Unlike the upfronts themselves, Jimmy Kimmel was not back onstage live in NYC today for the first time since 2019. Having tested positive for Covid again, the late-night host had to change plans and appear virtually to take a flamethrower to some of Disney’s executives, streaming dreams and offerings old and new.
While not appearing in person at Basketball City at Pier 36 at the tail end of the CEO Bob Chapek-introduced full bells and whistles presentation by House of Mouse brass and top tier talent, protean Kimmel was still in fine and fiery form after two years of pandemic-induced virtual roasts. “We’re not bullshitting you, we’re storytelling,” he proclaimed after ripping through Disney, the “smug bastards” at Netflix and all their mutual rivals. “Just remember this, this company owns everything. We own Mickey Mouse, we own Spider-Man, we own the Muppets, the Simpsons, the Kardashians, Encanto. We own it all!”
“We have enough power to build a Death Star — which is another thing we own!”
Even by his own admittedly high standard, this year’s roughly 15-minute routine had something for everyone and took on everyone, with maybe even more bite than before – and a slap or two, if you know what I mean.
Here are some of Kimmel’s best Zoomed-in zingers of the afternoon:
A Disney CEO has never spoken at the upfront before and now we know why. Bob, I think I speak for all of us when I say, “We can’t wait to see you in G.I. Jane 2.”
Disney has been so committed to being inclusive and culturally sensitive since … everyone started getting mad at us for not. But what do you expect? We are 100. This company is a hundred years old. It’s our 100th anniversary, and we are gonna celebrate that milestone like only Disney can — by milking the living shit out of it! “100 Years of Wonder.” Isn’t that the show Fred Savage got fired from last week?
THE BACHELOR FRANCHISE
A lot of people have been asking how we’re going to keep the Bachelor franchise fresh – and the answer is very simple: We’re not. We’re going to keep doing the same shit until everyone has herpes.
How about those f*ckers at Fox yesterday? After two years of telling everyone Covid is a hoax, they trick you into taking an Uber to watch a tape! Can they do that? And more importantly, why didn’t we do that?
Every year I say, “F*ck Netflix.” This year it came true. I have to admit, after watching those smug bastards choke the life out of us for years, it feels really good to see them stoop to selling advertising.
The only thing sadder than the finale for This Is Us were the ratings for the Winter Olympics. NBC paid almost $8 billion – for what turned out to be the lowest-rated Olympics ever. It’s surprising that viewers didn’t think watching skiers doing jumps in the shadow of a deserted nuclear power plant was the feel-good story of the year.
They’re rebooting Quantum Leap and Night Court. That isn’t a fall schedule. Those are the tapes you find in your dead uncle’s VCR.
We don’t have the Olympics, Young Sheldon or 14 shows about Chicago — but you know what we do have? Nathan f*cking Fillion.
Fox didn’t even bother to release a fall schedule yesterday. Which makes no sense. Why even have an upfront? Like, what if CBS decided not to release a fall schedule? If there’s no fall schedule, how would we know if Blue Bloods is still on the air? It is, thank God. CBS renewed Blue Bloods – aka Magnum Pee Frequently – for another 18 seasons. Along with all their other old shows for old people.
NETWORK TV & STREAMERS
Let’s be honest: Our days are numbered. Of course the streamers are crushing us. We’re a fax machine five years after they invented email. What we’re experiencing now in television is what a horse felt like the first time it saw a Model T. You know what ABC’s big plan to win back viewers is? To invite Will Smith to the Oscars next year — and let him go nuts on anyone he wants. What else can we do? There are too many pluses to compete with Disney Plus, Hulu Plus, Paramount Plus, Discovery Plus, Apple TV Plus – it’s a Plusterf*ck out there.