Can Tracy Morgan recover?

Desperate to salvage his image, the comedian is in full mea culpa mode after his homophobic rant during a comedy routine last week

Tracy Morgan
(Image credit: John Ricard ./Retna Ltd./Corbis)

The gay audience member who publicized 30 Rock star Tracy Morgan's homophobic rant last week accepted Morgan's public apology on Wednesday, saying the NBC actor should not lose his job. Meanwhile, Morgan announced that he'll work with GLAAD's "Amplify Your Voice" anti-bullying campaign, and has come out in support of gay marriage. Will this damage control help Morgan regain his popularity, or is his reputation beyond repair?

This will all blow over: In his apology, Morgan seems sincere, says John Mitchell at MTV, unlike former Grey's Anatomy actor Isaiah Washington, whose self-serving non-apology apology for "a similar, anti-gay gaffe" in 2007 wrecked the actor's career. By avoiding Washington-like excuses, Morgan's made it clear he "knows he did something wrong." Once his tour of remorse is over, he should be able to return to work, "lie low, and let 30 Rock do his talking for him."

"Will Tracy Morgan recover from anti-gay slur?"

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Well, his apology isn't that sincere: I'm not sold on Morgan's about-face, says Mary Eliabeth Williams at Salon. It's a tale of two Tracys. "Comedy draws from life," so Morgan's apparent homophobia could very well be deeply ingrained. And now he's supporting gay marriage? "Who's the real Tracy Morgan here?" It's admirable that he's atoning by reaching out to the LGBT community, but his road to forgiveness "doesn't stop there."

"Tracy Morgan is ready to make nice"

Plus, 30 Rock doesn't really need Morgan: The gay rights organization GLAAD has gone on record saying Morgan shouldn't lose his job on 30 Rock, says Lynette Rice at Entertainment Weekly. That's a big deal, since "it's doubtful the show would struggle without him." Morgan missed several episodes this season while on leave for kidney replacement surgery, and the show's writers proved "they could write a good arc without Morgan in the mix."

"Should NBC replace Tracy Morgan on 30 Rock?"

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