T: Last night’s episode was HYSTERICAL. This is a real class act.
T: This season is rapidly winding down. That said, not too much tonight (M will probably add though).
CBS has How I Met Your Mother. As uneven as this show can be, I think it’s had a pretty good season. And the chemistry of the this cast is rare and just gets better year after year. It’s also been fun to see Alyson Hannigan blossom with her pregnancy. 2 Broke Girls is next. TV’s dirtiest comedy is so much fun. And so dirty! You can’t believe you’re watching CBS at 8:30 sometimes! I half-heartedly reco Hawaii 5-0. I’m basically over it save for the cinematography. It’s been renewed. But trust me on this: it will not run the 12 seasons the original did. 8p-9p, 10p.
I still give ABC’s Dancing with the Stars a few minutes of time (truth be told, more each week!). It’s an easy DVR show—watch what you want and skip what you don’t. 8p-10p.
M: I can’t believe that, with your half-hearted recommendations, you still won’t try out The Voice. I’ll be watching. Let’s go Jamar & Juliet! If anything, maybe Christina will piss off more people.
Late Night Round Up (with a little Daytime thrown in): Diane Keaton is on Ellen this afternoon. She’s so amazing. She’ll be great with Ellen. Jay Leno has Rashida Jones on The Tonight Show. Can I say just how radiant, gorgeous Rashida Jones is?! I love this girl. Steve Martin is on, too. Eh. Dave’s got Carrie Underwood on Late Show. Jimmy Kimmel Live has a Mauiloveschachi fave, Jonny Lee Miller. The always yummy Vanessa Williams is along for the ride. For Ellen, check your local listings. 11:35p, 12am.
T: Say what you will about Whitney on NBC (and there is much to be said…not ALL bad…but), but this is one funny chick. And Deadline.com announced she’s going to have her own talk show, backed by her fiercest champion, Chelsea Handler. I love this girl and I think this show will be great.
My only question is…how many of these cable talk shows can we have? Chelsea is amazing. Kathy is amusing. But a total rip off of Chelsea. Is Whitney going to be more of the same? It’s definitely time to reinvent the wheel.
But I am cautiously optimistic!
M: Hmmm. I’ll probably check it out. Curious as to whether I’ll like her less scripted self. My assumption is that her stand-up is written out in advance - seems that way during the roasts.
T: Veep is fantastical. Julia Louis-Dreyfus earned herself her next Emmy after two eps. Just damn fucking funny (I’ve got both eps for you, M). Besides the fact she can do no wrong and, totally, totally overachieves, the entire cast is fab. And the writing is comically brilliant. You can’t say this about many shows, but this show is 1000% unique.
And I am finally back on the Mad Men wagon. I thought it sucked all of last year. And for most of this year. Tonight, they finally REALLY got back on track. And I fucking love Megan. Poor, pretty Sally really saw a lot tonight. The writing was tight, the characters were totally themselves. And there was no Betty! Which always makes things better.
When Eddie Izzard voices over the emergency procedures for the theater, you know you’re in for a ride. What About Dick? is one of the funniest live theater events I’ve ever seen. Insane cast - absolutely insane. Creator Eric Idle called this group of British (and areas surrounding) comedy all-stars “comedy porn.” I’m still singing Billy Connolly’s rousing “Lonely Trout” song in my head; and if I can find the lyrics, I’ll post them for you. (Not a musical, but there was a sing-along).
It’s a clever, silly farce and I laughed every minute; at the intended dialogue, the ad libs, and the fuck ups. (My favorite: Billy Connolly, as the utterly incomprehensible Inspector McGuffin, takes his place in front of the mic, stands there waiting for a minute, and then mutters, “Whenever your fucking rrrrready,” to his castmates, who quickly scurry to their places.)
Most of the cast played multiple roles. Tracey Ullman was magnificent. Eddie Izzard is sexy, hilarious, and a genius; and Tim Curry, with that deep baritone voice, is a not-so-closeted gay riot as Reverend Whoopsie. Jane Leeves and Sophie Winkleman are absolute pros. Russell Brand, of whom I am a fan, was funny; but was totally outclassed on this stage. Understandable - live theater is a unique animal, and most of these folks have been doing it for a long time.
The plot synopsis from the website, because I couldn’t possibly describe it, gives you a sense of the writing and humor:
“The astonishing cast we have assembled to work on my Dick is a comedy writer’s wet dream…“It’s comedy porn.”- Eric Idle
Idle callsWHAT ABOUT DICK?an “Emotion Picture for Radio,” set between 1910 and eight o’clock, which tells the story of young Dick (Russell Brand) who is studying philosophy and gynecology at Oxford; his two cousins: Emma, (Jane Leeves) an emotionally retarded English girl; her kleptomaniac sister Helena (Sophie Winkleman) and their dipsomaniac Aunt Maggie (Tracey Ullman) all live together in Kensington in a large, rambling, Edwardian novel. When the Reverend Whoopsie (Tim Curry) discovers a piano on a beach, a plot is set afoot that can be solved only by a private Dick, the incomprehensible Scottish sleuth Inspector McGuffin (Billy Connolly) who with the aid of Sergeant Ken Russell (Jim Piddock) finally reveals the identity of the Houndsditch Mutilator.
Described by Idle as “Oscar Wilde on acid, or like Downton Abbey, only even funnier,” “Dick”begins with the birth of the personal vibrator, invented in Shagistan in 1898 by Deepak Obi Ben Kingsley (Eddie Izzard), and tells the story of the subsequent decline of the British Empire as seen through the eyes of a piano.
