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9 reasons W. Kamau Bell should replace Alec Baldwin on MSNBC

Because the awesome "Totally Biased" host is looking for work, and Baldwin has a habit of offending people


Prachi Gupta
November 16, 2013 10:30PM (UTC)

W. Kamau Bell, former host of the revolutionary late night comedy show "Totally Biased," is looking for work now that FXX has canceled his show due to low ratings. Meanwhile, the folks over at MSNBC have suspended Alec Baldwin, who is still allegedly shouting homophobic slurs at people. But despite low ratings and the fact that he has offended a significant chunk of his supposedly liberal base, Baldwin could still come back to host late night talk show "Up Late With Alec Baldwin." Here are nine reasons why that job should go to Bell:

1. W. Kamau Bell's vocabulary

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Unlike Alec Baldwin, who had to be told by GLAAD that “cocksucker” is offensive to the LGBT community, Bell is out there educating the public:

2. "Totally Biased" had better guests and segments than "Up Late"

So far, as Salon’s Daniel D’Addario points out, “Up Late With Alec Baldwin” has hosted “the sort of people who aren’t invited to do Letterman or Leno,” like Keir Dullea, Debra Winger and Ellen Barkin. Whereas “Totally Biased” has hosted people like Tracy Morgan, "Orange Is the New Black's" Laverne Cox and comedian Sarah Silverman. While Baldwin has single-handedly launched national scandals, Bell’s segments have jump-started national conversations about rape jokes, race and popular culture.

Referring to Baldwin’s late night show, media critic John Ziegler told Fox News that “what celebrities don’t realize about talk shows is that, one, they aren’t easy to do, and two, viewers judge them mostly on the nature of the content, not on how famous a person the host is." Baldwin might not realize this, but Bell definitely does.

3. "South Park" has not parodied Bell

Because he has not offended pretty much the entire world, and instead seems to be a pretty nice guy, "South Park" has not needed to parody Bell, as it did Baldwin recently:

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4. W. Kamau Bell can ask white guys anything

... Literally, anything:

5. Ratings

“Totally Biased’s” first season gave network execs enough confidence to move the weekly show into a second season, produced nightly. Two months into its sophomore season, the show was cut, with dismal ratings. But! As Salon contributor Anoosh Jorjorian explains, “Rather than broadening Kamau’s reach, FXX seemed to make the show less accessible.”

And since Baldwin’s show has been tanking since it aired in October, it seems like taking a risk on a new face who has some interesting things to say might be worthwhile.

6. W. Kamau Bell is not Alec Baldwin

Though W. Kamau Bell is massively talented, sadly, the fact that he is not Alec Baldwin is perhaps the most compelling reason for him to replace Alec Baldwin as a host. Because Alec Baldwin is the worst.

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7. Bell might fit in better at MSNBC

I bet MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow would probably enjoy W. Kamau Bell as a colleague a lot more than Alec Baldwin (I mean, look at how much they are laughing here!):

8. The unforgiving Internet hates Alec Baldwin way, way more

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The Google results for “Alec Baldwin is” are worse than those for “W. Kamau Bell is” ... just saying:

9. Did I mention that W. Kamau Bell is not Alec Baldwin?

This really cannot be stressed enough. Really.


Prachi Gupta

Prachi Gupta is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on pop culture. Follow her on Twitter at @prachigu or email her at pgupta@salon.com.

MORE FROM Prachi GuptaFOLLOW prachiguLIKE Prachi Gupta

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Alec Baldwin Comedy Diversity Homophobia Late Night Tv Msnbc Racism Video W. Kamau Bell




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