Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Winner of the Writer's Strike: Jimmy Kimmel?

Jimmy Kimmel, previously found to be mildly irritating by myself and everyone I know, made a music video so fucking hilarious that the one person at the NY Times who's in charge of keeping his finger on the Inter of the Web sat up and took notice.

It features pretty much the only thing that could top oft-genius girlfriend Sarah Silverman's video "I'm Fucking Matt Damon"—Brad Pitt as a FedEx guy. Not to mention a bevy of other celebs that would cause my father to demand, "is that what's-his-name? from that movie? with the guy?"

In case you've been living under layers of Bea Arthur's shedding skin (or your overlords block video, like mine) and haven't seen the "viral videos" (as the myspacers are calling them), don't read the Times' awful descriptions of them. Just watch 'em:

(jimmy and sarah actually have great chemistry, I think, almost making up for him hosting "the man show")

("every once in a while hollywood rallies itself for a worthy cause," kimmel told the Times.)

The interesting thing isn't so much that this is Ben's best performance since Bounce, but the blatant use of "fucking," even though it's bleeped out. (Or as the Times puts it, "One vulgar word describing the coital relations between, on the one bed, Ms. Silverman and Mr. Damon, and on the other, Mr. Kimmel and Mr. Affleck, was repeatedly bleeped out for the broadcast of each video.") After the videos got more than three million hits combined on youtube, abc.com put Kimmel's (still censored) on their homepage, which loads the video immediately when you hit the site.

Did Jimmy Kimmel and Sarah Silverman produce something so funny that they proved that the power of the internet can topple networks' concern over the wrath of right-wingers? Well, not so fast: When the Times questioned ABC about it, they cited NBC.com's UNcensored "Dick in a Box" precedent. And though very careful about their family-friendly image, parent company Disney has long stood up to right-wingers on issues like gay rights.

Of course, maybe the real issue is, why do we censor shows at all? With the V-chip, there's no reason parents can't block shows with profanity (and I bet those cable boxes they're going to force everyone to get will have V-chips). Then, of course, Jimmy would have to cancel one of his best bits: "Unneccesary Censorship."

(RIP Mister Rogers)

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