Eight months after the longtime rivals said they had buried the hatchet in their feud, trouble has stirred up again — with Stern slamming Williams for making it into the Radio Hall of Fame before him and Williams telling Stern, “stop hating on me!”
It all started on Monday’s episode of Stern’s SiriusXM show, when the 66-year-old Shock Jock — while talking about the Critics Choice Awards — began ranting about the award show’s failure to recognize radio as a category.
In the midst of his critiques, Stern made a dig at Williams for being inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in 2011, a full year before he was.
“No offense to Wendy Williams, but they put Wendy Williams in before me,” Stern said.
Williams didn’t take too lightly to the dig.
On Tuesday, Williams responded to Stern in her “Hot Topics” segment, asking him to cease fire.
“Now you looky here Howard, I’m tired of fighting with you, man,” Williams, 55, said. “Why do you always have to fight with me? Because you think I’m the low-lying fruit? Why? … Why are you and I always fighting? I wasn’t fighting with you, I’m minding my own business, trying to watch The Bachelor.”
“Don’t hate on me because I got in before you,” Williams said. “I know the only reason I got in is that I had a new talk show. I went from radio, successful, to TV with my own show. You haven’t done that. …. Howard, all I am saying is, keep your hundreds of thousands of dollars, your beautiful wife Beth, all of those animals that you will rescue and be happy, man. And stop hating on me. Because I don’t hate you!”
She went on to agree with Stern’s frustration that radio is often overlooked, praising the art form before admitting that she too was surprised she made the cut before Stern did.
“Only real radio heads understand how important radio is in life,” Williams said. “You turn it on, we’re in the car with you, we’re making you laugh, we’re telling you stories. I was in love with radio before I got this chair. … People in entertainment, they look over us. … They throw us away. And radio really is the most brilliant invention ever, even before TV. Because radio makes you use your imagination. This TV, everything is laid out in front of you.”
“You know what, Howard, I was offended the night I got my award,” Williams added, calling Stern the “King of All Media” and “a hero to me and to many people up in here.”
“There’s nothing you can say. Nothing at all,” Williams said. “I agree he was supposed to be there before me. He was in before I was. I’m racing up and down the turnpike, trying to grab bones for $9,000 a year, listening to Howard through five states, cackling and laughing and shaping my adulthood. Personally and professionally, I admire you Howard Stern. They were wrong for that.”
Both Williams and Stern have had long careers in radio. Stern began his career in 1976 and Williams in 1989. She moved over to television in 2008, leaving her syndicated radio show behind the following year.
Throughout it all, the two personalities have had a tense relationship, trading barbs back and forth in the press.
In March, Williams made a dig at Stern, saying he lost his edge and was “so Hollywood” — to which he responded by calling her a “jealous bitch.”
“That was me at my worst. I thought she was saying that I was a piece of s— and I sucked. But as [I hear it] now, I don’t see it as an offense at all,” Stern shared with the outlet, adding that he had officially pulled the rant from his archives. “If ‘Hollywood’ means that I’ve evolved in some way and the show has changed, then yeah, she hit the nail on the head.”
While speaking to her audience, Williams revealed that her “heart was so broken” amid their disagreement and said that even without an apology, Stern would remain one of the “most influential people” to have shaped her career.
“By the way, Howard, I read the article with you on the cover of The Hollywood Reporter, and I saw that you mentioned me and that you apologized,” she said on her talk show. “Howard, you know what, if you never apologized to me ever in your life, you would still be one of the most influential people in shaping my career — you and Oprah, that’s it.”
Williams accepted Stern’s apology on her talk show. “The idea that you apologized … I love him!” Williams said. “My heart was so broken when he was fighting with me because I wasn’t fighting with him!”