November 27, 2013

Who killed Alec Baldwin's TV show?

Alec offers some clues:
"People who I worked with that I cared about—these people were all very supportive of the show. Now there was somebody on the staff who I did not want to work with. There was somebody on the staff who I thought wasn't a good fit for me. And I wouldn't rule out if that person went to the Post and gave them that story."
The story that he called a paparazzo a "cocksucking faggot."

"These stories with the Post, the way they work, they have to have some kernel of truth. So if I complained, as I did, I said to them... I didn't ask for a humidifier, I asked for humidification. So we had a day where... my voice would crack, it was heavily air conditioned, I found it tough to talk. I did not demand someone put a humidifier in. And the woman using that dressing room, I was told she's allergic to some chemical, no one ever ever ever said to me that somebody had cancer, and I never said 'I don't give a fuck...'"
So, it wasn't just the use of the epithet on the street, it was inside stuff, staff versus star. The star felt entitled to use hairspray, and the staff member trumped him with her cancer. Her sensitivity, premised on cancer, is obviously — in the larger scheme of things — more important than his frivolous vanity over his hair, but in the production of a TV show, getting the on-camera talent to look right is actually more important than accommodating a particular employee's needs. If she can't work around hairspray, she shouldn't have a job in the room where the hair is being done.

Baldwin was hired because of his manly good looks, which includes his full head of hair, and there's pressure on him to live up to that image. He was also hired because he exudes passion, and that means he's not perfect at dealing with the pressure. He's got his sensitivities too, and they are intrinsic to the excitement that's supposed to make the show, a show centered on him. That's what MSNBC bought when they hired him.

Yes, kick him around for having "cocksucking faggot" in his head where it could pop out when he was trapped and fighting on the street, but don't fire him. We're left with the most boring and bland people blabbing on TV, including MSNBC's own little snake Martin Bashir.

49 comments:

Carnifex said...

What killed Baldwin's show is he went after one of the "protected" classes. A prime example of this is shown by Bashir still having a job. Bashir's comments were far worse, and broadcast by the station. But he said it about a "conservative" woman. So Bashir is excused.

Double standard we much?

Carnifex said...

What killed Baldwin's show is he went after one of the "protected" classes. A prime example of this is shown by Bashir still having a job. Bashir's comments were far worse, and broadcast by the station. But he said it about a "conservative" woman. So Bashir is excused.

Double standard we much?

JRoberts said...

Now we know the truth. Alec Baldwin is a VICTIM. It's not his fault. How can we expect him to bear the responsibility of his words and action when he's been victimized?

Sarah Palin or George W. Bush must be involved somehow...

YoungHegelian said...

MSNBC is owned by NBC, the same company that had Baldwin under contract for 7 years as a major character in its series 30 Rock. Seven years is a long time to observe an actor's character under pressure.

Somehow, the production team of 30 Rock pulled through not only Baldwin but a bunch of other divas too for seven long years. But the clowns at MSNBC couldn't even keep it together for two months?

Is Baldwin an asshole? Yes. But the on-air talent world is full of assholes, and it's the job of the production staff to deal with them. Yet another major fail for MSNBC.

jr565 said...

So what if he called the guy a cock sucking f*ggot. I thought being gay was ok, and I know that many gays are in fact cock suckers. Are gays so sensitive that merely calling them names becomes a career ender?

Not that I'm a fan of Baldwin, but please gays, get over yourselves.

Skeptical Voter said...

Actually Karma came into play. Alec Baldwin is an insufferable twit. This firing was an isolated act of good judgment on MSNBC's part.

Michael K said...

I can't stand him but I wouldn't watch MSNBC anyway, so I didn't do it.

Brando said...

The answer is obvious. Had Baldwin launched into racial epithets at a black (or Mexican, or Asian) papparazzo MSNBC would likely have canned him just as well. And the reason is, as always, ratings. They have an audience that skews liberal--and his show was a part of that--and the worry that his show's ratings would suffer due to boycotts or otherwise was too much a risk for them to take.

This is obviously different from Bashir's on-air comments, because how many MSNBC viewers would they really lose over his nasty remarks towards Sarah Palin? Hell, it'd probably get more liberals to tune in!

News is always a business first, regardless of what anyone's agenda is. If they can't make enough money from advertisers to stay on air, then everything else is irrelevant.

YoungHegelian said...

Personally, I was amazed that NBC didn't fire Baldwin after this gem.

