- The Stephanie Miller Show
Infobox Radio show
show_name = The Stephanie Miller Show
other_names = The Stephanie Miller Newscast
Political satire- Observational comedy- Wit- Word play
runtime = 3 hours
country = United States
language = English
home_station = KTLK 1150 AM,
Jones Radio Networks)
MSNBC April 30- May 2, 2007
announcer = Jim Ward
producer = Rebekah Baker
rec_location = KTLK studios, Burbank, CA & on location during events
first_aired = September 2004
last_aired = the present
We're Not Gonna Take Itby Twisted Sister
othertheme = Various throughout the show
endtheme = Various
website = [http://www.stephaniemiller.com/ Official show website]
podcast = The "Stephcast" by paid subscription
"The Stephanie Miller Show" is a syndicated
liberal talk radioprogram that discusses politics, current events, and pop culture using a fast-paced, impromptu style. The three-hour show is hosted by comedienne Stephanie Miller("Steph") along with voice artist Jim Ward and the show's engineer and executive producer Chris Lavoie("The Mooks"). The show debuted in September 2004 and is broadcast live each weekday morning on many radio stations throughout the U.S.The radio show should not be confused with Miller's short-lived 1995 syndicated TV talk showwith the same name.
Talkers Magazine" named Stephanie Miller as one of the 100 most important radio talk show hosts in America in 2007, describing her as a funny, smart, and charming rising star of the progressive talk format. [http://www.talkers.com/main/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=19&Itemid=44] "The Stephanie Miller Show" is heard on at least 40 affiliates around the country.
The show was simulcast on
MSNBCfor three days starting April 30, 2007, as part of a series of programs filling the former time slot of Don Imus. [http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/04-25-2007/0004573906&EDATE=]
The show is primarily a mix of comedy and political topics, though Miller notes that "we talk less about politics than any other show in the
progressive talkformat". Much of the show takes the form of Miller introducing a news item or soundbite, followed by discussion among Miller, Ward, and Lavoie. The discussions are punctuated with sound effects, short audio clips, and imitations by Ward. Miller calls her show a mix of "high-brow" and "low-brow", and sometimes " unibrow" (in reference to her appearance as a teenager). Because the show can include interviews with political figures among jokes appealing to a juvenile sense of humor, Miller has also described the show's format as "senator, fart joke, senator, fart joke."
Miller typically starts each hour of the show by reading a few e-mails from listeners. The e-mails can include anything from brief funny comments to elaborate humorous audio productions. Miller usually plays a mild applause sound effect after reading each e-mail.
The show takes several calls from listeners each hour at the phone number 1-800-STEPH-1-2. Miller says that "right-wing wackos go to the front of the line," and often refers to conservative male callers as "right-wing love muffins" while urging them to "come to the light". Callers converse mostly with Miller, rather than with Ward or Lavoie.
The show has been broadcast from several affiliate cities, with Miller and Ward appearing in front of a live audience (Lavoie stays at the studio). During these remote broadcasts, audience questions and interactions take the place of phone calls.
The show occasionally has guest hosts. Previously comedienne
Elayne Booslersupplied a majority of the hosting duties in Stephanie Miller's absence, frequently joined by comedy writer Merrill Markoe. Recently, Frangela(an announcing team of two ladies named Frances and Angela) has taken over the duties of official guest host, and frequents the show in a segment called "Fridays with Frangela." Frangela airs weekends on the show's flagship station, KTLK in Los Angeles.
Stephanie Miller: Miller self-deprecatingly describes herself as a washed-up stand-up comic who is unqualified for any work other than her radio show. She jokes about consuming box wine. Having never been married, she considers herself to be a spinster(or "an elderly shut-in") with many fictional relationships with "future husbands". Her response to certain men (particularly firemen) is described by Lavoie as "slutty".
Miller, being the daughter of
William E. Miller(running mate of Barry Goldwater), sometimes makes references to her Republican family, particularly her mother. Miller thinks that it's best that the show isn't broadcast in the city where her mother lives.
Jim Ward: Miller refers to Ward as "voice deity" (or sometimes "voice monkey") and "the official conspiracy theorist" of the show. Ward is said to believe everything even though he has pointed out some conspiracies that he does not believe in. Ward writes the comedy bits that he performs during "Stand Up News" and "Tinsel Talk", though Miller complains that he waits until the last moment.
