Thursday, August 3, 2017

The new Ernie

A while back I wrote about Ernie Kovacs, the often seen TV comic of the 1950s.

Ernie earned (sorry) a good critical reputation but never really broke through to major success. His act was a little too offbeat and in-jokey for the great American unwashed. With Celebrity Name Game trudging off the field toward the Nielsen showers, it strikes me that Craig Ferguson might be the Ernie of the new century.

Like Kovacs, Ferguson has not lacked for kindly critical notice, and he has a couple of Emmys to prove it. (Whatever I might think about show biz self-congratulation.) But his act has never really broken through to the kind of mass market acceptance that, say, Steve Harvey has won.

Maybe it's the accent (just kidding). The actual reason is probably Craig's oddball humor, which always seems rather disconnected from any reality except his own. Ernie might know what I'm talking about, though I realize I'm not expressing it too well.

Anyway, it's too bad that an entertaining game show will soon be only a memory, except maybe for reruns on GSN. (No, I haven't heard anything about the network acquiring the show.) Celebrity Name Game was good while it lasted.


  1. Ferguson's humor has always been goofy and off the wall while Harvey is more or less sarcastic and deadpan. He was like that on his late night show as well. But I liked Ferguson's style on CNG. Even if he had to tone it down for a daytime show, he was still funny. I thought he was a good fit for the show. Producers probably wanted a guy who was humorous and supportive. They didn't need another Alex Trebek who would take the game WAY too seriously.

  2. Totally agree that I really appreciate Craig. He took such a SIMPLE (ie: Match Game) and made it alot of fun to watch. I do wish GSN would pick it up

  3. POP TV(formerly TV Guide Channel IIRC) airs reruns of Celebrity Name Game weekdays, perhaps they'll continue to air them after next month.