Celebritology Live

Mar 15, 2012

Join Celebritology blogger Jen Chaney to gab about the latest celebrity gossip and pop culture news making waves across the Web.

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Let's not even suck up time with an intro. Diving right in to your questions and comments.

How clever was Michelle Obama to have George Clooney seated next to her at last night's WH dinner? (Barack, on the other side of her, ain't half shabby, either).

Hey, if I was the First Lady, I'd do the same thing.

But no love for Venus Flytrap? Jen, I beg you to reconsider! Tim Reid could slam-dunk Brad, Angie and all the kids.

Oh, I love Venus Flytrap. I dare say that you will find few individuals who are stronger advocates for "WKRP in Cincinnati" than I am.

But Brad Pitt? I mean, I don't see how Tim Reid can win. Maybe he'll surprise me...

(By the way, if none of this is making sense to you, read this.)

Can you believe the powers that be had the audacity to tell me "Widmore" was not an acceptable word? The nerve. Hmmph.

So what you're saying is that Words With Friends didn't watch "Lost"? If so, then I want nothing to do with it.

See if it accepts the word Dharma.

Oh, and speaking of "Lost," I was in the midst of writing a missive about the "Mad Men"/"Lost" competition that happened yesterday on Vulture. I hit the pause button on it to come and chat with you all but it will go out after we're done here. See if you can guess which show I thought deserved to win.

Jen, have you looked at the seating chart for last night's White House dinner? Sergeant Brody is sitting RIGHT ACROSS THE TABLE from the President! How did this security breach happen? Does no one listen to Claire Danes????

I guarantee you that somewhere on the perimeter of that event, Claire Danes was running around in a burka with a panic-stricken look on her face, yelling into a cell phone.

"It's happening right now, Saul! I am not CRAZY!"

Oh, my money would be on Dr. Johnny Fever, because he goes so much higher ; - )

Also, don't rule out Herb Tarlec. He's quite the salesman.

Or The Big Guy, Mr. Carlson. That guy authorized the tossing of live turkeys from a helicopter. He's as unpredictable as it gets.

sit next to Idris?

Don't know. That's actually a tough call, now that you mention it: which hot guy should I sit next to?

Clooney is more enmeshed in the political system and a bigger star. So that probably tipped the scales.

If I looked that good when I was puffy or bloated I'd be happy as a lark. Ashley looks beautiful, puffy or not-puffy. It's gotta be hard. People are so mean.

In case anyone missed Sarah's post on this subject, Judd has been taking steroids due to a sinus infection. Hence, the swelling.

She does still look good, if noticably more swollen. (Having taken steroids once due to sun poisoning, I can attest to how that happens.) I guess people looked at her and just assumed she had some injections.

Internet -- so judgmental.

Why did you leave out Kansas alum Jason Sudeikis? We know that he can play basketball because that's his signature clip in the SNL opening sequence? And KU is going all the way.

If memory serves, I left out the Kansas game because I couldn't come up with a Detroit alum to include. At least I think that was why.

After Shane & Randall's transformations revealed that everyone is already infected and death is just a catalyst for the change, all I could think of were those young guys from season 1 protecting the retirement home. I mean, think of the death rate for the elderly, especially with the stress of living in a walker-pocalypse. Those guys would have no idea that all those sweet old folks they were barricading themselves in with the very people that would start chomping on them! They were trying to do something nice and probably wound up getting gnawed at by their own grandma. It bummed me out to think about. Oh well, on the upside a lot of them probably had dentures anyway, so how much damage could with just their gums, right?

The fact that everyone is infected just made the show more interesting for me. "Walking Dead" desperately needed a twist to take it in a new narrative direction and that was it.

That nursing home scenario is horrifying.

The other thing I wondered: Rick was in a coma when the whole infection thing happened. So does that mean that he isn't infected? Is he immune somehow?

Also, how bleak can you get? Even if you try to commit suicide, you can't completely escape because then you have all those zombie responsibilities to deal with.

