Hatch Communications
Hatch Communications
Hatch Communications

Thought Leadership

James Corden gets a sweat on with some red-hot reputation management

by Elena Bunbury

Share

Sign up to our newsletter

Send us your email address and we’ll keep you updated with all things good from us at Hatch

Sign up Get in touch

Hot Ones was the best thing James Corden could do to save his reputation, welcome to my Ted Talk

In case you’ve been living under a rock, you might not know that polarising Late Night Host James Corden has found himself at the wrong end of a huge faux pas – being rude to service staff.

A few weeks ago, Keith McNally, the owner of Balthazar in Manhattan took to social media to state that James was banned for rude behaviour on two occasions to the service staff.

Just hours after this, the owner Keith posted an update saying James had apologised, taken accountability, he was welcome any time and all was Gucci.

But, when it rains, it pours. By this point, a social onslaught had already begun, of people sharing their own tales of interactions with James, and his apparent reputation for not treating staff well.

A lot of people waited with bated breath to see how James would respond and spin himself out of this. Maybe a tell-all interview, maybe a statement on social media.

In what seems like a great way to drive viewing traffic, James responded to it on his show, which you can view a clip of here.

 

To cut a long story short, James explained the situation, his thought process, took accountability, then moved swiftly on all within 4 minutes. But people were still angry.

To be a fly on the wall within James’s PR team would have been truly magical, to see the panic and fear as they realised the show segment hadn’t minimised the anger as they had wished.

So, they had a decision to make. A decision lots of PR agencies dread making. It was time to activate crisis comms.

Flash forward to the 10th of November and I see a new episode of Hot Ones has gone up on YouTube, with James Corden as the special guest. You can view the episode here.

 

For those who don’t know what Hot Ones is, it’s an interview YouTube show where with each question, the guest eats a chicken wig of a hotter spice level. It leads to meltdowns, tears, and real organic interactions as stars drop their guards whilst trying to make it through the interview.

To some, this may just seem like a publicity move. Get him on the popular hot wing-related interview show, ask him some questions, make people like him again. But to me, it seemed a lot more calculated.

Hot Ones is a cult favourite, the host Sean Evans is known as one of the best interviewers in the game, with his relaxed and exposing style.

However, the main thing that stuck out to me, as a move of PR brilliance, was the fact they chose a food-related show for his attempt to win back society.

We were able to watch him eat, say please and thank you, and see him interact in a much less formal environment.

The cameras cut and rolled to a clip of him saying how brilliant Sean was and how grateful he was for the opportunity, something that we simply would not get had this been a sit down with Oprah by the side of a pool.

This was full circle redemption with a side of chicken.

Now the really interesting part, was not a single question was asked about the incident and social media outcry, but it was still alluded to.

One of the hot sauces was named ‘Karma Sauce’, and upon being introduced to it James commented: “it’s Karma for things that my mouth may have done in the past”.

And that was all it took. A slight brush over the fact that he’s aware of what he’s done, he understands he deserves some bad karma, and he’s acknowledged it.

 

@etalkctv How spicy can you handle your hot wings? 👀 #JamesCorden experienced mouth karma when he appeared on #FirstWeFeast ‘s #HotOnes and tried hot wings. 🥵🔥 His reaction is making us tear up and crave wings both at the same time! 😅 (🎥: @firstwefeast ♬ original sound – etalk

He managed to address the issue without having to actually be taken to task over it. Finally, this show gave the public redemption. People wanted James to suffer, and that he did.

We watched him sweat, gasp, choke and have an all-round miserable time whilst working his way up the spice level, and for the British public, that was the cathartic episode we all needed to move past it.

I went into the show not wanting to like him, not wanting to forgive him and get off my moral high horse.

But as much as I hate to admit it, I left liking him and forgiving him for something I never even had a right to be angry about.

This was a masterclass in crisis comms, and one I think James has come out on top of.

