Alan Hughes slams comic Oliver Callan as 'bitter old queen' after taking a pop at his tv proposal
TV star Alan Hughes has labelled Oliver Callan a "bitter old queen" in a war of words over his public proposal.
The TV3 presenter popped the question to partner of 22 years, Karl Broderick, on the Ireland AM couch earlier this week and has spent a large majority of the week defending his decision to propose so publicly.
But the words of one critic, Oliver Callan, has sparked a new Irish celebrity feud.
Callan wrote in his newspaper column: "That gay people, amid a supposed spirit of equality, are now choosing to mimic any ghastly wedding custom is embarassing. After years of celebrating difference, it turns out they want to be as bland and crass as everyone else."
But Hughes, who hosts a Christmas panto every year with his other half, responded by saying the comic needs a "reality check".
"This is coming from the guy who came out on a Saturday night chat show? If that's not attention seeking, I don't know what is," he told the Irish Daily Mirror.
"He obviously needs to sell tickets for his tour but if that's the type of bitter old queen we have in Ireland, then I don't know. I pity his boyfriend. Oliver needs a reality check."
What prompted Alan to take the plunge was a “shocking” survey released last month showing that 20pc of all young LGBT couples had attempted suicide at some point.
“I thought that was horrible and I wanted to show other gay people that if we’re able to propose live on TV, maybe then they’ll have the courage to come out to their mam or dad or their friends. They were just horrible statistics to see.”
He said it was remarkable how much Ireland had changed as a country, given that 22 years ago, when they first met, it was still illegal to be gay. “You could be put in jail. The police could have been coming around at the door and it’s mad to think that since that time, we’ve brought in civil partnership and full marriage.
“I just thought it was a brilliant week to do it, with my little TV family all watching and I’m so delighted with the response,” he added.