American Idol
For the first — and probably only — time ever, can I say that I like George Bush. Thanks to whatever he was bumbling about last night, I got a performance show rather than the usual vote-off harshness to keep me warm tonight. And the kids turned it out! The movie theme could have been a train wreck. After all, there are too many Kenny Loggins and Irene Cara tunes running loose out there. Just imagining LaToya London strapped with "Danger Zone" gave me the shingles. As did the sight of Quentin Tarantino at the judges' table. That man is downright creepy. But he was on hand to help out with the theme competition — and pitch Kill Bill: Vol. 2 — which is fine. No ears were sliced off in the making of his guest appearance. And my girl LaToya, she brought it, wrapped it and gave us "Somewhere" from West Side Story like nobody's biz. Even better was Fantaseee-ia's "Summertime." And Jennifer Hudson's selection from The Bodyguard? I'm sorry, Miss Whitney Houston, you have a problem and it's not just crack being whack. It's this one taking your song and treating it better than Bobby even knows how to. I think I smell the beginning of the end for the boys, though. Really, JPL, "Jailhouse Rock"? Come on, dude. And John Stevens, quit with the Rat Pack crap. You're 16. Go download some illegal Dirt McGirt and go wild.

The Big House
Oh, I'm sorry. Is it 1978 already? Because I could swear this cookie-cutter comedy was like, a lost episode of What's Happening! There's the sassy little sister, the round doofus and the stern but loving mama. All that was missing was Rog and a pair of tickets to a Doobie Brothers concert. Not that Kevin Hart isn't a funny guy. He's just a funny guy trapped in a throwback minstrel misfire. And what is with shows set in Philadelphia sucking? My 'hood pride can't take much more, between our near miss with The Real World and that Kim Delaney dullard, Philly. Thank God for Cold Case. Hell, thank God for Angie back in the day. It was no What's Happening!, but at least it was Donna Pescow. Props to the psychic writers though, for having Kevin and Eartha's boyfriend cheer on the Flyers. How did they know that the Broad Street Bullies would be pulling off a playoff shutout against the New Jersey Devils just as I was shutting this thing off? And let's all raise a big foam finger to goalie Robert Esche, while we're at it.

The O.C.
You knew Luke wasn't going to die, right? He wasn't 90210's dorky Scott Scanlon or Dawson's Creek's witchy Abby. He just happened to tag Marissa's mom. Bad, yes, but not kill-worthy. Besides, having seen Melinda Clarke in this month's Stuff magazine defiling a leopard bikini, can ya really blame him? But Kiki's pop may want to rethink blackmailing Coop into supporting his marriage to Julie, now that the season is heading for a mother-daughter showdown finale. Which, by the way, could be as catty fun as...

The Bachelor
Where the glamour-length claws are coming out. Trish alone is enough to turn this group into the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling. Why Jesse didn't heed Jenny the spy's warning about the money-grubbing model is beyond me. Perhaps he's taken too many balls to the head. God knows some of his hopefuls probably have. How else can you explain Kristy taking herself out of the running before the rose ceremony? Child, you looked scrappy. You could have taken that baby-hating harpy. Wisely, when it came down to passing out the buds, he also picked a few winners from his big plate of delicious. Now, if he'd just quit with the hot-tub hookups. It's too Bob Guiney to deal with.

Dateline NBC
Call me a curmudgeon if you want. I still think a newsmagazine that goes "behind the scenes" at The Apprentice flirts with being the most inconsequential piece of pseudo-journalism since... well, since Stone Phillips and co. blew up those cars. I'm guessing that the network wanted us to see this as a serious report on Trump and the art of his TV deal, rather than the extended ad for Thursday's finale that it actually was. Oh, audition tapes? How clip-showy. Scenes from Bill's himbo photo shoot? That makes me take him more seriously. Omarosa bitching even more about her downfall? Put a cork in it honey and go pick up Jessica Simpson like you were supposed to. The biggest shock was that Stone wasn't sporting a "You're Fired" t-shirt from the NBC Experience gift shop at Rockefeller Center. And that producer Mark Burnett thinks most reality shows are low-rent. That's rich, coming from a guy who gave us Jerri Manthey. Twice.

101 Most Starlicious Makeovers
Now, I'm not exactly sure what starlicious tastes like, but I can only guess that the folks who think J.Lo's transformation from Fly Girl to a Lord of the Engagement Rings have been chowing down on some pretty interesting berries. 'Cause that ain't tasty. That's tragic. And as much as we love Prince William, again, not so much a makeover as it was puberty that turned him from a royal terror to a regal treat. But I loves me these countdowns. They never fail to deliver classic shots of fallen celebs. Oh, Farrah, how I long for the days when you were just a Fawcett-Majors instead of a major crazy.

Chappelle's Show
Speaking of crazy, this guy is insane! But in a good way. He's like a less-flammable Richard Pryor with all the inflammatory material. No wonder my surly rock-star little brother becomes almost animated at the mere mention of this show. The bit on President Black Bush and Black Tony Blair was what comedy should be: risky and right on. It takes a brave man to mock our nation's dysfunctional race relations, and an even braver one to serve up a docu-spoof about the first African American to use a white bathroom. Trust me, you will never hear the terms "mud butt" and "historical dump" on network television. Then again, I never thought I would see Paula Abdul and Quentin Tarantino swooning over a Gershwin tune together, either. So maybe there's still hope.