How about, “Let’s Beat Up Burnett and Beckerman?”

You know that stuff that Sweet Virginia needed to scrape right off her shoes (sorry, no links, you have to get it)? They must have been hip-deep in it when they thought up this one.

By far the most unlikely star of a prospective fall situation comedy
is that still-active lead singer of the Rolling Stones, who has signed
on to an ABC pilot for its fall schedule. Just to increase the degree
of unlikelihood, Mr. Jagger shot his scenes for the New York-based
pilot in a hotel room in Auckland, New Zealand, last week.

was the culmination of a saga at least as whimsical as the premise of
the show, which, for now, anyway, is titled "Let’s Rob Mick Jagger."

The writing team that came up with the idea, Rob Burnett, long David Letterman’s
executive producer, and his partner, Jon Beckerman, had previously
created the NBC comedy-drama "Ed." As Mr. Burnett outlined the tale in
a telephone interview, he and Mr. Beckerman "wondered if there was a
way do a serialized comedy — something like a comedy version of ‘Lost’
or ’24.’ "

Hatched in numerous meetings, the concept centered on
a janitor for a prominent New York building, to be played by the
character actor Donal Logue.
Down on his luck, the janitor sees a celebrity on television wallowing
in his wealth during a tour of his new Manhattan penthouse. Enlisting a
crew of similar ordinary but frustrated accomplices, the janitor
conceives a plot to rob the big shot’s apartment, a story line that
would unfold over a 24-episode television season.

Well, for one thing, serial comedy’s been done. Check the original BBC version of "The Office," which is highly unlikely to be topped by this high-concept freak.

For another thing — and this is the awful part — if I thought Mick would be nearly as much fun in this as he was in "Freejack" (which is on a list I haven’t yet completed of "Top Five Cheesy Movies that are Fun to Watch"), I might even tune in. For the pilot, anyway.

Morbid curiosity will take one a long way. Television counts on that.

23 thoughts on “How about, “Let’s Beat Up Burnett and Beckerman?”

  1. Dave

    Will the girlie man Mick be prancing around in his spandex tighties? I will pass on that show. But my curiosity is piqued. Will they try to steal his false teeth, or maybe his Viagra, and is he covered by AARP homeowner’s insurance? The suspense builds.

  2. Herb

    Forgive me Brad, I feel inspired tonight. Maybe it’s all rubbish, but this is what came to my mind when Lee asked about what is wrong with our culture:
    I think I have realized what it is. What is missing in our culture that makes it far less attractive that one might think it should be. What is it that half the world if furious with us about? Well, part of it comes with leadership, granted. But what really has a lot of the world up in arms is the lack of community that is typical of American life. Almost every aspect of our culture is built around shielding ourselves from one another. We want to drive into our suburban home, and shut the garage door, bang. Back in my little world.
    OK, go ahead and say I’m crazy. I’ll wager that some of the reason we even read and post on this blog is to experience some community. At a distance, mind you.
    Someone wrote me an interesting e-mail the other day. What does he miss in the American church that he had overseas? In a word, community. This guy had young people to talk to, mentors older than himself, who could help him with some of life’s big questions when he was younger. Guys who took him seriously, helped him think. Just didn’t tell him what to believe. And he is a man of faith today. But he says, if he had only had American church youth work, which often consists only of activities, he probably wouldn’t believe anything. Evangelicals would say, he saw Christ in action.
    If the oil crisis leads us back to an interdependency we haven’t seen in decades, it will be worth it. In fact, I’ll wager that, though we think we are really well enough because of our economic prowess, the following Bible verse applies pretty well to our culture:

    You brag, “I’m rich, I’ve got it made, I need nothing from anyone,’ oblivious that in fact you’re a pitiful, blind beggar, threadbare and homeless. (Rev. 3:17, The Message).