Dave Letterman. "FLOTUS, Idris. Idris, FLOTUS."

Nice. I'm sorry, I still loved Letterman as an Oscar host.


Any dancing last night at the WH dinner? Or maybe the Obama aren't into dancing? Nothing will top the pix of John Travolta dancing with Princess Diana 25 years ago.

I was not there, but I don't believe there was dancing at the dinner.

Now, at the top-secret, VIP after-party, I am pretty sure a few people did the "Humpty Dance"...


My 8-y-o and I are hooked on WKRP! I was her age when it was new and loved it. Now I love it all over again. And Venus is still the snazziest dresser of all time.

That is awesome.

I'm telling you, as '70s/'80s sitcoms go, that one holds up pretty well. Clearly the music and clothes are *way* retro, but the comedy is pretty timeless.

That's why the Obamas need to do away with this practice of sitting next to each other. George Clooney on one side, Idris Elba on the other, Brody across the table - that's a good night.

Yes, I don't think the First Lady could bump her husband so Elba could be on her other side.

I don't know much about White House protocol, but I am pretty sure that violates it.

I adore Clooney and up until this morning thought he could do no wrong. Then I see the pics from the State Dinner. He couldn't take the time to shave? Sheesh.

I will say the same thing I said about Bradley Cooper's Oscar mustache -- maybe it's for a role?

I don't mind a scruffy Clooney myself. Of course, I am sure he feels better now, knowing that I approve.

Lots of folks in the music industry have passed lately. Can you imagine the jam session in heaven right now? Although not sure how the Disney guy fits in.

Yes, Davy Jones and Whitney Houston on vocals, the Doobie Brothers guy on drums ... maybe Robert Sherman can write some originals, when they're not taking turns playing their greatest hits?

You sure they didn't do The Dougie?

That, too. I just like the idea of Sgt. Brody mouthing the words: "Step off, I'm doin' the Hump!"

Or Lord and Lady Grantham rapping, "I use a word that don't mean nothin', like looptid." I would pay a lot of money to watch the Granthams say looptid.

It has almost no consequence. If everyone is infected, but it only matters after you're dead, then it doesn't appear to have any effect on your life. Really, all it means is that, after you're dead (or if you decide to commit suicide), someone has to give you a headshot. Aside from the shock of knowing and the logistics of handling their dead, it shouldn't change Rick's group's way of life at all. (Though I'll admit, the nursing home thing hadn't occurred to me, and that really would suck.)

I think it adds a new level of fear to the situation. It's one thing to be afraid of dying, and another to be afraid of dying because you know it's going to turn you into a grostesque monster who might eat your own best friend's brains.

It also takes away from the us vs. them mentality that has pervaded the survivors' approach. There is no "they are the zombies" notion anymore. You're all in it together. I'm not sure yet what that does to the narrative, but I think it absolutely changes one's attitude toward the walkers. Not that it stops you from popping one, or many, in the head if needed, but emotionally, it changes things.

I thought Noam Chomsky said that.

Oh, that's right. Noam Chomsky and the Digital Underground -- the key thing they share in common.

Is anyone from the Post covering this year's SXSW?

Chris Richards is covering the music side of things. In fact, I believe a SxSW piece of his will appear in this very newspaper and on this very Web site -- imagine that! -- within the next 24 hours.

LOVE, love, love this show. It's available for viewing on Hulu, but such a shame that all the music has been replaced--the soundtrack was such an integral part of that show. Do you know if it will ever be released with the original soundtrack?

I doubt very seriously that we'll be able to see it again with the original music, unless you happened to record the episodes when they originally aired with a super-old VCR.

It's too hard to get all the music rights. If they didn't do it for the DVD, it's probably not going to happen.

I agree that not having the real music diminishes the experience, but I still think the old episodes are worth watching.

Maybe that's the question we should ask: Which was better, "Mad Men" or "WKRP in Cincinnati"?

