Tuesday, March 12, 2013

EXCLUSIVE!! The REAL story behind Ann Curry's firing.

There’s been much finger-pointing following the public execution – excuse me, “reassignment” of Ann Curry from her position as co-host of THE TODAY SHOW. Who’s to blame? NBC? Matt Lauer? Well, it turns out with all the corporate take-overs NBC has endured over the last couple of years, the man really pulling the strings is none other than Charles Montgomery Burns. This blog has received a secret tape made in his office that explains the whole messy affair. This is a byKenLevine.com exclusive. I expect to be flooded with calls from every major news organization and CNN.

But here first, for my loyal readers, is a transcription of that recording:
BURNS: Smithers! Ger in here!

SMITHERS: (over an intercom) Yes, sir.

(Burns hums “MMMBop” and two beats later Smithers is heard entering.)

BURNS: What took you so long?

SMITHERS: I was giving Dan Harmon notes.

BURNS:  What show is that nitwit on?


BURNS: Oh!  He needs to use Chevy Chase more!

SMITHERS: That’s exactly what I told him, sir.

BURNS: He’s the only one who’s funny on that misbegotten show.

SMITHERS: He should be the face of our network, sir.

BURNS: Without question! The kids love him.  But that’s not why I brought you in here, Smithers.

SMITHERS: Chelsea Handler said no to your sexual advances, sir.

BURNS: Drat!  Promise her a sitcom.

SMITHERS: Which hotel would you like me to reserve a suite?

BURNS: I don’t care. The one I had with that Whitney person will be fine.

SMITHERS: Ah, yes. The Times Square Marriott. The champagne, Viagra, and hair piece will all be chilled and waiting.

BURNS: Excellent! Now to the business at hand. We have to fire Ann Curry.

SMITHERS: Absolutely, sir. The girl has to go. I can't believe we waited this long.  But may I ask why?

BURNS: Why?  Why?  Why she had the audacity to slap my face.

SMITHERS: Uh, that was Julie Chen, sir.

BURNS: Oh. Well. The yearning has passed. Fire her anyway.

SMITHERS: I’m afraid that due to the union we’re going to have to show cause before we can do that, although it needs to be done.

BURNS: Damn those infernal unions! From now on I want MEET THE PRESS to come out of Ottawa. We'll break them, the bastards!

SMITHERS: Yes, but returning to Ann Curry…

BURNS: A reason for dismissal? Oh, fiddle-di-dee.  She doesn’t sparkle on cooking segments. Off with her head.

SMITHERS: That is unconscionable I will grant you that, but I’m not certain it’s enough -- avoiding-litigation-wise.

BURNS: There’s no chemistry.  How about that?

SMITHERS: Actually, I think she and Matt Lauer get along nicely.

BURNS:  I mean no chemistry between her and ME!

SMITHERS:  Gotcha, sir.  Zinc and Yttrium.

BURNS: She doesn’t measure up to past hosts. Now Deborah Norville, she was the oyster's ice skates. And the public loved her.

SMITHERS: You might be thinking of Katie Couric.  Or Jane Pauley.

BURNS: Well, whoever had the colonoscopy. Now that was great television. In fact, take a note: I want all NBC talent to have on-air colonoscopies. Let's see ONCE UPON A TIME compete with that!

SMITHERS: I of course agree with you that Ann Curry is a liability, but there may be a PR issue.

BURNS: How so? And stop sniveling on my desk.

SMITHERS: Sorry, sir.  Well, as valid as those reasons to let her go are, the public might not see it that way. And instead they might blame you, sir.

BURNS: Me? What did I do? Is it my fault she can’t cook a ham and is married to Les Moonves?

SMITHERS: Uh, that’s Julie Chen.

BURNS: Well, whoever says “This is TODAY on NBC” and is Asian, fire her sorry ass!  But do a colonoscopy first.  And blame someone else.

SMITHERS: Right.  Of course.  I suppose we could say Matt Lauer wanted her off the show.

BURNS: Who’s he?

SMITHERS: Her co-host.

BURNS: Yes! Yes! That’s it! He’s jealous of her talent. She wouldn’t sleep with him. Something like that so the public will be on his side.

SMITHERS: Only one problem, sir, although that is a brilliant idea.

BURNS: She did sleep with him. Oooh, wait’ll Moonves hears about that.

SMITHERS: No. I have a number of memos from Matt saying he really does believe in her and strongly advises we give her more time. Eventually, he claims, the audience will really love her.

BURNS: So he is sleeping with her.

SMITHERS: No. I believe that’s how he truly feels.

BURNS; Well, destroy those memos!   Shred them!

SMITHERS:  They're emails, sir.

