When the President does it, that means that it is not illegal. -Richard Nixon to David Frost
British television journalist David Frost is dead at 74. While it isn’t necessarily clear that a man who spent time as a comedian and game show host ought to have his visage chiseled into Journalism Rushmore, there is simply no way to ignore his substantive moments, which are headlined by his famous interview series with disgraced former president Richard Nixon.
This is more about Nixon, perhaps, but as we reflect upon Frost’s career and the public reception of the play and film about their encounter, it has become nearly impossible to think of him in any other context, at least on this side of the Atlantic. And if a media personality is to be judged on one moment, what better one than the events commencing on March 23, 1977?
After a community theatre performance in late 2011 of Frost/Nixon, my companions and I found ourselves discussing a topic that has come to intrigue me a great deal: the curious rehabilitation of Richard Nixon. Continue reading RIP: David Frost and the rehabilitation of Richard Nixon