Thursday, January 01, 2009

Note to Dick Clark

The Friday questions will return next week. I have some year beginning thoughts and figure I better serve them while they’re hot.Time-Warner and Viacom settled. Thank God, I don’t know what I’d do if I couldn’t watch all my favorite shows on the N network.

Note to Dick Clark: We love you buddy but never go on television again. The first year was courageous. Now it’s just beyond sad. I found myself relieved when they cut away from you to go to Kellie Pickler. Honestly. You’ve had a great career. And I wish you many many more happy years. But please, not on TV.

That said, I’d still rather watch Dick Clark than Carson Daly.

Just three more weeks before America has a leader again. How’d you like to be the agent trying to get George Bush speaking engagements?

Note to GM CEO: The next time you need a bailout instead of flying your private jet to Washington to ask for my money, fly to Tampa and get it from the New York Yankees.

Good to see Stephanie Edwards back co-hosting the Rose Parade with snake oil salesman, Bob Eubanks. When one of your greatest talents is parade hosting you better land the gigs when you can.

Former NBA star now commentator Charles Barkley was busted for DUI Wednesday morning in Phoenix. He ran a stop sign. His excuse to the cops: He was in a hurry to get a blowjob. Barkley was taken into custody so I guess you could say he didn’t get off… twice.

January is traditionally the dumping ground for bad new movies. Does that mean that PAUL BLART: MALL COP might not be the classic we expect?

Thanks to PC Magazine for naming this one of their favorite blogs. PC’s are one of my favorite computers.

The New Year’s Day NHL game at Wrigley Field was disappointing. What’s the point of playing hockey if it’s not in a blizzard? And too bad Harry Caray isn’t still alive to lead the crowd in “Oh Canada!”

How does Brent Musburger, the worst football announcer EVER, get to broadcast the Rose Bowl? My favorite call: A USC Trojan returned a kickoff to the eleven yard line. Or, as Brent called it: "He's shy of the twenty." He's shy of midfield too. Musburger also made enough baseball references to qualify as the worst baseball announcer as well.

Best TV marathon: Looney Tunes all day on the Cartoon Network. Even better than the WHAT I LIKE ABOUT YOU marathon on the N network.

Worst looking bowl: Roady’s Humanitarian Bowl in Boise. Football fields are green not blue! I feel bad for anybody just getting their new flat screens trying to adjust the color.

And now come the NFL playoffs. Finally, some football this week that means something.

40 comments :

Alice said...

Happy New year! Looking forward to read most of what you have to say :)

Mark Edwards said...

I'm glad I wasn't the only person kind of creeped out and sad at the same time at the sight of Dick Clark Wednesday night. I admire and respect him, know I wouldn't be doing what I do for a living if it weren't for watching him all my life, and hope to meet him before one of us goes. That being said, I'd like to be able to remember him as the World's Oldest Teenager and media tycoon, not as the person his health has turned him into. I agree with you. Dick, please leave with dignity and let us celerate your entire career, not the last three years.

maven said...

Happy New Year, Ken, to you and your family.

We sure cringed whenever Dick Clark came on. So sad....

Dr. Leo Marvin said...

Brent Musburger, the worst football announcer EVER

You can say that again.

Happy New Year. Best to all.

Anonymous said...

"Burnt Hamburger" aptly named by Jim Healy, "proclaims" a game ranther than announce one. He is the worst of all the bad football annnouncers. Now, I just turn off the sound. If I was at a game, and some one next to me talked as much as todays game announcers, I'd call security and have them removed from the stadium. You've either got Abbott and Costello or The Three Stooges in the booth. If I wanted them, I'd tune to the Comedy Channel (it's still on, glad I sold my Viacom stock). They should all listen to Vin Scully and learn how to call a game. Less is more (better).

Matt said...

There are quite a few things you write about that I agree with, but this is not one of them.

I don't think that just because a person has had an illness, an injury, or a medical condition that we should banish him like a leper because seeing him might make someone uncomfortable. If Dick wants to work and can find a company that will hire him, I say Rock on, Dick. This shows real determination and guts. And if this is what it takes to make him feel good, I'm all for it.

If Dick appearing in his current condition is going to "tarnish his image" then I think that is not the fault of Dick, but of the person who has such a frail image of him that Dick showing that he is human could make them think less of him.

Sandy Koufax said...