Chris Lavoie: Miller refers to Lavoie as "boytoy" and "the official atheist" of the show. In contrast with Ward, Lavoie is said to believe in nothing. Also, Lavoie is considered "the official conservative" or "right-wing tool" of the show, much to the exasperation of Lavoie. Lavoie is known for his distinctive (some say annoying) laughing, particularly when Miller is the target of a joke. Both Lavoie and Ward enjoy pointing out Miller's errors.
Impersonations by Miller and Ward on the show make fun of both sides of the political aisle. Usually these impersonations exaggerate the voice of various pundits or political leaders.
Wolf Blitzer- These impersonations always depict Blitzer as extremely constipated based on a supposed diet of hard cheese and drywall, since the Johnson administration (Andrew Johnson), followed by an explosion sound effect, and are almost always used in conjunction with that of Rita Cosby. Miller and Ward, in addition to impersonating both Cosby and Blitzer, often state that they would like to see the two engage in sexual relations, usually accompanied by an impersonation of the hypothetical scenario.
Tom Brokaw- Ward's impersonations of the former NBCnewsanchor features an exaggerated elongation of "L" sounds in words, and, subsequently, all the stories that "Tom Brokaw" reports have a liberal use of the letter L, such stories about Slobodan Milošević, Jalalabad, and others. When Harry Shearercalls in, Miller gets Ward to compete with Shearer for the best Brokaw impersonation.
George W. Bush- These impersonations by Ward frequently exaggerate the long pauses and prolific use of "uh" or "er" throughout the impersonations (Hence "President Dial Tone"), which has Bush many times returning to the Republican rhetoric made by the President, such as "Freedom's on the march" or "Smoke 'em out" or "Shock and awe." Sometimes, during the impersonations, there would be a sound of a Bush riding a bicycle and ringing a bike bell; a reference to the fact that Bush rides a bike for exercise. Another running gag is his usage of the phrase "I like toast," which has not received an adequate explanation to date. When President George W. Bushdelivers a speech that is carried live on network television, the show will broadcast the speech with side comments by Miller and Ward and some sound effects in a style similar to Mystery Science Theater 3000. Ward's imitation of Bush is so accurate, that listeners have complained that they cannot distinguish which words are said by the president and which are said by Ward.
Dick Cheney- These impersonations are done by Ward talking into a coffee cup and imitating Darth Vader. In the background, the Imperial March theme from Star Warsplays. Usually, the impersonations end with so-called "Dick Vader" suggesting those that do not like what he says can " themselves with" a seemingly randomly-chosen object from Star Wars canon, no matter how unreasonable. Examples ranged from lightsabers to the planet Hothand various star clusters. The quote is in reference to Cheney's vulgar comment to Senator Patrick Leahyin 2004.
Bill Clinton- These impersonations by Ward focuses on the Monica Lewinskyscandal. Usually, they feature not-so-subtle sexual undertones, which usually ends with Hillary Clintonhitting Bill with a frying pan.
Hillary Clinton- These impersonations by Miller are reminiscent of the martians from the Mars Attacks!movie, featuring a nasally, high-pitched squawking sound. As such, there are no actual words used. The entire impersonation is made up of squawks. Recently, Hillary's frying pan (see Bill Clinton's entry above) has been used against other people besides Bill. Recently, however, Jim Ward has also started doing Hillary in debates against Senator Barack Obama. The character is voiced with the same Midwestern accent as Dennis Hastert and James Sensenbrenner, emphasizing flat "A's."
Alan Colmes- These impersonations by Ward lambastes liberal pundit from Fox News' Hannity and Colmes, by making him sound like Milton Waddams from " Office Space" due to his timidity.
Rita Cosby- These impersonations of the conservative pundit on MSNBCare performed by both Miller and Ward. Miller sometimes apologizes for these impersonations of Cosby, which exaggerate Cosby's husky voice, because Miller hopes that it's only temporary, and it "sounds like she was kicked in the neck by a horse", or alternatively, "hit in the throat by a dodge-ball". The impersonation is often used in conjunction with those of Wolf Blitzer. Since the death of Anna Nicole Smith, her voice has been accompanied by the loud chopping of a helicopter, referencing her penchant for reporting from them.
Tom Cruise- Ward talks very fast to background sounds of springs being released, in reference to an incident where Tom Cruise jumped on the couch of the " The Oprah Winfrey Show". Ward's impersonations of Cruise usually end with insane laughter accompanied by a Cuckoo clock. Scientologyand Cruise's supposed excessive control over Katie Holmesare a recurring theme. Whenever Cruise disagrees with a criticism of him, he accuses his detractors as being "suppressive and glib."
