Thursday, June 28, 2007

Lights, Camera, Action

Bill Richardson (and the other seven Dems) will be going live on PBS in about five hours. The format appears to be more "forum" than "debate" but the difference is basically negligible when you have eight presidential candidates on the same stage at the same time.

Tavis Smiley will moderate while a panel of three journalists will pepper the candidates with questions about health care, education, criminal justice, immigration, environmental issues, the "digital divide," economic development and whether they'd rather be stranded on an island with Ginger or Mary Ann (a pre-forum poll showed a split among the candidates with three Gingers, three Mary Anns and, disturbingly, two Skippers).

But the forum will have plenty of competition for its primetime (7 pm start in NM) television run. And some of the television shows airing at the same time also have odd correlations to the presidential campaign. If only they ran simultaneously...

"The NBA Draft (ESPN)": With the 23rd selection in the first round, the New York Knicks select...Joe Biden, a 65-year-old shooting guard (and senior US Senator) from Delaware. He's a streaky shooter with little jumping ability and a bum knee, but he talks a good game. Subsequently, the Richardson campaign issues a press release asserting that the governor was drafted by the Philadelphia 76ers with the 12th pick.

"Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?" (Fox): In the case of most presidential candidates, probably. But the jury's still out on Sam Brownback and Tom Tancredo.

"Ugly Betty" (ABC): Dennis Kucinich and most of the Republican field release a knowing sigh.

"My Name is Earl" (NBC): Mike Gravel forgets his name. Again. And forgets to wear pants. Again.

"World's Craziest Police Chases" (Court TV): An SUV carrying Bill Richardson (and driven by a New Mexico state trooper) attempts to elude a Bernalillo County Sheriff trying to pull the governor's caravan over for speeding.

"Best Places to Find Cash and Treasures" (Travel Channel): Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama visit a Democratic Party banquet in Beverly Hills.

"America's Funniest Home Videos" (Nickelodeon): Assorted YouTube clips of Gravel and Dennis Kucinich as well as Bill Richardson campaign ads and the governor's appearance on Meet the Press.

"Extreme Makeover" (Style): Bill Richardson sports a Moo Moo, John Edwards dons a dashiki and Rudy Guiliani tries a houndstooth derby on for size.

"The Sixth Sense" (TNT): Tavis Smiley sees dead people. Then realizes it's just Gravel taking a nap while Chris Dodd talks about his universal health care plan.

"Deadliest Catch" (Discovery): Biden candidly discusses the burning sensation he experienced after a particulary rowdy Theta Chi party at the University of Delaware in the spring of 1963.

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