HBO Thinks Lange "Bordered On Bad Taste" And Had A "Mean-Spirited Tone"

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Tell me something I don't know, HBO. That's what HBO is staying today after one of the most awkward exchanges in television history, SI's Richard Deitsch was on hand to witness the whole thing. Deitsch got to talk with both Joe Buck and HBO President Ross Greenburg, and here were their thoughts....

Buck said after the show that he was aware of Lange's comedy "but I didn't think it would go to that degree. But I don't want it to ruin what I think was a really good show. For whatever happened [with Lange], live is live. There were things said at the end that I am not fan of but people can judge what Artie said however they want."

Before Lange left the stage, Buck said he asked him, 'Was I good? Was that great?' "That's his M.O.," Buck said. "That's what he believed he was brought here to do. And, you know, he can. He's a guest and it's live TV. At some point short of hitting a trap door, what are you going to do?...He came out and did his thing. I can't blame him for that but I wish it was a notch lower. I was thinking, 'How much longer do we have in the segment?' I thought that spending time on a treadmill felt long, but that [segment] was eight or nine minutes turned into an eternity."

Lange walked off the stage to mostly applause. As he departed the stage, he said, "Waaagggh. I'll never be on here again." Prior to show in talking with a reporter who asked him about throwing out a first pitch at a minor league game in Trenton soon, Lange cracked, "I'm going to be thrown out the first minute here."

HBO Sports president Ross Greenburg said Lange "bordered on bad taste" and had a "mean-spirited" tone. Greenburg said the segment made him uncomfortable at times, but he hoped that the Favre interview (which Buck handled very well) would be the story that carried the day. "This feels like they are not going to be too complementary to his [Lange's] appearance, just judging from the reaction of the crowd. But it really is the public's judgment. Live television is all about risk-reward and we knew who Artie Lange was when he was booked. There was a certain degree of a risk factor where he would go and where he would take us."
For all that Buck went through last night, he certainly has a calm viewpoint following the venom. Obviously you don't know what you're getting with Lange, but I'm sure that was above and beyond what anyone was imagining beforehand. Lange, on the other hand, is saying that Greenburg told him to go there if Rudd and Sudeikis "were boring", and had some choice words for him on the Stern Show this morning.

While the event was certainly shocking, the best take I've heard on the situation comes from The Big Lead, who posed the question, "If Artie Lange Hadn’t Appeared on Joe Buck’s Show, Would There Be Any Buzz About the Debut?" The answer.....probably not.

Joe Buck, HBO respond to wild Artie Lange appearance (SI)

Posted by Awful Announcing at 10:21 AM

6 Comments:

Even if your cable package went out last night, you've probably heard about the rather tepid debut of "Joe Buck Live." Tepid, until Howard Stern joke monkey Artie Lange destroyed everything Joe Buck holds dear on live television.
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aser said...
Jun 16, 2009, 10:55:00 AM  

Exactly. If he Artie wasn't being himself, no one would be talking about that shitfest today.

GMoney said...
Jun 16, 2009, 10:55:00 AM  

Well, did Joe Buck not say on the Jim Rome Show last week that if he bombed, he'd have to wait until September for redemption? Perhaps Buck meant September of 2030.

Brad James said...
Jun 16, 2009, 1:26:00 PM  

Joe Buck Show = reincarnation of the horrible Mike Lupica Show on the Deuce

mark said...
Jun 16, 2009, 2:05:00 PM  

Artie should be a permanent side-kick for that show. I would watch every week.

Scott said...
Jun 16, 2009, 6:41:00 PM  

I think a better idea for this show would be to have someone make Joe Buck uncomfortable every week, it would be a nice pot luck.

A contest to see who could disgust Joe the most.

An enterprising producer would make this happen. Maybe Joe could be in on it too.

hollywood wags said...
Jun 16, 2009, 8:12:00 PM  

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