The Rant: Cold on Colbert

(UPDATED 10/22) I am not without a sense of humor (anybody see the Ambiguously Gay Duo/Minneapolis police spoof on SNL Saturday?) and I am a big, big fan of the Jon Stewart-Stephen Colbert week-nightly comedy hour on Comedy Central.

So why don’t I find this recent “I’m running for president as both a Democrat/Republican in South Carolina” schtick of Colbert’s particularly funny? The rest of the media is just wetting its pants over it, as evidenced by the boatload of press the faux right-winger has generated since he hinted at his big announcement last Tuesday on his pal Stewart’s show, then made the announcement on his own show.

Nobody’s been more anxious to be in on the joke than the New York Times , which seems particularly devoted to the satirist’s nascent campaign.

Maureen Dowd appeared to start it all a week ago with the cute trick of turning over her column to him, where he hinted at the pending “news.” This is the same Pulitzer-Prize winning hardballer who turned into a blushing, giggling schoolgirl around Colbert and Stewart during an interview for Rolling Stone last year.

Colbert’s announcement was followed by a second Times story that intimated that the man was really serious, having placed calls to South Carolina political apparachiks.

Now today, following Colbert’s appearance on Meet the Press [transcript here]our adored local boy and big time columnist David Carr weighed in on l’affaire Colbert and finally, finally began to peel back the Saran Wrap on this bullshit…even if he did so with the utmost in respect and tenderness.

Big media was taken to task during the release of “Borat” for playing along with Sacha Baron Cohen’s grotesque character rather than forcing Cohen himself to the forefront of interviews. The media hung its head in shame–kind of–and the movie went on to make gazillions at the box office. Now it appears that hangover has subsided and it’s once again time to report sham as news and vice versa, and send Colbert’s book sales and ratings soaring.

Steve, my plea borrows some infamous words from your buddy Jon: Stop. Stop. Stop hurting America.

Stop helping mainstream media behave like fawning wannabe-cool assholes. Stop. Go do your show. Sell your book–you’ve got a platform most authors would kill for.

I’m seriously trying to figure out whether the stock market’s going down the tubes, if we’re about to bomb the shit out of Iran, and which actual presidential candidate is worthy of my attention. Frankly, all your dicking around is distracting formerly reputable journalists from doing their jobs. It was cute when Pat Paulson did it–everyone knew he was kidding.

I’m not even sure half your viewers know that your show is a spoof, let alone your candidacy. That’s the scariest development of all, if you continue with this bit.

I have to add this, from hyper-glossy Portfolio mag. It pretty well echoes Deborah’s take on the Colbert campaign.

LAMBERT: Oh boy. The wagon is rolling. Now there’s this from And this from Huffington Post.

RYBAK: They can eat my dust. Cool, gives Jimmy and his buddy others to yell at….