For years now it has seemed like television host Piers Morgan's true passion has been insulting celebrities, from mocking them on his show to beefing with them on Twitter.
And it now seems even a celebrity's death is not off-limits: In the wake of the recent passing of his CNN predecessor, Larry King, Morgan issued a tone-deaf Twitter tribute to the late television icon that has left many people gasping.
Morgan issued his acidic tribute just hours after King's death on January 23.
Larry King was a hero of mine until we fell out after I replaced him at CNN & he said my show was ‘like watching yo… https://t.co/B9284Z3x4Y— Piers Morgan (@Piers Morgan)1611407944.0
"Larry King was a hero of mine until we fell out after I replaced him at CNN & he said my show was 'like watching your mother-in-law go over a cliff in your new Bentley.' (He married 8 times so a mother-in-law expert) But he was a brilliant broadcaster & masterful TV interviewer."
King hosted Larry King Live on CNN from 1985 until 2010.
The show, which made King a household name, featured interviews with everyone from politicians and celebrities to psychics and UFO conspiracy theorists. King quickly became known as a skilled interviewer, especially of A-list celebrities, and his show became a go-to for celebrities promoting a project or looking to give an exclusive interview.
When the show changed hands to Piers Morgan in 2010, however, it gained a different, more sensationalist reputation from Morgan's caustic style. King's open and personable environment became one where Morgan frequently insulted celebrities on air and went so far as to issue on-air bans for some, including Madonna and Hugh Grant.
His version of the show, Piers Morgan Live, lasted just four years, and was canceled in 2014.
On Twitter, Morgan's insulting comments on King's death drew widespread outrage.
Say, @piersmorgan, it's okay to have thoughts you don't express https://t.co/uDdbn0lCUE— Tom Nichols (@Tom Nichols)1611425262.0
The biggest insult to Larry King was you taking over his iconic show and being terrible at it. Also, stop being thi… https://t.co/UfIguDWl4p— Wajahat Ali (@Wajahat Ali)1611420538.0
Larry King was many things — accurate reviewer now among them. https://t.co/9p4ByqTcdp— Kara Swisher (@Kara Swisher)1611424620.0
@piersmorgan The fact that you had to wait till Larry king passed, to post this drivel speaks volumes of your chara… https://t.co/efhp2ULmD4— Morales Acosta (@Morales Acosta)1611410541.0
Society if piers morgan stopped existing https://t.co/YhdQBTktmx— mike (@mike)1611418004.0
Piers Morgan claims he meant this as a light-hearted tribute, and you know what, I do feel fonder about Larry King… https://t.co/NWIptM25fd— Todd in the Shadows (@Todd in the Shadows)1611423289.0
@piersmorgan https://t.co/ZQFNkF1euS— Manoka (@Manoka)1611410924.0
This is the craziest RIP Bozo tweet I ever seen lmaooooooo oh my God man https://t.co/OynPPuXMst— Simon Phoenix (@Simon Phoenix)1611411073.0
Larry King was a hero of mine until he owned me into outer space. I am sending this tweet from Mars https://t.co/FPxR83FYMz— Casey Toner (@Casey Toner)1611437683.0
Since the cancellation of Piers Morgan Live, Morgan has since become known as a provocateur, often parroting racist and transphobic right-wing talking points and fighting on-air with his colleagues on the UK morning show Good Morning Britain, where he is currently a cohost.