ABC, NBC Play Moral Midgets for Access to Charlie Sheen

The saddest media bias on display this week was the desperate hunger and thirst for that slice of Ratings Heaven known as Charlie Sheen's Continuing Moral Collapse. He's been All Access Charlie, granting high Nielsens wherever he goes, speaking of how he is High on Himself and "bi-winning" with his two "goddesses" camped at his abode. Network interviewers have tried not to alienate their guest with tough questions. Washington Post TV writer Lisa de Moraes ably brought her trademark snark to this amoral parade. First there was ABC's 20/20 with Andrea Canning on Tuesday night:

"It's no secret that you have an affinity for porn stars," Canning told Sheen.

"Well, I mean, wow, listen to that statement," Sheen joshed back.

"Why?" Canning asked, speaking for us all.

"Well, look at what they do - look at what I do. Duh...They're the best at what they do and I'm the best at what I do and together it's like, it's on! Sorry, Middle America, yeah, I said it."

"Is it the same for prostitutes - is it that it's good sex?" Canning continued.

"Who wants to deal with all the small talk and nonsense? You're paying for something that eliminates that. It makes sense to me," Sheen explained.

The Post writer then added that on Wednesday, when Sheen went live on "Today" with a very agreeable Jeff Rossen, "the sex goddesses had been transformed into Mary Poppins." (Notice that NBC didn't even put "goddesses" in quotes on screen.) After underlining how Sheen (that regular Ward Cleaver) was somehow shocked or traumatized that his toddler twins were removed from the Goddess House after their mother pressed to have them returned to her, Rossen simply wanted to know how Sheen's dreamy life worked:

"We run errands, we eat, we play with the kids. We watch movies - I watch a lot of 'Two and a Half Men'," Goddess No. 1 told NBC newsman Rossen.

Rossen began to grill the girls:

"Do you love his kids?"

"Are you kidding? I was just up with them right now, " gushed Goddess No. 2. "I didn't want to put him down."

"Is this pretty normal? I mean there are pictures of the kids on the fridge!" Rossen persisted.

"Aside from the days when we sit with the gold palm fronds and fan him -- ," Goddess No. 1 began.

"Hey! Don't run with that! Do not run with that!" Sheen joked -- but ominously, we thought.

Goddess No. 1 turned to the camera:

"I'm joking," she said, raising her right hand.

Yup, it seems there's virtually no role Sheen can't throw himself into.. And the media laps up and cries for more.

"That was amazing!" media analyst Steve Adubato raved of Sheen's Frantic Father performance, after it was over, to "Today" Den Mom, Meredith Vieira.

"I was prepared to come in and say 'out of control, ridiculous, get him off the air - I also wonder about us when we put him on the air," Adubato confided.

"I got to tell you, I just saw a father in pain...It seemed very clear that his children...are his priority." 

Can a skull get any thicker? Adubato also advertises himself as "Steve Adubato, Ph. D.," but he flunked this test.This only underlines that "Media Analyst Steve Adubato" is a moral blank slate who will say absolutely anything to get on the Today show, even if it desperately calls for a laugh track.  

Earlier: Adubato, Ph. D. claims on Today that Sarah Palin's "reality show" life is "not good for the kid" that is her grandson in the Levi-Bristol custody dispute.

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis