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No one requested Carson Daly, or that camel

January 5, 2014
By WES BURNS - Copy Editor (wburns@timesrepublican.com) , Times-Republican

New year, new stories, new cold.

Yeah, while you were off at some "party" or "event" I kicked off New Year's 2014 in style.

Cocktails? Well, I do enjoy an even 15 ml of cough syrup twice daily, thank you very much. What's that in the corner? Is it a high powered humidifier? That's right ... jealous yet? You will be after you see my dizzying array of hand sanitizers, beautifully backlit by cell phone, blinking out its half-hourly reminder that it is indeed quite cold outside.

Since I was to remain indoors to celebrate this newest of years I decided to eschew my normal viewing habits.

Astute readers will remember that in previous years I have watched CNN's comedy duo of Griffin and the Coop (Kathy Griffin and Anderson Cooper, respectively) attempt to navigate their way through bad puns, shotty production values, and a surprise appearance by MC Hammer.

Oh, those carefree days of 2012.

CNN fell from my good graces this year as their undulating melange of graphics, polls, infotainment and Kathy Griffin's mug put undue stress upon my already weak constitution.

But I really wanted to see a giant network fail at the most simple of tasks (watching a clock) I went to the one place where failure is the only option: NBC.

Ah, NBC. Once proud purveyor of classic sitcoms like "The Cosby Show," "Seinfeld," and "The Office (before it got unwatchably bad in Season 6)" NBC has been reduced to sneaking their own in-no-way-deserving programming events into their "year in review."

That live version of "The Sound of Music?" How is that even comparable to the series finale of "Breaking Bad?" And yet there it sits, right before the tragic tale of Walter White, and right before "Sharknado."

Would this be one of those years where NBC decided to attempt a little prestige, to harken back to the days when it was more than the laughing stock of the Big 4 networks, themselves the laughing stock of anyone with an internet connection?

Let me paint you a picture: The first thing I saw when I switched to NBC is perennial never-been Anthony Anderson, wading into a crowd of cordoned off revelers repleat with corporate logo emblazoned Dr. Suess hats, attempting to get two women to kiss.

They said it was their resolution. Don't those come in the new year?

So far we're right at the level I anticipated (desperate, but in a sterile way) and if this production had stayed at that level I would have been content.

But then the camera crew cut back to Carson "Don't Call Me Total Request Live" Daly, and the show took a turn for the even worse.

In an attempt to make himself appear funnier by association Mr. Daly had enlisted the considerable comedic talents of one Jane Lynch. Beside Lynch was relative newcomer Natasha Leggero, who's inclusion is the end result of telling a team of Universal/Viacom execs that you want someone "edgy."

Upon returning from Anthony Anderson's sapphic tour of the great unwashed masses Carson Daly felt it necessary to slap Lynch on the arm, in an method of bonding exactly as effective and honest as an abstinence Mad-Lib at church camp.

Leggero's claim to fame for the evening would be making an off handed joke at the expense of Pearl Harbor veterans.

Of course the real crime here is that Carson Daly thought a great way to spend the new year's eve would be discussing potentially offensive tweets with a roundtable of comedians, then feigning offense.

So we've got offensive jokes, facile offense at said jokes, and women making out; almost all the elements required to make a truly catastrophic network television event, but it wouldn't be complete without a little crass commercialization.

Enter: That stupid camel.

You know the one I'm talking about. That idiotic camel from some insurance company's commercial; all insurance companies are the same company anyways but I think this one belongs to Geico. It's that moronic camel that says "hump day" to the unending joy of simple minded folk with nothing better to do than repeat that phrase ad nauseum until I'm forced to turn the volume up on my already blaring headphones.

What do you watch a New Year's Eve special for, other than the schadenfreude? To see the ball drop, then watch the confetti. That's it! Well, guess what happened a scant 20 seconds after finally, FINALLY seeing the ball drop?

"Hey, this is Carson Daly, and we're going to go live to the Geico Camel for this thoughts on the New Year!"

What then transpired was a bunch of pictures of a camel with a hat on, making the same "hump day" joke over and over until you wish they would bring back Joe Camel just long enough to kick this guy off the airwaves.

I never make resolutions (ever since I failed to fulfill my resolution for 2013 to become a trained falconer) but how about we, the collective power of my readership, agree to the following for 2014:

1: No laughing at that stupid camel.

2: No watching Carson Daly, even to revel in his terribleness, lest those transgressive views be counted as approving fans.

3: That's it. Just get rid of the camel and the Carson and I think this is going to be a pretty good year.

 
 

 

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