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Chris Hardwick: Singled Out Nerdist

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I remember Chris Hardwick from Singled Out.  I thought he was a cutie then, and still do.  I started watching this show for him.  I stayed because I love it.  It appeals to the improvisor within me.  

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Did you see the picture they put up on the show from the early 2000's before he stopped drinking? I know from his podcast that he calls that person "Peter Hardwick," his fat, alcoholic brother. I didn't realize how much better he looks now.

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Is Chris standing in a damned crater? He looks like he's 10 years old.

 

I don't want to be, but II may be reaching my CH limit on the overly-enthusiastic-and-camera-hog-o-meter.

Edited by lordonia
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Is Chris standing in a damned crater? He looks like he's 10 years old.

 

According to Google Chris is 5'10" (which might be overstating it a tad), while Henry Cavill (standing directly behind him) is 6'1". The fact that Cavill appears to be more than a full head taller than Hardwick leads me to believe that the three actors are standing on a stage or platform of some kind. Chris does look very goofy in that photo, though!

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Yes, kind of--there was some Comic Con thing with re-enacting posters from movies and Chris was in Back to the Future. I saw a few at Hollywood Reporter...the only other one I can think of right now is Nathan Fillion in Star Trek.

Edited by ABay

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According to Google Chris is 5'10" (which might be overstating it a tad), while Henry Cavill (standing directly behind him) is 6'1". The fact that Cavill appears to be more than a full head taller than Hardwick leads me to believe that the three actors are standing on a stage or platform of some kind. Chris does look very goofy in that photo, though!

I think the actors are on a platform, but I will say that I've met Chris Hardwick, and I think 5'10 is wishful thinking on his part.  I'm 5'6, and he was barely taller than I was - I'd say he's 5'8 if he stands up really straight, but probably more like 5'7.  

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It seemed like Chris was making more "single guy" type jokes the last few episodes -- yup, he and Chloe broke up. That's always tough; I wish both of them the best.

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This is not a judgement at all (I swear!), but I didn't realize how much younger than him she is - she just looks older than 25, so I just assumed she was in her 30s.    

 

I know a month or so ago, there had been a couple of posts talking about how rough he was looking - I chalked it up to a busy schedule, but now I bet it was because he was in the midst of the breakup.  

Edited by Princess Sparkle

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CH was HIGH-larious (I thought) on The Meltdown w/ Jonah & Kumail.  He was equally hilarious on @midnight promo-ing it.  He truly cannot tell a clean joke.

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I listened to a couple podcasts at work and, for a guy that's on 17 television shows, lord have mercy he talks so fast! I swear I thought my ipod had somehow sped them up. He's definitely someone who gets carried away.

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I listened to a couple podcasts at work and, for a guy that's on 17 television shows, lord have mercy he talks so fast! I swear I thought my ipod had somehow sped them up. He's definitely someone who gets carried away.

One thing Chris Hardwick definitely has is boundless energy.

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"I used to talk for 2 minutes at the top of the show. Lately it's been 4." Well, on a 21-minute show, that extra 2 minutes DOES seem like a lot more time. I wish they'd go back to the shorter segment because I want to see more of the comedians. (OK, maybe Chris can take some extra time when the Sklar brothers are on...)

 

I do feel that it's perfectly fine for the show to be "with Chris Hardwick" since it's in line with "The Daily" and "Nightly" shows. Now, if you want to talk about ego, there's Jimmy Fallon, changing "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" to "The Tonight Show STARRING Jimmy Fallon" after he took over.

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I guess I'm just over it in general, but Chris' explanation makes me like him even less, with it's generally nitpicky and defensive tone.

 

"Pretty much every other late night show gives its host 2 full SEGMENTS. I don’t think I’m being too selfish about taking a little more time in my show."

 

I disagree. I also don't think he's earned parity with the other Comedy Central late night shows, if he's talking about TDS or even Wilmore's new show. Those hosts entirely carry their programs. He's also nowhere near the same class as the network late night talk shows.

