Saturday, January 13, 2007

The Class Goes Live

Now I gave up on the show around the time Everybody Hates Chris moved to Mondays, but I may have been a little too hard on The Class considering that it is by far the funniest new show about a chance reunion this season. Speaking of In Case of Emergency, I gave it a second chance and actually laughed less at the second episode. So for those keeping track at home, in two episodes, there has been a total of one laugh. But anyways. Back to The Class, the show is doing something really cool next week and here's a press release and some pictures courtesy of Warner Brothers and CBS:


Attention, fans! It’s time to go to class. “The Class,” that is. Warner Bros. Television and CBS Interactive invite viewers to experience, for the first time ever, a pair of live events that will provide a unique, behind-the-scenes look at the process of producing an original episode of a major network television series.

First Stop: The Table Read

Andrea AndersOn Monday, January 15 at 11:00 a.m. PT, fans can go to to watch a live webcast of the cast, producers and writers of “The Class” participating in a “table read” of an upcoming episode. The table read marks the first day of production on a half-hour multi-camera comedy, offering the actors their first opportunity to work on scenes together and giving the director, writers and producers instant feedback on how the episode is received by an audience. The table read is traditionally followed by rehearsal on Tuesday, leading to the first complete rehearsal performance of the episode on stage on Wednesday. And will be there, too.

The Run-Thru: Halfway There

The Class“On Wednesday, January 17 at 1:00 p.m. PT, fan can catch a second live webcast at to watch the run-thru. Traditionally, this full-episode rehearsal process takes place behind closed doors, but this exclusive event takes viewers directly inside the world of this fresh new comedy series—live and uncut.

The Class”—from comedy kings David Crane (“Friends”) & Jeffrey Klarik (“Mad About You”), along with veteran director/executive producer James Burrows (“Taxi,” “Cheers”)—follows a group of former third-grade classmates whose lives become inextricably bound together after they reunite 20 years later. The series stars Andrea Anders, Jon Bernthal, Lizzy Caplan, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Heather Goldenhersh, Sean Maguire and Jason Ritter, and it comes from craneklarik productions in association with Warner Bros. Television.

Don’t forget to watch “The Class” Mondays at 8:30 p.m. on the CBS Television Network.

Friday, January 12, 2007

First Impressions: The (White) Rapper Show

I’m not entirely sure who or what Ego Trip is, but they were behind what could have been the best or worst new show of the year. With a name like The (White) Rapper Show there really wasn’t going to be much between. Luckily for those that like to be entertained, it closer to the best side of things. The show takes ten rappers from all around the world of the Caucasian persuasion and has them battle it out to be the next big white hope.

MC Search out of obscurityNaturally the auditions are first as host MC Serch of 3rd Bass (who are for some reason missing from iTunes) with the help of producer Prince Paul try to narrow the group of a hundred to the ten that would make the show. With people like the old Jewish dude and the oversized chick who kept on rapping about her kootchiepop, that task didn’t seem all that hard and Serch made it seem. Well maybe it was condidering there were not ten white rappers worth picking from what I saw. Surprisingly one of the chicks had the gull to inform Serch that Vanilla Ice is her biggest influences considering he dedicated a whole song lampooning the future two time Surreal Lifer.

Persia and John Brown without the self pleasuring deviseEven big surprise was the same girl, G-Girl, ended up in the final ten and made it into Tha White House (yes that is what they are calling it and there are White Trash cans inside too) in the South Bronx. And looking at the other nine, she may just have a chance of winning. The stand out contestant, and not in a good way, is John Brown. For all you college students out there that still enjoy drinking games, here’s one that will get you messed up quick, take a drink every time Jon Brown mentions “King of the ‘Burbs” or “Ghetto Revival.” No word on why the King of the ‘Burbs would want to revive the ghetto or whether or not John Brown is a sheriff or not. And it doesn’t seem like his housemates like him that much as Persia stuck her, um how do I want to put this, her self pleasuring devise in dude’s face. And he also got into a war of words with Sullee. Now that’s surprising, a dude from Boston named Sullee and he likes to throw down after too many beers. They really are breaking down stereotypes on this show.

Misfit:  I'd hit thatOther contestants include include 100 Proof, the Kid Rock one of the group. Then there’s Ohio’s own Dasit although I have never once heard anyone call Toledo T-Town and I even lived with a wannabe rapper from Toledo. He’s also the first one to go so he better not ever bring that weak stuff to my homies in Yompton (Youngstown for those not in the know). Jon Boy may have the most unfortunate rap name of anyone that doesn’t have “Lil” in their name. Jus Rhyme, well I really don’t remember anything from him in the first episode. $hamrock can be best recognized as he’s the only one with those ridiculous grillz in his mouth. Rounding out the house is Misfit who hits the rap trifecta of wack being white, a chick, and British but she will uncertainly be kept around for awhile on account that she’s hot.

