It was one of the most unusual things seen at a political convention in many years: An aging movie legend, an icon of manliness and grit worldwide, doing a bizarre turn as a slightly dotty older uncle, talking to a naughty imaginary friend in a chair and making a series of rambling, sometimes risqué remarks — all at the expense of the nation's sitting president.
Clint Eastwood took the stage to great expectations Thursday night, his appearance whispered at all week as rumors swirled about the identity of a special mystery guest. But in a voice that sometimes was difficult to hear, the screen legend quickly did more to confuse the audience gathered at the Republican National Convention than anything else.
At first, Eastwood seemed to suck most of the excitement out of the convention center, leaving the crowd a bit nonplussed, a bit twittering in awkward embarrassment. By the end, the crowd was applauding his jokes, though hardly raucously. But Romney aides had serious faces as they watched the lengthy, unscripted moment, clearly a bit taken aback.
— Sally Buzbee
EDITOR'S NOTE — Convention Watch shows you the 2012 political conventions through the eyes of Associated Press journalists. Follow them on Twitter where available with the handles listed after each item.