Ken Tucker
August 01, 2007 AT 08:52 PM EDT

Well, The View just became your place to go if you want to hear someone impersonate Marlene Deitrich singing “Take Me Out To The Ballgame.” As the studio audience feigned a few chuckles and collectively thought, Marlene who?, Whoopi Goldberg busted out that comic move soon after being introduced as the new “moderator” for The View, replacing Rosie O’Donnell. Just writing that sentence nearly makes me want to — well, not cry, but laugh sarcastically. Goldberg’s anointment was no big surprise — though The View milked the announcement for 45 minutes, ushering Whoopi on in the final segment. But it reminds us how much O’Donnell has been missed on the show, and how recent substitute guests such as Goldberg and Joan Rivers have been so bland and blah. Goldberg has been coasting for years now on her decades-old reputation for being, as she herself put it, “edgy.” She said this, mind you, while reassuring her new boss Barbara Walters that she would only be “a little edgy” on this show. How deflating. Whenever Goldberg has guested on The View, she’s mustered up some O’Donnell-like sassy attitude, but unlike Rosie, there’s no content to Goldberg’s sass — she doesn’t make riotously funny or trenchant or provocative statements. Given the fact that Whoopi has spent her recent time hosting a radio show, it’s pretty obvious she views The View as a nice, easy gig. Whoopi officially starts the day after Labor Day, Barbara said. Meanwhile, the other shoe is waiting to drop — who’ll be the permanent replacement for the long-absent Star Jones seat? Given the safe choice of Whoopi, I have a feeling Walters — who sure as heck doesn’t want to go through the tumult she did with O’Donnell — will go with someone nice and bland, like frequent guest panelist Sherri Shepherd. In the meantime, take me out to the ballgame, to the movies, to the library: anywhere I don’t have to watch the rest of the summer’s self-congratulation-fest The View will unfurl over the choice of Whoopi Goldberg. Nothing personal, Whoopi.


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