Jimmy Kimmel improves a long day of TV.

What you're watching.
Jan. 27 2003 11:45 AM

Super Bowl Mondays Always Get Me Down

Jimmy Kimmel Live improves a long, slow day of TV.

The man of the late night hour
The man of the late night hour

It's late, and I'm still waiting. I have waited through the Saturday Night Live halftime show (NBC), two suspenseless quarters (ABC), the post-game (ABC), Alias (ABC), the local news (ABC), and now, as the clock officially clicks over to Super Bowl Monday, Ted Koppel finally announces, "There will be no special post-Super Bowl edition of Nightline tonight so that ABC can bring you the following piece of garbage." At last: the premiere of Jimmy Kimmel Live (ABC).

Although he has been delayed by 47 minutes, Jimmy Kimmel still bounces joyfully down a line of fans, casually slapping hands and making his way to a red talk-show desk inside the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles, where a live audience is starved, as I guess I now am, for his presence. Chubby, nondescript, Kimmel wears a light brown jacket and a white checked shirt. He takes the desk. "Welcome to Enjoy It While It Lasts, my new talk show." Oh no. Colin Quinn made a lot of I'm-about-to-get-canceled jokes on Tough Crowd With Colin Quinn (Comedy Central), and now that show seems to be on a permanent cigarette break. How about a rugged man show with some confidence in the first quarter?

Advertisement

Snoop Dogg is Kimmel's co-host; George Clooney and Warren Sapp (a Buccaneer) are his guests. The co-host concept, I believe, is the show's innovation. Snoop will spend the whole six-day week with Kimmel. They may have conversations like tonight's:

"Who do you root for?"

"Steelers."

"Why do you root for the Steelers?"

"I've been rooting for them since the '70s."

And these conversations may be inexplicably diverting because Kimmel is laboring so hard to be cute and start a show ("I am the new Queen of Nice"), and Snoop, though he's off marijuana, always looks like he couldn't care less. It's a comical contrast. And then, when George Clooney joins them, pouring out three glasses of vodka, the conversation kicks up a notch—to the subject of what they can and can't say on network TV.

"You can say 'ass,' " Clooney proposes.

Snoop rouses himself. "You can say ass?"

TODAY IN SLATE

Politics

The Democrats’ War at Home

How can the president’s party defend itself from the president’s foreign policy blunders?

Congress’ Public Shaming of the Secret Service Was Political Grandstanding at Its Best

Michigan’s Tradition of Football “Toughness” Needs to Go—Starting With Coach Hoke

A Plentiful, Renewable Resource That America Keeps Overlooking

Animal manure.

Windows 8 Was So Bad That Microsoft Will Skip Straight to Windows 10

Politics

Cringing. Ducking. Mumbling.

How GOP candidates react whenever someone brings up reproductive rights or gay marriage.

Building a Better Workplace

You Deserve a Pre-cation

The smartest job perk you’ve never heard of.

Hasbro Is Cracking Down on Scrabble Players Who Turn Its Official Word List Into Popular Apps

Florida State’s New President Is Underqualified and Mistrusted. He Just Might Save the University.

  News & Politics
Politics
Sept. 30 2014 9:33 PM Political Theater With a Purpose Darrell Issa’s public shaming of the head of the Secret Service was congressional grandstanding at its best.
  Business
Moneybox
Sept. 30 2014 7:02 PM At Long Last, eBay Sets PayPal Free
  Life
Gaming
Sept. 30 2014 7:35 PM Who Owns Scrabble’s Word List? Hasbro says the list of playable words belongs to the company. Players beg to differ.
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 30 2014 12:34 PM Parents, Get Your Teenage Daughters the IUD
  Slate Plus
Behind the Scenes
Sept. 30 2014 3:21 PM Meet Jordan Weissmann Five questions with Slate’s senior business and economics correspondent.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Sept. 30 2014 8:54 PM Bette Davis Talks Gender Roles in a Delightful, Animated Interview From 1963
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 30 2014 7:00 PM There’s Going to Be a Live-Action Tetris Movie for Some Reason
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Sept. 30 2014 11:51 PM Should You Freeze Your Eggs? An egg freezing party is not a great place to find answers to this or other questions.
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 30 2014 5:54 PM Goodbye, Tough Guy It’s time for Michigan to fire its toughness-obsessed coach, Brady Hoke.