Celebs Who Can't Stand Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy Fallon is probably the nicest, sweetest, and most excitable guy on TV, which means he's probably the right person to host a variety program like The Tonight Show. It seems like every guest who comes onto The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon (and before that, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon) gets a huge ego boost from the former Saturday Night Live star, who tells them their movie, show, album, prepared anecdote, or cute little "Lip Sync Battle" routine is, to paraphrase, "Wow, so great, so amazing, hilarious, just the best!"

Could Fallon be disingenuous? Some of the time, he'd have to be — no human being can love everything with such unbridled enthusiasm. As such, a lot of people find Fallon's schtick (which could all just be his TV persona) to be grating, annoying, and fake. Here are some of the famous people who have not-so-subtly made their negative feelings about Fallon crystal clear.

The Saturday Night Live legend who can't stand Jimmy Fallon

Every major Saturday Night Live cast member has at least one recurring character. Kristen Wiig had Target Lady, Tracy Morgan had Astronaut Jones, and Jimmy Fallon had "Guy Who Ruins Every Sketch He's In With Uncontrollable Laughter." Okay, that wasn't really a character — that was just Fallon. His co-stars were evidently just so funny that Fallon couldn't help breaking character and snickering his way through dozens of sketches.

In 2007, Morgan told Page Six (via The A.V. Club) that he loathed Fallon's habit, referring to it as the "laughing and all that dumb s*** he used to do." Why did Morgan hate it so much? Because it trained the spotlight of the ensemble show squarely on Fallon. "That's taking all the attention off of everybody else and putting it on you, like 'Oh, look at me, I'm the cute one.'" Remarkably, one big takeaway from Morgan's callout of Fallon is the suggestion that Fallon did all that laughing on purpose. How do we know? Morgan said he "told him not to do that s*** in my sketches, and so he never did."

The current late-night talk show host is not a Jimmy Fallon fan

Well, okay, there's another late-night comedy show host who publicly admonished Jimmy Fallon for his lightweight, light-hearted Tonight Show interview with Donald Trump. In September 2016, Samantha Bee used one of her trademark monologues on her TBS show, Full Frontal, to explain why she was so upset with her comedy colleague, as well as his network, NBC, for giving a platform to a candidate who was "playing footsie with fringe groups" and who had been a leading proponent of the notion that former President Barack Obama wasn't born in the United States. "By ignoring that," Bee said, "NBC tacitly condoned a race-baiting demagogue." 

Bee also gave her theories on why Fallon was so willing to have Trump on his show and to make him seem like a good sport for allowing his hair to be fondled. "I guess because ratings matter more than brown people," Bee said. 

"Trump can be a total sweetheart with someone who has no reason to be terrified of him," she added. "I noticed there were no cutaway shots to [house band] the Roots. I wonder why."

The former late-night talk show host was disappointed with Jimmy Fallon

David Letterman, the king of "Stupid Pet Tricks" and "Top 10 Lists," told Vulture in 2017 that he found fault with Fallon's relatively apolitical stance. As the political climate in the U.S. became more contentious before, during, and after the 2016 presidential election, hosts like Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Kimmel ramped up their political and satirical content. But not Fallon, who told Sunday Today that political comedy is "just not what I do." 

True to form, after then-candidate Donald Trump visited The Tonight Show in 2016, Fallon received widespread criticism for not asking Trump many pointed or probing questions. The most notable moment of the interview came when Fallon playfully ruffled the future president's famous hair. In response, Letterman wasn't mad with Fallon, just disappointed. "I think you have an obligation [to ask serious questions]," Letterman said of the Tonight Show host. "Jimmy got a fantastic viral clip out of that." 

Letterman then shared what he would've done if he'd been face-to-face with Trump. "I would have gone to work on Trump," Letterman promised, saying he'd have asked the politician about a number of his controversial decisions and actions.

The comedian who doesn't like weak questions

Jimmy Fallon's job is to entertain and elicit chuckles out of Tonight Show viewers, and he does it with pop culture jokes, celebrity games, and impressions, which are all decidedly "lighter" comedy fare. Louis C.K., on the other hand, is a much more "serious" comedian, delivering self-deprecating routines and jokes about the bleakness of the world. Their opposing styles clashed awkwardly when C.K. guested on a 2017 episode of The Tonight Show. 