Only liberals with well-polished bona fides could attempt something like that skit!

jr565 said...

"You sir a pussy sucking heterosexual Mother fucker!"

HOW DARE YOU! wait, that's kind of accurate.....
Carry on then.

Back in first grade I learned from both my teachers and parents that "sticks and stones may break your bones but words will never hurt you"
Not entirely accurate, since words CAN be devastating. But even so,people have to learn to deal with words and not make it into an inquisition.


Libertarian Advocate said...

Does anyone other than Baldwin really care why he lost his MSNBC gig? After all, he's just another loud-mouthed Assh_le.

jr565 said...

If he had just stuck to insults about republicans he'd be on air right now. Lesson for liberals. Get the gay stuff out of the vernacular, and put in stuff about tea partiers.
And you'll be golden.

Tom said...

So he's not only a bigot, he's also a pussy. Be a man... Name names or STFU, Alec

Michael said...

Blacks trump whites. Gays trump straights. liberal women trump white men but not black . Conservative women are trumped by all but white men. Black men trump black women. Lefties trump right wingers. It is pretty straight forward.

Ann Althouse said...

I really only know Baldwin from some of his acting. I saw a few episodes of "30 Rock" recently (after never having bothered to look at the show) and I saw him in "Blue Jasmine" (twice). I think he's great!

I really don't care much about what actors do off screen. I mean, if they commit crimes, I care about their getting punished the same as the non famous. But basically, they are emotional and often not that educated or smart (in the rational, logical way). They've got big incentives to manifest liberalism and love for oppressed groups, but I just assume that's shallow or even fake. What does it matter?

The man is an actor and a great one.

rcocean said...

A good actor, I wouldn't call him 'great'.

Anyway, TV chat has lost the genius of Al Baldwin, wit and political theorist. Sads. Had he called McCain a cocksucking faggot he'd still be on the air.

MSNBC considered Pee Wee Herman as his replacement but Pee Wee was too sophisticated for the MSNBC's audience. Instead, he will be running for a Minnesota Senate seat.

rcocean said...

And his obsession with Makeup won't help his desire to be an action hero.

William said...

Baldwin is to political commentary what Lindsay Lohan is to rehab. You know he's going to fail, but that's the whole point--watching him fail. I'm sure his show would have been a more interesting failure than that of Martin Bashir. (Although it should be noted that coprophiliacs are underrepresented in the tv line up, and Martin gives exposure to this deeply closeted sub group.).......I don't think Baldwin is a great actor, but he's been able to successfully integrate his irritable qualities into his screen persona. Think Charley Sheen and his decadence and Jane Fonda and her brittle neuroticism. I think the great actors--Meryl Streep, Olivier, even Brando--masked their own tics and grimaces in their roles.

cubanbob said...

Alec Baldwin is a good actor but one would think he would have by now learned by now when to STFU.

Bashir has no excuse, his rant was scripted.

Curious George said...

"cubanbob said...
Alec Baldwin is a good actor but one would think he would have by now learned by now when to STFU."

Why? Up until this firing there have never been any consequences.

Ann Althouse said...

Let's remember that Bashir was also a major catalyst in the destruction of Michael Jackson AND Princess Diana.

He really is a snake.

Give me a forthright expressive jackass over a snake anytime.

Curious George said...

What killed his show was weak ratings.

Michael said...

I would take the jackass over the snake as well. But the jackass also happens to be a bad bully who one day soon will have his lights put out. Inevitable.

Bashir has a protected name. He is from Pakistan and even though he is a Christian (which takes away points, of course) his "otherness" makes it difficult for the cocksucking network to shit in his mouth.

From Inwood said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
From Inwood said...

Prof A

Jasmine is what we used to refer to as a "poor man's" Streetcar Named Desire.

I agree that Baldwin was excellent in Jasmine

Co-incidentally, I think that Brando on this thread has nailed it. The MSNBC robotic, unthinking audience, even tho it would never say what Martin B did, feels that extremism in the defense of Dem/Libs or anyone in the PC Victim Class is no vice & moderation in the destruction of Republicans/Conservatives is no virtue. Especially when it comes to déclassé ones like Palin.

Beldar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Beldar said...

If he were given his just deserts, Alec Baldwin would be horsewhipped, tarred, and feathered — then shunned and ignored by every decent person, left to stew in his own vile oozings and paranoid hatreds.

Prof. Althouse, your argument would suggest that MSNBC should do a regular remote-link broadcast from Charles Manson's prison cell too.

