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Ask A TV Critic: Eric Deggans

Deggans: I'm trying to remember what he said -- I don't know if it makes me a geek but I actually have that on tape, I have that whole story on videotape at home. I can't remember exactly what he said, but I think he said something like he doesn't hate white people, but he had a good comeback and I cannot remember what it was. ...It was a long time ago, and they just happened to rerun it when Miles Davis died and I taped it, so you may not be able to find it, but yeah, it was cool and he had a good comeback. I think there are places where people might get asked that question; I think unfortunately some of those places are entertainment shows, like The Daily Show.

Sars: I was gonna say, is it more of a pranky --

Deggans: Yeah, it'd be more of a pranky kind of thing. I do think that 60 Minutes would still ask that question.

Sars: I think Colbert would ask it.

Deggans: If Steve Kroft was doing the interview, if Scott Pelley was doing the interview -- you know, I could maybe even see Anderson Cooper maybe asking that question. But could I see Ann Curry doing it, during a Dateline NBC interview? Ehhh. I could. Maybe.

Sars: As a journalist, she has lovely hair.

Deggans: Yeah, exactly. So, you know, I guess I could see that question being asked -- what I couldn't see is it being asked within the confines of a really compelling, well-done interview that was somehow illuminating on the subject, but also tough on the subject. Like, you got a sense that they tried hard not to let the celebrities get away with bullshit. But they also treated them fairly. So it wasn't this tabloidy nonsense, but they also tried to not let them slide on questions that were difficult -- you know, challenging Don Imus when he said off-camera that he hired somebody on his show to do nigger jokes. Classic Mike Wallace. Would some of these people now do that kind of stuff? I...no. No, man, I don't see it, I don't see it at all. I don't even see the sense that they feel like they should be doing it.

Sars: The only time that I had seen Russell Crowe challenged was by Steve Kroft, who I thought might be hit.

Deggans: Yeah. Yeah. But that's what you've gotta do. That's what you've gotta do, man, especially if you want to maintain that reputation of being the place where people go to get the real deal, when you know that 60 Minutes is doing a piece on thus-and-such, you know you're not gonna see bullshit. And there's just so many...I can't think of very many other venues where that's true. You know -- you know when you see it, you're not gonna see BS.

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Ask A TV Critic: Eric Deggans

Deggans: I'm trying to remember what he said -- I don't know if it makes me a geek but I actually have that on tape, I have that whole story on videotape at home. I can't remember exactly what he said, but I think he said something like he doesn't hate white people, but he had a good comeback and I cannot remember what it was. ...It was a long time ago, and they just happened to rerun it when Miles Davis died and I taped it, so you may not be able to find it, but yeah, it was cool and he had a good comeback. I think there are places where people might get asked that question; I think unfortunately some of those places are entertainment shows, like The Daily Show.

Sars: I was gonna say, is it more of a pranky --

Deggans: Yeah, it'd be more of a pranky kind of thing. I do think that 60 Minutes would still ask that question.

Sars: I think Colbert would ask it.

Deggans: If Steve Kroft was doing the interview, if Scott Pelley was doing the interview -- you know, I could maybe even see Anderson Cooper maybe asking that question. But could I see Ann Curry doing it, during a Dateline NBC interview? Ehhh. I could. Maybe.

Sars: As a journalist, she has lovely hair.

Deggans: Yeah, exactly. So, you know, I guess I could see that question being asked -- what I couldn't see is it being asked within the confines of a really compelling, well-done interview that was somehow illuminating on the subject, but also tough on the subject. Like, you got a sense that they tried hard not to let the celebrities get away with bullshit. But they also treated them fairly. So it wasn't this tabloidy nonsense, but they also tried to not let them slide on questions that were difficult -- you know, challenging Don Imus when he said off-camera that he hired somebody on his show to do nigger jokes. Classic Mike Wallace. Would some of these people now do that kind of stuff? I...no. No, man, I don't see it, I don't see it at all. I don't even see the sense that they feel like they should be doing it.

Sars: The only time that I had seen Russell Crowe challenged was by Steve Kroft, who I thought might be hit.

Deggans: Yeah. Yeah. But that's what you've gotta do. That's what you've gotta do, man, especially if you want to maintain that reputation of being the place where people go to get the real deal, when you know that 60 Minutes is doing a piece on thus-and-such, you know you're not gonna see bullshit. And there's just so many...I can't think of very many other venues where that's true. You know -- you know when you see it, you're not gonna see BS.

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