While having a talk with actress Ashley Park, Jimmy Kimmel compared BTS’s hot popularity to the Covid-19 pandemic. His remark immediately caused him to receive intense criticism.
Recently, actress Ashley Park, who stared in “Emily in Paris”, appeared as a guest on the broadcast of “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on January 20th. During their talk, MC Jimmy Kimmel made a comparison, saying BTS fever was similar to the Covid-19 pandemic. His remark then caused a backlash from the community of BTS fans (ARMYs).
Everything started when Jimmi Kimmel mentioned when actress Ashley Park performed BTS’s song “Dynamite” in “Emily in Paris – Season 2”. The MC said, “You sang a BTS song in the drama, what happened after that? We once invited BTS to our show and their fans even went camping outside the filming site. There might be a few of them left in the parking lot waiting for the next time BTS shows up. They were completely crazy for those guys.”
When Ashley Park mentioned BTS’s fandom name “ARMY”, Kimmel continued, “Yes. You have to be careful with the ‘armys’ because they can attack you”. The MC of “Jimmy Kimmel Live” had done a wordplay with BTS’s fandom name “ARMY” and the real “military army”. Then, when the actress confessed that she is also one of the ARMYs, MC Jimmy Kimmel replied, “Oh, then you won’t be attacked.”
The actress of Emily in Paris shared that she didn’t realize how much of a BTS’s fan she was until she performed the song “Dynamite” in the Netflix series. Ashley Park was both anxious and excited before the day this scene was filmed. Luckily everything went well. After the second season of Emily in Paris was released, BTS members V and RM posted the snippets of Ashley performing Dynamite on their personal Instagram. This makes her extremely proud. Jimmy Kimmel commented that he could tell she was getting crazy about that right now.
After appearing on her idols’ Instagram feeds, Ashley felt that she could not think, could not move her body nor speak normally. At first, she thought it was because she was too shocked by the fact that she was noticed by BTS. But in fact, Ashley had the Omicron variant of Covid-19 and those were the symptoms as she was infected. Jimmy Kimmel then said, “You thought it was BTS fever.” Ashley Park agreed, and Jimmy Kimmel added: “Both are very dangerous. You’re lucky to come out of those alive.”
Jimmy Kimmel jokingly used the word “fever” which means a fever caused by illness but also describes extreme excitement. However, this joke sparked negative reactions from BTS’s fandom. Since the outbreak of the deadly virus around the world, Asians have continued to be the victims of racist attacks. Therefore, many people criticized Jimmy Kimmel and accused his remark of being unnecessary and racist.
Fans were outraged when Jimmy Kimmel openly compared Ashley Park’s fangirling on BTS with the virus. There have been many angry comments voicing their dissatisfaction with Jimmy Kimmel’s behavior left in the comments section below the video of his conversation with Ashley Park posted on YouTube.