Celebritology 2.0: TV


Posted at 09:50 AM ET, 01/30/2011

On SNL, Mark Zuckerberg meets Jesse Eisenberg

In an appearance that generated plenty of advance buzz, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg stood side by side last night with SNL host Jesse Eisenberg, attempting to demonstrate that he totally has a sense of humor about looking like a weasel in a film that stands among the front runners for Oscar's best picture. Was he successful? More or less, although it's clear that Zuckerberg definitely should hang on to his day job as head of Facebook; his line delivery probably did not convince Lorne Michaels that he should regularly appear in sketches alongside Kristen Wiig. But he showed up on SNL with a smile on his face, made it clear he has no hard feelings about the success of "The Social Network" and added another degree of cultural relevancy to a movie that now must persuade Oscar voters that it is, indeed, the film of the year. If you missed...

By Jen Chaney  |  09:50 AM ET, 01/30/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV, TV

Posted at 04:40 PM ET, 01/21/2011

'Portlandia': A sneak peek

Can Fred Armisen succeed at sketch comedy outside of "Saturday Night Live"? He gives it a try, starting tonight in "Portlandia," a half-hour of hipster-hilarious vignettes co-starring Carrie Brownstein, formerly of Sleater-Kinney. Based on these two clips (see above and below) it just might be worth watching. And I say that as someone who often tries to watch Netflix while texting and Facebooking at the same time (again, see above) and as someone who feels an inexplicable pressure to have read that thing about the National in Paste and that steampunk article on Boing Boing (again, see below). The show airs at 10:30 p.m. EST on IFC....

By Jen Chaney  |  04:40 PM ET, 01/21/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 03:20 PM ET, 01/19/2011

Ricky Gervais: After the Golden Globes, it's back to 'The Office'

Ricky Gervais. (HBO) America, Ricky Gervais isn't done with us yet. Next stop? Scranton, Pa. With Sunday's controversial Golden Globes-hosting gig still fresh in our minds, today comes news that Gervais will reprise his role as David Brent -- the original boss of the U.K. version of "The Office" -- on the Steve Carell-led stateside version. The cameo will reportedly air on Jan. 27. Though details are sketchy, Gervais will -- according to Michael Ausiello -- run into his American counterpart. Comedy, we assume, ensues. This isn't Gervais' first foray into scripted TV for Yanks. His show "Extras," originally created for the BBC, also aired on HBO for two seasons. Gervais also penned an episode of "The Simpsons" and an episode, "The Convict," of the American version of "The Office." poll by twiigs.com Source: TVLine.com Related: Should Ricky Gervais return as Golden Globes host? After the jump, a look...

By Liz Kelly  |  03:20 PM ET, 01/19/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV | Tags:  Ricky Gervais

Posted at 01:35 PM ET, 01/18/2011

See the new totally NSFW 'Parks and Recreation' promo

The new season of "Parks and Recreation" kicks off on NBC Thursday evening. Just in time to ride the viral video tradewinds, the cast launched the following promo video -- featuring an eff-bomb dropping Rob Lowe -- on FunnyorDie.com (did I mention that the language is TOTALLY NSFW?): Oh, and that line Lowe drops about owning Miramax? He's not kidding....

By Liz Kelly  |  01:35 PM ET, 01/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV | Tags:  Parks and Recreation

Posted at 12:21 PM ET, 01/18/2011

Watch the new 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' teaser trailer

What is the deal with shows that won't go away? Larry David. (Reuters) When we're talking about the "Real Housewives" franchise, the deal is raw, my friends. But we're not. We're talking about Larry David and his quirky, acquired-taste HBO comedy "Curb Your Enthusiasm" and so we're cautiously optimistic. Yes, the show we all thought was pretty, pretty finished when it last aired in 2009 -- when the "Seinfeld" principals (Jerry Seinfeld, Jason Alexander, Michael Richards and Julia Louis-Dreyfus) reunited and finally ended both shows (or so we thought) in a rare chance at re-doing the original (lame) "Seinfeld" closer -- is coming back sometime this year. More after the jump, including the new HBO teaser......

