Bachelorette Recap: Week 5

12 06 2012

Bachelorette fans were waiting for drama this season.

It happened, in week 5.

We will get to it… but first lets talk about the events in week 5.

The next stop featured on the Bachelorette Tourism Network… London. Oh look! A famous London landmark. And another…

The guys gather at Trafulgar Square to receive their instructions for this week of dates. As usual, 2 one on one dates and a group date (they should be getting the hang of it by now…)

The first one on one date goes to Sean, the hunky soft spoken man of God. Producer forgot to plan the first part of their date, they were walking around a random park, talking to buskers…or something. Then they had a private dinner in the Tower of London, where Emily tried desperately to remember the script she wrote about the history of the place, and Sean pretended to be impressed. How many times do you think they had to shoot that ‘scene’? Didn’t seem to matter, these two have a good conversation and an easy connection. They share a smooch overlooking London night lights… very romantic; he gets the Rose and becomes a frontrunner in my opinion. This is the kind of guy she was looking for in Brad. Someone with heart, with passion, with integrity … unfortunately she got a bit of a rotten apple when his ‘passion’ turned into intensity. Different animal altogether…

The group date was another ‘acting challenge’ for the guys. I should be keeping count. How many dates have the guys been forced to ‘perform’ or put on costumes? Since  I doubt Emily has any input on the dates, the producers are clearly having a creative block.

The guys recited Shakespeare and Ryan got his first kiss with Emily while she was acting the role of Juliette’s corpse… oh, how romantic. Ari came out of his ‘comfort zone’ by playing the nurse complete with wig, dress and tights. There’s nothing more attractive…

The only one who looked like they were actually enjoying being in Shakespeares hometown, re-enacting one of his scripts to woo a fair lady, was Travis. I hope we’ll see a little bit more of him, he has yet to be ‘featured’, but he is certainly fun.

In the after party, it was Kalon’s spotlight. Apparently a few guys heard him have a conversation about Emily’s daughter being ‘baggage’ for whoever wins this show. Yikes. Ouch. That’s just…vile. There is nothing that awakens the protector gene in a mother more than insulting her child. It’s like throwing rocks at baby geese- you’re only safe until their mother turns around… then you better run.

Once this was brought to Emily’s attention, it didn’t take long for her to address it, like a mother goose. She attacked the subject head on – brought the guys into the room, called out Kalon and gave him one question to answer. ’Did you say this?’ his answer, was of course, ‘yes, but….’ No explanation needed. ‘Get the F… out’. Perfectly executed , Mother Goose.

The next one on one date was given to Jef. (I keep having to tell spellcheck that’s not a typo) I was looking forward to seeing this. Jef is confusing me. The skinny jeans, the side bouffant, the boyish shyness… is this really Emily’s man? She says she’s really into him. I don’t see it. And even though they had some good conversation, and he got his first smooch of the season… I’m still not convinced of this pairing.

At the Rose ceremony, not much to report. The drama went down in the pub at the group date. Ari was scolded for not telling her about Kalon earlier. But he’s a safe bet every week… so in the end, Alessandro was sent home.

Thoughts…?





Bachelorette Recap: Week 3

29 05 2012

I am thoroughly and shamlessly enjoying this season of the Bachelorette.

I havent fallen in love with any of the handsome suitors yet, but I have fallen in love with the new touches and navigation of the show Emily seems to have input on.

For example, I love the fact that she had her real-life friends (who should have their own sitcom…seriously!) question the guys and stand around and gossip about them playing with children at the park. I also love the fact that she is taking men on dates to places SHE where she has a connection and memories.  Lastly, I love that she seems to be very confident in her search, and isnt taking any ‘fluff or guff’ from men she doesnt see a fit with…. she’ll just send you packing (heck, she sent 3 home this week!). Atta girl! In fact, I get the feeling if she had it ALL her way, she could pick out the top 5 contenders, and call a limo for the others right now. They’re just a distraction.

