Comment Box: Ryan Seacrest vs. Billy Bush
How can you tell Billy Bush apart from Ryan Seacrest? They seem interchangeable to me. I guess all smirks look alike to me.
Well, duh, Billy Bush is obviously the one described in Wikipedia as: "known for his light-hearted sense of humor and on-air hijinks with celebrity interviewees."
Now that that's clear, we can move on to the more interesting question: Which one would win in a cage match, duel or arm-wrestling match?
Seacrest is three years younger than Bush, so he may have the vigor of youth on his side. Also, he's used to holding his own with reputed sourpuss Simon Cowell and has managed to dispatch former "Idol" co-host Brian Dunkleman, supplant Rick Dees on radio, Dick Clark on New Year's Eve and D-lister Kathy Griffin on E!. Still, he has fumbled in the past -- most notably when he failed to win over Angelina Jolie on the red carpet at this year's Golden Globes and by attempting to turn the lead balloon "Seacrest out" into his catchphrase.
Bush, meanwhile, may have some WMDs up his sleeve as a first cousin of President George W. Bush. He's also scored some memorable interviews -- Tom Cruise first criticized Brooke Shields's use of antidepressants to treat postpartum depression in an interview with Bush and he reportedly used a bacon, egg and cheese sandwich to score the first interview with Britney Spears's ex Jason Alexander. Still, hosting the lame "You're the One That I Want" reality competition may have a kryptonite-like effect on Bush's strength.
Who would win? It's even money at this point.
Washington, D.C.: As a bartender, aka, "The last legal drug dealer," I have to ask you Liz, purveyor of celebrity news to a celebrity-obsessed culture that is often drunk on its own fascination with being fascinated by the completely un-fascinating, which one of us sleeps better at night given that we are both in evolutionary stumping professions?
Well, beyond the obvious fact that my intoxicant is unlikely to endanger anyone behind the wheel (unless one were to flashback to a recent Britney Spears picture while negotiating a tough intersection), the distinction is indeed fine. Also, it's important to note that overconsumption of Celebritology causes no dreaded "beer goggle" effect.
You do, though, ask an uncomfortable question: Do I feel any pangs of remorse or regret for feeding the beast that is celebrity gossip? Is it a far, far worse thing that I do?
No. I don't mistake myself or celebrity news for anything more relevant to our lives than idle voyeurism. At the least, what TomKat, Brangelina and Paris provide is a brief respite from the real news -- i.e., the frighteningly grim news from Iraq. At the most, these same people give us a petri dish specimen to analyze, helping us to understand the currents of mass media and pop culture. Also, where else on washingtonpost.com are you going to find a link to this?
| February 5, 2007; 10:43 AM ET
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