By: T.R. Slyder, TRSlyder@yahoo.com
And I'm all for it. Not content to merely get a job because of his famous father, Joe Buck had to cash in more than he already has (calls two sports on Fox- and their championships, endorses Budweiser) and have his own talk show. Get rich, or get your card pulled tryin'.
You can check out a synopsis of the fallout at SI.com here, and see it here on HuffPo, and a clip of it on Deadspin.
The long and short of it is that Artie hijacked Buck's new show on HBO. Am I supposed to be surprised by this? Artie, an occasional vitriolic-spewing drunk, was booked as a guest on the very much pro-establishment Joe Buck's first show. Isn't that exactly why they booked Artie- to appeal to that demographic and put out the "No, I'm not overly pro-establishment. I can mix it up with recovering addicts and edgy guys too! Just watch!" vibe? So why the feigned disappointed from the Buck camp? Buck tried too hard too appeal to ALL demographics, and one of them pulled his card, and make him look like a cash-grabbing doofus.
Before Artie, Buck had a segment with Brett Favre, then did a piece with David Wright, then had a segment with Chad Ochocinco and Michael Irvin. So Buck was really shooting for every demographic here- the huge star in America's favorite sport, Favre- whom everyone knows and most of middle America loves. Then David Wright, who most New Yorkers love, especially single New York women. Then he had on two brothers' brothers- Irvin and Ochocinco. So Buck was really hitting on all demographic cylinders- Middle-America football fans, black football fans, East coasters, women, and baseball fans. For his next segment he had an SNL guy (Jason Sudekis, Paul Ruud and Artie- now he's going for the "dude" demographic- the Deadspin readers, the college dudes, the stoners, and people more interested in pop-culture than in sports. Sounds like Buck and his HBO handlers went a bridge too far with the last group of guests. This is what happens when you stretch yourself too thin and try to interview people from every single demographic, whether you connect with them or not. When you cannot, you look like a cash-grabbing doofus.
It's also worth mentioning that Sudekis and Ruud are exceptionally witty individuals- had they chose to come to the aid of Buck and get land a few jabs at Lange, I'm sure they could have done so with some degree of success. Instead, they laid back and watched it unfold. It's like when you were little and see you a schoolyard fight and you figure you should break it up, then one of the friends of a kid in the fight, holds you back and prevents you from breaking it up, so the fight can unfold organically. Sudekis and Ruud kind of held their arms out and made sure no one broke up the fight.
I'm glad it happened. After Joe Buck and Troy Aikman were named Fox's #1 football announcing tandem I remember Buck being on Leno or Conan and talking about how he's overexposed and how he knows people must be sick of him. He was 100% correct then, and I can't think of why he took the offer from HBO. Oh right, money. He does the World Series, Super Bowl, Fox Sunday Baseball, regular season football, and Budweiser commercials and now he needs a show?
Since Buck got t his card pulled while tryin' to get rich makes one of his beer commercials even funnier. Back when Buck was only a humble two-sport announcer and pitchman he did a commercial that effectively called out self-promoting, schtick-oriented announcers who try to cash in on their catch phrases. Now it appears he was hoisted by his own retard, or whatever the saying is.
"Why would I want to play down to the fans or do something that doesn't come naturally?", he asks in the commercial. You mean you "naturally" hang out with Artie Langue and Chad Ochocinco and Michael Irvin? And you "naturally" endorse Budweiser on your own, so you just figured you'd get paid to do it? Again Joe, the answer is money. You did it for the money, and you got your card pulled tryin'.