Let’s get to last night…

The first one on one date was with Chris – or the child of Gerard Butler and Tim Tebow… c’mon, you see it too! Of course, they climb a building in a thunderstorm. Good thing Chris is such a good man, he was right beside her the whole time (let’s be realistic, he was strapped in right beside her, and I dont know any guy who would just bolt up the building and look back…he’s no hero.) Chris had the motive – he told the camera about half a dozen times that he was going in for a kiss. He got his opportunity after dinner, when the two went country dancin’ in the moonlight. There was some smooching. And a Rose was offered and accepted.

The group date… was just awesome TV. Emilys friends grilled the guys on their preparedness for Fatherhood, their reasons for being here, their previous relationships… and even made them do tricks. If this was a date on The Bachelor… it would be disturbingly masochistic. But men forced to do push ups…. I dont have an issue. Y’all spend hous in the gym so that when the time is right, you can press to impress.

A little bit corny to bring out a busload of children to test the playfullness of the guys. One guy who was not into it, was Ken Doll Ryane Juicehead came over to try and banter with the gaggle of girls and fell flat with some lame flirting tactics. The worst was his declaration (in jest?) that if his woman ‘got fat’ he would still ‘love them but not love ON them’. Classy.

Some guys made a good impression: Sean the Blonde, Doug the Dad…

That evening, Emily gave the Rose to Sean (a guy I hadnt noticed until last night, and who now I consider a frontrunner). Also Tony breaks down over missing his son. He calls him a bunch of times to ma sure he’s still a ‘good father’. Emily sits him down and gracefully extends him the offer to leave because she wouldnt want to take him away from his son jsut to let him go further down the road. She is so poised , this wouldve been an awkward crying, hurtful mess if anyone else was the lead. She comes from a place of honesty, and I think that is essential during this highly emotional process.

The next one on one was with Arie in Dollywood. As usual, they had the complete run of the park grounds – they were the only people there. How much fun can that possibly be? Then Emily leads Arie into the Dolly Parton theatre to write a song… and guess what happened next? Well, land a goshen, spit n’ the ocean… Dolly Parton, the legendary blonde hourglass was there to greet them. Emily tried to pull off gobsmacked… but even Dolly saw through it. ‘You’re surprised? To see Dolly at Dollyland?” Burn! But Emily was genuinely smitten with the whole experience – I dont think it mattered one rednecked dollar who was with her… it was all about her and Dolly.

Arie was there too, and they shared a ride on the carousel before ending the date. There was some smooching, Emily gushed about the kind of man he was, and all of a sudden… Arie is a frontrunner.

At the Rose ceremony, guys continued to put their foot in their mouths. Allessandro told Emily that Ricki was a comprimise for him. Ouch! And Kalon gave Emily the old ‘sit n’ look pretty and let the men do the talking’. Brutal! Emily gave Allessandro the number for a cab, and walked him out. She’s certainly doing alot of her own ‘weeding’ this season.

Emily gave Roses to everyone but Stevie… but the total carnage was 3 last night: Tony, Allessandro and Stevie.

THoughts?

 





DWTS: Motown Night Week 6

24 04 2012

Last night’s week 6 of DWTS featured Motown  and the Dance Marathon.

You know the producers were scrambling. The task was to find Motown acts, still alive, still living in LA, and willing to come out of retirement to sing on a reality show of D List dancers. The set is impressive, the viewership massive… so the appeal is there (and the paycheque). But the BIG problem still remains… how do you FILL a show with live Motown performances from the original artists? You call Smokey Robinsons agent, you call The Temptations and you scratch your head for awhile, then call Martha Reeve. What happens next? Smokey Robinsons agent finds him at Tussauds Wax Museum, The Temptations work on a few moves, and Martha Reeve gets a doctors note to attend.

Sorry, but it’s hard to watch a man’s face so tightly strung that his eyebrows, eyelids and cheek muscles don’t move while he sings. It’s just as hard to watch The Temptations attempt choreography they havent rehearsed, or Martha Reeve scream and convulse her way through old hits.

