Tuesday, October 19, 2004 Updated: October 20, 6:13 PM ET
Late Word: Will the Curse reverse?
Compiled by Page 3
With real life news reading funnier than made-up comedy bits, the Late Night kings are loving every minute of it.
Page 3's top shelf team (OK, it's one dude out on the west coast, but he's still top shelf) compiled the best sports comedy riffs from the past week.
Being in the middle of the pile-on is a scary situation in itself.
"The Daily Show with Jon Stewart"
Rob Corddry analyzes the Curse of the Bambino, beginning with grainy historical baseball footage from the turn of the century.
Corddry voiceover: "From 1903 to 1918, the Boston Red Sox won five World Series ... through good pitching, great hitting and hilarious-style running. But in 1919, the Red Sox sold Babe Ruth to the rival New York Yankees ... (Shows clip of ball rolling through Bill Buckner's legs in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series.) and they haven't won a World Series since.
"They call it the Curse of the Bambino. A curse that Lee Gavin says he has broken."
Gavin: "On Aug. 31, I went to the Red Sox game at Fenway Park. It was my friend's birthday party. And in the bottom of the fourth inning Manny Ramirez, my favorite player, sliced one down and knocked out to of my teeth.
Voiceover of a re-enactment: "The (expletive) curse is lifted!"
Corddry voiceover: "Why do Lee's broken teeth lift the Curse of the Bambino? It's because of where he lives."
Gavin: "Babe Ruth lived in this house from 1916 to 1926. He built this house for his wife."
Corddry: "Where are your parents?"
Gavin: "My mom is in New York right now, and my dad's on business."
Corddry: "So they're not here?"
Corddry: "You wanna get high?"
Corddry voiceover: "Journalists jumped on the story and desperate Red Sox fans have jumped on the bandwagon because if the Curse of the Bambino is lifted it may be the watershed moment in lifting other curses.
"Like the taboo tiki that haunted the Bradys for three full episodes. Dick Cheney's heated exchange with Pat Leahy. And who could forget the seven-year losing streak of the Chicago Mirror-breakers?
"But there are skeptics."
Boston Herald columnist Mike Barnicle: "The real curse, if there is a curse, with the Red Sox is the curse of being owned by a bunch of crackers from Georgia.
"The Red Sox were the last franchise to have a black ballplayer."
Corddry voiceover: "But if systemic racism is a curse, there would be a pox on the entire city of Boston."
Corddry: "So you don't believe there's a Curse of the Bambino?"
Barnicle: "Yeah, there's no curse. The Bambino was a big, fat bastard who could hit a home run and play the piano."
Corddry: "So you're saying poor Lee Gavin, a 16-year-old kid, put his face in front of a ball for nothing?"
Corddry voiceover: "Local fans have their own opinions."
(Two fans are shown at a bar, talking to Corddry.)
First fan: "I've caught many balls in the face. Look at my face ..."
Second fan, interrupting: "Ha, ha, ha. You've just said on national TV that you've caught more balls in the face than anybody. Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha ... That'll break the curse!"
Corddry voiceover: "But if there's no curse, how do you explain this?"
Gavin: "Since Babe Ruth was traded from the Red Sox, the Yankees have won 26 World Series and the Red Sox have won none."
Corddry: "Twenty-six, isn't that an interesting number?"
Gavin: (Looks puzzled, says nothing.)
Corddry: "Think about it, two sixes ... Six, six, almost the number of the beast."
Gavin: "The beast?"
Corddry: "You know, the evil one."
Gavin: "I don't know what you're talking about."
Corddry: "You don't listen to Iron Maiden?"
Gavin: "I don't know who Iron Maiden is."
Corddry: "You don't know who Iron Maiden is?
Corddry: "You're a 16-year-old kid living in Massachusetts. If you don't know Judas Priest or Iron Maiden, how are you gonna worship the devil?"
Gavin: (With a blank look on his face, he just calmly sits, saying nothing.)
Corddry: (Shakes his head and sighs.)
Corddry voiceover: Back at the bar, everyone has their own theories."
First fan: "Maybe if we all stop drinking, the Red Sox will win the World Series."
Corddry voiceover: "But after 36 beers and 16 shots of Jager, we came up with a better idea.
(Shows interviewees roughhousing in the bar.)
Second fan: "You can finally come on Corddry and slap me in the face as hard as you can ..."
First fan: "Slap him as hard as you can."
Second fan: "Maybe the Red Sox will win the (expletive) World Series."
First fan: "I'm not kidding, as hard as you can."
Second fan: "Go ahead ... Come on Corddry!"
First fan: "As hard ad you can. As hard as you can!"
(By now the whole bar is screaming at Corddry to slap the guy. Camera pans back to Corddry and the two fans. Corddry then slaps the guy who was asking for it.)
Voiceover, in a repeated voiceover from earlier: The (expletive) curse is lifted."
Corddry: "Or is it?" (Finishing with a photo of Babe Ruth in a Red Sox uniform.)
"Late Show with David Letterman"
"At 1 a.m. I was drinking a beer in my underwear, watching the Yankees and Red Sox, and then they threw me out of Hooters." (Oct. 18)
"The Tonight Show with Jay Leno"
"Gas is so expensive. Today I saw Kobe and Phil Jackson car pooling." (Oct. 18)
"It is now week six of the NFL season. We still have no professional football in L.A. It's like we're in Miami." (Oct. 18)
"The Late Late Show" with guest host Tom Caltaliano
"In sports, Barry Bonds' personal trainer told reporters over the weekend that the Giants slugger used undetectable steroids in 2003. Officials first became suspicious after Bonds took a drug test and his urine came out Hulk green." (Oct. 18)