Bill Gates- Ward's impersonation of the technology mogul is a stereotypical computer geek. There are frequent references to Star Trek, Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, Dungeons and Dragons, and others. The impersonations are nasal and lisp-like, and usually giggly.
Rudy Giuliani- Jim usually uses a lispy high-pitched New York Accent. Rudy's character has become somewhat of hit during the beginning of the 2008 campaign when Rudy was still running, mainly to him summoning his Wife Judy, when campaign hecklers were getting to him. He also mocks Giuliani's frequent mentions of September 11. After Giuliani dropped out of the 2008 Presidential race, Judith--appalled by Rudy's failure--ate her husband, finding him equally "crunchy and salty" as puppies and babies. He has, however, appeared a few times since then.
Judith Giuliani- Rudy's wife, done by Jim, is in vein of a Demonic monster from the depths of Hades who munches on puppies, and salty baby skulls. She only likes to be called Judith.
Newt Gingrich- Ward plays Newt with a decidedly "Kermit the Frog" cadence and flair. Stephanie has speculated that Newt is "paid by the 'frankly'."
Alberto Gonzales- These impersonations by Ward of the "torture czar" are reminiscent of Mr. Rogers making blatant threats against the safety of those who listen to him. In the background, horror-themed sound effects play, like backwards music, screaming, chains clanking, and etc. Lavoie and Miller have stated that they are scared by this character. During the time Gonzales was under fire in Congress, the threats were sometimes followed by clips of laughter from an audience, with Gonzales dismayedly asking why people are laughing instead of being frightened of him.
Sean Hannity- In reference to his claim that Ray Naginleft hundreds of buses behind during Hurricane Katrina, Ward impersonates Hannity making a heartfelt plea involving: "The buses... why?" This is always accompanied by the flute ballad from " Terms of Endearment" that has become Hannity's leitmotifon the show. At times, Ward resorts to a "talking point frittata", where he randomly spouts Hannity's often-used talking points.
David Hasselhoff- Is often having imaginary conversations with KITTduring the Tinsel Talk segment where Hasselhoff will be discussing his misfortunes with KITT, usually ending up with KITT getting really annoyed and driving off, during these skits the " Knight Rider" theme song is played in the background with one noted exception when Hasselhoff and KITT do a Duet of Elton Johnand Kiki Dee's "Don't Go Breaking My Heart."
Dennis Hastert/ James Sensenbrenner- These appear to be the exact same character. Ward impersonates these two Congressmen with a heavy Midwestern accent, rife with references to meats followed by a Lipitor chaser when their blood gets "chunky". Their catchphrase is "Oh God" pronounced "Oh Gadd!". The two characters have only been heard together once, and remain difficult to distinguish from each other. Stephanie's nickname for Senator Hastert is "Beefy McBratwurst."
Arianna Huffington- These impersonations of the progressive columnist and owner of The Huffington Post blogby Miller exaggerates her accent so what she says is unintelligible. These impersonations are reminisient of Eva Gaborand lately, the Green Acrestheme plays in the background during the impersonation. These are sometimes done during a round tablediscussion between Huffington, Ozzy Osbourne, Keith Richardsand Arnold Schwarzenegger, all of which are done in exaggerated accents which are nearly unintelligible.
Kim Jong-Il- Ward impersonates the North Korean dictator with a stereotypically Korean accent, and depicts him as a parody of "Ghetto" street culture, using the appropriate slang ("K-to-the-J-to-the-I-L in the Hizzie!" or, alternatively, "Hizzouse"), and a stereotypical Engrishspeech pattern (transposing L's and R's). This impersonation is a point of exasperation for Lavoie, with him saying, "Oh no" when Miller urges Ward to "do Kim Jong-Il". Ward's Kim Jong-Il is inordinately fond of the AMC Pacerautomobile (he's had his own Pacer "tricked out") and Zagnutcandy bars. He also expresses disgust with his son, whom he describes as being comically fat and gluttonous.
Joe Lieberman- These impersonations of the Independent Senator from Connecticut are reminiscient of Willie Tanner of the 1980's sitcom ALF. Recently, Lieberman has also appeared in sketches featuring Presidential candidate Senator John McCain, usually correcting him when he makes an incorrect statement.
