Post Mortems

Blockbuster Refers to James Corden as a 'Bully and a Menace,' But Not Because of #OmeletGate

James Corden 'Blockbuster' Joke

The new Netflix comedy Blockbuster takes a lighthearted swipe at James Corden — a swipe that, in light of recent headlines, may be interpreted in a way other than the series intended.

Midway through Season 1’s sixth episode, “Parental Control,” video store associate Connie (played by Olga Merediz) is struggling to get through an evening shift. When her coworker Eliza (Melissa Fumero) points out that it’s only 7 pm, Connie tells her that she’s usually asleep by that point, having one of her reoccurring nightmares about Corden.

“Don’t let the accent fool you,” she warns. “He’s a bully! And a menace!”

The episode’s release comes just one week week after the Late Late Show host was forced to address allegations that he bullied the staff at a New York restaurant after they failed to deliver his wife an egg yolk omelet. The timing, however, is purely coincidental.

“We wrote this over a year ago, then shot it in Vancouver at the end of February, so this was way before anything [in the news],” series creator Vanessa Ramos tells TVLine. “[The Late Late Show] for whatever reason felt like something the Connie character would watch” — a character who, like Ramos, has a tendency to fall asleep in front of the TV.

“As a kid, I remember my parents would watch Cheers. If I fell asleep with Cheers on, I’d have a dream and Ted Danson would be in it,” Ramos recalls. “When that joke was pitched, it just felt so naturally Connie, and it was more about the Carpool Karaoke angle — the ‘Carpool Karaoke night terrors’ [punchline]. We didn’t think twice about it.”

With that said, Ramos is aware the joke will strike a different chord in the wake of #OmeletGate. “It’s a very interesting thing to have this light on it,” she says. “It’s going to hit different for people, but our intention was nothing of the sort.”