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Agoraphobia Or Just Plain Rudeness, Billy Bob?

Back in January, Billy Bob Thornton told MTV he was “kind of an agoraphobic.”

I’m just wondering if that has anything to do with how…off he seemed during his interview with CBC radio’s Jian Ghomeshi.

The interview was supposed to be about Thornton’s band, the Boxmasters, but it was pretty much all around awkwardness from the start. Some of Thornton’s behavior seemed like he was…nervous? At this point, can someone as well known as Billy Bob Thornton still get nervous about things like radio interviews? I suppose so. I mean, he’s human. And if he really has agoraphobia, some of the behavior fits. The way he spoke about wanting to play baseball when he was a kid – the way he looked and the way his voice kind of shook when he responded to the question about almost becoming a professional baseball player – it seemed like he was nervous, and it was kind of sad.

After that, though, his answers really started drifting away from the actual questions. Some of them were very well-thought, articulate responses – but they had nothing to do with Ghomeshi’s questions. That’s before the answers just became kind of mean.

I felt a little sorry for Ghomeshi, but he handled it rather well. Who didn’t handle it very well, though, were Toronto concert goers apparently. As the Boxmasters opened for Willie Nelson last Thursday, the Canadian crowd booed the band in response to Thornton drawing similarities between Canadians and gravy-less mashed potatoes. is calling it “Joaquin Phoenix all over again,” but I don’t yet look for people to sling mental illness diagnoses at Thornton.

Agoraphobia Or Just Plain Rudeness, Billy Bob?

Alicia Sparks

Alicia Sparks is a freelance writer and editor and the creator of, where she blogs to help new freelance writers get their quills in the pot, so to speak. Among animal rights, music, and physical wellness, her passions include mental health and advocacy. Here at Psych Central she works as Syndication Editor as well as authors Your Body, Your Mind and World of Psychology's weekly "Psychology Around the Net."

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APA Reference
Sparks, A. (2019). Agoraphobia Or Just Plain Rudeness, Billy Bob?. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 21, 2019, from


Last updated: 22 Mar 2019
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