You know, part of me always thought that Bill O'Reilly was an entertainment goon -- someone who brays like an ass for showbiz value. You know, like Morton Downey.
Well, he put those illusions to rest tonight, dear readers. When I heard he was going to be on, I thought, Wow. Maybe we'll see what he's really like. Or maybe he'll put on a show for us?
Alas, no. What he did was glower and sneer. Stewart asked him, "Why so grumpy?" O'Reilly didn't even crack a smile. He glowered. And seethed.
And then he started going off on France. "France is the enemy!" he cried at one point. He insulted Stewart. He insulted the audience. It was like he was just soooo oppressed that he had to endure the presence of people.
And I note: None of this was with a wink to the audience. None of this was a show, as far as he was concerned. He is one pissed off dude, and he's pissed off at the weirdest things.
So why was he there? Because he's plugging a book. He didn't want to be there. That much was obvious. He had an opportunity to be civil -- or put on a show without the contempt for everyone else -- but he didn't want it. In fact, he seemed offended at the very idea that he should behave like a decent human being.
Oh, life is so hard for multi-millionaire television personalities. Pity Bill O'Reilly. He suffers so.
[Update: Crooks & Liars has the video. Check it out.]
[Update 2: Is O'Reilly quitting? (Wouldn't surprise me. This is a man who needs a lonnnnng vacation. Either that or some heavy doses of Prozac. C&L has video of Olbermann's reaction to the rumor.]