You’re Back? Why?
Revivals and “returns” are almost always inferior to the original event or art. I think they’re usually launched because of a dearth of originality and an inability to develop something original.
Jon Stewart, who was one funny and thought-provoking guy—and who launched others’ careers—is back with some kind of rehash that’s pretty depressing. He doesn’t look good, personally (this is what I look like today, he comments, and I’m not happy about it either), and it’s hard to tell when he’s trying to be insightful, provocative, or funny (or all three). Why did he feel the need to do this? Jay Leno has come back with the old Groucho Marx show from the 50s, You Bet Your Life, and Leno looks uncomfortable, puffy, and isn’t funny at all. David Letterman today looks like a cross between a Yeti and Santa Claus.
These guys have more money than God. They don’t have other interests, other outlets? They can’t fund new material?
Here’s the lesson from my vantage point: It’s hard to be funny when you take yourself too seriously.