Dear Alec Baldwin, MSNBC: What Did You Expect?

Dear Alec Baldwin, MSNBC: What Did

Actor turned cable host's run-ins with paparazzi as sad as they are predictable

It would be easier to feel sorry for Alec Baldwin and MSNBC if their latest string of shared headaches wasn’t so woefully predictable.

Baldwin, like a lot of celebrities, doesn’t appreciate having cameras shoved in his face, especially when their children are involved. So this morning, he confronted a reporter from the local Fox station in a threatening manner, warning him not to be there when Baldwin left with his wife and kid. The non-incident — lamented with crocodile tears by the show’s morning anchors — follows Baldwin’s blow-up at a photographer and use of what sure sounded like an anti-gay slur, for which he later apologized.

Now MSNBC is inevitably going to get pressed about whether it wants to be associated with Baldwin, who hosts a weekly program on the network that replaced an hour of its weekend prison documentaries, while the actor’s outbursts will only make harassing him that much more profitable and tantalizing to the TMZ feeders of the world, who live for exactly that sort of raw moment. (UPDATE: The network announced a two-week suspension of Baldwin’s program, which, in spin-control terms, is the equivalent of slapping a band-aid on an open wound, and hoping the heat blows over and the media move on to some fresh outrage.)

To which one can only ask the following:

Of Baldwin: Did you really think hosting a show on MSNBC, in this politically polarized environment, wouldn’t attract scads more attention — not just from the tabloid media that feasts on you, but the right-wing media that despises your politics? Is the platform, filling an hour Lawrence O’Donnell couldn’t be bothered to work, really worth the headaches?

Of MSNBC: Was the fleeting headline associated with attracting a star to your network in such a limited capacity worth all the fuss? Did anyone over there read up on Baldwin’s history, or recognize that despite being a talented actor and an extremely articulate one in discussing politics, he has a history of fracases of this sort, which usually results in phone calls at odd hours, asking for comment? Were the meager business benefits, if any, of having a weekly Baldwin program justified by the burst of publicity, and did anyone bother to check with the PR department before entering into this arrangement?

As stated, Baldwin should be able to walk down a public street without being bothered or molested. But for a star — particularly one who braves the political arena — that’s not the world we live in, and lamenting the fact, or shouting at photographers, won’t change it.

You guys did know all of that, right?

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  1. charcramer says:

    NBC never looks at the big picture, only the quick fix. A 7th grader could have predicted the Alec Baldwin hiring would have been short-lived and drama-heavy. NBC never considers the long-term damage to the brand when they make their decisions. They apparently think any publicity is good. They have lost all credibility.

  2. dydx says:

    …”the right wing media that despises your politics”….

    Gee Bry…why don’t you mention the “left wing media” that gives him a pass for calling his daughter a “pig” just because she didn’t call him when he expected? Or the “left wing media”‘s wet noodle lashing when ever Baldwin uses “fag” or “queen” in a demeaning manner?

    And his apology? Please. You are VERY mistaken. He later retracted it on HufPo, saying that he never said the word faggot.

    Nice subltle cheerleading, BryLow. And opportunistic Fox bashing too.

    It is…sadly…very predictable.

  3. Alec Baldwin is just a regular, red blooded American man, remember the kind we had before political correctness – the kind the girls swooned for at the movies…. John Wayne, Frank Sinatra on and on. Scratch the surface or attend any private party in America and you’ll hear worse…. Big Brother strikes again

  4. Ned Nedson says:

    Baldwin said he would leave America if Bush was elected. Perhaps he should follow Obama’s example and belatedly make good on a promise.

  5. Peter Rabbit says:

    What Baldwin needs is someone to teach him some manners. It may involve some ass-kicking which he deserves and is long over due.

  6. Mezzo Betsy says:

    Brian, you miss the point of Alec Baldwin’s tirade and suspension altogether. This is not a paparazzi issue–though it is certainly true that: a) photogs are incredibly annoying and sometimes dangerous in their persistence, and b) if you’re a celebrity you have no choice but to deal with them. Plenty of celebrities have good relationships with the paparazzi, especially where the privacy of their children are concerned. The real issue here is Baldwin’s inability to control himself or his mouth–the same mouth that spews homophobic slurs regularly at photographers is the same that arrogantly tweeted crap when asked to put away an electronic device on a plane, and left an inappropriately demeaning voicemail for his then tween daughter. Whether or not his homophobia is real, at the very least the man has anger management issues, and, more likely, a sociopathic behavior disorder at most. That is what MSNBC should have understood about taking on this ticking time bomb and giving him another forum for his raging narcissism. Seriously, who DIDN’T see it coming?

  7. Dena says:

    Why does the public have the right to invade to this degree. If someone says no, stop, go away, why cant we respect that. Those peoe harrassing Baldwin should have charges. And his wife with child. He should have space to accomodate and care for his family. The paparatzi were harrassing imo..

  8. roboslater says:

    Alec Baldwin, Chris Matthews, Ed Schultz, Al Sharpton … all just obvious symptoms of the disease.

  9. RedRiver says:

    I watched Baldwin’s disgusting behavior on TV tonight. The man needs psychiatric help badly.

  10. Craig says:

    Good job, Brian! Thanks.

  11. If he wasn’t a person who bursts into these vulgar words at a drop of a hat, they wouldn’t follow him. He makes their day and their living. He clearly has anger and mental problems. His actions are not mature. He looks like the unhappiest man alive. It shows on his face and in his walk. He is aging beyond his years. His wife loves the publicity. She is finally getting her 15 minutes of fame. Not a terribly impressive woman.

  12. vanv says:

    I could never watch a show that has never hosted an African American who does he think he is? Go back to during Capital One commercials had fighting with TMZ

  13. If you don’t like the spot light, then just disappear. Please Just Disappear! You were once an actor and you crossed over to a personality and when people see you or hear you speak you are now appearing on a different plain. This level has brought focus on your opinions and not your talent. Just ask Mel Gibson or Charlie Sheen for example. Two talented actors who let their personal problems pull them down. Ignore and move on and keep your opinions to yourself until you do decide to run for public office, otherwise it doesn’t count.

  14. Harley Quin says:

    Alec needs to be committed to a psychiatric ward for a complete evolution. This man is a danger to himself and others around him.

  15. Jim says:

    Please! He banged that woman who is stalking him and now going to jail.

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