Rush Limbaugh- These impersonations are usually done by Miller. The impersonation features a lot of loud breathing into the microphone, shaking of a pill canister, and shuffling of paper. Also, there is the use of "my friends" after almost every sentence.
Chris Matthews- These impersonations are usually short, with Ward responding "Fair enough, hah!" in Matthews' voice due to his inability to challenge blatant lies told by guests. Lately, though, Ward's Matthews has been questioning those lies with an exasperated, "Ha!" Fair enough!"
Ozzy Osbourne- These impersonations are usually unintelligible, featuring Ozzy's mumbling breathy voice.
*Bill O'Reilly - Ward's Bill O'Reilly impersonation tends to sway towards Bill's misadventures in telephone sex with subordinate employees. O'Reilly's endless source of hypocrisy is gleaned from "tape recording devices" which is then hilariously lampooned.
Randi Rhodes- These impersonations by Miller of the Nova M Radiohost lampoon the host's measured "time checks" after a heated, breathless rant. Stephanie and Randi are very close friends and she expressed her open support for her "time-check sister" following her recent suspension and subsequent departure from Air America--one of the few progressive talk show hosts who did.
Keith Richards- These impersonations, like Ozzy's and Arianna's, started out as unintelligible mumblings. However, as the show progressed, it was revealed that Richards' mumblings are an act, and that he actually speaks with a refined British accent, which he hides when his bandmates or others who don't know his true nature come around.
Geraldo Rivera- These impersonations usually crop up during the "Right Wing World" section of the show wherein Bill O'Reilly and Geraldo discuss blatantly out-of-context and, therefore, homosexual themes. Usually, it starts with a clip of Bill and Geraldo talking about something, then Ward continues the subject into blatantly homosexual territory, with a stereotypical homosexual lisp, with a Village Peopleaccompaniment of "In the Navy." During these impersonations, Ward sometimes delves into masochism with Rivera complaining that O'Reilly won't stop (accompanied by the sound of a whip cracking) even after Rivera shouts out the safeword(a word used to get the dominant to stop their actions), "Mizrahi!"
Pat Robertson(aka Evil Uncle Chuckles) - When Jim Ward imitates Pat Robertson, he exaggerates Robertsons' chuckling, with frequent threats to various groups like liberals, feminists, homosexuals, and so on, of being "tossed into the lake of fire" and/or being subjected to various diseases, and as he does it, he gets more and more giggly. The imitation is accompanied by organ music. It also often begins with a metaphor (e.g., the Lord's barbecue), which is then extended into inanity ("...and the potato salad of the Lord's judgement...")
Donald Rumsfeld- These impersonations exaggerate Rumsfeld's penchant for answering his own rhetorical questions, and usage of outdated slang such as "heavens to Betsy" or "my stars." Lately, these impersonations highlight that his voice is "getting higher and higher" whenever Rumsfeld fervently defends a position.
*Typical O'Reilly Factor Fan - These impersonations usually have a deep, stereotypically Southern accent. The caller also often says the phrase "Get'er Done," popularized by
Larry the Cable Guy. Usually, they reference "biscuits and mustard," and end with a back-and-forth between the Fan and O'Reilly, respectively, "A'right then." "All right." "A'right then." "All right." "A'right then." This impersonation is based on Billy Bob Thornton's Karl Childerscharacter in the movie Sling Blade.
*Fox News Hate Mail Writer - A variation of the Typical O'Reilly Factor Fan, except that they have problems writing extended hate e-mails to Stephanie because they have not mastered the fine art of putting everything in the body of the e-mail, choosing instead to try and cram everything into the "Subject" line. Frustrated, they always end up calling on their wife Lurleen (voiced by Stephanie) to help them work the "TV with the typewriter on it." Lurleen is almost always too busy, as she spends most of her time in the couple's methamphetamine lab.
Arnold Schwarzenegger- The most lucid and understandable of the "unintelligible" impersonations. These impersonations of the Californiagovernor/movie star feature an exaggerated Austrian accent and Ward ending Schwarzenegger's sentences or phrases with "...and these kinds of things" or "...and things of this nature," and "Get to the chopper!"--a line from the movie Predator. Miller sometimes asks "Exactly, what kinds of things?". Another variation of the sketch finds Arnold engaged in a screaming match with Democratic National Committee leader Howard Dean.