"I love napping. I'll probably take a couple more before I got to bed," C.K joked, adding, "I'll take an 11:30 p.m. nap, and go to bed at midnight." Being a good host, Fallon replied with a follow-up question: "You like it better than sleep? Sleep is like the ultimate nap." C.K.'s face immediately twisted into one of repulsion and surprise, perceiving Fallon's response to be incredibly dumb. "That's stupid you said that," C.K. said. "That's such a dumb thing to say." Fallon laughed it off, while C.K. remained smirking, and teased Fallon a bit more before they changed topics.

Louis C.K. hasn't appeared on The Tonight Show since, although that may have less to do with this awkward moment than it does with how his admission of predatory sexual behavior destroyed his career. 

The body-shamed governor can't stand Jimmy Fallon

Look, it's a lot of work to turn out an hour-long show five days a week. This is to say that not every moment of airtime can pack innovative, forward-thinking, thought-provoking comedy. Sometimes, something puerile and crass will work its way into the mix — like a fat joke. When former New Jersey governor Chris Christie ran for the 2016 Republican nomination for president, comedians made countless jokes about how the man was not exactly Obama-thin. 

In September 2015, Christie appeared on The Tonight Show and told a story about how he'd spent the Fourth of July with fellow politicians Marco Rubio and Mitt Romney and their families. Christie mentioned that the whole group took a boat to go grab some ice cream ... which is when Fallon started riffing. He quipped that Christie must have been very excited, and then he pretended to be Christie in that moment, cheering and pumping his fists. (It's "funny" because he is overweight, and overweight people must  love food.) 

Christie was left speechless ... until he said goodnight to the studio audience, and then got up and tried to leave the stage. Fallon protested, and Christie returned to finish the interview.

The president who got his hair and feathers ruffled

Jimmy Fallon is far less "political" than some of his competitors, so when then-presidential candidate Donald Trump appeared on The Tonight Show in Sept. 2016, Fallon approached the interview with entertainment in mind. Rather than grill Trump on politics, Fallon asked lighthearted questions, and tousled Trump's famously uncontrollable hair. 

Social media came unglued, eviscerating Fallon for what they equated to an endorsement of the candidate's controversial platform. "I did not do it to 'normalize' him or to say I believe in his political beliefs or any of that stuff," Fallon told The Hollywood Reporter's Awards Chatter podcast in 2018, even tearing up on occasion. "I'm just trying to make a funny show." After the election, Fallon lost viewers to his more politically-inclined colleagues. "I'm sorry if I made anyone mad. And, looking back, I would do it differently," Fallon added.

Well, he did make somebody mad: Donald Trump. After Fallon's podcast appearance, the president called out the host on Twitter. "Jimmy Fallon is now whimpering to all that he did the famous 'hair show' with me (where he seriously messed up my hair), & that he would have now done it differently because it is said to have 'humanized" me-he is taking heat," Trump wrote, adding that after the episode in question aired, Fallon "called & said 'monster ratings.' Be a man Jimmy!"

The British actor armed with helium balloons

The late, great Alan Rickman — best known as Hans Gruber from Die Hard or Professor Snape from the Harry Potter movies, depending on your age — didn't admit to an out-and-out hatred of Jimmy Fallon prior to his death in 2016. But he apparently did take umbrage, albeit very lightly, to a Tonight Show segment Fallon made in which Rickman was the butt of the joke. Fallon is pretty good at impressions, and so is big-time actor Benedict Cumberbatch. Both guys can do a pretty good Rickman, and when Cumberbatch guested on The Tonight Show in 2013 — one day after Rickman stopped by — they held a "Rickman-Off" to decide who could deliver the best imitation of the beloved character actor. 

Cut to 2015, when Rickman visited The Tonight Show. "The last time I was on this show, you asked me if I was aware that people impersonated me," Rickman said, before mentioning the "Rickman-Off." He then "punished" Fallon by making him conduct the interview as planned ... while both sucked on helium-filled balloons. It made both the real Rickman and the Rickman imitator sound very silly.

