It’s a sentence we never thought we’d write just a few months ago, but:
Ellen DeGeneres may not be long for the television world.
Several weeks after returning to the air — amid an embarrassing and revealing workplace scandal — we’re now learning that the comedian’s talk show is struggling.
In nearly every important area.
According to Buzzfeed News, The Ellen DeGeneres Show is "losing advertisers, struggling to book A-list celebrities, and suffering a dip in ratings during what is usually the busiest time of year," writes this often-reliable outlet.
Buzzfeed News, of course, is the same publication that spoke to over a dozen former Ellen staffers.
It reports this summer that these staffers were exposed to microaggression, racism and various types of sexism during their time on set.
They complained of a toxic workplace culture and mainly point the finger at three of the program’s executive producers.
These producers have since been fired, but Ellen’s reputation has also taken a sizable hit because it’s her name on the billboard and she’s the one in charge of the show.
A multitude of reports in the months since this initial bombshell have painted Ellen in an even more negative light, too.
She supposedly sent ugly audience members to the back of the crowd and has allegedly been rude to guests any time cameras were not rolling.
With these rumors running rampant, Buzzfeed says advertising dollars are drying up, which has had a trickle down effect on the show.
Employees aren’t able to produce as much new content, for example, because their budget has been drying up.
“We’re trying to be a content house, but we have no content,” one employee told Buzzfeed.
Loyal and/or astute viewers may have also noticed of late that Ellen isn’t giving away fancy vacations this year as part of her annual "12 Days of Giveaways."
There’s also the rather pressing issue of this:
No one wants to appear on the program!
“I wouldn’t set up anyone on her show right now to do anything that could possibly cause them more negative headlines,” one publicist told BuzzFeed News, adding:
“You have to tread so carefully with your clients and your clients’ reputations, so you don’t want to put your client in any line of fire sympathizing with someone that any community or anyone would feel bad about.
"We’re not going to align anyone with Ellen.”
DeGeneres acknowledged all the allegations against her and her fellow executives on the September premiere.
"I learned that things happened that never should have happened," she said on air.
“I want to say I am so sorry to the people who are affected," Ellen continued in her premiere monologue.
"I know that I am in a position of privilege and power and I realize that with that comes responsibility. And I take responsibility for what happens at my show. This is The Ellen DeGeneres Show.”
Ellen noted that “a lot of conversations” have taken place since the accusations started to emerge this spring.
She added that “necessary changes” were made for the improvement of her daytime talk show’s future… and that today marked the start of a “new chapter."
Earlier in the summer, DeGeneres also addressed all the troubling allegations via a YouTube video.
She sounded sincere at the time, but it may have been a case of too little, way too late.
“On day one of our show, I told everyone in our first meeting that The Ellen DeGeneres Show would be a place of happiness – no one would ever raise their voice, and everyone would be treated with respect,” Ellen said on July 30.
“Obviously, something changed, and I am disappointed to learn that this has not been the case.
"And for that, I am sorry."
Will the talk show even see a another season after this madness?
“This feels like our make-it-or-break-it moment," the aforementioned employee tells Buzzeed, referencing the program’s future.
"This will be our biggest report card. If we pick up sponsors by the new year, then we’re cooking, we’ll be fine, and we’ll sell kindness in a bottle.
"But if we fail that report card, who knows.”