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How Long Will America Continue To Indulge Steve Martin’s Banjo Playing?

Gabe Delahaye | May 21, 2009 - 11:58 am

American Idol is “one of the most popular shows on American television.”
Wikipedia

So then what was Steve Martin doing on last night’s season finale playing the banjo?

Who wants this? Do you want this? Even your mom doesn’t want this.

Look, Steve Martin is an Old God. His body should be dipped in gold and hung in a comedy museum next to Gallagher’s sledgehammer. He literally has nothing left to prove. But some of us still live on planet Earth where the rules are that people get fame and exposure for doing something that someone wants. For as much as I hate Seth MacFarlane, for example, I recognize that he didn’t write himself a check for 100 million dollars. America did that. The reason insufferable hacks are more often rewarded than the genuinely talented is because there’s a HUGE audience for insufferable hacks. But is there a huge audience for a legendary comedian’s painfully earnest BANJO PLAYING? Am I reading the wrong Twitters? Between this and his Saturday Night Live performance of “Mommy, School Bus,” or whatever it was called, I feel like the national debt to Steve Martin’s legacy, which he is collecting in network television broadcasts of “serious” banjo performances, has been more than paid off. We can go back to not pretending like we like this stuff now.