Could it be that the guy formerly known as Newsboy has grown up? When he surfaced in the first of the Eating Media Lunch specials a couple of weeks ago, he looked all adult, sporting his smart suit and real moniker - Jeremy Wells - as he went through security checks at the paranoid Republican National Convention in St Paul, Minnesota.
We even learned his second name is James, or Jimes, as the lady questioning him kept repeating, provoking a laconic, wolfish grin.
Wells does wolfish grins very well, a welcome contrast from his usual deadpan non-expression. He was resolutely deadpan when he wandered around the "morbidly obese" Minnesota State Fair, pestering innocents about the issue of bestiality, insisting we have a terrible problem in New Zealand. Lord knows we probably won't be getting too many tourists from that neck of the woods any time soon - which may be a good thing.
He really pushed it. One guy, who had a huge pig in a tiny pen, told him he was "off topic" and Wells was eventually cornered by the cops who accused him of "inappropriate questions". They let him off when he produced a Mark Sainsbury business card.
Anyone who thinks Republicans don't have a sense of humour might have been surprised by the screams of laughter from a female delegate who thought his bestiality curiosity was hilarious. But it did become rather tiresome.
At the convention, a moment Wells had "dreamed about since he was 30", the camera panned over a bevy of face-lifted zombies and Wells hammered the bestiality issue. On reflection, given the occasion, it may have been appropriate after all.
Last week, Wells took a peek into the political future with a Paranormal Panel of psychics and mediums in "an atmosphere more charged than Tony Veitch and Millie Holmes put together". As the panel watched the first debate between Helen Clark and John Key, they collapsed into an entirely predictable male vs female squabble.
You could never accuse EML of being cohesive. On a vaguely related political theme, Wells took himself off to Hamilton East, a suburb he described as "a harmless pimple growing on the bum of Hamilton", and cornered two gormless guys trying to get their New World Order Party off the ground. The future of the NWOP is also predictable.
Wells reverted to his adolescent ways with the talkback radio on-air wanking cartoon skit, which managed to be both squirmingly offensive and funny, winding up by accusing John Tamihere of indulging - verbally - every day.
Meanwhile, in Tonga, in a seamless segue, Wells attempted to attend the coronation of King George V. The lavish madness of King George was attended by A-list celebs like Michael Hill, jeweller, and perhaps the Briscoes woman. "It was time to party like 1959", and Wells wandered along a filthy beach as he mused upon the poverty of the kingdom's people as contrasted with the wealth of its monocled ruler.
As the camera panned across a group of kids banging away on old batteries and tin cans, they turned and grinned. "Don't show those happy faces!" cried Wells.
What is the point of EML and indeed, Wells? I think its secret is that beneath the suit and the monotone voice, the entire EML team has no shame. Nothing is too low, too puerile or sacred. If that means never having to grow up, on screen anyway, all power to them. We are going to need Newsboy-Wells over the next three years. The National-Act-Maori Party-United Future lineup is going to provide a priceless pageant of pickings.