You guys know I love Jimmy Fallon a whole lot. I think he’s incredibly talented and funny, his show is one of my faves, and his monologues usually hit it out of the park…except for the whole tendency to tell fat jokes that aren’t even very funny. They’re usually aimed at people I don’t like very much – Governor Chris Christie, for example, and Newt Gingrich – but that doesn’t excuse them in my book. I get that fat jokes are funny to some (many?) people. I get that he has writers that help him come up with material. I get that the show often devolves to teenage boy levels of humor, and I don’t mind that at all. It just doesn’t make any sense for him to tell so many fat jokes. Here’s why:
1. Ben & Jerry’s Light Night Snack Ice Cream. The show has their own ice cream flavor (which is effing INCREDIBLE), and they promote the ice cream somewhat regularly. Guess who buys ice cream? Fat people! Or maybe people who used to be thin until they started eating his delicious, drool-inducing ice cream on the regular. Guess who doesn’t buy ice cream? People that are worried about their weight. It isn’t just other fat people who bristle at the jokes – they also stir up bad feelings inside people who have struggled with weight loss, or perhaps people who are a perfectly healthy weight but still see themselves as fat. Why would you mock fat people when your ice cream sales are directly correlated with people eating fatty food? I don’t get it.
2. Several members of the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon team are overweight. I don’t want to call people out by name, but suffice it to say that you see chubby people on stage/behind the scenes almost every episode. Do they write these jokes? Are you 100% sure that NONE of these people are the least bit bothered by frequent fat jokes? Granted, most of these people are men. I know many guys – funny guys especially – that really don’t give a shit about their weight, eating habits, or any jokes that people make about fat in general. So maybe that’s the case, but still, these jokes insult many, many, members of the viewing audience. They also might be insulting to various guests that appear on your show. Why would you alienate such a potentially large (no pun intended) portion of your fans and audience?
3. They aren’t even very good jokes. Sorry, but jokes about how Newt Gingrich ate up allllll the breakfast foods just aren’t up to par with the other jokes that Fallon delivers. I will concede that my own bias factors in to this. Maybe other people – people who aren’t sensitive about weight issues – think those jokes are HILARIOUS. But I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in my distaste. Sometimes Jimmy will even question why they made the joke. After mocking Chris Christie’s weight, for example, Jimmy mentioned that they are friends with him, he has come on the show, so why are they making fun of him? The only person with a definitive answer to these questions is Jimmy Fallon himself.
So, hey Jimmy…from one Late Night Snack fan to another….can you maybe calm it down with the fat jokes? Your team is SO talented, SO funny, SO creative – I’m sure they can fill that space with clever jokes that DON’T inspire people to drop their Ben & Jerry’s addictions. Just saying.