Saturday, March 2, 2013

Real Time with Bill Maher Episode 273 "In a Hand-Basket"

by Catherine Giordano

HBO’s “Real Time Bill Maher” took a vacation last week; this week (episode 273, airing on 3/1) it felt like they were still on vacation. A pretty blah show.

In the opening monologue, there were only two good jokes. In one Bill said that the equester is like not having the will power to diet and so you rig the refrigerator to blow up when you open the refrigerator door. In the other, Bill talked about the uproar about Obama melding Star Wars and Star Trek when he said “Jedi mind meld.” It is the Vulcan mind meld and the Jedi mind tricks. (Who knew?) Bill ridiculed the people who criticize the president for this faux pas by saying “they are experts in every world except the real one.”

The interview was with James Lyne, a cyber security expert. He’s 26 years old and an expert. You gotta love the computer age.  His main point was that malicious soft ware and cyber criminals are everywhere. Just when you thought it was safe to go the computer…

The panel included Steve Schmidt , a GOP campaign strategist who seems to be embarrassed to call himself a Republican.  Nonetheless, he sticks to the party line—at least among reasonable Republicans—that both sides are to blame.  (The unreasonable ones blame it all on Obama, or as Bill likes to jokingly call him, “Blackenstein.) ”  Yeah, Steve, they are both to blame--the Democrats are 2% to blame and the Republicans are 98% to blame.

Another panelist was Gavin Newsom, Lt. Governor of California.  Very smart, very amiable (very good looking), but he can make a point forcefully. He said it is like the Republicans put a crow bar into the spokes of government. “What’s wrong with these guys?”, he asked. This is the “say-it-one more-time” moment of the week. What’s wrong with these guys?

Monica Mehta was also on the panel.  She was described as a business and finance expert.  What she is clearly not an expert in is how to dress. Nix the cleavage when you are trying to present yourself as an expert on a talk show. Also when you are short- waisted with a large bosom, do not wear an oversized belt. OK, so I’m catty. I did not know anything about her before the show, and I know very little about her after the show. 

The panel discussed the sequester, the C-Pac convention and how they snubbed the most popular Republican in the country, Chris Christie, governor of New Jersey, the legalization of weed (I think that is discussed pretty much every other show.), the old pope and the who-knows- who the new pope will be, the voting rights act, and back once again to the decline of the Republican party.  Did you know that Obama has 33 million facebook friends and Romney only has 12 million.  If you watch the show you do.

Bill had a good joke about the prospective new pope and the conservatism of the Catholic church.  “How much reform could the new pope bring in before they poisoned him?”  

Bill talked about gerrymandering and the creation of “black districts.”  Like a lot of people, Bill apparently thinks that the Voting Rights Act was about electing blacks into office.  It is not. It is about letting black people vote. Just because we have an African- American president doesn’t mean that there are not elements in this society busy trying to disenfranchise blacks.

Snoop Lion, the artist formerly known as Snoop Dogg, was the special guest. He’s a pretty cool guy.  But what was up with Bill, poking him, touching him, and generally invading his personal space?

New Rules was about genetically modified food.  If it’s “Real Time with Bill Maher” you know that you are going to hear about religion (it’s bad) or weed (it’s good) or food (healthy food good, the typical American diet bad) or all three. He’s right on all of these issues, but he just wasn’t funny about them this week.  However, I did like the line where he said “Americans like to eat salty s**t, sugary s s**t, and cool ranch s**t, with extra s**t.” Every time I think of this statement, I crack up.

The whole world is going to s**t, and we’re headed off to H**l in a hand basket.  I’ll think I’ll go see if there are any Cheetos left in the pantry. (Just kidding, I don’t eat that s**t.)

I’ve gotten real busy with my day job, so my reviews have to be a lot shorter.

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The Pope's red shoes--I mean the former pope's red shoes-- are always good for a laugh.