ROGER EBERT: Smooth criminal.
  • ROGER EBERT: Smooth criminal.

In an email subtly titled "YOU WILL BLOG THIS!!!", my esteemed boss, Wm. Steven Humphrey, politely informed me of a fact:

It is your sworn duty as a film journalist to blog about Roger Ebert's new prosthetic chin.

If you don't, I will, and it won't be pretty.

As I like my job, and as I would like to keep it, and as part of keeping it is bending to the frequently insane demands and diatribes of Mr. Humphrey (see also: this), well, here you go, Blogtown: a blog post about Roger Ebert's new prosthetic chin.

In one of his characteristically charming blog posts, Ebert outlines the process behind the new prosthesis, noting why he'll be wearing it on his new TV show.

I will wear the prosthesis on the new television show. That's not to fool anyone, because my appearance is widely known. It will be used in a medium shot of me working in my office, and will be a pleasant reminder of the person I was for 64 years. Symbolically, it's as if my illness never happened and, hey, here I still am, on the show with these new kids. When people see the "Roger's Office" segment, they'll notice my voice more than my appearance.

At the beginning of this process I assumed I would wear the new prosthesis whenever I left the house, so that "nobody would know." But everybody knows. The photograph of me that appeared in Esquire even found its way onto billboards in China. And something else has happened since that day in the hospital: I accept the way I look. Lord knows I paid the dues.

So there you go. Now Ebert has a badass new chin/beard, you know all about it, and I get to keep my job. Everybody wins.