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Huntsman's Awkward Chinese Food Joke Reporteldy Edited From 'The Colbert Report


"Did that go over well in Beijing?"

By many reports, Jon Huntsman's appearance on Comedy Central's "Colbert Report" on Monday night went well. Then news started circulating of a cut joke that was not only awkward, but that some could take offense to. And now it's worth wondering if the reviews could change.

See, during the show, Colbert played a Chinese jingle a couple times during the show and noted that "I'm legally obligated to do that." In the aired segment, Huntsman laughs it off. But according to ABC, the segment was edited for time and cut out one of Hutnsman's responses to the jingle that was less than favorable:

When Colbert played a sound effect of a stereotypical Chinese riff, Huntsman joked, “When’s the delivery food coming?” After a few seconds of awkward silence, Colbert replied, “Did that go over well in Beijing?” This portion of the interview was cut for time from the broadcast.

“There was a gasp,” audience member Dana Cole told ABC News. “A little tasteless. No one really saw it coming. He got ahead of himself. ”

Politico's Alexander Burns responded by saying that it "turns out Jon Huntsman's flat debate humor actually could have been worse." The Atlantic Wire called it "tasteless" in its headline.

Still, one audience member told ABC it might not have been as bad as it seemed.

“I think he was just really nervous honestly,” said Zach Zirlin. “He was just trying to humanize himself a little bit … I think he brings a very fresh face to the Republican Party. All the past candidates were not easy to relate to and he seems more human than the rest.”

As for Huntsman, he later went on to speak in perfect Mandarin, which might have earned him some points. He also felt confident about his appearance, but he also seemed to hint at the joke in a post-show interview.

“I think we got a passing grade. We didn’t screw it up. I don’t think I offended too many people. Maybe there was a memorable line or two that will actually show up on television over the next couple of days, and if so, we might get that famous [Colbert] bump,” Huntsman told TIME’s Mark Halperin.

You can watch the edited segment below:

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