Cable news is a frenetically paced beast in which seemingly random people get invited to speak on topics just because the network needs talking heads to comment on stuff. Often, these people are not properly vetted, which can lead to awkward exchanges between the hapless host and their guest. (To wit: I was once invited on TMZ's TV show to talk about black metal, despite knowing next to nothing on the subject, and ended up getting in an argument with host Harvey Levin just to fill dead air space.)
And even when guests are totally qualified to speak on a subject, there's really no accounting for what someone will do or say on live TV. Maybe they're participating in a segment on a subject that they find boring, or they're faced with a question they deem beneath them. Or they could just be total jokers and want to mess around on national television. This can lead to stuff like Andrew WK making a grotesque face on Fox News while talking about infidelity, 2 Chainz arguing with Nancy Grace about weed, or Cam'ron appearing on 60 Minutes to talk to Anderson Cooper about the "catchy hip-hop slogan 'Stop Snitchin'." (Or Cam'ron on Bill O'Reilly, which is 12 minutes of general amazingness).
That's the long way of explaining Jon Hendren's weird appearance on HLN's The Daily Share, where the Twitter jokester who goes by the handle @fart switched gears halfway through a conversation with Yasmin Vossoughian about Edward Snowden and began talking about Edward Scissorhands.
What makes this great is that for whatever reason the host doesn't acknowledge that Hendren is acting odd at all, even though he's saying stuff like, "To cast him out, making him invalid to society, simply because he had scissors for hands... people didn't get scared until he started sculpting shrubs into dinosaur shapes and whatnot," and "Edward Scissorhands is a complete hero to me."
I caught up with Hendren via email to get a behind-the-scenes report of his time on HLN, as well as discuss the moral relativity of the actions of Edwards Snowden and Scissorhands.
VICE: How did you end up on HLN?
Jon Hendren: No clue. I got an email last night asking me to Skype in and comment. I said yes immediately.
Did you come into the interview ready to talk about Edward Scissorhands or was that a "game-time decision"?
That idea came up pretty quickly after I got the email. I tend to get the two confused anyway.
One of the funniest parts of the clip is that the host doesn't seem to understand what's going on, she just sort of steamrolls over you as if you were still talking about Snowden. Do you think she realized what you were doing?
That's what I don't get. I expected to be cut off as soon as I mentioned scissors for hands or whatever, but she kept talking to me? I couldn't see anything on my end of the Skype call so I had no clue how it looked or what her reaction would be, so I just kept talking.
Edward Snowden helped expose that the government was spying on its citizens, Edward Scissorhands made an ice sculpture of an angel that looked like a girl he had a crush on. Who is the bigger hero and why?
This question is silly. Scissorhands.
It's arguable that though he was acting out of an inherent sense of patriotism, Snowden's leaks inadvertently endangered American citizens' lives, while Edward Scissorhands accidentally cut the hand of the woman he loved while making that ice sculpture. Who is the bigger monster and why?
Morality is relative. We all have to make those determinations for ourselves. Edward Scissorhands's heart was a cookie or something, but in the end, he was perhaps more human than us all.
Would you care to speak a bit more about the government's persecution of Edward Scissorhands?
Let him out of that castle, guys. C'mon.
Follow Drew on Twitter.