Chris Rock expressed incredulity last night on the "Jay Leno Show" that people are defending Roman Polanski because of his stature as a director: "He made good movies 30 years ago, Jay! Even Johnnie Cochran don't have the nerve to go, 'Well, did you see O.J. play against New England?'"
Incidentally, I was never a fan of Leno when he hosted "The Tonight Show," but this new show ... yikes. First of all, I've caught only a few snippets here and there, but it's getting awkward watching the guests bust Leno's balls about his "demotion" to 10 p.m., even though that's not exactly what took place. And that's just the tip of awkberg. Watching Leno interview Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz a couple weeks ago was excrutiating, not only because Diaz was cracking unfunny jokes and cackling like a hyena while Cruise tried to be a good sport and laugh along with her, but also because, as part of some new segment, Leno asked Cruise to recite a line from "Top Gun," sing a lullaby that he does for his daughter and what he's better at, sex or flying a plane. I imagine Cruise had a very short conversation the next morning with his agent: "You're fired." Then, later in the same show, as part of the new deal where guests have to "earn" their plug, the audience was subjected to Michael Moore singing "The Times They Are A-Changin'" a capella. I think if he's going to have celebs put out for their plug, he should be able to hit a gong and deny them if they suck. Also, it's a bit deceptive for the show to present these bits as the stars' idea if they aren't, because Rock's thing last night was clearly prepared by Leno's staff.