In the history of dramatic “Morning Joe” bullshit, nothing was funnier than the day Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski arrived to the set for a half hour of reaction to President Trump‘s tweet about Mika’s bloody chin.
One of the show’s regulars, Donny Deutsch, showed up in dark sunglasses. He’d had some work done, but was all cagey about it. He reminded me of Richard Gere in Unfaithful. You know, the scene where he shows up to his wife’s lover’s outrageously cool Soho loft. At first he’s fairly nice under the awkward circumstances. The men drink vodka. But suddenly Gere totally loses his fucking mind and cracks a snow globe over the better looking guy’s head, killing him instantaneously.
This was Donny.
He ripped Trump to shreds, but in the process revealed his own brand of crazy. He looked like Gere before the murder. He looked like he was going to cry, throw up, pop a blood vessel or stroke out on the set of “Morning Joe.” All because of a couple of idiotic tweets from the President.
“First of all, he picked the wrong schoolyard to come into, I have to tell you this,” Donny said in the pre-game show hosted by Mika and Joe’s TV son Willie Geist. “I’m not an employee of NBC so I have to go thug here. She’s a great mom. And he’s a vulgar pig. …He’s physically disgusting to look at. That’s what I find ironic. …Beyond the fact that he’s obviously not well — obvious misgynism, the obvious vulgarity, the obvious stupidity– he’s disgusting to look at. Enough is enough with this disgusting vulgar man. To talk about women that way? You physically look like you do? …You’re a pig. You are a bully and you are doing disgusting things to this country. …Maybe it’s time that we all stop tippy-toeing.”
He added, “I’m sorry, I probably won’t be on the show again.”
While he showed the audience he was something of a lunatic, he showed Joe and Mika he had their backs. This, despite years of being treated like the “Morning Joe” family’s crazy uncle who occasionally makes you wince and is always just a tad inappropriate.
This week Joe threw him a bone and went on Donny’s SiriusXM “Dialing Donny” radio show.
Joe spilled about his relationship with Mika, who is now openly his fiancé. In Olivia Nuzzi‘s recent New York Mag cover story, Mika heavily suggests that the couple hooked up before they divorced their respective spouses.
Meanwhile, Joe told Donny about their nasty fights.
Which I imagine might cause a new spat.
For Donny’s purposes, though, this was ratings gold. Which he more than earned for his “Trump is an ugly pig” speech.
“You know I’ve had a front row seat to you guys for a lot of years and over the years people would always say to me, what’s with them?” Donny told Joe on his show. “And I would always say to them they have a great chemistry. I wasn’t talking about that kind of chemistry, and then when I kinda found out I was surprised, not shocked.”
Oh please, Donny. Just cut it out. Of course you weren’t shocked.
Joe replied, “But you know, it was also kinda very intense though. We also fought a lot.”
Donny shot back, “And you still fight a lot. When you walk around, you’re called Mommy and Daddy. When you come in, I can tell when you guys are in a fight and sometimes it’s actually uncomfortable because you feel like you’re in somebody’s bedroom.”
That Donny wants to be Joe and Mika’s love child is disturbing.
“Most of the time it is uncomfortable,” Joe went on. “But you know, that’s another thing I found out in relationships that did not work me for. I don’t know about you, but for me, the mistake always was I am very driven at work. But I go home and I don’t wanna fight. I’m passive aggressive. I’m like ‘whatever you wanna do, whatever you wanna do, whatever you wanna do’ and that’s really what I think hurt me in one relationship after another.”
“Differences grow over a decade and things ultimately blow up. With Mika and me, we both learned. You have to. If there’s a problem, you put it on the table immediately. If it gets ugly it gets ugly. You go there and you fight through it.”
“I will tell you the blessing for us is we always we knew we had to take care of things by 6 a.m. the next morning. So we couldn’t go to sleep mad at each other. Because Mika has the worst poker face in the history of television. She wears everything on her sleeve. I know if she goes on the air angry with me that everybody’s gonna to know it.”
Like Jack Nicholson in As Good As It Gets, Joe says Mika makes him want to be a better man.
Please tell me there’s an escape hatch from Joe and Mika.
Joe is now oversharing.
“What works?” Donny asked, explaining that he hasn’t gotten there yet with his love life.
“Well first of all, you’ve gotta be all in,” Joe said. “It’s not something you can do casually. When you find the right person, you know it. It’s just what you said. She makes me better. I try to make her better.”
Joe said he’d go to war for Mika.
“And what we found out professionally first was, and it was instinctive,” he told Donny. “You always hear about co-anchors sorta fighting each other and kinda trying to get a leg up on the other. With us, I found out that she would, and a lot of the times I would hear it from third parties, that she would be going to war for me. I would go to war for her. When things came her way that were good, I was actually more excited than she was. Same with me. We are kinda the same type people. We work around the clock. One thing you’ll never see me do is ‘Woo! Yay! I did great!’ I never take a victory lap because I’m always the second it happens because anybody ever writes a good article about us you know, duck, because the next one they are going to take your head off.”
Donny asked Joe about Trump trashing Mika. How did Joe get through it without wanting to go “beat the shit out of” Trump? Donny then voices what absolutely no one is thinking — he tells Joe that physically injuring the President of the United States “probably wouldn’t be a good idea because you would be in jail and the Secret Service guys would shoot you and it would be a bad thing.”
Right on Donny. Getting shot by the Secret Service would be bad. But Joe’s cool. He doesn’t take any of it personally. In fact, he’ll cash in, watch his ratings and name ID soar, and take Friday’s off to fuck around with his newfound music career as Trump bludgeons them.
“Mika and I don’t take the insults personally,” he said. “Everybody expected Mika to break down and cry. Everybody expected Mika to be distraught by that. First we kinda laughed about it then we were like, ‘okay how do we handle this?’ Because we have a job to do and we can’t get down in the mud with him personally because we still have to analyze and report on this. So here’s the interesting thing. Just to be really blunt, I wasn’t as angry at Donald Trump because he is like a 4-year-old kid. Right? He can’t help himself and I don’t grant him absolution. I say it’s pathetic.”
Let’s end this awfulness on a high note, shall we?
As in the New York Mag story, Joe tells Donny about his father’s death, his split with his second wife and the depression that followed him around for a few years.
“You can’t imagine me slinking around my house,” he said.
At this point, Donny imagines Joe in his boxer shorts eating Fruit Loops.
“Yes, Fruit Loops. Bridget Jones. I was being Bridget Jones,” Joe said.
And then — like a flash of lightening out of nowhere — Joe just knew Mika was “the one.”
“You know, I realized that she was the one and everything has worked out,” he told Donny.
The divorces are all final. The alimony checks are in the mail. The ex-spouses are so far keeping their mouths shut. The National Enquirer article branding them as “sleazy” has been published.
It’s the stuff of fairy tales.