Andrew Tate's huge online following is built around an alpha male persona that has seen the self-proclaimed misogynist repeatedly make derogatory and offensive comments about women.
It's also a persona that doesn't allow him to cry – or, at least, admit to it on TV.
On Tuesday, Tate – who was charged in Romania with rape, human trafficking and forming a criminal gang to exploit women in June – was interviewed by Piers Morgan about his time in prison and his upcoming trial.
Tate, 36, admitted he had become emotional during his imprisonment.
“I was emotional, I missed people, I missed them, and I knew they missed me. So I felt a strong sense of missing,” said the former reality star, who first came to prominence when he was removed from Big Brother after a video surfaced online which appeared to show him attacking a woman with a belt.
Asked if he had cried, Tate responded: “There were tears that ran down my face, but I did not cry,” to which Morgan responded: “I mean, that's crying.”
Piers Morgan asks Andrew Tate if he cried in jail.
“There were tears running down my face. But I did not cry” pic.twitter.com/UY6qE7Ae3s
— DramaAlert (@DramaAlert) November 21, 2023
Meeting in a hotel in Bucharest, Tate also defended his response to a bikini photo posted by Amanda Holden to which he responded on the social media platform X: “You are a wife and a mother and youre far past a teenager. There is no need for this post.”
Tate told Morgan: “You can call me crazy, you can call me misogynistic, but I think once you reach the ripe age of 50, any woman should not be interested in thirst trapping on Instagram.”
He added: “I think she has bigger responsibilities.”
Leaked online chats identify 45 victims of Andrew Tate (New York Daily News)
Andrew Tate said he'd give $1M a month to Elon Musk (Business Insider)
Tate, somewhat bizarrely, also insisted he was a feminist, claiming that “feminine empowerment is in modesty” and saying of his post about Holden: 'It's empowering when you say “no man except my husband can see my body.” That is female empowerment and I was reminding her of that."
There were tears running down my face.
But I did not cry.
— Andrew Tate (@Cobratate) November 21, 2023
What is next for Andrew Tate?
Tate's face was all over social media during the summer of 2022 as he built his online following of mainly young men and teenaged boys, Even when he was de-platformed by a number of social media channels, people still spoke about him and he became the most famous influencer amongst Gen Z, according to research from Piper Sandler.
In December that year, he was arrested along with his brother, Tristan Tate, on human trafficking, rape and organised crime charges.
It is unknown when the case will go to court and it could take years before Tate's trial concludes.
Following months of house arrest, in September a Bucharest tribunal lifted restrictions around his movement and ruled he can now travel anywhere in Romania. He is still banned from leaving – a decision Tate is appealing.
Tate is also appealing to get his seized items back. This includes dozens of luxury sports cars, cash and expensive watches.
After his de-platforming, Tate was allowed to return to X (formerly known as Twitter) in October 2022 by Elon Musk - Tate now has eight million followers. Other platforms have not been so welcoming, and he doesn't appear to have returned to YouTube or Instagram.