John Oliver To Dr. Oz: Are You A Doctor Or An Old-West Traveling Salesman?

As many of you recall, TV’s Dr. Oz took a spanking last week before a Senate subcommittee that questioned his use of terms like “miracle” and “magic” in the description of unproven weight-loss products and treatments. And on HBO’s Last Week Tonight, host John Oliver suggested a better line of work for the pill-pushing physician, along with a more accurate title for his much-watched talk show.

After reviewing some of Oz’s most dubious decrees, like calling raspberry ketone, a “miracle flower” for fighting fat, Oliver asked, “Miracle flowers? Are you a doctor or an Old-West traveling salesman?”

He then suggested that Oz could sell his viewers “A monkey’s paw mixed with five petals of a rose in a thimble full of otter semen! Guaranteed to cure your lumbago!”

With regard to the so-called “Oz Effect,” in which the mere mention of a questionable weight-loss product on his shows results in scammers and sketchy marketers coming out of the woodwork to take advantage of desperate consumers, Oliver said, “The only problem with the Dr. Oz effect is that magic pills don’t technically exist, and Dr. Oz knows that.”

In his testimony before the subcommittee, Oz the Great and Doctorful said that while he believes in the stuff he pushes on his audience, he knows that some of it wouldn’t pass scientific muster.

“That’s the whole point!” interjected Oliver. “You’re presenting it as a doctor. If you want to keep spouting this bullsh*t, that’s fine. But don’t call your show Dr. Oz, call it ‘Check This Sh*t Out With Some Guy Named Mehmet.'”

You can watch the whole clip above, though not all the NSFW language is bleeped out, so keep your volume down if you’re at work.

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.