on live tv telling people how gross it is,” she captioned the video.
Critics also highlighted the need to reevaluate the segment’s presentation of Asian food in the wake of heightened attention to anti-Asian violence across the country.
“Content like this continually perpetuates and encourages harm and racism against Asian Americans in our daily lives,” Saira’s petition reads.