By Liz Kelly  |  12:21 PM ET, 01/18/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 01:46 PM ET, 01/11/2011

MTV's 'Skins': Too hot for American TV?

Back in 2009, when Jen reviewed the DVD release of the British teen drama "Skins," she wrote that the show, "makes 'controversial' American adolescent fare such as 'Gossip Girl' or the new '90210' look like 'Little House on the Prairie.'" Of course that was before MTV launched its new flagship series, "Jersey Shore," a non-fictional close-up of young people (though, in this case all of legal drinking age) drinking, clubbing, having lots of sex and talking about it ad nauseum. On Monday, MTV launches its own stateside adaptation of "Skins," which based on the preview clip below, will have parents of teens quaking in their Uggs:...

By Liz Kelly  |  01:46 PM ET, 01/11/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV | Tags:  Skins

Posted at 03:24 PM ET, 12/23/2010

On this very special Festivus, one man makes it possible to celebrate with 'Seinfeld'

As Festivus revelers around the nation gather today to air their grievances and engage in feats of strength, we can all commemorate the Frank Costanza-founded holiday the way pop culture intended: by watching a broadcast rerun of the "Seinfeld" episode "The Strike." Apparently a Fox employee in Sacramento recently realized his affiliate was not airing the Festivus episode of "Seinfeld" on Dec. 23, which is Festivus Day. Like any rational human being, he deemed this unacceptable. "I said, 'I'm feeling that my religious beliefs are being compromised here. There is no Festivus episode scheduled, and that's blasphemy,'" Fox40 employee Greg Saunders told a representative from Sony, according to a report from, well, Fox40. (Look, it's a slow news day and journalism is dying. Network staffers apparently now have to make their own news, as well as cover it.) As a result of Saunders's bold action, the Festivus episode will air...

By Jen Chaney  |  03:24 PM ET, 12/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 10:46 AM ET, 12/16/2010

In January, MTV hits the 'Jersey Shore' again

Some shows make us wait like a year between seasons ("Walking Dead," I'm looking at you), but luckily in the land of "reality," a dozen episodes can be produced in just a few weeks and ready for public consumption lickety-split. Such is the case with "Jersey Shore," MTV's new classic about a group of meatheads and hair-extension mannequins who curse, fight, drink, nap and do lots of laundry. Season 2's sweaty finale aired in late October, but already Snooki and the gang are slated to return to cable on Jan. 6 (which totally messes up my "Quit killing brain cells with 'Jersey Shore' " New Year's resolution). Watch the newly released promo below to get a peek at a drunk (imagine that) Snooki, chick-on-chick fistfights and the newest cast member, Deena Nicole Cortese (who looks like she's going to take on Snooki in the leopard-print mini-dress department): Related: Celebritology Giftology...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:46 AM ET, 12/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV | Tags:  Jersey Shore

Posted at 12:34 PM ET, 12/09/2010

Ranked: 'The Office' Christmas episodes

NBC is devoting tonight's entire Thursday comedy block to the holidays, including a very special Claymation episode of "Community" (Claymation is always special, people) and an hour-long holiday episode of "The Office" in which (per the video preview above) the love of Michael Scott's life returns. Thankfully, Holly will be portrayed by the real Amy Ryan and not a Claymation version. Aside from generating discussion about the imminent departure of Steve Carell, "The Office" admittedly hasn't done a whole lot to generate water cooler chatter these days. But the Dunder Mifflin crew has demonstrated a consistent flair for yuletide episodes. So tonight's installment -- entitled "Classy Christmas," directed by Rainn Wilson and noted as the fifth holiday celebration in the show's history -- will hopefully be a memorable one. Before tonight's "Office" airs, though, let's pause to rank the four previous fa-la-la episodes from best to worst. I'll start,...

