Roger L. Simon

For Letterman, adultery pays

Last week, Polanski. This week, Letterman.

It’s a compendium of ugly Hollywood Habits with the second one coming up soon on the next Poliwood. Of course, Letterman is merely opera bouffe compared to Polanski’s serious crime of child rape. All the talk show host did was cheat on his wife a few times – or did he? I am confused here. When was the guy married and when wasn’t he? Does having a kid with someone while not being married, but still cheating on her, count as adultery? Who knows and, frankly, who cares?

My problem with Letterman is this: I don’t find him funny. For all the Letterman writers composing those lists of ten and the fancy guest like the president, etc., I’d much rather watch “Red Eye,” which probably doesn’t have much of a writing staff and so far hasn’t had any administration guests, to my knowledge, but has a much cleverer host and funny sidekicks. Letterman’s predictable comedy (with its pathetic and inaccurate nastiness about other people’s private lives, i. e. Palin) is an indication of how square liberals have become. Greg Gutfeld, the putative conservative, is considerably more hip – and more decent.

Of course, right now the Letterman Show is hotter than a Michael Moore movie (a lot hotter than the latest one) with ratings for his talk show going through the roof and acing competitors Jay Leno and Conan O’Brien. It’s all about the scandal. Maybe they can admit affairs of their own and catch up!

It’s all rather like bear-baiting. Watching Geraldo discussing the subject on his late night show (yes, I was desperate) was beyond self-parody. When it comes to adultery, he may be the TV king. But he’s relegated to weekend now. Yesterday’s adultery is yesterday’s adultery. The rabble yearns for more. Fortunately for Geraldo, Letterman, etc., they don’t live in Saudi Arabia.