Gilbert and Sullivan Do TV Chat

Gilbert and Sullivan Do TV Chat

Gilbert and Sullivan Do TV Chat

Gossip, speculation, and scuttlebutt about politics.
Feb. 3 2000 12:42 PM

Gilbert and Sullivan Do TV Chat

Chatterbox, in a jaunty mood inspired by Mike Leigh's irresistible new Gilbert and Sullivan biopic, Topsy-Turvy, brought a CD of The Mikado to the office. While listening to "Three Little Maids From School Are We," Chatterbox read a transcript of Monica Crowley's Feb. 1 appearance on Fox News Network's Hannity & Colmes. Crowley's career as a pundit has intrigued Chatterbox ever since she got caught plagiarizing a Paul Johnson article about her former mentor, Richard Nixon--and refused to fess up! (Click here and here to read Chatterbox's earlier items about this incident.)

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Anyhow, Chatterbox was listening to "Three Little Maids From School Are We"--and reading Crowley's severe moral judgments about Hillary Clinton and her Senate candidacy--when he was struck by a bolt of inspiration not unlike the one that strikes William S. Gilbert in Topsy-Turvy. You know, when Gilbert's wife hauls him off to a London exposition on Japanese culture and he dreams up The Mikado ...

A singing public-affairs chat show!

As dialogue, the quest for verbal dominance between Crowley and Alan Colmes was tedious and shrill, even when read off a transcript. But as recitative, it might just sparkle! Consider the following authentic passage:

Colmes:Big deal. She just--then she said, "Maybe I'm not tall enough. Maybe I'm not short enough." It was a joke. What--what's the big deal?

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Crowley:It's always something with Hillary Clinton, you know?

Colmes:You take this little sliver of something she said, you want to blow it up and ...

Crowley:Wait a minute. Wait a minute.

Colmes:... make a big deal about it.

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Crowley:Wait. You say that she's joking. But really, her emoting like this doesn't serve her very well. She doesn't understand that the reason people don't like her and why there's such intense dislike for this woman is because she and her husband have led the most corrupt administration in American history. No. 1, OK?

Add a few tweaks and--voila! You have a Gilbert and Sullivan operetta:

Colmes:  

She said, "Maybe I'm not tall enough"

And "Maybe I'm not short enough."

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Crowley:   

She clearly is not tall enough,

She clearly is not short enough,

It's always something, is it not?

Colmes:  

It isn't something, not a jot.

She said it was a joke,

Just to amuse the folk.

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Crowley:  

Just to amuse the folk?

You are a stupid bloke.

It's always something, is it not,

With Hillary--she's quite a sot!

Colmes:  

You take this little sliver,

Oh, it really makes me shiver.

Chorus:   

Yes, it really makes him shiver

When you take this little sliver,

She said it was a joke,

Just to amuse the folk.

Colmes:   

And now you want to blow it up,

And I just want to slow it up,

You really are quite dangerous,

You big-haired, brassy plagiarist!

Chorus:   

She really is quite dangerous,

Dick Nixon's little plagiarist!

Paul Johnson please take note,

It was just a little joke!

Crowley:  

Wait a minute. Wait a minute.

Colmes:   

Now you've got me in a swivet.

Crowley:   

You say that she is joking.

But it's really just emoting.

And it doesn't serve her very well.

With voters, it will ring a bell.

Colmes:   

With the voters it will ring a bell,

With voters you can never tell.

But tell me, big-haired plagiarist,

Who really is quite dangerous,

Did you coin that phrase as well?

The one about a bell?

Chorus:    

Did she coin that phrase as well?

The one about a bell?

Or did she merely copy it

And chalk it up to sloppiness,

Or worse, did she deny the source

Had passed before her eyes--of course!

You cannot be a plagiarist

Of something you've not seen.

O Monica! How keen!

Crowley:   

The people do not like her,

And the reason they dislike her

Is because she and her hubby

(Who has got a little chubby)

Lead the most corrupt administration in American history,

And believe me, that will tend to make the voters oh-so blistery.

Colmes:    

"The most corrupt administration in American history,"

Is a phrase I've heard before,


When wingers toss manure.


I really feel quite sure.


Yes, I'm absolutely sure.


Did you steal that from Paul Johnson, too,


Or pick it off the floor?

Chorus:   

Did she steal that one from Johnson, too,

Or pick it off the floor?

She really is quite dangerous,

That brassy big-haired plagiarist.

She said it was a joke!

Now don't be such a dope!

Aw, Monica, don't mope!

You're just a big-haired plagiarist

Who really is quite dangerous,

We wish you would not favor us

With your presence any more!

Curtain.