All you scrooges still grumbling about the devolution of the American press into yellow journalism, take heart! You’re right! Today, on CNN’s American Morning, anchors Rob Marciano and Kiran Chetry decided to address the 800-pound gorilla in the room: pop culture. Turns out, this was a big week for pop culture! Brangelina baby pics, Paris getting all up in McCain’s grill, Morgan Freeman and his car-crashin’ hoes (seriously - there were gardening tools everywhere). What better way for a news network that prides itself on having the Best Political Team on Television (ever, possibly!) to address it than to use the time-honored tradition of cultural commentary known as VH1’s Best Week Ever.
No, this is not a joke. Read on.
So. At 8:26 this morning, when groggy, news-hungry Americans are just waking up with Folgers in their cups, giggling Rob and Kiran trot out BWE regular Chuck Nice for, as Chetry put it, “our own little American Morning Best Week Ever.” They suggest that Nice start with Paris, meaning, of course, Paris Hilton’s recent “celebrity ad.” Nice responds with “Who hasn’t started with Paris?” before adding an “Honestly, isn’t that how it works?” and scanning the studio, stand-up style. And then it got much, much better.
NICE: You should see John McCain in a Speedo.
MARCIANO: [Tense, wooden chuckle.]
NICE: You have not lived until you have seen a wrinkly white-haired dude in a Speedo.
And, later that American morning:
CHETRY: The craziest thing about this is how is it that Paris Hilton always is able to resurrect herself and inject herself into anything that’s actually happening?
NICE: I’ll tell you what it is. Paris Hilton is pop-culture herpes.
NICE: No matter what happens, she’s going to come back.
MARCIANO: [wheezing, wooden laugh]
NICE: Hey, the crew is laughing. The crew is laughing. I know I said “herpes” on a morning news show and people are like “What is he doing?” but they’re laughing.
MARCIANO: I think some of them are actually wincing.
We are, Rob, we are. Oh, and CNN did not return calls for comment.Julia Ioffe is a freelance writer based in New York City.