Hollywood: The dog days of summer TV
By Tim Parks
It’s upon us, those dog days of TV viewing, where we are stuck in that in between place of season finales and their premieres come fall. So what’s a TV junkie to do? It’s a pretty scary option of weighing the odds of, gulp, going outside or staying in and aimlessly channel surfing, especially when the remote roulette falls upon another season of “Toddlers and Tiaras”; that show just ain’t right on so many levels. Just consider me Julie McCoy, your TV cruise director (minus the cocaine problem), as we navigate the sometimes choppy waters of summertime viewing.
Fortunately, there are actually some shows, while not necessarily exciting and or new, which are expecting you to come aboard to take a lookiloo.
Bravo is making gay viewers happy by continuing their “Real Housewives” franchise and is delivering a one-two bitch slap with season two of New Jersey and the premiere of D.C.
I was a little miffed that the powers-that-be at the network made us wait an extra week to see the fight between Anne Heche (singing with a lesbian does not a lesbian make, k?), I mean Danielle Staub, Teresa Giudice, Jacqueline Laurita and daughter Ashley Holmes, and it only involved name calling and hair pulling! Hell, I could have just watched “Jerry Springer” for that kind of brawl!
The cast of D.C. has already had its fair share of drama prior to its August 5 debut, as one of its Housewives, Michaele Salahi (gesundheit), crashed a White House State Dinner earlier this year. Oh dear, sounds like someone hasn’t listened to New York’s resident Countess, LuAnn De Lesseps, on her, um, hot track, “Money Can’t Buy You Class.”
Apparently reality TV has adopted the real estate mantra of “location, location, location,” as New Jersey and Miami seem to be where all of the action is. At some point, America’s love affair with The Garden State will hit a wall, like George Michael out for a drive.
Until then I guess it should come as no surprise, heavy emphasis on I guess, that MTV decided to move “Jersey Shore” to Florida…would it really still be considered the “Jersey Shore?”
Anyhoo, Snooki, “The Situation,” Pauly D. and the rest of Cheetos colored cast are back for more drinking, fighting, tanning, drinking, tanning, making out and more fist pumps than you’d see at a Leather Pride event!
While another drinking/fighting series, “The Bad Girls Club,” will up the roots of the show (and the ones from the girls hair featured on it) to Miami, which is funny because I thought that Kourtney and Khloe Kardashian had already taken it earlier this summer. I just can’t keep up with those Kardashians!
Meanwhile, Jersey is still basking in the orange glow of the spotlight with two inaugural series.
Oxygen’s “Jersey Couture” follows a family run business where every other cast member seems to have adopted the Jersey Shores kids’ knack for nicknames, I mean c’mon, its getting a little ridiculous that someone named Kimberly goes by “Kim” and Christina by “Chrissy.” It’s insanity, I tells ya!
Hopefully, the E! /Style Network’s “Jerseylicious” won’t leave a bad taste in the mouths of its viewers being force fed more of the state.
However, no summer would be complete without a helping of “Big Brother,” and this year there has been a gay guy (Ragan) and bisexual gal (Annie) vying for the cash money prize.
Castmate Britney was super excited that there was “a flaming homosexual” in the game, so that they could chat about boys, shopping and “Sex and the City” (the series and the movies). Way to stereotype there, Britney, now I’m off to a slumber party with my gal pals to talk about boys, shopping and “Sex and the City”…hey, wait a minute!
Even though its summer, school is in session on LOGO’s “RuPaul’s Drag U,” which brings back previous favorite contestants, and even Shannel, for a little bit of education for real women on how to become drag queens, so I take it Cher will make an appearance.
Speaking of makeovers…The L Word has been re-christened “The Real L Word” and follows the lives of six L.A. lesbians, and will conclude on the 15th with an episode revolving around going to Dinah Shore. Hmm, that’s queer.
The Written Word
Seeing as there are increasing gay and gay adjacent reality shows, it should come as no surprise that it’s starting to spill over into scripted fare. Why you could shake a stick at ’em, and in that, ahem, vein MTV trots out “The Hard Times of RJ Berger,” which showcases a 15-year-old high schooler who is all man below the belt, thanks for creeping me out MTV!
Mackenzie Phillips’ career may be rolling over in its grave with the success of TV sibling Valerie Bertinelli’s show “Hot in Cleveland,” but hopefully producers don’t throw her a professional bone and cast her as her sister, otherwise they may have to put out the call for a father figure for the gals – awkward! This show single-handedly proves that Betty White is comedy’s golden girl, as the first episode was the most watched program in TV Land’s history.
Beginning on the 16th, Laura Linney has the acting challenge of making light of having “The Big C” on her new Showtime series, while her suburban mom character will be joined onscreen by Precious actress Gabourey Cinnabuns, I mean, Sidibe and Cynthia Nixon of “SATC.” Oh, and the first episode is directed by Bill Condon (Dreamgirls).
“True Blood” is sinking its fangs into its third season over on HBO, and I am starting to wonder if Sam Merlotte (Sam Trammell) may be shape shifting into a homosexual, as he shared a rather sensual man-on-vampire scene with Bill Compton (Stephen Moyer).
Cut. Print. That’s A Wrap!
Well, it looks like I can see Puerto Vallarta off in the distance (the Mexican Riviera was a “Love Boat” hot spot destination, after all), much like I can see the fall on the horizon with its promise of new televised ways to keep us entertained…hopefully. Until next time, that’s all of the news that’s fit to print.