A judge has branded The Jeremy Kyle Show "a form of human bear-baiting" at a court case in Manchester.
The judge described The Jeremy Kyle Show as "depressing"
District Judge Alan Berg said the ITV1 daytime programme was "trash" and existed to "titillate bored members of the public with nothing better to do".
The judge made the comments while sentencing one of the show's guests, who head-butted his love rival during filming earlier this year, for assault.
He added that the show's makers were partly to blame for the attack.
He added that producers had persisted in contacting David Stainforth from Chesterfield to persuade him to make an appearance on the show.
During a recording on 16 May, Stainforth lashed out at bus driver Larry Mahoney, who had begun an affair with his wife Jennifer after moving into their home as a lodger.
Stainforth told the court he had initially been reluctant to appear on the show, but changed his mind after being told his wife was considering a reconciliation.
The 45-year-old was ordered to pay a £300 fine and costs at the hearing in Manchester Magistrates' Court.
In his sentencing, Judge Berg was reported in the Manchester Evening News as saying: "I have had the misfortune, very recently, of watching The Jeremy Kyle Show.
"It seems to me that the purpose of this show is to effect a morbid and depressing display of dysfunctional people whose lives are in turmoil."
He added that it was "human bear-baiting which goes under the guise of entertainment".
"It should not surprise anyone that these people, some of whom have limited intellects, become aggressive with each other.
"This type of incident is exactly what the producers want. These self-righteous individuals should be in the dock with you. They pretend there is some kind of virtue in putting out a show like this," said Judge Berg.
A spokeswoman for ITV said: "We do not recognise the district judge's description of our programme, or his opinion of the viewing public and the people who choose to take part in our programme in an effort to resolve their problems."