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Liveblogging Oprah's interview with Madonna

14587__madonna_lOMG so excited: Someone is finally going to explain to me how it is that Madonna can adopt an "orphan" that still has a dad!  And the person who is going to explain that?  Oprah!  Also helping her explain?  Madonna!  This deserves a liveblog, so strap in, kiddies. It’s time for another episode of "When Celebrity Philanthropy Attacks!"

4:00 Thanks for the time and temperature, Commerce Bank!

4:00:16 Okay literally my first impression of this episode is, Is Oprah wearing pants? It’s kinda fuzzy on the screen and she’s got this bright red top and then… well, it looks like Oprah’s not wearing pants, ok?

4:00:27 "The Adoption Controversy. Madonna’s side of the story." Well, thank god someone is giving this poor woman a chance to finally, finally open up and speak her mind.

4:00:40 Wait. We’re getting Madonna and the Dixie Chicks today? Dear me! That is quite a lot of Women Conservatives Love To Hate for one tiny little hour of television!

4:01:19 Madonna is calling in via satellite??  Oh, now I see: The Dixie Chicks were supposed to have the whole hour, weren’t they?

4:01:23 Madonna’s answer to Oprah’s "how are you?" is, "Well, uh, um, Thank you for asking me to do the show."

4:01:31 Ooh, and it’s not getting any less awkward: "I wanted to be clear up front that — I’m very grateful for you — give me this chance to — uh — not defend…" etc. Oh, this is already the most fun I’ve had in days.

4:01:42 FYI: Today’s British Accent Alert level is orange.

4:01:59 What’s really surprised Madonna is how great her children are with young, possibly-illegally-adopted David. Because lemme tell ya, they treat the help like ass.

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Madonna's crucifixion act won't 'Live to Tell' on NBC

It’s not like I was looking forward to seeing Madonna sing "Live to Tell" while mounted on a disco-mirrored crucifix anyway. Madge’s martyr complex may be the most tiresome element of her persona. Still, that may have been the only thing that was going to get the curious to tune in to her Nov. 22 concert special on NBC. Now that the network has announced the controversial imagery won’t be shown (the concert has been re-edited, apparently with Madonna’s reluctant acquiescence), the special has lost its biggest ratings draw.

The decision may not make sense on practical grounds, but then NBC’s game lately is entirely defensive (and not at all offensive, in any sense of the word). This is also the network that caved earlier this year on The Book of Daniel; the surprise isn’t that they backtracked on their earlier assertions that Madonna could keep the crucifix sequence but that they agreed to air it in the first place.

What irks me is that the same people who complained that NBC didn’t showthose Danish Mohammed cartoons are now praising the network forcensoring Madonna. I’m guessing that NBC runs more offensive-to-Christians material every week on Studio 60, but it’s not the big takedown target that Madonna is. Now everybody — NBC, the religious protesters,and Madonna herself (who defended the crucifix routine in a lengthy statement a few weeks ago, then quietly cut it from the broadcast) — can pretend they’ve done something significant to protect the delicate sensibilities of American viewers. Congratulations, everyone! Sleep easy tonight.

Today in AOL searches

I don’t know why, but looking at AOL’s bizarre list of today’s top 11 searches (America, you confound me!), I have the urge to reinterpret a few bars of Madonna’s "Vogue." Thank you for your indulgence. And have a great weekend.

betty ugly, katie couric
mya sings with dionne warwick
anal cancer, tara reid
on the cover of a magazine

gene kelly, outerwear?
ginger rogers, dance on air
csi with kevin fed
do you think tupac’s really dead?

the whole darn list’s so full of whimsy
with not a whiff of lohan, lindsay
so don’t just sit there, let’s get to it
surf the net, there’s nothing to it

Bizarre Music News Roundup

155049__madonna_lToday in News About Rock Stars That Has Very Little To Do With Their Actual Music:

- Okay. So last week, Madonna (pictured, with hubby Guy Ritchie) was visiting orphanages in Malawi, and reportedly pulled a Jolie. Then Madonna’s publicist denied the adoption, saying Madge was just in Malawi to hang out. Then today, the father of the orphan (??) announced that Madonna was in fact adopting his son, and he’s way excited about the whole thing. So lemme get this straight: if you’re rich and famous enough, you can just go around picking which babies you want, and buying them wholesale? That seems wrong.

- David Bowie has provided a guest voice on SpongeBob SquarePants, at last legitimizing that underwatched, indie cartoon.

- The Who’s Roger Daltrey will make an appearance on CSI, at last legitimizing that underwatched, indie crime series. (It should be pointed out that this means rock legend Roger Daltrey is enjoying John Mayer’s sloppy seconds, and Kevin Federline’s possibly-herpes-drenched thirds.)

addCredit(“Madonna and Guy Ritchie: Andrea Renault/Globe Photos”)

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Snap Judgment: Madonna's 'Jump'

94850__mad_lI know, I know, PopWatch has already discussed the perplexing lack of airplay for Madonna’s post-”Hung Up” singles from her mighty fine Confessions on a Dancefloor set. And yet, almost a year after the album’s release, Madge is still looking for some chart love with a new video for the album’s fourth single, ”Jump.” (Click here to see it on YouTube.) I am sorry to report it’s a thuddingly literal clip; I mean, can you imagine if the ”Take a Bow” video featured shot after shot of hoodie-clad hipsters taking bows? Or if ”Frozen” had followed dozens of urban dwellers refilling their ice-cube trays? Forget about low concept, we’re talking no concept! For all the money spent capturing footage of impressive rooftop leaps, I wish Madonna had chosen instead to offer us a visually sumptuous slice of storytelling, something along the lines of ”Express Yourself” or ”Bedtime Story.”