By Jen Chaney  |  12:34 PM ET, 12/09/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 11:22 AM ET, 12/03/2010

Q&A: 'The Walking Dead's' Andrew Lincoln

Andrew Lincoln as deputy sheriff Rick Grimes. (Getty Images) You may not be familiar with Andrew Clutterbuck, a man with a name that even he admits sounds more hobbit than human. Which is why, for the purposes of his acting career -- which is suddenly red hot -- he changed his last name to Lincoln. You can catch him on Sunday nights in AMC's newest hit, "The Walking Dead." Lincoln plays the earnest, and decidedly American, Rick Grimes -- a small-town Georgia sheriff who finds himself leading a group of survivors through lots of gutsy escapades after zombies take over the world. How did a British actor (one who is most often remembered by Americans as a lovesick friend opposite Keira Knightley in "Love Actually") end up playing a Southern sheriff? "I always say I got it because my son had just been born and I hadn't slept for...

By Liz Kelly  |  11:22 AM ET, 12/03/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV | Tags:  Walking Dead

Posted at 08:10 AM ET, 12/01/2010

Victoria's big secret: Anne Vyalitsyna

I'm not sure what the point of the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show is, aside from targeting the same audience that slavers over the lingerie purveyor's ubiquitous snail mail catalogs: the average male. In any case, the annual panty fest aired last night on CBS. Maybe I don't speak for all women when I say we're not particularly inspired to drop scads of cash on whimsical underwear after watching a horde of supermodels strut down a runway clad in bras and panties that, while making them look like, well, supermodels leave most of us resembling someone who needs a hug, a gym membership and a big soft bathrobe. So this one is for the boys, or anyone else who is busy Googling Anne Vyalitsyna this morning. Who is Vyalitsyna? Why, she's a supermodel who also happens to be dating Maroon 5 frontman (who was front and center for last night's show)...

By Liz Kelly  |  08:10 AM ET, 12/01/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV, TV

Posted at 02:15 PM ET, 11/22/2010

'The Walking Dead': Plot points to consider after episode four

"Walking Dead" has shuffled past George Romero, right into Bizarro World territory. Assuming that a drama about a world teeming with zombies and the plucky few who manage to avoid becoming dinner isn't already bizarro enough, the four elements below are adding to this author's incredulity and, possibly, affecting the show's overall believability. Again, this assumes that a show about oozing putrescent creatures who want nothing so much as to chomp off your shoulder can have its believability measured. Before we get started, I do need to hand out (perhaps not the best terminology if you watched Sunday's episode) kudos for the show's first truly thrilling surprise zombie attack. Now, on to four plot points that kept me from fully enjoying Sunday's episode. And, yes, there are massive spoilers ahead, so if you haven't watched, bookmark this link for later:...

By Liz Kelly  |  02:15 PM ET, 11/22/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV | Tags:  Walking Dead

Posted at 05:12 PM ET, 11/16/2010

Gwyneth Paltrow, 'Glee' and why the mocking of her insouciance must end

The Internet could not exist without a little snark. It's the sarcastic, sometimes borderline obnoxious engine that makes the entire blogosphere run. And when it comes to celebrities, there are few glamorous types that Web commenters enjoy flinging snark at more than Gwyneth Paltrow. Of course, that includes readers and commenters right here in Celebritology, where expressing outrage over the insouciance of Ms. Paltrow, her "insufferable" Goop suggestions and her general, alleged prissy pants-ness has become something of a pastime. Here's the thing, though: I think the era of hating on Gwyneth Paltrow might be over. At the very least, a lengthy moratorium should probably be issued. Because with her appearance tonight on "Glee" -- a preview of which can be viewed below, via Gwyneth's version of Cee-Lo's "Forget You" -- Paltrow's mission to charm the American public may be complete....

By Jen Chaney  |  05:12 PM ET, 11/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 02:28 PM ET, 11/15/2010

'The Walking Dead': Why, Rick Grimes? Why?