Verdict: All of the contestants are closer to Kevin Federline than Eminem but they are all so loony there’s bound to be a can’t miss moment every episode. And despite al the silliness there a sense of responsibility like when Persia drops why too many N-Bombs and is punished for it and they get a history lesson for Rock and Hall of Fame inductee Grandmaster Flash (surely the Flavor Flav guest spot is inevitable). And hey, at least it is more entertaining than just dudes singing karaoke.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

The Return of Big Head Barry and the Monsters

Big Head BarryI had my review of Ego Trip’s The (White) Rapper Show all ready to go but I had to put that on the back burner once again because my favorite oversized dome made it into the news again. It was reported today that Big Head Barry failed a drug test. Take that all you Bonds backers who said he never failed a drug test because he will forever have one on his resume. Well that and already admitting to using The Cream and The Clear in his grand jury testimony. Although it’s an odd time for this to be released considering that the season ended about four months ago but that is because he failed the test six months ago. As always Major League Baseball is on top of things. And taking a page out of George Bush’s playbook, the buck stops somewhere over there when Big Head Barry blamed the failed test on something he took out of former teammate Mike Sweeney’s locker. So we can add thief to liar and druggie. Well unless he lied about being a thief because guess who didn’t test positive for the drug that was stolen out of his locker: Mike Sweeney.

This wasn’t the best week for oversized domes as surely you all know by now that the original Big Head, Mark McGwire was rejected in his first try into the Baseball Hall of Fame garnishing on 23.5 percent of the 75 percent needed to get in. I never understood the argument for McGwire getting in because even if you took away the cloud of steroids out of the equation he was a mediocre at best player who just had about three great years which were based mostly on the number of home runs he hit. He couldn’t much else and was at times a liability on the field. Other oversized domes didn’t fair as well as McGwire as former Surreal Lifer Jose Canseco only got 1.1 percent of the votes while the first steroid admitter, the late Ken Caminiti received just two votes. Also not receiving enough votes to stay on the ballot for next year (you need at least 5 percent of the vote) was Joey Bell at 3.5 who I’m surprised has avoided all the steroids talk as he is a known cheater who sent a bat boy through the air ducts to steal his corked bats from the umpires.

Remember the Spice GirlsIn non baseball news, THE BRITISH ARE COMING! THE BRITISH ARE COMING! Okay it’s not the Redcoats, it just David Beckham who signed on to play with the Los Angeles Galaxy. This is notable for two reasons, one I find this quote by Becks funny, “I've played now for two of the biggest clubs in the world and played at the highest level for 15 years, and now I think that I need another challenge.” What challenge is that, a less superior league? How is that a challenge? The second is that he will presumably bring along his wife best now on this side of the pond as Posh Spice, whom not only I once met, I also royally irritated her in our meeting. Fun times.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

I'd Rather Spend Eternity Eating Shards of Broken Glass

A quick programming note: The Knights of Prosperity, or as I like to call it Let’s Rob Mick Jagger will be on tonight following the Presidential Address at 9:25 so set your alarm clock, VCR, or if your cool enough, your Tivo. If you end up missing it, you can always check it out at And don’t forget to check out my contest on how to win a Knights of Prosperity T-Shirt.

But today I don’t want to talk about entertaining shows like Let’s Rob Mick Jagger or Ego Trip’s The (White) Rapper Show which I’ll be talking about tomorrow. Earlier this week I summed up In Case of Emergency as the least funny show since Four Kings. But there are some shows debuting this year that are so bad that there is no way you can get me to watch them. Topping that list is the Jennifer Lopez driven Dance Life. Just when I think the J-Lo era is finally over they give her and her uber-lame husband their own reality show. Thanks MTV, this better not lead to another crappy album from her.

Next up on the now way I’m ever watching list: Gay, Straight or Taken. What’s worse is this is on Lifetime. So this is what woman do for entertainment? Not only that, wasn’t this a Fox reality show called Playing it Straight at one point? Speaking of ripping off other show, there is I Love New York. What brain trust thought this was a good idea? Didn’t these people learned form The Bachelorette which killed off The Bachelor franchise? Not to mention Flavor Flav is a star, New York, not so much.