John McCain- Ward plays McCain as a hot-tempered individual, who regularly peppers his speech with fould language (bleeped for broadcast) and US Navy terms.
Queen Elizabeth II- When actions by the British royal family raise to the level of requiring commentary by the show's hosts, Miller will mention such actions in the Stand-up News segment of the show, typically followed by reaction from Ward in the voice of the current reigning British monarch. "...Needless to say...We are not amused!" Many of the sketches find the Queen recounting distinctly wanton acts of sexual debauchery that have indeed left the Royal Family "very amused."
*Squeezy McFeelpants--Former State Representative Al Edwards from Texas, who once banned a high school cheerleading routine deemed by him to be too suggestive. Over a bed of music that could be described at best as not entirely out of place in a porno, he enters, salaciously murmuring "Oh, my...Oh, my, my, my, my...Well, how-de-do?" before launching into an increasingly smutty discourse which invariably ends with Edwards being physically hauled away, not understanding what he said wrong.
* Kyle - Actually, this is an original character of Jim Ward's, meant to be a composite of callers to the show that say that if their favorite candidate (specifically Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama) does not get the nomination for President, that they are going to either not vote at all or vote for John McCain in protest. Such callers are admonished not to "go all Kyle on them," or to think rationally because of the grave nature of what they're saying. Kyle's voice is a cross between a spoiled child threatening to hold their breath until they get their way and Ward's Rudy Giuliani imitation.
Paris Hilton- Ward’s imitation of Paris Hilton on her computer, perhaps sending out e-mails is done in a breathy voice, suggesting that she is a vapid airhead. It is suffused with her ubiquitous reference to herself being “hot” or “totally hot.” There is also the sound of a keyboard in the background.
*Other impersonations mastered by Ward include:
Al Gore, William F. Buckley, Jack Nicholson, Mick Jagger, Paul McCartney, Simon Cowell, and Lionel Barrymore.
elf deprecating humor
Miller pokes fun at herself quite a bit.
* When criticized by a listener that the show is "sophomoric", Miller actually took the comment as a compliment.
*Although she has no children, Stephanie Miller often refers to herself as "Mama", as do her listeners. She also has a soundbite "she's a slut" which Miller allows Producer Chris Lavoie to apply to her when talking about her future husbands. One time, when Chris called her a
whore, she replied with a "thank you."
*She read on her show, as well as posted on her web site, a humorous, but true, biography written by a fan. While reading the biography on her show, she said that the only inaccuracy in the letter is that the "minor plastic surgery" should be replaced with "major plastic surgery".
*Claims that she started her career as a dancer at the "Itchy Kitty" in
Reseda, California, and if it wasn't for her radio show, that would be the only thing she would be qualified to do. The Itchy Kitty story is probably false, based on the biography mentioned above. Although there really IS a strip club in Reseda, Californiacalled The Frisky Kitty.
*She publicized a very stinging hate e-mail she received.
*Uses a soundclip describing the show as "Ex-
CatholicGirl Gone Wild". This is a parodyon the Girls Gone Wildvideos.
*Uses a soundclip "She puts the broad back in broadcasting."
*Uses a soundclip "She's the life of the Democratic Party. Ignore the lampshade."
*Miller sometimes makes fun of her childhood appearance, including her
unibrow, afro, fangs, hammer toe, and gray teeth. Usually, Ward and Lavoie join in on bashing Miller's childhood appearance.
**Claims that she was "abandoned by wolves, and raised by Republicans". The "abandoned by wolves" phrase is her way of explaining the fangs.
*Jokes that because the owner of the show has taken out a
life insurancepolicy on her life, that he wants her dead.
*Claims to have the supernatural ability to make men gay, because men that she dated in the past have come out of the closet. It has been suggested by Ward, Lavoie, and callers that she use her "gay-ray" to sabotage campaigns and tenures of various politicians.
*Calls herself a "modern-day Jezebel" and a "Happy
Harlot", after a call from "Reverend Dan" who accused her of being one.
*On August 6 and 7th, 2007, Miller stated she has
paruresis, or shy pee snydrome.
