Update Tuesday, February 8 at 1:33 a.m.: Good news for fans of Leslie Jones’s Olympic commentary: NBC said it doesn’t want her gone. “We have resolved the situation,” Greg Hughes, a spokesman for the network, told The Associated Press. “She is free to do her social media posts as she has done in the past. She is a super fan of the Olympics and we are super fans of her.” According to Hughes, it was a “third-party error” that caused Jones’s videos to be blocked, not NBC. After she wrote on social media that she would not stay anywhere she’s “not welcomed,” the comedian stopped posting clips of the Olympics. We hope she still got a chance to watch Nathan Chen skate to a world record in the men’s short program. “The ice is his bitch,” she astutely observed in 2018. Who else is going to give us commentary like that?
Original story follows.
Doesn’t NBC want free celebrity Olympics coverage? Shouldn’t it be into someone sharing all that Peacock can offer? And isn’t it great that its star sports commentator gives non-sportspeople an entry point into these events? Apparently not! Leslie Jones has been posting her very funny Olympics broadcast reaction videos since 2016, when her Rio hype on Twitter got her an official NBC Olympics correspondent gig back when she starred on Saturday Night Live. But Jones posted to Instagram early on February 7 announcing that the Beijing Winter Olympics 2022 “should be my last Olympics I live tweet” because “they block my videos and they get folks who think they can do it like me.” Jones doesn’t say who “they” is, but she had tagged NBC Sports on Twitter hours before, saying they “think they can replace me with just anyone.” “I’m tired of fighting them,” she continued on Instagram. “I love the athletes and they love me doing it. And I know y’all love it. But now it’s just gotten too hard. And no one is fighting for or with me. Soooo I guess I’ll leave it to the professionals.” NBC did not immediately respond to Vulture’s requests for comment.
The loss of Jones’s Olympics videos will mean a loss of such classics as her yelling “What the fuck?!” at skeleton and making the correct point that curling is just ice marbles. If NBC gets in the way of this Olympic gold, it will be the worst thing the network has done since that American Kath & Kim remake.