 

Hot Ones was the best thing James Corden could do to save his reputation, welcome to my Ted Talk

In case you’ve been living under a rock, you might not know that polarising Late Night Host James Corden has found himself at the wrong end of a huge faux pas – being rude to service staff.

A few weeks ago, Keith McNally, the owner of Balthazar in Manhattan took to social media to state that James was banned for rude behaviour on two occasions to the service staff.

Just hours after this, the owner Keith posted an update saying James had apologised, taken accountability, he was welcome any time and all was Gucci.

But, when it rains, it pours. By this point, a social onslaught had already begun, of people sharing their own tales of interactions with James, and his apparent reputation for not treating staff well.

A lot of people waited with bated breath to see how James would respond and spin himself out of this. Maybe a tell-all interview, maybe a statement on social media.

In what seems like a great way to drive viewing traffic, James responded to it on his show, which you can view a clip of here.

 

To cut a long story short, James explained the situation, his thought process, took accountability, then moved swiftly on all within 4 minutes. But people were still angry.

To be a fly on the wall within James’s PR team would have been truly magical, to see the panic and fear as they realised the show segment hadn’t minimised the anger as they had wished.

So, they had a decision to make. A decision lots of PR agencies dread making. It was time to activate crisis comms.

Flash forward to the 10th of November and I see a new episode of Hot Ones has gone up on YouTube, with James Corden as the special guest. You can view the episode here.

 

For those who don’t know what Hot Ones is, it’s an interview YouTube show where with each question, the guest eats a chicken wig of a hotter spice level. It leads to meltdowns, tears, and real organic interactions as stars drop their guards whilst trying to make it through the interview.

To some, this may just seem like a publicity move. Get him on the popular hot wing-related interview show, ask him some questions, make people like him again. But to me, it seemed a lot more calculated.

Hot Ones is a cult favourite, the host Sean Evans is known as one of the best interviewers in the game, with his relaxed and exposing style.

However, the main thing that stuck out to me, as a move of PR brilliance, was the fact they chose a food-related show for his attempt to win back society.

We were able to watch him eat, say please and thank you, and see him interact in a much less formal environment.

The cameras cut and rolled to a clip of him saying how brilliant Sean was and how grateful he was for the opportunity, something that we simply would not get had this been a sit down with Oprah by the side of a pool.

This was full circle redemption with a side of chicken.

Now the really interesting part, was not a single question was asked about the incident and social media outcry, but it was still alluded to.

One of the hot sauces was named ‘Karma Sauce’, and upon being introduced to it James commented: “it’s Karma for things that my mouth may have done in the past”.

And that was all it took. A slight brush over the fact that he’s aware of what he’s done, he understands he deserves some bad karma, and he’s acknowledged it.

 

@etalkctv How spicy can you handle your hot wings? 👀 #JamesCorden experienced mouth karma when he appeared on #FirstWeFeast ‘s #HotOnes and tried hot wings. 🥵🔥 His reaction is making us tear up and crave wings both at the same time! 😅 (🎥: @firstwefeast ♬ original sound – etalk

He managed to address the issue without having to actually be taken to task over it. Finally, this show gave the public redemption. People wanted James to suffer, and that he did.

We watched him sweat, gasp, choke and have an all-round miserable time whilst working his way up the spice level, and for the British public, that was the cathartic episode we all needed to move past it.

I went into the show not wanting to like him, not wanting to forgive him and get off my moral high horse.

But as much as I hate to admit it, I left liking him and forgiving him for something I never even had a right to be angry about.

This was a masterclass in crisis comms, and one I think James has come out on top of.

 

Share

Sign up to our newsletter

Send us your email address and we’ll keep you updated with all things good from us at Hatch

Sign up Get in touch

Latest Insights

May 2024 //

Thought Leadership

From Deserts to Daiquiris – Hardest Geeza and Influencer Product Collaborations

Read More

May 2024 //

Thought Leadership

What’s going on in the world of Food and Bev TikTok? 

Read More

Sign up to our newsletter

Send us your email address and we’ll keep you updated with all things good from us at Hatch