January 2012

Huge 'X Factor' USA News: Everyone's Fired!

Well, almost: Three major departures

Fans of the X Factor USA are no doubt in shock, with news that not one, not two, but three major players on the show are out of a job. This includes poor Paula Abdul, who keeps catching (and losing) breaks. Also exiting are judge Nicole Scherzinger and host Steve Jones. Wow. That's definitely a house-cleaning.

What the heck is going on with this show?! Why did creator Simon Cowell decide to drop the hammer on nearly everyone?

Mob Wives Shocker: Karen Gravano's Filthy Mouth

"All in all, I have always been Team Drita, but never disliked Karen."

If you tuned into Mob Wives this past Sunday, then you know what the title is referring to.  I used to think Karen was a semi-nice person until this season.  She has been trying WAY too hard to prove that she is "hard".  In the most recent episode, she went for a sit-down with Carla, because she wants to get some issues off of her chest. 

As soon as Karen walked into this sit down with Carla, she got straight to the point by telling her that all summer, she "hated her f#$%ing guts".  Once that was said, you knew that the conversation would only go down hill.  The topic of their sit-down eventually turned to Drita, who Karen very clearly has some sick obsession with.  Karen tells Carla that she felt like she thought she was a joke at her and Drita's roof top showdown, in which she failed to pull Drita off of her.  Carla pretty much told her that she was uncomfortable and was unable to pull Drita off of her. The topic of Karen supposedly going to the hospital after the showdown also came up.  Carla said she told her that because she honestly heard that Karen went to the hospital for her ribs. Karen denies that and asserts that it never happened.  Although Karen relentlessly bashes Drita, Carla does, however, stay loyal to her friend the entire time.  Karen went as far as to say that Drita could do unthinkable acts to her in the middle of Macy's.  If you watched the episode, you know what was said. 

Are General Hospital and One Life to Live Consolidating?

Last week, the final episode of One Life to Live (OLTL) aired, leaving many soap fans distraught and wondering what is next for daytime TV? It is no secret that ABC is looking for a slot to put Katie Couric's new talk show in, so is General Hospital (GH) next to get the ax?  That, we do not know.  Not for now anyway. 

One Life to Live may have ended, but some characters are living on and moving to Port Charles.  Those said to be moving are Kassie DePaiva (Blair), Roger Howart (Todd), Kristen Alderson (Starr) and Michael Easton (John).  All of these Llanview citizens are set to bring their OLTL characters with them, so they will not be "new" characters.  According to Raven Beauty Soap Diva, there is a lot of tension on the set of GH due to this big move.  Not only is the cast reportedly being cut by 60%, which is sure to include big names, but other large egos are moving onto the set.   The cuts are apparently in order due budgetary restraints AND to make room for the new characters, who were leads on their previous show, and therefore are accustomed to larger paychecks.

Meet the New 'Bachelorette,' Emily Maynard

If the name sounds familiar, yes, she was Brad Womack's choice

If the name Emily Maynard sounds familiar, it should. She was the winner of last season's Bachelor. But after getting the final rose from bachelor Brad Womack, things fell apart for the two lovebirds. Now, Emily is returning for more reality TV heartbreak, drama and...well, drama. Maynard is the new Bachelorette!

ABC announced today that Emily Maynard will be the next Bachelorette who tries to weed through all the single guys in search of a forever mate. Or at the very least, someone she can date (in a very public way). For someone who seemed so shy in the spotlight during Season 15 of The Bachelor, Maynard sure jumped at the chance to do it all again, didn't she?

Did you Skip American Idol this week? So did many others

I tried to watch the American Idol debut this week, but it was just too corny.  Steve Tyler with his hats and weird costumes. Jennifer Lopez going through her mid-life crisis on national TV while wearing teenage clothing. Randy being unpalatable and irritating just by his presence. Been there, done that. There was nothing new to motivate my interest.

Except for the contestants...which were cookie-cutter. I kept turning away to inspect other channels and checking in periodically to see if anyone interesting was auditioning.

Apparently,  I wasn't alone. Ratings for American Idol dipped this season, pulling in roughly 18 million watchers, which, according to Entertainment Weekly was a 27 percent decline from this time last year.

Casting News for ABC's 'Revenge': Victoria Gets a Boyfriend

Madeleine Stowe says Victoria Grayson has a "passionate affair"

Well well well: It seems everyone's favorite evil horrible villainess, Victoria Grayson, is getting a boyfriend...or at least, a boy toy. So much for sitting around in the dark in that massive Hamptons beach mansion. Victoria's about to get seriously busy!

