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By Kat Giantis
Turns out Chris Brown's unconvincing attempt at contrition during his sit-down with Larry King this week was just one of the missteps he made on his "sorry about that thing I did to Rihanna" image rehabilitation tour (a less serious one: wearing a baby blue sweater with complementary bow tie on national TV).
In a new interview with People magazine, the singer, 20, is asked about the domestic violence-themed show Oprah Winfrey did in response to his February assault on his former flame (she dedicated it to "all the Rihannas of the world"), and he chooses an egregiously insensitive turn of phrase to describe his feelings.
"I commend Oprah on being like, 'This is a problem,' but it was a slap in my face," says Brown, who unfortunately knows far too much about slaps (and other blows) to the face. "I did a lot of stuff for her, like going to Africa and performing for her school. She could've been more helpful, like, 'Okay, I'm going to help both of these people out.'"
If you find it presumptuous and off-putting that he feels entitled to sympathy and assistance from the most powerful woman in media after he brutally beat his girlfriend, you're not alone.
"Oprah is very appreciative that Chris Brown performed at her school, but she takes domestic abuse very seriously," the Big O's rep said in a statement (via TMZ). "She hopes he gets the counseling he needs."
During the Rihanna-inspired show, Oprah warned viewers about the vicious cycle of domestic violence.
"If you go back with a man who hits you, it's because you don't think you're worthy of being with a man who won't," she said. "I've said before love doesn't hurt, and if a man hits you once, he will hit you again."
At least one insider familiar with Brown's endorsement deals believes his decision to criticize Winfrey for her lack of support could tank his comeback before it even begins.
"He's done," the source tells MSNBC.com. "Whatever goodwill he had, he's totally ruined it by saying that. What was he thinking? And who the hell goes up against Oprah? It just shows he doesn't think. No one is going to want him as the face of their brand."
As part of his jail-avoiding guilty plea for felony assault, Brown is banned from communicating with Rihanna for the next five years, a condition he tells People "might have been a little harsh. She knows me, and I know her more than anybody. It's hard."
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