As you’re probably aware, Les Moonves has left CBS for good. This comes after a number of women came forward accusing Moonves of sexual misconduct. While that in itself isn’t exactly news, what’s happening is that it’s having a huge impact on Julie Chen. She is part of two CBS TV programs, which makes her remaining incredibly awkward and is giving rise to speculation that she might not be able to continue to work. Chen issued a statement in which she said:
“I am taking a few days off from ‘The Talk’ to be with my family. I will be back soon and will see you Thursday night on ‘Big Brother’.”
Her co-hosts on The Talk have discussed the fallout from Moonves’ departure on both episodes that have been broadcast this week. And they kind of have to. I mean, it’s an awful and an awkward situation to be in, but The Talk is a CBS program and will need to address the situation. But what does this mean for Julie?
The employment issue is a separate one. Moonves and Chen don’t come as a package deal, and it doesn’t sound like CBS is going to take action against her. Nor should they, as this isn’t her doing. But this could make it even more awkward – mostly because the hosts talk about their personal lives. What is Chen going to talk about? She’s in a tough spot. Let’s say she decides to stay with Moonves,(and I’m not judging her if she does) she will then have to feel like she’s justifying her rationale for staying. On the other hand, if she decides to leave him (and again, no judgment if that’s her decision) then it’s almost like she’s admitting his wrongdoing.
Is it possible to stand by your man when the stakes are so high, and also so public? But it gets even more complicated than that. During The Talk on Tuesday, the co-hosts made their options clear about the fact that CBS may not take their investigation about Moonves public. Sara Gilbert states:
“I feel like it would be difficult to work at a company feeling like things aren’t going to be told if things go wrong or things are done that put women or anyone in a compromising position. You want to feel like its going to become public”.
There’s part of me that agrees, but what about the women that are accusing him of this behavior? Do they not have the right to keep things private? Maybe keeping things in the dark is part of the reason we are in the situation that we’re in. But what does going public do? It damages Moonves’ reputation further – sure. But what about his family? What about Chen? And as I said – what about all the women that he’s wronged?
Whether or not Chen decides to stay on The Talk, remains to be seen. Staying on Big Brother might be an easier assignment for her since the job doesn’t require personal disclosure, but rather just straight reporting on the actions of the participants.