Although country singer John Rich was previously announced as a competitor on the upcoming fourth season of Donald Trump’s hit reality show Celebrity Apprentice, NBC has been forced to withdraw Rich’s invitation in order to avoid running afoul of FCC ego restrictions, according to an official statement.
“It has come to our attention that including John Rich in our cast would put us in clear violation of Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulations limiting the amount of ego on a network channel in prime time,” reads the press release posted to the NBC website today. “Although we were not previously aware of this rule’s existence, as this is apparently the first time we’ve ever come close to exceeding the allowable amount of ego in the 9 o’clock hour, we have every intention of respecting the FCC’s authority on this matter. We apologize to Mr. Rich and his fans—including, and especially, his grandmother.”
According to the release, rapper Lil Jon, steroidal home run king Jose Canseco, Sugar Ray frontman Mark McGrath, ousted The View cohost Star Jones, conniving Survivor: Season 1 egomaniac Richard Hatch and the rest of the cast have all been cleared by the FCC and will continue in the competition as planned. Even ‘The Donald’ himself falls well within the acceptable range of self-involvement.
“Really, the only one they had a problem with was John Rich,” said an NBC executive speaking on condition of anonymity. “I believe the exact words were that he ‘displayed a level of self-centeredness potentially injurious to himself and other contestants’ and ‘likely to be disruptive to the social fabric of the nation as a whole.’ Basically, I think they were concerned that kids would be drawn in by his whole shtick and start wearing fur coats during the summertime and claiming to speak on behalf of deceased country legends. It was probably for the best.”
Rich, who is reportedly none too pleased with NBC’s decision, took to his own website this afternoon to invite any attractive, college-aged women in the greater Nashville area to a guided peacock hunt at Mt. Richmore, to be followed by the unveiling of a brand new 40-foot painting of his own face.