What About Dick? has one more date at the Orpheum Theater in LA tonight, and there are just a few $50 balcony seats left. If you don’t have plans, go see this once in a lifetime comedy gem.
T: Decent viewing night ahead.
ABC gives us the first of the last three eps of Desperate Housewives. It’s been a long, roller coaster ride with this show. But I would say it’s been worth it. While the quality has often been questionable, they have always been blessed with a talented cast. (Teri Hatcher aside.). And seeing Eva Longoria blossom has been a treat. Marc Cherry says he’s had the finale in his head from the beginning. Let’s hope it’s worthy of this really great final season. Next up is GCB. Its future is definitely in peril. But it’s so much fun. Had DH’s ratings not fallen off so much this season we’d probably be seeing a better performance from GCB. But it is what it is. Catch it while you can and we’ll see just how ABC’s development came out. It’s worthy of a season 2. 9p-11p.
The Amazing Race is new over at CBS. Still the gold standard of reality shows. We’re winding down the season so tension will be high. Followed by the season finale (sniff) of the best written show on television, The Good Wife. Possible shake-up at Lockhart Gardner. Alicia drama with Peter (could we get him written off? But I suppose he makes a good spoiler). What else will we learn about Kalinda? She is easily one of the most fascinating characters on TV EVER. Watch tonight and catch up over the summer if TGW has eluded you. It’s such a WONDERFUL show. 8p-10p.
Showtime gives us the gifts that are Nurse Jackie and The Big C. NJ is always great when it focuses on Grace and tonight is one of those nights. I don’t agree with some critics who have turned on Gabourey Sidibe. I think she’s done an outstanding job on The Big C. And her brother/sister relationship with Adam is very sweet. Showtime is doing everything right at the moment. We all know that can shift on a dime. Let’s savor while we can. 6p satellite, 9p cable.
AMC has The Killing and a resurgent Mad Men. I’ve been especially critical of MM the last season and most of this one. I will remain cautiously optimistic we’re on an upswing. Sally has a part in the show tonight and I love that little girl. So things are looking promising. 6p-8p satellite. 9p-11p cable.
HBO has the must watch new show Veep. Julia Louis-Dreyfus is beyond phenomenal in this crazy role. And she can say Fuck like no one else. It’s such an inventive little show that doesn’t feel like a little show. This is HBO’s answer back to Showtime (which, trust me, kicks HBO in the teeth to do after dominating for so many years). 7p satellite, 10p cable.
M: You’ve got em all, T!
T: One of the best concerts I’ve ever been to.
Let’s start with the venue. We were first time McCabers. And it definitely won’t be the last. This guitar shop with a makeshift concert venue in the back is so perfectly intimate and lovely. Acoustics were perfect. The seating was perfect. Could not reco a concert here more.
And then there was Susanna. Ray’s probably one of her biggest fans. And I love her too. She was off the charts entertaining tonight. Her voice, which I feel is one of the most unique in all of pop music (she shares that with Belinda), was so rich and full. I don’t feel that always comes out on the radio. From her new material (GREAT!) to some of the Bangles material, she treated us to a feast of music magic. Interspersed throughout it all was banter with us, the audience, that was very intimate (yes, that word again) and vulnerable and real. She presented what I would imagine is the true Susanna Hoffs. Different from when we’ve seen her with The Bangles. Not better, per say. Just more…her. The new stuff, like I said, was great (and maybe we can get R to talk more about that), but I tell you what, Eternal Flame gets me every time. We’re talking slight tears. It’s one of those songs that just takes you back. In this case, to childhood…and to R. She was just so fantastic tonight.
A few other notes. Her husband, who has directed the blockbuster movie franchises Austin Powers and Meet the Parents was so doting and helpful to many in the audience. (I’m guessing the place holds about 100 people.) It was extremely sweet to see him watch her singing. And to see him running around greeting people and being an all around awesome dude. Good on you, Jay Roach. You are one stand up dude.
I should probably mention that, aside from sounding better than she ever has, Susanna looks astonishingly beautiful. Beauty comes with age these days. And she’s overflowing with beauty. And if there’s been work done, it’s the best, most natural I have ever seen.
Finally, she has a bandmate named Brazzel. OK. It’s Andrew Brassel. But it sounds like Brazzel. And he’s awesome. Great guitarist and back up singer.
Just all around a wonderful night. To look over and see R’s smile was worth its weight in gold.
R: Set List (from the sold out 8pm show):
Different Drum (Stone Poneys cover) (M: LOVE this song! Linda Ronstadt’s early days)
All I’ve Got to Do (Beatles cover)
Eternal Flame (T: Breathtaking.)
All I Want
Medley: Manic Monday/1999/Sunday Morning/Femme Fatale (Prince/Velvet Underground covers)
In Your Room
Hero Takes a Fall
Holding My Breath*
Teacher Teacher (Rockpile cover)
Cinnamon Girl (Neil Young cover)
Rain (Beatles cover)
*from her upcoming new solo album “Someday” out July 17th.
T: Not a thing! Go see The Five Year Engagement!
T: …to see Christie Brinkley in Chicago. Gag inducing.
M: Could it possibly be as awful as Brooke Shields in Grease? Can’t sing, can’t dance, can’t act. Sounds great! This was inflicted on me years ago & I still haven’t recovered.