Mike Huckabee joined Jay Leno tonight as his first guest back since the WGA went on strike. The two spoke about the Huck's sudden success, his past as a Baptist minister (which afforded Huckabee the chance to see "every single social pathology out there," which is surely the strangest summation of an ecclesiastical career I've ever heard), the candidate's guitar hero background (shades of Bryan Adams, Huck said he played his first guitar "till his fingers bled") and growing up in the same town as Bill Clinton.
Toward the end of the first part of the interview, though, you got to see the wisdom of having Huckabee as a guest during this bleak, writerless period of the Tonight Show - it allowed Leno a chance to bring up a time where Huckabee was the fodder for humor. See, the first time Leno encountered Huckabee, he was living in a "triple-wide" trailer whilst the governor's mansion was undergoing renovations. "We had a million jokes about it...you supported the monologue for weeks!" laughed Leno.
He then showed an old clip, in which a pre-fitness-inclined Huckabee told Jay that the trailer had enough room for the host "and [his] chin," to which Leno replied, "People who live in glass houses..." Ah, but that was so long ago--way before the Colbert Report appearances and the smirking, meta commercials with Chunk Norris that marked Huckabee as the candidate who'd combine the ironic humor of McSweeney's with the bleak social conservatism of Jonathan Edwards (not to be confused with the other John Edwards).
Huckabee and Leno finished off the interview by talking about the candidate's renewed focus on physical fitness, and his renewed focus on hating Mitt Romney. According to Huckabee, Romney has spent "eight or nine million dollars" in Iowa, which really makes this whole "Iowa caucus" scheme seem like the greatest scam since Ocean's Eleven. Seriously. It's time that we, as a nation, stopped to consider the possibility that we are getting played. Then the audience cheered for John McCain and the dismantling of the IRS, and Huckabee endorsed Barack Obama as the guy he would want to lose to if he wasn't going to lose the nomination itself.
No mention of those striking writers, by the way. You know...the ones Huckabee says he supports "unequivocally" and "absolutely?" Whose picket line Huckabee crossed to join Jay on the air tonight? Those writers didn't merit a mention from the candidate. Huckabee did pick up his bass guitar to join Kevin Eubanks and the band on a fierce rendition of the Pixies' "Debaser."
Ha! Just kidding! They didn't play the Pixies! It sure felt debased though!
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