The Campaign Spot

Brian Williams, a ‘Versatile Performer… Who Can Disappear Into a Character’

Back in 2011, New York magazine wrote about Brian Williams’ appearances on programs like Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, 30 Rock, The Daily Show, and other talk shows, doing goofy things and telling funny stories. 

It’s all worked almost too well. These days, when people come up to Williams in public, more often than not it’s to praise his extracurricular work. “No one ever stops me at La Guardia to say ‘That oil-price-per-barrel graphic you guys use? Killer,’ ” he says. At the same time, given the role his lighter side has played in keeping his cultural footprint from shrinking, one could argue that Williams has yet to really receive his due as a comedian. He gets credit for showing up, but not enough for what he does once he gets there. A close study of Williams’s ever-growing body of work reveals a versatile performer who can disappear into a character, play the straight man, deliver a monologue, or trade barbs from the other side of the desk. He’s a confident, kempt success in a profession dominated by neurotics and Apatovian man-children. I

Hmm… perhaps disappearing into the character of a war correspondent with at least one dramatic, gripping story to tell?

Meanwhile, the pilot who said that William’s helicopter did come under small arms fire… now isn’t so sure:

The pilot I interviewed on Thursday about Brian Williams is no longer standing by his story.

That pilot, Rich Krell, told me he was flying the helicopter Williams was on in Iraq — an account now contradicted by several other soldiers.

On Friday morning, Krell told me that “the information I gave you was true based on my memories, but at this point I am questioning my memories.”

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