Is it that people just don’t like Rosie anymore, that no one wants variety shows anymore, or is it just the combination of Rosie and variety that’s poison?
It’s Rosie and variety. Rosie is antithetical to the entire draw of a variety show. A variety show is light-hearted and nice. Rosie is neither of these. She is heavy-handed and mean. That poisons the entire theme that people are looking for. (One of the things that all the reviewers seem to note is that she couldn’t resist taking cheap shots at her enemies. That is what mean people do.)
A variety show isn’t serious. That doesn’t mean that it couldn’t have a political bent (see Laugh In for example) but that bent has to be handled in a light-hearted and friendly way. Can you imagine Palin appearing on Rosie’s show like Nixon on Laugh In? Of course you can’t — Rosie is too mean and vindictive to even consider her.
Any ideas as to who could fit that role? Celebrities are so awful these days. Who wants to see how they behave presenting other celebrities?
Yup. Someone talented that isn’t mean. Awful really comes down to mean. Wayne Brady. (Preferably the one from Chapelle’s Show.) Neil Patrick Harris, as someone suggested in Althouse’s comments. John Travolta comes to mind. Trey Parker could do it — if the job is to not take shots at his enemies, I think he can do it, and he would love to have a variety show.
Find someone who doesn’t have an enemies list, doesn’t use the word “hate” when talking about people, and has a decent singing voice and can dance a little.