Donald Trump and Barbara Walters
Our top moments of the week:
14. The Ex Factor Award: Jenny doesn't know how to swim, so the sadistic producers of Fear Factor make her drive a car into water! When she and her ex/teammate Sean exit the car as it sinks, Jenny expects him to help her to dry land. But he doesn't. "He left her! Whoa! She's going under," host Joe Rogan says. The show's diving team rescues Jenny, who is understandably peeved at Sean. "I waited there for you," he says. Er, no, you didn't. And even if you did, she can't swim!
13. Nerdiest Trash Talk: Nothing less than first place on The Amazing Race would have sufficed for perfectionist Cindy and her fiancé Ernie. They eventually win the $1 million, but not before dissing the other two teams during the final leg. "It would be like losing to C students and we're A+ students," she says, a comment neither of them says they remember now. But we all know who the actual "A+ students" of Race were this season: Andy and Tommy — who won six legs before losing last week to "inferior" teams.
12. Most Frightened Baby (Or: Baby We're Most Frightened For) The newest member of the Real Housewives of Atlanta cast is Kim and Kroy's baby K.J., and if only his 1-day-old ears could process the terror around him. Not only has Kim shoved her dog, Chanel, in his face (because yeah, dogs won't bite babies!) and screamed about her aching vagina and K.J.'s surprising first poop, but it turns out that big sis Brielle isn't so fond of him. Watch out for her dagger eyes, K.J.!
11. Worst Christmas Miracle: What's worse than having to tell your boyfriend that you don't love him two days before Christmas? Having your roommate break the bad news without telling you! On New Girl, Nick, thinking Jess and Paul have already had "the talk," breaks his little weirdo heart while trying to comfort him. Would a little "light" choking make you feel better, Paul?
10. Least Suspenseful Cliff-hanger: Less than a month after marrying Kris Humphries, Kim Kardashian tells momager Kris Jenner that she's going off birth control so they can start a family on Kourtney and Kim Take New York. Her mom tries to talk her out of it, pointing out that the couple don't even live together. "Yeah, I'm prepared — I'm married," she replies. Kim eventually comes to her senses and tells that she isn't ready for kids... or marriage, as it turns out!
9. Worst Attitude: On Top Chef, Heather is paired with Beverly, aka her punching bag, in a team elimination challenge. When they wind up in the bottom three, Heather decides gripe to the judges about how Beverly spent two days peeling 400 shrimp during the last challenge. Uh, what exactly does that have to do with why you're standing at Judges' Table now? And how does throwing your teammate under the bus in a double elimination help you? Oh, wait, it doesn't.
8. Most Inappropriate Kiss: When Deb's therapist on Dexter floats the possibility that she might subconsciously be in love with her brother, she promptly pooh-poohs her theory. But that night, she dreams that she and Dex share some Chinese food... and then a passionate kiss. Yeah yeah, they're adoptive siblings, but it's still pretty horrifying that Hollywood thinks incest is a hot trend.
7. Weirdest Trip Through Time: After he is visited in his dreams by Chewbacca, Glee's Artie is inspired to create a public-access Christmas special that is two parts Judy Garland and one part Star Wars. (Together at last!) In the charmingly retro black-and-white special, "holiday roommates" Blaine and Kurt welcome their friends to their winter chalet, where everyone breaks the fourth wall in a fashion even Zack Morris would shake his head at. We know Lima, Ohio, is a bit on the conservative side, but does that really mean we have to revert to 1963's holiday traditions?
6. Most Arresting Reunion: Eleven long episodes after Alicia kicked Kalinda to the curb for sleeping with Peter, The Good Wife's power duo reunites when Alicia learns that Kalinda was the one who found Grace and surprises the usually all-knowing private investigator by springing her from jail. Afterwards, Kalinda tries to downplay her hand in saving Grace, but Alicia insists on thanking her and (appears to) at least start to forgive Kalinda for her past indiscretion. Please don't ever fight again, ladies.
5. Best Use of Jazz: The penultimate episode of Homeland's riveting first season goes deep inside Carrie's manic (though not illogical) flight as Saul orders her chaotic Abu Nazir research into a neat, color-coded timeline on Carrie's living room wall. Unfortunately, when her CIA bosses catch wind (via Brody) of her classified redecoration scheme, David storms her apartment to place her on administrative leave and confiscate her rainbow-tinted wall of information. As Carrie rages against the intelligence machine, the audio of her thrashing gradually drops out and is replaced by a soothing, but still frenzied jazz number. It's a nice metaphor for Carrie's self-destruction, as we can only helplessly watch her fall, not fully aware of the importance of what she's saying.
4. Indecent (Reaction to a) Proposal Award: Christmas is the time to tell the people you love just how much you care, so Ellen fan Jacob asks her to help him stage a surprise proposal to his girlfriend, Jodi, before Ellen launches her 12 Days of Giveaways segment. Jacob gets down on one knee in front of a weeping Jodi (they look like tears of joy, at least initially). "I can't. ... I'm sorry," Jodi says, and before we can process this shameful public rejection, a Christmas carol that signals it's time for free stuff blares in the studio, the audience rises to its feet and cheers as the cameras cut away from Jacob and Jodi. What the what? It's riveting train-wreck TV, but it's also a big fake-out. It turns out that "Jacob" is an Ellen staff member who staged a similar hoax before last year's first giveaway segment. No wonder Ellen was laughing!
3. Most Hair-Raising Interview: Barbara Walters names Donald Trump as one of her 10 most fascinating people of the year, which is clearly a clever ruse so she can do what every American secretly wants to: touch the onion loaf that Trump calls his hair. "Is this part of your image or is it covering a bald spot?" she chirps. Trump claims he's always worn the comb-up-over-back-and-around look and challenges Walters to give it a yank to test its veracity. "After that, everyone knows it's real," Trump says after Walters musses his 'do like a flirty coed. ("I still think it's a hairpiece," Babs said later.)
2. Most Shocking Death: Boardwalk Empire's Nucky Thompson proves he's no longer "half a gangster" in the HBO drama's second season finale. After Nucky marries Margaret to keep her from testifying against him, he vows to turn over a new leaf. But that all goes out the window when, after an apologetic Jimmy Darmody successfully stages the suicide of the last witness in Nucky's trial, Nucky returns the favor by putting two bullets into Jimmy's face as payback for trying to have Nucky killed. Jimmy may have seen it coming (he gave his son his dog tags, after all), but we couldn't believe the show actually went for it. R.I.P., Jimmy.
1. Best Birth: We're pretty certain we'll never see another TV birth like Vivien's haunting, bloody delivery on American Horror Story. It was gross enough when we learned that one twin was essentially eating the other while they cooked in mom's womb. But watching as Constance distributed the newborns to ghostly, not-at-all-stable adoptive parents made it all the more heartbreaking. Hopefully, Ghost Vivien will get some much-needed peace now from her sniveling wimp of a husband. Likely? Nah.
What were your top moments?