Bill Maher: Preparing Farewell to TV?
While the main attractions in the battle over late night were CBS's David Letterman and ABC's Ted Koppel, one of the side attractions has finally spoken up: "Politically Incorrect" host Bill Maher. Though it was Koppel who immediately stood to be replaced (and in all likelihood still be) had Dave jumped to the rival network, Maher's future also has been hovering under a giant question mark. The problems began when he made what many considered inappropriate (albeit sarcastic) remarks about how "cowardly" U.S. forces were compared to the actions of the Sept. 11 suicide hijackers. In the Pacific Northwest recently to do some live appearances, Maher, 46, spoke to the Seattle Times, which asked him point blank about his TV show's chances for survival. "Look, I'm not gonna lie," he responded, "I knew back in September our days were numbered. But what is a little galling is that for six years on ABC, we had to live with 'Nightline' as the ultimate sacred cow. You could never ask Ted Koppel to do anything. He never asked viewers to watch 'Politically Incorrect' after his show; instead, he'd tell them to go to nightline.com. Suddenly, he's not a sacred cow -- he's a slaughtered cow." As for the rumor that he's thinking of abandoning TV for radio, Maher told the Times: "People see me as somebody who speaks a commentary -- somebody who, whatever blows I may take from it, is not gonna pull punches. The best place for that may be radio."
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