Public aghast as Brian Williams desperately neighs and hee-haws
NEW YORK — ‘NBC Nightly News’ viewers watched in fascinated horror Wednesday night as handsome, blue-eyed anchorman Brian Williams, 55, literally turned himself into an ass before their very eyes, live on TV and all within five minutes.
NBC management expressed hope that Brian Williams can at least sire a decent replacement. However, they have also hinted that they may have him put down to avoid the pension costs.
Williams’ unexpected transformation occurred during what was intended to be an apology for lying in a news broadcast about his experiences in Iraq as a war correspondent in 2003.
One of his best-regarded reports, which he recently revived, included a vivid account of a near-fatal helicopter crash in a hail of enemy bullets. On March 26, 2003, NBC news broadcast “Target Iraq: Helicopter NBC’s Brian Williams Was Riding In Comes Under Fire.”
It turns out however that Williams didn’t and wasn’t and hadn’t and shouldn’t and, as those who were there now attest, couldn’t. Busted by one of the actual participants, who became annoyed by Williams repeating the story at a football game last Friday, the popular news anchor now admits that in fact he invented the whole thing.
He was really traveling in a Chinook far behind the one shot down, was never fired upon, never crashed, and was never in any danger.
But even before getting to his apology, as a close examination of the video shows, Brian Williams’ features slowly alter. Right off the bat he assures the viewer that he did ‘it’ — not yet specified — for the very best, the purest, of motives. His reviving the report at the football game was just “a bungled attempt by me to thank one special veteran,” he said.
You can’t really blame him then, this implies. What’s more, what he referred to wasn’t a real lie, or even a bungle, not really. No, it was just an unfortunate failure of memory, a perfectly innocent, understandable human error.
“I made a mistake in recalling the events of 12 years ago,” Williams explained. He had imagined himself in the downed copter and then later was inexplicably unable to separate fantasy from reality.
As Brian Williams continues his narrative, muddying it with post-crash irrelevancies, details and observations, his true nature appears finally to reveal itself.
It’s like The Picture of Dorian Gray. The more he pretends that he cannot understand why he did what he did — air a dramatic story that helped him on his way to Tom Brokaw’s soon-to-be-vacant chair — the more his features appear to distort, like Pinocchio’s nose.
By the end he is unrecognizable as the loved and trusted rapper of just a few weeks ago.
People are also wondering: How will his good friend, Jon Stewart, handle this story on The Daily Show?