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Archive for Wednesday, December 8, 2010

President Barack Obama joins politicians on cable TV via ‘Mythbusters’

December 8, 2010

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President Barack Obama makes a cameo appearance on “Mythbusters” (8 p.m., Discovery) tonight. Hosts Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage visit the president in the White House, where he praises the show for its entertaining celebration of science and experimentation and asks the guys to revisit a project from the show’s past.

President Obama doesn’t think they tried hard enough to prove or disprove the legend of the ancient Greek scientist Archimedes, who is said to have instructed troops to set fire to an invading Roman fleet using only mirrors and the reflected rays of the sun. Adam and Jamie return to the project, equipped with 500 mirrors and an “army” of 500 high-school students eager to reflect new light on the old story.

By appearing on “Mythbusters,” the president reaffirms his support for science education but walks a rather fine line. Is he right in reaching out to people via a fractured cable audience? Or is he demeaning the majesty of the office on a goofy show where stuff often gets blown up?

During a recent “60 Minutes” interview, President Obama argued that appearances on cable shows, or morning shows like “The View,” were required to reach the folks who no longer watch more traditional outlets (like “60 Minutes”).

Presidential outreach has often brought mixed reviews. Jimmy Carter once fielded odd questions on a radio talk show. Bill Clinton was asked about less-than-dignified matters by an MTV correspondent and once sat down on VH1 to discuss his record collection and musical influences.

If cable still seems a strange place for a sitting president, it has certainly become an outlet where people launch their presidential campaigns. Ross Perot began his 1992 bid on “The Larry King Show.” Pat Buchanan used his “Crossfire” perch to unleash insurgent primary campaigns in 1992 and 1996.

Tonight’s other highlights

• Eight groups contend on “The Sing-Off” (7 p.m., NBC).

• Chance turns to an unlikely savior on “Human Target” (7 p.m., Fox).

• Frankie’s parents (Marsha Mason and Jerry Van Dyke) arrive for the holidays on “The Middle” (7 p.m., ABC).

• School-dance jitters on “Modern Family” (8 p.m., ABC).

• The guys count down viewers’ favorite clips from the past season and anticipate the next on “The Fabulous Beekman Boys Holiday Special” (8 p.m., Planet Green).

• “Marijuana USA” (8 p.m., CNBC) examines an enormous underground marketplace.

• The 1988 documentary “Imagine: John Lennon” (8 p.m., BBC America) recalls the singer-songwriter on the 30th anniversary of his murder.

• A gunrunner seeks counsel on “The Defenders” (9 p.m., CBS).

• A freed suspect becomes an asset on “Law & Order: SVU” (9 p.m., NBC).

• A psychic seems to know too much on “The Whole Truth” (9 p.m., ABC).

• Police-academy high jinks on “Psych” (9 p.m., USA).

Comments

CorkyHundley 4 years ago

Mybusters is perfect for the Dude. His Palin moment by siding with Reagan-esk Supply side economics should be examined as a myth or just Dude, smoke and mirroring wishy-washy Independents.

Flap Doodle 4 years ago

Did Kari, Grant & Torey go on a search for Dear Leader's political integrity?

Stuart Evans 4 years ago

Lets hope he acts a little more presidential than he did on his last couple of airings... but somehow I think he'll appear very weak again.

monkeyhawk 4 years ago

"Or is he demeaning the majesty of the office on a goofy show where stuff often gets blown up?"

Yes.

"During a recent “60 Minutes” interview, President Obama argued that appearances on cable shows, or morning shows like “The View,” were required to reach the folks who no longer watch more traditional outlets (like “60 Minutes”)."

Of course, if he wanted to reach an adult audience, Fox News consistently has the highest ratings. But, he won't be able to brainwash the viewers quite as easily as he can with The View group. He really needs to go on Sesame Street where they would probably still sing that "mmm mmm mmm" song to him.

monkeyhawk 4 years ago

What really occurs to me is that the prez just wants to live out all his fantasies before it is "build a library to me" time. He always wanted to see the Festival of Lights, to hug Oprah, to ride in a big private jet (a lot), to bow to foreigners he felt were important enough, to own car companies and talk mean about and to the republicans.

mom_of_three 4 years ago

oh, tom, you birther you. That myth has already been busted - MULTIPLE times.

Flap Doodle 4 years ago

Based on how erratic Dear Leader looked in his presser yesterday, let us hope Hillary has told the Joint Chiefs to let her know if they get any unusual commands from the White House.

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