Radio shock jock Howard Stern offered a tepid apology to actress Lena Dunham for calling her fat by conceding that she isn't "obese or anything."
Dunham called in to Howard's radio show Jan. 16 shortly after winning two Golden Globe awards for "Girls," her hit HBO comedy-drama. "I’m not super thin, but I’m thin for, like, Detroit," Lena joked on Stern's radio show.
Howard, 59, then conceded that Dunham, 26, "isn't obese or anything," and proceeded to lavishly praise her work.
"It’s not about apologizing, although I want to say I’m a fan of yours," gushed Stern. "I love you and I think you’re terrific ... Not only am I addicted, but I totally get you. I’m in love with you and your character."
The effusive compliments were a far cry from the remarks Howard made a few days earlier, when he described Dunham as "a little fat girl who kind of looks like Jonah Hill, and she keeps taking her clothes off, and it kind of feels like rape."
Shortly after making the comments, a contrite Stern asked his producer to contact Dunham and invite her on his show, saying, "It makes me feel bad, and I think she's getting the impression that I somehow think she’s just a talentless little fat chick."
Lena, who openly admits she has struggled with weight her entire life, told Stern she appreciated his attempt to extend an olive branch.
"I appreciate your effort to rectify [this], but whether you had done that or not, I would've remained a [Howard Stern] enthusiast," she said graciously.
Dunham has confessed it's not easy being chubby in the image-driven entertainment industry, where being a size zero is the holy grail.
"It's so hard for little fat chicks to get anything going these days," she told David Letterman. "I want my gravestone to say, 'She was a little fat chick and she got it going.' "
This isn't the first time Howard has fat-shamed celebrities with weight problems. In February 2012, he told Maroon 5 front-man Adam Levine that Christina Aguilera was too fat to wear tight clothes.
"Why do you think she's gotten so heavy?" Stern asked Levine. "Is she upset? She used to be so f**king hot. And her clothes are too tight, right?"
An uncomfortable Adam declined to comment, but insisted Christina isn't plus-sized. "Her clothes are tight," Levine noted. "She likes to wear tight clothes. She clearly likes to talk about being comfortable with being a woman."
Stern followed up by commenting that Aguilera is too fat to wear such tight clothes. "When you're a plus-size woman, you can't wear the tight clothes anymore," said Howard, who speculated that the 5-foot-2 Christina is a size 12.
In March 2010, Stern made headlines after commenting that "Precious" star Gabourey Sidibe will never get another acting job because she's just too fat.
"There's the most enormous, fat black chick I've ever seen," Stern said on his Sirius satellite radio show. "She's the size of a planet."