Dennis Miller Switches Teams
June 30, 2003 1:49 PM   Subscribe

Dennis Miller Switches Teams It seems that Miller is stuping for Dubya now.
posted by turbanhead (68 comments total)
 
"stumping", I meant stumping...
posted by turbanhead at 1:51 PM on June 30, 2003


Dare I say that for me Miller is a very very funny guy who is full of it? On TV he made the claim that he "switched" sides when he saw how Rudy handleed the 9/11 thing and mae NY a great place in which to live...but I have always watched his shows and saw that he had been conservative from the get go. Now nothing wrong with that at all, but to suggest a "change" is sheer nonsense.
posted by Postroad at 1:52 PM on June 30, 2003


Wow, it's like Fark.com, except 24 hours later.
posted by UrbanFigaro at 1:54 PM on June 30, 2003


"stumping", I meant stumping...

Nah, I'd say you had it right the first time.
posted by adameft at 1:55 PM on June 30, 2003


I wish he was still on Monday Night Football.
posted by Witty at 2:00 PM on June 30, 2003


The FPP threw me as well. Miller has been the foul-mouthed voice of the right since MNF canned him a few years back. Like Postroad puts it, I'm not sure that this is a chagne. Miller has been doing the easy answers to difficult questions college boy wise-ass schtick for quite a number of years now.
posted by psmealey at 2:00 PM on June 30, 2003


i read it as schtupping.
posted by quonsar at 2:02 PM on June 30, 2003


From Dennis Miller: "I’ll be honest, I like my presidents to be a little dim. The clever ones get bored and try to tamper with my life. Give me a mildly clueless figurehead who will leave me alone."

He has, in the past, railed against the war on drugs, big government, and the Christian Right's attempts to legislate morality.

So, while I wouldn't call him a liberal, backing Bush seems a bit strange. Maybe the "dim" shtick was quite serious.
posted by trharlan at 2:02 PM on June 30, 2003


Miller hasn't been funny since he was the host of Punchline. All downhill from there.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 2:05 PM on June 30, 2003


Dennis Miller has become a massive tool.
posted by Bonzai at 2:05 PM on June 30, 2003


"Gol-darn it, Mr. Miller...you use your tongue purtier than a twenty-dollar whore!"
-- (Not) Slim Pickens
posted by LinusMines at 2:07 PM on June 30, 2003


Wow, it's like Fark.com, except 24 hours later.

Even worse(pointing at the news not the messenger), my mom, who I'll point out does little surfing on the net sent me an e-mail on Sunday, "TRYING TO HELP" By Dennis Miller.
posted by thomcatspike at 2:07 PM on June 30, 2003


I'm sorry to have to (half) agree with Postroad, Miller never sounded very progressive to me either (I beg to differ -- I never thought he was particularly funny)

re his performance in the yahoo story:
Miller's Byrd joke is not funny, but I've always failed to see why the KKK thing should never be mentioned in public -- it's not a social faux pas, the man used to be a klukker and even if he changed his mind and now votes in favor of civil rights, it's not only "a huge albatross" around his neck as the Senator said a few years ago, it's something he should be held accountable for. it's not that he got drunk one night and got a lewd tattoo on his chest, for chrissakes, it's the fucking Klan. Chappaquiddick is fair game and Byrd's past is not?

the Dean "Chamberlain" slur on the other hand is just that, a talk-radioish slur, and an unfunny one too -- there should be a Godwin for the Chamberlain thing as well.
I don't know, but I doubt that Chris Rock would have done a "Candidate Dubya wears a swastika tattoo" routine in front of Clinton. Miller really disappointed me with that one

but, anyway, to each his own -- Republican humor is generally involuntary, so what can you do
posted by matteo at 2:08 PM on June 30, 2003


For a minute, I thought he might be celebrating the recent SCOTUS decision....
posted by namespan at 2:13 PM on June 30, 2003


