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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

It Didn't Work

6/10
Author: jonathon_naylor from Manitoba, Canada
28 July 2006

In the weeks leading up to its debut, CNBC invested plenty of time and money to promote DENNIS MILLER as the next great political talk show. The talented Miller, not nearly the far-right fanatic some have painted him, was to bring a fresh, comedic take on the issues of the day.

Trouble is, that's not what we got.

DENNIS MILLER's biggest strength was always "The Varsity," which ate up two segments and featured authors and semi-celebs talking politics. Miller shone as the moderator, squeezing some frank and fascinating discussion out of his guests. It was like POLITICALLY CORRECT reborn, but with a conservative (and likable) host. I would have been happy had this segment taken up the entire show.

Beyond "The Varsity", Miller hosted a lighthearted take on the day's news a la Saturday NIGHT LIVE's "Weekend Update." It was generally a hit-and-miss affair, and the use of a chimp as Miller's sidekick was a complete embarrassment. (I even sent the show an e-mail explaining that chimps haven't been funny since that Clint Eastwood movie, and even then they weren't all that great). The final 10 minutes were reserved for an interview with a newsmaker, be it an athlete or musician. Boring and out of place, these segments offered nothing we hadn't seen before. The host would then conclude with one of his brief trademark rants, though they were rarely as sharp or witty as the Dennis Miller of old once spewed.

Toward the end of this low-rated program's run, its target audience -- politically-minded adults -- were further alienated by the absence of political talk. There were times when "The Varsity" would focus on sports or whatever the hell else Miller could dream up. In one episode, "The Varsity" spent two entire segments talking about women's volleyball! That's not what the target audience was interested in, and it proves that the show really didn't know what it wanted to be.

I like Dennis Miller the performer immensely. It's so refreshing to see a comedian and celebrity who isn't a raving anti-Bush zealot. I'm also disappointed this show didn't work out, but I realize it was for the best. With this experience behind him, perhaps Miller will one day resurface to bring his considerable wit and political savvy to the small screen having a better idea of what works and what doesn't.

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8 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

It made my eyes glaze over.

Author: Lady-of-Rohan from New Zealand
23 June 2004

Weak jokes, lame topics, co-host is a monkey (thank God they got rid of it).

Honestly, what do you WANT me to say? While so many shows want new jokes and fresh ideas, it looks like to me Dennis' show thrives on the jokes that other shows leave on the editor's floor. Jesus as "Jee-Diggy"? Some dude saying he wants to bang his wife? And this is supposed to be side-splitting?! I get 50,000 times more laughter watching paint dry than these lame jokes. Did this guy really think he was going to be #1 in his time slot? Hey Dennis- get a new writer or you can kiss your second season good-bye.

Grade: Mother freaking F.

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5 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

I don't want to get off on a rant here...

Author: turing77 from United States
9 May 2004

Dennis Miller's new CNBC show got off to a shaky start but has evolved nicely. His show is certainly better than anything on Fox or MSNBC. Miller is a very engaging host, very quick-witted and funny, and makes sure he has good guests from across the political spectrum. Miller has always been a political animal, but that he can be both partisan and funny simultaneously is quite a feat. Other comedians such as Al Franken and Janeane Garofalo gave up trying to be funny when they underwent similar conversions, albeit on the liberal side. I think his show will have a good run as long as he wants to do it. Which is a good thing, because it is funny and informative, and provides another forum for people like Christopher Hitchens to proffer their opinions.

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1 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

That's Not So Good, Dennis. But! It's Gettin' Better, Man!

Author: (jakerace690@hotmail.com) from Southern California, USA
27 April 2004

Okay, okay. This program needs WORK! Dennis Miller has made a big political conversion of late from left to right. Which is surprising. The show itself? It's pretty rough around the edges. Dennis' co-host was a CHIMP in the first few episodes. A chimp. Right. Is Dennis LOOKING to be canceled? Seriously, monkeys equals lame television. The funny thing is though that Dennis and the chimp have the same hair color. Do they goto the same stylist? Or just use the same one on the set? I just hope they change the combs and brushes.

But they did try to fix the show up a bit. They added a studio audience who rumor has it they had to PAY to be there. And they ditched the chimpster. Dennis usually just sucks up to the people he agrees with politically and rarely challenges them. Which is fine. He has a point of few and he wants to express it.

I'm not sure how a right wing comedian can do in the world of comedy. Since rightists are a lot like die hard socialists and usually quite humorless. I still feel a bit sorry for Dennis for having starred in Bordello of Blood. If only they'd have had a better script. And a better title. And lost the outdated televangelist subplot. I guess starting in a bomb like that of Wagnerian proportions can mess with anyone's mind. Maybe a bit of bitterness toward the leftist Hollywood establishment and his bad career choices added to his political conversion? Along with the obvious American terrorist attacks in the early 21st century. We shall see though if the new rough and tough Dennis can pull off making this program a success, baby.

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2 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Flawed Brilliance!

Author: kevshin (kevshin@hotmail.com) from London, England
13 July 2004

If I was to change one thing about the show, I would ditch the chimp.

This show is a rarity! It is both funny and thought provoking. I like the fact that the one-hour format gives the show enough space to develop. The highlight (in my mind) is the panel bit where 3 guests discuss current political stories from different points of view. You have to give Dennis credit as he is quite prepared for the guests to get in a good gag and give a spin on a topic that doesn't agree with Miller's point of view.

It's such a brave show.

Keep up the great work Mr Miller!

:)

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