Steve Carell and Ricky Gervais
This week television was overstuffed with funny people — intentional and otherwise. Bethenny Frankel injected some levity into her solemn nuptials. ESPN analysts made us chuckle by painstakingly stretching out four little words — "I'm going to Miami" — to nearly a half-hour. Joel McHale and Jay Leno were both good sports about not receiving Emmy nominations. Ricky Gervais was just what the doctor ordered. And Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert reunited, and the angels sang in comedy heaven. Welcome to Top Moments: Make 'Em Laugh Edition.
11. Best One-Liner: Bethenny Frankel's emotional wedding vows to Jason Hoppy on Bethenny Getting Married? included this not-so-teary refrain: "I thank God for that night in da club," she said, referring to their first meeting. Leave it to Bethenny to make us laugh while we're crying.
10. Best Spectacle: It was fun to see the clever casting of Bristol Palin as a teen mom/musician friend of Amy's on The Secret Life of the American Teenager, and the girl's not a professional actor, but wow! Her line delivery is as flat as her mother's Bumpit is fluffy. "I'm Yo-Yo Ma," she says. Not with that cadence!
9. Worst Luck: After So You Think You Can Dance's Alex Wong severed his Achilles' tendon during a rehearsal, he was automatically placed in the bottom three. On Thursday, the front-runner was sent packing so he could have surgery. Billy and Ashley should thank the dance gods for Alex's injury, for it may have bought them another week.
8. Best Innuendo: Big Brother 12 returned with a shamefully silly head-of-household competition featuring players flying across the backyard on oversized hot dogs covered in mustard and ketchup. The thinly veiled subtext was made clearest when Britney was injured during the competition. "I lost my dignity on a slippery wiener," she said.
7. Best Recovery: During the announcement of the Emmy nominations, academy Chairman John Shaffner had the awkward job of consoling Community's Joel McHale on live television after he, unlike his co-presenter, Sofia Vergara of Modern Family, failed to get a nod. "It's all right," McHale cracked. "I phoned it in."
6. Best Coinage: Mark, an accomplished photographer, decided to take a risk on Work of Art: The Next Great Artist and do a painting to evoke his day driving around Manhattan. The layered, repetitive grid, which Simon hopefully compared to Mondrian, failed to impress the judges, especially guest judge Richard Phillips. He said while there might be a certain satisfaction to the rigorousness, in the end "it amounts to nothing more than 'painterbation.'" Zing!
5. Best Response: Jay Leno has fun with his omission from the Emmy nominations. (Conan O'Brien, who submitted independently, received several.) "The good news is, The Tonight Show received four Emmy nominations," Leno announced during his monologue Thursday. "The bad news is, none of them were for me." He joked that since he won't need to attend the awards show Aug. 29, he plans to watch them at Oprah Winfrey's house with David Letterman, who was also shut out. Now that's a Super Bowl commercial sequel we'd love to see!
4. Worst Bedside Manner: On Louie, Louis C.K. goes to see an old friend, Dr. Ben Mitchell (guest star Ricky Gervais), when he isn't feeling well. The doctor's examination technique (warning: the clip contains profanity and partial nudity) is pretty horrifying — and hilarious. He mocks Louis' weight gain ("You don't need a doctor; you need a time machine," he cracks.) And that's before we get to the prostate exam...
3. Worst Overshare: During Jake Pavelka and Vienna Girardi's interview on The Bachelorette, viewers got the gory details about their short-lived relationship, including that they stopped "being intimate" with each other. (Whether it's due to the fasting or the fame, we may never know.) Host Chris Harrison spoke for America when the pair got into a boring he-said/she-said about her sick dog: "OK, we don't really care about the dog," he says. Actually, there's a lot about these two for which we don't care, but it's too late for that now.
2. Best Stall Tactics: ESPN gave Ryan Seacrest a run for his money when it comes to dragging out a small moment over 30 minutes Thursday during their much-hyped special for LeBron James, The Decision. Before we learned that James would be joining the Miami Heat, ESPN analysts resorted to examining how he would look in various team uniforms. Because it's not about the money or winning a championship. Ultimately, it's about fashion.
1. Best Reunion: When Steve Carell stopped by The Colbert Report Thursday, he and his former co-star spun comedy gold when they resurrected their famous Daily Show segment, "Even Stepvhen." In a truly hilarious battle of the (obviously fake) egos, Colbert called interviewing Carell a "vacation from substance"; Carell compared being on Comedy Central to being in the witness relocation program. P.S. If Carell insists on quitting The Office next year, can Comedy Central please try and make The Carell Corral happen?