Guess Dennis needed a new gig when the M&M contract dried up, eh? Talk about a career going from 0 to nowhere.
posted by solistrato at 2:13 PM on June 30, 2003


OT: Everytime I see "SCOTUS" my mind automatically fills in the "r" and the "m."
posted by elwoodwiles at 2:21 PM on June 30, 2003


Dennis Miller Switches Teams

When I read that I thought he had become progressive and funny. Sadly, neither.
posted by soyjoy at 2:28 PM on June 30, 2003


Dennis Miller is gay now?
posted by xmutex at 2:30 PM on June 30, 2003


So how does the US know Iraq has incredible weapons of mass destruction? "We looked at the receipt."

"A war is when two armies are fighting."

"The only place the nicotine patch works is over the mouth".


"They said the Iraqis had the fourth largest army in the world. Well, the Hare Krishnas are the fifth largest and they've already got our airports."

"If the FBI's motivating factor for busting down the Koresh compound was child abuse, how come we never see Bradley tanks smashing into Catholic churches?"

"If you're so pro-life, do me a favor: don't block arms and block medical clinics. If you're so pro-life, lock arms and block cemeteries."


Bill Hicks, 1961-1994
posted by matteo at 2:31 PM on June 30, 2003


Well, from reading the above posts, I gueas it's official: Can't be smart/funny and have the wrong politics at the same time.

Too bad.

I have a fairly conservative friend who despised Miller simply becuase he viewed him as Yet Another Hollywood Liberal. I tried to tell my friend that, while I didn't often agree with Miller's politics, at least he was smart (or clever) and could provoke people into (maybe) thinking.

Sadly, the idea that "people on the Wrong Side are to be automatically rejected as witless losers" knows no political boundries.

Oh, and elwoodwiles: Me too; my mind fills in the missing letters as well. Not sure what that means.
posted by Ayn Marx at 2:33 PM on June 30, 2003


It's too bad Bill Hicks had to, you know, smoke a lot and die, cause he was funny.
posted by xmutex at 2:37 PM on June 30, 2003


I think this is just Dennis Miller trying to find a new platform to peddle his jokes from. He was outdid by all the newer, more long form comics like Chris Rock, George Carlin, Robin Williams, Ellen Degeneres, Jerry Seinfeld, and David Cross (who actually tell jokes) and he's not cool enough (because of his "Oh my God it's terrifying" movie career) to be like Bernie Mac, Bill, or any other of the myriad classy punners. So what do you do when the audience turns on you? You replace "audience" with "Liberal intelligentsia" and turn on the audience. Anyway, recently, listening to him is like what I imagine a really drunk, unsexed, political science thesaurus would sound like at a dictionary party.
posted by Henry Flower at 2:38 PM on June 30, 2003


Well, from reading the above posts, I gueas it's official: Can't be smart/funny and have the wrong politics at the same time.

No, it's just Dennis Miller who's a witless loser. There are lots of funny people of every political stripe. And then there are the smarmy jackasses, one of which would be DM.

I mean, did you ever sit through the labored, unfunny sessions of pain that were his Monday Night Football performances?
posted by COBRA! at 2:41 PM on June 30, 2003


Well, when word gets out that he supports Bush he'll never get a job in Hollywood again.
posted by Durwood at 2:42 PM on June 30, 2003


Bill Hicks was not only funny, he was dead-on accurate, something Dennis Miller has never been, even though he is often pretty funny.

Minor tangent: A while ago Dennis Miller "sparred" with Norman Mailer in an op-ed piece, responding to Mailer's criticisms of the war in Iraq. I can find Miller's (rather obtuse) piece, but I can't find the riposte Mailer made a few days later. Does anybody know if it made it on to the web?
posted by Hildago at 2:45 PM on June 30, 2003


I think there's something far basic at play. He's ratcheting up the rhetoric to capture the romantic interest of one Ann Coulter. Regardless of what happens there, I don't think the two of them together could work up enough human warmth to melt the smallest ice cube in the world.
posted by psmealey at 2:46 PM on June 30, 2003


We tivoed Miller's last stand-up comedy special on HBO awhile back, and were kind of surprised when we got around to watching it. In fact, we didn't finish watching it.

