The Seriously Shady Side Of T.J. Miller

T.J. Miller has a seriously shady side riddled with sexist, racist, vulgar remarks and alleged substance abuse. The former Silicon Valley star's personal life is no laughing matter, and after allegedly calling in a fake bomb scare in April 2018, his career could be over.

After years of small parts in romantic comedies, voiceover work, and the unfortunate Yogi Bear, T.J. Miller caught a significant break in his career when he was cast in the hit HBO sitcom Silicon Valley as the foul-mouthed, tech guru wanna-be Erlich Bachman. But after four seasons, Miller would shockingly announce his exit from the show in 2017, and then proceed to hurl insults at the series that's responsible for taking his career to the next level. It wasn't the best look, and yet not completely out of character for Miller, who's no stranger to controversy.

Let's take a look at his worst moments and consider how and why this comedian seems hell-bent on self-destructing. 

He criticized Silicon Valley after he quit the show

By the time the fourth season finale of Silicon Valley aired in June 24, 2017, T.J. Miller had made it abundantly clear that the episode would be the last appearance for his character, Erlich Bachman, but the biggest bomb drop would come the following morning when The Hollywood Reporter published an interview with an abrasively blunt star.

"The only thing that you can talk down about the show and about Alec Berg, the showrunner for the first couple years, is that it's cyclical." Miller opined. "If they fail, then they succeed, and then if they succeed, they fail. It's over and over. That's an old type of sitcom. That's Seinfeld, where Alec Berg used to work. It's recycling, it's network. This is HBO."

But Miller wasn't done taking shots at Berg. After saying he wouldn't talk to him because "I don't like Alec," Miller made sure that bridge was completely burnt. "I don't know how smart [Alec] is. He went to Harvard, and we all know those kids are f***ing idiots. That Crimson trash. Those comedy writers in Hollywood are f***ing Harvard graduates and that's why they're smug as a bug." Okay...

He threw shade at Thomas Middleditch

As if wasn't bad enough that he openly insulted Silicon Valley showrunner Alec Berg, Miller also threw his longtime friend and improv partner Thomas Middleditch under the bus with some choice comments during the now-infamous interview with The Hollywood Reporter. "I'm not an actor; I'm a comedian. And I don't know how the f*** I hoodwinked Hollywood into giving me a career in this," Miller said. "But I'm not sitting here saying, 'I need more lines. I'm not funny enough.' I'm not Thomas Middleditch."

Once again, Miller would take things even further by suggesting he got out of the way as a favor to a spotlight-hungry Middleditch. "I want to step aside. Thomas Middleditch has always wanted to be a star. He's always wanted to be the star of the show. So I thought, really, it's an ensemble show, and if I step aside, the ensemble will each have a little more room."

What makes his comments about Middleditch wanting to be a star especially shady is that during the course of the interview, Miller openly brags about his upcoming projects and how HBO didn't think he had enough star-power to walk away from Silicon Valley. But this wasn't the first time T.J. Miller called out others for acting exactly like T.J. Miller.

He's hypocritical when it comes to other comics

Miller made headlines in 2012 after writing a scathing review of a Dane Cook comedy set at The Laugh Factory. As a stand-up himself, Miller should've known that Cook was testing out new material, which genuinely doesn't land on the first few tries. Instead, Miller took Cook to task for being misogynistic and arrogant.

"He [is] certainly not a comedian," Miller wrote, according to The AV Club. "You've been doing standup for so many years and you still believe it's okay to bomb and talk about your issues? You. Didn't. Earn This."

Here's the thing, Miller's career includes the exact same type of material for which he criticized Cook: sexism, arrogance, personal issues. In fact, Miller was even told to "chill with the rape jokes" while appearing on The Jeselnik Offensive a year after his takedown of Cook. Gross, right? 

Things would only get worse as Miller's popularity grew.

He hurled racist and sexist insults at a tech conference

Shortly after Silicon Valley became a hit series, Miller was invited to host the 2015 Crunchies, a tech-world version of the Oscars hosted by Tech Crunch. Once again, Miller would make headlines, but this time around, it was for all the wrong reasons. "Within the span of a few minutes, Miller called a woman a b**** three times and casually threw out a racist remark," The Verge reported. Not good! That woman, by the way, just so happened to be Uber CEO Travis Kalanick's then-girlfriend, Gabi Holzwarth.