"Right Wing World"
"Right Wing World" usually takes up much of the first hour of the show. The feature opens with Ward announcing in the style of a carnival barker, "Step right up, get your Republican talking points, get your peanut-size brains, your brain must be this (various) to go on this ride", with (various) being a topical
ad libby Ward. Also, as Ward reads the usual announcement, the pitch of his voice rises to a high pitch. Many recent soundbitesfrom conservative media personalities are played, each followed by commentary. Frequent targets include Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, and Michael Savage. Miller says that she watches Fox News "so you don't have to". When asked to describe "Right Wing World", Miller replied:
"Right Wing World" is obviously clips from Fox and others. It’s amazing. You get what the Republican talking points are for the day because they are endlessly repeated in a million different forms. O’Reilly says it. Hannity says it. Savage says it. We do "Right Wing World" mostly for comedy. It’s really just a forum to mock them mercilessly. But it’s also instructive to people: This is the propaganda you’re getting. And this is why what they’re saying is not true. [http://www.progressive.org/mag_intv0906]
"Stand Up News"
This second-hour segment starts with Miller describing it as "some news we don't want to lose", followed by a pre-recorded intro by Ward, and then Miller stating that "when news breaks here, it stays broken". Miller reads brief summaries of news stories, with each providing the set-up for a short comedy bit, almost always involving impersonations by Ward. Miller ends the segment with the clichéd
stand-up comedianclosing "I'm here all week, tell your friends".
This third-hour segment starts with a pre-recorded intro featuring Ward backed by a disco version of
Ethel Merman's "There's No Business Like Show Business". The format is similar to "Stand Up News", except the focus is entertainment news. Some of these items come from tabloid sources Miller jokingly calls "The Paper" (i.e., " The National Enquirer" or "The Star").
Although the show is humorous in nature, it uses its humor to educate its listeners about current events and politics. It is taken seriously enough, however, to occasionally include Washington and political insiders as phone guests, via the "Celebrity Hotline". The segment starts with a ringing phone sound effect and Miller feigning surprise at the pre-arranged call. Guests have included
Howard Dean(whom Miller respectfully referred to "by all three of his titles: Doctor Governor Chairman Howard Dean"), John Kerry, Harry Reid, Barbara Boxer(nicknamed "the Matron Saint of The Stephanie Miller Show"), Byron Dorgan, Debbie Stabenow, Jon Tester, Linda Sanchez, Keith Ellison, Frank Rich, Jack Cafferty, Paul Begala, Jason Alexander, Harry Shearer, Tim Robbins, Gen. Wesley Clark, and John Conyers(nicknamed "the Patron Saint of The Stephanie Miller Show"). Representative Conyers coined the term "The Stephanie Miller Newscast", which continues to be a source of amusement for the hosts. Miller has said that she is somewhat surprised that an elected official would agree to call the show, but even more surprised when they agree to a second call-in.
One notable celebrity call-in was
Melissa Etheridge, who spontaneously called the show 10 minutes after Congresswoman Maxine Waterswas featured on the "Celebrity Hotline". Lavoie noted that Miller was far more impressed with Etheridge calling the show than with a congresswoman calling the show. Since Etheridge's call was not pre-arranged, it was not referred to as a "Celebrity Hotline" call.
This occasional segment involves Ward giving a detailed description of a
conspiracy theory, backed by the theme from "". Many of the theories presented by Ward originate with Wayne Madsen. Generally, Ward defends the credibility of the theories he presents, while Lavoie expresses skepticism; Miller has said that she wants to be skeptical, but that Ward frequently turns out to be correct.
"Guess the Quote"
This is another occasional segment. When it appears, it is usually an opening part of "Right Wing World" or used to fill time at the end of the show. Stephanie reads a variety of quotes which usually have a common theme to them (same subject, all from the same person, etc.) to the theme music from "
Jeopardy!" Jim Ward then attempts to guess the source of each quote, but to date Jim has never guessed any of the quotes correctly. His pointedly incorrect answers often follow a common theme of their own, distinctly different from the theme of the quotes.
The show incorporates a variety of recurring comedic elements, including:
*Impressions: Mostly performed by Ward, these vary from slight exaggerations (Bill O'Reilly) to more abstract characterizations (
Alberto Gonzalesas a creepy Mr. Rogers and Dick Cheneyas Darth Vader).
