Kathy Griffin had a “battle with Bravo” over the Walter Reed hospital episode

This Thursday, the fourth season of Kathy Griffin’s My Life on the D-List will conclude with an episode that follows Kathy’s visit to Walter Reed Army Medical Center. In advance of that episode, Kathy has been doing a number of interviews selling the episode–and talking about how she had to sell the episode to Bravo, which she says didn’t want to dedicate an entire episode to the visit, and also wanted to manipulate the editing to make the visit more positive than it was.

Kathy told The Meridian Star that she’s “never been prouder of an episode,” but that “when I first talked to the Bravo people about it, they were nervous and they said ‘This is a comedy show, and we’re afraid it’s going to be depressing,’ and I said you know, you’re wrong. After going to Afghanistan and Iraq, what it really is, is a story of how people use humor to get through an incredibly difficult time in their life, as well as out-and-out trauma.”

She also said in a separate interview that the network wanted to edit the episode to change the outcome of her performance there, which didn’t go well. “It was the toughest show I’d ever done. Bravo said ‘We kind of want to edit it so you have this triumphant show at the end’,” Kathy told The Connecticut Post, which reports that “Griffin wouldn’t go for it.”

Finally, in a TV Guide interview, she said, “I’m so proud of winning that battle with Bravo — they didn’t want to make it a whole episode. But I’d found that those guys at the hospital — the majority were amputees — just have the sickest sense of humor and were so wanting to laugh and use humor to get through their situation, because that’s how they deal. So I said to Bravo, ‘Go [bleep] yourselves — I’m not doing Frontline here, you know. I’ll still be making a fool of myself and saying inappropriate things. But this’ll be a window into what happens to these people that you’re not gonna see on The [bleeping] Kardashians!'”

Kathy Griffin helps troops heal with laughter [The Meridian Star]
Kathy Griffin tells it like it is [Connecticut Post]
Kathy Griffin Bleeps the Faith [TV Guide]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.