Dick Cavett was the most cerebral talk show host that I ever had the pleasure of watching. Apart from his vast foundation of knowledge was the perfect broadcast tone of his voice, and his ability to use language so effectively. It was reason enough to tune in his show just to see and hear him. But it also is fair to say Cavett had some of the most engrossing guests that any television show booked. Due to Cavett’s show I came to know such intriguing and talented people such as Tommy Tune, and the reason Broadway mattered. I also came to appreciate barbed wit. There was no better example of that talent than the slicing language between Norman Mailer and Gore Vidal. It remains a classic video clip to watch again and again.
2 thoughts on “Sunday Echoes: Norman Mailer and Gore Vidal Feud On Dick Cavett Show”
Ha! That is a great clip. Mailer certainly was full of himself, wasn’t he? Cavett’s comeback about getting two chairs to contain Mailer’s ego was classic, as was his final jibe about folding the question sheet five ways and putting it where the moon don’t shine.
I just found out that the other guest was Janet Flanner who was the Paris correspondent for The New Yorker magazine from the 1920’s until the late 70’s. She held her own pretty well, I think. At least she brought Mailer up short with her comment about being bored by him!
Thanks so much for the info about Janet Flanner as I was unable to locate a name for her. I truly appreciate the info.
Have a nice evening.