The disrespected Australian rapper who can't stand Jimmy Fallon

Jimmy Fallon's The Tonight Show occasionally runs a desk bit called "Do Not Play." Show researchers track down what they believe to be the worst records from around the world and then play a snippet. The laughs come at the expense of the musicians behind those songs, who — surprise! — are actually real people with real feelings. In 2015, "Do Not Play" featured the 2009 viral hit "Take U to Da Movies" by Australian rapper BANGS, also known as Ur Boy Bangs. Fallon laughed about how bad the song was, and then briefly imitated the rapper responsible for it. 

Well, if you diss BANGS, BANGS will not hesitate to diss you back. Just a few days after Fallon made fun of him on TV, the rapper released a diss track called "Do Not Watch." How did he put it together so fast? He used the same backing track from "Take U to Da Movies," then added in new anti-Fallon lyrics like, "I should sue your a** for playing my song at your show, but I'm not doing that 'cause your broken hand looks gross" (referring to a then-recent Fallon finger injury), and "At least I'm taking ladies to the movies, but who you taking? Nobody." Well, actually, Fallon is married and has two daughters, so he has plenty of people to go see Minions with, but still — mic drop.

The late-night talk show writer who thinks Jimmy Fallon is a joke

Despite getting pushed out of his job hosting The Tonight Show in 2010, which was passed to Jimmy Fallon four years later, Conan O'Brien has never expressed animosity toward his talk show successor. But long-time O'Brien collaborator Andrés du Bouchet, who wrote and acted in comedy bits on Late Night, The Tonight Show, and Conan, had some thoughts. In April 2015, du Bouchet went on a brutal Twitter rant, eviscerating Fallon, his Tonight Show, and its brand of inoffensive, party-style humor, which includes playing games, singing, and reading viewer tweets. Du Bouchet ultimately deleted the tweets (and apologized), but not before outlets like Uproxx captured them forever.

"Comedy in 2015 needs a severe motherf***ing shakeup. No celebrities, no parodies, no pranks, no mash-ups or hashtag wars," he tweeted out. "Prom King Comedy. That's what I call all this s***. You've let the popular kids appropriate the very art form that helped you deal." He noted, "None of the funniest stuff ever involved celebrity cameos."

Du Bouchet's boss addressed the issue on Twitter as well, writing, "I wish one of my writers would focus on making my show funnier instead of tweeting stupid things about the state of late night comedy."

The Olympian who called him a 'wimp'

Before Caitlyn Jenner came out as trans, Jimmy Fallon made a lot of terrible jokes about her face and plastic surgery on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon." During the 2011 holiday season, Fallon compared Jenner's appearance to that of Claymation characters in Christmas specials. The following year, he cracked that her face was made of "100% recycled material."

In a 2013 episode of his show, Fallon recalled how he turned tail and tried to run when he spotted Jenner at NBC's commissary during the network's Olympic coverage. However, he didn't make it. According to Fallon, Jenner exchanged pleasantries with him, but before they parted, she told the talk show host, "Quit saying s*** about my face." Fallon recalled, "I felt like I was going to vomit. I felt like I was going to throw up."

Jenner was later asked to appear on Fallon's show. During an episode of "Keeping Up With the Kardashians," she told Kim Kardashian that she didn't want to do his show because she was sick of Fallon's fixation on her face. "If you don't go on the show, it's gonna make you look like you can't even face him," Kardashian pointed out. Jenner ultimately decided to use the opportunity to turn the tables on Fallon by going on the show and roasting him to his face. After she admitted to being angry during their commissary conversation, she mocked Fallon for having a weak handshake and said she could tell he was terrified. "You were such a wimp," she scoffed.

He was too prudish for this comedian

In September 2023, Rolling Stone published an exposé about the allegedly toxic work environment on the set of "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon." Former employees claimed that Jimmy Fallon dropped his affable, aw-shucks persona behind the scenes and was prone to suddenly becoming snappish and ill-tempered. Writers for the show also said that they received deflating feedback from Fallon, with one producing a note he allegedly wrote. "Ugh, lame. What is going on with you? You've outdone yourself," it read.

The Rolling Stone piece inspired Twitter users to start digging up old dirt on Fallon. New Yorker archivist Erin Overbey's contribution was an excerpt from Tina Fey's memoir "Bossypants." In it, Fey recalls how Amy Poehler immediately let Fallon know that she was not going to kowtow to him just because she was the new kid in the "Saturday Night Live" writers' room. 

