Tuesday, July 29, 2014

IMUS IN THE MORNING - Same Tune, Different Melody

Don't expect a glowing, brown-nosing review of the Imus in The Morning Program. There's plenty not to like about it, but compared to most morning shows, Imus and his crew of misfits are pretty funny.

And I suppose the best thing this show has going for it is that Imus is still Imus. You know, the shock jock from the 70's and 80's, but even better now with a bit more profound wit infusing his deadpan comments. Which, speaking of deadpan, the stiffest part of the show is Imus himself. (here it comes)

He sits at his mic, looking down with that intense stare, like a pissed-off eagle, and barely moves his mouth when he talks. C'mon, Imus, how much pain are you in? Loosen up, man. Life has been good to you, so why not show it once in a while. I mean, we don't expect you to act like a cartoon character, but for the love of God, I often watch and think someone needs to hold a mirror under his nose.

Not unlike the Crypt Keeper, or an embalmed animatronic version of the real Imus. It's weird, man. I'm tripping over that shit, bro. (Just taking things way back, folks.)

What's up with all that?

Okay, that being said, Imus does look quite dapper in his usual dark blue blazer, starched white shirt, and big, messy hair. Thank goodness he doesn't wear a tie. He'd most likely choke to death. He seems to come alive only when his lovely wife ( Deirdre) comes on the air.

Can't blame him there, she's awfully cute, and she admits to Imus that she farts, when he presses her for an answer, because he's never heard her fart before. (Howard Stern would be proud.) Imus does throw his right hand up, gesturing with a "let's go" twitch of his thumb when he goes to commercial. Other than that, Imus doesn't move around much. Although, he thankfully does light up when he covers a John Stewart segment, going from Totem Pole, to human being in the blink of an eye.

He reads some of the sponsor ads in a monotonous tone, repeating their phone number several times, sticking to his tried and true advertising formula. Not very watchable, or funny, but I'm sure his sponsors are happy with the results.

So, lets break it down on a good note.

Like all morning shows, it's live. Imus' program is especially raw but with stylized graphics featuring some of the I-Man's favorite music (Imagine Dragons, Temptations, etc.) during intermissions with views midtown New York City streets from the studio. Nice touch.

If you've never seen the show before, you might be thrown a bit as Imus sometimes hosts the show from his Ranch (Cancer Kids) in New Mexico. I think there's better interaction among the cast when Imus hosts from his New York City studio, for obvious reasons.

At any rate, the program includes a large crew of misfit reporters, comics, news hounds, and an assortment of funny bits mixed with top headlines, a variety of interesting guests, and an annoying stock ticker, catering to the show's affluent demographic, no doubt.

Some of the cast includes, Bernie McGuirk, his equally stiff producer, who's obviously been coached to appear more animated (It's not working). Tony Powell, the token black comic who never says much, Rob Bartlett, whose bit seems to be that he's embarrassingly unfunny, plus he's a dead ringer for Rush Limbaugh, odd stuff. The loud, Warner Wolf on sports, The lovely, sometimes pretentious, sometimes funny, Dagen McDowell as business reporter, to name a few.

In a recent program, Imus voiced his disdain for Santa Fe and Dagen commented that all Santa Fe had going for it was wannabe 'Okeefe artisans making sculptures in the shape of vaginas.' Touche.

Turns out, Imus in the Morning is the perfect blend of world news, politics, sports, and a good bit of laughter to lighten up all that hardcore stuff. Fun to watch, not exactly a laugh a minute, but close. Worth watching just to see Imus' irreverent take on just about everything.
He knows what's funny and how to deliver it without being obviously transparent about it. His pull-no-punches approach has served him well over the years, so why mess with it.

Great program, folks. If you're tired of all the canned, horribly scripted morning shows out there, check out Imus in the Morning, he's for real.

Overall ... good beats.

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