The music was perfectly suited to the dancing. I like that DWTS has decided to adopt the ‘Theme’ format that all other competition shows seem to have perfected. Motown was a far better theme than KISS headlining Rock Week. I just have to think that sitting around the production table wouldve been a struggle… because Gladys Knight (arguably the move well known and well… preserved of all the MOtowners) was unavailable.

Begs the question – SHOULD she have been eliminated last week, WOULD she have been one of the headliners?

Hmmmm…

either way, Glaydis Knight was GOING to be a part of Motwon week – the conspiracy theorist on my left shoulder tells me they kept her around JUST to dance in week 6, Motown week.

So they started off the night, with Knight. Gladys is a pleasure to watch, her facial expressions and performance quality are so endearing. It was definitely cool to see her dance to the music she helped create and make ‘classic’. The judges were cordial, but we all know that Gladys’ days on this show are numbered with the standard of dance that is required to win.

Next, Maria Menonous shares Karina’s wardrobe, and foxtrotted herself into a top finish…again. She had a minor mistep, and did not perform very well during the Dance Marathon, adding only 4 bonus marks to her total.

Roshon Fagan tried to pretend that he hasnt JUST hit puberty with a ‘sexy’ dance to Smokey Robinsons Cruisin’. The judges hit the nail on the head – his movement are far to ‘herky jerky’, like he’s trying to pop hip hop moves into a foxtrot… and it comes across as jarring and overdanced.

Katherine, the Welsh Wiggler, was spot on again this week. She wiggled and shook ‘her bits’ to a rousing, crowd and judge pleaser . It can be difficult to have a partner like Mark Ballas who will dance circled around you effotlessly – but in this case, katherine is rising to the challenge and matching him step for step. The pair also won the dance Marathin, catapaulting them into a sound first place.

Donald Driver came out with his best dance of the season, receiving his best scores to boot. I had become a bit bored of Donals, he wasnt bringing anything unique or different to the dance floor , but he could be a contender if he continues to perform the way he did last night.

Melissa Gilbert (needs to look at Smokey Robinson and make some life changes…faces are meant to move) Her dancing tends to err on the side of awkward and wooden. This was a better effort, and she received some very high praise (yet mediocre marks) from the judges. I like her better in the smooth dances where she can show control… she runs off the rails very quickly in fast step dances.

Jaleel (Urkel) is quickly becoming one of my favourites. He had a bounce back week, performing the SOCKS off his cha-cha adding boatloads of personality. He also had a new easy quality that made the dance look effortless. Great scores, great dance, great week for Urkel.

William Levy relies heavily on his oozing Sex appeal. The ‘sexy dances’ are right up his alley, and he sizzled through another one last night. It’s going to keep him around for a long time, but I hope that he gets a chance to show off some high octane dancing in the future too!

Thoughts?

Did the Dance Marathon help you decide who the best dancers in this competition are? I read pretty deep into the judges picks and placement – Gladys went first, Katherine went last. Does this predict the order of elimination?





DWTS Season 14: Top 11

3 04 2012

It was Lights, Camera, Waterworks in an emotional DWTS Week 3.

It didnt HAVE to be emotional – the theme was ‘Most Memorable Year’ – but of course it WAS emotional because obviously, the best sotry wins the night … am I right? You know I am.

This night always exposes parts of the ‘storyline’ the Stars want you to follow. For example, Sherry Shepherd is the dutiful, beaming proud mother. Her story was probably one of the most heartfelt of the night, talking about her baby being born with serious health complications. We heard about Melissa Gilberts ‘back problems’. We heard about Urkels struggle to break form his Urkel character (what a first world problem…) We heard about Maria’s hardworking parents and her obsession with Madonna that gave her ‘the dream’. We heard about Gavins ever-loving parents who have supported him even when NO ONE else did.

etc…

If you were asked what your most memorable year was… would you come up with a sob story, or a happy story? I feel like I might NOT choose the death of a family member as the quintessential moment in my existence. But then, I’m not campaigning for votes…

Let’s talk about the dancing!

