Wil Wheaton, known by Trekkies worldwide as Wesley Crusher in the hit series Star Trek: The Next Generation, had some terse words for Curb Your Enthusiasm star Larry David after an appearance by David on NBC’s Today. Referencing a clip on the network show where David attacks and chokes Sesame Street‘s iconic muppet Elmo, Wheaton took to social media to launch a tirade against the actor and comedian for what he equated to mocking childhood abuse.
Larry David Vs. Elmo
The Today moment that has Wil Wheaton so upset occurred when David, who was waiting for his turn at an interview, crossed the stage and began to choke the muppet. Today hosts appeared to be shocked by the incident but were laughing about David’s unscripted actions. As the set begins to settle down, David is heard saying “Somebody had to do it.”
Wheaton Didn’t Like What He Saw
Elmo was on Today to discuss the importance of mental health, an issue that struck a particular chord with Wil Wheaton. The Stand by Me actor revealed in his Facebook post that he was triggered by David’s actions, referencing his own childhood abuse at the hands of his father. In Wheaton’s eyes, David’s attack on what he called “an avatar for children” was unforgivable, and that children across the world saw an old man attack “someone they love for no reason.
Fans Hurry To Support Wheaton
While most of the internet seemed to be amused by David’s antics on the show, there were some online who chimed in to defend Wil Wheaton’s position. Some felt that David was mocking mental health awareness, while others called the Seinfeld co-creator out for making a publicity stunt to promote the final season of his HBO series Curb Your Enthusiasm.
Others Hurry To Attack Wheaton
But some notable names came out in defense of David’s stunt, perhaps enraging Wil Wheaton even more than the incident itself. Journalist Glenn Greenwald opined that he first believed Wheaton’s post to be satire, while award-winning author Joyce Carol Oates made the point that how this “highly sensitive individual” (Wheaton) reacted to this situation on television should pale in comparison to how he might react in a more serious matter, particularly the war in Gaza.
David apologized on Today to the muppet, who did offer forgiveness to the comedian. But that apology wasn’t sincere enough for Wil Wheaton, whose online diatribe referred to David using multiple familiar vulgarities. Perhaps Wheaton was onto something about the apology not being sincere, based on David’s interview on Late Night with Seth Meyers later that same day.
During his interview with Meyers, the late-night host brought up the incident prompting David to recall it from his point of view. David stated that he was waiting to be interviewed and was forced to hear Elmo talk about mental health and he just couldn’t take it anymore. “I throttled him,” he proudly announced.
David doubled down on his controversial actions, telling Meyers that he’d do it again. David’s recollection of events was met with laughter from the late-night crowd, perhaps reflecting that there are more people in his court on this issue than in Wil Wheaton’s.