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Ben Silverman, Closet Nerd

Courtesy of 20th Century Fox

NBC's new president, Ben Silverman, is presumably working hard this month to make sure that his slate of fall shows reverses the network's long, tragic decline. But he still had time to give a quote to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette about why there are so many nerds on TV these days! In doing so, he reveals that a hard-partying, tanned, successful executive is maybe not the best person to hold forth on the charms of nerddom.

"We're in a moment of pop culture and pop humanity where the world's a little murky, and we're looking for some purity. I think part of what's interesting about nerds is there is this sense of purity to them. They're not always governed by the way you look or how rich you are. They're governed by a different set of rules, like intelligence."


Yes, in this desperate moment of pop humanity, nerds — sweet, unsullied nerds — shine out as an innocent beacon of hope to a troubled people everywhere. Governed by a mysterious set of rules called "intelligence," nerds offer the handsome and wealthy a chance to realize what is truly important in this world. Also, what you call "purity," most nerds call "virginity."

"Hopefully there's a popular shift in celebrating intelligence again," Silverman said. "We haven't necessarily had the most intellectual leaders, not the most intelligent role models, and there's a push to bring brains back into the mainstream."


We hate to break it to you, Ben, but it isn't brains you're bringing back into the mainstream. It's breasts.

The geeks shall inherit TV [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]
Earlier: Vulture coverage of Ben Silverman