I guess it's another case where, unless you have definitive proof otherwise, you just assume that someone rational thinks exactly the way you do about most things, and then it comes as sort of a gasping shock when you suddenly realize they don't.
posted by crunchland at 2:46 PM on June 30, 2003


Crunchland: you mean you didn't immediately assume that Miller isn't rational?

Sadly, the idea that "people on the Wrong Side are to be automatically rejected as witless losers" knows no political boundries.

Ayn Marx: Do you mean to suggest there's another possibility?
posted by namespan at 2:58 PM on June 30, 2003


wow this is sad news. dennis miller is a stupid bozo. i wonder how much he's gettin paid.
posted by Peter H at 2:58 PM on June 30, 2003


A friend and I were just listening to an old Bill Hicks album the other day and *marveling* and how dead on accurate he was, more than 10 years ago. His comments ring even more true now, than during the first Iraq war.
posted by Espoo2 at 2:58 PM on June 30, 2003


I too was disappointed by Miller's last comedy special, but that's because he did most of it when he was a guest on The Daily Show. In five minutes.
posted by kindall at 3:01 PM on June 30, 2003


you mean you didn't immediately assume that Miller isn't rational?

Maybe the biggest mistake is assuming rational people think like me!
posted by crunchland at 3:04 PM on June 30, 2003


I don't actually see it as him changing sides so much as choosing a side. In the past, he pretty much poked at everyone's stupidity ... not just the left or the right. Of course, he used to also be funny, and now he's not. The change from pointing out the stupidity of all politicians to just the stupidity of one side wasn't a gradual change either ... it started immediately after 9/11.
posted by Orb at 3:30 PM on June 30, 2003


Blasting Byrd for being a clansman to a bunch of republicans right after Strom Thurmond dies is a little insensitive. The republican party is full of former (like the late thurmond) and current (like Lott) racists. Of course they don't like the idea of using someone's racist past against them.
posted by delmoi at 3:34 PM on June 30, 2003


Swarmy, washed-up 80's boring-ass loser. Don't think anyone under 35 will even know who he is, except for maybe a has-been Monday Night Football sportscaster wannabe. But this is rather brilliant, because his humour is intellectual to a certain degree, therefore it will be lost on most Dubya supporters.
posted by sixdifferentways at 3:35 PM on June 30, 2003


Everybody is conservative at heart.
ps: this is totally unrelated, but isn't MetaFilter a bit too "USA-oriented" today? This is the internet you know.
posted by 111 at 3:40 PM on June 30, 2003


On TV he made the claim that he "switched" sides when he saw how Rudy handleed the 9/11 thing and mae NY a great place in which to live...
WTF? What does appreciating the way the mayor of your town handled a situation have to do with supporting the current Administration? Just because they're both Republicans?
posted by sixdifferentways at 3:41 PM on June 30, 2003


I agree with Orb. I liked Miller when he bashed everyone who didn't agree with him, which included the idiot wings of both parties. But the sad fact is that he has been slipping since the mid-90s, trying to re-invent himself in many different ways and not finding much success.

This is the latest incarnation, and it will probably prove to be a good decision-- Bush is riding high and so are his supporters. Miller probably has more media attention and a higher profile now that he has since SNL. This is a smart move from a career standpoint in the short-term, but probably indicates that as an actual comedian (and not a partisan flack) his career is belly-up.
posted by cell divide at 3:44 PM on June 30, 2003


Actually George W. has done some decent stand-up himself.
posted by elwoodwiles at 3:45 PM on June 30, 2003


Dennis Miller is gay now?

