Today's News: Our Take


LETTERMAN SPEAKS

On Monday's Late Show, David Letterman thanked the Montana authorities who helped unravel that alleged plot to kidnap his 16-month-old son. "Last week my family and I were involved in a little legal activity," he said, "and fortunately everything turned out fine, but I want to just take a second here to thank some people." Among the folks he singled out: two FBI agents, the local sheriff and "the great people of Choteau, Mont.," where he has a ranch. A handyman employed by Letterman was arrested Thursday and charged with solicitation, obstruction and theft. A hearing is scheduled for today. read more

JACKO UPDATE

Michael Jackson is in some serious need of Doan's, Doan's, Doan's, Doan's, Doan's. The accused child molester, who is allegedly suffering from severe back problems, arrived to court late (again) Monday with an entourage of doctors, lawyers and D-list relatives. Once in the courtroom, the singer started sobbing and shaking, at one point excusing himself to the bathroom to pull himself together. He later told reporters that he was "very much hurt" and on medication "by way of a doctor." As opposed to, "by way of that crack whore in the alleyway." read more

SHORT CUTS

Jay Mohr has inked a deal with Sony Pictures Television to create, star in and produce projects better than Last Comic Standing, per The Hollywood Reporter... Ex-Growing Pains star Tracey Gold was sentenced Monday to three years' probation and 240 hours of community service for a felony DUI conviction stemming from a car crash last September... Sideways star Thomas Haden Church will play the new, as-yet-unidentified villain in Spider-Man 3 read more

NEXT STOP: VH1

Olympic champ Michael Phelps and boxing great Sugar Ray Leonard will join a veritable who's who of has-beens and nobodies (Raj Bhakta? Brody Hutzler? Nicola Breytenbach?) as judges of this year's Miss USA pageant, airing April 11 on NBC. read more

EXEC SHUFFLE

There's been a major power shift at Fox. Gail Berman, the network's entertainment president since 2000, is leaving her post to take a job at Paramount Pictures. During her tenure, Berman greenlit such hits as American Idol, 24 and The O.C.. Of course, she was also responsible for her share of duds, including Who's My Daddy?, My Big Fat Obnoxious Boss, That '80s Show and the now-infamous catchphrase, "Audiences are responding to Quintuplets." There's no word on who'll succeed Berman, but let's pray whoever it is will exercise more restraint with those freakin' 24 promos. read more

BEN THERE, NOT DONE THAT

Flop-magnet Ben Affleck will make his directorial debut with the Paramount flick Gone, Baby, Gone, per Variety. Based on the novel by Mystic River author Dennis Lehane, the story follows a pair of Boston-based private eyes who are hired to search for a kidnapped girl. And in a boon to Gone's box-office prospects, Affleck will not appear in the film. read more

Question: Settle a bet for ...

Question: Settle a bet for me. I contend that on the Western The Guns of Will Sonnett, Jason Evers was Will Sonnett, Walter Brennan played his father and Dack Rambo was his son. My friend says Brennan was Will Sonnett. Who's right? Thanks. — Hank, Dallas

Televisionary: Sorry, Hank, but your friend is, as you'll see right here.

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PREPARE FOR HEARTBREAK

Talk about a dream team: Arrested Development's Jason Bateman and SNL's Amy Poehler have been cast in The Heartbreak Kid, a DreamWorks comedy about a guy (Bateman) who discovers that his new wife (Poehler) is a psychopath while on their honeymoon. read more

Question: There was a show on ...

Question: There was a show on Saturday mornings in the mid-'70s that no one my age seems to remember. I bow to your archival brain and resources. It was a Sid and Marty Krofft-type show, in a variety format, emceed by a goofy band called Kaptain Kool and the Kongs (who were they really?). They had segments such as "The Island of Doctor Shrinker" with Billy Barty as Dr. Shrinker's assistant and "Electra Woman." — Reagan

Televisionary: It was more than Krofft-like, Reagan. It was an actual Krofft production and as regular readers know well, I never tire of writing about all things Krofft since, being a child of the '70s, I was weaned on that stuff.

You're talking about The Krofft Supershow, which ran on ABC's Saturday-morning schedule for two years beginning in September 1976. Hosted by rock band Kaptain Kool and the Kongs (whose members were the good Kaptain, Superchick, Turkey, Nashville and Flatbush), the series consisted of sh read more

24 Did Jack finally make a huge...

24
Did Jack finally make a huge miscalculation by agreeing to make himself a hostage? There must have been a better way to get to Marwan. In fact, Tony's idea of capturing Joseph Fayed was a lot less dangerous and totally doable. After all, Jack and Dina were able to walk up to the guy's house and knock on his freaking door! Seems to me CTU would've had a pretty good shot at dragging him in for a light evening of torture and questioning. Looks like that's how Jack will be spending his evening. Meanwhile, who really thought that Dina would shoot Jack? It's times like these you think, "No way they're gonna kill off the star of the show." And, of course, you're right. I was bummed to see Dina go, and in such an awful way (though I'm looking forward to Shohreh Aghdashloo's Emmy nod). At least Chloe's back and in command, working the satellites with furrowed brow and clenched jaw. (Am I weird for thinking there's read more

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