“[T]he one way to make viewers hate you is to say anything bad about an animal.” Studio B anchor Shepard Smith seems to have heightened his animal rights sensitivities somewhat since the bad old days of his “Trampoline Bear.”
Friday, Shepard aired a segment entitled “Lab-Grown Hamburger Patty: Animal Rights Activists Support New Meat.”* During his interview of Dr. Nina Radcliff, he turned to his second banana Jonathan Hunt for his input on this bizarre petri dish meat. Replying with his trademark British macabre wit, Hunt quipped, “All I say is ‘If we’re running out of cows to eat, then let’s just start grilling small puppies.”
Subsequently, as the segment ended, Shep bemusedly looked to Hunt again, querying, “Smeat?” When Hunt unequivocally exclaimed, “No!,” Shep mischievously remarked, “Puppies but not….” Taking the bait injudiciously, a grinning Hunt replied, “Small pups, small puppies anytime: never ‘smeat’!”
Perhaps, explaining the apt end of his infamous Trampoline Bear video airings, Shep responded, “You do know that the one way to make viewers hate you is to say anything bad about an animal.”
When Hunt riposted, “I think they’ve hated me for a very long time,” Shep jested, “This is true! Thank you, Jonathan. The stage manager says, ‘Yes!’”
In an aside to his audience, Shep added, “He doesn’t really eat puppies.”
And, thankfully, Shep doesn’t really exploit Trampoline Bear–any more.
*Studio B – 06/14/13 (@ 3:51 p.m. ET)