On Thursday, Jimmy Fallon took a good-natured swipe at British comedian Russell Brand, who recently joined the ranks of late-night TV with his FX show, “Brand X.” The extremely low-concept show has not exactly been a hit with the critics, and Fallon’s “Late Night” spoof illustrated its shortcomings at least as well as the negative reviews.
Affecting Brand’s high-pitched, East London accent and expansive body language, Fallon thumbed through the current issue of US Weekly and cracked wise about the latest celebrity gossip. The concept wasn’t all that different from the extremely on-the-fly “Brand X,” in which Brand stands on a stage riffing about the news and whatever pops into his head at a given moment.
Maybe it was the costume, but nice-guy Fallon went for the jugular in a way he usually doesn’t. The TomKat split was, not surprisingly, a primary target for ridicule (pre-divorce Katie looked like “Kristin Stewart, but even more depressed”) as was John Travolta (“What is he smiling about? Did he just come from a massage?”).
However, the ultimate butt of the joke wasn’t Brand but the magazine itself. Spying an ad for a special issue of issue of US Weekly dedicated to the “100 Cutest Guys,” Fallon-as-Brand wondered, “Who put this together? Jerry Sandusky?”