Jimmy Kimmel could not wait to talk about the man who was physically removed from an overbooked United Airlines flight.
The late-night host used most of his monologue to dig into the disturbing video that dominated social media on Monday, asking who in his audience flew in from out of town. “I’m glad none of you were yanked off your plane,” he said. Kimmel began by questioning the concept of the “overbooked” flight. “I’ve been to a hundred games and stadiums with 50,000 seats, they never sell the same seat two times to one person, but for some reason, airlines cannot figure this out.”
As Kimmel explained, United tried to offer passengers vouchers to give up their seats but one man refused and security ended up dragging him down the plane’s aisle against his will. “That’s how my mother used to get me out of bed to go to school every morning,” he joked after playing the video. “This poor guy, they roughed him up.”
But even worse than the incident itself, Kimmel added, was United CEO Oscar Munoz’s official statement, in which he apologized for having to “re-accommodate” passengers on the flight. “It’s like how we ‘re-accommodated’ El Chapo out of Mexico,” Kimmel said. “That is such sanitized, say-nothing, take-no-responsibility, corporate B.S. speak. I don’t know how the guy who sent that tweet didn’t vomit when he typed it out.”
“When you break this down, a man was forcibly dragged off a flight because they oversold it, which how that happens in the first place, I don’t know,” he continued. “And by the way, they almost certainly could have gotten volunteers by offering more money,” Kimmel said, suggesting they go up to $100,000. “Who cares? It’s not the passenger’s fault that you sold too many tickets on your plane.”
Imagining what would happen if the same thing occurred at an Applebee’s with diners getting kicked out of their table 20 minutes into the meal and then getting dragged out of the restaurant, Kimmel said, “You wouldn’t eat there again.” But somehow, with airlines, it’s different. “The next time we book a flight, it doesn’t matter if it’s United or Delta or American, if one of those flights is a dollar less than the other one, that’s the one we’ll pick. They know this. That’s why we’re stuck with them.”
Despite a federal investigation into the incident, rather than admit that they had done anything wrong, Kimmel said United was actually “doubling down” on the whole thing before playing a parody ad for the airline.
“We’re United Airlines. You do what we say when we say, and there won’t be a problem,” the pitchwoman said. “If we say you fly, you fly. If not, tough shit. Give us a problem, and we’ll drag your ass off the plane. And if you do this, we’ll beat you so badly you’ll be using your own face as a flotation device.” Then she delivered the company’s new slogan: “United Airlines: fuck you.”