Caution: spoilers ahead (and in the video above): We're three episodes into "The Walking Dead" and already Rick Grimes is making the kind of maddeningly selfless decisions that, back when "Lost" was on the air, sometimes made us want to bonk Jack Shephard over the head with his backpack. His behavior in last night's episode, "Tell It to the Frogs," made for a great conversation-starter. In fact, I'm sure that many AMC viewers are currently having in-depth discussions about race relations, man's responsibility to his fellow man and how uncool it is when zombies have the audacity to snack on deer that -- hello? -- a hillbilly hunter just killed not five minutes ago. That said, the way Grimes handled a key decision during last night's zombie-pocalypse hour also drove me a little mad. For the rest of my rant regarding Grimes and his pesky, inconvenient conscience, continue reading....

By Jen Chaney  |  02:28 PM ET, 11/15/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV | Tags:  Walking Dead

Posted at 02:45 PM ET, 11/12/2010

A little zombie music to start your weekend

In what's either an attempt to get in the mood for Sunday's new "Walking Dead" episode or a clever attempt at social media marketing by AMC, the hashtag #zombielyrics has been making the rounds on Twitter today. And tweeters certainly have a flair for recrafting pop songs to make them more appropriate for the moaning, groaning, flesh-eating set. Here are some of my favorites so far: .bbpBox3159552547622912 {background:url(http://a1.twimg.com/profile_background_images/62248490/bacteria_smoking.jpg) #004477;padding:20px;} p.bbpTweet{background:#fff;padding:10px 12px 10px 12px;margin:0;min-height:48px;color:#000;font-size:18px !important;line-height:22px;-moz-border-radius:5px;-webkit-border-radius:5px} p.bbpTweet span.metadata{display:block;width:100%;clear:both;margin-top:8px;padding-top:12px;height:40px;border-top:1px solid #fff;border-top:1px solid #e6e6e6} p.bbpTweet span.metadata span.author{line-height:19px} p.bbpTweet span.metadata span.author img{float:left;margin:0 7px 0 0px;width:38px;height:38px} p.bbpTweet a:hover{text-decoration:underline}p.bbpTweet span.timestamp{font-size:12px;display:block} If you wanna eat my liver / you gotta get with my fiends / Make it last forever / Zombiehood never ends #ZombieLyrics #SpiceGhoulsless than a minute ago via TweetDeckPhil PlaitBadAstronomer .bbpBox3163473999564800 {background:url(http://a3.twimg.com/profile_background_images/123980745/Rainbow_starboard_exterior_under_sail_3.bmp) #C0DEED;padding:20px;} p.bbpTweet{background:#fff;padding:10px 12px 10px 12px;margin:0;min-height:48px;color:#000;font-size:18px !important;line-height:22px;-moz-border-radius:5px;-webkit-border-radius:5px} p.bbpTweet span.metadata{display:block;width:100%;clear:both;margin-top:8px;padding-top:12px;height:40px;border-top:1px solid #fff;border-top:1px solid #e6e6e6} p.bbpTweet span.metadata span.author{line-height:19px} p.bbpTweet span.metadata span.author img{float:left;margin:0 7px 0 0px;width:38px;height:38px} p.bbpTweet a:hover{text-decoration:underline}p.bbpTweet...

By Jen Chaney  |  02:45 PM ET, 11/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 12:18 PM ET, 11/10/2010

'Lake Shore': Canada's regrettable answer to 'Jersey Shore'

Canadians. So smug with their nationalized health care, bilingual province and "Anne of Green Gables." But, as it turns out, our neighbors to the north are every bit as capable of converting douchy 20-somethings into profit-making trash TV as we Yanks. Although it has yet to find a TV home a preview of "Lake Shore," Toronto's answer to "Jersey Shore," is causing a big time stir on the Interwebs since a preview reel was posted to YouTube late last week. (Some NSFW language, so watch at your own risk): Its hard to judge an entire show based on an eight minute clip -- which takes viewers through the auditions and introduces us to the eight person cast -- but "Lake Shore" seems to have out-trashed "Jersey Shore" by several orders of magnitude....

