Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Reviews-Sarah Palin's Alaska,The Good Wife,The Apprentice 2010

Reviews of this year’s “The Apprentice” and “The Good Wife” along with a Dance/Stars update. Plus “Sarah Palin’s Alaska”.

Pic of the Day

”Sarah Palin’s Alaska”

Link to Web Site for this series.

Seriously folks, let’s begin with Hank Steuver, a Washington Post TV reviewer who, I’ll not mince words here, really needs to get laid.

Perhaps as he smokes his cigarette and is mellow he could then tune in to TLC’s “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” and not be so full of spite and hate. Not to mention describing events in the show that never happened.

First the title of his review on 11/10/10 “So many reasons to watch show, so few insights”…really Hank, no insights, no insights at all? A closeup of a fissure in an actual glacier and this isn’t an insight? Hank, you call Palin a “fruit bat”…dear Lord, Hank, go at it again with the wife. You need to calm down.

Hank then describes, well I don’t know what he’s describing but the words written: “The hapless camper whom taxpayers have to rescue at great expense after she loses her Verizon signal and gets hopelessly disoriented”. Help me out here Hank, just WHERE on the first show you are reviewing did this happen?

In further description of the show, you describe Sarah as “a woman who fancies herself as something of a nature enthusiast who wants to take advantage of the short-but-sweet Alaskan summer.” Why, Hank, does Sarah Palin only “fancy” herself as a nature enthusiast? By this viewer, who must have watched a different show than you, Sarah Palin is definitely a nature enthusiast and does go to great lengths to enjoy the short lived Alaskan summer. I so assert this because, well, first, she said she is a nature enthusiast and spent a lot of time out in, well, nature….go with me Hank. She also mentioned the short Alaskan summers and how the family seeks to spend many of their waking hours outdoors and during much of the show she, and her family, are, indeed, outdoors, stay with me here Hank.

Palin Derangement Syndrome is already cresting to a mighty wave and dear Lord by 2012, when Palin runs against Obama and beats him like a drum, one must assume that folks like Hank will be safely institutionalized lest they kill their loved ones and cut off all their hair.

I’m not normally a big fan of nature shows but “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” managed to keep my attention for the hour it was on. This was because, well I do like Sarah Palin and I was curious. I am also interested in Alaska, again this is mainly due to Sarah Palin and how she praises the state she so obviously loves, a fact I learned as I read her book ”Going Rogue”-review here.

In fact the days as of this writing here in the swamps of Delaware are getting increasingly short. While our winters are somewhat mild here along the coast, winter does bring darker days and I tend to get…dark. I can’t imagine living many months in total darkness, cannot imagine.

As I pointed out to Hank of the Palin Derangement Syndrome, there is much of intrigue to even my own self, an admitted nature show NON-afficiando. The fissures in the glacier, for example, fascinated me. I’d never seen such a thing. It was interesting, too, how the glacier climbers had to rope themselves together lest one fall haplessly down a glacier fissure, never to get out for lack of tethering to another human. Gee, you think if I learned something new at age 60 that there might be insights on this show.

There is a bit of a reality type of air about the show but it isn’t overdone. Palin shows us her home-made studio where she communicates with Fox. We see her working at her desk, argue with her children, deal with familial matters, wrestle with nosy neighbors. But it’s no “At Home With the Kardashians”, don’t let the nuts like Hank tell you this.

The look into the home life of the Palins is brief, non-intrusive, yet informative, somewhat fascinating. For here is a woman who, by a mere Facebook entry, can scare Obamer to death, who managed to hypnotize half the country into voting for her daughter on Dancing With the Stars, who has once normal folks like Hank frothing at the mouth and writing silly lies upon command. Yet her house looks fairly normal, hardly a mansion. I think perhaps this is Sarah’s intent but please don’t tell Hank I said this. Any notion that Sarah Palin might be considering a run for President scares PDS sufferers to an awful state.

In “Sarah Palin’s Alaska”, the viewers is treated to aerial views of that intriguing state, to close-up fights of grizzlies, to a variety of little known but fascinating facts about this state most of us mainlanders know so little about.

I think it’s a timely and very informative bit of television, offered, of course, by The Learning Channel. Again, don’t tell Hank, but the show is attracting viewers in the millions, man this upsets the PDS sufferers all to hell.

