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Posted at 10:42 AM ET, 09/24/2008

Reality Check: Cloris Leachman's Overexposure

By Liz Kelly

Sweet fancy Moses. Cloris Leachman must be stopped.

Let me explain:

A couple of nights ago, I was unfortunate enough to channel surf on over to ABC in the midst of one night of the three-evening "Dancing With the Stars" season premiere. This is what happens when "Intervention" starts airing reruns (thanks a lot A&E).

Now, aside from the fact that "DWTS" is cheesy and tacky and ranks right up there with a tractor pull in terms of not being my cup of tea, it can be somewhat fun to watch various celebs either blossom into ballroom quality dancers or fall flatter than Rachel Zoe's torso. Also, it's about as star-studded (we're talking cubic zirconia here) as it gets, so it's kind of hardship duty for me, ya know?

But nothing short of a tetanus shot could have prepared me for the image that is currently seared into my retinas and, because I'm all for misery getting as much company as possible, I'll share that image with you here in all its horrifying glory.


Cloris Leachman and partner Corky Ballas kick up their heels. (Photo Courtesy ABC)

In case you can't watch at work, let me describe the horror: Cloris Leachman ("Mary Tyler Moore," "Phyllis," "The Facts of Life") is 82 years old. She's aged well in some respects -- she's sharp as a tack and still possessed of that winning moxie that triggered my gag reflex even in childhood. She's also grown in other ways. Ways that make it hazardous for a woman -- especially a woman with enough liver spots to open a foie gras factory -- to wear a low-cut ball gown. There are just some things I don't want to see -- my father in his tighty whities, Pam Anderson sans makeup and Cloris Leachman's ample decolletage being slung around a dance floor. (Though some, apparently, thought Cloris's performance added a much needed element of "unpredictability" to the show.)

Honestly, the minds behind "DWTS" deserve some kind of medal for topping (bottoming?) the whole contestant with a prosthetic leg stunt. I can't imagine how they can possibly follow this up.

By Liz Kelly  | September 24, 2008; 10:42 AM ET
Categories:  Reality Check  
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Comments

Break out the industrial sized container of brain bleach.

Four words I never want to see together again: "Chloris Leachman" and "Over Exposed"

Posted by: ep | September 24, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

"I can't imagine how they can possibly follow this up."

Two words:

Verne Troyer.

Posted by: MoCoSnarky | September 24, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Cloris is the former MIL of Sharon Stone and Cloris' ex had an affair with Brando (who didn't?). How cool is that? And Cloris is a former beauty queen!!

Posted by: Tee hee | September 24, 2008 11:07 AM | Report abuse

Is that last name "Leachman" or "Leachingmounds"?

Posted by: Elias Howe | September 24, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Cloris is the former MIL of Sharon Stone and Cloris' ex had an affair with Brando (who didn't?). How cool is that? And Cloris is a former beauty queen!!

Posted by: Tee hee | September 24, 2008 11:07 AM

Oops. Cloris' ex also had an affair with Joan Collins!!!!

Posted by: Tee hee | September 24, 2008 11:11 AM | Report abuse

What knockers! (Why thank you, doctor.)

This just begs for a witty "Clorox Leachman" retort but I can't think of one.

Posted by: td | September 24, 2008 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Is Cloris short for clitoris?

Posted by: Anonymous | September 24, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, Liz. Can't feel the hate on this one.

Cloris Leachman is well aware how to play to a TV audience. She's doing what she does best. I think Sarah Rogers was correct: Cloris Leachman is a force all on her own, which is why she's been so much fun to watch for so very long.

And we can all only hope to be that sharp and move that well at 82. I don't think you ever see Sophia Loren NOT wearing something that shows off her decolletage, so why not Cloris? And remember, Helen Mirren recently showed us it can be done enviably well into your 60's anyway.

With the right foundation garments, flaunt 'em if you still got 'em. It's no worse than Rosario Dawson a week or so ago. http://gofugyourself.celebuzz.com/go_fug_yourself/2008/09/post_55.html

Posted by: Chasmosaur | September 24, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

I'm admittedly a fan of the show (don't as me why - I don't even know). And I'm a fan of Cloris Leachman.