    Interesting how God saw a rich bunch of Christians at First Megachurch in Laodizea.
    I don’t think I’m much impressed with the idea that we must have a great culture because people are dying to get here and earn money. Yea, that’s true, but look what happens – they head for communities. where they have mutual support when they do it.
    The polarization we often experience when trying to dialogue may be just another symptom of individualism gone to seed. No wonder the Muslim said, “your culture is ruining my culture.” That is no lame excuse; it is being rammed down their throats by the Mr. Potters of the world. It probably won’t be stopped. But maybe some courageous “Georges” can help some.
    I’m thinking of a guy who was a member of a church that a friend of mine pastors in England. He had a church member that they just couldn’t figure out. Every week, once a week, he went to the hairdresser, and he didn’t have much hair (like me). Finally they got it out of him. “It’s the only time in my life when anybody ever touches me,” was what he said.
    Got to think some more about this one. 1 Corinthians 13 – sure are a lot of noisy gongs and clanging cymbals out there, but not much relationship building, I don’t think. Isn’t that something of what the Unparty stands for? Maybe?

  3. Brad Warthen

    Well, something I’ve noticed about “communities” on-line is that they’re kind of like communities in the Wild West — consisting largely of people who couldn’t get along or fit in back East.
    These folks would like to find a place in a new community, and some are well-suited to contributing to the creation of that. But others are about getting rip-roaring drunk, fighting, and taking potshots at anything in sight.
    Where I fit into this is hard to tell. Maybe the former lawman who, having spent years enforcing the law (on the editorial pages, where we at least uphold SOME standards on letters to the editor, etc.), has gotten pretty world-weary about folks’ failing to get along. I know we’re not back East, and cowhands have to blow off steam at the end of a drive, but my lawman instincts tells me that at some point you’ve gotta draw the line. So far, though, I haven’t put my badge back on yet.

  4. Lee

    Most of the “American culture” which the rest of the world sees is that which is sold to them by the infotainment industry – rap music, pornography, violent cinema. They think America is mostly just New York and Los Angeles, populated by rude thug men and their trashy women.
    What makes America great is the remnant of shared culture: the Bible, the stories of the settlers, the heroes of the 1776, the pioneers, the railroads, Edison, Ford, Bell, Carnegie and the progress made in 150 years away from the yoke of the Old World.

  5. Dave

    Brad, let me tell you about people from the East. They will greet you cordially, smile, and shake your hand, but with their other hand they are picking your wallet clean. As I remember, that was a classic line that Amos said about Kingfish. Now that was a great comedy, genuinely funny, but not PC today.

    Herb, that is pretty deep. Not sure I follow the whole idea.

  6. Herb

    Thanks, Dave. Actually, I don’t think it’s deep, just foggy. It was one of those “get up after you’ve gone to bed because these thoughts just keep coming into your mind and you gotta get ’em out” thing. Usually, if I wait a day on something like that, I might be able to make sense of it.
    I will write this: we’ve pulled together in our neighborhood after a couple of recent tragedies. Actually talked to each other and related a bit. I can remember when that was a lot more normal, as a kid. We don’t need each other anymore, at least we don’t think we do, and maybe that’s part of the problem. In any neighborhood, there is a variety of political stripes, church membership (or none at all, of course), and opinions. I think it was here that I first learned that, hey, there are people out there who think differently than I do. Nowadays, I think we converse very little with people who hold different or opposite views to our own.
    And by the way, the person in the East has a different filter through which she/he looks at life. Yea, there are lots of pickpockets. But you’d be surprised how much closer the Biblical worldview (for example on the honor/shame issue, saving face, etc.) is to them than to us. That won’t relate to someone who doesn’t care about the biblical worldview, but I know you do.
    Now don’t tell me that line about the guy in the East was just a joke.

  7. Herb

    Ah, I should wake up. You were talking about the East of the U. S., of course, not Afghanistan. Now it is my turn to mutilate the context.

  8. Dave

    Herb, Think back to immediately after 9-11. Some of Bush’s biggest detractors were on TV proclaiming it was time to be one nation. Even the French (some paper) made a statement about “We are all Americans now”. Tragedy does bring people together. But it wasn’t long before the finger pointing started. From the dems, not Bush. I won’t belabor it all, we can all read. Then the liberals took it up a few notches to a form of hatred, personal hatred. That is what is really wrong now. As much as I had no use for Slick Willie, I and most of the GOP could not hate the guy. Look at how Bush 1 and W have embraced him in several ways with the Tsunami and other efforts. The Dems have continued to raise the level of polarization, and actually looking at it from a GOP win strategy, this is working for the GOP. The more Pelosi, Dean, Hillary, Reid, et al get on the telly and whine, complain, and spew their Bush hatred, the more they turn off the American people, especially the ones who will actually vote. The proof of this is that in many states these so called Dem leaders cannot appear with a local candidate. Remember when Inez T. discretely took a hike when (was it Kerry) came into SC to campaign?

