Monday, January 01, 2007

Welcome to the '07

Happy New Year, everybody! Couple of minor pieces of business before TV gets back to normal (relatively) starting tomorrow.

First, David Mills -- who you might remember from his writing for such shows as "NYPD Blue," "Homicide," "ER," "The Corner" and "The Wire," not to mention his own creation, "Kingpin" -- has joined the blogosphere under his nom de guerre, Undercover Black Man. A heavy emphasis on his love of funk music, and a lot of the early entries deal with the death of James Brown.

Second, what say you all on Dick Clark's continued involvement as an on-camera presence on "New Year's Rockin' Eve"? I'm torn. On the one hand, he invented the thing, his ability to keep appearing on it has been the prime motivator in his rehab, and in general I find it shameful the way Hollywood treats the old and infirm. On the other hand, the stroke has eliminated the smoothness that was the bulk of his appeal as a TV personality. (His canniness as a producer was his greatest asset overall, though.) Given my own experience with stroke victims, his speech isn't likely to improve much past where it is now, and his rhythms overall were so off that he was 3 or 4 seconds behind both the graphics and the crowd on the countdown to New Year's.

Ah, to hell with it. It's not like he's a Supreme Court Justice trying to hang on into his late 80s; this is a New Year's Eve countdown show, and it's his thing. As long as he wants to do it, I say let him.

What say the rest of you?

17 comments:

Colleen said...

I agree, Alan. Let Dick Clark do his New Year's Eve thing as long as he wants. True, we were a little uncomfortable last night as he lagged on the countdown. But then again, my husband and I were both happy to see that his speech had improved over last year. His inflections have started to sound like the Dick Clark of old. Having lost both my elderly parents in the last 12 months, I know that being on air makes Dick feel more like his old self than anything else could. And doesn't he deserve that?

Jaynee said...

I'm with you on letting him do it, and cheered when he made it to "1" just in time for the 2007 to light up.

Tosy And Cosh said...

Count me as the first nay, then. After all, the vast majority of the on-camera job is all about talking, and at this point he very simply can't do the job.

kat said...

I so agree.
It's a count down to the new year, not a rocket launch. :)

Anonymous said...

If Dick Clark wants to do this every year, good luck, God bless and we'll see you at the end of 2007. I understand people are uncomfortable but he's not performing brain surgery and every minute he's on the screen, Ryan Seacrest isn't (or isn't as important). For that great national service alone, I think he should stay as long as he wants.

Fred App said...

I felt uncomfortable watching him, even to the point of cringing and squirming. But he's not there for my comfort. The guy has earned the right to do what he wants to do, and the network owes him for all the years he carried the franchise. So if this is his wish, I say God bless him and good luck.

Eric said...

I'd like to see him continue to be involved, but with a pre-taped segment of some kind, rather than doing the countdown live.

Dan Coyle said...

I was watching Fox's New Year's Eve. Who was the Austrailian chick?

Also, someone lent me the old War of the Worlds TV show on DVD. If I could, I'd go back in time and beat my ten year old self for watching it.

Although it proved to me that Rachel Blanchard has always looked sort of weird.

Steve Brown said...

That D. Mills blog has an Amazon link asking people to pre-order "Mingering Mike." I'm glad to see that. I'd run across a reference to this book & forgotten about it. Mike sounds like one of those outsider artists whose life obsession is hugely ambitious & has been actually achieved. Like the Watts Towers.

Here's the Amazon link (is there an easy way for us commenters to attach a link to a phrase, instead to pasting in the whole bloody thing?):

http://www.amazon.com/Mingering-Mike-Dori-Hadar/dp/156898569X/sr=11-1/qid=1167711516/ref=sr_11_1/104-5210285-3027958

spb

Kim Cosmopolitan said...

I found it kinda uncomfortable, but also kinda nice. And infinitely better than last year.

Dan -- the chick on Fox was Cat Deeley, who I believe is British, not Australian. She's the host of So You Think You Can Dance.

Anonymous said...

He's a doberman. Let him have his ears.

Alan Sepinwall said...

Steve, Blogger allows you to use a few HTML tags in comments, so just wrap an HREF tag around your link, and you could tell people to go straight here.

Katie V said...

I think he's earned the right, and people who are uncomfortable with it would do well to get over it, especially with an aging population (there is an enormous number of baby boomers who are on their way to being the elderly if they aren't already). Strokes are very common, and I think it's great that the network didn't sweep Dick under the rug. I think the amount of involvement in the show is just about right.

Dan Coyle said...

Kim- thank you kindly- she bore a resemblance to Melissa George, that's where I got the Austrailian connection. In fact, I thought for a moment it was George, which I thought was strange since Turistas is already gone from theaters.

dez said...

I've never been a huge Dick Clark fan, but if he wants to keep doing the show, more power to him. If I get that uncomfortable watching him, I can always change the channel.

More importantly: Has David Mills been posting as UBM to your blog all this time? You buncha sneaks! :-)

Niffer said...

At first I was uncomfortable watching him. But I think some of my initial reaction was assuming the network had dragged him out... Then, I realized, that this was his choice, and bless him for it. And it was fun to see him rag on Seacrest a little. I hope he stays well enough to keep on doing the countdown for more years to come.

Anonymous said...

I was going to say that Dick should probably give it up as he clearly does not posess the ability to handle a speaking role on television any longer. Then another poster made the best point of all. Every minute Dick Clark is on the air is another minute we are spared Ryan Seacrest's drivel. Point taken, GO DICK!!