I know the contest is way over, however, I couldn't pass this one up. My word verification is...CULCISSI.

Isn't that the guy that is very proud of the big lump in his pants.

Corinne said...

Does that mean that PAUL BLART: MALL COP might not be the classic we expect?

I'll be sure to let you know. From the moment the first commercial hit the airwaves my boys (ages 12 and 9) have clamored to go see it. At least the ad reached the right demographic, LOL.

Here's a Friday question in advance for you: How easy was it to get someone like Sir Derek Jacobi to guest star on "Frasier"? Unless you watch a lot of PBS, he's not that well-known over here. He was absolutely brilliant, as I would expect (I've seen him on stage and met him a couple of times) but what made casting think of him?

Also the casting of Patrick Macnee was a nice touch and surprise, especially his quip to Roz that he had an affinity for brunettes--a sly reference to "The Avengers." My only quibble was it was a very brief cameo.

Thanks, and Happy New Year, Ken.

And while I know the contest is over, my word verification is DERNEUD: A magazine for German nudists.

Dave Mackey said...

I'm not all that skeeved by the annual appearance of Dick Clark's shell of his former self. I think this year, he showed more of his natural humor and cheekiness that we came to expect from him before the stroke. Lots more laughing, too. And Kari Clark's holding up pretty well... IIRC, she was originally a production assistant on "Bandstand", and they've been together well over 30 years by now.

Believe it or not, the Looney Tunes marathon wasn't all that great, and I ought to know since I've been studying these films for the past 35 years. In the intervening years since the cartoons were last regularly programmed on CN, Warner Bros. has embarked on an ambitious restoration program for the cartoons, going back to the successive-exposure (each frame represented by three different greytone color profiles) negatives and making new prints by computer using modern techniques that far exceeded the limits imposed by the old Technicolor imbibition process. Warner Bros. has restored over 400 of its over 1000 cartoons so far. None of these prints showed up on CN yesterday.

But the "What I Like About You" marathon is still hanging on! There were some very funny people on that show like Leslie Grossman and Wesley Jonathan. It's amazing how Amanda Bynes' fans kept this one going for four seasons.

Word verification is "ambking" - one who has made his/her fortune in medical transport.

Mary Stella said...

Just three more weeks before America has a leader again. How’d you like to be the agent trying to get George Bush speaking engagements? This makes me think of the scene in Frost-Nixon where Nixon gives a talk to a very bored group of (I think) dentists and totally bombs.


And now come the NFL playoffs. Finally, some football this week that means something.

Go Eagles!!!!!!!!

Wayne said...

One improvement for 2009. "Filling in for Brent Musburger.... Dick Clark!"

Maytagman said...

Happy New Years Mr. Levine,

Did you just assert that there are GAMES of football (or any game*) that matter?

Silly, silly fellow ;)

*Exception: You are actually playing in said game and earn based on the outcome. Further, who is an Angelino like you to pull for? The Chargers?

Matt said...

"A USC Trojan returned a kickoff to the elven yard line."

If you are going to criticize someone it's probably best not to misspell a word in the process. "Eleven" not "elven" or was there a Santa-like workshop set up at that part of the field?

1031 said...

My favorite part of Brent Musberger's commentary was when he called the game for USC with about nine minutes to play in the first half. I thought, "Hell, if Brent thinks it's over, it must be over."

I then played a video game for about four hours.

emily said...

Happy New Year, Your Royal Snarkness.

Sparky said...

Every New Year I say I'm not going to watch Dick Clark next year because it's too sad. This year I mean it. His voice and delivery haven't improved at all. It's time, Dick.

Maybe they should announce next year as his farewell and make a big deal out of it with a prime time special, perhaps.

Tom Quigley said...

The macabre sight two years ago of Dick Clark trying to even get thrugh pronouncing a couple of words while his eyes seemed to stare blankly off into space was too much for me to stomach. Now at least he is understandable and is able to focus on the camera, but I agree with those who think it's time for him to hang it up. I don't know whether it's just vanity or ego, but he doesn't need to do it any longer. Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve will survive just fine without Mr. Eternal Teenager trying to take part in it till he kicks it.

Verification word: robillia -- a hallucinatory mental condition which makes a person think that he or she once directed Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan in a comedy....

John Wheeler said...

RE: Brent Musberger. You are so right, Ken. Musberger kept saying some defender was "in centerfield," which was so annoying and confusing. But now THAT would have fit during the hockey game at Wrigley!