Edited by lordonia
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I've always been a fan of Hardwick, defended him when others tear him down, enjoy his insanity. I listen to The Nerdist, watched the TV show, watch Talking Dead, and At Midnight. But lord, has something switched in his brain the last little while.  

 

I mean, At Midnight is not his show. At least, it never seemed that way until the return in this year. It is not a late night show like he keeps claiming. This isn't Conan or Letterman, Jon Stewart, or Rick Mercer. This isn't even The Soup, even then I would never consider that Joel McHale's show despite him being the only person on it.  This was a faux game show for comedians, those of which are on the panel

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I watched the show for the guests, not for Chris. It's disappointing it's an intentional change to give him more focus. If I wanted more of his viewpoint I'd go to his podcast which is advertised on every episode (or twitter or website or....), but I choose not to because I'm not interested in him.

Edited by Nellise
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It seems like Hardwick got bored being the host and wants to change the format. I feel a little bad for him, because if he was actually funny enough, If don't think anyone would mind him getting more time for a monologue or more active participation in the "games." But the truth is, the show flowed better and was funnier when he was not stealing focus. I feel like it used to be that he facilitated the flow of jokes from the panel. Now I feel like he's carrying on and wasting time and the panel needs to steal a moment to get a joke in between Chris's antics.

 

If they wanted a roundtable for comedians, in which Hardwick was one of the panelists, they could have set it up that way. Or, if they wanted a talk show with Hardwick as the host, they could have used that format. But they chose to model the show after game shows, and a game show host doesn't do what he wants to do. They may make a comment now and then to relieve tension or clarify the game, but basically they are just there to showcase the players. I thought he did a great job of that before. But now, I find myself irritated and impatient with the show and having a hard time committing to sit through it.

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"I used to talk for 2 minutes at the top of the show. Lately it's been 4." Well, on a 21-minute show, that extra 2 minutes DOES seem like a lot more time. I wish they'd go back to the shorter segment because I want to see more of the comedians. (OK, maybe Chris can take some extra time when the Sklar brothers are on...)

 

I do feel that it's perfectly fine for the show to be "with Chris Hardwick" since it's in line with "The Daily" and "Nightly" shows. Now, if you want to talk about ego, there's Jimmy Fallon, changing "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" to "The Tonight Show STARRING Jimmy Fallon" after he took over.

Oh man.  Thumbs up to every last bit of this (including the shot at the annoying Sklars and the even MORE annoying Jimmy Fallon).

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I've always been a fan of Hardwick, defended him when others tear him down, enjoy his insanity. I listen to The Nerdist, watched the TV show, watch Talking Dead, and At Midnight. But lord, has something switched in his brain the last little while.  

 

I mean, At Midnight is not his show. At least, it never seemed that way until the return in this year. It is not a late night show like he keeps claiming. This isn't Conan or Letterman, Jon Stewart, or Rick Mercer. This isn't even The Soup, even then I would never consider that Joel McHale's show despite him being the only person on it.  This was a faux game show for comedians, those of which are on the panel

He co-created it, produces it (I think), and writes on it. I can pretty much say it IS his show.

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He co-created it, produces it (I think), and writes on it. I can pretty much say it IS his show.

Hardwick has identified Tom Lennon as his boss multiple times (and Lennon and his partner Robert Ben Garant's company seem to get the first production card they show at the end, I think), so if Hardwick also has some kind of producer status, it may just be the usual "the main talent gets a production credit" deal. 

 

Which is odd in the sense that Nerdist has become a fairly successful production company otherwise, but I'm guessing Lennon was the one with the Comedy Central street cred when this was all getting put together (seeing as how Reno 911 was one of the breakout shows that originally defined the channel's success).

Edited by Kromm
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Hardwick has identified Tom Lennon as his boss multiple times (and Lennon and his partner Robert Ben Garant's company seem to get the first production card they show at the end, I think), so if Hardwick also has some kind of producer status, it may just be the usual "the main talent gets a production credit" deal. 

 

Which is odd in the sense that Nerdist has become a fairly successful production company otherwise, but I'm guessing Lennon was the one with the Comedy Central street cred when this was all getting put together (seeing as how Reno 911 was one of the breakout shows that originally defined the channel's success).