Spend some time watching this show, folks, DVR it. It’s worth the time and you’ll learn a thing or two.

And don’t forget to vote for Sarah Palin in 2012!

”The Good Wife”

Web site link for this show.

Julianna Margulies was once the star of the popular series “ER”. She now plays the part of Alicia Florrick on CBS’ “The Good Wife”.

I decided to do a review of this show because hey, I thought it was a new offering. Further research has me discovering this series has been on since 2009.

Below, a truncated description of the series’ basis from the linked site above.

¬THE GOOD WIFE is a drama starring Emmy Award winner Julianna Margulies as a wife and mother who boldly assumes full responsibility for her family and re-enters the workforce after her husband's very public sex and political corruption scandal lands him in jail. Pushing aside the betrayal and public humiliation caused by her husband, Peter, Alicia Florrick starts over by pursuing her original career as a defense attorney.

Below, the show’s actors/charlacters:

Julianna Margulies ... Alicia Florrick (41 episodes, 2009-2011)

Matt Czuchry ... Cary Agos (41 episodes, 2009-2011)

Archie Panjabi ... Kalinda Sharma (41 episodes, 2009-2011)

Josh Charles ... Will Gardner (41 episodes, 2009-2011)

Christine Baranski ... Diane Lockhart (41 episodes, 2009-2011)

Chris Noth ... Peter Florrick (25 episodes, 2009-2010)

Makenzie Vega ... Grace Florrick (23 episodes, 2009-2010)

Graham Phillips ... Zach Florrick (19 episodes, 2009-2010)

My first comment on this series is that I didn’t think Marguilies was a very good actress on ER and I don’t think she’s a very good actress on this series either.

Mostly what Marguilies does is…well she just “looks”. Maybe you hadda be there, but it’s like when anything dramatic, surprising or sudden happens in the plot line, the camera pans to Marguillies and just focus’ on her face. Her face, meanwhile, doesn’t break into a smile, a grimace, a scowl, nothing.

The woman does have striking blue eyes. I’m thinking maybe the producers think it’s enough to focus on her face, which of course includes those eyes, and the viewer will be mesmerized in a fashion. I’m sitting in the chair wanting to pelt the woman, tell her to move her lips, raise her eyebrows, ANYTHING.

As memory serves, she had the same sort of non-acting technique in ER.

That being said, there are some really good characters on this series that manage, along with Marguiles’ blue eyes, to make this a very entertaining series.

The night I tuned in for a review the guest star was Michael Fox. Fox is suffering from Parkinson’s disease and it’s a shame. In the plot line of the story in which he starred, he played an opposing attorney who used his disease as part of his defense. Marguillies was leading her firm’s lawsuit against a drug manufacturer who produced a drug that allegedly made the plaintiff’s mother commit suicide.

It appears that Fox, who played a wonderful and entertaining part on this show but is really a liberal dolt, is on medicine that really goes a long way in controlling his symptoms. For sure he had major tics and twitches, as that terrible disease does bring about, but he seems to function very well, much better than victims of Parkingson’s disease of times past could function for the glory of American medicine.

There is a bevy of various characters working in Marguiles law firm. I’d also suggest that this show must have a bang up group of writers. The plot lines are always interesting, make good use of the characters and always managed to end the show with an amusing twist.

At times, as required, the show will glom on the relationship of the main character and her daughter. Again, close ups of Marguiles’ icey blue eyes are the main emotion she displays but it must be.

I would strongly recommend this series for its good writing. I put it in my DVR for repeat taping such was my surprise enjoyment.

As for Michael Fox, damn, they ought to find a permanent spot for him on this series. He was very good.

The Apprentice 2010

NBC Web Site for this series

I think Clint and Liza are the finalists for this series and by the time of this posting a winner will likely already have been determined. I say I “think” because the NBC web site for this series, hey, you’d think they’d have big pictures of the two finalists, grand banners promoting the finale, perhaps a game or two to guess who wins.