    I could go on about the lack of civility in the entire world as we see the culture clash of Muslims with just about everyone and everything else. Take a look at the last 100 terrorist incidents throughout the world and you may find one that is not from a Muslim. For me, I liked these people a lot better when they were living in tents and riding camels around, pre-oil nationalization. But at least Bush has given Iraqi people a glimmer of hope that a Muslim dominated nation can live in a democracy with a constitution and basic human rights. As I have said before, historians down the line will be putting W on Mt Rushmore as one of the greatest deliverer of freedom the world has ever seen.

  9. bill

    by Merle Haggard
    Why don’t we liberate these United States
    We’re the ones who need it the worst
    Let the rest of the world help us for a change
    And let’s rebuild America first
    Our highways and bridges are falling apart
    Who’s blessed and who has been cursed
    There’s things to be done all over the world
    But let’s rebuild America first
    —- Instrumental Interlude —-
    Who’s on the hill and who’s watching the valley
    Who’s in charge of it all
    God bless the Army and God bless our liberty
    Dadgum the rest of it all
    Yeah, men in position but backing away
    Freedom is stuck in reverse
    Let’s get out of Iraq and get back on the track
    And let’s rebuild America first
    —- Instrumental Interlude —-
    Why don’t we liberate these United States
    We’re the ones who need it the most
    You think I’m blowing smoke
    Boys it ain’t no joke
    I make twenty trips a year from coast to coast

  10. Brad Warthen

    Yeah, the interesting thing about that — and ideologues, take notice — is that you can’t tell from that whether Merle Haggard is a liberal or a conservative. That’s because for the past 30 years or so, liberals have been competing with conservatives to see who can shout the loudest: “Me First,” and “Screw the rest of the world.”
    All you can tell is that he is some sort of populist who can’t see past the reach of his tour bus’s headlights.

  11. Lee

    Some with with an ideological or philosphical core is preferable to the spineless, selfserving moderates who will sell out their state and country in order to satisfy the special interests who finance their re-election.
    Lindsay Graham’s sellout to the crime wave of illegal immigrants comes to mind as a good example – offer up some insincere remarks about how it is a problem but we don’t want to hurt anyone, then let the problem continue.

  12. bill

    “Masters of War” by Bob Dylan
    Come you masters of war
    You that build all the guns
    You that build the death planes
    You that build the big bombs
    You that hide behind walls
    You that hide behind desks
    I just want you to know
    I can see through your masks
    You that never done nothin’
    But build to destroy
    You play with my world
    Like it’s your little toy
    You put a gun in my hand
    And you hide from my eyes
    And you turn and run farther
    When the fast bullets fly
    Like Judas of old
    You lie and deceive
    A world war can be won
    You want me to believe
    But I see through your eyes
    And I see through your brain
    Like I see through the water
    That runs down my drain
    You fasten the triggers
    For the others to fire
    Then you set back and watch
    When the death count gets higher
    You hide in your mansion
    As young people’s blood
    Flows out of their bodies
    And is buried in the mud
    You’ve thrown the worst fear
    That can ever be hurled
    Fear to bring children
    Into the world
    For threatening my baby
    Unborn and unnamed
    You ain’t worth the blood
    That runs in your veins
    How much do I know
    To talk out of turn
    You might say that I’m young
    You might say I’m unlearned
    But there’s one thing I know
    Though I’m younger than you
    Even Jesus would never
    Forgive what you do
    Let me ask you one question
    Is your money that good
    Will it buy you forgiveness
    Do you think that it could
    I think you will find
    When your death takes its toll
    All the money you made
    Will never buy back your soul
    And I hope that you die
    And your death’ll come soon
    I will follow your casket
    In the pale afternoon
    And I’ll watch while you’re lowered
    Down to your deathbed
    And I’ll stand o’er your grave
    ‘Til I’m sure that you’re dead

  13. Brad Warthen

    So, with almost everybody interested in politics huddled into one or the other hostile, chauvinistic mob, how is it that the one who dares to stand up on his own against them all is “spineless?”
    Oh, and Bill: Remember when singing to pronounce “war” as rhyming with “tar” or “par.” Mr. Zimmerman doesn’t enunciate the way other folks do.
    My favorite such instance is from “Talkin’ World War III Blues:”
    “It was a NARHmul day.”

