Melissa Rivers, daughter of the late comedy icon Joan Rivers, has opened up about her feelings toward comedian Kathy Griffin, who briefly succeeded the elder Rivers as host of E!'s "Fashion Police" in January. Griffin had criticized the show as "formulaic" and not in keeping with her sensibilities "as a feminist and a comic."
"I'm just going to say it wasn't a match, on a lot of levels," Rivers, 47, told interviewer Hoda Kotb at Manhattan's 92nd Street Y Tuesday night. Griffin's statements upon leaving the show on March 12 disrespected "my mother's legacy," Rivers said. She conceded, "I know that wasn't how it was intended . . . but that was my take-away."
Griffin's spokesman did not return a Newsday request for comment.
Rivers also reflected on the allegations of racism leveled against "Fashion Police" co-host Giuliana Rancic, who had said on Feb. 23 singer-actress Zendaya's dreadlocks on the Academy Awards red carpet the night before suggested the smell of "patchouli oil or weed." Co-host Kelly Osbourne quit the show amid the ensuing controversy on Feb. 27.
"If something like that had happened and my mother would have been alive . . . her reaction immediately would have been, 'Are you serious? Oh, please. All this over a wig?' Literally, it was a wig. Let's just all relax," Rivers said. "She would have called Giuliana and yelled at Giuliana, she would have called Kelly and yelled at Kelly and said, 'Stop it.' And she would have listened to them both cry and complain about each other and she'd be like, 'OK, is everyone over it? Now let's go to work and make a funny show.' "