Los Angeles Times - - COMPANY TOWN -

E! Net­work Septem­ber 2010 to present

Con­tro­versy: “Fash­ion Po­lice” was a solid hit un­til the show’s ma­tri­arch, Joan Rivers, died in Septem­ber, leav­ing E! with­out the fiery co­me­dian to lead com­men­tary about celebri­ties and their fash­ion choices. Co­me­dian Kathy Grif­fin was tapped as a new co-host, and other co-hosts, in­clud­ing Rivers’ daugh­ter Melissa, re­turned. But co-host Gi­u­liana Ran­cic came un­der fire in Fe­bru­ary af­ter the an­nual Os­cars broad­cast, when she said Dis­ney Chan­nel star Zen­daya’s dread­locks looked as though she smelled of “patchouli oil and weed.” Some Zen­daya fans in­ter­preted the re­mark as racist, lead­ing Ran­cic to apol­o­gize. Grif­fin and co-host Kelly Os­bourne quit the se­ries.

The busi­ness stakes: E!, mostly known as a des­ti­na­tion for celebri­ty­fu­eled re­al­ity shows and pop cul­ture, has moved to­ward a broader ar­ray of pro­grams in the last year. “Fash­ion Po­lice” was al­ready los­ing view­ers af­ter Rivers’ death, and the de­ba­cle caused by Ran­cic made it even more ex­pend­able.

Af­ter­math: The net­work de­cided to put the show on hold un­til Septem­ber. Ran­cic, Melissa Rivers and stylist Brad Goreski are ex­pected to con­tinue when the show re­turns in the fall.

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