Being nasty and bigoted is NOT a qualification for being an on-air personality.

Darrell said...

A conversation I had recently--

Just how many times did Brits crap in Martin Bashir's mouth when he was in the UK?

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


****


Not enough, clearly.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Darrell said...

Ann Coulter's take last week on Alex Baldwin. No. It's not what you think.

http://www.anncoulter.com/columns/2013-11-20.html#read_more

Sharc said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sharc said...

"Black men trump black women."

Not by a long shot. Although gay black men trump straight black women.

Clyde said...

1. The death of Baldwin's show was self-inflicted.

2. Hairspray lady probably talks about her rights under the Americans With Disabilities Act and as a cancer martyr. Ann notes that someone with that kind of sensitivity shouldn't work in a job styling hair, but that's just ableist talk! Society must accommodate itself to those with disabilities, no matter what. It's the law of the land!

Clyde said...

@ Skeptical Voter

Yup, even a blind squirrel sometimes finds a stopped clock that's right twice a day. Or something to that effect.

Crunchy Frog said...

Let's remember that Bashir was also a major catalyst in the destruction of Michael Jackson AND Princess Diana.

Michael Jackson was the person most responsible for the destruction of Michael Jackson.

Princess Diana was the 80s version of Kim Kardashian, minus the sex tape. Famous for being famous. Other than getting married to the (ostensibly) future King of England, she was a non-entity. Did she deserve the media hounding she got? No. But she didn't deserve the media platitudes she received either.

jr565 said...

Darrell wrote:
Ann Coulter's take last week on Alex Baldwin. No. It's not what you think.

http://www.anncoulter.com/columns/2013-11-20.html#read_more

Good for Coulter. I bet Alec won't appreciate it either.

Mary Beth said...

I liked him in "The Hunt for Red October". I don't think I've seen him in much since then.

The firing seems fishy, like all of these things are an excuse but not really the reason.

Smilin' Jack said...

Seriously none of you people have seen him in 'Glengarry Glen Ross'? One of the great performances of all time in one of the great movies of all time.

"Put. The coffee. Down."

BDNYC said...

So he's back to denying that he said "fag."

The Godfather said...

Alec Baldwin had a news show? Alec Baldwin the actor? Why?

Hammond X Gritzkofe said...

Who killed Alec Baldwin's TV show?

My guess'd be: Alec Baldwin.

Maybe somebody has seen the show and has a better answer.

damikesc said...

Wouldn't that basically nobody watched the show be the reason the show died?

I don't like that he lost the job over something he said --- but I'll be damned if I think conservatives should not force Progressives to live by their professed beliefs.

Broomhandle said...

Straight black men get shit on by everybody. Seriously, you wouldn't have to be the least bit paranoid to think that it is American society's intent to destroy them utterly. Bark and other useful tokens not withstanding.

Smilin' Jack said...

The story that he called a paparazzo a "cocksucking faggot."

Well, of course he was being pleonastic, but that hardly seems like grounds for termination.

Crunchy Frog said...

I thought he was just being redundant.

Crazy Jane said...

He's fun to watch on the screen, usually for playing 200 pounds of galloping id, i.e., himself. The funnest comment I read suggested this event may threaten his nascent political career.

JoyD said...

Firing him was ridiculous. If enough people were affronted enough to boycott the show, then it would die a natural death. His private life is, or should be, private. I don't need the network to protect my delicate sensibilities. I happen to think he's a comic genius, I don't care if he's not a nice person. I want to watch him, not know him.

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jr565 said...

Imagine if Glengarry Glenn Ross were done with the modern political correctness in place.
Alec Baldwin comes on the scene:
"Listen up you cock sucking faggots...."
Kevin Spacey: "ummm.... You can't say that. Jack Lemmon and Alan Arkin are both very sensitive. Please step into the office for a sec."
Kevin and Alec have a discussion in the office, then Alec walks out and exits stage left with a sheepish look on his face.
Jack Lemmon: "who was that guy?"
Alan Arkin: "I don't know. But he seemed really mean"
Kevin Spacey walks out of the office:
Spacey: "Sorry about that display. Alec is really sorry he used those words.He won't be coming back.Now, who wants ice cream?"
Alan, Jack and Ed: "YAAAY!"
Roll Credits.

PJ said...

Perhaps MSNBC learned from previous experience to recognize the signs of a blossoming dysfunctional relationship and took an early opportunity to avoid the predictable cycle of abuse. Good for them.