Alec Baldwin might be a fixture of the most recent seasons of Saturday Night Live as the show routinely lampoons Donald Trump, but that doesn't mean he appreciates all aspects of late night TV getting roundly political.
On Wednesday, Baldwin chided late night hosts John Oliver and Stephen Colbert — of Last Week With John Oliver and Late Night with Stephen Colbert, respectively — of turning their programs into "grand juries."
Baldwin wrote on Twitter, "Talk shows were once promotional pit stops for some blithe chit chat about movies, etc. Now the likes of @iamjohnoliver and @StephenAtHome have flipped that and they are beginning to resemble grand juries."
Talk shows were once promotional pit stops for some blithe chit chat about movies, etc. Now the likes of @iamjohnoliver and @StephenAtHome have flipped that and they are beginning to resemble grand juries.— ABFoundation (@ABFalecbaldwin) December 6, 2017
Baldwin's words closely follow Michael Rappaport's criticism of Oliver's decision (a video which Baldwin re-tweeted before making his own remarks) to bring up sexual misconduct allegations against actor Dustin Hoffman at an anniversary screening of Wag the Dog. Rappaport dinged the host for not discussing the matter privately and instead initiating the conversation during the cast panel.
As for why Colbert was included in Baldwin's criticism, well, some suspect the inclusion may have to do with Colbert's many segments covering the #MeToo movement, including asking Ben Affleck about accusations lobbied against him during what would've otherwise been a mere puff promotional interview for Justice League.
"I'm pro for people being punished through a due process of law. I'm against people asserting that the process begins and ends with accusations only," Baldwin added on Twitter.
Reactions to Baldwin's comments have been mixed, but many take issue with what he may or may not be advocating for, in terms of late show styles:
BooHoo .@ABFalecbaldwin. Viewers don't need your chit chat promo stops. We get 20 versions of them from morning shows. Late night is about substance now, and we are better for it. Try and not call people little piggies and you may get some chit chat.— Michael Latham 🎄 (@tempusfugitive) December 6, 2017
So, to be clear, you'd rather return to the useless, anodyne pablum of yesteryear instead of the cogent, topical and insightful discussion of today? Interesting take, Alec.— Ryan Knowles (@ImRyanKnowles) December 6, 2017
Notice, if you will, that I don't express a preference. If I could bottle the sanctimony here...— ABFoundation (@ABFalecbaldwin) December 6, 2017
Considering Alec Baldwin himself is reportedly in contention for his own talk show at ABC, perhaps Baldwin was simply making a pitch for his own prospective program to steer clear of such weighty subjects.