For those missing their fix of The Daily Show, writers from The Daily Show give you…Not The Daily Show.

The AMPTP has agreed to go back to the bargaining table with the WGA, but under a “force majeure” clause Sony and Universal are locking out actors in what appears to be an attempt to drive a wedge between SAG and the writers. Which is a bit of an odd decision, given that the SAG contract is up in June of 2008 and they will no doubt be looking toward the WGA to support them. The net effect may wind up being an acceleration of the actors into the dispute.

Since the DGA contract expires at the same time as the SAG contract, it should be interesting to see how the directors come down in all of this — they have a very different relationship with the AMPTP than the writers do, a lot more leverage and the ability to shut production down in a heartbeat.

Meanwhile Garth Brooks does the right thing:

Garth Brooks canceled his appearances on The View and Ellen in support of the writers strike underway in Hollywood.

Brooks was going to appear on the shows to support the release of his greatest hits plus disc, “The Ultimate Hits.”

His publicist said, “This is the first time in many years that he has not done television in support of his music. His first appearance on television was to have been The Tonight Show, however the strike happened that day. We believe he is the first artist with product in the marketplace to not have the support of these appearances. Garth is proud of the position he has taken since he hopes to be a writer in the not too distant future.”

And Haskell Wexler (In The Heat of the Night, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest) has a few words for those crossing the picket lines, entitled “Together We Bargain, Divided We Beg.”

There will be a big march down Hollywood Boulevard tomorrow, with the writers joined by actors, musicians, Teamsters, SEIU and other union employees. They’ll be assembling at Hollywood and Ivar at 1:00 pm with the march beginning at 1:30.

Sounds like fun.