'I tried to laugh it off but it was just too hurtful'
Lisa 'roasted' on TV by host of 'Wagon's Den'
Published 27/01/2013 | 05:00
LISA MURPHY has revealed her hurt after a recent appearance on TV show Wagon's Den.
Tuning into Wagon's Den last Thursday night on RTE to watch Katherine Lynch humiliate Lisa Murphy, I felt like the modern-day equivalent of those 17th-century people who used to visit insane asylums to be entertained by the madness of the inmates.
Lynch – or her character, Sheila Chic – was the near-sadistic ringleader.
Her mocking comments about Lisa's "Frisbee lips" were hurtful to the woman she was directing them at, as was bile such as: "She looks like Jay Leno dressed up as Joan bleedin' Rivers."
The questioning of Ms Murphy – sitting on the RTE couch with her Dublin Wives co-star Jo Jordan – bordered at times on the crass and almost the misogynistic. It was unpleasant to watch.
I had an idea of what was coming. After the show was recorded, Lisa texted me: "Wagon's Den totally destroyed me. I am so upset."
RTE's website describes Wagon's Den as an exercise to "skewer the dead meat and baste it in a satisfyingly bitchy marinade of coruscating wit and savvy outrage". It was certainly bitchy, whatever about savvy.
Yesterday morning when I spoke to Lisa, she wasn't seeing the savvy in it. The Dublin Wives star was "extremely upset" after her interview, she told me. "I am still hurt by what went on that night. It was terrible. I was humiliated."
I asked her if she was she talking directly about the comment: "You've had your breasts done? Where did you put them? In your lips?"
"I was shocked," Lisa answered. "It was awful and quite nasty. I tried to laugh it off because that's who I am, but it was very hurtful. She didn't target anyone else.
"At the end of the day," she added, "it is all my own fault for going on the show but I didn't expect it to be so bad. I even said to Katherine, 'Can you pick on somebody else?' I felt totally annihilated.
"I was very upset coming off the couch. At first I was wondering, 'Am I being too sensitive?' Then afterwards I was still in shock and hurt.
Lisa's closest friend, Rachel Glennon, contacted me at Lisa's request to say that Lisa "was shaking after the show. She was publicly destroyed.
"It was a personal attack on her speech, her appearance and her personality. She felt the constant need to defend herself and was clearly very uncomfortable during the interview, but it continued.
"She maintained herself during the interview and is still extremely upset."
Gerald Kean, Lisa's former partner, said somewhat chivalrously: "Lisa never lets herself down and she certainly didn't on Wagon's Den.
"My feeling is that if you go on that show – Katherine is horrendously vulgar to her guests – you know what you are going to get: a total send-up. But I thought Lisa did exceptionally well.
"She tried to rise above it. Lisa is probably an easier target because she is not going to fight back because she is a lady."
"It was hurtful what she said about her lips," Lisa's housemate in Castleknock, Jo Jordan, said.
"She was upset. I felt for her. The filming went for two hours I was slaughtered as well but that wasn't shown on the show. It was a bit unfair.
"The night before we went on," Jo continued, "we watched Vogue Williams on it and Jaysus, she got it bad. She just laughed it off and we thought that's what we'd do. You can't make a show of yourself by storming off."
Katherine Lynch didn't take my call yesterday. She sent me a text instead, saying: "I hope you know Lisa was on the show before. She knew exactly what it's about.
"She told us the subject she didn't want to discuss. We respected that. The researchers told her she was going to be slagged. She said fire away. She got paid. In my opinion she was a good sport."
I texted her back to say that Lisa was hurt and upset by her treatment on Wagon's Den.
"I know the show is comedy but do you not think, 'You had your breasts done? Where did you put them? In your lips?' borders on the misogynist? It went beyond comedy into something painful to watch: humiliation."
She texted back: "Have your story, Barry."
I asked, did she not think I had a point? The RTE star texted back one word: "No."
Then 10 minutes later another text: "It's a Comedy Roast type show. People come on are told. Look at Comedy Roast and see the top celebs 'n' comedians have go at each other in jest. I repeat, in jest. This is going to make Lisa look bad. Not me. So don't do it. She's a nice girl."