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Kyle Smith (Twitter: @rkylesmith) is critic-at-large for National Review, theater critic for The New Criterion and the author of the novels Love Monkey and A Christmas Caroline. Type a title in the box above to locate a review.

Buy Love Monkey for $4! "Hilarious"--Maslin, NY Times. "Exceedingly readable and wickedly funny romantic comedy"--S.F. Chronicle. "Loud and brash, a helluva lot of fun"--Entertainment Weekly. "Engaging romp, laugh-out-loud funny"-CNN. "Shrewd, self-deprecating, oh-so-witty. Smith's ruthless humor knows no bounds"--NPR

Buy A Christmas Caroline for $10! "for those who prefer their sentimentality seasoned with a dash of cynical wit. A quick, enjoyable read...straight out of Devil Wears Prada"--The Wall Street Journal

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    Is Olive Garden Backing Away from Letterman?

    By kyle | June 18, 2009

    Olive Garden kinda sorta denies they’re pulling ads from David Letterman because of the Sarah Palin controversy. But won’t say whether, in fact, we will be seeing Olive Garden spots on Letterman. And the original Politico story looks pretty solid. Question: Will Letterman, that scourge of the mighty, tribune of the truth, use this opportunity to make fun of Olive Garden? Here’s the basic oxymoron of edgy late-night comics: They’re corporate edgy. They can be as “controversial” as they want about safe and approved topics such as the sluttiness or all-out evil of conservatives. But they have to be edgeless enough to attract ads from corporate American behemoths. UPDATE: Gawker says it’s protests from Hillary Clinton fans that are scaring the advertisers! Hey, I thought lefty feminists didn’t mind it when professional women were called slutty and their underage daughters deemed knock-up-able — if those women are conservative. Color me surprised. I really, really hope Gov. Palin does not go on the Letterman show to make nice, show she has a sense of humor, etc. If she does, the story ends. Let Letterman twist in the wind. He can’t back out of this unless Palin lets him. She should go on a rival show and be quietly dismissive of Dave, make a joke and say something like, “Oh dear, I guess I’m threatening to poor Dave in some way. Well, he has the right to make whatever tasteless jokes he likes, but we all have a right to not watch his feeble little show.”

    Topics: Comedy, Politics, Sarah Palin, TV | 5 Comments »

    5 Responses to “Is Olive Garden Backing Away from Letterman?”

    1. KS Says:
      June 18th, 2009 at 7:02 pm

      HillBuzz was involved in the protests, and I think that the bloggers there are gay men ….

    2. Bubba Says:
      June 19th, 2009 at 1:55 am

      As I understand it, Harvey Pekar, creator of the comic American Splendor, really REALLY got on Letterman’s nerve back during his days at NBC, for precisely the same criticism that he’s edgy only in a way that’s safe to his corporate bosses.

      I saw a pretty good article about it online, and the clips of the confrontation are pretty easy to find on YouTube.

      I don’t agree with all of the big-picture stuff the essayist writes, but there’s at least some truth to the conclusion that Dave Letterman is — as the essay puts it, invoking the phrase used by George Orwell in his criticism of Mark Twain — a “licensed jester.”

    3. Hunter Tremayne Says:
      June 19th, 2009 at 4:07 pm

      This boring “scandal” ought to go away but the dimwitted Palin does so enjoy making a horses ass out of herself. Exactly who does she think she’s trying to fool?

    4. Bunter Ptomayne Says:
      June 19th, 2009 at 7:15 pm

      Hear, hear. But do we really expect this unsophisticated rube to be able to see the humor in such a pithy, urbane rape joke? It’s simply beyond them.

      Slatterns like her need to be told to shut up and get back in the kitchen or the next thing you know they’ll have the unmitigated audacity to vote or maybe even run for office or something.

      Well, if they don’t know their place, they deserve what they get, right Hunt?

    5. Angie Says:
      June 26th, 2009 at 2:43 pm

      Mock outrage on the part of Palin team. A way to make the big liberal media and tv channels look like they are picking on down home values (like abstinence which Palin couldn’t even instill into her own children). Proof of which was her bloated acceptance of Letterman’s apology in which she brought it back to the troops. If you actually were concerned about your daughters well-being, you would say thank you and not use it as a ploy to promote your political aspirations. Sarah Palin makes me sick. She is representative of everything that is wrong with the republican party. No, I correct myself, she is what is wrong with all of american politics.