But definitely not together. I'm really hoping she'll be voted off tonight, though I wouldn't mind her teaming up with Jimmy Kimmel and Guillermo for their take on the competition.

The worst was when Len asked her to control her cleavage on Monday night. EW all around. Just...EW.

Posted by: Em | September 24, 2008 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, Liz. Can't feel the hate on this one.

Yep, Cloris has the MOST competitive acting Emmys...and an Oscar.

Posted by: Tee hee | September 24, 2008 11:33 AM | Report abuse

What Chasmosaur said.

Posted by: Nosy Parker | September 24, 2008 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Come on, Liz, why are you afraid of octogenarians?

Posted by: 23112 | September 24, 2008 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Everytime a new DWTS show comes out, I can't help but want to be a fly on the wall of the room where the professional dancers are told who they are paired with. Can you imagine?

Mr. Exec: You, Miss Dancer, are paired with Lance Bass.

Miss Dancer: Sweet! He will be a good dancer cuz, you know, he likes other boys.

Mr. Exec: You, Mr. Dancer, will be paired with Brooke Burke.

Mr. Dancer: Awesome! I saw her dance on Wild on E. She will be great.

Mr. Exec: And you, Mr. Other Dancer, You are paired with Cloris Leachman.

Mr. Other Dancer: WHAT THE?!! I quit.

Ms. Other Dancer: At least you aren't stuck with the Comedy Central Roast guy...

fin.

Posted by: Osteph | September 24, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Hey, ain't nothing wrong with tractor pulls.

Posted by: possum | September 24, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

All I can say is that Cloris gets no fruit cup!

Posted by: methinks | September 24, 2008 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Whatever I was going to say about Cloris was entirely derailed by the phrase "[Liz Kelly's] dad in tighty whities."

Urk.

Posted by: byoolin | September 24, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

I agree. Frau Blucher gets a pass on this one.

***neigh!****

Posted by: To TD | September 24, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Picking on 82 year olds? Come on, Liz. I've seen your photo.

Posted by: Show some class | September 24, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Apparently, over on Yahoo News there is a video clip of Chloris Leachman going off on the judges. I couldn't watch it, but if anyone else wants to and report back, it would be appreciated.

Posted by: ep | September 24, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Poor Cloris.

I gotta hand it to her, though. It shows that she's some sort of a good sport, although I can't imagine why anyone would want to have anything to do with that horrid program.

dad's "tighty whities"?

Cloris' shoes "slung around a dance floor"?

EXCELLENT snark, Liz.

Posted by: Curmudgeon shivers at the sight of that photo | September 24, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Curmudgeon shivers at the sight of that photo | September 24, 2008 12:25 PM

Have you seen Liz's photo?? Flash forward to Liz at age 82...

Posted by: Shiver me this | September 24, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

anyone watching heroes?

Posted by: nall92 | September 24, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Not according to Pookie De Moraes, in today's Post.

Posted by: to nall92 | September 24, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

I too watched last night. Cloris' performance was hilarious but bordering on embarrassing. It was funny at first but she didn't know when to stop during the critique. I'm glad though it was that icky guy with the eyepatch that is leaving.
Funniest line of the evening Bruno to Rocco after his Mambo: "You grabbed your Mambo with both hands and squeezed it for every drop of fun!"
I may have to turn on the child protection gizmo for this show from now on! LOL

Posted by: hodie | September 24, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Funniest line of the evening Bruno to Rocco after his Mambo: "You grabbed your Mambo with both hands and squeezed it for every drop of fun!"
I may have to turn on the child protection gizmo for this show from now on! LOL

Posted by: hodie | September 24, 2008 12:56 PM

More great gay news!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 24, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

I only caught bits and pieces of the past two nights, but Cloris seems like she's off her rocker. Please tell me its just an act, cause otherwise its kind of sad.

Posted by: Stuck@Work | September 24, 2008 1:25 PM | Report abuse

cloris leachman is alsome! yur just jelus! she is a laff riot. yur comments R uncalled for!

Posted by: luvscloris | September 24, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

I thought she was being funny, and I think she knows she won't be around on the show long, so why not have a good time with it?

Don't hate on 80 somethings!

Posted by: Ame | September 24, 2008 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, twice today I opened the door for the trolls.