Kirk Jusko said...

There was a Loony Tune marathon yesterday? Damn! I gave up on the Cartoon Network some time ago.

pusent: the one thing you don't want to find in that stocking!

MichaelG said...

Happy New Year and thanks again for your wonderful blog.

Mushburger is the worst. I can’t begin to tell you how tired I am of his Keith Jackson impersonation. And why was the camera on him all the time? I thought there was supposed to be a football game in progress.

“CALISTAC”—when you blow up doing your exercises you go . . .

Roger Owen Green said...

Odd thing about that TW/Viacom thing - the first place I read about it was on your blog. It made the local paper's e-mail the afternoon of Dec 31.

Roger Owen Green said...

Oh, LAST week had football that mattered! Eagles, Vikes, Dolphins, Chargers. Not to mention Bears, Patriots and Bucs. Oh, and the Lions. You can't often get to see perfection these days.

Captcha: underge, which I initially read as underage.

Mike McCann said...

Ken,

Like Kirk, I stopped watching Cartoon Network when they stopped airing the classics, so I missed the special. Interestingly, as opposed to Sci-Fi (which let most local TV critics know about their Twilight Zone marathon) and WPIX (with The Honeymooners), there was no word in any of our local papers regarding the marathon on C-N.

Re Dick Clark, I'm torn -- in some ways, it's inspirational to other stroke victims that life goes on after such a medical setback. On the other hand, it hurts to see one of my idols having the gift of his speaking skills seriously impaired. Yes, I'm one of those boomers who fondly remembers watching Bandstand afternoons after school. And of course, when Dick's company owns and produces the show, who's going to tell him that it's time to step aside?

Mike said...

Re: Dick Clark comments: Tasteless excuse for "humor". Yay, let's all make fun of stroke victims. Come on, Ken, you're better than that. (And here's the part where you deny making fun of him, go ahead.)

Ref said...

Thanks to Corinne for bringing up Patrick McNee, one of my all-time faves. He was given the first script for The Avengers and refused to do it unless Steed was allowed to use his brolly instead of a gun. He'd served in combat in WW2 and didn't care to have any further business with firearms or their representations.

Michael Green said...

I also quit watching the Cartoon Network when it quit airing real cartoons. So I also missed most of the marathon. Mercifully, I taped a lot of things over the years.

My Brent Musburger story. Remember that CBS unloaded him when he was doing the NFL Today, the NCAA championships, the college football pre-game, and the US Open, and he was about to do baseball (including the World Series) and the Olympics. Then he signed with ABC. He's on a late-night WFAN show in New York and asked about ABC and says his first event is the Little League World Series. He says, "I've ALWAYS wanted to do the Little League World Series." Then, he said, "I'll be doing The Hambletonian. I've ALWAYS wanted to do The Hambletonian." And he was serious and seemed to think listeners would believe him!

steve said...

Cartoon Network Looney Tunes Marathon - classic. Just fine, fine stuff. And Boomerang was running a Tom and Jerry marathon.

My boys, 13, 10, and 7 (not their real names) eschewed their normal allotment of modern toons and were bouncing back and forth between those two marathons, and I was filled with hope for the next generation. They DO have taste in animated entertainment, after all!

5w30 said...

It's amazing how the humor in the Honeymooners holds up ... 53 years or so after they were captured on film! Ralph, Alice, Norton and Trixie are the best antidote to all that is b-s out there.
Especially Musberger.

girard31 said...

Personally, I could give a crap one way or the other about Dick Clark, but I am tiring of the snarkiness.

If you don't like watching Grampa struggle with his speech, DON'T WATCH!!!! The show will get bad ratings and will go away...

Tallulah Morehead said...

"girard31 said...
Personally, I could give a crap one way or the other about Dick Clark, but I am tiring of the snarkiness."

Then perhaps you should read a different blog, as this one is proudly Snark Central.

And frankly, I'm sick of all these damn jokes you fill your columns with. If I wanted to laugh, I'd watch HEE HAW! Let's get some depressing posts going. Sick kids! Huh? How do you like that?

It's like going to Disneyland.com and complaining that all they ever do is talk about Disneyland. "When will you do a post on the attraction refurbishments in Darfur?"

