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Jewish World Review Nov. 2, 2001 / 16 Mar-Cheshvan, 5762

Phil Perrier

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Consumer Reports

Return to narcissism with Emmys -- LOS ANGELES | The twice postponed Emmy Awards have been rescheduled for Sunday. Producers say this will be a more dignified show than those seen in previous years. And nothing says "dignity" like Jerry Springer.

This year's show will have a somber tone, we are told. As if the show isn't somber enough every year by the fourth hour. Last year by show's end the audience looked as though they had survived a hostage crisis.

But the Emmys should go on. The Emmys are as "returned to normal" as we get.

Shallow, vapid, shamelessly narcisstic. All the base values that we have abandoned since September, 11th are joyously uplifted by the Emmy Awards; a proceeding which tells us that despite rumblings from the likes of Colin Powell and Donald Rumsfeld, we should really be concerned with the comings and going of Lisa Kudrow. A nation that has been asking "I wonder if these sniffles are anthrax?" Can now return to asking meaningful questions, like "Do you think Geena Davis will wear underwear this year?"

In fairness, real concessions are being made this year to reduce the Emmy's usual freak show tone. Joan Rivers will not be doing her pre-show banter at the rope line.

Apparently, it was realized that the concepts of "dignity" and "Joan Rivers" could never be reconciled.

The show will be hosted by Ellen DeGeneres. And an appearance by Anne Heche is expected. Heche is not invited but she was overheard telling her Chihuahua that she planned to "get a few things off (her) chest," whether she is invited or not.

TV legend Walter Cronkite, a man who positively reeks dignity, will open the show with brief remarks. While the casts of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Charmed will argue over who exactly Cronkite is --- Wilford Brimley or the "Quaker Oats guy."

If the November, 4th Emmys are canceled, well, we Americans have dealt admirably with the first two scrappings, I think we'll maintain order if it happens again. In fact, if the Emmys never happened again it is very likely no one would notice. How fitting if they were canceled, like any other Danny or Daddio.

Not only will things be more serious this year but there will also be some new awards. The following is a smattering of the new awards and my picks for who will win them:

Best show for the criminally insane: Bob Patterson

Best show for middle-aged perverts: Dawson's Creek

Best performance by a guy on heroin: Robert Downey Jr. (Ally McBeal)

Best show for weepy overweight women: Touched by an Angel

Best show for people with an I.Q. below 70: The WWF Smackdown

Best show for people with an I.Q. below 50: The Man Show

Best show for people you want to slap: Friends

Best career slide back an actor: David Caruso (NYPD Blue/to film/to video/to cable)

Best career slide by an actress: Shelley Long (Cheers/to signing headshots at the Albuquerque Lifestock Expo)

Best show for bondage freaks: "The Weakest Link"

JWR contributor Phil Perrier is a Los Angeles-based writer and stand-up comic. Comment by clicking here.


10/19/01: White trash exchange program
10/01/01: A few shows that will not be on the fall lineup
09/25/01: What's important
09/20/01: A sleeping giant awakes

© 2001, Phil Perrier