By Liz Kelly  |  12:18 PM ET, 11/10/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:14 AM ET, 11/08/2010

'Walking Dead' episode two: Five questions about 'Guts'

Caution: Spoilers ahead if you haven't yet watched "Guts." On most television shows, we rarely get the chance to see the rotting, drippy entrails of a human corpse draped across our protagonist's shoulders. But "Walking Dead" is different, dang it. As Sunday night's second episode -- appropriately titled "Guts" -- demonstrated, the team behind AMC's zombie-pocalypse drama has no problem spreading the viscera around. "Give me the axe," Deputy Sheriff Rick Grimes said while continuing to hack into that dead body that eventually became a disguise. "I need more guts." How very Dexter of him. While we enjoyed every ooky, suspenseful moment of watching Grimes and Glenn make their stanky attempt at escape -- Rain! Why didn't they come up with a plan B in case of rain?! -- last night's installment also raised a few questions in our minds. Join us and let's discuss....

By Jen Chaney and Liz Kelly  |  10:14 AM ET, 11/08/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 09:10 AM ET, 11/05/2010

William Shatner beats Gwyneth Paltrow to the '[Expletive] You' punch

Gwyneth Paltrow made headlines earlier this week when it was announced that she would lend her own insouciant interpretation of Cee-Lo Green's "[Expletive] You" (as a TV-friendly "Forget You") to "Glee" in an episode set to air later this month. But, clearly not concerned about stealing Paltrow's thunder, William Shatner turned up on "Lopez Tonight" on Wednesday to belt out his own rendition of the song in all its profane glory. It was, of course, heavily bleeped: No reaction yet from Camp Paltrow. And, really, I'm just posting this as an excuse to trot out one of my favorite clips ever -- Shatner's "interpretation" of "Rocket Man" from the 1978 Sci-Fi Awards show: Here's a link to Cee-Lo's unbleeped NSFW original. Related: Cee-Lo's dirty ditty goes viral, catches flak for profane lyrics...

By Liz Kelly  |  09:10 AM ET, 11/05/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 02:05 PM ET, 11/03/2010

A 'Mad Men' star sneaks onto 'Today'

Whatever happened to manners? That's the question that NBC correspondent Miguel Almaguer -- formerly of Washington's NBC 4 -- set out to answer in a segment for the "Today" show. In the process, as Entertainment Weekly noted, he ended up interviewing a former "Mad Men" regular ... but didn't identify him as such. Michael Gladis -- who starred as Paul Kinsey in the first three seasons of the AMC drama -- gets the simple tagline "customer." Watch. The whole thing goes down at the 1:49 mark. I mean, really, wouldn't it have been courteous to give Gladis a better title? Like, "Actor formerly known as Paul Kinsey"? Or "Dude who totally hooked up with Joan and gabbed too much about it"? Or "Resenter of Peggy Olson"? Something. On the plus side, I really look forward to the upcoming "Today" show segment that asks, "Are we too rude on the road?"...

By Jen Chaney  |  02:05 PM ET, 11/03/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV | Tags:  Mad Men

Posted at 08:28 AM ET, 11/02/2010

Conan O'Brien offers preview of 'Conan' with 'Show Zero'

We're now less than a week away from the premiere of "Conan," the new TBS talk show from Conan O'Brien that will easily be the most scrutinized piece of television ever to air on TBS. Well, besides that very special episode of "My Boys." As a way to give us all a sneak peek, last night O'Brien released "Show Zero" -- a four-minute-and-fifty-second dry run of his soon-to-be nightly comedy/gab fest -- on the Internet. What do you get in that exceedingly fast-paced clip? Let's see ... amazing video of a conference room, Conan band leader Jimmy Vivino playing a piccolo, a lame Facebook joke, Jim Parsons saying "It's nice to be here," several Diet Coke promotions, the band Steel Train playing a single chord and a dancing Taco. You know what? Maybe you should just watch yourself....

