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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Thursday, July 31, 2014

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In Movies & TV Commentary

Carol Burnett should be on the short list of "SNL" hosts.

In Movies & TV Commentary

Could "Heroes" return in a different form?

In Movies & TV Commentary

"Kirk," from Green Bay, is looking for love on the coming season of ABC's "The Bachelorette."

OnMedia: Who follows Betty White?


Betty White's tour de force last weekend as the host of NBC's "Saturday Night Live" brought critical acclaim, strong ratings and raises a legitimate question:

Who's next?

Facebook pages are already forming in some campaigns to get SNL to pick an unconventional host. It's not likely that route will work again.

But the business success of the White appearance makes it likely that Lorne Michaels is at least thinking about repeating the magic.

I have a handful of my own suggestions, classic TV comedy figures who I think should get a shot at letting a younger generation of viewers know who they are -- while bringing some older viewers to SNL.

1. Carol Burnett -- She hosted a very different comedy/variety show on CBS in the 1960s and '70s, but she paved the way for the funny women who were highlighted, along with White, on last week's SNL.

2. Mary Tyler Moore -- "The Dick Van Dyke Show" in the 1960s and "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" in the 1970s are among the top sitcoms of all time. And she kept Betty White working in the '70s.

3. Bob Newhart -- He deserves a shot just for spawning the "Hi, Bob" drinking game that grew out of reruns of his 1970s sitcom. You know, do a shot every time somebody says, "Hi, Bob."

4. Don Rickles -- He was the subject of a HBO film, "Mr. Warmth: The Don Rickles Project," a couple years ago and his particular brand of insult comedy deserves exposure to another generation of TV viewers.

5. Carl Reiner -- The creative force behind "The Dick Van Dyke Show" is still a pretty funny guy.

There are many other possibilities, including Dick Van Dyke himself, or Bill Cosby. Carol Burnett raises the possibility of Tim Conway.

There are a lot of TV comedy veterans out there who can still be funny. Who do you think deserves a shot at hosting SNL?

On TV: Door County's landmark White Gull Inn is a finalist in a "Good Morning America" breakfast competition for its cherry-stuffed French toast on Saturday morning's show, which airs at 6 a.m. on Channel 12. On-line voting will pick the winner.

  • Channel 4 is giving an hour of prime-time real estate to a Memorial Day airing of "Flight of Honor: The Incredible Journey of 296 Wisconsin World War II Veterans." WTMJ-AM (620) talker Charlie Sykes hosts the May 31 program, along with Channel 4 anchors Mike Jacobs and Carole Meekins.
  • A Green Bay guy identified only as "Kirk," a 27-year-old sales consultant, is one of 25 guys vying for the had of "Bachelorette" Ali Fedotowsky. ABC's "Bachelorette" begins airing May 24 on Channel 12.
  • Channel 12 has signed a "multi-year" deal with ESPN to continue to simulcast the sports channel's Green Bay Packers games. The arrangement dates back to 1992.
  • The latest buzz is that "Heroes" won't be on NBC's fall schedule when it's released next week. But it could be back as a TV movie. Nothing's official, however.
Alec follows Betty: Since we opened with "SNL" today, let's close on the same topic. Alec Baldwin has hosted the show 14 previous times. This weekend's show ties him with Steve Martin for the most hosts.

Here are the promos for this week's show:


Talkbacks

cuprisin | May 13, 2010 at 4:38 p.m. (report)

Idle1, You're thinking of Richard Dean Anderson. And Alba, how you play "Hi, Bob" is you own business.

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devidia | May 13, 2010 at 1:10 p.m. (report)

Do you really think that Betty White's recent resurgence is due to just that Snickers ad? I mean, the ad was funny and all, but there must be more to it than that. Also, I thought simply saying "Bob" was what triggered the hoisting of one's favourite beverage?

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Patcard | May 13, 2010 at 12:35 p.m. (report)

I don't think anyone you listed would do well ratings-wise, as they are all much more low profile nowadays than Betty White. Betty has appeared in a number of popular shows in recent years that are geared toward younger people, and she has always been willing to adapt to today's kind of humor, which would normally be considered vulgar to people of her generation. Case in point is the superbowl commercial and her guest spot on Family Guy a few years back where she did the audio book version of "Peterotica". Both were genuniely funny (by today's standards) and made her known to a new generation of people who are the ones who watch SNL. Everyone else you listed just rely on their original schtick which is extremely dated and even unknown to a lot of people under 30.

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Idle1 | May 13, 2010 at 11:56 a.m. (report)

RE: SNL host How about the lead actor (can't recall his name) from the show McGyver in a face-off against McGruber?

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