Wednesday, March 17, 2010

It's TV Time: the campy, the boring and the downright nauseating.

I came home from my week at sea to find a LOT of dvr'd tv waiting to be watched... everything from The Academy Awards to my regular tv shows (ohmyGOSH how I love THE GOOD WIFE). I dove right in and watched the major awards on The Oscars, not possessing of enough time to watch the entire langweilig and interminable show (is it me or have award shows simply become too self important and serious?) and I actually cried four times - because I love that Mo'Nique went from being a big, garish, foul mouthed stand up comic to a respected (and well deserved Oscar winner; because I have wanted Jeff Bridges to have an Oscar since STARMAN; because I have always believed in Sandra Bullock and dangnab, she gives good speech; and because finally, finally, finally, a woman director has won an Academy Award. Wait. I cried five times. The John Hughes tribute. Wow. That was my youth in that montage. It amazes me, how much a part of my life his films were. In fact, I'm going to stop, mid-story, and list the films he made that either left an indelible mark on my life or marked a major time in life. Go with me, see what memories each film brings to you...

The Breakfast Club
Sixteen Candles
Ferris Bueller's Day Off
She's Having a Baby
Pretty In Pink
Home Alone
Only the Lonely
Mr Mom

and though I never got into the Vacation movies, I couldn't help but say "oh YEAH.. I remember those", each time a clip flashed on the screen during the montage. I'm serious, what would the world have been like, what would our lives have been like without Breakfast, Ferris, Sixteen and Alone? I actually never saw Some Kind of Wonderful but I will, now - I don't know how it got by me. And She's Having a Baby and Only the Lonely are actually two of my personal favourites. Also - were it not for Pretty in Pink, I would not have been introduced to one of the most important pieces of music in my LIFE: Try a Little Tenderness. A lot of people don't like the remake of Miracle on 34th Street, too, by the way -- I am not one of them. Love it.

So this little bit of rambling is my own little tribute to John Hughes; a man who touched my life.

Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.

Once I had the Oscars out of the way I went directly to RuPaul's Drag Race. THAT is my shit! It's like crack to me. I love those hateful bitches and their misadventures (ALTHOUGH -- I have to admit I miss some of the adversity of last season's show -- Nina Flowers and Ongina and Shannel were so different, Bebe was so unique... it was like the United Colours of Benneton for Drag Queens; this season it's just pretty gurls. I miss the edge). Nevertheless, I watched every episode of Drag Race and Untucked, back to back and went to bed, sated.

So this morning I log onto Facebook and see a status message by my friend, the brilliant performer James Beaman, about American Idol. He said something about having only just been exposed to this season of AI and how underimpressed he is by the singers. Now, usually, when I hear an actor criticize other actors (and by that, I mean performer... be it a dancer talking about a dancer, a singer talking about a singer or a thespian talking about a thespian) I take it as genetic makeup. You know that joke about how many actresses does it take to screw in a lightbulb? All of them - one to do it and all the rest to say "I could've done it better"? You know that joke? It's funny because it's true. This is what actors do. So I usually just don't pay attention to these types of comments. However. I trust Jamie's opinion. He is so talented. He is so talented. He is so talented. I trust his thoughts and opinions on things like this. So this morning I went to my dvr'd American Idol and began watching what I have missed, being away.

I gotta tell ya. I have been thinking this and saying it, sporadically, ever since this season began.


More importantly....


Put this tired piece of meat to sleep. Just walk it down to the ASPCA, pay the twenty bucks it's worth and put the poor, dying animal down. It's day is done.

All this season the judges have been talking about how this is the most talented group they've had on the show and I find myself thinking "if I were one of the past contestants, I would be insulted.. offended." It's actually difficult for me to come out with these harsh words because I can't even sing so it isn't fair for me to criticize them for doing something that they are, clearly, more equiped to do than I... But I'm going to.

I'm not saying they are all terrible. I like Crystal. I like DeDe. I just watched their hour from last week so it's fresh in my head. I am about to watch the boys, so I can't tell you who I like or don't like; it has, after all, been about 11 days since I saw my last episode of the show. I remember that I want to put that fat personal trainer on a diet and also ask him to be a little less pretentious when he performs - though I cannot deny he is a good singer. I remember that I like the little boy from Texas but feel like he needs to shake off the nerves. There's another boy from Texas I like, too; but I think that's because I want to make out with him. I'll know their names after I watch their hour from last week. But I seem to recall that, several times this season, almost each of these contestants has had serious pitch problems... usually erring on the Flat side but, occasionally, the sharps turn up. I remember noticing, several times this season, that they are singing songs that are so far below their range that their low notes are downright painful to listen to. There have also been some sad reachings for high notes that don't exist but that is less prevalent than those horrifying low notes that peel the paint off the walls of my Tuscan-style kitchen.

Here's the thing, though....

Even worse than the quality of the performances on the show is the inane and idiotic, not to mention completely repetetive and boring, comments from the judges. If I have to hear Randy Jackson say "yo yo yo" one more time, I may just take a steel spike and put it through my frontal lobe. As much as I love everything else Ellen does, I feel (often) like she is just making shit up because she doesn't have the musical background to make an educated critique about a performance. I actually love Kara's comments - they are almost always well thought out and have a point. Simon is rarely wrong.. but his attempts at being witty have become boring. He tends to say the same things week after week when it would be simpler and more to the point to just say "i hated that". When Paula left the show it took an important dynamic away from it... we need her crazy.

Actually... what we need is for the producers to just admit that it's over.

People are still watching AI (including me) because it has become habit. It is not because it is good or even interesting. It is at the jump the shark stage (has been for a couple seasons now) and Cousin Oliver is the one on the skis. Quick. Before we have to suffer one more moment of this interminable torture...

Put us and the show out of our collective misery.

And you can start with freakin' irritating, exhausting, exasperating Ryan Seacrest.



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