ABC's Prank News Show Almost Gets Actor Playing Anti-Gay Counselor 'Killed'

[UPDATED with video.] ABC's prank undercover news show What Would You Do on Friday again attempted to find secret, anti-gay bias, this time featuring a counselor telling a sobbing teen that he needs to "pray away the gay." Host John Quinones managed to drag Michelle Bachmann into the topic and seemed to have no problem when a patron asserted he was going to "kill" the actor playing the counselor.

The program set up a hidden camera in a New Jersey pancake house. Narrator/host Quinones introduced the counselor as someone "who believes the power of prayer can change anything." A bizarre close-up of his mouth appeared onscreen and echoing sound effects are used as he proclaimed, "Together, we can pray the gay away. [Echoes] Away." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]

Dragging the former presidential candidate into ABC's version of Candid Camera, Quinones derided, "The controversy has even made its way into presidential politics. Marcus Bachmann."
 
He added, "A clinic owned by Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and her husband was accused of practicing something called reparative therapy."

At the diner, an eavesdropping woman attacked the counselor, "You've got that amazingly calm demeanor that says serial killer to me."

Quinones cheered the woman's husband, "Their pancakes may be cold, but the man is on fire."

After being informed the falsity of the situation, the angry man told the faux counselor, "You are absolutely fantastic. And you almost died!"

This is the exact same thing that happened when ABC trolled for anti-gay marriage bias in New York. For more on that, go here.

On the What Would You Do website, viewers can submit their own undercover scenarios. How about one featuring a fake reporter making liberal, sneering comments to real journalists?

[Thanks to MRC intern Brent Scher for assistance with the video.]

To read a version of this article with a transcript, go here.

Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock is the senior news analyst for the Media Research Center and a contributing editor for NewsBusters.org