  14. bill

    Bombs Over Baghdad
    John Trudell
    Bombs over Baghdad, Bombs over Baghdad
    Bombs over Baghdad, Dancers of Death
    Murder in the air, with the next breath
    Macho Queens selling war-makers toys
    Raining Destruction, Good Old Boys
    Death bringer In Queen George’s Eyes
    Read his lips, war-maker lies
    Religious Rights revenging sword
    Thou shalt kill in the name of the Lord
    The Sheep and the Cattle can’t keep from milling
    Some are more than ready some aren’t willing
    Volunteering in what they’re not dying for
    The Young Republican Guard crying for war.
    Free speech as free as its thought
    Controlled behavior reacts as its taught
    Fighting for Peace can’t comprehend
    Hate out of love is violent pretends
    Bombs Over Baghdad, Bombs Over Baghdad
    Bombs Over Baghdad, Bombs Over Baghdad
    Vampires drinking blood and oil cocktails
    Their violence works it hardly ever fails
    When blind man can’t see he believes blind
    Blind obedience is the child of mindless minds
    New world order is an old world lie.
    Fighting for peace, see how they die.
    Dragging in God, as they turn violent.
    God says nothing, he just remains silent.
    Stop madmen from running loose.
    Mother earth woman cant take the abuse
    living right now is living for tomorrow
    Time is saying there’s no more time tomorrow
    Vampires drinking blood and oil cocktails
    Their violence works it hardly ever fails
    Bombs over Baghdad Dancers of Death
    Murder in the air with the next breath
    Macho Queen war-maker toys
    Raining destruction Good Old Boys
    New world order is a whole world lie.
    Fighting for peace, watch them all die.
    Dragging in God, as they turn violent.
    God says nothing, he just remains silent.
    Bombs over Baghdad, Dancers of Death
    Bombs over Baghdad, Dancers of Death
    Bombs over Baghdad, Dancers of Death
    Bombs over Baghdad, Dancers of Death
    Bombs over Baghdad
    Site Meter

  15. bill

    “One Too Many Mornings”-Dylan
    Down the street the dogs are barkin’
    And the day is a-gettin’ dark.
    As the night comes in a-fallin’,
    The dogs ‘ll lose their bark.
    An’ the silent night will shatter
    From the sounds inside my mind,
    For I’m one too many mornings
    And a thousand miles behind.
    From the crossroads of my doorstep,
    My eyes they start to fade,
    As I turn my head back to the room
    Where my love and I have laid.
    An’ I gaze back to the street,
    The sidewalk and the sign,
    And I’m one too many mornings
    An’ a thousand miles behind.
    It’s a restless hungry feeling
    That don’t mean no one no good,
    When ev’rything I’m a-sayin’
    You can say it just as good.
    You’re right from your side,
    I’m right from mine.
    We’re both just one too many mornings
    An’ a thousand miles behind.
    I think those last four lines say it all.That’s my favorite Bob song.Have a nice weekend.

  16. Dave

    Bill, you live in the greatest country in the world and we are actually a thousand miles ahead. Can’t you see that is why there are multi-year waiting lists for immigrants to get in here. An Indian friend of mine with a Masters in Comp. Sci waited 5 years to get clearance to come here. Some of us “native” Americans need to step back and appreciate the wonder of this country. Let’s be positive about who we are and what blessings we truly have. Although I will say I may be misunderstanding the point of that song.

  17. Herb

    You’re right from your side, I’m right from mine.

