In case you're not so over the whole thing already that you're under it -- and Joe R and I have pretty much had it with the Academy by this point -- here's a quick rundown of notable coverage around the internet.
You can start right here on TWoP with the real-time blog of the telecast, featuring me, Joe R, Odie, and Matt Zoller Seitz. We've also put together a Fametracker-style Galaxy Of Fame that you may care to enjoy.
Elsewhere, Joe R presents his alternative nominees; Green Cine Daily analyzes the victories (and offers a buttload of links to other critiques of the telecast, the winners, and What It All Means); A.O. Scott puts the Oscars in context; and you aren't only one wondering what the F was going on with some of those outfits (no more drunk stitch-and-bitches for you, Mrs. Day-Lewis) -- the Fug Girls have got you covered.
Growing up in the 1980s, I didn't watch a lot of traditional "holiday specials." No special guests coming over, no singing songs by the fire, nothing like that -- just Charlie Brown, the Grinch and little Ralphie for me. So all I know about the golden age of holiday specials is what I've seen parodied on Saturday Night Live ("I'm Gumby, dammit!"). But from what I've seen, Stephen Colbert really nailed it in A Colbert Christmas, his Comedy Central Christmas special, which aired last night, although I can only imagine that his was a million times funnier, and that this time the humor was intentional. I would even go out on a limb and call it a new holiday staple, like A Christmas Story, although I don't know if I'd want it to play 24 hours in a row. Here are the five funniest moments from last night's airing.
For anyone who didn't watch last night's episode of The Colbert Report (it'll be rerun once more tonight), I wanted to post this clip. Holy shit, Jon Stewart was a baby! And nothing ages a clip like stone-washed jeans and plaid flannel. However, Colbert is right -- Conan hasn't aged in fifteen years. It's a little creepy!
So in the great tradition of list-making for the sake of list-making, Entertainment Weekly brings you the 50 Greatest TV Icons Of All Time Ever Bar None No Matter What, or whatever they're calling it. It's not that I don't enjoy a good photo gallery as much as the next person, but damn, a list of 50 and the only way to see them is to click through every one individually? That is diabolical, man.
Anyway. A few questions:
1. Jimmy Smits is a bigger icon than Larry Hagman? Really? I mean...I guess so? But Jimmy Smits wasn't involved in the biggest television-changing event of all time, to be honest. He was good on L.A. Law and very good on NYPD Blue, but now he's in Cane, and in case you haven't noticed, nobody cares.
2. Enough with Lassie, TV nostalgia people. I'm serious.
3. Jon Stewart should be higher than #41. That's television-changing television he's involved with, and he is the face of it, no matter how hot Colbert is now. He invented what he does, really, or he at least perfected it, and before him, it was a show trying to do the same thing and doing it only one-tenth as well.
4. I was totally jazzed to see Heather Locklear at #25, because: absolutely. Absolutely. My best friend and I have discussed her as a great example of why you should always try to be great to work with. She's had a million chances to make "comebacks" she really doesn't need, and you can tell everybody loves to work with her. She's always funny, she's criminally underrated as a charismatic presence, and she overcame a totally insubstantial cheesecake image to turn into a lady I'm always happy to see on anything I watch. And I think it's completely adorable that she's dating Jack Wagner. Good for them. Go be happy together, '80s icons!
5. I continue to believe that some of the most famously "beloved" television comedy was not funny. The TWoP book is on record as anti-Lucy, and while I'm not exactly anti, I can certainly say I don't get what the fuss is about. Ditto Milton Berle, because Jesus, I'm not a person who laughs at just a man in a dress.
6. You can't have Simon Cowell and have no representation from Survivor. Shoulda had Hatch, I think.
7. I was all set to complain about the lack of anything remotely recent, but I'm prepared to admit that honestly, aging well is part of what being an icon is about. I'm sure there are people appearing right now who will one day be icons, but it's hard to say who they are. Patrick Dempsey? Conan O'Brien? Hayden Pannetiere? Kyle Chandler? No idea. But EW will be there with click-through pictures of every one of them.
Now that we know the ceremony is definitely on...should it be? Host Jon Stewart and his writers will have less than two weeks to assemble some material, which everyone involved seems to think is a very very very tight deadline. On the other hand, maybe if they don't have days and days to futz around with it, it'll mean less time spent second-guessing what are probably good comedic ideas. And let's face it, it's not as though past telecasts that have been written over a period of months have generally been all that uproarious anyway. In fact, maybe the real question will be whether we can tell the difference, quality-wise, between this show and others that have had longer to gestate.
A nation was enthralled last week by the scrap that spanned A Daily Show, The Colbert Report, and Late Night With Conan O'Brien (culminating on O'Brien's show, here). And with a dearth of new material as the WGA strike winds down, Late Night has posted some great behind-the-scenes outtakes. I have to say, I loved the brawl; my favourite thing is when Colbert or O'Brien gets to do a field piece and goof off because they're both so hammy. Stewart is always kind of too cool for school, but he did his best with this thing. (Link via EW Popwatch.)
Today's news is chock full of surprises (Daniel Tosh outranking Jon Stewart & Stephen Colbert?) and some not so surprising (Goodbye to High Society), if you have any sense of dignity when it comes to your TV lineup.
Thanks, God! I was hoping you'd been listening to my prayers about Stephen Colbert making a one-hour musical Christmas special featuring the likes of Elvis Costello, Feist, Jon Legend, Willie Nelson and token Jew Jon Stewart! And I'm not even that mad that you insisted on putting that assmongrel Toby Keith on the bill, because I know I'm not the only one in the universe (or at least that's the game we're pretending today). From what I can tell, this little revue you've whipped up, which you wisely decided to call A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All, sounds almost identical to A Muppet Family Christmas: Colbert gets snowed in at his cabin upstate and weathers the storm (lit'rally) by singing songs with all his buddies. (Ohhh, and Toby Keith even looks like Miss Piggy! This analogy totally works!)