All Republicans are gay.
posted by rhruska at 3:52 PM on June 30, 2003


Interesting that all the Bill Hicks stuff is coming out, because I get the feeling that Dennis Miller really wanted to be Bill Hicks. Unfortunately, being Bill Hicks involves a tremendous amount of personal risk - one doesn't say the things Hicks said and not pay for them. Miller, for whatever reason - either he didn't have it in him or he couldn't make the leap - didn't risk anything of himself in his comedy. If anything, his entire schtick was a paean to his own vast pop-culture knowledge, to him, him, him.

He's a yuppie and a shill. His personal politics, whatever they were, were always secondary to his own temple of self that he erected with balsa wood and scotch tape.

"You do a commercial, you're off the artistic roll call forever." - St. Bill
posted by solistrato at 3:53 PM on June 30, 2003


When I saw this I thought, "Well thats just weird." Miller, to me and I'm far from an expert, was a comedian of the Bill Hicks vein. I also believe he wrote the forward or provided a quote for one of Hick's books or videos.

I also remember when his book came out years ago, it was very critical of typical conservative thinking.

Let's face facts though, doing conservative comedy is difficult. I know he started as a carrot-top like prop comedian. Comedy is a business first and a ideological platform last. Perhaps his style of humor was always pandering to the audience and he's always been a conservative at heart.

Who knows. But it does seem cool in certain circles to be conservative or at least rail against what seems to be a very impotent democratic party.
posted by skallas at 4:02 PM on June 30, 2003


Well, when word gets out that he supports Bush he'll never get a job in Hollywood again.

It already got him a regular gig on Fox News. Expect the Fox sitcom and a couple Fox feature films to follow shortly.

The best analysis of his 'evolution' I've seen recently (except for one whopping lie in the second sentence of the first graf) is in National Review Online.
posted by wendell at 4:17 PM on June 30, 2003


Well, his problem is that he just isn't very funny anymore, but he still needs a job. He probably sees how much money all the dunderheaded mouth-breathing right-wing radio wackos make, and figures that audience will buy anything if it is spewed out with enough venom and spittle. Either that, or he's just trying to get in Ann Coulter's pants. Either way, I've lost nearly all respect for him over the past 2 or 3 years... and I did used to be a fan. Oh well.
posted by spilon at 4:18 PM on June 30, 2003


6diff ways: I noted that he claimed to switch sides because of Rudy's handlinbg of NY after 9/11 (no need to mention W's actions at same time), and no need to go on about Rudy and his wife and girlfriend and their cat fights in public and in all the papers. The point is that you don't support a Republican Congress and president and governors simply because one man, no longer in office, did a nice job...that was simply a BS statement. I thought Rudy was great at that time too and give him full credit for how he performed. Does that mean now I should support Bush and Rummy, and Ann Coulter and Cheney etc?
posted by Postroad at 4:25 PM on June 30, 2003


I think 'Middle America' won't take kindly to Dennis Miller's attempt at stumping for Bush. A lot of the people in the area between NY and LA, while generally conservative, still hold it against Dennis Miller for almost killing Monday Night Football. And remember, the order is 1) God 2) Jesus 3) Football.

Really, Middle America doesn't like him. Liberals loathe him. Homosexuals are revolted by him (but then I'm generalizing here and might be wrong). Who is he trying to get on board with his stumping, it seems to be a lot of preaching to the choir.
posted by benjh at 4:30 PM on June 30, 2003


Dennis Miller and Natalie Maines can say whatever the hell they like. Here is the part that bothers me. I hear that Miller has taken a gig as a news commentator. I realize it's Fox, but it seems beyond even their bounds to hire a partisan as a news person.
posted by chipr at 4:34 PM on June 30, 2003


"I’ll be honest, I like my presidents to be a little dim. The clever ones get bored and try to tamper with my life. Give me a mildly clueless figurehead who will leave me alone."

