Anyway, I'm not sure if Donald Rumsfeld is a big fan of the show, or the Fox network in general, but if he is, after tonight's premiere, he likely won't be. (Somehow he seems like a solid History Channel man, the cable channel it's cool for politicians to say they actually watch.) Then again, he might have liked William Devane's secretary of defense yelling into his slacker son's face to "spare me your sixth-grade Michael Moore logic!"
A few other things of note:
It's ironic that on the night this show wins a People's Choice Award for Favorite New Drama, ABC airs what has to be DH's funniest episode yet. There are usually several clever quips, but I was laughing out loud at Susan's bitter rendition of "New York, New York" aimed at ex-husband Carl, who she had just found out was a serial groper. "I wanna be a part of it," she sang, "New York, New York! These vagabond shoes You're an ass, you know that? are longing to stray."
The Surreal Life
Quote of the Weekend:
"The woman doesn't mind being naked. I mean, it's obvious that she lives life naked, just punctuated by a few moments with clothes on." Chris Knight (Peter from The Brady Bunch), commenting on his new skinny-dipping housemate, Adrianne Curry, winner of America's Next Top Model's first season.
The "highlight" of tonight's episode began when rapper Da Brat decided to go sleep in the living room because she couldn't stand ex-wrestler Joanie "Chyna" Laurer's Chewbacca-like snoring (really, the least obnoxious thing she's done so far). On her way, she came upon a drunk Verne "Mini-Me" Troyer, who was in a "predicament," to say the least. She went into the guys' room to enlist their help. Off-camera we heard, "Chris? He's outside your door... naked in his [mobile] chair... pissing." The former Brady brother did help the little guy back to his room, but he was clearly, as he put it, "at a loss." I know the feeling.
National Geographic Explorer: The Perfect Swarm
To balance out my viewing of The Surreal Life, I thought it was only right to watch something educational. (Don't freak out, National Geographic I also found this special to be fascinating and entertaining as well.) The modern epidemic of locusts in Africa was juxtaposed with the devastation caused to our country by those same insects in 1875. From the cool CGI effects in the 19th-century re-creations, you can tell this has been in production for a while, but its similarities to the tragic tsunami disaster were eerily echoed by entomologist Jeff Lockwood when he said, "There's very little humans can do in the face of natural elements."
The 31st Annual People's Choice Awards
Basically, if you saw a celebrity in the audience, there was a damn good chance that he or she was going to win something. "Hey, there's Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, who just so happen to be nominated for Favorite On-screen Chemistry... And wow, they won!" "Mel Gibson looks really bored why'd he show up? But wait, his Passion of the Christ just took the coveted Favorite Movie Drama award. What a coincidence!" Yeah, anyway, the smoothest introduction of the evening had to have been when Jason Alexander said, "And now here's two crazy kids with a sparkle in their eyes and a movie to promote, the stars of The Wedding Date, Debra Messing and Dermot Mulroney." But the goofiest moment overall was certainly Will Smith and Mike Myers bear-hugging twice and then yelling "I love you!" "No, I love you!" "No, no. I love you!" to each other.
I watched the second-season premiere of this engrossing, Depression-era series with a buddy of mine who summed it this way: "Man, the '30s sucked." Oh yes, they certainly did. And what must've sucked even more was if you tried to watch this show without revisiting the finale that aired on HBO more than a year ago. Psychic/catatonic Apollonia has apparently gone up in flames (for actress Diane Salinger, either the sweetest or lamest acting job in all of television); Ruthie is alive while the Professor is indeed dead (and dumped); Brother Justin, who was caught checking out his sister's crotch, is now sending out subliminal messages over the radio (however, it's not "Check out my sister's crotch."); and it seems we actually know who Management is now.
Calling this reality show a guilty pleasure is like saying it's a guilty pleasure to stare at the bloody aftermath of a tragic car accident. Bill Long, a 73-year-old land developer, decided, for some insane reason, it was a good idea to gather his family and friends those with and without breast implants for a competition that technically hinges on his eventual death. The "winner" gets this kook's 560-acre Kansas ranch. Now, it appears this extended family is already screwed up enough (fourth wife Penny is horrid), so why would this guy, if he actually gives a damn about anyone here, put them through a situation that could fracture their relationships forever? People hold grudges over unintentional wedding slights for decades, never mind the quick-trigger backstabbing this show proudly displays. Hey Bill, nice legacy, buddy.
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson
When Ferguson, previously best known as Mr. "Carey, you're fired!" Wick, got the hosting gig last month, I bet he was as surprised as anyone. But five days after his premiere show, it's starting to make sense. You can tell he really wants to be there, and most importantly, he's an engaging conversationalist, including tonight's banter with Jeremy Piven. As far as the comedy bits go, while I liked him as an 8,000-year-old vampire who says "Anyhoo," I look forward to seeing Ferguson out of the studio, like he was during his tryout week in November when he auditioned for the new Elvis TV-movie. There'll be no five questions anymore, so I'll just ask one: Kilborn who? (OK, it's not like I suddenly have amnesia, I do remember him; I was just trying to make a point.)