Which leads me to tonight’s premiere of another show you won’t ever catch me watching: Armed and Famous. Yeah, why not in the middle of the War on Terror deputize a bunch of publicity seekers who will only mock the profession of protecting us? I have a sinking suspicion that this was the very reality show Jordan McDeere passed on for NBS. But surpisingly it wasn’t picked up by Fox, nope this stinker will air on CBS. And the cast makes the Surreal Life Fame Gamers look like actual A-Listers: Erik Estrada looks like he is trying to beat his Surreal cast mate Trishelle for shaming themselves for the most reality show, LaToya Jackson is a sixth rate Jackson after Michael, Janet, Joe, Tito and Germaine, Jack Osbourne is also the least interesting in his family, Jason Acuna known to drunken frat boys everywhere as Wee Man, and Trish Stratus who left wrestling for this trash. Oh and I have pictures courtesy of CBS:

Want more, head over to Ficken Chingers where Angie has amateur pictures of Wee Man and Jack as she lives in Muncie, Indiana where the show was film. Somehow she didn't get any camera time herself even though I know she watched My Name Is Earl this past week and should have had plenty of suggestions on how to get on a reality cop show. But anyways. For those interested in the show, and I can’t imagine anyone outside of Muncie would, the show airs tonight at 8:00. Me, I'll be watching quality programming like Friday Night Lights and Beauty and the Geek at that hour. Oh and don’t forget Let's Rob Mick Jagger after Bush’s speech. Oh and for those that din't catch it, the title for this post is from a Weird Al song.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

First Impressions: The Surreal Life Fame Games

Surreal Life Fame GamesWe all have our reality guilty pleasures; some enjoy watching dudes singing karaoke while others enjoy watching rich kids talk about how hot they are. Some people somehow find enjoyment on watching people sitting around a house and do nothing 24/7. Me, my reality bane is watching has been celebrities humiliate themselves in the hopes that they may become relevant again. And no show has been better at humiliating celebrities than the six seasons of The Surreal Life that takes singers and actors from our formative years and sticks them in a house with reality stars and other people that are less famous. Now much like the show it ripped off, The Real World, The Surreal Life is bringing back some of it’s former contestants for The Surreal Life Fame Games.

The cast of the Surreal Life Fame Games at their first gameAs seen with the “game” played in the first episode, the show is about how much fame one has or what they will do to hang onto it. In the inaugural game, the ten Surreal Lifers had to be picked by a group of thirty random people to get a picture taken with. Who had Vanilla Ice getting the most photos? But anyways. Then the bottom three with the least amount of pictures would then have a mini game where the two losers would be banished to the “B-List” which, let’s face it, would be an upgrade for pretty much everyone in the cast. But they let the non-losers pretend they are still on the “A-List” in the lavish part of the house where the “B-List” part looked more like a low rent motel.

Mini-Me as da plane dudeIronically the biggest fame seekers, the token reality star, none of them were selected for these games. Instead the contestants were primarily made up of the token actor from the eighties and the token rocker or rapper. From season one we get Emmanuel Lewis (Webster). From the second season there is Vanilla Ice (Ice, Ice Baby), Traci Bingham (Baywatch), and Ron Jeremy (porn). After Jordon Knight (NKOTB) dropped out for personal reasons Brigitte Nielsen (Red Sonja) is the lone representative from season three. Chyna Doll (wrestler) and Verne Troyer (Mini-Me), who replaced Knight, are from season four. Pepa (Push It) is the only one who survived the infamous season five. Then C.C. DeVille (Poison) and Andrea Lowell (Playboy TV) are from the latest season.

Wait, no Flavor Flav? How can VH1 do a reality show without Flavor Flav?

Back to the game, I’m really not sure what the rules of the game are. Supposedly someone gets kicked off the show until there is only one celeb left. But all that happened was two contestants, Chyna and Mini-Me, were banished to the B-List but weren’t eliminated, or so I took from it. And instead of all the other celebrity editions game show, the person the wins gets to keep the money, and is not playing for charity which is something cheap. Couldn’t they have at least gone halfsies?

Verdict: Complete and utter trash. And I’ll be watching every week despite the disturbing Brigitte and Chyna hookup in the first episode. Go Webster! The Surreal Life Fame Games airs Sundays at 9:00 on VH1 and will most likely be repeated contantly throughout the week and will probably have twenty marathons before Groundhog’s Day.

Monday, January 08, 2007

First Impressions: I'm From Rolling Stone

After Let’s Rob Mick Jagger, my second most anticipated new show of the year was I’m From Rolling Stone. I got my very first Rolling Stone way back in 1993 with the iconic Cindy Crawford cover with her holding her boobs sparking a trend that still goes on today. Needless to say, with that as my first issue, I’m still a loyal subscriber to this day. And that is why I was so excited for the premiere of this reality show as it follows six interns with one getting a contributing editor job at the end of the summer. Yes summer, as in last summer, and there is one of the cons to this show in that it can’t be to hard to find out who won.