I have watched every single episode in this contest, which I was glad to have come back. My DVR, a Comcast thing, tends to cut off the end of shows, I’m not at all sure way. This is the time, however, when those who are to be fired are, in fact, fired. I note that the ending time of many shows is , example, 9:01 pm”. If I am taping two shows at once, something I am rightfully allowed to do and pay for the privelage, if a program doesn’t finish until the minute “01” and another one begins on the minute-“00”, well it messes things up. Someday I shall call Comcast and find out why this is so.

I know Stephanie got fired from the team of Liza and Stephanie. The NBC site did have a video featuring Steuart getting fired, so the text goes, and I was quite surprised. Steuart got fired during my DVR’s “01” moment. Goodness, Clint and Steuart won that last task handily and I was assuming Trump would have these two be the finalists. Lord knows Trump disliked Liza enough, as I did for the child showed pretty much zero talent as any kind of upstanding entrepreneur. All along I thought Clint would be in the final and as of this writing, two days before the finale, I predict he will win.

Evidently Trump wanted a final matchup between a male and a female or he thought Steuart, a handsome, personable fellow, to be a bit too young.

Trump used the desultory economy as reason to bring back this formerly popular reality show. There’ve been several variations of this show, including a disasterous one with Martha Stewart taking Trump’s place as She Who Must Be Pleased. The Donald did what he’s most famous for, he got out in public and blamed Martha for the failure, very loudly, traitorously, no class at all.

I kind of like the series with Stewart at the helm but it’s no matter. Fact is The Apprentice as a reality series had grown tired and that’s life. Trump did do another thing he often does, which is to blatantly copy another show, in this case “The Celebrity Apprentice”, a reality show still running and quite successful.

It remains to be seen if The Apprentice come again will catch on with the public. The basis of this version of the show is that all contenders were once happening, smart and hip entrepreneurs who now suffer either outright failure or greatly ailing businesses, all due to the economy and through no fault of their own.

The candidates on this version of the show are all good choices, ranging in age from early 20’s to early 40’s. They do seem bright, eager, smart. In this series, Trump arranges interviews with those candidates who he deems worth a look-see. The interviews are with CEO’s of other large companies. Whether or not that individual eventually gets a job at the company for which they interviewed is not clear. It’s like everything else on The Apprentice…subliminal advertising for a company or product.

Not that there’s anything wrong with this.

Candidate Clint seems an ideal winner for this series. He’s a family man, he’s ran economically profitable businesses, he’s friendly, personable, has good leadership qualities.

As to the question of whether The Apprentice will survive this effort to make a mighty comeback, well my daughter watches it. She’s a former Apprentice afficiando. I watched it and liked it. I’d watch it again.

But it’s a tottering economy, unpredictable. We shall see.

Gilles Marin-A Dancing Boob

I did write a review of this year’s “Dancing With the Stars”, HERE. This reality series is one of my faves. I was so wrong on my choice of winner and yes, I’d never have given Bristol Palin a chance to be in the final three. I did praise her efforts, however, and by me the way it ended was probably fair.

With all the kerfluffle over Bristol Palin, somebody contacted a former second place winner, Gilles Marini, now on ABC’s “Brothers and Sisters”, for his opinion.

Now Mr. Marini is a handsome dude and he was, of course, a very good dancer. His acting’s not half bad although his stardom is based more on his looks than his ability to carry a feature film.

Please, Gilles, stick to acting and dancing. NOBODY wants to see two guys dancing on this series. OR two girls either, frankly. Perhaps a spin-off from the show although I really doubt it. Part of the beauty of the dance is having male and female, each with distinctive parts. Get two of the same sex dancing and what you have is PORN, not an intriguing reality show.

"I would love to see same-sex dancing," our pal Gilles Marini said last night at the premiere of Disney's new animated Rapunzel musical movie, Tangled. "I've seen it. It's pretty intense."

He added, "For guys, two girls dancing? Hello! And two guys dancing" I'm sure a lot of people would like to see that, too."

Marini, who came in second place when he competed in DWTS' eighth season, also thinks it may be time for a change in the voting process because of Bristol Palin. "I'm sure the Republicans are out there saying vote for her because that is good publicity for us," he said. "They don't care if she can dance.

"They should do 75 percent of the vote from the judges and 25 percent from the viewers. Right now, it could become a farce. I don't want the show to be a farce."


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