*Nicknames: These include "phone sex enthusiast" Bill O'Reilly, "human
muppet" Newt Gingrich, "noted transsexual plagiarist" Ann Coulter(more recently referred to as " succubusincubus" or "junk-toting stick-figure" Ann Coulter), "human Shar Pei" Brit Hume, and "drug-addled gasbag" Rush Limbaugh. A frequent nickname style is (adjective) Mc(noun), something that began with former White House Press Secretary Scott McClellanbeing dubbed "Puffy McMoonface"; other examples include "Beefy McBratwurst" for Dennis Hastert, "Mitch McChinless" For Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, "Presidential Spokesliar Crony McSnowjob" for now-former White House Press Secretary Tony Snow, "Tubby McTreason" for now-former White House Advisor Karl Rove, "Drunky McPukeshoes" for now-former House Speaker Tom DeLay, "Tappy McWidestance" for Senator Larry Craigof Idaho, "Droopy McTrophywife" for Senator Fred Thompson, and "Chimpy McCokespoon" for President George W. Bush. White House Press Secretary Dana Perinois often referred to as "The Lying Sack of Cute" or "Tiny Dancer of Deception."
*The Squeezies: One outgrowth of the McNicknames has become a group of three "legislators" known collectively as the "Squeezies." All three characters, Squeezy McFeelpants, his British counterpart Mashy McGrabAss and their Australian contemporary Fingers Billabong, are voiced by Ward and all follow a similar vein. The characters all make suggestive and borderline lewd comments regarding women in the news. All three characters are eventually hustled out shouting that they are trying to protect the best interests of the women they were referring to. The original character, "Squeezy McFeelpants," was based on then-Texas state legislator
Al Edwards, who had introduced a bill that would outlaw overly-suggestive dance routines by high school cheerleader squads. Occasionally "Squeezies" from other countries make an appearance when something relevant goes on in other places: examples include a Señor Tocapantalones from Mexico and someone named "Grabiu" from Japan.
*Vocabulary: Miller uses coined words and phrases such as "celebutard", for a celebrity behaving stupidly, and "Foxpert", for a person of dubious credentials presented as an expert on the
Fox News Channel.
*Future husbands: Miller has a list of imaginary "future husbands", usually men who have boldly espoused liberal viewpoints. The original was newscaster
Keith Olbermann, and Senator Russ Feingoldis regularly alluded to. Many others have been mentioned from time to time, including "crusty old CNN coot" (see "Nicknames" entry above) Jack Cafferty.
*Self-deprecating humor: Miller frequently pokes fun at herself, including her childhood appearance, her career, and her juvenile sense of humor.
*"Official": Callers sometimes call or e-mail the show to ask if they can become an "official" on the show, such as the "official angry college student of the Stephanie Miller Show." Many of these titles are long and include references to their political beliefs. Miller would then grant the title followed by sound effects such as a magic wand and clapping.
*The middle name "Louise." Used by Chris Lavoie whenever he is extremely frustrated with Stephanie. However, doing a recent sketch featuring Sean Connery making multiple sexual innuendoes while talking about golf, Chris called Jim "JIM LOUISE WARD!" Neither Stephanie nor Jim's middle name is Louise.
*John McCain's age and ill temper. Miller frequently calls him "Grampy." Usually emphasized with several drops from "Futurama" and "The Simpsons," particularly those with Abraham Simpson. McCain also occasionally barks a stereotypical "Hey! You kids get off my lawn!"
ound effects and Drops
Sound effects and short sound clips, or "drops," from movies and other sources are often inserted during discussions to emphasize points. Many are used on a daily or near-daily basis; the sources for some of these are listed below.
*"Computer says no" and "Computer says yes" - voiced by
David Walliamsas Carol Beerin the BBCcomedy series " Little Britain".
* "Oh, won't somebody "please" think of the children!" - voiced by
Maggie Roswellas Helen Lovejoyin episode 7F09 of " The Simpsons", " Itchy & Scratchy & Marge."
*"Whatever!" - voiced by
Elisa Donovanas Amber in the 1995 film "Clueless".
*"Huh?" voiced by
Don Messickas Scooby-Doo.
Sam Kinison's trademark three-scream outburst.
*"I am "not" one of your fans!" - voiced by
Diana Scarwidas Christina Crawfordin the 1981 film "Mommie Dearest".
*"Oh, I just think I'm gonna barf!" - voiced by
Frances McDormandas Marge Gundersonin the 1996 film "Fargo".
*"I just threw up in my mouth a little bit." - voiced by
Christine Tayloras Kate Veatch in the 2004 film "Dodgeball".
*"Hey Jiggles! Grab a pad and back that gorgeous butt in here..." - voiced by
Hank Azariaand Maggie Roswellas Malibu Stacyemployees in episode 1F12 of " The Simpsons", " Lisa vs. Malibu Stacy."