Although another is that after one episode, I really don’t care to do the easy research to find out who won as most of the interns are not all that interesting. The only two that stand out, and not by much are Peter Maiden, the resident drunk (hey, this is still a reality show on MTV), and the rebel without a clue Russell Moore who was so brazen when Jann Wenner called to tell him he got the internship Moore said he didn’t want it afterwards only to say he was just kidding. Of course that was better than Krishtine de Leon who butchered Wenner’s name. How do you apply for a job for the most well known music magazine in the world and not know the Founder, Publisher and Editor of the magazine? Maybe it’s me, but I make it a point note to know any potential bosses name.

Rounding out the contestants is Krystal Simpson, the bright-eyed one with the least amount of world experience. Colin Stutz is your token modern day hipster who wasn’t that memorable from the first episode. And if I were to make a preseason pick on who gets the contributor job I would put my money on Tika Milan who seems the most dedicated of the bunch. The first episode was basically just them getting the call as well as getting their first assignment which was then critiqued by Executive Editor Joel Levy.

Verdict: The first episode was a snore fest but hopefully now that the introductions are over with things will start to pick up. I’m From Rolling Stone airs Sundays at 10:00 on MTV.

In other music news, the latest crop of inductions into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame were announced today with R.E.M., Van Halen, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, Patti Smith, and The Ronettes all entering the Hall on March 12. Interesting to see which, if any, former Van Halen front men will show up and/or perform. Not to mention it wasn’t too long ago when Eddie Van Halen announced that he replaced original bassist Michael Anthony with his son Wolfgang. I’m sure to have a full recap of the festivities whenever it airs on VH1.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Don't Download These Videos vol. VIII

There have been a couple of videos that have caught my eye lately so I though I’d give them some love since the death of Musical Television left a void for a forum on the art form so here they are courtesy of YouTube (but no (Expletive Deleted) in a Box; when it first aired on SNL it was funny, when you’re the 1000th blog to feature it, not so much). I advise you to watch them before you read my reviews if you don’t want me to spoil things. If you are interested in buying the video through iTunes, click the title link (where available, if not the link goes to YouTube where you can watch the video in full screen). If you are interested in buying the song, look for a link in the analysis.

Windows in the Skies - U2

Okay, I’m a big history guy so whenever you get a video like this I’m watching it over and over again. It hard to quibble with the selections (okay, maybe a little: no Springsteen, Prince, or Beastie Boys). This video just missed the cut off for The Best Videos of 2006 list but it’s already the video to beat for 2007’s list. Now this is where I link the video in iTunes but there is only one problem, you can’t buy the song. Yeah you can get it if you buy the U218 Singles greatest hit package, but the problem is, I already own all the other songs on the album. And record companies wonder why people still resort to staling songs.

How to Save a Life (Mark Pellington Version) - The Fray

Surely everyone has seen what boils down to as a commercial for the cheesy nighttime General Hospital show, but this version is a much better fit for the song (rumor has it the lead singer of The Fray wrote this song after having a talk with a depressed kid who then went home committed suicide one day) and so transplanting hacks with actually people is a vast upgrade.

Memories - Eisley

This video seemed to escape me when it was originally released a couple months ago even though Eisley is one of my favorite bands in recent years with their album Room Noises, which happens to be the first album I ever reviewed on this site (see: You Humor Me Today) and landed at number four on my Best Albums of 2005 list. Some cool effect throughout the video. The band is currently working on a follow up that should be out this year so look out for that and surely it will be reviewed here whenever it is released.

Just a quick story, when I listen to iTunes I usually have it on shuffle which occasionally pops up some great songs that I haven’t heard in a while. Yesterday it shuffled on Santana featuring Musiq with Nothing at All and I forgot how much I loved the song. In fact if I were to ever try out for some lame karaoke show, this would be my audition song. Well either that or When Doves Cry because you haven’t lived until you have heard my drunken rendition of When Doves Cry.

One last thing I forgot to mention during my TV post was that Showtime send me some promo stuff for The L Word which fourth season starts tonight. Unfortunately they didn't let me check out the first episode like they did for Dexter but they did point me in the way of this not all that safe for work video: The Most Awesome Make-Out Montage and it definately lives up to its title. And if you order Showtime now and you can get an exclusive designer top from The L Word collection (retail value $179). Keep in mind this is more of an offer for chicks, but check out that offer here.