Daytime talk show host Wendy Williams has touched a nerve with radio giant Howard Stern, who went on a long rant on his SiriusXM show Wednesday following her brief criticism of him on her show.
In a segment promoting Stern's latest memoir, Williams, 54, began by saying Stern and Oprah Winfrey were the broadcast hosts she admired and who influenced her most. She then opined, "Howard is so Hollywood right now … and Howard, I love you, but since you've gone Hollywood, everything that you say is so predictable. Every story is going to be about, y'know, 'Oh, I love this one, and then we went on their yacht and...''' He's a Hollywood insider now, which [expletive]. Because you started like me, being of the people. But at some point you sat behind that microphone for too long and now you are the people. And for somebody like me, it hurts."
She then went on to recommend his book "Howard Stern Comes Again," due out May 14 from Simon & Schuster. Stern wrote the 1993 memoir "Private Parts" and the 1995 essay collection "Miss America."
Stern, 65, raised in Roosevelt and Rockville Centre, became livid on his show. "You are nobody to me. You'll never be me, Wendy. You'll never be me. You can pretend to be me, you can pretend to be like me, but you're not. You don't have my wit and you don't have my talent. … You couldn't have that career. You're a fly," he said, according to a partial transcript by People magazine.
"What evidence do you have that I'm Hollywood, honey?" he continued, adding, “What, because I found success now I'm 'Hollywood?' What, 'cause I know Jimmy Kimmel? … She doesn't know who I'm hanging out with. She doesn't know what I do in this world. … All she talks on that show is about Hollywood. That's as Hollywood as you get. If anyone in Hollywood called her to hang out, she'd [be there] in two seconds. All of that is a projection!"
Stern castigated Williams as safe. "What has she said that's controversial?" he asked. "When has she put herself on the line? … You haven't had the career I've had. I had radio stations firing me, I had the government on my [expletive]. I never backed down from a fight in my life. … When did you ever go to war with anyone? When did you fight with the FCC? When did you have the religious right coming up your [expletive] and people throwing you off radio stations and not knowing if you can continue you career?"
Stern additionally attacked what he called Williams' "mystery illness" — the thyroid disorder Graves' disease, of which Williams has been upfront about — and the unconfirmed rumors of her husband's infidelity.
"People do not like her," he went on, alleging that during her more than two-month hiatus due to illness her staff "was doing a dance over at 'The Wendy Williams Show' when she was out. … Good thing you hurried back."
Williams did not respond to Stern's rant on her show Thursday. On Wednesday she tweeted, "Showed love to Howard Stern this morning about his new book. Gonna buy it. Had his wife on my show several times. Being told that he's being nasty to me on his show. It's all good, Howie. I still admire you old man! The truth is the truth."