By Jen Chaney  |  08:28 AM ET, 11/02/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 02:30 PM ET, 10/29/2010

A new D.C.-set HBO adventure for Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Not content to settle with "30 Rock" cameos as the idealized Liz Lemon (see below), Julia Louis-Dreyfus has signed on with HBO to star in "Veep," a new sitcom in which she'll play the nation's first female vice president. The show will focus on Louis-Dreyfus's character -- fomer Sen. Selina Meyer -- who, according to Deadline.com, discovers being vice president is "nothing like she expected and everything everyone ever warned about." Hilarity, we assume, ensues. The show will be helmed by British writer-director Armando Iannucci, who launched a successful British political satire series, "The Thick of It," that spawned a 2009 feature film spinoff, "In the Loop," starring James Gandolfini. Louis-Dreyfus's last show, "The New Adventures of Old Christine," ended it's five-year run in May. But the "Seinfeld" alumna and, by the way, graduate of Bethesda's Holton-Arms School is already a familiar face at HBO where she spent a season...

By Liz Kelly  |  02:30 PM ET, 10/29/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 12:25 PM ET, 10/28/2010

Why Linus and, to a lesser extent, Lucy are the only members of the Peanuts gang to be trusted in 'It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown'

Forget Charlie Brown. Linus Van Pelt is the member of the Peanuts gang who puts up with the most unnecessary abuse. Just watch "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" -- which, as it happens, airs tonight at 8 p.m. on ABC -- and make a list of how many times the kid gets screamed at or called a blockhead or threatened with legal action simply because he chooses to spend his Halloween night in a pumpkin patch. Back in 1966, when this special first aired, they called that delusional. Now we'd probably laud Linus for being eco-conscious, getting back to nature and showing his support for the local food movement. Honestly, the only two Charles M. Schulz-created characters who can be trusted on any level in this half-hour animated classic are the Van Pelt children. Everyone else's behavior is borderline reprehensible....

By Jen Chaney  |  12:25 PM ET, 10/28/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 05:03 PM ET, 10/27/2010

Jon Hamm and Kenan Thompson bring the funny in new 'SNL' promos

Jon Hamm will be returning to "Saturday Night Live" for the third time to take on the hosting role this weekend. In the three promo clips embedded below, Hamm and Kenan Thompson make with the yuks. In the first, Hamm comforts a nervous Thompson with a friendly hug. The second has Thompson falsely giving his last name as "Swiss" in an attempt to make a "Hamm and Swiss" joke. It ends with Thompson yelling, "Well, you're not from Hamm, either!" The last involves a proposal. So, if you aren't spending Saturday night partying with your new Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear friends, here's a taste of what to expect:...

By Liz Kelly  |  05:03 PM ET, 10/27/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 06:01 AM ET, 10/23/2010

Pop culture pulse: Zombies invade your TV

It’s rare to see the undead on television. (Feel free to insert your own tasteless Larry King joke here.) But in the coming days, the airwaves will be ripe with zombie-viewing opportunities. “Dead Set” -- a five-part British series that somehow manages to smartly merge the concept of a zombie-pocalypse with the reality show “Big Brother” -- will air for the first time in the U.S. for five nights on IFC, beginning Monday. And next Sunday, on Halloween, AMC’s much-anticipated (and hyped) adaptation of the graphic novel “Walking Dead” makes its debut. Yes, thanks to the magic of television, now nearly every night can be a night of the living dead....

By Jen Chaney  |  06:01 AM ET, 10/23/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 05:07 PM ET, 10/21/2010

Who's on the first week of 'Conan'?

The lineup of celebrity guests for the first week of Conan O'Brien's TBS talk show was announced Thursday, with one notably open slot: the first guest. Voting to determine whom that will be is still underway at the Team Coco Web site. Jack Nicholson is running away with it right now, but there's still time to rally behind Thomas Pynchon, Vladimir Putin, REO Speedwagen or the cast of the "Fat Albert" movie. While that democratic process plays out, here's the rundown on who will hang with O'Brien during week one, assuming you don't feel like listening to the puppets explain in the video above: Monday, Nov. 8 : First Guest Poll winner, Seth Rogen and musical guest Jack White Tuesday, Nov. 9 : Tom Hanks, Jack McBrayer and musical guest Soundgarden Wednesday, Nov. 10: Jon Hamm, Charlyne Yi and musical guest Fistful of Mercy Thursday, Nov. 11: Michael Cera,...