"To your other ridiculous point, while it's true that Serious Business created the first version of the show (which was only about Twitter), I redeveloped it with them, Funny or Die and Tom and Ben."

"It actually is my show. Tom and Ben aren't there. They just helped develop the original idea, which we all did together. I'm there building the show every tape day with the other writers (same as every late night show) and meeting with them to create segments on non-tape days. Nerdist renders ZERO production services. That was my credit at the end and I gave it to the company."

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"I used to talk for 2 minutes at the top of the show. Lately it's been 4." Well, on a 21-minute show, that extra 2 minutes DOES seem like a lot more time.

 

I wonder if one reason Chris doesn't feel this is a big deal is that the shows are usually much longer than 21 minutes, but are edited down to that for CC. So he's doing a 30-35 minute show where an extra 2 minutes doesn't feel like much, but we're not seeing that version. In the unedited version, he sees the comedians getting the same amount of time as always, but we've lost those 2 minutes.

 

Also, do the guests just have to stand there and awkwardly watch him?

Edited by Nellise
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Wow. I give credit to CH for his well-written response in that reddit entry, but equating himself with late night talk show hosts? @midnight is not a late night talk show. It's a game show. The host is the host, not a featured comedian. If he wants the spotlight, then he should abdicate his position and compete as a guest. (Tom Lennon is one of my absolute favorites.) His grandstanding and camera-hogging is off-putting, and more importantly, unfunny. (Note, that's from "I" and not the royal "we.")

 

While it seems like I have a hate-on for Hardwick, I think it's more that I feel he has of late "betrayed" what I guess are his nerdish roots. On the one hand, for a former self-proclaimed nerd to date models and dress snazzily is good on him, I feel like he's no longer identifiable as a geek. Does one have to eschew the nerd title if one's dweeby interests and fanatacism remain but are covered with the flashy veneer of Hollywood acceptance? It's similar to the end of the seminal Revenge of the Nerds, when all nerds are implored to join the chant... and who's the first person to join Lewis and Gilbert but the hot blonde cheerleader. WTF? "That's OUR word for YOU!!" Hardwick no longer seems one of the nerd masses, but rather a former insider now claiming geekdom. (I'm sure his extensive knowledge of esoteric nerdishness "proves" otherwise, but something just feels wrong.) Perfect example was his "apology" for not liking "Let It Go" or ever seeing the movie. Really? Does he think his audience is going to defend Frozen? Setting up a mass media juggernaut like that movie as a straw man to show how he's "still so unusual" was completely disingenuous. "Sorry, guys, but I just don't like that song!" Strangely, his recent enthusiasm for self-preening and audience reaction reminds me of... Guy Fieri. Which cracks me up in a most delicious way.

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I would have never thought of this as a game show.  It's a late night talk show wrapped up as a game show.  A chance for comedians to show they're funny and poke fun at social media.  I mean, "You win the internet"?   That's not a real prize.  And the "points" are just pretty random.

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Neither is "Karl Kassel's voice on your vociemail" but I don't consider "Wait Wait Don't Tell Me" a talk show, it's a game show for current events. To me, @midnight is a game show for the internet. Along the same lines, the points on Whose Line Is It Anyway are a joke, and I wouldn't consider WLIIA a talk show. It's a comedy show in the form of a game show.

Edited by ABay
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I wouldn't consider either WLIIA or @Midnight to be game shows at all.  I guess I just don't see the big deal with calling @Midnight a talk show.  It's more talk than anything (and more so than WLIIA. I don't know what this Karl Kassel show is, so I can't comment on that).  All the comedians get to plug their stuff and show off their skills.  And I personally don't care if CH now takes 4 minutes in the beginning.  I think I noticed it was a little bit more, but I didn't think it impeded the rest of the show.  Basically I like the show.  

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If they wanted a roundtable for comedians, in which Hardwick was one of the panelists, they could have set it up that way. Or, if they wanted a talk show with Hardwick as the host, they could have used that format. But they chose to model the show after game shows, and a game show host doesn't do what he wants to do. They may make a comment now and then to relieve tension or clarify the game, but basically they are just there to showcase the players. I thought he did a great job of that before. But now, I find myself irritated and impatient with the show and having a hard time committing to sit through it.