BTW, If you don't enjoy sick kids then skip the Rose Parade, because every third float has sick kids all over it. "Riding on this float are brave blind kids." "The kids on this float are all cancer survivors." "The kids on this float all suffer from Terminal Bad Fashion Sense." I kepe waiting to see one float that is a total, hideous mess, and hearing that "All the volunteers who decorated this float are courageous blind children with leprousy." And how come we never hear about the cowardly blind kids? Apparently, all blind kids are brave.

But then, I wouldn't watch Dick Clark bring in the New Year even back in his prime. I may be drunk, but I'm not THAT drunk!

Cheers darlings.

Right Above Me said...

Wow. What a bitch.

Tallulah Morehead said...

"Right Above Me said...
Wow. What a bitch."

If I'm right above you, wouldn't that make you my bitch? Just asking.

What's the problem? I highly doubt any brave blind kids will read these comments.

I hear they're renaming it: "The Morose Parade."

Cheers darling.

Anonymous said...

Actually forcing you on to would make you the bitch, I think. And an extremely bitter and whiny one, at that, judging by your postings and blog. How sad. Enjoy Pastor Warren on the 20th! Kisses!

Tallulah Morehead said...

I have my "Mute" button all tuned up and in top working order in preperation for Rick Warren on the 20th. He'll be moving his lips, but I won't be hearing his vile bile.

And I'm not bitter. I'm tart. In fact, I've been called a tart all my life. As for me being "Whiny," actually, I'm winey, or even "Wino," a lovely white wine today.

You wrote "Actually forcing you on to would make you the bitch, I think." There must be something missing from that sentence, as I am unable to make sense of it. There's something else missing from your posting. What is it? Oh yes, your name. Easy to be brave and insulting when anonymous, isn't it? At least I attach my name to my posts.

Glad you enjoyed my blog darling. Are you a follower of Rick Warren's?

Cheers.

The Crutnacker said...

I'd rather watch Dick Clark embalmed than Ryan Secrest. Maybe that's just me.

As for Brett Musburger, I can only guess that somewhere he has a picture of every network executive at an orgy with livestock.

Tallulah Morehead said...

"The Crutnacker said...
I'd rather watch Dick Clark embalmed than Ryan Secrest. Maybe that's just me."

There's another option: turn the TV off, and just get drunk with friends.

Cheers.

WV: miski. Johnny Mathis's big hit in Russia.

David K. M. Klaus said...

I think, as with so much of what we see on television, we project onto the image on the screen our own concerns, joys, and fears, yours truly not excepted. I worked in a stroke rehabilitation hospital unit for five years. Yes, it hurts to see someone you loved in their youth now in their twilight years, after injury from which they will never fully recover. It's a reminder that our days are coming, too, and we none of us want to think about that.

But Dick Clark is reminding us, like Dylan Thomas, that we don't have to go gently into that good night, but that we can indeed rage against the dying of the light. Entropy will out, but we don't have to be still for it. Every year he continues to do the ball drop, he's spitting in the eye of fate and defiantly telling the world that his head will not be bowed, that he's going down swinging.

For one night each year, like Lou Gehrig, Dick Clark tells us he's the luckiest man on Earth. For one night each year, Dick Clark is a Hero.

The Crutnacker said...

Dick Clark has been dropping the ball for almost as long as I've been alive. Since I was about six, I've found a way to catch his show every year since. So while his appearance does sadden me when I see that he isn't immortal, I also know that when he retires or dies, a tradition I've known and secretly and superstitiously cherished all of my life will disappear.

As for Carson Daly, I think they're figuring if someone's drunk, he looks enough like a young Clark not to care.

Anonymous said...

Why must me all cringe and look the other way if somebody has a disability? Dick Clark is still the same man he always was. He just had a stroke. Frankly, I'm ashamed at all of you for feeling he shouldn't be on at all. What we all hate are REMINDERS OF OUR OWN MORTALITY. You go ahead, Dick, and be on the show as long as you want. God Bless You. In sharp contrast, I hear there were a lot of shit-faced winners/losers/presenters at the Golden Globes last night who SHOULD have been kept offstage!

iampostal said...

dick clarks speech impediment isnt what bothers me. what truly creeps me out about him is he is 81 years old trying to still look 30...seriously think of any 81 year old person you know...they look....well...old...what i see in dick clark is a man either with a loss of mental capacity or the world s biggest case of denial...creepy creepy creepy