The "Newsflesh" trilogy by Mira Grant has this in it. Every single person on the planet is going to become a zombie after death. The consequences of this in the books are staggeringly large. I don't watch "Walking Dead," but it sounds reasonable to me to go there, plotwise.

I haven't read that series but it sounds really interesting.

One obvious macro-consequence is the overpopulation factor. If no one really dies, at least initially, that seems like a problem.

Related question: can zombies reproduce? I mean, I don't see how they can have sex, really, what with their limbs falling off and such. I'm just spitballin' here.

This may be more of a Reliable Source question, but have you heard anything about how long George will be in town and - more importantly - where? There's a demonstation scheduled for Friday morning outside the Sudanese Embassy, but do we know for sure whether or not he'll be there? And is it wrong if I attend just to see him? :)

I'm afraid I am not sure how long Clooney will be here. It wasn't clear that he would attend last night's dinner until earlier this week, so it's possible he could be at the demonstration.

Sorry I don't have more info on this one -- these celebs in Washington stories often do fall into Reliable Source territory so I often don't dig into deeply on them so we don't overlap.

Jen, after Paradis denied rumors of a break-up, rumors of their relationship's demise also appear to have vanished. What's going on, do you think?

Maybe they reconciled. Or maybe they're just trying to shut down press inquiries on that subject so Depp can focus on promoting "Dark Shadows."

The trailer for that movie premiered today on, of all things, "The Ellen DeGeneres Show." I found that odd. Is the Depp vampire movie aiming for the daytime television demographic?

But they really threw out that "us vs. them" thing a long time ago. In the first season it was the wife who kept coming home, Andrea's sister, Jim (or whatever his name was - the guy they left under the tree). This season it has been Sophia, Dale, and all Herchel's family in the barn. They differentiate between strangers and the ones they know - and this isn't really all that different.

They do differentiate between the ones they know, that's true.

But here's what I am saying: it's one thing to recognize that people you know can turn into zombies if they get bitten or attacked. It's a whole other thing to realize that the zombieness is already living inside of you, so to speak.

Before, the thought was that if you could stay away from those nasty "Thriller" extras, you had a chance at being "okay," at least for a while. Now there is no okay.

To me, that's a different situation to come to grips with.

While I am not surprised over the kerfuffle over Kate Upton on the SI Swimsuit cover because some strange people think she is "too fat" (??!!??), hopefully this raises the issue again of underweight/anorexic models. I also can't help wondering if there would have been any kerfuffle if Christina Hendricks was the model on the cover of SI Swimsuit. Somehow I doubt it.

If Kate Upton is too fat, then I am extremely self-conscious due to my monstrous height. (Note: I am actually barely over five feet tall.)

Why wasn't Stacy Keibler at last night's dinner? Do you suppose Michelle wanted George all to herself? LOL!

According to her Twitter feed, she was busy yesterday with an InStyle magazine shoot. And now she's packing to go to Barcelona. So perhaps she had other things going on? She has been tweeting messages about Sudan.

Seriously, she has.


I'm wrapping up for the day, everyone. Thanks for all the questions, "Walking Dead" insights and White House dinner bon mots.

There's a chance that we may do a Walking Dead discussion on Monday, post-finale, here on the Post Web site. Have to see if we can make that happen. (Liz and I suspended the chats we were doing before, I'm afraid.) If the "Dead" discussion happens, I will certainly let you know in the blog.

Either way, we'll be back here next Thursday at 2, as always. Adios, and happy March Madness.

Looks like Clooney will be at the Sudanese Embassy tomorrow. Press release just came through confirming that.

Not that it should be a reason to go, just following up on a previous reader's question.

Okay, seriously -- bye now!

In This Chat
Jen Chaney
Also an accredited Celebritologist, Jen focuses on pop culture news and trends in the entertainment world.

In addition to overseeing movie content for the Post's Web site, she also writes regularly about film, DVDs and stars of screens large and small.

When she isn't blogging or at the movies, she's ... um ... probably at home, watching a movie.

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