Nearly felled by a stroke in 2004, Clark worked very hard indeed to make it back this far:
I give Dick Clark much respect for courage and persistence, and wish him only the best.
Clark, sitting behind a desk with the street scene in the background, sounded hoarse and occasionally was hard to understand, but he said, "I wouldn't have missed this for the world."
"Last year I had a stroke," he explained. "It left me in bad shape. I had to teach myself how to walk and talk again. It's been a long, hard fight. My speech is not perfect but I'm getting there."
But I hope that he steps down now, having made his point that he's still among the living, and makes the permanent hosting handoff to Ryan Seacrest, who did 95% of the heavy lifting last night anyway.
It can be "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve" forever, as far as I'm concerned--his production company owns the night--but he should watch it from his living room next year, like the rest of us. He's earned it.
Dick Clark Returns to TV to Mark New Year - AP via Yahoo! News
Update: Carrie has a slightly harsher take:
Good on ya, Dick, you survived the stroke. But for God's sake, for the rest of us you're a goddamn memento mori, and New Year's Eve is a horrible enough holiday without having to see you and reflect on The Way of All Flesh. Get the hell off my TV screen.