The awards show controversy earned so much press that Tech Crunch's parent company, AOL, issued a statement apologizing for Miller's remarks and making it clear he would not be invited back. However, AOL should have been aware of Miller's penchant for sexist humor by watching his appearances on The Jeselnik Offensive or looking into how he behaved at a sketch comedy festival just a few weeks earlier.

He's not the best at Q&As either

While attending an event at the 2015 San Francisco Comedy Festival, Miller exhibited the same kind of behavior that landed him in hot water at the Crunchies. After being asked about the effects of the real Silicon Valley on San Francisco, "Miller responded with a long, puerile dialogue that involved some talk of 'f***ing his way through fans in the Tenderloin, a little vague racism about getting treated suspiciously in Japantown and a joke about LSD and the Bay Area that is about 40 years out of date," reported Pando.

Miller also made a joke at the expense of a female audience member. "You don't belong in Silicon Valley, we tried to make that clear with the lack of important parts for you on the show," Miller said to a woman who said she didn't watch Silicon Valley. What made this exchange even more interesting is that Miller's joke made him seem eager to acknowledge the lack of female roles on the hit HBO show, but in an interview during the same year, he blamed the actual Silicon Valley for the show's representation issue.

He accused the tech industry of being the real sexists

In an interview with Salon, Miller became frustrated by frequent criticism about Silicon Valley's lack of female characters and placed the blame at the feet of the tech industry, in general. 

"It's ridiculous," he said. "We're trying to reflect Silicon Valley to the rest of the world accurately, and [in] making fun of it, obviously we had to take some liberties through comedy. But I thought it was so interesting that people attacked the show for not having enough women, instead of attacking Silicon Valley for not having enough women."

Miller essentially implied that the real sexism is being asked to include more women in the show. "I was surprised no one said, well, it's a really accurate representation. They just said: 'Why don't you just stick more women in there?' That's really the grossest thing. To to be like, 'put some f***ing women in there! Who cares, just get some women. We need a couple more women objects in the thing. Go grab some women props, put them in the show.' That's the weird thing for me."

If you're starting to notice a trend, it's that Miller loves to dish out criticism, but he's not so good at taking it.

He can dish it out, but he can't take it

Following the Crunchies controversy, Miller would not only complain about the backlash in at least three separate interviews with Salon, Esquire, and Vulture, but he'd actually go so far as to say calling a woman a "b****" (three times) was the right thing for him to do at an awards show.

"Behind the scenes, people kept saying, 'Do you know who you're making fun of? That's Travis Kalanick's girlfriend.' I'm like, 'Who's Travis Kalanick?' They're like, 'What?! That's the CEO of Uber!' Like, don't you realize that's why I should be laying into his girlfriend." Miller told Vulture

He later circled back to the Crunchies again during an unrelated question about the first season finale of Silicon Valley. "They came at me at the Crunchies for using 'the B-word,' and that was so insane to us, that 'the B-word' even existed. We just call it "b****." My wife called me a b**** yesterday because I was being a little b**** about something. It's just vernacular, and we laugh about that a lot. She calls me 'b****' more around the house because of [the situation]. Which I'm fine with, because I'm not an easily offended Silicon Valley wannabe CEO or something." 

One could certainly say this totally not offended comedian doth protest too much.

He's become a name-dropper

For a guy who criticized Dane Cook for being arrogant after finding success with his career, T.J. Miller has developed a habit for name-dropping, especially after announcing his exit from Silicon Valley.

"I've been working in the trenches," he told Inverse. "This is the way I get to have a movie with Dreamworks, which I'm writing, and to have Spielberg put me in Office Christmas Party and then Ready Player One. I told Spielberg my plan, actually, why I was on so many platforms and taking so many roles, and he said, 'Oh I know, I'm watching. I've seen everything you've done.'"

There's nothing wrong with taking pride in the work you put into your career, but we start to get concerned when Miller claims The Emoji Movie is just what's needed "in this administration, in this climate," an obvious reference to President Donald Trump. That's a grand assertion. Miller makes a similar claim in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, saying he "needs to talk to the American people." By starring in a movie about the poop emoji? We're not quite sure how that's going to help, and Miller doesn't have the best history when it comes to political discussions.

