Monday, August 21, 2006

William Shatner Comedy Central Roast

My wife and I came in about 30 minutes late on this show tonight. I am disappointed, but more than that, dumbfounded and angry.

I remember well the Dean Martin Roasts of the 1970s. Some here probably thought them unfunny, and I know they were staged and phony, but I laughed at them. I realize this is no longer that decade. Things have gotten raunchier in public and celebrities do much less than they used to do to maintain somewhat of a dignified image.

This was supposed to be a roast of Shatner. What I saw and heard were a succession of unfunny comedians making explicit jokes about anal sex, fellatio, and odorous vaginas. I mean, these people were really unfunny.

We all heard about George Takei's coming out a year or so ago. Well, a number of us Trekkies knew this 30 years ago but no matter. He didn't discuss it and neither did we.

What I saw Takei do was unravel any modicum of dignity he had left, and giggle like a 13-year old boy seeing his first porno film. After naming all the women on the stage (including poor old Betty White, Farrah Fawcett and Nichelle Nichols), the wittiest remark he could make was, "It sure smells like @#%$ in here." Takei went on to compare Shatner's wig to Fawcett's pubic hair. I mean it...that's the level of "humor" in this show. He alluded, well, more than alluded to performing fellatio and laughed heartily as others referred to his being on the receiving end of anal intercourse.

This is how to end a 40-year legacy? Their careers are over, or near over, and this is how they want to be remembered?

I know that behind closed doors at the Friar's Club, things were blue. I don't doubt that Bob Hope, George Burns, and others used this kind of language. But to a national audience?

I'm 45, and I know my tastes have changed. But this as good as they can do?

Sad and embarrassing.

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