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Bowen Yang Called Out the Media for Confusing Him With Joel Kim Booster. Then It Happened Again

On this week’s episode of Las Culturistas, the culture podcast hosted by Bowen Yang and Matt Rogers, Yang called out The Hollywood Reporter for mixing him up with friend and fellow comedian Joel Kim Booster—in an article about Julianna Margulies’ racist comments, no less. It wasn’t the first time. And in the hours that followed the episode, it wasn’t the last.

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During the weekly “I Don’t Think So, Honey” segment on Las Culturistas, SNL‘s Bowen Yang and fellow actor/comedian Matt Rogers each take 60 seconds to go off about something annoying or stupid that’s happening in pop culture. This week on the podcast (which has received critical acclaim), Rogers used his 60 seconds to call out Julianna Margulies for a whole sampler platter of offensive comments she recently made, which included racist remarks. Yang added, “Also, I don’t think so, honey, Hollywood Reporter for still confusing me and Joel Kim Booster in an article about this whole Julianna Margulies thing. An article that is reporting on racism.”

Booster shared the error in THR‘s reporting on his X account last week:

As both Booster and Yang have noted, this is actually the SECOND time THR has mixed up the two. In 2019, THR shared a feature story about Yang, who had recently joined the cast of SNL, accompanied by a photo of Booster.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the end of the story. Yesterday, Out published an article titled “Bowen Yang & Joel Kim Booster Are Tired of The Hollywood Reporter Mixing Them Up,” in which the author included a breakdown of the above—and proceeded to confuse Yang and Booster AGAIN. (Out has since updated the article.) The racism is so casual that it’s transcending self-parody and starting to feel deliberately ignorant, and that’s a generous read.

As Rogers noted on Las Culturistas, one of the most basic jobs of media outlets and trade publications like THR is to correctly name its subjects. Of course, given massive ongoing layoffs in media and an increasingly dire industry landscape, it seems that more and more outlets are cutting costs by hiring less experienced writers and treating the jobs of editors as gratuitous at best.

It’s been noted to death elsewhere, but Bowen Yang and Joel Kim Booster do not look alike. At all. Literally the least you can do as a publication is to get someone’s name right.

(featured image: Monica Schipper, WireImage)

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Britt Hayes
Britt Hayes (she/her) is an editor, writer, and recovering film critic with over a decade of experience. She has written for The A.V. Club, Birth.Movies.Death, and The Austin Chronicle, and is the former associate editor for ScreenCrush. Britt's work has also been published in Fangoria, TV Guide, and SXSWorld Magazine. She loves film, horror, exhaustively analyzing a theme, and casually dissociating. Her brain is a cursed tomb of pop culture knowledge.

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