Soviet Communism as Fashion Statement -- Again

On Monday, for the second straight weekday, Access Hollywood's New York correspondent, Tim Vincent, a veteran of the BBC, sported a hammer and sickle T-shirt as he introduced a story. Just as on Friday's show, as documented in an April 15 NewsBusters item, though he wore a jacket over the red shirt with the symbol of the regime which murdered tens of millions and oppressed hundreds of millions more for decades, a gold hammer and sickle was clearly visible inside a gold-outlined red star which, sans the hammer and sickle, would match the Soviet's Red Army emblem. On Friday's edition of the half-hour entertainment news program produced by NBC and aired on all NBC-owned stations (as well as other stations across the country), viewers saw Vincent in the shirt as he led into a preview of the American Dreamz movie. On Monday, viewers couldn't avoid him in the shirt as co-host Nancy O'Dell set him up and he introduced a piece on his role as an extra in an upcoming Nicole Kidman film.

Given Vincent's identical attire and the same background of Rockefeller Plaza, NBC's headquarters, I'd presume both segments were taped at the same time last week.

Video clip from April 17 (23 seconds): Real (760 KB) or Windows Media (880 KB)
Video clip from April 14 (20 seconds): Real (660 KB) or Windows Media (750 KB)

Midway into co-host Nancy O'Dell's April 17 set up of Vincent, the show cut to a spit screen with Vincent in the communist shirt: "Next year, Nicole Kidman will star, alongside Daniel Craig, in The Visiting, a re-make of sci-fi classic Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Tim Vincent not only got on the set, but was an extra, as well. Tim."

Tim Vincent in full screen from Manhattan, with Rockefeller Plaza in the background: "Nancy, what an addition to my growing film resume: Acting with Nicole Kidman. My first job on the set: Breaking that news to Nicole."

The program then cut to a story, narrated by Vincent, which showed him on a movie set as he wore a white button-down shirt with a dark suit.

The April 15 NewsBusters posting recounted:
Tim Vincent, the Britain-born New York correspondent for Access Hollywood, sported a hammer and sickle T-shirt on Friday's show as he stood in front of NBC's Rockefeller Plaza complex and introduced a piece on American Dreamz, the movie takeoff of American Idol. Though he wore a jacket over the red shirt with the symbol of the regime which murdered tens of millions and oppressed hundreds of millions more for decades, a gold hammer and sickle was clearly visible inside a red star. The gold-outlined red star, sans the hammer and sickle, matches the Soviet's Red Army emblem. I don't get it. Is this some kind of cool statement with thirtysomethings, elite New Yorkers or Brits? Or is it just part of some promotion for an upcoming movie? Imagine the proper outrage that would explode if he had worn a Nazi swastika. I put "hammer and sickle t-shirt" into the Copernic search engine and though I did not find the exact shirt adorned by Vincent, I was shocked to find a couple of dozen sites which sell hammer and sickle T-shirts -- and mugs too.

Vincent, a veteran of the BBC as detailed in his posted bio, is also a contributor of celebrity news for NBC's Today show. Access Hollywood is produced by NBC at its Burbank facility and is carried in the early evening by all the NBC-owned stations -- and by affiliates of NBC and other networks in other cities.

Viewers of the April 14 Access Hollywood saw Tim Vincent for 15 seconds with his communist T-shirt as he introduced this story: "With some 30 million people tuning in every week for American Idol, it was only a matter of time before the big screen cashed in. So get ready for American Dreamz, complete with a British gent that everybody loves to hate. Why do they always pick on the Brits?"

Access Hollywood then went to the story narrated by Vincent which included some on-camera time for him, wearing a black shirt, as he interviewed Hugh Grant, who plays the Simon Cowell character.
Brent Baker
Brent Baker
Brent Baker is the Steven P.J. Wood Senior Fellow and VP for Research and Publications at the Media Research Center