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Congdon, Not You, Is Person of the Year

Time magazine may have named You its Person of the Year for 2006, but ubiquitous online It Girl Amanda Congdon doesn't think you deserve the honor.

Congdon, a 25-year-old actress who got her start as the coat-check girl on NBC's reality series The Restaurant, achieved Web celebrity last year as the face of quirky online news show Rocketboom. Now you can watch her geek-chic musings and trademark hair-flips in her video blogs for ABC News Now, Blip.tv and, coming soon, a broadband comedy collaboration with HBO.

Just don't count yourself among Congdon's cohort of media revolutionaries.

Her year-end video blog (“Please don't make Amanda mad by calling this TV,” we are warned) at starringamanda- congdon.com begins harmlessly enough, with Congdon asking passersby in Manhattan how they feel about seeing themselves in the Mylar mirror on Time's YouTube-inspired Person of the Year cover.

But Congdon's magnanimity ends there as she goes on to clarify that “the collective 'You' is not Person of the Year,” since “not everyone participated in the media revolution.”

It's the millions of “bloggers, podcasters and video bloggers” like her who should get the credit. “We,” says Congdon, “are the People of the Year, not You.”

So much for the democratization of the media.

MIA at TCM: 'Lavender Hill'

If you're already missing those old clips of Chevy Chase's Gerald Ford-inspired pratfalls on Saturday Night Live now that coverage of the former president's death has ended, good news: Chase will be back on TV next week, this time to talk about some favorite old movies—and plug a new one—as part of Turner Classic Movies' Guest Programmer series.

“It's so hard to pick your top 10 or top four,” Chase tells TCM host Robert Osborne in a chat slated to run with his movie picks Jan. 15.

Apparently so. Guest programmers normally pick four favorites, but Chase's night offers only three: Lawrence of Arabia, The Gold Rush and Rashomon. What, he couldn't find a fourth in TCM's library of more than 150,000 titles?

Actually, he did: Alec Guinness comedy The Lavender Hill Mob. Unfortunately, the selection—and Chase's taped comments on it—had to be dropped when TCM rescheduled the Chase program from December to January to coincide with the delayed release of his new film, Funny Money. According to a TCM spokeswoman, the channel's window for running the 1951 classic expired at the end of 2006.

Just as well. With the epic Lawrence of Arabia eating away four hours of the night, Lavender Hill Mob wouldn't get going until 3 a.m.—when most insomniacs are watching old SNL reruns.

Razor's Edge

Here's one nice thing about having your own late-night show on network TV: Don't feel like shaving? Just turn it into a comedy bit.

That was Jimmy Kimmel's solution when he returned from vacation last week with a beard-in-progress and declared it “Beard Week” on ABC's Jimmy Kimmel Live.

“It would be selfish to keep it to myself and not share it,” Kimmel joked in an interview with B&C last week. “It is my gift to America. More importantly, it covers up a couple of my chins.”

Kimmel and Executive Producer Jill Leiderman hatched a plan to have Kimmel keep the beard until Friday, when he would trim it but leave a mustache for, that's right, “Mustache Friday.”

Naturally, their thoughts turned to what to do with the facial hair once it's clipped.

“I think we're going to send the actual beard to the Smithsonian, where it will hang next to Archie Bunker's chair,” Kimmel says. “Or if I am feeling charitable, maybe I'll auction if off and donate the proceeds to Oprah's school in Africa.”

Leiderman was just proud of her host for living the dream of all the regular schmoes who have to put cold razor to skin before trudging off to work: “Jimmy is not afraid of being the most hirsute talk-show host in late night.”

With John Eggerton and Ben Grossman

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