America's Got Talent

Howard Stern on 'Got Talent' gig: Someone should be fired for hiring me

May 10, 2012 at 8:46 AM ET

Should loyal "America's Got Talent" fans really worry about legendary shock jock Howard Stern joining the primetime competition? Well, that depends on who you ask.

According to TV watchdog group, the Parents Television Council (PTC), Stern's "vulgar and explicit" reputation could ruin the show's family friendly vibe, but what does the King of All Media himself say?

"What a crazy idea, to put me on a family show -- someone on NBC should be fired for that," Stern laughed during a Thursday morning visit to TODAY.

Of course, unlike the PTC, Stern was just joking.

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In reality, the obviously media-savvy man feels he's a perfect fit for the show.

"I'm not going on the show to disrupt the beauty of 'America's Got Talent' -- cause I love the show," Stern said.

That's a fact that his many satellite listeners can attest to. Stern's an avid fan of many reality TV competitions, and he's turned analyzing them into a regular act and an art form on his show.

"I merely wanted to go on and be a very serious judge," he continued. "And what we found as we traveled all over the country that it turns out, I'm the judge that everyone agrees with."

TODAY anchor and Stern pal Matt Lauer couldn't argue that point. After attending a recent audition-round taping, he saw first-hand how audiences reacted to Stern. He also saw how Stern reacted to contestants -- including a 7-year-old rap hopeful who started to cry after the new judge X'ed him out of the running.

"Well, of course, I felt horrible inside," Stern recalled. "I don't know the rules. I walked up on stage and I hugged him and I calmed him down. ... What am I? Frankenstein?"

That's not to say that he won't be tough too.

"I watch 'American Idol' sometimes, and those three judges, they don't have a word of criticism, and I think that's selfish," he insisted. "I think you owe it to the contestants to offer criticism."

As for Stern, he's received plenty of that from the PTC, or as he calls them "a group of about seven people" writing emails from home -- a group he's not particularly concerned about.

"NBC should pay them millions of dollars," he laughed. "The more they keep issuing the statements it makes me seem more interesting and controversial."

Alas, Stern saved his controversial routine for another show -- TODAY.

"I'm honored to be on the TODAY show. I never get to be at the TODAY show. Matt and I are personal friends. We sit at my home, we drink wine, and we evaluate the TODAY show."

Stern's evaluation? "I liked when Al Roker was fat, compared to how he is today!"

Then the radio legend hopped in the host's lap for some impromptu Lauer lovin'.

Hear more from Stern and the rest of the "Got Talent" panel when the talent competition returns to NBC for its seventh season on May 14.

Are you looking forward to seeing what the King of All media will bring to the show? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page.


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