14 Hairstyles of the Pundits

The Pompous-dour: Tucker Carlson. Popular in the Victorian Age, characterized by excessive — some might even say overcompensating — amounts of hair at the front of the head. Is he hiding a scar? (Bonus style note: Carson from Queer Eye’s new book says bow ties with suits are "always the wrong answer.")

The Pun-don’t: Jon Stewart. What, no comb-over? No politician bangs? No impossibly angular side part? This guy’s the anti-pundit.

The Bald Eagle: James Carville. The perfect symbol of essential American values: winged freedom, crossfire (in his marriage) and good old-fashioned capitalism. The hairdo screams, "Is there anything this man won’t do for cash?" A bird on the head is worth two in the hand.

The Tax Cut: Paula Zahn. "Look at me!," Zahn’s blond layers whisper. "I’m on CNN, sound like Jane Fonda, and have Jennifer Aniston’s old hair!" She’s less perky than Katie Couric and edgier than Matt Lauer — which isn’t saying much.

Photo by Norman Jean Roy

The Flying Nun: Judy Woodruff. Meg Ryan’s shag meets the steel plate, and the result is a flying nun. Evokes "wispy and carefree," but a Mac truck couldn’t move her big hair. She’s got left and right wings, and she’s ready to take flight.

The King’s Crown: Larry King. Everyone’s hair falls into a natural part-isanship. The comb-over is the classic for thinning hair, but King goes with the comb-back. God forbid he choose sides.

The Comb-back Kid: Bill Maher. There they are, the same flowing locks brushed away from the never-aging face — botox? Or just a miracle? Maher and his hair stand up for what he believes in, popular or not. And that’s great for sweeps.

The Phlegm Flip: Paul Wolfowitz. The Flip (a.k.a. villain hair) requires a lot of maintenance, but as Wolfowitz demonstrated in Fahrenheit 9/11, the only gel a real man needs is his own gob of spit. Look for this look in mental institutions near you.

The Wig Out: Aaron Brown. Brown just loves to stump us with complex issues, and he does it again with his hair. "Is that a terrible dye job or a rug-ged toupee? How does he get that 90-degree-angle part? How does he attach it so firmly to his forehead?" Only Brown himself could guide us toward these answers. Dare to dream.

The Desert Storm: Chris Matthews. Matthews’ sandy-(bottle?)-blond Midwestern football-player hair, which parts to the left, makes him appear to be the sweet boy next door. (Especially combined with his Kermit the Frog vocal stylings.) But the only boy-next-door Matthews really resembles is Dennis the Menace, hair style and all. "Sorry, Mr. Wilson."

Hair-Ass-Meant: Bill O’Reilly. Designed primarily to give the ears as much space as possible. (So O’Reilly can hear people whispering about his sexual exploits — literally, exploits.) Meanwhile, he’s still waiting for word on the color of his hair. Is it brown? Is it gray? Is it beige? Will his female colleagues suck on it?

The Left Out: Paul Begala. Just as he was ignored by Stewart and is overshadowed by Carville, Begala’s completely nondescript hair is barely part of the dialogue.

The Dark Streaker: Roger Altman. Until Altman, the hair world never knew you could enhance sloppy gray hair with brown streaks. Kudos.

The Re-Actor: Ben Affleck. This haircut tops the pricey charts. Affleck is just one of the actors who made a debut on the political scene. While his do may be hipper than most pundits’, he’s not all that different: a lot of shine, not a lot of body.


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