The newest cast member on ABC's addictive soap/drama Revenge is none other than gorgeous British actor James Purefoy. If the name doesn't ring a bell, you might remember him for playing Mark Antony on the HBO original series Rome. He was fantastic on Rome and I have no doubt he'll be amazing on Revenge.

Anybody else think the co-hosts of “The Insider” should have an affair?

Forget the celebrity stories. I scramble home to watch “The Insider” with Kevin Frazier and Brooke Anderson each day solely to see the rapport and banter between these two.

Brooke and Kevin have such dynamic chemistry that they always seem like they should be rolling around on the anchor desk in heat rather than sitting there inches apart telling us about the Kardashians or Miley Cyrus.

Alas, both Brooke and Kevin are married. Brooke, 33, has been married for 6 years, while Kevin, 47, has been married four years.  Still, is it so wrong to hope that they have an affair? ....And bring the cameras along to record it for viewers?

Mob Wives: Drita vs. Karen and Ramona

Season 2, Episode 2: Who Won?

Mob Wives was full of drama last week.  In the second episode of the season, we got to witness a huge fight go down.  It all started at Renee's party that she threw because she wanted to "celebrate life", since she nearly lost hers during plastic surgery gone wrong.  She wanted two of her closest friends, Karen and Drita present, who are not on good terms.  Did she really expect nothing to happen?

A Mom's Take on MTV's Teen Mom Phenomena

Teen Mom: Good or Bad?

I am a mother of 2, and I must say, I am a fan of the MTV shows, Teen Mom and Teen Mom 2.  I was never a teen mom, nor did I ever think that it was a good idea to be one, but I truly enjoy watching the girls on their journeys, learning something every step of the way.  I know that many groups say that these shows glamorize teen pregnancy and that the shows makes it "look easy", but I beg to differ. 

The shows portray the girls as they are.  I am sure there is much editing involved to play up certain scenarios, but I do not think that any of their situations appear to be easy.  They all have different challenges of varying magnitudes.  For example, Amber Portwood of the first season is dealing with financial issues, custody issues, mental issues and legal problems.  Her life is in no way glamorous.  On the extreme opposite, you have Chelsea Houska from the second season, who is spoiled by her doting father.  He gives her everything she needs to survive so that she can concentrate on being a mother to Aubree.  Her biggest issue is her volatile relationship with her baby's dad, Adam. I could write an entire blog on these two, so I will not go there, but their relationship troubles are larger than most. 

The Surprising Poignancy of Modern Family

Modern Family has become my absolute favorite show. Years ago, I would have waved it off, hating sitcoms and dismissing them as frivolous drivel. But you know what I’ve come to realize? Frivolous drivel is sort of important—at least in small doses. Laughter is so much more important to our lives than we give it credit for—not just for its health benefits, but for the way it makes us feel. So I don’t miss Modern Family for the sheer joy of it!

That said, I have been finding the show unexpectedly poignant lately. It’s welcome, for sure; it doesn’t detract from the show at all. But from the time that Jay cried over his mother’s holiday recipe to the time that Phil assured Claire that he did, indeed, take her advice to heart throughout his whole life—despite his dismissal of her wedge salad recommendation—it continues to pleasantly surprise me. The show isn’t just funny; it sneaks in meaning and togetherness and love when we least expect it, without weighting down the comedy.

The Best New Shows for Midyear

What are you watching?

Midyear television replacement shows aren’t usually as hyped as their fall season counterparts. Some simply aren’t good enough to pull in fall viewers for a network, while others have been moved from their original time slot because no one was watching them. All in all, it makes it difficult to find a show worth watching in January, the time of year during which you have nothing better to do than watch TV.

Never fear, here are some shows that will start in January that actually look good:

"Dance Moms"

A guilty Lifetime network pleasure.

I have been sucked into yet another show about crazy, neurotic mothers, kids, flashy costumes and competitions. At this point, I’ll have to admit that I seek out these kinds of shows, which include Toddlers & Tiaras, because they offer such an extreme departure from my everyday life. My newest obsession in this genre is Lifetime’s Dance Moms, which follows dancers and their mothers from the extremely successful, Pittsburgh-based dance company, the Abby Lee Dance Company.

Progresso Soup Commercial Fail

"Weigh" to sell your product!

Coughing up phlegm nonstop over the past week and a half has helped to ensure that I got my fill—perhaps a couple of month’s worth, actually—of television, and during this contemptuous viewing I’ve seen some really stupid commercials. Stupid isn’t bad enough to whine about, though; using tired old stereotypes about women to sell your product, however, is.