Wait...who's leaving whom alone and not tampering with whose life?
posted by rushmc at 7:28 PM on July 1, 2003


But this is rather brilliant, because his humour is intellectual to a certain degree, therefore it will be lost on most Dubya supporters.

So half the country is too stupid to understand Dennis Miller. But the other half, the gore half, are intelligent, just like you. And Miller is a loser because he supports Bush.

Such an open, compassionate left. You have the generalized view of close-minded right wing nut, just from the other side.

Beautiful in its humor.
posted by Dennis Murphy at 7:30 PM on July 1, 2003


I get the feeling that Dennis Miller really wanted to be Bill Hicks.

Actually, it was Denis Leary that really wanted to be Bill Hicks. Unfortunately, it looks like he ran out of new material right around the time that Hicks died. Coincidence?
posted by majcher at 7:49 PM on July 1, 2003


I realize it's Fox, but it seems beyond even their bounds to hire a partisan as a news person.

You're joking, right?
posted by soyjoy at 7:59 PM on July 1, 2003


It's too bad Bill Hicks had to, you know, smoke a lot and die, cause he was funny.

Last I heard, smoking couldn't cause pancreatic cancer. [googles] Oh, fuck. Fuck.

I miss Bill Hicks. A fuck of a lot.

Coincidence?

I think not. Meet me at the dock. Anyway. Dennis Miller: cunt.
posted by riviera at 7:59 PM on July 1, 2003


Anybody remember Miller's talk show? It was on for about a month or two in the early 90s. Ex-Police guitarist Andy Summers was the bandleader. After a few weeks they had clearly developed a withering hatred of each other - they were just glaring holes in each other during the 'bandleader banters with the host' schtick. Meanwhile the show was collapsing - Miller was so bad as a talk show host. Totally unable to feign any interest at all in another person for even 10 minutes.
posted by crunchburger at 8:19 PM on July 1, 2003


Yeah. I miss Bill too.

Dennis has been right wing for a while now. He also hasn't been funny in years. I don't think the two are intertwined, necessarily...he had some hysterical Clinton stuff during the first term of office. He was a pretty equal opportunity satirist.

But, somewhere along the way, Dennis just lost his edge, and he became a pale impersonation of angry young comic guy. Which, really only makes sense. He turns 50 this year. Hard to be alterna-angry-boy when you're old enough to be a grandpa. Lenny Bruce, he ain't. Bill Hicks...Dennis only wishes he was as politically astute as Bill was.

And now, may I present:

It's 4 a.m., and comedian Dennis Miller can't sleep. After a few fitful hours of tossing and turning, he sits upright in bed and switches on the lamp on the night table. There, standing in the room is -- Dennis Miller. But it's a younger, hipper Dennis, the Saturday Night Live Dennis, with the Steven Tyler hair and the twinkle in the eye. He is holding a large manila folder, stuffed with papers.
posted by dejah420 at 8:38 PM on July 1, 2003


If you want to see the double-whammy of Dennis Miller and Ann Coulter on the same tv show, check out Bill Maher's Real Time. Not having any recent exposure to Miller, but recalling he was supposed to be quite funny, I was disappointed when I saw him on Real Time. He seemed very bitter! Bill Maher is a heck of a lot funnier and, interestingly, as he states: "I the first guy to be Dixie-Chicked."
posted by Onanist at 9:41 PM on July 1, 2003



It's too bad Bill Hicks had to, you know, smoke a lot and die, cause he was funny.

Last I heard, smoking couldn't cause pancreatic cancer. [googles] Oh, fuck. Fuck.



I was waiting for someone to point out that Hicks didn't die from smoking. Thank you, sort of.
posted by drezdn at 10:35 PM on July 1, 2003


what dejah said. And read that link - it's great. Dejah, I was right in the middle of posting that link when MeFi crashed, so of course I thought it was my fault. If there is any possible guilt to be wreaked out of a situation, I will find it and assume it.

