Ellen DeGeneres has returned to her talk show for the first time since her 'cancellation'.
The Ellen DeGeneres Show's 18th season premiered in the United States on Monday (Tuesday AEST), with the host's opening monologue shared to social media several hours beforehand.
"Today we're starting a new chapter," it was titled.
Watch: Ellen's awkward encounter with Dakota Johnson. Post continues below video.
In case you missed it, the 62-year-old has been at the eye of a months-long media storm that has upended the public perception of the popular presenter. Essentially, past and present employees have claimed that DeGeneres isn't as nice as she says she is. Plus, several executive producers on the show have been accused of bullying other members of staff.
In July, BuzzFeed News published an investigative piece that outlined the "toxic work culture", including a black woman who says she experienced racist comments. There are also allegations of sexual misconduct on set.
The employees told the publication that they "faced racism, fear, and intimidation". Importantly, most of the accusations were levelled at the executive producers and managers working on the show, and not Ellen herself.
In the almost-five minute long monologue ahead of her latest season, 62-year-old DeGeneres addressed the allegations.
"If you're watching because you love me, thank you," she began. "If you're watching because you don't love me, welcome.
"How was everybody's summer? Good? Yeah? Mine was great," she said sarcastically, having spent the summer in lockdown and dealing with the fallout of multiple rumours from past employees.
Today we’re starting a new chapter. pic.twitter.com/PvpZXnXLv5— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) September 21, 2020