I can't imagine a worse TV vehicle for Paula, especially the kind of talk show she envisions. She said, "It would be a lot of fun variety with a ton of unexpected stuff and tributes to everyday people getting their big chance."
That sounds perfectly cloying, especially if you assume that Paula will be pretty much herself, pretty much like she was on American Idol, which was uncritical, sweet, gentle and pleasantly unfocused.
That means you'd have to be up late and probably pretty bored with infomercials to not surf away from the jugglers, puppets, plate spinners, gymnasts and other novelty acts likely on the program.
TBS is serious about this concept, tentatively called The TBS Comedy Roadshow, and if they emphasize the comedy aspect, maybe it'll find a niche. But the term vaudeville makes me very wary.
As we've told you before, this is the 60th anniversary of the Emmy Awards. The September 21 show, telecast on ABC, will not only celebrate the Best Actresses and Best Dramas of the current prime time lineup, it will also celebrate the many stars and characters and shows of 10, 20, 40, 60 years ago.
ABC has created an ad that features a lot of those stars. A lot of the stars are easy to find and it's a no-brainer that they were included (Marge and Homer, Rod Serling, Dick Van Dyke, Stewie, the South Park guys, etc), but I'm happy to also see some people I didn't think would be in such an ad: Guy Williams as Zorro, Robert Culp from I Spy, Mike Connors from Mannix, Tim Daly from Wings, Wally Cox from Mr. Peepers, among others.
Every season I get sucked into watching Nashville Star by the simple fact that I love cover songs. From the truly great ones like Hendrix doing "All Along The Watchtower" or Soundgarden's incredible spin on Black Sabbath's "Into The Void," right on through to the absurdly obscure, like Shakira playing "Back In Black," they're all good. For me, Nashville Star is just a big weekly collection of odd covers.
It's with that thought process that I was tuned in again this week, when something caught my ear. Ashlee Hewitt's (pictured) first performance was the classic Steve Miller Band tune, "Take The Money And Run." There was one odd little exception though. Your years of classic rock radio should have taught you that Billy Joe and Bobbie Sue were "two young lovers with nothing better to do, than sit around the house, get high, and watch the tube." Suddenly this week, they changed to "two young lovers, with nothing better to do, than sit around the house, sit around, and watch the tube." That just isn't right. See for yourself, after the jump.
For most, memories of George Carlin on television come from his many HBO specials starting from the 1970s and continuing up until the present day. For others, it was his appearance during the very first Saturday Night Live back in 1975. But, there was another George Carlin that many don't remember. That is the very young George Carlin from the 1960s.
Before the beard, and the long hair, and the swearing and his "the world is doomed" attitude, George Carlin was a traditional suit-and-tie stand-up comic. He began by teaming up with comedian Jack Burns in the late 1950s, then eventually went his own way. During that time he came up with a number of famous routines including "The Indian Sergeant," "The Hippy-Dippy Weatherman," and "Wonderful WINO." Many of these routines would be performed on shows like The Tonight Show (both the Jack Paar and Johnny Carson versions) and the Ed Sullivan Show.
After the jump you'll see two examples of his mid-60s television appearances.
A roundup of TV people from in front of the camera and behind the scenes who have passed away.
- James Callahan: He played the grandfather on Charles In Charge. He had appearances on several shows over the years, including Medium, ER, Promised Land, Cybill, Caroline in the City, Picket Fences, Golden Girls, M*A*S*H, Adam-12, The Invanders, Route 66, The Time Tunnel, My Favorite Martian, Dennis The Menace, and dozens of others. He died of cancer at age 76.
Below I've placed a Muppet sketch from the Ed Sullivan Show, though don't expect to see any familiar faces like Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie or Gonzo.
The bit is actually quite simple: a slinky-like Muppet dances a little jig while his smaller friend tries to join in. What I love about this bit is that it demonstrates how talented the Muppet puppeteers are. The choreography and movements of the two puppets is very subtle, and no movement is superfluous. Watch how the little Muppet examines the "feet" of the bigger Muppet. It's no more than a slight twist of the puppet's "head," but it conveys volumes.
Muppet fans know that some characters evolve while others just spring up from out of nowhere. Cookie Monster, for example, began life as somewhat more ferocious-looking monster (the row of sharp teeth helped) in several commercials before being toned down and brought to Sesame Street.
In the clip below, a pre-Sesame Street Cookie Monster devours a machine while the machine describes how it works and what its many functions are. Actually, it only has one main function, but you'll have to watch the clip for that.
Do you know what today is? I'll tell you what day it is: it's Elvis' birthday. In honor of the King, I'm going to teach all of you how to do a passable Elvis impersonation. Here's what you do: speaking in the lowest register your voice can reach, say this line: "A hubba hayba hubba hayba baby." Gyrate your hips while doing this and sneer. Now marry a teenager. Now take drugs and die. There you go, you're a rock and roll icon.