Monday, May 01, 2006

Colbert in the bear's den

Stephen Colbert is easily the smartest comedian in the business today (apologies to Jon Stewart, but I'm guessing he would agree also). As of Saturday night, he is also the bravest. At the annual White House press dinner, Colbert, who plays a right-wing pundit on his show The Colbert Report, absolutely killed both anyone from this Administration and all those reporters who are enabling them. His devastating satirical tribute revealed Colbert's admirable fearlessness directly in the face of what had to have been an overwhelmingly hostile (or at least ignorant) audience. (For those of you without a broadband connection, here is a transcript of his assault.) Unsurprisingly, the useless mainstream media (whom Colbert appropriately lambasted) chose not to comment on his performance for the most part, leading their stories instead on the insipid Bush impersonator that immediately preceded Colbert. (Editor and Publisher, though, got it. As they usually do.) My guess is that his comedy went right over the heads of most in attendance; his interviews on The Report are sometimes wincingly painful because of the interviewees not being in on his joke. In any case, kudos are due to Colbert for his biting humor, but more importantly, his brazenness in taking on the Administration and their press lackeys on their own turf. If only non-comedians would become this intrepid . . .


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