Gawker refuses to cater to "Housewives" sense of humor
Things are getting a little too real for Lynda Erkiletian, one of the "Real Housewives of D.C."
A lawyer for the modeling agency owner sent letters to Comedy Central, Gawker and local blogger Carol Joynt last week threatening to sue for defamation after they wickedly riffed on Erkiletian's boast that "we cater to ambassadors and diplomats."
"There wasn't a story written that didn't mention her comment with a little wink-wink, nudge-nudge," Joynt told us Tuesday. She posted her take on the show ("a train wreck"), which included a risque aside about the models followed by "just kidding." Within 24 hours, Joynt received a stern warning from attorney Mark Lane asking her to remove the posting -- which she did -- and asking for an apology, which she also made online.
Lane said he also contacted Comedy Central, which has removed its offending language from its Web site, and Gawker (which called Erkiletian "one of the biggest, high-class" ... er, purveyors of something other than models in Washington), which refused, saying the surreal satiric commentary by Richard Lawson was "meant to be a joke."
"I don't get the humor there," Lane told us. "I don't see how anyone could think it is a joke." Really? Here's Lawson on the D.C. housewives: "All of them are wretched horse monsters from the planet Horsebreath, a place that is dark and cold and full of terror." Nonetheless, Lane said his client was "astonished" by the online treatment and still intends to pursue legal action.
Erkiletian attempted to clarify her remarks in a posting on her Bravo blog: "OK everyone, calm down, and shame on YOU! We are in the nation's capital, an international city, home to Ambassadors, diplomats and dignitaries from all over the world. ... Embassies host cultural and philanthropic events that often include an element of fashion, which is how we 'cater to ambassadors and diplomats.'"
Oh, come on, people! Doesn't everybody know by now that reality shows bear little relation to ... reality?
Joynt said Bravo rookies have no concept of how innocuous comments are manipulated to create ratings drama. "I don't think amateurs can ever appreciate the power of the producer and the edit. The only time you control your image on television is when it is live."
The Reliable Source
August 25, 2010; 1:04 AM ET
Categories: Real Housewives of D.C.
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