Eat The Press

MCRove.JPG

ap via latimes.com (video still)

From the sounds of it, last night's Radio and Television Correspondents' Association dinner was somewhat...surreal — particularly for those who perceive the relationship between the administration and the press to be prickly and adversarial. Instead, it was a chummy talent show featuring a mixture of media and political bigwigs joining together to rap, dance, and burp the Battle Hymn of the Republic. Oh, and to laugh at President Bush's punchlines about the whole U.S. Attorney fiasco. Hilarious!

After last year's White House Correspondent's dinner, made somewhat adversarial by Stephen Colbert's close-to-home speech, there were some calls for the event to be abolished based on a sense that such chummy relations were at cross-purposes with the press' role of holding its government at arm's length (we're going to use the Katie Couric formulation of "some" here). Suffice it to say that last night's event was not a step in that direction.

The LAT's Matea Gold called it "rollicking" and described the following events:

  • It kicked off with a JibJab cartoon called "What We Call The News," which we can't help but think ought to have made a few people a little uncomfortable (it's a pretty depressing take dressed up as fun, and the ending in particular has a dash of surprising bleakness). But it's also fun to see everybody looking funny!

    what we call the news andy coop geraldo.jpg

  • Bush spoke, cracking a little wise: ""A year ago, my approval rating was in the 30s. My nominee for the Supreme Court had just withdrawn, and my vice president had shot someone." (beat) "Ah, those were the good ol' days." Ha, ha — oh, wait, that means things are worse now. Ha?

  • Bush also mentioned the U.S. Attorneys scandal TK. "I have to admit, we really blew the way we let those attorneys go. You know you've botched it when people sympathize with lawyers." Well, yes, that's one way to know when you've botched it. There are others.

  • Next up was an improv routine with "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" comics Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood (Mochrie, like WH Correspondents Association performer Rich Little, is Canadian. Yes, that is relevant). The duo apparently called people onstage to be rolled into various skits and acts, including Brian Williams and NBC News senior VP Cheryl Gould, who proceeded to burp "The Battle Hymn of the Republic." Yes. Burp. ETP is a fan of the sunkissed anchor, verily, but might there be such a thing as too cool? Like the Amy Poehler mom in Mean Girls? Either way, let no one EVER give Katie Couric crap for gravitas EVER again.

  • Finally, the part that gives us the willies: They had Karl Rove come up (who, by the way, is looking very trim. Wow). Then they had him rap. As "MC Rove." This is on video, see it for yourself here. NBC's David Gregory, provided back-up dance moves, as he does. And as Sherwood rapped, Rove "kicked it" and delivered his line with gusto: "I'm MC Rove!" It was fun and funny and cute and human and comical and all that but it was ROVE. And stuff is going on with Rove right now. You know, stuff about testifying and subpoenas and transcripts and non-oaths — shouldn't someone be weirded out by that? Shouldn't dancing with him feel inappropriate? Or is that just What We Call The News?

Correspondents' dinner features fun, frolicking, and MC Rove [LAT]
Send "What We Call The News" To Friends [JibJab]
Funny Animations at JibJab [JibJab]

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