It rather goes against the natural order for a comedian to be a political shill...seems to me that their natural role is to be a social critic not a lackey. Too bad that Dennis has chosen to spend the twilight of his career in the undignified posture of ass kissing as he plays court jester.

A prior Dennis Miller, from dejah's article:
"George W. Bush surrounds himself with smart people the way a hole surrounds itself with a donut."
posted by madamjujujive at 12:05 AM on July 2, 2003


And, then, there's card-carrying Democrat Dr. Ruth's recent near-defection from the ranks.

She also, like Dennis Miller, appeared at a Bush fund raiser.

Perhaps the administraion was confused. Perhaps they didn't understand that Dr. Ruth was a well-known sex authority. Perhaps they invited her because they had heard she has a reputation as being an expert who enthusiastically evangalizes the virtues of both Dick and Bush.
posted by Dunvegan at 2:39 AM on July 2, 2003


Too bad that Dennis has chosen to spend the twilight of his career in the undignified posture of ass kissing as he plays court jester.

Indeed.
posted by rushmc at 5:55 AM on July 2, 2003


Republican humor is generally involuntary, so what can you do

As opposed to the left, who are effortlessly funny always. not.

Always makes me think of that John Callahan cartoom with the huge angry woman screaming "This is a FEMINIST bookstore, there is no humor section!"

Dennis Miller used to be funny, I respected the fact that he used mock both left and right wing stupidity(and there is truckloads of both) equally. I haven't watched or heard anything from him in years, so I couldn't say what I think of him now. But truth be told, I don't care if a comedian is sexist, racist, homophobic or offensive to three eyed midgets as long as they're funny.
posted by jonmc at 6:52 AM on July 2, 2003


I just take this as Miller trying to reinvent himself after the Monday Night Football debacle. His career was really in the toilet, and to suddenly become as unabashedly partisan as Rush is a direct line into the same, very dedicated kind of audience.
posted by kgasmart at 7:40 AM on July 2, 2003


He turns 50 this year. Hard to be alterna-angry-boy when you're old enough to be a grandpa.

It's hard, but certainly not impossible.
posted by soyjoy at 8:24 AM on July 2, 2003


Well, neocons come from all walks of life, I guess. Even celebrities.

And, really, who can blame them? What with philandering presidents and the democrats on Capitol Hill who don't seem to have a ball between them... And apparently the most charismatic candidate the democrats can come up with is Howard Dean.

I'd switch sides, too, if it weren't for my conscience.
posted by crunchland at 8:42 AM on July 2, 2003


Oh Soyjoy...but nobody can be the godfather of cool like Carlin can. Carlin is like a god of political humor. Thanks for that link!
posted by dejah420 at 10:20 AM on July 2, 2003


smart career move.
posted by mcsweetie at 10:38 AM on July 2, 2003


[Bush] added: "I was also honored to meet his wife, Carolyn. Like me, he married above himself. It may not be all that hard, in his case...."

Huh. In this quote Bush got halfway to self-awareness and stopped dead.
posted by orange swan at 11:13 AM on July 2, 2003


"Ok, folks - good to have you here for our little tightywhitey fundraiser; I gotta tell ya, I feel like Damacles with six aphids playing Wallenda on the thread... (Silence)

umm.. that is, I feel like Curly with Moe holding a big Hammer.... (Laughter...)

Ok, we're gonna be bashing the Liberal response to the lack of WMDs - turn your dictionaries to the words "paranoid," "Mephisto, " and "Septagenarian," and we'll begin.


While you're looking... no, sir, that's Mephisto with a p-h-i-s-t-o, not "Mah Sistuh"... I just wanna tell you how proud I am to be part of the real intelligencia...
posted by Perigee at 11:18 AM on July 2, 2003


Used to be funny and sharp -- now just emptying ranting. Mean spirited and pointless. I saw him on Leno and he was sickening with all of the cheerleading. Really pathetic. From comedian to pimp.
posted by {savg*pncl} at 10:04 PM on July 2, 2003


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