Friday, December 02, 2005

The Ed Sullivan Show (with Jon Stewart)

Seems to me The Daily Show has been off its game* ever since Stephen Colbert fissioned off to form The Colbert Report. Jon Stewart is putting out his best effort . . . oh, boy, is he trying hard. Last night, he had on some indie duo, the White Stripes, which made me bless my mute button. Meanwhile, The Colbert Report has sparkled all week long. He launched on Monday with string theorist Brian Greene (paraphrasing: "So, to understand string theory, I'd need to first understand quantum mechanics and relativity, right? Explain all that in thirty seconds, if you would.") On Tuesday, author Richard Preston (The Hot Zone; The Demon in the Freezer) went into excruciating detail about the bad form of smallpox -- yes, you should be thankful if you only get run-of-the-mill smallpox -- and on Wednesday, Stephen had fun with Katrina vanden Heuvel, publisher of The Nation. Last night, he and Richard Clarke riffed off one another . . . . . . and Jon Stewart gave us White Stripes. So, what happened? Did Colbert take the best writers with him, or (my suspicion) was he one of the Daily Show's best writers? My advice, which I base on fifteen years experience in the nasal mucus and ear wax business: expand your talent search, Jon, both for writers and reporters. Regarding the reporters: I love Rob Corddry and Samantha Bee, but the rest of 'em are weak links. D. *Case in point: last night, The Daily Show played a video clip of Dubya singing with a group of carolers. Watch the guy's lips: he didn't know the words of a common carol. Did the writers capitalize on this video? Nope. It played without comment. Technorati tag: , ,


Anonymous Beth said...

Um. I love the White Stripes. And they're really big right now. They qualify as a hot act because they are Suddenly Popular. Um, with the young kids, though, so maybe that's your problem... ;)

12/02/2005 08:41:00 AM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

Yeah, Beth, I'm one of those old fogies who happily listens to my Nine Inch Nails & Garbage & Tool, and complains about you young whippersnappers and yer rock'n'roll ;o)

12/02/2005 08:58:00 AM  
Anonymous fiveandfour said...

That's funny, because I was thinking the exact same thing upon seeing those two shows last night.

I had tuned in to the first Colbert Report and thought it needed a little adjustment, and checked back a couple of times and found it more appealing - then last night's show had me hooked. He handled the Clarke interview fabulously well and, I think, it probably came out better than it would have had the same thing been attempted with Jon.

12/02/2005 11:25:00 AM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

Jon just had Clarke on the other night. Not a bad interview, but not memorable, either.

12/02/2005 12:31:00 PM  
Anonymous Davd Munger said...

I'd say they go in waves. I haven't seen last night's shows yet (they're TiVoed, though), but this has definitely been a good week for Colbert. Colbert, I felt, sagged a little after the first couple days, so it's nice to see a resurgence there.

I'd have to agree with you that Jon needs another good correspondent or two. In addition to Corrdry and Bee, I also like Ed Helms.

12/02/2005 03:17:00 PM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

Yup, Dave, I forgot about Ed Helms. I agree with you about Colbert's second week. Perhaps it was NaNoWriMo, but I lost interest after his debut week.

12/02/2005 04:17:00 PM  
Blogger Lyn Cash said...

My son loves Colbert - I'm usually writing while he's in there but need to watch the show if you AND The Kid enjoy him. Used to have a tv in the office...I thought watching a good movie along the lines of what I was writing helped. May need to go back to that, but right now I'm afraid the output wouldn't balance with the intake - lol.

12/03/2005 08:36:00 AM  

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