Thursday, December 30, 2004

AND THIS IS THE GREATEST AND MOST ASTOUNDING BLOG POST PRESENTLY BEING POSTED: You know, I've been wondering if the fine staff over at the New York Times Arts & Leisure section is beginning to lose it. Leaving aside references to airborne masculine anatomical features, the first real sign of losing it came when lead movie critic A.O. Scott wrote:
We are so hung up on blue states and red states that our only hope may lie in the primary color that has been left off the map. We need something -- or someone -- yellow, and also absorbent and porous enough to soak up the ill will and scrub away the lingering bad feelings. Now more than ever, the country needs SpongeBob SquarePants.
I wrote this one off to post-election angst along with (possibly) a heady dose of whatever drug makes people enjoy "SpongeBob" (I, for one, don't get it). However, the weirdness returns today, when Virginia Heffernan asks whether "Jack & Bobby"s Grace McAllister could cut it as a real college professor. The piece is good, but one note struck me as off--Heffernan writes:

Oh, why are television's humanities professors so banal? The late, lamented belle-lettrist Asher Fleming of "Gilmore Girls" is a possible exception, but only because he was sleeping with Paris Geller (played by Liza Weil), the greatest comic character currently on television.

Now, I love "Gilmore Girls" as much as any straight man does, but referring to (the admittedly quite amusing) Paris as "the greatest comic character currently on television" seems a stretch. How about any character with the last name "Bluth" or "Funke?" Or Dr. Perry Cox from "Scrubs?" Or even Lorelai Gilmore herself? Who's on your list for great comic characters currently on television?

(And as great as Liza Weil is as Paris, let's not forget that she can also be an excellent dramatic actress, as her single great scene with John Spencer on The West Wing demonstrates.)

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