Posted by: hodie hangs her head in smame | September 24, 2008 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Jennifer Loven reports for the Associated Press: "President Bush plans to talk to Americans directly about the financial crisis in a prime-time, televised address Wednesday night.

"The White House says his speech at 9:01 p.m. EDT will be between 12 and 14 minutes long and will be delivered from the State Floor of the White House residence. Press secretary Dana Perino says Bush wants to tell the American people how the crisis affects them and help them understand the depth of the problem."

Posted by: don't Bush know Cloris don't wait for no one? | September 24, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Go to On Demand and watch the 2nd season of Mad Men. You will be much happier.

Posted by: chocolatetiara | September 24, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

"The White House says his speech at 9:01 p.m. EDT will be between 12 and 14 minutes long and will be delivered from the State Floor of the White House residence. Press secretary Dana Perino says Bush wants to tell the American people how the crisis affects them and help them understand the depth of the problem."

Posted by: don't Bush know Cloris don't wait for no one? | September 24, 2008 1:42 PM

Looks like an unscheduled laundry night!

Posted by: Where's the iron? | September 24, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Goodnight, Frau Blucher. Neeeiiigh!

Posted by: Nick | September 24, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

I've gotta say, I'm impressed that she could draw enough breath to get through her routine, what with the foundation garments she must be wearing. She's showing a lot of lift for an 82-year-old!

Posted by: BxNY | September 24, 2008 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Hey, George, we already KNOW how the crisis affects us and we already UNDERSTAND the true depth of the problem.

This is what happens when people let spoiled brats run wild.

Posted by: Curmudgeon, like Cloris, will have to work well innto her 80s | September 24, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Maybe Cloris should take naughty George over her knee and give him a good spanking.

Posted by: spare the rod | September 24, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Back to the "How do they top this one?" question. My two words . . .

Miss Piggy

Can you imagine the utter shame and humiliation to be felt by some as-yet-unknown C-lister when they bite the bullet before a PUPPET?!?

C'mon DWTS, start talking to Henson now. If Miss Piggy won't go for it, you might be able to score the Swedish Chef . . .

Posted by: aellura | September 24, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

start talking to Henson now

Whaddya think this is, Pushing Daisies?

Posted by: to aellura | September 24, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

I won't be around to see the day in 2050 that 79 year-old Liz Kelly takes her turn on the equivalent of DWTS and some snarky 30-something makes fund of Liz' DDs that hang to her knees.

How to top Cloris Leachman and Heather Mills?

Easy. Start a program where dance professionals are paired with politicians, and call it Dancing With Thieves.

George Bush can be THE star of the first season.

Posted by: Officer Donut | September 24, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Well, Liz, clearly you're harboring some sort of repressed childhood animosity, back from the days when she 'triggered your gag reflex.'

I think she's a hoot and livens up the show. She's 82, and I give her a lot of credit not only for the admittedly low-key dancing but also for her mental acuity. She makes me laugh. She won't be on the show long; let's enjoy it (and let her enjoy it) while we can.

Posted by: tina | September 24, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

carm down, he vas my boyfriend

Posted by: difft liz | September 24, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

So Liz, you're taking up Weingarten's distate for women who are well-endowed? Just 'cause your genes haven't gifted you with big bazoombas, you think you're superior to the rest of us who actually have the figure of a woman? This really was one of your most obnoxious postings.

Posted by: The Other Anonymous | September 24, 2008 6:18 PM | Report abuse

"Bazoombas"?

Posted by: The other Other Anonymous | September 24, 2008 7:20 PM | Report abuse

I like Cloris. If I watched that show, I suppose I'd just be happy to see someone outside the TV norm.

Posted by: Sarabeth (ducking from Liz) | September 24, 2008 8:00 PM | Report abuse

The writer of this column looks like a sack of potatoes, mashed.
with gravy.

Cloris leachman looked grand...

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 9:43 AM | Report abuse

I'm going to guess our columnist is an Obama fan,, her column have no taste, no brains, and a prejudice against those with talent.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 9:44 AM | Report abuse

Liz, I'm disappointed. So she's in her 80s. So she's in a ballgown. That's what women wear on the show.

Her dress wasn't inappropriate -- unless you're ageist and anti-Leachman.

Posted by: Chris | September 25, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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