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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Illustration for article titled Judge tosses out that defamation lawsuit against HBO and John Oliver
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A West Virginia judge has granted HBO and John Oliver’s request to have a defamation suit against them dismissed, according to The Hill. The case in question was brought against Oliver by coal CEO Bob Murray, who the comedian heavily mocked on a 2017 installment of his HBO series, Last Week Tonight. Murray threatened to sue Oliver for his comments—which ranged from accusations of complicity in harming the health of his employees, to describing him as a “geriatric Dr. Evil”—which only led the host to mock him even more, because that’s how John Oliver rolls.


HBO’s attorneys argued that Oliver’s comments were either factual—sourced from various court documents about Murray’s behavior—or clearly satirical (and protected, either way, by the First Amendment), and West Virginia judge Jeffrey Cramer appears to have agreed. “I find the arguments set forth in the Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim and Reply well-founded, appropriate in this matter and will grant the same,” Cramer wrote in his decision. “The Court adopts, with little exception, Defendants’ argument in support of their Motion regarding all issues addressed in the same.” 

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