Xplay Host Frosk Out At G4 A Week After Layoffs
A week after big layoffs rocked the network, Kotaku has learned that Xplay host, Indiana “Froskurinn” Black, is no longer with G4. Comcast, G4’s parent company, bought out the remainder of her contract, according to two sources familiar with the business. The news was announced internally by head of the network, Joe Marsh, in a town hall meeting on Tuesday morning.
“Thank you so much to @g4tv and the talented Xplay and Esports departments!” Black wrote on Twitter today. “Loved working with you guys. Gonna especially miss Gex!”
Black was one of the main hosts of Xplay alongside Jirard “The Completionist” Khalil, Corey “The Black Hokage” Smallwood, and Adam Sessler, the host of the original version of the gaming talk show during its cable TV run in the 2000s. Sessler stepped back from the program earlier this year to address family medical issues.
Black came to G4 from the League of Legends esports scene where she was a color commentator. In addition to discussing the latest news and helping review games, Black was also occasionally outspoken, especially on the misogynistic comments and harassment often leveled at the more diverse reboot of the network, including her personally. In a January episode she called out the sexist expectations and double standards of some G4 viewers in a speech that co-host Adam Sessler called one of the “most amazing things I’ve ever been part of on live TV.”
Two sources Kotaku spoke with speculated that the timing of the decision may have been related to a September 15 tweet in which Black posted a meme saying “I survived.” It was likely aimed at those who had celebrated the G4 layoffs hoping that Black would be among them, but was also interpreted by many as tone-deaf in the wake of so many losing their jobs at the network just the day before.
G4 and Black did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Black’s departure seems far from the only likely shakeup coming. As G4 faces financial pressure to increase revenue while cutting costs, three sources familiar with the business tell Kotaku they expect a bigger focus on lower-budget, personality-led Twitch streams instead of more highly produced talk shows and sketch comedy segments. According to one source, Kevin Pereira, the host of Attack of the Show!, is also set to leave G4 sometime in October.
Pereira did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Update: 9/20/22 3:52 p.m. ET: Added Black’s tweet thanking the teams at G4.