Minister of Science and Chief Protector of the Faith

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Janeane Garofalo: Speaking Truth To Power

Bill Maher/"Real Time" - Sept. 21, 2007
JG Calls Bill Maher On Israeli Bias
Garofalo to O'Reilly: "Kiss my Fat Ass"
JG on Petraeus
JG: "Powell Could Have Changed History"
Real Time's Overtime 9-21-07
Bill Maher 09-21-2007 1 of 6 [ 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 ]
The Disquisition
The Disquisition 1 [ 2, 3, 4 ]
Janeane the Pundit
The Power of the Puppy
JG Drubs Fox News' Brian Kilmeade (Feb. 2003)
Bill O'Reilly Interviews JG (March 2003)
MSNBC: "Bush or Hussein?" (Feb. 2003)
JG/Sander Hicks Interview
"Win without War" Spot

Did anybody see "Real Time" with Bill Maher week? If you missed it, you can watch entire episode here: [ 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 ] The segment included Rob Thomas, Salman Rushdie, and Janeane Garofalo. Janeane had a more direct message than I have seen on television in a long time. She spoke with conviction, candor and most importantly with the voice of someone who has done their homework.

I am not going to bother writing a synopsis of what she said, you should watch the video to see her in action. (And before HBO yanks it off YouTube.) She must be doing something right, because the right wingers are already pretending to be mortified by her words. This is what the wingnuts are saying:

"Stop Enabling Janeane Garofalo!", "There is no way that woman is completely straight", Garofalo Backs Rather, Declares Petraeus 'Dishonest...He Is Betraying Us', Janeane Garofalo Praises 'Brave' Dems Who Condemned Petraeus, etc.

This is part of what all of the fuss is about:

Janeane Garofalo: "The CBS thing, Dan Rather's lawsuit. I have no doubt that there were executives at CBS that folded under right wing coercion and did it very readily, you know, fired him, or covered up the truth that the National Guard did provide preferential treatment to George Bush Junior. And it's amazing how the right wing has done it in this country and it doesn't seem like it's a democracy at all when you let that happen."

Salman Rushdie: "What I think is strange is it's like the Republicans, in order to not talk about the war, you know, any excuse to not discuss the actual war means that you attack people who talk about the war in ways they don't like. So you talk about talking about the war instead of talking about the war. So you don't like Dan Rather because of the way he talks about the war, you don't MoveOn because of the way they talk about the war."

Bill Maher: "They've made it a whole referendum on this General Petraeus."

Garofalo: "And the thing is it's beside the point. And the mainstream media helps them out enormously. First of all, General Petraeus has been dishonest. That is sort of the role of a soldier like that, they, just like General Westmoreland and the 5 o'clock reports in Vietnam. Of course they are dishonest. That's what they do. And the thing is is to pretend that it's that has the problem, and that the mainstream media allows that nonsense to continue. Yet, he is betraying us and I don't know why there aren't more brave Democrats who will say, 'yeah, he is.'"

Also, it looks like Janeane is going to join the cast of "24". My first reaction was, "Nooooo! Don't do it, Janeane!" That stupid-ass show has done more to drive fear in this country than Bill O'Reilly.

I lost interest in the show back when Jack Baur's daughter got kidnapped for the third time in the first season. (3 times in 24 hours, scriptwise!) I think that all of the characters on that show need to take a Rosarum and get a good night's sleep after being up all night. No wonder they are all on edge!

So I was not really happy when I found out that Janeane was going to join in on Jack Baur's pajama party, but then I started reading about the upcoming season and Janeane role in it, and look what the right wing is saying about it:

"Are the producers of 24 trying to draw in a broader audience? Like the extreme loony left? They aren’t going to like 24 anyway cause they use guns (gasp!) and fight bad guys on the show. They even let the bad guys be muslim (so politically incorrect of them!) Not to mention, I don’t think even the looney left watch Janeane Garofalo in anything. Does she even have an audience? I know I can’t stand to watch her in anything. I’d rather get my teeth drilled."

Yay! Janeane will usher in a new reign of rainbow peace and moonbeam love to the show! Watch out Jack, Janeane is going to set you straight about a thing or two.

