Posts filed under 'Reality'

Ukraine’s Got Talent: We’re more than just gymnasts

Via Friend of the Faux John, here’s the winner of Ukraine’s Got Talent — a 24-year-old named Kseniya Simonova. As you’ll see, Kseniya does what is essentially performance art by drawing with sand on an overhead projector.

This is actually really incredible and does what I think this series should always strive for — to make you think “I’ll never be as good at anything as she is with this.”

2 comments August 27th, 2009

The City: Behind Olivia Palermo’s dead eyes

You guys! There’s this new thing I’m really going to enjoy hating!

Their hair is just so shiny.

2 comments December 30th, 2008

Who’s the worst?

These guys.

In brief:

Neil Patrick Harris was robbed.

Turns out Josh Groban has a sense of humor (ETA: get it while it’s still out there).

I still don’t care about Mad Men.

Tina Fey deserves it all.

I open the floor to comments. Particularly insults directed at the idiots pictured above.

3 comments September 22nd, 2008

Top Design: Out with the old

As a concept, Top Design was probably the most obvious next step for a Bravo reality competition show following the success of Project Runway and Top Chef. It is the next most obvious homo-oriented profession (unless they were going to do Top Junior High Show Choir Director or Top Beauty Pageant Coach. So, it was kind of a big surprise when the first season of the show was panned across the board (let it be known, however, that I still found it enjoyable — although my taste is questionable in these circumstances).

For the second season of Top Design, though, they’ve spiced things up. Fortunately, they’ve even followed some of my advice. Because, they asked me, you know.

The differences?

  • They got a new host. Todd Oldham, bless his heart, has ample knowledge and zero personality. As such, they’ve demoted him to become the show’s Tim Gunn where he can just offer helpful hints and dote upon the contestants. The new host is India Hicks — who I have never heard of in my life, but the show assures me is very, very important. She is, for sure, blonde, foreign and as sharp and cold as a pick axe.
  • They’ve ditched the stunningly awful catchphrase, most likely inspired by a dare, “See you later, decorater.” Instead, they’ve opted for the clumsy, if passable, “We can’t live with your design.” It’s no “you’re out,” but whatever.
  • They’ve changed the scenery in the judges room from the standard gaytemporary style to a darker, more industrial-looking space. It works.
  • No preliminary Quickfire-esque challenges. Instead, they’ve instituted pop quiz-style competitions.

Unfortunately, all the judges are the same (although I love that crazy dame Kelly Wearstler). Mean girl Jonathan Adler and that other lady are still there, but haven’t really been that offensive so far.

In general, the show has a bit more meat — a focus on competition and a more interesting cast. So far, the most interesting folks are Andrea (Ricky Schroeder’s real-life wife and stern taskmaster), Wissit (an opera-singing gay cartoon), Preston (who treated us to a long shot of his torso) and Robert (an older gay robot who balls-ily and spectacularly threw Preston under the bus in the first episode).

I’ll let you know how it goes.

September 8th, 2008

The Mole season finale: Craig is the mole

Tonight marks the end of The Mole. Billed as the season finale, it’ll most likely be the series finale unless the foolhardy execs at ABC try to give the show another go with a retooled marketing concept.

There are three finalists left for the finale — one of whom will be the winner, one of whom will be the mole and one of whom is shit out of luck.

Weepy, but not the mole. Crazy, but not the mole. Docile, and the mole.

For the record, I’ll be a rat’s ass if Craig isn’t the mole. His behavior hasn’t proven to me that he is the guilty party, but the other two have successfully proven that they aren’t.

If Nicole is the mole, she’s probably the best mole in the history of moles. She would have had to have made a conscious decision to be combative and pick fights with her fellow contestants — which is a really aggressive strategy for taking on a role where people generally stay somewhat under the radar. That said, I think it’s much more likely that she is just kind of crazy and abrasive — not a genius of deception.

Mark, on the other hand, is too much of a softie. The interviews he’s given where he’s welling up at the prospect of allowing his wife to quit her job because of the money he’ll make seem to genuine. Again, unless he’s a brilliant actor (doubtful) he’s probably just a nice dad who wants to win money.

If he is indeed the mole (and, again, I can’t imagine he’s not), Craig is an interesting choice. Historically, moles have usually been hot babes that the players underestimate (Katherine on the first mole and two supermodels on the celebrity editions). Craig would be underestimate-able, but not because he’s a hot babe. He’s basically just a funny, jolly, comic book-y graphic designer whose failings in missions are easily forgiveable because of his size and the fact that no one can get angry with him.

We’ll see how it all shakes out tonight, though. I’m historically awful and trying to figure this stuff out, so watch it all fall apart in front of my eyes.

1 comment August 11th, 2008

Design Star finale: Vote for the winner

Aside from my unrequited love letter to co-finalist Matt Locke, I haven’t really talked about this season of Design Star. Suffice to say, it’s been enjoyable enough to keep me coming back week after week. However, that may just be because of aforementioned beefcake.

The series is down to two finalists: Matt and the bubbly bottle blond Jennifer. Jennifer is an immensely likable gal who likes to paint leaves on walls. Her whole backstory is that she auditioned with her husband, also a designer, but only she made it. She is friendly and cute but, of course, I cannot support her instead of you-know-who.

Last night’s penultimate episode featured the two designers designing homes for New Orleans families whose homes are still devastated by Katrina. They received the help of a crew of carpenters as well as eliminated contestants Trish and porn Mikey. Both families received their new homes with reactions of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition proportions.

