So, here he is with Melania Trump and how to "Just Be Best."
Though pretty much all of Randy Rainbow's song parodies have been treats, this one is especially a joy. It's not that the production is so special -- though it's awfully good -- but the editing is vibrant, the lyrics are point, often very clever and quite funny, and the song itself is just one that makes most people smile, I think. And in the end, he just has a great time here being withering -- not just with the song, but the interview beforehand.
So, here he is with Melania Trump and how to "Just Be Best."
This is an absolute must-listen, but I’m going to send you over to Mark Evanier’s website, since he posted the video there yesterday. First though, a bit of background here to put it all in perspective.
Though there's nothing Broadway about it, this is a song performed by Broadway star Kelli O’Hara, who has six Tony nominations for starring in such shows as South Pacific, Pajama Game and The Bridges of Madison County, as well as co-starring in The Light in the Piazza – and then winning for the recent revival of The King and I. She's also gotten an Emmy nomination, been in some films and even performed at the Metropolitan Opera.
I really like Kelli O’Hara a lot. Though I’ve never though comedy was her strength, or rough edges, but rather very structured and meticulous. Indeed, she has quipped about being the longest-running ingenue on Broadway. Those were simply the roles she got -- and to a certain degree still gets them. Some of the reason may be that she played them so well (note the Tony nominations). And also because that's simply how she always looked, like The Ingenue. Some may be because of personality -- I've heard tales of her non-diva kindnesses and thoughtfulness. But whatever the reasons, those in general have been her roles: sweet, low-key, fresh-faced, innocent.
This video shows the range of her skills otherwise. Including her slightly-less than G-rated side. She performed it at "From Broadway with Love: A Benefit Concert for Orlando" at the Disney Theatre in July of 2016.
She’s so tremendous doing this that it’s easy to think it was a specialty number written for her somewhat inspired by her life. I suspect she has such a fun time with it because parts do overlap with her life (though not from Georgia, she's from Oklahoma -- and, in fact, had the same music teacher there as Kristen Chenoweth), but as the storyline unravels it should be clear that it’s NOT autobiographical.
The hilarious words fly by, so if you want to follow-along while she sings you can find the lyrics here. But half the fun is watching her dive into it without a net, so it’s probably best to check the words after, if you miss anything.
Actually, not just the words, but the whole performance flies by. It starts at level 7 and goes up from there, for almost eight barreling minutes. And seems to be having the time of her life not just singing but performing the bejeepers out of it. It's a tour-de-force joy.
For the record, to give full credit, the song is written by her pianist, Dan Lipton. So, her life might somewhat have given him a prompting to twist things a bit and write it. Or not. I assume that’s him on the video, but don’t know.
Anyway, this is the link to the video on Mark's site. Know that when it starts to play, you can click "full-screen" icon at the bottom of the video.
As she says -- Hit it, boys...
Periodically I've posted various "Mean Tweet" segments from Jimmy Kimmel Live! when celebrities come in and read pretty awful things about themselves that people have written on Twitter. This is sort of that, but not precisely. It's Larry David reveling in the terrible things being said about him and cracking up continuously.
Actually, this will be Tweets of the Day, because it takes several of them to tell the story properly. But it's absolutely worth it. Stick around all the way through. But then, these are tweets, it shouldn't be much of a challenge reading them all.
The tale begins with a mother sending out the following tweet about her adored son.
As you might imagine, that lead to a spate of scathing replies on Twitter. Many were extremely funny, but rather than post a dozen, I've picked a couple that will stand in for them. This first is one of my favorites, for its loopiness.
But this other is my favorite, but for the pure cleverness -- and strangeness of it.
However, this is the best. Not a scathing response at all, because it's VERY different, as you'll see. I shall say more more other than it's 100% on the level, and there have been several interviews with him. He's never had a Twitter account before, but felt compelled to sign up. Adding to the fun, note the Twitter-handle he chose --
Too hilarious. He's said that he was flabbergasted by the tweet and response, and does not even remotely support "#HimToo" and isn't quite sure what drove his mother to post that, since she's very quiet, low key and has never done anything like it before. And he says that even she isn't quite sure why she did it. But there's no animosity over it in the slightest, and by this point he says that even his mother is able to laugh about it.