Jack Wagner – had a daughter he didnt know about, and now he cant even say her name without whimpering. He’s dancing for her. To HIS song. Shameless. I still dont know who this guy is, but his dancing is nothing to write home about.

Maria – apparently has broken ribs, but continues to do wrestlemania and practice 8 hours a day. Maybe its the tenacity she got from her immigrant parents who made her sweep floors with them on weekends. Although, she wouldnt have been much help is she was watching Madonna videos and daydeaming. Either way, she and Derek danced a pretty steamy Rhumba worthy of her high scores.

Gavin – has hustler parents who used to go door to door to land him gigs? Wow. Gavin is exactly the kind of person I watch this show to see. A ‘name’ that has NO dancing experience, and is dedicated to learning and progressing every week. I dont expect that everyone is going to get 10’s and standing O’s in the first week… it’s not a professional dance competition. He gets better and more confident week after week, and this was his best week so far!

Roshon – Has been practicing MJ moves infront of a mirror and adoring familiy members since he was 3. Now, he gets to do those same moves on stage and call it ‘ballroom’. I was pretty ticked about Roshon being a member of this cast from the start – he dances. But what really grinds my chops is when stars with previous experience a) pretend it means nothing in this competition and/or b) put every move they know into their dances, no matter what the style is.

Gladys – I could listen to her talk about the ‘Pip’ days for hours. She did NOT use a sob story, instead she interpreted the theme the way I wouldve interpreted it… a memorable year in your life. She used the year she broke into the industry at the Appollo theatre. Her dance was elegant and and heart warming. She used a good ole Sam Cook song and danced to it beautifully. No tricks.

Urkel – I guess I really should be calling him by his ‘real’ name, but I cant bring myself to remember it. I’m partly responsible for his ongoing struggles with identity. Guilty. This may be one of the last chances this guy gets to shed the Urkel iconograpy and move on. If he gets far enough, that’s possible. He might even get a JOB after this. I’m not being mean, I can understand that he would have serious trouble shaking that Urkel character. Last night was not his best dance, and I worry about him fading into the background in this competition. He might need to fall back on Urkel to revive his status on DWTS.

Sherri Shepherd – told the gut wrenching story of a mother who is helplessly watching her newborn suffer. It’s very sad, and she choked me up a few times. She really is just a massive fan of the show, and a proud mother. That’s a winning combination. If Kate Gosselin had a shred of personality, she’d still be famous, and she mightve won DWTS despite her dancing. Sherri Shepherd also happens to be a confident performer and has nailed her dances 3 weeks in a row.

William-Finally showed his famous latin chest and mid section. Cheryl is a pro, she knows what she’s doing! William can certainly move his hips, which is all he really needs to do at this stage in the game. A good dance, he was very much in command and confident with the rhythms and the movements. His PR team is highfiving all around.

Melissa – NO, she didnt say anything about her drug dependancy or those dark years during Little House. Instead, she chose to tell us about her broken back. She’s trying. But with that story, she’s not winning anyone over… unless her dancing is great. But it’s not. The judges gave her a little more praise and adulation than I wouldve given… but in a night of fantastic dancing, perhaps they were wearing rose coloured judging glasses.

Katherine – Needed to work the hardest to connect, so she chose the story of her father dying. It was a very weepy tale, and her dancing was superb. She got the seasons first 10’s. She deserves them, and after last night, she will probably win over some more of the voting public.

Donald – told another sob story about death. So much death in one night, t’s starting to get nausiating. This is monday night, prime time, mirrorball trophy, sequins and open chest vests, Dancing with the stars. geez! Anyways, Donald had a solid effort, you can tell he is another one that needs the time to really master the steps and his performance will get better as he moves forward. However, with such a strong cast and a night of great dancing, he might not be given that chance.