He allegedly slapped an Uber driver

Despite giving several interviews trashing Uber after the Crunchies, Miller called an Uber to pick him up after the GQ Men of the Year party in December 2016, but things didn't exactly go well with his driver.

"During the ride they got into an argument about President-elect Donald Trump. The driver claims T.J. slapped him in the head when they got to his house," TMZ reported. "We're told the driver got pissed and decided to make a citizen's arrest. He called cops who showed up and took T.J. into custody."

The situation went from bad to worse for Miller when the driver accused the comedian of being high on nitrous oxide. In the end, Miller made a deal with the L.A. City Attorney's office and avoided charges. He later battled the driver in court and claimed the entire incident was an attempt at extortion, which seems pretty messy for a simple political argument. Then again, maybe the self-proclaimed voice America needs learned a valuable lesson about what not to do when talking politics. 

He claimed women aren't as funny as men

In yet another jaw-dropping interview, this time with Vulture, Miller argued that women aren't as funny as men. "They're taught to suppress their sense of humor during their formative years," he told the magazine in July 2017.

After the interview was published and the internet went crazy, he clarified his comment in a series of tweets, alleging his words were simply being used for click-bait purposes and that "everyone and their parents missed the point."

"People need a villain," he told Vulture, "and I'm occupying that space."

"After the election, I realized that there was a gap," he said. "Nobody right now is publicly the Lindsay Lohan–train wreck–but–not–quite person." He added, "It's more important to be polarizing than neutralizing. That's my position."

In that case, mission accomplished.

He's accused of sexually assaulting and punching a woman

On Dec. 19, 2017, the Daily Beast published a shocking exposé alleging T.J. Miller sexually assaulted a woman while attending George Washington University. According to the report, rumors about Miller's actions in college have shadowed his career for years, but this was the first time the graphic accusations had been published.

According to the Daily Beast, Miller allegedly punched and choked a woman and performed non-consensual sexual acts on her with various items while attending George Washington in the early 2000s. The woman's former roommates recalled hearing "violent sounds" from the victim's bedroom. The woman eventually went to the campus police, and Miller was subjected to a university court process where the victim's roommates testified against him. Due to federal privacy laws, a George Washington spokesperson would not disclose the outcome of Miller's hearing or confirm rumors that Miller was allowed to "graduate early" to get him off campus. However, "knowledgeable sources" told the Daily Beast that Miller was expelled after he graduated in an attempt to satisfy both parties.

Several woman working in the comedy industry also came forward, saying they refused to work with Miller after hearing rumors about his alleged actions in college. Miller issued a statement denying the allegations.

He accused his alleged victim of exploiting the #MeToo movement

In a joint statement with his wife, mixed media artist Kate Gorney, T.J. Miller not only denied the allegations reported by the Daily Beast, but accused his alleged victim of exploiting the #metoo movement and the growing number of sexual assault allegations among Hollywood players, journalists, and politicians. Miller also accused his accuser of being jealous of his marriage.

"[She] began again to circulate rumors online once [my and Kate's] relationship became public," Miller and his wife said in the statement. "Sadly she is now using the current climate to bandwagon and launch these false accusations again. It is unfortunate that she is choosing this route as it undermines the important movement to make women feel safe coming forward about legitimate claims against real known predators."

The Millers continued to assert that they are the victims in this situation, and that the woman was acting vindictively after allegedly being removed from Miller's comedy group. "She was asked to leave our university comedy group because of worrisome and disturbing behavior, which angered her immensely, she then became fixated on our relationship, and began telling people around campus 'I'm going to destroy them' and 'I'm going to ruin him,'" the couple alleged.

However, the Daily Beast reported that the woman never approached the media, and it supposedly took months for the Daily Beast to find her after learning of the rumors. After which, she was reportedly reluctant to share her story with the public.

He sent a transphobic email to a film critic

After the Daily Beast published its allegations against Miller in December 2017, film critic Danielle Solzman revealed that the troubled comedian sent her a transphobic email after she wrote a negative review for The Emoji Movie. Solzman, a transgender woman, previously shared the offensive email on Twitter in September 2017, but she had redacted Miller's name out of fear of legal threats.