*"I "am" big, it's the "pictures" that got small" and "Alright, Mr. DeMille, I'm ready for my close-up" - voiced by
Gloria Swansonas Norma Desmondin the 1950 film "Sunset Blvd".
*"Well, then I just "hate" you and I hate your "ass face"!" and "I'll tell you why I can't put up with you people, because you're "bastard" people" - voiced by
Christopher Guestas Corky St. Clair in the 1997 film " Waiting for Guffman".
*"En garde, bitch!" - voiced by
Goldie Hawnas Helen Sharp in the 1992 film " Death Becomes Her".
*"He was my ... "boyfriend!" - voiced by
Cloris Leachmanas Frau Blücher in the 1974 film " Young Frankenstein".
*"No, don't speak... Silence, silence! Don't speak!" - voiced by
Dianne Wiestas Helen Sinclair in the 1994 film " Bullets Over Broadway".
*"Good Lord! The rod up that man's butt must have a rod up its butt!" - voiced by
Hank Azariaas Superintendent Chalmersin episode 4F23 of " The Simpsons", " The Principal and the Pauper."
*"Slut! She's a slut! Look at her! Slut!" - voiced by
Billy Crystalas Larry Donner in the 1987 film " Throw Momma from the Train".
*"Oh ... my ... God!" - from the 1992 hip-hop song "
Baby Got Back" by Sir Mix-a-Lot. Followed in the original track by "Becky, look at her butt, it is so big," it was reportedly voiced by Mix-a-Lot's wife.
In October 2006, an Ohio man who called himself "Sock" sent Stephanie Miller a letter that was interpreted as a death threat. The letter was in response to the views that Miller expressed during an
October 13, 2006appearance on the Fox Newsprogram " Hannity and Colmes" in which she defended peace activist Cindy Sheehan. [http://www.newshounds.us/2006/10/14/three_cheers_for_stephanie_miller.php] Since "Sock" included his phone number, Miller called and confronted him live on her October 30, 2006show. [The BradBlog website has more details about the incident, including the uncensored letter and audio of the on-air phone call. [http://www.bradblog.com/?p=3693] ] On the October 5, 2007show Stephanie Miller stated that the letter had been turned over to law enforcement shortly after she had received the letter.
Ward humorously noted that, while claiming to be a patriotic American, "Sock" suggested the use of an
AK-47, which is a Russian rifle. Miller also expressed confusion over the letter's reference to her "glory hole".
In response to the incident, a listener created a jingle to introduce "Sock" which Miller now plays to highlight the hypocrisy inherent in the letter or similar types of attacks. The incident also resulted in a brief mention during the cable news show "
Countdown with Keith Olbermann", which delighted Miller.
On February 23, 2007, a listener nicknamed "Arvy", who identified himself as a Democrat, wrote a letter to Miller stating that "she is worse than George Bush and should be shot...if I only had a gun".
Production and distribution
The show was launched on
September 7, 2004by WYD Media Management in association with Democracy Radio. [http://www.wydmedia.com/smiller.html] In November 2005, WYD Media Management acquired Democracy Radio's portion of ownership in the show. [cite web| date=November 28, 2005| title=Rating Miller| url=http://www.wydmedia.com/labj.html| publisher=WYD Media Management| accessdate=2006-06-13] The live program is produced in Los Angelesfrom 6 AM to 9 AM Pacific Time weekdays and syndicated nationally by Dial Global, which acquired former syndicator Jones Radio Networks.
The show is not associated with
Air America Radio, although the show is carried on many stations that are promoted as Air America affiliates. XM Radio began broadcasting The Stephanie Miller Show on channel 167 America Leftin July 2008.
* Netsky, Ron. " [http://www.rochestercitynewspaper.com/news/profiles/Stephanie+Miller/ Stephanie Miller: From Sister Sleaze to progressive radio queen] ", "Rochester City Newspaper", January 17, 2007.
* Rothschild, Matthew. " [http://www.progressive.org/mag_intv0906 Stephanie Miller] ", "The Progressive", September 2006.
* [http://www.stephaniemiller.com/ Official show website]
* [http://www.wydmedia.com/ WYD Media Management] (Show owner)
*"The Stephanie Miller Show" at [http://www.jonesradio.com/NewsTalk/StephanieMiller/index.html Jones Radio] (Show distributor)
* [http://www.smfhc.com/ Stephanie Miller's Future Husbands Club]
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