- The Washington Times - Sunday, August 7, 2005

Carolla’s ‘Late’ move

Comedian Adam Carolla’s febrile brain wasn’t front and center as one-half of “The Man Show,” Comedy Central’s version of Maxim magazine sprung to raunchy life.

Now, Comedy Central viewers can see for themselves what makes the carpenter-turned-comic tick four nights a week.

And, for anyone who has heard the comic’s elaborate metaphors or philosophical musings on his syndicated radio show “Loveline,” it’s clear Mr. Carolla is more than just a potty mouth.

“Too Late with Adam Carolla” debuts at 11:30 tonight after the popular “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” and will run Monday through Thursday.

Mr. Carolla, unlike every other late-night wannabe, insists his show won’t reinvent the wheel. He’ll do on-the-street gags, interviews and taped sketches. Perhaps the biggest wrinkle, he says, is a lack of cue cards and a Teleprompter to guide him.

Cable television is a better fit for his humor than network television ever could be, he says.

“It’s the difference between working for Disney and working at the corner pizza store. With Disney, if you wanna put up a picture at your desk of your girlfriend wearing a bikini you gotta take it down. They’re worried about who’s suing them next and that’s the bottom line,” he says. “If you work at the pizza place you get to do what you want. It’s not a conglomeration.”

One could say Mr. Carolla is a bit of an industry unto himself these days. He still hosts radio’s syndicated “Loveline” five nights a week and is about to debut a home improvement show over at TLC.

Plus, he is in serious talks to replace Howard Stern on the West Coast when the radio king moves to Sirius satellite radio in January.

The critics haven’t made it easy for him.

He routinely jokes about “The Man Show” getting slammed by some scribes, and has regularly mocked one critic who dubbed him part-werewolf for his dark features.

He says he’s learned little from their slings and arrows.

“It’s like somebody cutting you off on the highway then being on the receiving end of their unsavory hand signal,” he says. “Is there anything that guy taught you about driving?”

Ultimately, “Too Late” will live and die by audiences, not professional TV watchers.

The new Wolf

CNN’s Wolf Blitzer kicks off his new, three hour news block at 3 p.m. today, with what the host promises will feature “old-fashioned, good, solid, serious journalism,” the Reuters news agency reports.

Don’t worry. We’re sure they’ll cover the missing-girl-in-Aruba case at least some of the time.

“The Situation Room,” not to be confused with “The Situation with Tucker Carlson” over at MSNBC, takes over for “Inside Politics” and the beleaguered “Crossfire” at the all-news network.

Mr. Wolf, a CNN veteran, will anchor the show out of a new District studio that will feature many of CNN’s top correspondents, contributors and analysts in a revolving format.

The studio includes several video screens where Mr. Blitzer, walking around the set, can take viewers to locations like Baghdad, New York, London, Paris and anywhere else news breaks. The block also will feature blogs, podcasts and other innovations.

Mr. Blitzer says the high-tech approach won’t change his hard-news focus and CNN’s standards.

“We’re not going to compromise the journalism, but we are going to take viewers behind the scenes, to see what we see,” Mr. Blitzer said during the network’s recent session at the Television Critics Association’s press tour.

There won’t be rundown sheets or strict time limits to stories. Mr. Blitzer noted that, in his 15 years at CNN, it’s seemed that TV journalism does not always allow time for pieces to develop beyond three minutes.

“We get so much more than we are able to get on the air,” he said. “We’re going to allow the show to breathe and evolve as it goes along.”

Brown extended

Bravo’s version of a car crash — the so-tawdry-you-can’t-look-away show known as “Being Bobby Brown” — is being stretched to add two episodes to its original run of eight.

The new episodes will air in the show’s 10 p.m. Thursday time slot with the season finale airing on Aug. 25

The episodes will give viewers a peek into the Atlanta and New Jersey homes of Bobby Brown and his wife Whitney Houston.

The couple, once mega-stars but now more famous for their addictions and rap sheets, let cameras follow them for the surprise reality hit.

Compiled by Christian Toto from staff and wire reports

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