BURNS:  Then shred the computers!  

SMITHERS: What if he goes to the press?

BURNS: Hmmm. We have to put the fear of God into him. I know. Make him host the Golden Globes red carpet show.

SMITHERS: Sir, with all due respect, he didn’t kill anybody.

BURNS: I don’t care! Besides, this will all blow over in two days. Nobody is going to care. I didn’t get to run the National Broadcast Company by not knowing precisely what the public likes and doesn’t like.

SMITHERS: Fair enough, sir. So who should replace her?

BURNS: I’ve had my eye on that Rachel Maddow. Call her and reserve my suite at the Times Square Marriott.  Chill the champagne and Viagra.  Heh heh heh!

SMITHERS: Alright, sir. But I really don’t think that’s going to play out the way you think it will.

(At that point the tape cut out.)


John said...

Mr. Burns probably should have thrown in something about "The Today Show" never having had more sex appeal than when Barbara Walters was in her heyday at the start of The New Frontier. And then tossed in a mention of her pluckiness in staying with the show after being mauled by J. Fred Muggs.

Johnny Walker said...

I have no idea who Ann Curry is, but this made me laugh!

solstice said...

While we're on the subject of NBC's decent into badness, as per my question last week, I found out the answer to why NBC's Deception so underdeveloped. The production team has never produced a television show, they previously were in charge of hosting websites! The show runner isn't exactly experienced in making a good television show either, except for Friday Night Lights most of her series were canceled after a few episodes.

It's a shame that good actors are being wasted on that horrible show.

Mac said...

Very good, Ken. I wish you were still on the Simpsons. As does anyone who remembers the classic years.

Anonymous said...

Very subtle ending.
Loved it.
Loved the implication, without
using CM name again.
Great stuff

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I meant RM.

Wendy M. Grossman said...

solstic: I'd say FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS is a pretty big exception!

I was surprised when I looked up the Kings to see that before THE GOOD WIFE they didn't seem to have done much.


The President of Cialis said...

Viagra references are so 2003. I've moved on to Cialis.

Anonymous said...

Never could stand Curry, Today's main emoter, and didn't care when she left. She went on to emote stories for other NBC programs, didn't she?

Jake Mabe said...

Here's a Friday question for you, Ken, that could be interpreted as funny but is meant seriously.

Is this NBC nadir worse than the "Hello, Larry" era? Obviously I know it is in terms of actual numbers. But if you figure in the splintered audience, etc., how does this compare?

Shortly after that '70s flounder, NBC rebounded in a big way with "Cosby," "Cheers," etc. I'm not sure I see that happening anytime soon now. What say you?

Larry said...

Speaking of The Simpsons, I heard Sam Simon is ill. Is he a friend of yours?

Anonymous said...

Umm.... I've heard it said that Dan Harmon was a self-confessed Adderall addict and barely functional alcoholic who sometimes showed up for work in his pajamas during his run on that show, didn't deliver scripts on time, barely held on in the ratings, yet always had enough time to argue with strangers on Twitter. By any alcoholics measure, Harmon made out like a bandit financially, leaving his entire cast holding the proverbial bag, while he laughs all the way to the bank.

By popular showrunner's ethics, if the rumors are true, isn't that considered being a shithead, Ken? If so, why are you using a shithead to support your complaint of shitheads?

You make it look like the entertainment field is too confusing to call, even from the peanut gallery.

CSmith said...

Very funny piece. At last we have an explanation for Whitney!

Storm said...

My husband heard a joke somewhere about how bad NBC sucks now, both in content and ratings; not being that much of a TV viewer, he asked me what they meant, and how bad was it? "Fred Silverman and 'Supertrain' Bad, my darling." He winced at the memory.

NBC Universal also owns SyFy, and holy cats, that station has become unwatchable tripe. They have the entire NBC AND Universal genre show/movie backlog at their disposal, yet they play crappy D-grade monster movies, shows about ghosts and haunted crap, and wrestling. WRESTLING. The only time I ever lay eyes on it anymore is to watch "FaceOff", the reality show/competition for special effects make-up artists, because I learn new things for my costuming. I used to love SciFi Channel SO much, but when "FaceOff" isn't on, I stay away as far as I can. They own "Chiller Channel" as well, and it's even worse; they used to play "Night Stalker" and "Twin Peaks", now it's cheesy slasher movies, awful zombie movies, and endless reruns of "Tales From the Darkside". YEESH.

Has the NBC Situation gotten worse since Universal took over, is that what's going on, or part of it anyway? Because they can't seem to program any of the stations they own worth a crap, and this trend seems to have started about 4 or 5 years ago; formerly great stations just suddenly turning to crap.

Cheers, thanks a lot,