Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Myers' failure enlightens us.

My take has always been, if someone says they have no ego, they usually have an ego that could cast a shadow across the grand canyon. The very boast that you have no ego is in itself egotistical. For an entertainer to say they have no ego is either ridiculous or delusional. It is most defintely a contradiction in terms.
The poster for Mike Myer's weekend flop sported the tagline, "His karma is huge." That turned out to be bad karma for Paramount (their first of the summer) and for Myers, who was beaten up twice for The Love Guru, first by appalled critics and then by a no-show audience. Even the most hard-core SNL/Austin Powers fans could only muster 14 million in ticket sales, making Guru Pitka less of a draw than Speed Racer, until now, the biggest flop of the summer season, which amazingly still topped The Love Guru's opening weekend performance by more than 4.5 million. The bottom line is that The Love Guru didn't exactly come up smelling like patchouli incense and anyone watching a trailer while even the least little bit sober had to have had an inkling that that would be the case.

So though I was looking for a car wreck this past weekend and got one (though it turned out to be a lame comedy concept riding on a motorized floor pillow), what's got me a bit fired up is Mr. Myers' stint on television hyping his potential flame out. I get that stars, particularly star/writers, have to hype their latest projects regardless of quality. Understood. But in all of the sh-t shoveled for The Love Guru, this star pushed the humble, creative-genius-with-a-conscience way past my BS threshold. Seemingly everywhere Myers showed up, there was some sort of self centered vibe seeking out "classic comedian" validation.

One glaringly embarrassing sideshow was TV Land's 2008 awards show that horribly trashed any respectability that's been built since the inception of the awards back in 2003. Last year, to their credit, the TV Land awards bestowed a new honor, the Legacy of Laughter award. 
In Kirstie Alley's introduction of the award's first presentation she said that the new honor was "...one of this show's most significant." She continued, "...(the award) honors a show or performer who has made us laugh beyond the original commitment, they've made us laugh for decades and they won't go away because we won't let them... we know them to be classic and timeless...".

That first award was then presented by Carol Burnett to Lucy Arnaz and Desi Arnaz Jr. in honor of their mother Lucille Ball. The award then came to be known as the Lucille Ball Legacy of Laughter Award. This year the second recipient was named. Surprise, it wasn't Red Skelton, not Jackie Gleason or Bob Hope, not Ernie Kovacs or Milton Berle or Sid Cesar, not even Carl Reiner, Dick Van Dyke, Danny Thomas or Carol Burnett. It was Mike Myers. Take a moment, let that sink in.

Yes, there were ads during the show for The Love Guru and yes, during the "tribute" video montage there were clips from The Love Guru, in spite of the fact that it was yet to be released. The award was presented to Mr. Myers by his film's co-star Justin Timberlake, and after a very brief thank you, the two quickly jumped back to the mic to put in the inevitable plug. Judging from the film's failure to sell tickets, that plug happily fell on deaf and perhaps offended ears.

I'm so floored by the blatant crap slung for hype in this case, that it rises to the level of disgust. The capper though is Mr. Myers himself, appearing on AMC's sometimes terrific movie interview show Shootout. The clip below is just an excerpt of Myers' false show of humility and almost sickeningly righteous "concerned artiste" con. The result of all of this, the clips, the appearance of an award presentation having been bought by a marketing department, the endless ego and the flat out lack of anything funny, suggests to me that Myers has entered into that really desperate and pathetic stage of celebrity... when the adulation has worn away and only the struggling ego is left to keep him company.  Moviedozer Dailies salutes, not you Mr. Myers, but those used-to-be fans who recognize crap when they see it, a con when they're the target and their wisdom to spend their money else where. You yourself say they're the boss. You deserve to have them put you out of work.

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