They say anything can happen on live TV and that’s exactly what happened on Monday evening when The Project welcomed US comedian Bert Kreischer to the panel.
Described by the show’s social media accounts as “the loosest interview”, Kreischer appeared on the program without a shirt and left audiences divided when he began talking about his daughters’ periods.
It all began when host Waleed Aly suggested that the 46-year-old had “seen some stuff” in his career.
“Oh bro, I’ve seen my daughters on their periods right now. Are you kidding me?” he said. “I only say that because we were in Bali and so if you’re a woman in Bali on your period, you can’t do anything. You can’t go to the monkey jungle because they attack you.”
While Peter Helliar burst into laughter, Aly initially looked unimpressed and Steve Price looked away from his guest. Lisa Wilkinson smiled as Kreischer went on to explain that his oldest daughter “melted down” when she got her period.
He said: “Thank god I wasn’t there. I would’ve ruined that. I would’ve been like, ‘Girl, you go down to the river and do laundry for a week, you’re dirty’.”
Kreischer added that when his youngest daughter got her period, she called him for help. He recalled telling his daughter that she “called the wrong number” before she asked him to go to the store to get supplies because she was throwing herself a period party.
His daughter claimed that all the girls were doing it and requested that her father buy her a red velvet cake. She also told him that girls put the name of their period on the cake and invited eight girls and two boys to the party. When he asked her why she was inviting boys to the party, she explained that the girls don’t tell the boys why they’re there — something Kreischer thought was hilarious.
When he recounted the story to the panel, Wilkinson and Aly looked in complete shock.
“It was the funnest thing I’ve ever done and I’ve partied a lot,” Kreischer said. “It was the best party.”
He added that he wore red to the event, made pasta with marinara sauce and that his daughter named her period Jason after the horror villain because she got it on Friday the 13th.
“Everyone on this desk is nervously laughing. We’re not quite sure whether we should find this funny,” Price said. “I’ve had a lot of fun with my daughters but I don’t know if I’d be throwing them a period party.”
Audiences weren’t sure what to make of the segment and took to social media with their thoughts.
“I am far from a prude but watching tonight’s episode of The Project over eating dinner with your half naked comedian guest judge talking about his daughter periods and referring to period parties in which he gets involved with I find in serious bad taste,” one person on Facebook wrote. “Not to mention the only female presenter Lisa as a mother laughing and entertained by this so called ‘comedian’. Shame on you channel 10.”
Another said: “What an embarrassing and appalling segment, enough to make me cringe, and his poor daughters.”
A third added: “Very tacky and not what The Project stands for.”
Others praised The Project for the segment and thought it was great that the topic was being discussed.
One comment read: “So sad some women think a dad supporting his daughter’s positive attitude towards her period, in a totally hysterical way, is disgusting.”
Another person said: “It was welcoming to see someone practicing the freedom to speak about what they want. Good on him.”