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Donald Trump Jr. gets his moment in the glare of late-night TV

Tuesday was Donald Trump Jr.'s day in the glare of comedy. In advance of the New York Times' plan to publish a series of emails he exchanged with Rob Goldstone detailing a Russian offer for dirt on Hillary Clinton and Trump's delighted willingness to receive it, the president's son released them himself.

It was news late-night hosts were themselves visibly delighted to receive – the jokes didn't even need to write themselves. It was enough merely to recount the facts in detail. (But there were jokes, too.)

"Do you guys realize how bigly that is?" asked an obviously amused Trevor Noah on "The Daily Show." "This is the best comedy show ever .… This two-legged brain foreclosure thought that the best way to get out of this mess would be to jump into it himself.

"I can sort of see his reasoning here," said Noah. "Trump Jr. thought if he could be transparent, unlike 'Crooked Hillary,' ... people would be like, 'Huh, what an honest guy.' The only problem is, once you read the emails ... they prove the collusion that Junior's been denying all along."

"Today was one of those days," said Jimmy Kimmel on "Jimmy Kimmel Live. "I woke up, I cracked my neck, I brushed my teeth, I looked in the mirror and I thought, 'Boy, am I glad I'm not Donald Trump Jr.' I have that thought about three times a week, but today I said it out loud."

Kimmel compared the younger Donald to "the guy at work who opens the obviously fake document and now everyone in the office has a virus on their computer.

"If there's any lesson to be learned from this," Kimmel concluded, "it's that no one should use email for anything, ever, at all."

Noting that a lawyer hired by Trump Jr. had "in the past represented members of the Mafia," he compared the Trumps to "the Corleone family, if all of them were Fredo." Poor Fredo, fated to be forever mocked.

There was fun to be had, too, across the networks, with Goldstone's unappealing array of social media selfies showing him in various strange hats. (He appears comical enough without them.)

"Look at this person, he's a real Snapchat filter," Noah called him. "He looks like one of those character actors with a bunch of different looks on his head shot – 'I'm a beauty queen!' or 'I'm a sea captain!'"

It was an unusually big night for Stephen Colbert, who had not only this news to play with, but POTUS Twitter targets Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough as guests. ("What the what?" was Brzezinski's reaction to the day's big story).

Also on the show: "Lord of the Rings" actor Andy Serkis – Colbert loves him some "LOTR" – who read Trump tweets in the voice of Gollum.

In his opening monologue, Colbert brought out "The Late Show Figure-It-Out-a-Tron" (it's a chalkboard) to graph the situation.

"All we have to do is connect the dots to see where this is going," he said, arriving at a cartoon of Trump Jr. behind bars. And he mocked the father's brief defense of his son as a "high-quality person."

"Top-shelf son," he said in the president's voice. "Thinking of having him gold-leafed. Paid for the undercoating. Tremendous."

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