That said, at least Madonna’s hung up the leotard and the Valerie Cherish ‘do for a striking blonde bob and a black leather number that reminds us all that her 48-year-old body still looks better than yours (and mine). And as far as ”Jump” goes, it’s got a killer beat, an actual melody (remember those?), and a nice little message about self-empowerment, complete with a tree metaphor. Which, of course, means there’s probably not a radio station in America that’ll play it. Sigh. Too bad girlfriend didn’t swallow her pride and call in a Sacha Baron Cohen cameo, eh?

What's Weirder? (Random, Mortifying News Edition)

Let’s play ”What’s Weirder?”

A. Roman Polanski is returning to acting. In Rush Hour 3.
B. Madonna asks herself ”What would Jesus do?” and determines that the answer is staging a self-crucifixion on a disco-ball cross.
C. Rosie O’Donnell says she scored a ”nice boobs” compliment from costar Julian McMahon  while filming a sex scene for Nip/Tuck.
D. La Toya Jackson gets photographed in a pink nightie atop a wooden horse, reportedly as part of an advertisement for Australian malt liquor.

(Click the jump to see Mike’s answer…)

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Double Vision: Madonna vs. Tyra

16647__tyramadonna_lTrend alert: It’s officially cool to look like you’re stretching your inner thigh muscles while posing as The One in Charge of group photo shoots. My roommate Kristian noticed the laughable similarity between Madonna’s lunge in this H&M ad and Tyra’s sprawl (she’s in worse shape, so needs to be seated) in this Top Model promo. Oh, come on, Tyra. We’ve seen it all before…

Who do you think strikes the better pose? There’s nothing to it: I say Madonna.

And speaking of Madge...

That crazy Madonna. If she’s not pissing off the Catholics, she’s… well, she’s pissing off the Russian Orthodox Church. Her current "Confessions" tour made waves in America (including the cover of the never-reactionary New York Post) for the cheery little number where she crucifies herself on some sort of disco cross while singing "Live to Tell," but she didn’t really get the blasphemy chants going until she hit Europe.

Now, NBC is reconsidering whether or not it’s a good idea to run the "Live to Tell" bit during its upcoming prime-time Madonna concert special. That’s their right as a network in this post-Janet world, I suppose, but still, it’s fair to ask: Did NBC forget that its Madonna concert special was a Madonna concert special? Did they think she would be frolicking with puppies under a sky full of pink fluffy clouds that spell out "Jesus Loves Me"?  And how will this kerfuffle affect ABC’s "GWAR: The Truth Behind the Bestiality" sweeps event?

Rupert Everett dishes on his famous friends

10473__rupert_lGossiping is not nice. At least that’s what my mother always taught me when I was a young boy. And so it is with her stern warning in the back of my mind that I urge you not to click the following link, which will take you to the Daily Mail’s excerpt of Rupert Everett’s new autobiography, Red Carpets and Other Banana Skins. Certainly, it will not make you a better person to hear Rupert describe Madonna’s Material Girl look as "puppy fat and boot-boy legs squeezed into a tutu." Nor will the tale of Donatella Versace’s 1999 New Year’s Eve bash — during which Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow "huddled together like bullies" and directed "snorts of derision" at Jennifer Lopez — help enlighten you on your journey of personal fulfillment. Similarly, it will only taint your soul to soak up Everett’s reports from the set of The Next Best Thing — with Madge downing cocktails to prep for her on-screen smooch with Benjamin Bratt, and director John Schlesinger falling asleep behind the monitor. So pick up some Kafka, or Shakespeare, or Dan Brown — whatever your poison. Just don’t read the Everett excerpt. Trust me, by this time tomorrow, you’ll be thanking me. And, of course, my mom.

addCredit(“Madonna & Everett: Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images”)

Why can't Madonna score a hit single on U.S. radio?

102135__madonna_lThis week’s Ask Billboard column tackles a subject that’s been on my mind for a while now: What the heck is going on with Madonna’s highly addictive single, ”Get Together”? (If you’ve been deprived of hearing the track, it’s streaming here, at her official website.) Chart guru Keith Caulfield explains that "Get Together" has pretty much stalled out on American radio. A handful of dance stations are spinning the track a lot, but most outlets have ignored the song." What’s more, while the single has failed to crack Billboard’s Hot 100, Caulfield notes that "unsurprisingly, ‘Get Together’ is doing well on the radio in many countries outside of America."

addCredit(“Madonna: Steven Klein”)

Still, the question Caulfield doesn’t answer is this: Why? I mean, considering Rihanna’s relentlessly nasal ”Unfaithful” and Paris Hilton’s tepid ”Stars Are Blind” have climbed to Nos. 6 and 18 respectively in recent weeks, it’s certainly not a matter of quality. "Get Together" is a far frothier summer treat, its pulsing dance beat serving as the foundation for Madonna’s siren call to a potential lover. And I don’t think it’s an age thing, either, since veteran acts like Bon Jovi, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Busta Rhymes are all currently in the top 50. Not even the super-lame videoclip that accompanies "Get Together" — oh, how I long for the heady days of "Like a Prayer" and "Express Yourself" — can be blamed for radio’s snub, leaving me at a loss for theories.

Could Madge have contracted a case of Bigineuropeitis — a disease that’s afflicted Robbie Williams, Anastacia, and Kylie Minogue — by virtue of her late-onset British accent? Is this all a case of widespread leotard-o-phobia? Or does anyone have a more plausible theory? I’m leaving it up to you, PopWatchers, while I dial my local stations and demand some love for "Get Together."

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