Thoughts?





Get ready for… DWTS Season 14

19 03 2012

ABC doesnt skip a beat. The finale of the hottest show on TV, The Bachelor runs right into the Premiere of the ratings juggernaut Dancing with the Stars. It’s brilliant. Its virtually the same audience. And ABC makes it easy to fill that 8pm Monday timeslot without missing a beat. Monday night is PRIME primse time. NBC finally figured that out and has decided to face off with a legitimate adversary in their hottest rating monster, The Voice. Let them fight it out…it’s great TV on the worst day of the week.Monday is hard to get up to, but easy to stay up for with such fantastic TV filling the night hours.

So the Premier of DWTS airs tonight… let’s take another look at the cast lineup:

Jack Wagner, star of “Melrose Place” (pro partner: Anna Trebunskaya)
Melissa Gilbert, star of “Little House on the Prairie” (pro partner: Maksim Chmerkovskiy)
Donald Driver, Green Bay Packers all-time leading receiver (pro partner: Peta Murgatroyd)
William Levy, telenovela star (pro partner: Cheryl Burke)
Sherri Shepherd, co-host of “The View” (pro partner: Valentin Chmerkovskiy)
Katherine Jenkins, opera star (pro partner: Mark Ballas)
Gavin DeGraw, singer (pro partner: Karina Smirnoff)
Martina Navratilova, tennis star (pro partner: Tony Dovolani)
Roshon Fegan, Disney star (pro partner: Chelsie Hightower)
Maria Menounos, TV host (pro partner: Derek Hough)
Jaleel White, star of “Family Matters” (pro partner: Kym Johnson)
Gladys Knight, music legend  (pro partner: Tristan MacManus)

My innre 90’s child is geeking out at the thought of seeing Urkel on TV again. I think there will be some strong first performances by the obvious: Maria Menenous (how can she miss with Derek?), Hotty William Levy, an eager Melissa Gilbert, an exuberant Sherri Shepherd and solid B-lister Gavin Degraw.

There’s some big names on this list. Well, biggish, let’s not exaggerate. But as usual, there are names on this list even Google had a hard time placing. Those are the people that could benefit the MOST from this exposure and a great first performance. It’s always fun to see the Helios and the Gilles and the JR’s come out fighting in this competition and create a phenomenon with purely GREAT dancing.

Who will it be this year?

It wont be Gladys. It’s never the old ones.

Thoughts?

Who are you most excited to see, and who do you anticipate to come out of nowhere and knock our socks off?





The Voice – Battle Round 2

13 03 2012

The battle rounds continue on The Voice – and it’s a battle alright. Two singers – One team member goes home, and one moves on to the live rounds.

Last night, we saw a few more duels for the ages, and a few more lopsided performances.

The two strongest power singers from Adams team Kim vs Whitney “No More Drama”: Whitney moves on (is it just a pure coincidence that this woman’s name is Whitney?)

From Christina’s team, an odd couple Geoff McBride vs. Sera Hill, “Chain of Fools”: Sera Hill advances (no surprise, Geoff seemed ill prepared to compete stylistically against the much younger, much sassier Sera)

From Blakes team Lex Land vs. Charlotte Sometimes, “Pumped Up Kicks“: Charlotte won the battle (Lex seemed extremely uncomfortbale with the song, and the duel from the start)

From team Cee Lo Sarah Golden vs. Juliet Simms, “Stay with Me“: Juliet Simms moves on (odd pairing results in a very odd clash of styles… physically and vocally).

Team Christina returns with Lee Koch vs. Lindsey Pavao, “Heart Shaped Box”: Lindsey Pavao wins the round (no surprise, Lee was in trouble with this song from the get-go)

Back to team Cee Lo with Jamie Lono vs. Jamar Rogers, “I Want to Know What Love Is”: Jamar Rogers advances (he truly outsang the sandwich maker, almost an unfair battle).

