Tuesday, January 8

the writer's strike and late night Comedy Central - plus, No Reservations: Singapore

the final two late night shows returned tonight - The Daily Show and The Colbert Report - both sans writers. how did they do?

Jon Stewart on The Daily Show "winged it" a little more than Colbert did (or he gave the impression that he was winging it a bit more at least, maybe to subtly show that they need writers - like Conan), but he was still good. they both were in their own ways.

both he and Colbert covered a little bit of politics but then devoted most their time to the writer's strike, doing rather funny bits in regards to the whole situation. then, Jon's guest for the night was an expert on strikes, and Colbert's guest was an expert on unions. it was actually pretty bold, and i'm surprised Comedy Central let them get away with all of it.

i learned that the WGA is granting more and more smaller companies leave from the strike (like Letterman's company, which i talked about last week) and that hopefully that will light fires under the larger companies to the point where they say "look, we need to get our writer's back - they've got theirs back!" interesting tactic.

i also learned that now that talks have broken down (they did before the holidays), it will take a LONG time before they talk again, because whichever side approaches the other first will look like the "weaker" side, as if they caved to the pressure. so expect the strike to go on for a few more months (i was predicting it would be over in April, but we'll see).

i've said it over and over again - this whole thing simply fascinates me. i'm going to try and tune in to a couple more episodes of The Daily Show and The Colbert Report this week to see how things are going, but we'll see how long i can keep it up - i've already missed 2 nights of Conan and Leno (last Friday and then tonight).

- kawitchate

PS: the new season of Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations started tonight on the Travel Channel with an episode on Singapore. i had a particular interest in it because some video game companies look to Singapore for outsourcing. heck, George Lucas set up a branch of his company there to work on animation and video games!

there was very little i knew about Singapore going in: that it's hot and humid there, it has very strict laws that keep crime down to a minimum, and that they cane people there in extreme cases. what i DIDN'T know is what a cultural melting pot it is! one of the people on the show said that you should head there to get a crash course in Asia 101. there's Indian, Chinese, and Malaysian - plus it's being Westernized, so a lot of people speak English there. anyway, where cultures meet, so do their foods. and wow did the food look good. yum.

i may have to add Singapore to my list of places to see. for now, it's still way down on the list - somewhere below Korea and England.

5 comments:

djwormparts said...

Hey homey, Look, I can sign in from my email or my blog - that's right, djwormparts.livejournal.com in the hizz ouse! Hope entertaining is going well, I know that can be hit or miss. I can't check out some of your links with my pitiful dial up, but it is good to hera about how the shows are developing. They have the laywer for the Guild on NPR today, and he was tyalking about how since Stewart himself is a member, he must write all his own jokes or have "spontaneous" jokes to avoid getting nailed by them. basically stand up or monologue stuff souinds ok, but not 15 min skit on Romney. Intersting territory!

B

Jessica said...

okay... between that other post and this one, i thinks you need to be my fantasy travel partner from now on. did i/andy ever tell you i tried to convince him we should go teach english in korea for a year? yeah, he didn't go for it. and you know how i loves me the brit-land...

kawitchate said...

@djwormparts

thanks for the info on the writer's strike! yeah i was wondering how they were able to write jokes if they (Stewart and i'm assuming Colbert) are part of the WGA - same with Leno and Conan. i agree, interesting stuff.

sorry you can't check out some of the links. time to get with the now and get yourself some cable or DSL! how else will you keep up with the funny?

and thanks for the link to your blog. it will be read regularly.

@jessica

i did not know you tried to convince andy to teach english in korea. not surprised he didn't go for it, it's a life-changing thing, kinda scary. but still, good on ya for trying.

yup, that was one of my plans before going to game design school after college. teach english to the asian folk. who knows, still might do it one day. then i'll get all the japanese (or korean) girlies all hot for teacher and i'll have to fend them off with a stick.

ah, a man can dream can't he?

-k

djwormparts said...

(connected to odd schemes to teach and use it for personal advantage)

With all my teaching desires I applied for Teach for America, a branch of Americorp, a branch of The Peace Corp that helps inside our country. They rejected me for being too much of communist. No joke.
In the day long vetting and interview process, while answering questions on how I would relate and teach, I answered a question (this is at a roundtable with 7 other applicants and 2 interviewers (also interestingly, this was in the Arthur Anderson Building on the 27th floor in Chicago. They would go bankrupt after Enron))

That's right I answered a question of "Why do some children fail at school?" with -
"Well, I feel that school is an assimilative structure, imparting values and beliefs on students..."
I then explained how the beliefs of school were a bad match for some who sought sucess in music, sports, or mechanical trades. Why learn Shakespeare? they'd ask. I felt I had an answer on how to reach them.

Instead, no job for me!
So getting to Asia might be easier, but just think of all the cultural barriers

kawitchate said...

@dj

wow, what a story! it's like they didn't want to hear the truth so you didn't get the job. wow.

i've heard it's fairly simple to teach english in asia, but there's always going to be the bureaucratic bullshit that goes along with teaching and school systems. that's a given WHEREVER you go.

speaking of schooling, my coworker (on the production side of things) saw 2 education news stories cross her news wire having to do with Milwaukee this week. the first:

"Milwaukee's high suspension rates may be hampering student learning, said superintendent William Andrekopoulos, who is calling for change in the way schools deal with disruptive students and how students are encouraged to engage with their classwork. Around 50% of all ninth-graders in Milwaukee Public Schools are suspended at least once a year, with many of those students incurring multiple suspensions, according to recently released data."

and the second:

"Cleveland, New Orleans, Detroit, Fresno, Calif., St. Louis and Milwaukee have the largest proportion of low-income students in the United States, according to newly released U.S. Census data gathered in 2005. "I literally go into classrooms and say ... 'I'm begging you to stay in school and work hard,'" said Tom Barrett, Milwaukee's mayor. "We know that's the long-term solution."

wow. simply, wow.

-k