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Media Meltdowns

Radio Host Insists Racist Joke About Mina Kimes Was Supposed To Be Sexist Joke About Mila Kunis

WEEI host Chris Curtis apologizes for bad joke
Image via WEEI

Chris Curtis, executive producer of WEEI's The Greg Hill Show, was suspended for one week after he made this joke during Tuesday's show:

The group was discussing a proposal in Boston to ban small bottles of alcohol, also known as nips, when the conversation turned to the "top five nips." What would've otherwise been a bottom-tier sports radio topic turned notable when Curtis said, "Oh, I'd probably go Mina Kimes."

A reasonable interpretation is that Curtis was making a racist joke by referencing a slur for Japanese people. (Kimes is Korean.) But when contacted by Chad Finn of the Boston Globe on Wednesday, WEEI's management said Curtis intended to say the name of actress Mila Kunis—which would have made the joke sexist instead. It's unclear how this explanation was supposed to help Curtis. Kimes, who temporarily changed her Twitter photo to Kunis, had this reaction:

Curtis made a brief appearance at the beginning of Thursday's show to elaborate on his excuse and make an apology. "In a pathetic, failed attempt at a one-liner, I attempted to bring up Mila Kunis, which was not really that funny—sophomoric and sexist—but for reasons I don't understand, I said Mina Kimes," he said. "That was never the intention for me to say her name." He then apologized to Kimes as well as some other parties (Kunis wasn't mentioned by name) before he left to serve his weeklong suspension.

A one-week suspension for being offensive at WEEI is surprising, since usually that results in a promotion. But really, for this guy to make a joke that can reasonably be parsed as sexist or racist—that feels like a new frontier for bad sports radio.

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