An entertaining bunch – If I had one kibbitz about the show structure – it’s pairing two totally different styles together. I feel liek the point of these rounds is to weed out the weaker singer. Right? So why not pair two similar singers so that one can rise over the other and the team would be more diverse in the end. When you pair two completely differnt style of singer together, you’re automatically getting rid of a vocal talent and unique style – not comparing apples to apples.

You want the strongest players on your team – so weed out the weaker ones!





The Bachelor March 6th: ‘Women Tell All’

6 03 2012

I used to think the ‘Women Tell All’ show was filler, a throw away, completely fake and unimportant to the ‘flow’ of The Bachelor season.

I’m never thrilled when it airs, because I generally speaking don’t learn anything new, nor so I care what the eliminated women have to say.

I was of the same mind this year, but I am loyal to the show (and to my readers who have to sit through the same sloppy TV that I do…) so I tuned in again last night.

I’m not a fan of recapping each girls ‘journey’ on the show – who cares? We’ve already seen it. This is a tactic used to give Chris leading questions, show a split screen where each girl cries over lost love and ABC gets another 2 hours out of the franchise.

Last night, there was a lot of recapping.

But there were some interesting moments that made the show worthwhile to me this year. First, notice that the girls had elected a spokesperson and ringleader… Emily (campaigning HARD for the next Bachelorette… after the OTHER Emily of course). Her right-hand mouthpiece was Blakely (of all people?). They ran the show. They allowed other to speak, of course, but were in control of the room the entire time. Anytime a girl wanted to chime in, you saw them look to one of those two first for permission and then for acknowledgement. Strange.

The only TRULY must-watch moment in the entire show, was when they brought out Courtney to stand trial against the other girls. Honestly, the ladies had been talking smack about Courtney for an hour and a half, and then Chris brings the poor girl out to face the music. Cruel and unusual punishment and torture in my opinion. Even if she WAS a cold hearted, fake, scene stealer… having to sit as a firing squad of overtly dramatic ex-roomies air their rage on national TV is almost a cheap shot pulled by ABC.

Do you agree?

Yes, Courtney on this show was hard to read, and Yes she said some things that were grounds for some discontentment. But girls, you know just as well as I do that when ladies are forced to share space for a long period of time under stressful situations and emotional highs/lows… we arent always poised and rational. Am I wrong?

In my opinion, from what I’ve seen on TV, what I’ve read, even with the brutal edit the show gave her… Courtney is kind of an introvert who can’t connect and work the room with charm in the same way others could. She’s not an Emily who makes up silly raps and makes friends easily. I bet Emily is the life of the party everywhere she goes. She’s not overly warm, like a Kacie B, who attracts people to her genuine disposition.

She doesnt have a TON of charisma, so she probably felt the need to fake it for the purposes of the show and to mask her awkwardness. She strikes me as someone who gets along better with one or two people in a room, rather than a huge party of extroverted individuals.They wanted their 15 minutes of fame too… they just went about it a different way. Now they judge.

Blakely. She called you a stripper because you look like a stripper. You paid to look like a stripper. You bought stripper clothes for the show, and you never met a bikini that was ‘too small’. Maybe you’re a nice person. Maybe you’re a good friend, a good sister, a good daughter. But you CHOSE a role and a ‘look’ for this show. It’s like dying your hair bright purple and wondering why people are ‘always loooking’ at you.

Anyways, they lambasted Courtney to the edge of a breakdown. I don’t think Courtney was capable of much more in terms of her emotional authenticity. It was quite frankly overwhelming. Hard to watch even. The girls were ALL trying to say their piece, ALL trying to lay the smack down, ALL demanding of a ‘sincere apology’.

Havent we all been in a situation where we’ve been misunderstood, and it finally comes to a head? This was it for Courtney. She faced her den of wolves, with no help from anyone, no support, no friends.

Kinda sad right?

Not if she ‘wins’ in the end… so stay tuned.
It DOES beg the question though… is Ben REALLY worth it?








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