Reggie Watts breaks down in tears on The Late Late Show with James Corden while discussing the emotional impact of the killing of black Americans. Corden has hosted the CBS program since 2015. The comedian is known for his entertaining segments, like “Carpool Karaoke,” “Spill Your Guts Or Fill Your Guts,” and “Crosswalk: The Musical,” among others. Musician and comedian Watts gained widespread attention on the program Comedy Bang Bang on IFC before starring alongside Corden on The Late Late Show as leader of the Late Late Band. Watts also composed the theme music.
For more than a week, protests have erupted across American cities, and now the rest of the globe, in reaction to the murders of George Floyd, Eric Garner, Breonna Taylor, Amaud Aubrey among others. Public outcry intensifies by the day as communities, citizens, and Hollywood reacts to the current protests as an extension of the Black Lives Matter movement.
On Twitter, Corden shared the opening of last night’s show. In place of the usual quarantine-segment, “Three Things To Cheer You Up,” Corden acknowledged the opener had no place in the show as protests break out and call for systemic change increase. Corden asks, “Why is my voice relevant?” Addressing white people, he states, “This is our problem. How can the black community dismantle a problem they didn’t create.” Corden delivered a respectful address, shifting attention from his voice, as he recognizes his privilege, calling all to stand alongside the oppressed. He called on program co-star Watts, who discusses how his skin color shaped his world and experience.
Speaking to Corden via video conference call, as production on The Late Late Show continues to be done from home, Watts said: “Feeling so much, simultaneously, it’s crazy. … I have this history in the black community in the midwest I don’t access a lot because there is a lot of pain and emotion there. So, it’s hard. There is so much happening. And I want to use my platform for good. … It’s tough.” In the segment, as seen in the video above, Corden looks visibly distraught, shaking his head, and said, “I’m so sorry that you’re feeling this. I’d give anything to be in there with my arm around you.” Watts went on to say:
“It’s tough. I get set off by anything, and I feel like there’s also a pressure, you know? ‘Well if you’re of color, you have to represent your whole crew.’ I grew up all my life, really fighting, to just be a human being and not have people affected by the way they look and I also know that’s just a reality. So, I’m trying my best to process and be responsible with the platform I have but mostly, I’m feeling so much.”
The moments of shared vulnerability between Watts and the usually jolly Corden underscore the attitudes and empathy needed between communities and the work the white community must do to amplify black voices. Watts rightfully displays no shame at his emotional expression, warranted as more than a hundred American cities join protests in solidarity over the killing of George Floyd by an officer of the Minneapolis Police Department, as three officers looked on. The protests show no sign of slowing down. Both host Corden and bandleader Watts made it clear this is a fight from which they will not back down.
Source: The Late Late Show
Arrowverse Stars Reunite To Poke Fun At Legends of Tomorrow
About The Author
Maki Zatychies is a freelance writer based in Ontario, Canada, with a BAh in English and an MA in creative non-fiction from the University of Guelph. Alex Trebek is her lord, and she worships at the altar of Jeopardy! Her consumption of media, literature, and pop culture ranges from excessive to compulsive. She lives in a hobbit hole with her mini-Rex rabbit, Sawyer.