Jon Stewart, Part 1 of 3 (March 1997) [ 2, 3 ]
Conan O'Brien (July 2007) "puppy"
Ain't It Cool News (June 2007) "Ratatouille"
Craig Kilborn (Jun 2007)
JG at Premiere Of "Ratatouille" (June 2007)
Conan O'Brien (June 1999) "Mystery Men"
Craig Kilborn (May 1997)
Craig Kilborn (Oct 1997)
Dennis Miller (Mar 1996)
"Bye Bye Love" (Aug 1994)
Conan O'Brien (Nov 1994)
David Letterman (Oct 1994)
Dennis Miller (1992)
Jiminy Glick
Behind-the-Scenes - "Ratatouille"
Air America (2004)

I have had a crush on Janeane Garofalo ever since I first saw her play Vicky in "Reality Bites". ("The free clinic AIDS test: the right of passage for our generation!")

Janeane has never actually been in a really good movie. She is not the best stand up comedian in the world. (In April 2004, she was selected as #99 on Comedy Central's list of the 100 greatest stand ups of all time. wikipedia) She failed miserably when she was on "Saturday Night Live". (Probably because the cast plays a lot reindeer games, and Janeane never was the "get along and play nice type.") She can actually be kind of annoying when she talks sometimes. So what is it about Janeane Garofalo that makes her so interesting?

It's because she is intelligent, witty, and she says what it is on her mind. She does not say things that seem contrived or said to create a certain "effect." When she talks there is no doubt that she is saying exactly what she is thinking. Her candor is refreshing.

If you were at a party with 20 supermodels and Janeane Garofalo, she would still be the most interesting person to be with at the party. She would probably also complain about the hors’dourves, smoke like a chimney and drive every Republican out of the room.

I have made the mistake of telling people that I really like Janeane. Usually my remarks are met with negative glances and the inevitable "Oh, Really?" Even many Democrats don't like her, they feel that she is too left wing and too outspoken. I don't understand this. How can a person not love a woman that stood up to Bill O'Reilly and FOX News? And yet it is often the courageous things that she has done that the public dislikes, and have gotten her in trouble with people like television executives.

You know another reason to love Janeane Garofalo? She reads comic books! She said so on "Real Time" with Bill Maher. (OK, she calls them "graphic novels" like a poser, but who cares?)

The Disquisition
The Disquisition "Corporate Facists"
The Disquisition "Luddite"
The Disquisition "Angry Narcissist"
The Disquisition "Never Laugh Again"
Stand Up Comedy
Janeane Garofalo stand up 1 (1992)
Janeane Garofalo stand up 2 (1992)
Janeane Garofalo on HBO's "Rome"
Stand Up JG "God's plan"
Stand up Bumbershoot 2007
HG on Comix Remix
Spots & Promos
Janeane Garofalo discuses Green Day
Janeane Garofalo - Win without War
Janeane Garofalo on My Damn Channel
music video Superchunk - Watery Hands
Air America Radio XM Commercial
Old Comedy Central Promos

When I was searching for Janeane Gaofalo clips on YouTube, I was disappointed that I couldn't find some of the early 30 second spots that she did for Comedy Central, but I was delighted to find four clips that she did for the Independent film Channel. The IFC has a show called "The Henry Rollins Show" [ 2 ], and she has done a series of spots called The Disquisition. [ 1, 2, 3, 4 ] I thought these clips were just great when I watched them!

Janeane is alone in the clips, and speaking as more of a vlogger. It is very different than when you see her interviewed, and she is responding to questions from a television host. You also get to see the inside of her apartment.

I think that she genuinely does not realize how pretentious and stuck up she sounds when she says that she does not have a computer or email. I have actually dated a couple of girls that were sort of like Janeane. Short, very intelligent, self-conscious yet pretentious, annoying yet intriguing, completely oblivious at times that they have just said something really haughty and inappropriate, and there is nothing you can say to explain it to them that they will ever understand.

Movies & TV
Romy & Michele's High School Reunion" (1997)
Beer, Beer, Beer (Romy & Michele's)
"The Larry Sanders Show" clip 1 of 2 [ 2 ]
"The Larry Sanders Show" clip 1 of 3 [ 2, 3 ]
"The Matchmaker" - Clip 1 of 3 [ 2, 3 ]
Nadine in Dateland
Reality Bites trailer (1994)
"Reality Bites" - My Sharona
"Reality Bites" - Sammy Comes Out
"Search For John Gissing" (2002) Trailer
"Search For John Gissing" - 1 of 3 [ 2, 3 ]
SNL Skit
"The truth About Cats & Dogs" (Trailer)
"The West Wing"
"Wet Hot American Summer" Clip 1
"Wet Hot American Summer" Clip 2

I think my favorite Janenae Garofalo film was "The truth About Cats & Dogs" and not only because it is a retelling of the great classic "Cyrano de Bergerac." It is always refreshing to see a film where the lead character is a woman, and it even more refreshing when the lead character is not some willowy, overpaid supermodel. I am sure that in real life Janeane is very much like the character in this film, quirky and annoying, delightful and intelligent, self-conscious yet pretentious.