Poehler was ready to let her raunch flag fly upon her arrival, but apparently one of the newbie's crass jokes offended Fallon. "[He] turned to her and in a faux-squeamish voice said, 'Stop that! It's not cute! I don't like it,'" Fey wrote. "Amy dropped what she was doing, went black in the eyes for a second, and wheeled around on him. 'I don't f***ing care if you like it.'" Poehler seemed offended that Fallon was expecting 'cute' comedy from the comedienne. However, it seems that Poehler was able to get over her seeming annoyance with Fallon's prudishness after she exerted her dominance, and Fey claimed that their relationship was amicable overall. 

The actor who just wanted to tell her story

The Rolling Stone piece about Jimmy Fallon's alleged ill-treatment of "The Tonight Show" employees reminded some readers that he's also had some uncomfortable moments with his guests over the years. In response to a tweet about the allegations, one person shared a clip of "Fifty Shades of Grey" star Dakota Johnson saying to Fallon, "Aren't you supposed to let people talk on this show?" The Twitter user joked, "And once again Dakota Johnson was right ... " This was seemingly a reference to Johnson's awkward 2019 appearance on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" – a year after Johnson and Ellen DeGeneres publicly argued over why DeGeneres didn't attend Johnson's birthday party, BuzzFeed published a report about various negative experiences "The Ellen DeGeneres Show" employees had at work.

It seems that some Twitter users now believe Johnson can sense when there's something dark lurking underneath the friendly facade of talk show hosts, hence her decision to call them out on live TV. "She's always at the scene of the crime. The power of being a second gen nepo baby," one person tweeted. "Oh they are gonna stop inviting her to talk shows I fear," another wrote.

The clip that went viral was from Johnson's 2018 appearance on "The Tonight Show." Fallon seemingly thought he was being funny by constantly interrupting her to ask questions as she was trying to share a story about her dog getting sprayed by a skunk. (Ain't he a stinker?)

The View co-host who was disappointed with a dance segment

Jimmy Fallon ticked off a lot of people when he invited TikTok star Addison Rae to appear on "The Tonight Show" in 2021. He had Rae teach him eight different dances that were popular on TikTok at the time, but the problem was that not one of them were dances of her own original creation. "The View" co-host Sunny Hostin tweeted a clip of Rae performing the choreography, which she had learned by watching other TikTokers. "This is a miss @jimmyfallon. Let's give credit to the Black creators," Hostin wrote.

Hostin's tweet sparked an argument among her followers over whether Fallon's decision to film the segment was a slap in the face to the dances' creators or no big deal. "Why not celebrate the actual individuals that created these dances," one person wrote. "Sad to see all these white people in these comments being like 'It's not about race.' It ain't about race to YOU. To BIPOC, it's always about race," another tweet read.

Fallon apparently realized that he was in the wrong because he later invited some of the original choreographers to appear virtually on his show and perform their dances. They included Keara Wilson, creator of the wildly popular "Savage" challenge, and the "Up" dance duo Mya Nicole Johnson and Chris Cotter. The latter spoke about their work being acknowledged by Cardi B, proving that some stars actually do their research before jumping on a social media craze.

The purportedly unimpressed talk show predecessor

Jay Leno stirred up controversy by refusing to go gentle into that good night when he first vacated his hosting chair on "The Tonight Show" in 2009. First, he decided to stick around at NBC and started hosting a new variety show, "The Jay Leno Show," after Conan O'Brien took over his old job. As recapped by Hollywood Insider, a lot of hand-wringing over the less-than-stellar ratings of both shows ensued, followed by some schedule shuffling that doomed O'Brien's iteration of "The Tonight Show." After just seven months, he was out and Leno was back in.

This is where Jimmy Fallon comes in. When Leno retired in 2014, it was Fallon's turn to see if he could keep his butt planted in the hosting chair. If the National Enquirer is to be believed, Leno thought Fallon would be easy enough to remove from the show. "Jay feels Fallon is a lightweight," a source told the tabloid in 2014. He was even reportedly thinking about staging another late-night coup. "Jay is biding his time, confident that Jimmy will fail like Conan," another source dished. "Then, if the network comes back to him, he'd play hard to get, or hold out for a massive salary increase for himself — and his entire staff." This never happened, but we can't help but wonder if Fallon was at all concerned when Leno returned to "The Tonight Show" in 2015 and delivered the opening monologue.