    Funny, but this morning at our (bi-weekly) 6:00 a.m. men’s prayer breakfast (8 guys from our church come to our place — my wife makes a mean breakfast) one of our group mentioned the prevailing tenent of post-modernism: truth is whatever each person thinks it is. Obviously no standard to evaluate anybody’s viewpoint by. The interesting thing with that is that you would think it would lead to more tolerance, when in actual fact, we seem more and more prepared to blow each other’s heads off. Especially moderate heads. Look at Lee’s support for extremism above.

  18. Herb

    Oh, and Dave, Bob Dylan also underlined what I said above about community. “We’re a thousand miles ahead.” True, if you’re thinking about stuff and toys. Don’t get me wrong, I like the stuff, too. But what I think Dylan is bemoaning is the lack of community, and here, we do lag far behind, in my opinion.
    Check out the alarming increase in the suicide rate in the US, as compared to other developed nations. In a hurry, I couldn’t find statistics on non-developed nations, but I know by experience that it is far lower. You know (this is purely anecdotal evidence, I realize) where you see the happiest kids? India.

  19. Dave

    Herb, Do you know where the suicide rate is extremely low, almost nil? Zimbabwe of all places. Then again, female life expectancy there is age 34. Think about that, while it is what, 80 in the US. Suicide is also higher in the secular atheist cultures of Europe. India is still mostly a third world nation so they can’t be compared to us. Attitude surveys show that Europeans for the most part are not happy people and have lost their hope for the future. That is the culture of socialism that the Democrat party would like to bring to this country. Insane for sure. Israel, on the other hand, has one of the lowest suicide rates. King David (another great Dave by the way) banished human sacrifice before the time of Christ. With suicide and euthanasia, the secular left is trying to defy God’s laws.

  20. Herb

    India is still mostly a third world nation so they can’t be compared to us.

    Dave, isn’t the presupposition you are making, aside from the length of life is that we are better off because we have more money? I am challenging that very presupposition.
    And what use is it if you live until 80, and are miserable most of the time? That is admittedly a caricature and over-emphasis, but you get my point.
    Are we so wonderfully happy and contented as we think we are? Because our per capital income is so much higher? I don’t think so. I don’t even think we really know our real, inner condition.

  21. Dave

    Herb, I will agree that material things and better medical care to elongate lifespans do not constitute the happiness factor that the suicide rate partly reflects. The spiritual side of life or the core inner soul has much more to do with it. The advantage we have in this country is possession of the freedom to be creative, use one’s imagination, be inventive, and so forth, which leads to an aura of hope and a better future. Many other societies have their people occupying their time finding food for the next day. And yes, we do have some of that in this country, as not everyone is wealthy by any measure. This nation’s experiment in a republican form of democracy is still by world history standards a fragile one. Most would agree our system may not be the best, but let someone show us a better alternative. Someone else said that long ago.

    My point is we are blessed with the cultural and economic environment to pursue happiness, it is not a guarantee by any means. On top of that, those of us who are Christians have a belief system that works as a sort of regulator on our expectations. So, I cannot be envious of George Steinbrenner for one reason in that it is a sin, but also for the reason that many of us have been raised to be grateful every day for what we do have. “Give us this day our DAILY bread. and so on”. If we have that, we can be happy, and who needs a billion dollars? I am not wealthy by any stretch compared to the Forbes Mag. rich people list, but even with the nominal assets I have accumulated you find that assets can be headaches. You own property and along with it comes the obligation to maintain it, pay taxes, and so on. One econ professor I had in grad school once said the happiest man is the world is the construction worker with a color tv and a six pack in the fridge. That could be true as that fictional person with little assets may be living happy as a lark. But ultimately happiness has a lot to do with self imposed attitude. That is one reason the Republican party has more appeal to me than the others. For the most part, it is the positive, can do party, the party that wants to preserve more freedom to live unencumbered by rules and regulations. But I imagine I have made that point pretty obvious over time. Cheers.

  22. Herb

    Good points, Dave. Truth is, a lot of happiness is learning how to deal with pain and stress. You will have pain, I guarantee it. I’m sure you know that, too. As a friend of mine says, “growing old ain’t for the weak-hearted.” Anyway, end of sermonette, have a nice Sunday.

  23. Lee

    The murder rates in most of the undeveloped world are so high, who needs to commit suicide?

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