On ‘Jimmy Kimmel,’ the Talented Mr. Cruz

Like the rest of his generation—never mind his politics—he’s a child of “Letterman” and “The Simpsons.”

Ted Cruz appears on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” on March 30, 2016.

Photographer: Randy Holmes/ABC via Getty Images

If there is a sweet-spot persona for Ted Cruz to hit in public appearances, it is, for many audiences, “not as repulsive as you might have previously suspected.” Cruz is often considered, among both political opponents and congressional colleagues, a bit of a reptilian creature, the sort of Nixonian calculator who inspires memes that he’s the Zodiac killer and widely shared videos about a strange thing he does with his lips while accepting applause. But there’s something surprising about Cruz that sneaks out occasionally, like on Wednesday night’s appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live!: He’s incredibly comfortable, and almost even appealing, on television.

To continue reading this article you must be a Bloomberg Professional Service Subscriber.