Michael Patrick King, creator of the CBS hit sitcom “2 Broke Girls” has said it is acceptable for him to insult minorities on his show because he is gay.
“I'm gay! I'm putting in gay stereotypes every week! I don't find it offensive, any of this. I find it comic to take everybody down, which is what we are doing. Being a comedy writer gives you permission to be an outsider and poke fun at what people think about other people,” King aggressively told reporters at the Television Critics Association winter press tour on Wednesday.
The stereotypical characters at the center of the controversy were: Earl, a mature black man who uses ‘jive’ jargon; Han Lee, a Korean man who speaks in broken English; and a perverse Ukrainian man named Oleg.
“If you talk about stereotypes, every character, when it's born, is a stereotype. A blonde and a brunette, which has certain stigmas as well, which we've tried to defuse and grow,” King told reporters, continuing to defend himself. “I don't think the ethnic characters are one-note. I think the characters were the first note.”
“The characters are dimensional, but they're shown in segments of 21 minutes, which limits the dimensions you can see,” King added.
King, trying to avoid further questions on the subject, vowed to add layers to the characters as the show progressed.
“I will call you in five years, and you will have accrued enough time to figure out if these characters became fully fleshed-out,” King, who was also a writer on HBO’s “Sex And the City,” told reporters.
King reiterated that the show’s main focus was the two young struggling women, not the other ensemble characters.
“It's called 2 Broke Girls, our main job is to take care of the girls. They are the engine, they are the heart, they are the soul and they are the acid. So we're always going to throw to them first. The other characters will grow and grow and grow, as they do with ensembles,” King explained.
CBS’ entertainment president, Nina Tassler, also defended the show’s crass tone at the event.
“First of all, I think that they're an equal opportunity offender. Everybody gets digs. The comment in our dialogue with Michael is, ‘Yes, continue to dimensionalize, continue to get more specific, continue to build them out’," Tassler told reporters.
“I personally am thrilled with everything we're doing,” King boasted to reporters.