By Jen Chaney  |  05:07 PM ET, 10/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV | Tags:  Conan O'Brien

Posted at 01:14 PM ET, 10/21/2010

'Jersey Shore' finale: Do we really need alligators?

The cast of MTV's "Jersey Shore." (Jeff Daly/PictureGroup) While the rest of the TV-watching world melts down about the sexy "Glee" GQ pix, let's talk about a show that embraces its trashiness: "Jersey Shore." Unlike Sunday's "Mad Men" finale, we likely won't be back tomorrow with a searching, academic dissection of the final hour of season two of "Jersey Shore" (otherwise known as "The Situation Does Miami"). Instead, we look ahead to one last hour of GTL, grenades, t-shirt time and smooshing. (Except we already know that taping has wrapped on season 3, set back in lovely Seaside Heights, N.J. and casting is underway for season 4. Not to mention possible spin-offs for Snooki and Pauly D.) Jarringly, the producers decided to mix things up for tonight's final episode -- sending Snooki and the rest of the gang on a trip to the Everglades for close encounters with alligators...

By Liz Kelly  |  01:14 PM ET, 10/21/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 11:55 AM ET, 10/18/2010

The 'Mad Men' finale: Who the heck is Megan?

"Who is Don Draper?" That question is so out. The of-the-moment "Mad Men" question -- and one we'll probably be asking for the next several months until the show returns to AMC in 2011 -- is "Who the hell is Megan?"

By Jen Chaney  |  11:55 AM ET, 10/18/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV | Tags:  Mad Men

Posted at 02:00 PM ET, 10/17/2010

The 'Mad Men' season finale: Is another death on the horizon?

Don Draper, a man whose lucky strikes are running out. (AMC) The fourth season of "Mad Men" comes to a close tonight. After watching a dozen episodes in which, among other things, Don Draper struggled not to dip completely into depression, Joan may (or may not) have aborted a baby she conceived with Roger and a few people have kicked the bucket (RIP Mrs. Blankenship), it seems like the conclusion may drop one or two bombshells. And if some of the theories floating around the Internet right now are to be believed, that could mean more death....

By Jen Chaney  |  02:00 PM ET, 10/17/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 09:43 AM ET, 10/15/2010

Spot the '30 Rock' live show differences

As noted by the Post's Hank Stuever in his review, the live episode of "30 Rock" ran pretty smoothly last night on the East Coast. And apparently the West Coast version had even fewer hitches. Want to know for sure? Watch each episode below and compare. New York Magazine's Vulture blog already found 17 differences between the two versions. Can you find more? Can you spot the differences? (For even more video clips, check out our TV blog.) TweetNote additional discrepancies (or just marvel at Jon Hamm's fake-hand awesomeness) by posting a comment or tweeting the differences you saw, using the hashtag #30rockdifferences....

By Jen Chaney  |  09:43 AM ET, 10/15/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 08:07 AM ET, 10/14/2010

Conan O'Brien debuts explosive new promo for TBS show

In a new promo for his upcoming TBS debut, Conan O'Brien drives an explosives-fireworks-popcorn-packed 1969 Dodge Dart off a 900-foot cliff while a chamber orchestra plays live in the background. According to Deadline.com, the promo was directed by Bryan Buckley, who "has helmed some 3 dozen Super Bowl commercials, including the 2009 Bud Light spot starring Conan." Well done. Top this, Jay Leno. Source: Deadline.com...

