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Actor vs. actor: a debate proposal.

Actor vs. actor: a debate proposal. (photo)

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The Huffington Post, god bless ’em, has long made itself an easy target for irate conservatives by providing a platform for every celebrity (with or without a ghostwriter, we’ll never know) to mouth off about the causes near and dear to their heart.

This turgid manifesto-driven stuff is apparently a fantastic traffic driver, despite having nothing novel to offer up. But no one, it seems, has figured out that they can take it to the next level by staging actual debates between actors. Here’s an example: Michael Douglas (not a HuffPo contributor) has recently announced that he’s now a supporter of nuclear power.

This is some thirty years after Douglas produced and starred in “The China Syndrome,” the single most effective anti-nuclear power movie ever made. Now, he’s announced that having “dealt with the realities of global warming, and what the alternatives are… I do support nuclear power now. I wish there were other alternatives, but I don’t think there are.”

Michael Douglas, meet Alec Baldwin, who has some things to say about nuclear power and some very impressive name-dropping (opening words: “Sitting in Bill Richardson’s office while he was Secretary of Energy under President Clinton…”). As far as they go, Douglas and Baldwin are two of the better informed politicized stars. I say we put them up on the stage of Radio City Music Hall and let them hash it out. Given how good celebrities are for HuffPo, there’s clearly a demand to see them in any context — even expounding on policy things no one cares about otherwise.

02242010_ali.jpgBut wait, you say: why keep all the debates strictly in the liberal camp? Can’t we have a discussion along the full spectrum of American politics? Well, it’d certainly be trickier, but it can be done — the trick is to match the relative celebrity and dogmatism of the opposing forces equally. Jon Voight vs. Douglas, say, would be pretty much a fair fight. The opening round could be between some lower-tier types. How about the equally virulent Steven Weber for the left (“Be all the tea-bagging ass-hats fear, as they bathe themselves in the ghastly glow of Fox Noose”) vs. Michael Moriarty (“Progressives are those pro-abortionists who wrap the veil of women’s rights around legalized murder”). And watch the fur fly.

Hey, it’s no worse than what’s already on the internet, and it’d certainly be more fun to watch than read. They don’t even have to write their own talking points! Let’s take it to the streets, guys.

[Photos: “The China Syndrome,” Columbia Pictures, 1979; Jon Voight as Howard Cosell in “Ali,” Columbia Pictures, 2001]

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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