That said, "The Truth About Cats and Dogs" was not really a very good movie. None of Janeane's films are. She is also not a "genius" as an actress. She is just one of the many Hollywood actors and actresses that just sort of plays themself.

On the other hand, she can still bring a lot to a role. I think that she was the funniest thing in the film, "Romy & Michele's High School Reunion". The same could be said of her role in "The Larry Sanders Show".

Some right winger made this "Beer, Beer, Beer" video, which is a clip from "Romy & Michele's High School Reunion" played endlessly in a loop. It is meant to be insulting to Janeane, but I actually just it found endearing.

~ Click on an icon to open the larger image ~

I did not have to go Googling for pictures of Janeane to use in this post, because I already have a zillion of them on my hard drive. My favorite is this picture of her with the huge latte. She is filled with foamy Garofalo goodness!


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At Tue Sep 25, 09:35:00 AM, Anonymous mwb said...

How can you forget Mystery Men with Janeane and the enchanted bowling ball!

Janeane Garofalo is my secret celebrity crush.

I kind of like Truth about Cats and Dogs - as bad as it is - but mostly I fast forward through the non-Janeane scenes.

Plus it leads to a long standing debate between an old friend of mine and myself about me have a genetic defect.

After seeing Cats & Dogs, I said you put Janeane and Uma in a room together at a party and I'm all about Janeane - way cuter and cooler! (No offense Uma.)

To which my friend said, "You're missing a chromosome aren't you?

At Tue Sep 25, 09:48:00 AM, Blogger Jon the Intergalactic Gladiator said...

Janenae Garofalo is smart and hot, she's smot.

I first started noticing her in SNL and I thought she was funny, but you're right it wasn't really the best fit. She did a lot of grumpy mod chicks. Kind of like Chris Rock doing mostly angry black men.

At Tue Sep 25, 11:39:00 AM, Blogger Evil Spock said...

She was good in the Ben Stiller show too!

I've liked Ms. Garofalo for a long time, and I would argue that Reality Bites was a very excellent movie that helped shape who I'd become during the 90's and now. Singles was really influential too.

At Tue Sep 25, 01:16:00 PM, Blogger Jess Wundrun said...

Janeane has always been my choice for which celebrity would you most want to hang out in a bar with.

Like an enormo geek I simulcasted her first night on Air America and just sat on the couch and listened.

But I guess my geeklike fascination has nothing on yours!

At Tue Sep 25, 02:07:00 PM, Blogger spocko said...

Dr. Z! I suppose you put this up in anticipation of her birthday.

Unlike some human males I have no desire to date her, however she does have a truly wonderful mind. And too would rather talk to her than a plethora of people.

And if we go back to pre-2003 we know that she was absolutely right about the war. Now why isn't SHE brought out to talk instead of those very serious people who were WRONG about the war?

At Tue Sep 25, 07:25:00 PM, Blogger genexs said...

I loved her in "The Minus Man", an odd serial killer movie that nobody seemed to like but me. Her role is small, but she absolutely nails the character of a nerdy lovelorn woman trapped in a small town. Also great is Owen Wilson in the lead as the killer. I wish he had stuck to more serious stuff like this, than getting sucked into the Hollywood goofball paint-by-numbers crap that seems to have nearly driven him to suicide.

At Tue Sep 25, 08:26:00 PM, Blogger FranIAm said...

She was GREAT on Real Time.

I liked your analysis of her luddite self Dr.

Anyway- great post. And BTW even if it wasn't a great movie, I am a total sucker for the Truth About Cats and Dogs.

At Wed Sep 26, 07:13:00 AM, Blogger pissed off patricia said...

I don't get HBO because I refuse to give the cable com. one more dime than I have to. Janenae is best when she just speaks from her heart. I heart her too.

At Wed Sep 26, 11:51:00 AM, Blogger Liberality said...

Well now I like you just a little bit more than before. you can't be all bad if you prefer JG over other actresses.

At Wed Sep 26, 10:42:00 PM, Anonymous Omnipotent Poobah said...

