Nearly five months passed between the time I got my first look at the miraculous Pushing Daisies pilot and the second episode. It was worth the wait. I am officially in love.Flashback (I wish I could count back the days, hours, minutes and seconds as precisely as Jim Dale does in his spot-on narration): Its the week before the network upfronts in May, and Im in Los Angeles working on the TV Guide Networks Americas Next Producer show when a studio exec not even associated with Pushing Daisies leaks me a copy of the pilot, which Id heard was good but had no idea was THIS good. From the moment I saw it, I was enchanted and could only hope that fellow critics and viewers with open minds and open hearts would share my enthusiasm. I was also so satisfied by what Id seen that I couldnt help wondering if theyd be able to pull it off on a weekly basis.Flash to the second week of October, and in brilliant high definition, I watch the second epis...
After eight competitive weeks, Denver resident and youngest contestant Gwen Uszuko was named America's Next Producer in the season finale of TV Guide Network's new reality series.Uszuko's creative pitches, including an hour-long newsroom drama and a Las Vegas-based show, beat out New Yorker Jessica Iaccarino.The 22-year-old winner walks away with $100,000 in cash, a first-look deal with TV Guide Network, a production office in Hollywood and other goodies, like a MacBook, an HD monitor and Final Cut Studio editing software.When asked what she would do with her winnings, Uszuko replied, "I'm really thankful for a show like America's Next Producer, because it gave me an amazing opportunity to showcase my ideas and prove that, as young as I am, I have what it takes to run with the big dogs. I am extremely excited to work with TV Guide Network and bring my ideas and energy to Hollywood." Megan Cherkezian
Question: As a fan of your column, I know you dislike Big Brother, and I won't try to sway your opinion, but I have to say that I've been disappointed by how CBS has handled recent controversies about their reality shows like BB and Kid Nation. Every year I expect one or two contestants to be irksome and display some repugnant behavior, but as I'm sure you've heard, many contestants this season have been either vapid, racist, sexist, abusive or all of the above. Amber made deplorable comments about Jewish people, but most of us only found out about them because of the controversy that erupted outside of the normal CBS airings of the show. At the very least, I expected CBS to allow Amber to defend herself during the Early Show morning-after interview that Julie Chen usually conducts with evicted HouseGuests, but now they have blocked all interviews with Amber and the rest of the cast until after the finale airs. CBS could have taken the opportunity to show that any kind of bigotry, ...
Is it just me, or can you close your eyes and imagine these producers are 5,6 and 7 years old too? Danggit! At what point do we EVER get to leave our childhood issues in the past? And Im not removing myself from that statement. There are plenty of things I could point to in my own behavior that are left over from what I did or didnt get from my parents (especially my Dad) as a child. In intimate relationships, I am very needy and girlish
because I hate that in me, I check it whenever I recognize it by looking at the origins of it and reminding myself that I am now a grown woman and this man in front of me is NOT my Father and cannot be expected to fill in the blanks that he left. While I could go on and on about my baggage, the point here isnt a free psychotherapy session for me, but only to highlight the antics that are taking place in the interactions of these producers. They take everything waaaayyy too personally when it is not about them at all! T...
Aug 23, 2007 01:11 AM ET
- by m roush
This is the episode I had dreaded watching and reliving. When Ive followed reality-competition shows in the past (such as Project Runway and Top Chef, from the same Magical Elves production company as Americas Next Producer), I tend to hate it when everyone fails. I actually like to see the contestants produce impressive work, whether its fashion or food or even TV. The drama of failure can be memorable, but boy, is it painful to observe. And its even worse in person.The looks on our faces as we screen the late-night dating show Click (or as I retitled it: Ick!) arent made up for the camera. Its genuine horror and dismay at realizing how the team was unable to keep this project, and themselves, from crashing and burning. Despite what you may have heard about professional critics, we take no joy in watching bad TV, even if ripping it can give cathartic pleasure to author and reader alike. We want what we see to be good. I ce...