A stand-in broadcaster on a popular New Zealand morning TV show was accidentally outed this morning during a live broadcast.
Watching the footage of the show (also broadcast on radio), it’s impossible not to feel sympathy for him that his decision when to publicly come out was taken out of his hands.
The incident happened on broadcaster Three’s The AM Show. Ryan Bridge was filling in for regular host Duncan Garner. Bridge was talking on-air with sports reporter Mark Richardson and news anchor Amanda Gillies.
The topic was collectors items, and the hosts invited viewers to let them know if they collected anything unusual.
Richardson and Gillies asked Bridge if he collected anything. When he didn’t come up with anything, Richardson quipped, “ex-boyfriends?”
Bridge is visibly taken back by the ‘joke’. You can watch the whole exchange via Stuff.
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After struggling to come up with a response, an uncomfortable-looking Bridge says, “Yes, it’s true, I’m gay. There we go, it’s out there.”
Shortly later, Bridge again addressed what had happened.
“If you caught what was said before on the show … it’s not something I’ve tried to hide. It’s something all my friends and family have known about for a very long time. The reason I haven’t chosen to share it with you at home, with listeners on my radio show, it’s just that, I don’t know, it’s not that interesting really, is it?
“And it’s my private business and my life and not something I have necessarily tried to hide, but it’s not something I’ve really bothered or cared to share with the world.”
He revealed he’d already received messages of support from viewers. He went on to say his co-host didn’t intend any malice.
“Mark didn’t do this on purpose. It wasn’t like he was being mean or he was trying to get me to say something I didn’t want to say. That was an innocent, honest mistake.”
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Co-host Richardson then apologized.
“In three years of doing this job, this is as bad as I’ve ever felt. I say a lot of stuff on this show, and I mean it, and some of it walks the line. I just want to say I’m sorry.
“It’s because obviously, I love you so much as a person. Just me being a smartass and trying to poke fun at you for a comedic moment on the show has led to this, and I’m dreadfully sorry.”
Bridge concludes by saying his co-host has nothing to apologize over: “These things happen. It’s live television.”
I just don’t believe the host intended his question as a “comedic moment”. He was not being honest and it was not a mistake.
“He was not being honest and it was not a mistake.”
And how do you know it??
While I understand wanting privacy, it must be sad that when a snippet of your [mundane] personal life does become public it becomes something to explain. If this guy was fine being who he is, he would not worry about having to “out” himself; He would just go along with the banter. The host that made the joke obviously knows the guy enough to know he’s gay and figured it was common knowledge. Maybe Bridge gave off an air of confidence in his sexuality he doesn’t really have. I see growth for Bridge here.
How terribly awkward for both. But it happens on live shows with folks you are friends with. I trust only good things will come from this!
I don’t believe it was a “mistake,” either. Richardson knew what he was saying or he wouldn’t have kept that stupid grin on his face for so long. I feel sorry for Bridge, but he handled it with grace and dignity. I’d love to know what they said to one another off-camera after the show…
The problem with straight people always seeing gay people as someone they can take lightly or make fun of.
Come out fool!!! Then you don’t have to worry about being outed. Most gay people are OBVIOUS. 90% of the time it’s not a shock, so just do it.
Mark Richardson is a tactless idiot. Whether he knew or didn’t know if Bridges is “out,” his statement is not funny or humorous from ANY viewpoint. It’s not a “joke” that anyone would come up with, whether it be a close friend or casual acquaintance.
That “joke” is exactly why people don’t come out in the first place.
These are adults. Actual adults, not college students, but adults with real jobs. So, of course, when seeing a colleague/friend at a loss for words on live TV; you must simply throw out a homophobic reference to jab at your buddy.
And here’s the eternal dilemma in our communities: someone is outed. Sympathy from some, anger from others — “How dare he have kept silent for so long!!!” Ridiculous. We’re all in different rivers, in different boats. This is not a joke. Some people in our communities face terrible possible consequences if outed. Hope Ryan does well.
This just makes me feel sad. In 2019 in a relatively safe country such as NZ, there’s still such shame surrounding being gay. It’s individual, I know, but too bad he’s not comfortable enough to be fully out in life, not just to family and friends. It sounds silly to hear the typical “my romantic life is private” speech when explaining being halfway in and out of the closet. Straight people don’t twist themselves into knots when it comes to who they date. Even if they claim privacy in their dating lives, you never hear straight people equivocating as to whether their romantic partners are opposite-sex. No one ever has to apologize to a straight man for mentioning they had an ex-girlfriend. It’s absurd to apologize for mentioning an ex-boyfriend to another man because there’s nothing wrong with being gay. It isn’t as if they’re being accused of a crime. Bridges could have simply ignored the comment, so I suppose it’s a sign of personal growth that he used it as an opportunity to come out. Too bad it sounded more like he was admitting to terminal cancer.
In New Zealand, Mark Richardson (the man making the inappropriate outing of his co-host) is a former Black Caps Cricket player for NZ. He should know better than to make these crass comments, but he keeps doing it.
They need to take him off the AM show.
I thought I was the only person who thought being gay wasn’t that interesting.
If all that wasn’t bad enough, he came out on television while a news crawl at the bottom of the screen said that 39 dead bodies were found in a truck container.
Ryan is hot – this clip does not do him justice. I used to watch him in the mornings and think “but I doubt that he’s gay”. Nice!
By the way, at 0:22 he says “Sh*t the bed”! I don’t think you could get away with saying that on TV news in America!
Can’t we read about gay escorts or something?
Accident or not, the time that one chooses to come out is deeply personal and requires psychological readiness.
No one, whether public figure or ordinary individual should be forced into a position of coming when they are not ready.
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