Glenn Beck and Charlie Sheen: Too weird to live, too rare to die

Categories: Popular Culture

glenn beck whaddaya.jpg
Dying is for fools, amateurs.
Somewhere in the last couple of years, so gradually it was hard to notice at first, Glenn Beck went from annoying and somewhat menacing to hilarious. While watching Bill O'Reilly remains basically like watching a talk show with the evil trees from The Wizard of Oz except the trees have political opinions are are more dour and condescending, and Rush Limbaugh's radio show is both in content and in timbre the equivalent of a two-hour fart, Beck seemed to start taking a certain insane glee in his increasingly weird ideas -- kind of like a man perpetually on the verge of total emotional collapse. And there's something riveting about that. For what it's worth -- because it's not exactly saying a lot -- I might just miss Beck's show more than I miss Two and a Half Men.

Because Charlie Sheen may think he brought the magic to Two and a Half Men, but there was really nothing magical about that show except its inexplicably bloated ratings -- it was a 22-minute, three-camera sitcom with a laugh track, for chrissakes. Nothing could possibly be less magical. The true magic came when Sheen shook off the collar of having to be an actor and became, in effect, a pundit with no cause to get behind but the spectacle of his own unraveling. The magic was probably there all along, if the perfunctorily suppressed wife-beating and cocaine-binging is any retrospective indication, but nobody knew it until Sheen broke free.

Beck's show, on the other hand, has always been a platform for Beck to just go ahead and be Beck -- the only thing ever restraining Beck was his own self-restraint. And he has never had a whole lot of it. Even in the days when he was the de facto head of the nation's rootin'est, tootin'est flag-waving toothless ol' coots (which he's since gotten too crazy even for those guys), there were occasional hints of the insanity showing through. How about this quote, from 2005: "You know it took me about a year to start hating the 9-11 victims' families? Took me about a year."

But wait, it gets even better! "I don't hate all of them. Probably about ten of them. And when I see a 9-11 victim family on television or whatever, I'm just like, 'Oh shut up!' I'm so sick of them because they're always complaining."

In more recent times, much was made about Beck's failure to spell oligarchy correctly while he was making a key point about something that involved the terms "Obama," "Left Internationalist" and "Hidden Agenda" haphazardly assembled into some sort of acronym-based mnemonic device, but what was even crazier was that the evidence for the conspiracy he was explaining hinged on an acronym he made up. It was all down or possibly uphill from there, depending on your point of view, because it hasn't gotten any less surreal. I urge you to watch two minutes of this clip from an episode of Beck's show that ran last week. It is nuts:

Now, compare that to an excerpt from Charlie Sheen's now-iconic interview with an awesomely humorless Andrea Canning, which, come to think about it, is kind of like watching Bill O'Reilly interview Beck anymore:

We can conclude, I think, that both of these men are completely off the fucking chain, and though they have both lost their respective jobs as a result, Charlie Sheen has been canny enough to turn his implosion into, uh, more magic with the "Violent Torpedo of Truth/Defeat is Not an Option" tour (coming to Denver April 28), which basically just puts his implosion onstage to see what happens; the wildly disparate results it's achieved -- booed offstage in Detroit, given a standing ovation in Cleveland -- seem weirdly appropriate to the source material.

It isn't entirely unlikely that Beck will try the same approach. So get this man a chalkboard, already -- let's take off the gloves and see those fire-breathing fists.

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19 comments
sandiegojoey
sandiegojoey

It's about time! I can understand why Hannity, Rush, and O'reilly have an audience, they're intelligent and entertaining. But Beck?! This guy doesn't have a single redeeming quality to explain his popularity. He's at best an uneducated alarmist sociopath who suffers from delusions of grandeur. I'm shocked it took this long for people to see what I saw the first week of listening to his crazy diatribes, none of which were even slightly entertaining. If someone wants to do crazy, then at least do it along the lines of Michael Savage and bring some intellect.

Animal1
Animal1

Did you forget Keith Olbermann or is that a left wing in your hand? Bloated ratings? Well, you will not ever have to worry about that problem. Keep your day job.

Mimi
Mimi

Glenn Beck has done a tremendous service for America by exposing the corruption and connections of those who wish to "fundamentally change" our country into something unrecognizable. If you ever watched his show then you know that he ALWAYS says to do your own homework and to verify the information he is giving and not blindly accept it. I thank God for Glenn Beck. Those who mock him HAVE NOT TAKEN THE TIME to research what he is saying. They're lazy and find it easier to just dismiss him.

niki1928
niki1928

Glenn Beck you are a PATRIOT.

Someone
Someone

Insanity is always entertaining, from a safe distance away of course. Once in a while I would enjoy watching Beck clown around on Fox, I have to admit. But similarly to a porn movie, he failed to grab my attention for much more than 5 minutes. But there's always Rush for those occasional moments one needs to watch a good circus clown act!

Tvasura
Tvasura

beck is the only real thing a round

Tvasura
Tvasura

i think your stupid.

Jones Cgood
Jones Cgood

What part of Beck's presentation do you feel is "nuts"? You failed to make your point. You failed quite miserably.

Avatar Jack
Avatar Jack

Let’s hope this “transition” is of the smooth, “wean me off the narcotics with daily methadone” variety. After 27 months of blind devotion to our forward-thinking, conspiracy unearthing Pied Piper, what are we rats to do once the rug is abruptly yanked from below?

http://scallywagandvagabond.co...

R Menear
R Menear

The comedy show of Glenn Beck will not be missed. The clip you provided just proves why he should go. His mention of the heroes of the Alamo (Sam Booey?), unless he was thinking of his drinking days (Drambuie), shows how his uneducated ramblings have lowered his ratings and left the audience wondering where their lives went while he invaded the airwaves for too long. Good bye. NEXT!

MightyClong
MightyClong

YAWN. Tired, retreaded, left-wing insults & contextually-lacking myopia.

trapped
trapped

Thank you. I would make this comparison between the two and people thought I was CRAZY. It is a bit sad, but I can not look away.

Alexmr293
Alexmr293

Glenn would go alittle to right sometimes but have you listened to the left you have now lost the balance for people to make a decision remember the truth is somewhere in-between Both sides as long as you have both sides !

NadePaulKuciGravMcKi
NadePaulKuciGravMcKi

Glenn Beck vs AIPAC's Federal Reserve and the controlled media FNC corporate "family" Covering up the truth about 9/11 is considered a key security issue for Israel.

sandiegojoey
sandiegojoey

Anyone who talks for six hours a day is going to get a few things right. He spent a ton of money on assistants to fill his tiny brain full of information. The problem is that he is insane and doesn't have the education or IQ necessary to process the information. He IS the new Charlie Sheen, it's the perfect comparison!

Shonnin Kuroji
Shonnin Kuroji

The only problem is...Mr Beck has vary, vary rarely missed a prediction. He has always been clear about his own Christian viewpoint, but has also pointed out that you don't have to believe in "the scriptures" or biblical prophecy because enough people in places of power do believe enough to make it happen. Simply put I don't believe in the "end times" but I do believe in the self fulfilling prophecy, I guess that makes me insane like Beck. I just think it is sad that the liberals and radicals are powerful enough to assassinate the character of anyone that doesn't follow their party line.

Jef Otte
Jef Otte

I think you're stupid, is how that should be spelled.

sandiegojoey
sandiegojoey

I'd suggest going on YouTube and watching the ramblings of actual insane people, there are plenty of clinical video's, and then you'll understand.

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