Everyone needs a burr under the saddle from time to time. Luckily, she is that burr.

At Thu Sep 27, 12:14:00 AM, Blogger BAC said...

Saw it ... loved it ... love her ...


At Thu Sep 27, 12:30:00 AM, Blogger BAC said...

... one more thing. In 2004 I was able to get my boss invited to speak at the March for Women's Lives ... the march that brought 1.2 million people to DC. He was on the morning stage, which meant he spoke before the actual "march."

The organizers we clearly not prepared for the crush of people at the event, so as we headed to the front line for the step off, I was doing my best (as a former NOW staffer) to help keep everyone calm.

As it turned out Janeane was standing right in front of us! She is not very tall, and my boss (who is fairly tall) and I were concerned that she might get trampled by the crowd.

We managed to hold the crowd back, and I instructed her on how to get to the very front of the line as the march was taking off.

When the front line of marchers finally arrived at the afternoon stage site, she came over to thank me for looking out for her. I was, of course, thrilled!


At Thu Sep 27, 07:46:00 AM, Blogger Dr. Zaius said...

MWB: I really liked "Mystery Men", but I don't think that it was an especially good for her. Her part was not very big. I thought that Eddie Izzard as the disco guy was hilarious! I am guilty of the non-Janeane scene fast forward maneuver also. I have had similar conversations about Janeane with people as you describe. I don't know why so many people dislike her.

Jon the Intergalactic Gladiator: Grumpy mod chicks? Yes, that sounds like Janeane. She's so smot!

Evil Spock: You know, I have never seen the Ben Stiller Show. I keep meaning to buy the DVD, just to watch Janeane. Reality Bites was a great movie!

Jess Wundrun: Hmm... So you say that I am the geekier of the two of us? That's it, Jess! I challenge you to a dual! Pocket calculators at dawn! Bring your pocket protector and square root key, you gunky.

Spocko: Jeepers! I went and looked it up: September 28, 1964! It's tomorrow! Thanks for the tip. I am glad that you don't want to date her, that leaves the field wide open for me!

Genexs: I haven't seen "The Minus Man" yet, I have heard it was good. My sister is a big fan of Owen Wilson. I am sure that she is crushed by the recent news.

FranIAm: I love "Truth About Cats and Dogs"! I watch it every time it comes on. I hate the phone sex scene, it seems so contrived.

Pissed Off Patricia: Damn the cable company! Contact your Local Franchise Authority and give them heck!

Liberality: This is just my opinion, but as an actress, I don't think she is the best by far. As crush, though, she's huge. She just seems genuine and intelligent.

Omnipotent Poobah: Saddle up! There is a new sheriff in town, and her initials are J.G.

BAC: :o)

BAC: You actually got to meet her! That's great! I am envious, but I am also grateful that you saved he from getting trampled by the maddening throng. I have heard that she is very short. You can tell when you see her in the movies. They can only do camera tricks to hide her height some of the time. She is probably only little bit taller than Tom Cruise! I am very glad that you decided to leave this second message and tell me that story. I think that's great!

At Thu Sep 27, 11:23:00 AM, Blogger Johnny Yen said...

Great post. I love Janeane Garofalo too. I liked The Truth About Cats and Dogs, and recognized it for the Cyrano know-off, but I think Janeane is much hotter than Uma Thurman.

At Fri Sep 28, 03:08:00 PM, Blogger Brando said...

She is one of those people who is best in a talk show format. When she can just kick back and discuss issues and be funny.

Also, I am laughing at the 24 comment from the conservative site. I know lots of liberals (myself) included who have been big fans of the show. I didn't stop watching it because they use guns, I stopped watching when I realized most of the problems would be eliminated if CTU had a decent HR screening process.

At Sat Sep 29, 01:13:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Zaius, thanks for the love. I love her, too. - r -

At Sat Sep 29, 09:28:00 AM, Blogger Dr. Zaius said...

Johnny Yen: And she is hotter not only because of her looks, but because she is a more interesting person.

Brando: Yes, 24 has some real problems containing the old "Suspension of Disbelief" Department.

Anonymous: :o) The mysterious "- r -" has spoken!

At Sat Sep 29, 07:03:00 PM, Blogger LonewackoDotCom said...

If she wasn't cute (in the distant past) no one would care (except perhaps the Truthers.) There's only a very slight possibility that she's going to get the help she needs, and as time wears on she's just going to get more bitter, hate-filled, and shrill.


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