 

What you said.

 

At least now I know to FF through the first four minutes.

 

I suppose for me the problem boils down to Chris buying into his own hype (such as it is). I mean, I managed to overlook the hair, the carefully-crafted daily stubble and artfully undone tie, but his bellicose "ownership" of the show is just more ego inflation. He also needs to quit lying about his height.

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I doubt Hardwick's egotism is all that new a thing.  Even if it seems he went back to his roots with Nerdist, remember his original rise to success was on a big live-audience-recorded MTV show, where he no doubt had hanger-oners and all the women he could shake a stick at.  In other words, if he's really the douchebag type to have his dick sucked by a different random fangirl he never calls again, then go and wave his dick metaphorically on air each night, like it's beginning to seem he does, then he's probably long been that guy and it's just becoming more and more obvious.

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I don't think that's a fair assessment of him though. I think that while we're seeing more of him in the front of the show now, he's just doing what he's seen has made him a success for the past 6 years - being a strong host, with a distinct (to him at least) style. After all, his empire and success since 2009 come from hosting, be it his podcasts, Talking Dead/Talking Bad, his BBC gig, and now this. So, while this show is set up slightly differently, I'm sure in his mind, his thought is "why wouldn't I keep doing what I'm doing?" I do think he'll probably adjust how much he's doing at the front of the show though - he may be defending it at the moment, but he's not stupid; if he sees extreme negative responses, l have no doubt he'll adjust. He's done that before on his podcast.

I can't knock the hustle; this is a guy who basically went from having no career to having a self-made booming empire in approximately 6 years. He obviously struggled for quite a while after Singled Out (between having no work, a failed engagement, and being a pretty severe alcoholic), and from all accounts, was pretty miserable on the set of Singled Out because he didn't fit in with the rest of the cast and crew. IMO, I think right now he's finally seeing success for being completely who he is, and he's capitalizing on that.

Edited by Princess Sparkle
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I like Chris as a host. I like him on @Midnight as purely a host, I liked him on Attack of the Show, I think I even liked him on Singled Out (I remember watching it and perhaps not hating it despite how stupid it was). I respect that he's turned his life around so dramatically and has been involved with or created stuff I've enjoyed.

 

But I don't like his opinions (and comedy) because he often comes off to me as thinking he's 100% right and you're stupid if you don't agree with his viewpoint, even though I sometimes do agree with him (kind of a cuddlier Bill Maher). I've made an effort to not go to those places where he does that and now it's intruding on something that I don't think needs it.

 

Perhaps it's what's needed to keep him interested since he seems to like working a million miles an hour and @midnight was taking too much of his time from doing other things. So maybe something I still mostly like is better than losing it altogether, just gotta get the fast-forward ready.

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I can't knock the hustle; this is a guy who basically went from having no career to having a self-made booming empire in approximately 6 years.

 

This is something for his analyst, which I hope he has, but why so much? He has said he hates being off work, and I assume his brain being on constant spin cycle also takes a toll on his romantic relationships. His manic ambition and (over) drive come off more as fear or desperation to me.

 

Huh. I was unaware until this topic started that I even had opinions on Chris, but apparently they've been simmering.

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This is something for his analyst, which I hope he has, but why so much? He has said he hates being off work, and I assume his brain being on constant spin cycle also takes a toll on his romantic relationships. His manic ambition and (over) drive come off more as fear or desperation to me.

 

Huh. I was unaware until this topic started that I even had opinions on Chris, but apparently they've been simmering.

 

I (not a therapist/analyst, but someone who has had ample therapy) have several friends who are recovering addicts; a good number of them have sublimated their addiction into their work to the degree that the bolded section notes (specifically the "manic... (over-)drive").

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I still mostly like Chris and don't have a problem with him taking more time at the top of the show, as long as it's funny. But neither the bit with his mom nor the SkyMall song were funny. Also, telling the audience that he's dating a Hearst was unnecessary and certainly doesn't help combat the new image people are starting to have of him.

