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Steve Brodner on ‘Sarah Palin’s Alaska’

Sarah Palin’s new reality show drew the biggest audience the cable channel TLC has ever had for a show premiere. Five million Americans tuned in — including Need to Know’s Jon Meacham, and Steve Brodner, who brings us this editorial cartoon about the show:

“In the new ‘reality’ show, ‘Sarah Palin’s Alaska,’ what do we see? We see Palin and the family climbing rocks, kayaking, dog-sledding. So is that all?  I think there’s more.

Candidates have used their personal lives to brand themselves forever. Sarah Palin is the first politician to go the next step and move completely into a kind of show business. Her brilliant revelation? That politics can now be completely divorced from policy. Out here, who wants to talk of problems and solutions? Almost sacrilegious.

Even worse: uncool.

You can look for allegory in this show. The footage of the ‘Mama Grizzly,’ a living illustration of Palin’s self-metaphor. Or the fence Todd built between their home and the writer Joe McGinnis, who was doing a book on Palin and rented house next door; Palin says that fence could even symbolize an immigration solution.

Okay, but you wouldn’t be getting the big message. That message is the genius of no message. Just a vast natural space. Us in the Paradise of America, no evident issues, discussion, policy, government. And we all look so good and young and funny. Look at all this together, don’t parse it, just together. Don’t you like this?

C’mon, wouldn’t you really want this … if you could choose your own ‘reality’?”


  • Fellow Palin hater

    Thank you, Mr. Brodner, for continuing the anti-Palin tradition begun by Andy Borowitz on the first episode.

    PBS fills a need for a show that mocks Palin and her family every week. She and the Republicans are stupid and inferior to us.

  • PJPO’K,Sr

    I concur. — Keep up these too clever by half ridicule to the delight and entertainment of that burgeoning, bi-coastal elite Newsweek audience.

  • Jim Brown

    Bravo! You’ve managed to be as vapid as Sarah!

  • dumpling


  • Steve Brodner

    Thanks for the support guys, but I hate to disappoint. I’m not hating her. I kind of think she’s cute. And so is her family. All I kept thinking when I saw the clips was how nice it would be to actually be there in the woods, on the lakes of Alaska. And especially with her, around the fire. But if, for a minute, we are to connect all this with a quest for the presidency, and if that confluence could lead to popular confusion of celebrity and political qualification . . . then raising it in a commentary is mo’ def’ the thing we need to know. And if you think that silence is preferable to recognizing something so revolutionary in American political life, especially if it changes the game and allows us to elect a person of this background and ability, you are really wrong.
    BTW: if there’s something i said that you disagree with I love to hear arguments. If you have one of those, and can stick to the point, we could then perhaps have an actual conversation. about an actual topic.

  • Vorlondel

    it’s appalling how Palin is using the alaskan beauty to get elected. he makes a really good point palin is a celebrity not a politician or a stateswomen, she’s not even a governor or at least not one who can be bothered to finish the job. she skipped out on mayor of wasilla to be Alaska governor and then ditched her people to chase the vice presidency. i wish she’d stay behind her little fence and quit embarrassing us alaskans.

  • Guest 5

    If this is what she really loves and likes how is the White House so attractive to her and family. The Joke is she would drill baby drill, never mind the environment and build gas and oil pipelines thru the whole state and others.
    Add to that and her intellectual ability and international Knowledge would make America a laughing stock.
    But Go baby go, only problem is Obama gets a second term thank god..
    Guest 5

  • Allee

    Hmmm– Stevie Brodner – he’s known for…….?