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Commentary: What was Wendy Williams thinking?

  • Story Highlights
  • Wendy Williams and Omarosa have catfight on TV show
  • Buzz about pair's verbal brawl hasn't abated
  • Lola Ogunnaike: Williams needs to keep her edge on TV
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By Lola Ogunnaike
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NEW YORK (CNN) -- Radio shock jock Wendy Williams was rendered speechless.

Wendy Williams, Omarosa

Omarosa, left, and Wendy Williams fling insults at each other this week on Williams' new TV talk show.

It's a sight I and many of her fans never thought we'd witness, but there it was: Williams mouth agape as Omarosa Manigault-Stallworth, "The Apprentice" contestant-turned-queen of reality TV bitchiness, made mincemeat of her on her fledgling talk show.

Omarosa was there Monday to promote her new book, "The Bitch Switch: Knowing How to Turn it On and Off." Apparently, her switch was set on 10 that day.

The interview started off rocky. Omarosa wouldn't allow Williams to hold her book and even snatched it from her hands. Meow. The two tried to play nice, but it didn't last for long. Video Watch Omarosa and Williams get into it »

Omarosa, with her unapologetically nasty disposition, has not represented black women well, Williams suggested. "I'd rather be an angry black woman than a buffoon," Omarosa replied.

Soon the two were trading insults like mink-clad divas in an Aaron Spelling nighttime soap. "Did you have a nose job?" Omarosa asked as the crowd jeered. Williams only admitted to Botox and suggested her guest get some Restylane to fix her wrinkles. "They say good black doesn't crack; it's cracking," she said.

The crowd cheered. Omarosa, undeterred, said Williams needed to wear better wigs.

Everyone loves a good catfight. The video clip has been viewed hundreds of thousands of times and the buzz about the pair's verbal brawl has not abated. I've been forwarded links to their showdown more times than I care to count. Williams and Omarosa both said it wasn't a scripted stunt, but their tussle has generated some much-needed publicity for the pair, who met their match in one another.

Omarosa, through sheer determination, has parlayed a stint on "The Apprentice" in 2004 into a small cottage industry. Since then she's appeared on several reality series. The former pageant queen is now paid to be the angry black woman and, unfortunately, she never disappoints.

For years, Williams has been desperate to parlay her hit radio show into television fare. Pilots have come and gone. She, however, has remained the same -- unapologetically bawdy, gossipy and highly entertaining. Which rapper is gay? Ask Wendy. Which starlet has had plastic surgery? Ask Wendy. What to do about your cheating husband? Ask Wendy.

She has been as quick to dish about her own colorful life: her cheating husband, her breast implants, her miscarriages, her cocaine addictions. As a result, her afternoon show is one of the highest rated in the country and she is, for better or worse, one of the pre-eminent voices on radio.

But it appears as if Williams is tempering her hot-pink personality to play well on television. Would she have allowed Omarosa to be that disrespectful on her radio show? I highly doubt it. If she hopes to make this show stick, she can't afford to water down her Kool-Aid. Wendy must be Wendy.

Amid all the trash talking, Omarosa offered her nemesis a nugget of wisdom. "I'd like to see more of the edge," she said.

Wendy, please take her advice about that -- and the wigs.


Lola Ogunnaike is the entertainment correspondent for CNN's "American Morning."

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the writer.

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