If you’re so inclined, you can vote for the winner here. Last year’s choice was pretty clear — there was pleasant and easygoing Kim versus loud, shirtless surfer Todd. This year — it’s anybody’s guess.

July 28th, 2008

An open letter to HGTV’s Design Star contestant Matt Locke

Dear Matt from HGTV’s Design Star,

Please, for both our sakes, stop calling me.

If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a thousand times — these things never work out. You’re a star of the modest HGTV reality show Design Star; I’m the scribe of a moderately-known, occasionally-read blog about television. We’re just from different worlds. Bloggers and reality folk are natural enemies — like cats and dogs, cops and robbers, fire and water, ninjas and robots.

Listen, I know all about you. How you’re a Colorado-born artist-cum-designer with a smile as broad as your dome is bald. How you’re the nice guy amongst a cabal of interior designers who can be both catty and vicious. But our innate animal attraction doesn’t mean we can disrupt the natural order — bloggers and reality folks are the Capulets and Montagues of the twenty-first century. Believe me, if we keep heading down this road you’re going to be poisoned, I’m going to have a dagger in my chest and someone’s going to have to dig up Vondie Curtis-Hall to eulogize us.

No one needs that, Matt. No amount of adorable eye-twinkles will change the facts.

Furthermore, it doesn’t help matters when you call me, three sheets to the wind on whiskey sours, talking about the house you can design for us in the Rockies. About how we can decorate the home ourselves and then raise alpacas on our expanse of land. Or maybe make and bottle our own line of jams and jellies.

And, yes, I’m sure that after you win the current season of Design Star you’ll be able to have enough basic cable clout to get us guest spots on Barefoot Contessa. You keep saying how you can build good old Ina a new kitchen table while I keep her company as she methodically purees vegetables for our gazpacho.

By the way, I hope I didn’t lead you on that time you caught a look at my laptop and the desktop was tiled with your headshot. I mean, I knew you were going to look at it. I was just playing a joke.

I just hope we’re on the same page because I don’t want anyone’s feelings to get hurt. Okay?



PS – I love you.

July 17th, 2008

I’m waiting for the person who just admits they went on reality TV to make friends

Every time I think I’ve become a genuine fanatic about something, there’s always someone who can outdo me.  I guess it’s the nature of the internet where the most fervent, psychotic devotees will shout the loudest and get heard.

What I’m leading up to is that even though I am a self-professed sucker reality TV, there are many people out there who have the fever way worse than I do. Case in point, the people who compiled this (pretty amazing) video.

It’s a total cliche for reality TV participants to say, when called on their bullshit, that they’re “not here to make friends.” If they are really up a creek, they’ll throw in the “I came here to win.” And now, the good folks at Four Four have driven home just how big of a cliche it is.

Watch in disbelief.[kml_flashembed movie="" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

1 comment July 8th, 2008

30 Days: Maybe tonight’s a good time to start

Among the shows I feel like I could watch (if only the network it aired on — FX — was in any part of my consciousness) is Morgan Spurlock’s 30 Days.

Spurlock is the guy who nearly killed himself by eating McDonald’s every day in “Super Size Me” and is known for both his gregarious personality and unfortunate choices in facial hair. He’s pretty charming, though, and the concept behind 30 Days is pretty cool.

Essentially, it’s a classy version of Wife Swap — without the wives. A person who is very ingrained in one lifestyle experiences 30 Days living in a completely foreign and challenging environment. So far this season, participants have included a former football player who must spend a month in a wheelchair, a hunter who has to work for PETA and Spurlock himself who goes to work in a coal mine.

The episode that airs tonight is intriguing to me for the obvious gay angle. A homophobe goes to live with a pair of gay dads.

To give you an idea of what it’ll turn out like, here’s a quote from one of the dads taken from an Advocate article:

I think Kati was truly hurt when I told her I couldn’t be her friend. But she told us she was going back to California to work against gay marriage. Ultimately, it’s not a “live and let live” or “agree to disagree” situation. We’re not passing judgment on how she lives her life, but her views and actions threaten the existence our family. Michigan just had a marriage amendment updated by the courts that eradicated domestic-partner health care benefits for state employees. Now Tom’s not covered by my health insurance.

The episode airs on FX at ten p.m.

June 24th, 2008

Summer programming: How much is too little

Desperate times call for desperate television choices. As such, here’s a preview for Shear Genius — Project Runway for hairstylists. It debuts June 25.

It should be noted that, in all likelihood, this will be entirely watchable. The question is — do we really want to make this kind of investment?

Maggie noted (way back when) how these fifth generation Project Runway clones are like the clones in the Michael Keaton farce Multiplicity. By the fifth time he copies himself, the clones are functionally useless and stupid — wearing pots on their heads and such.

However, sometimes I wonder if there were other variations of Runway that failed before that show debuted. Now, in the event of Runway’s success, those failed shows are being trotted out even though they never quite worked. It’s like that fourth Alien sequel — the one with Winona Ryder as the spunky pixie robot — where Sigourney Weaver finds all of the failed clones of Ripley before the one that actually worked. They were all mutated and preserved in brine — some of them were just clumps of teeth and hair.

Shear Genius is probably somewhere between a clump of teeth and hair and Sloth from The Goonies. If you follow my drift.

June 20th, 2008

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