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All right, I realize it means nothing but it cheeses me off that lately the funniest person on the panel has been eliminated.

 

Well, it does mean I don't get to hear one last joke from them.

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For me the defining bit that started down the road that's damaged @midnight and Hardwicked it a bit too much was how they allowed the "wipe, wipe, wipe" stuff to become a "thing".

 

You could tell from those early episode that Hardwick was enjoying how the bit moved the focus to him, even if just for that moment, and it should have been more of a warning/signal to us.

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I went to the Benson Movie Interruption of Twighlight: Breaking Dawn Part 1 this Saturday at the Castro Theatre as part of S.F. Sketchfest. Chris Hardwick was one of the interrupters, and probably had the most consistently funny lines during the film. It seemed, though that he and Arden Myrin were the ones, along with Doug that spoke the most. Sadly, due to prior commitments, I wasn't able to see Part 2 on Sunday. It makes sitting through those films actually enjoyable. 

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I have felt totally differently about Chris Hardwick ever since I watched the Comedy Central Presents... "Hard and Phirm" stand up special. I only saw it a few months ago. I'm not sure when it was shot, but I don't think it was any time recently.

 

Anyway, he and another guy whose last name is Firman (or Phirman, I suppose) sing songs that are really funny, and sometimes thoughtful and clever. It's a fun act all around, and gives him a little more depth than just hosting other people's stuff, or talking about other people's stuff, offers. I can finally understand why he was trying to make @midnight more of a showcase for his own humor, even though I generally think the show works better when he doesn't do that. It's too bad his stand up (silly song) career didn't take off and/or he didn't get more of that other stuff out there. It seems to be a pretty deep thread in his work, though, to care about "issues" and especially sexism, though, so good for him.

 

The shouty rants on @midnight don't bother me as much as they bother some viewers, even though I do get tired when the show bogs down with them. But after seeing him do his own act, I am a little less thinking he's just showboating for attention and more thinking maybe he really does have a passion for issues and wants to express that for its own sake, at least to a greater extent than I had previously thought. Hmmn.

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I saw Hard & Phirm 10 years ago at Cobb's Comedy Club in San Francisco -- they were opening for someone else (Patton Oswalt maybe?). I had never heard of Chris Hardwick at the time (didn't watch "Singled Out"), but I do remember that they did a number called "Rodeohead" which was a bluegrass/country medley of Radiohead songs. I was a huge Radiohead fan at the time so I found it hilarious.

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If you want to see real evidence of Chris being kind of... dim... watch some of his Comic-Con hosting.

For example: Hosting the Doctor Who panel and talking to a panel filled with THREE Scots and only one English person, he kept asking about reactions in "England". Patiently they'd reply back to him using "British" and "Britain", but it seemed to go right over Chris' thick head.

Oh, same panel, he kept bouncing back and forth between saying "Season" and "Series". Which isn't that big a deal, and unlike the "England" thing he DID seem aware of it and kept trying to correct himself, but... come on Chris. How hard is it to pick just ONE. EITHER ONE would do.

And he made some real bone headed moves in the Star Wars Force Awakens Panel. Most of it just talking too damn much--although to give him credit at one point he did say something like "nobody cares what I think" (when a questioner in the audience included him in a question).

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Those weren't exactly his sharpest moments but he was working quite a bit at Comic-Con.  I've certainly done worse when I was tired.

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Truthfully I frequently don't recognize some of the 'comics' on the show and find a lot of their jokes childish. I like Chris and if I don't always agree with him at least he seems bright.

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Interested to see if serial monogmist, Chris, actually makes it to the alter but well played Hearst Corporation when 60 plus years ago negotiating the tax write off donating Hearst Castle but keeping a home on the estate for the family and that the family has full access when closed.

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Interested to see if serial monogmist, Chris, actually makes it to the alter but well played Hearst Corporation when 60 plus years ago negotiating the tax write off donating Hearst Castle but keeping a home on the estate for the family and that the family has full access when closed.

Do we now need to update the thread title.  (I know it's from one of his show names, but anyway...).

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