It was a little bizarre watching Miller bring up the subject that people think he's a neocon. He made sure to proclaim (from my unreliable memory), "I'm really a libertarian, I'm liberal on a lot of issues other than the war!" "I'm pro-gay marriage! I'm pro-choice!" The uncomfortable unspoken message being, "Love me, come back to me, watch my show!"
I think the problem is that somehow Miller really did lose a lot of his funny post-9/11. It's not just a "we don't like you 'cause you joined the enemy' thing, though that's certainly a part of it. But even that clip Jon showed of Miller's show before introducing Miller was painfully unfunny. An ugly joke on Camilla Parker-Bowles? Oh man, what happened to you? You turned into Joan Rivers, dude. Joan-fucking-Rivers!
What was also uncomfortable was that Miller basically did a stand-up schtick for a lot of the interview. And normally I love the arcane references, but they just weren't that effective last night. And it also made me realize that guests aren't usually that canned. I mean, I'm sure in the pre-interview guests pick a story to tell or whatnot or a few topics to hit. But for the most part, it feels more organic. Usually Jon and his guest talk about stuff, events, opinions, etc.
Miller's interview reminded me of when comedians come on to The Tonight Show--at least back in the misty days when I watched it. It's not a real interview, but an opportunity to do a routine. Jon eventually turned it into a conversation, but for awhile there he just let Miller do his thing. Jon clearly admires Dennis Miller and kept him on for a second segment, allowing Miller to ride on his laurels.
The audience was polite to him, unlike for some other guests in the past. We have seen Jon seriously scold rude audiences before.
I don't know, but the interview made me feel a bit sad. I used to think Dennis Miller was all that and a bag of chips. Now he's more likely to make me cringe or shake my head. I did watch an episode of Miller's show last year, and it was like a pale imitation of The Daily Show. From the clip Miller brought, I doubt much has improved. 'Tis a shame.