‘The Talk’ is back on-air after the massive controversy surrounding Sharon Osbourne’s outburst and subsequent exit.
During the episode, Sheryl took a moment to clarify earlier comments she made about having not spoken with Sharon since the outburst and the text messages Sharon claims she sent.
Monday’s episode of the daytime talk show — the first since Osbourne’s exit— featured remaining co-hosts Underwood, Carrie Ann Inaba, Amanda Kloots and Elaine Welteroth discussing “race and healing” with diversity, equity, inclusion and justice expert Dr. Donald E. Grant. Life coach Dr. Anita Phillips also made an appearance to explore how to heal after a painful event or conversation.
The broadcast opened with a message from Underwood, 57, recorded backstage. “It’s time for an episode of The Talk that will be unlike any other we’ve had before,” she said. “As you may know, during our break, Sharon decided to leave The Talk. We need to process the events of that day and what happened since, so we can get to the healing.”
“Over the next hour, we will honestly discuss what occurred and explore some of our feelings. And we’ll also show you how anyone can become more comfortable discussing important issues and having difficult conversations,” she continued. “By the end of the hour, we want everyone to feel empowered and ready to move forward.”
Asked to reflect on the difficult conversation she had with Osbourne a month ago, Underwood said she hadn’t wanted “to escalate things” in the moment.
“I thought I was having a conversation with a friend, but also I knew I had to be an example,” she said, noting that she “didn’t want to be perceived as the angry Black woman.”
“I wanted to remain calm and remain focused, and it’s difficult to go back to that day because I just feel the trauma,” she said, going on to say she felt “trapped” during the conversation, during which Osbourne asked Underwood to “educate” her and warned her not to cry.
Welteroth, who was present during the exchange in question, also shared her thoughts. “When you go back and watch what happened in that episode, you will see two Black women walking the same tightrope that Black women are walking every single day in the workplace,” she said.
“We knew that we had to stay composed in that situation, even in the face of someone who was A, not listening, and B, who went off the rails into disrespect,” she continued.
Both women also took a moment to address the “false accusations” that have been lobbed against them, framing them as having “attacked a woman on air” as “part of some kind of conspiracy.” (Osbourne previously claimed CBS executives set up the conversation and “blindsided” her.)
“That is absolutely categorically false. And I think it’s really important that people hear that,” said Welteroth, 34.
Underwood also addressed the text messages Osbourne sent her and why she didn’t respond, noting that CBS’ investigation was underway at the time. (During a recent three-part series on her podcast titled “Sharon Walks Away,” Underwood said Osbourne had not called her, and that the two hadn’t spoken. Osbourne, who insisted she had reached out to Underwood, then shared screenshots of text messages she sent her.)
“I want to clear something up. There was a discussion about Sharon and I communicating with each other,” Underwood said on Monday. “I have not spoken to [her], and do not have any phone call, missed or received, that I can find in my phone [from her].”
“But there were text messages sent to me,” she added, noting that she didn’t “speak about or acknowledge those text messages” because she wasn’t sure whether she was allowed to communicate with Osbourne amid the network’s investigation.
As for what their relationship might look like in the future, Underwood said it would depend on Osbourne’s behavior.
“People have asked me, ‘Well, if you see Sharon, what would you do?’ If she greeted me warmly and sincerely, I would give her back the same, because we’ve been on this show for 10 years,” Underwood said. “I want people to understand when you’re friends with somebody you stay friends. And what did Maya Angelou say? When people show you who they are, believe them.”
“The first time,” added Welteroth, as Underwood replied, “Real talk.”
Now that Sharon’s out and the show is back in full-swing, hopefully everyone can move on. This is the most anyone’s talked about ‘The Talk’ since the show’s inception.