Ideally, a news anchor is supposed to act as a calming, unemotional intermediary between the audience and the terrible things happening out in the world. But, unbeknownst to many, beneath that relaxed, professional exterior is often nothing but a roiling sea of rage just waiting to spill over during the commercial break. At least, that’s the impression you get from this footage of MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell losing his goddamn mind over a few technical glitches and some incessant hammering.
The eight-minute clip released by Mediaite comes from a particularly difficult broadcast back in August, during which O’Donnell attempts to keep his composure while his earpiece repeatedly malfunctions. Then, in a moment reminiscent of Bill O’Reilly’s own meltdown or Christian Bale’s lights freak out, a distant hammering sound transforms the typically mild-mannered O’Donnell into the profanity-shouting Bostonian we always wanted him to be.
With all the wild, spasmodic gestures and quotes like “Who’s asking for a Labor Day rundown in my ear?” the video has the feel of probing documentary on a man coming unglued. But, through all the shouting and occasional pen-throwing, O’Donnell manages to still deliver the news like a professional. Of course, that didn’t stop him from taking to Twitter to apologize for his behavior after the video was leaked.
Don’t be so hard on yourself, Lawrence. Nobody stopped the goddamn hammering!