Today's News: Our Take


Roughly 18.5 million viewers watched Bob Guiney pick Estella over Kelly Jo on Wednesday's Bachelor finale, making it the night's top-rated show. The serial kisser wisely chose not to propose to the 28-year-old baby-voiced Californian. He instead asked Est to wear the ring on her right hand, saying, "It represents my promise to you to see where we can go." Given Bob's tonsil-hockey addiction, I'm guessing they'll be going their separate ways shortly after tonight's After the Final Rose wrapup show. read more


Authorities in Palm Beach are reportedly investigating whether Rush Limbaugh illegally funneled money to buy prescription painkillers. On his radio show, the right-winger denied the allegations. "I was not laundering money," he said. "I was withdrawing money, for crying out loud." Limbaugh returned to the airwaves Monday after a five-week stint in rehab. read more


In light of Jacko's latest child abuse scandal, CBS has decided to postpone its Michael Jackson Number Ones special, which was scheduled to air next Wednesday. "Given the gravity of the charges against Mr. Jackson, we believe it would be inappropriate at this time to broadcast an entertainment special," the network said in a statement. News programs on Jackson, however, are fair game. The major networks are busy prepping specials on the singer's latest troubles. First up: NBC's Dateline, which will devote its entire Friday show to the baby-danglin' Gloved One. read more


David Spade has signed on to do a multiple-episode arc on ABC's 8 Simple Rules. He'll play a relative of the grieving Hennessys. read more


Word is out that actor Jonathan Brandis was discovered dead in his Los Angeles apartment on Nov. 12. The 27-year-old actor was beloved among Gen-Xers for his roles in Neverending Story 2 and NBC's mid-90s series, seaQuest DSV. Coroners pointed to suicide as the possible cause of death, although more testing will occur before a final ruling. Fans last saw Brandis — looking very handsome and grown up — in his recent indie film, The Year That Trembled. read more


One of the miracle workers featured on Extreme Makeover is opening a chain of plastic surgery centers that will offer the same services as the ABC hit. Plastic surgeon Garth Fisher will lend his name to The Advanced Aesthetics Institute, which will offer everything from hair and wardrobe consultations to complete surgical overhauls, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Ugly people should make tracks to Palm Beach, Fla., where the first center is set to open this week. read more


Sporting handcuffs and a sizeable entourage, Michael Jackson surrendered to Santa Barbara authorities today to face child abuse charges that could send him to the slammer for 10 years. He was booked and released on $3 million bail. In an expletive-laced tirade on CNN, Jacko's bro, G-lister Jermaine Jackson, called the accusations "nothing more than a modern-day lynching." (Someone needs to simmer!) New details, meanwhile, are surfacing about the case against the singer. According to reports, the allegations were made by a 12-year-old cancer victim who said the King Of Pop plied him with wine and then molested him at his Neverland Ranch. read more


Record producer Phil Spector was formally charged Thursday with murder in the shooting death of B-movie actress Lana Clarkson last February. Spector is currently free on $1 million bail. read more


Gene Anthony Ray, best known for playing street-smart teen Leroy in the 1980 movie Fame and the subsequent TV series, died Friday of complications from a recent stroke. He was 41. In related news, actress Kellie Waymire, who guest-starred on Six Feet Under and Friends, and had a recurring role as Elizabeth Cutler on Star Trek: Enterprise, died last week of natural causes. She was 36. read more


David Letterman has been stood up by Paris Hilton! The hotel heiress-turned-sex tape siren has reportedly pulled out of her planned appearance on Wednesday's Late Show. Hilton was booked to talk about her upcoming Fox reality show The Simple Life. read more

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