In the email, Miller allegedly refers to Solzman as "Daniel" instead of "Danielle" and purposefully uses the wrong gender pronoun. The actor also allegedly accuses Solzman of pretending to be transgender to be "special."

"You're not transgender, you're not a t***** — you're a f**king a**hole, Daniel," Miller allegedly writes. "A f**king a**hole. Don't respond to this, don't ever contact me again, and don't think that just because you've adopted something, that thing allows you to then be rude and incorrect about your friends."

An adult film star accused him of sexual harassment

Following the sexual assault allegations connected to T.J. Miller's time at George Washington University, Vulture reported that adult film star Dana DeArmond accused the actor of inappropriate behavior while filming a Comedy Central series in 2012.

"I was harassed by both T.J. Miller and the director Jordan Vogt-Roberts shooting for Comedy Central's Mash Up." DeArmond tweeted. "I've been saying T.J. was an a**hole for years. So there you go."

While DeArmond withheld details about Miller's behavior, she did accuse Kong: Skull Island director Vogt-Roberts of kissing her without her consent. "I said 'no thank you' he replied 'don't make this weird' and kissed me anyway," DeArmond tweeted. According to Vulture, Vogt-Roberts directed eight episodes of the Comedy Central series in 2012 and the 2011 TV movie.

He allegedly sent a death threat to a film critic

After film critic Danielle Sulzman confirmed that Miller allegedly harassed her via email over her negative review of The Emoji Movie, Uproxx writer Mike Ryan revealed that a tweet he shared in August 2017 was also about T.J. Miller allegedly attacking him after a critical review. "I wonder what star of a current movie will vaguely threaten my life on DM today?" Ryan wrote in the original tweet

He later confirmed who the "star" was. "This tweet was about TJ Miller, by the way. He sent me 356 fairly incoherent words over 13 DMs because I didn't like The Emoji Movie."

Ryan also tweeted a screencap that showed one of the alleged direct messages from Miller. The message talks about finding a way "to have [Sulzman] killed." Granted, Miller could have been joking, but the senior entertainment writer for Business Insider, Jason Guerrasio, responded to Ryan that he had an ugly T.J. Miller story of his own...

He has an alleged history of acting shady with women

As news about T.J. Miller's shady college past continues to make headlines, more women have come forward to share their questionable interactions with the former Silicon Valley star. 

According to comedian Lauren Ashley Bishop, Miller allegedly threatened to destroy her career if she went through with a restraining order against her ex-boyfriend, who was a close friend of Miller's. Bishop also said that she knows the alleged victim from the Daily Beast report, and that her accusations against Miller should be believed.

On top of that, Hello Giggles reported that another woman accused Miller of attempting to drug her drink after she rebuffed his advances at an open mic, and former HuffPost contributor Lena Anderson claimed Miller has a history of showing "disdain for women" during his act at comedy clubs.

He called in a false bomb threat out of drunken spite

On April 9, 2018, T.J. Miller was arrested for allegedly calling in a false bomb scare while riding an Amtrak train in March 2018.

The Connecticut U.S. Attorney's office announced that Miller was busted for "intentionally conveying to law enforcement false information about an explosive device on a train," according to The Hollywood Reporter.

While traveling by train from Washington, D.C. to Penn Station in New York City, Miller allegedly called 911 to report that a woman "[had] a bomb in her bag," but Miller said it was on train No. 2256. He was riding No. 2258. As a result, train No. 2256 was stopped in Westport, Conn., causing massive delays as passengers were evacuated while authorities searched for explosives. None turned up.

An officer who called Miller after the search claimed the comedian was slurring his speech. TMZ reported that the officer asked Miller if he suffered from mental illness or if he'd consumed alcohol that day. Miller denied both.

As it turned out, Miller was later removed from the train because he was allegedly very drunk when it arrived in New York. A train attendant claimed Miller had several Scotch and sodas as well as wine during the train ride and that he was "involved in hostile exchanges with a woman who was sitting in a different row from him in the first class car." The train attendant told police that the woman never behaved in a suspicious manner. As a result, investigators believe Miller reported the bomb threat out of spite.

Miller was released on $100,000 bond, but if convicted, he could face up to five years behind bars.