Fortunately, she didn't use her name in her original tweet, and her son intentionally kept her name private in his interviews. Happily, the family has a fairly common last name, so it can stay reasonably private.
John Oliver does a bit of a follow-up on the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh, mainly focused on the Republican response to it. And he does it wonderfully.
The other day, I had a clip of Peter Cook in Beyond the Fringe performing his character 'E.L. Wisty' who regularly philosophized on a park bench about his Great Thoughts on the world.. Later, when he and Dudley Moore teamed up for their series, Not Only, But Also, on the BBC in the mid-1960s, they created a couple of someone similar characters, at least in theory. That would be 'Pete & Dud', two lower-class cockneys who fancied themselves all-knowing about the ways of the world, and and analyzed all the details in various settings. 'Pete' tended to be more of a know-it-all, while 'Dud' a touch more insecure, trying to keep up. But together they were a wonderful pair.
It's been three years since I posted them waxing about doctors, which is far too long to long without jumping back to them. (Which you can see here.) So, let's correct that. Here they are breaking down the world of fine art. I get the sense that the two often ad-libbed a bit through these, Peter Cook going off on his own tangents a bit more often, and you can likely see that here where at one point Dudley Moore struggles to keep from cracking up.
I have to admit, I've the Supreme Court on my mind today -- though I suspect that's been fairly clear. But I also think that having a bit of comedy would be really a very good thing. Happily, I thought of a way to combine the two.
This is Peter Cook portraying his character the Misty Mr. Wisty, who sits on a park bench and ruminates on all the great matters of the world. He created the character of E.L. Wisty for the stage review Beyond the Fringe and expanded on the good fellow later on his TV series.
Here, he explains why he'd much rather have been a judge than a coal miner.
For reasons I don't understand, the film jumps in about the middle. That aside, this version is slightly different than the one I have on record from Beyond the Fringe, which he did about 20 years earlier. And bizarrely, the part that's different -- which comes along at about 2:30 -- is remarkably and eerily timely. I did not post it for that reason. I did it for the reason as stated above. I wanted a good laugh. Sometimes, though, kismet just works out that way. Which is the point of kismet.
If you'd like to hear the original version, that's a minute or so longer, here it is --
I think I'm at one of those points where I have to decompress and recharge a bit, so I turn the floor over to John Oliver and Last Week Tonight. He devotes his entire show to the Kavanaugh hearings, and it's serious, pointed, detailed, infuriating and often hilarious. While it's difficult to pick any particular sequence as "best," I will at least note around the 13-minute mark his discussion of Kavanaugh, his dad and calendars.
Though a half-hour, this flies by, and you may want it to go on longer.
I've always been a fan of both Jack Benny and Jimmy Durante -- not just because I love their work (which I do, but I'm sure my initial appreciation for Jack Benny comes from the joy I got watching my grandmother who adored him), but also because I love performers who are unique. There are a lot of great performers, and they stand out for their talent. But there are a rare few who stand out for who they are. You can get a "Bing Crosby type." Or a "Justin Timberlake type." But you can't really get a "Jimmy Durante type" or a "Jack Benny type." You get Jimmy Durante or Jack Benny, or you look for someone else entirely.
Well, we have them both here.
This comes from The Lennon Sisters Hour in 1970. It starts with them and Jack Benny, and then it shifts to Benny and Durante together. Better still, they perform each of their signature theme songs, "Inka Dinka Doo" and "Love in Bloom."
It's been a while since I've had a segment of Martin Short as Jiminy Glick. But I think some laughter would fit in very nicely today. So, here he is interviewing Tim Allen.
Robert J. Elisberg is a two-time recipient of the Lucille Ball Award for comedy screenwriting. He's written for film, TV, the stage, and two best-selling novels, is a regular columnist for the Writers Guild of America and was for the Huffington Post. Among his other writing, he has a long-time column on technology (which he sometimes understands), and co-wrote a book on world travel. As a lyricist, he is a member of ASCAP, and has contributed to numerous publications.
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