By Liz Kelly  |  08:07 AM ET, 10/14/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:40 AM ET, 10/12/2010

Andy Richter rejoins Conan O'Brien for TBS show

Richter (right) and O'Brien in the good old NBC days. (NBC) Longtime (and long gone) sidekick Andy Richter will be returning to his rightful spot at Conan O'Brien's side when O'Brien makes his TBS debut on Nov. 8. In a press release, TBS touted the pair's chemistry: A collaboration that began Sept. 13, 1993, O’Brien and Richter have developed a comedic chemistry that few performers have achieved. Through two late-night franchises and the recently concluded The Legally Prohibited from Being Funny on Television Tour, Richter has been a consistent asset to O’Brien. The release continues with some appropriately flip quotes from Richter: "I'm thrilled to be going back to work with Conan, and very excited to start a whole new venture on TBS. However, I am mostly looking forward to getting out of the house again.” And O'Brien: "This decision was made without my authority. I will get to...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:40 AM ET, 10/12/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 01:16 PM ET, 10/07/2010

From GTL to grenades: A 'Jersey Shore' glossary

'Jersey Shore's' cast (back row, from left): The Situation, Vinny, Pauly D, J-WOWW, Angelina. (front row, from let): Snooki, Sammi, Ronnie. "Jersey Shore" is far more important than any of us realized. Unlike MTV's slowly ossifying "Real World" series or even the over-scripted melodrama of Bravo's "Real Housewives" franchise, "Jersey Shore" is genuine. Or as genuine as a show about men with fake tans and women with hair extensions (and their own fake tans) can be. The show is, as they say, a phenomenon. With season 2 underway and filming of season 3 already wrapped, it would seem that Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi, Jenni "J-WOWW" Farley, "DJ Pauly D" DelVecchio, Vinny Guadagnino, Ronnie Ortiz-Magro, Sammi "Sweetheart" Giancola, Angelina Pivarnick and Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino have successfully made the leap from cable obscurity to full-on pop culture street cred. For proof, look no further than ABC, where "The Situation" continues to...

By Liz Kelly  |  01:16 PM ET, 10/07/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 03:18 PM ET, 10/01/2010

'A-Team' creator Stephen J. Cannell dead

Stephen J. Cannell in 2006. (AP) Could this week get any deathier? Stephen J. Cannell -- creator of juggernaut TV shows, from "The A-Team" to "21 Jump Street" -- has died of complications from melanoma, becoming only the latest in a series of high profile deaths this week, including actor Tony Curtis, comedian Greg Giraldo, director Arthur Penn and actress Gloria Stuart. Cannell started out as a writer on "Columbo" and "Adam-12" before evolving into a producer. He created (according to Wikipedia) nearly 40 television series with credits including "The Rockford Files," the afore-mentioned "21 Jump Street" (where a guy named Johnny Depp got his start), "Wiseguy" and "The Greatest American Hero," to name just a few. He also acted, and most recently appeared as himself on "Castle" as one of Castle's poker buddies (along with writers James Patterson and Michael Connelly). In addition to his TV credits, Cannell...

By Liz Kelly  |  03:18 PM ET, 10/01/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
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Posted at 08:40 AM ET, 09/30/2010

Kaley Cuoco and Johnny Galecki of 'Big Bang Theory': Secret lovers?

Kaley Cuoco has admitted that she and Johnny Galecki -- who play hot-girl-meets-geek lovers on "The Big Bang Theory" -- secretly dated for two years. In an interview with CBS Watch magazine, she opens up about the relationship, which she says the two committed to keeping under wraps. "It was a wonderful relationship but we never spoke a word about it and never went anywhere together," she tells the network publication. "We were so protective of ourselves and the show and didn’t want anything to ruin that. But that also made it sad, too. That’s not the kind of relationship I want -- I don’t want to be hiding. We couldn’t do anything. It wasn’t as fun as we wanted it to be. Everyone was always asking, and we deny-deny-denied." Cuoco implies that other people connected with the show preferred that the two not share their real-life romantic feelings...

By Jen Chaney  |  08:40 AM ET, 09/30/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV, TV

Posted at 04:50 PM ET, 09/26/2010

Katy Perry on SNL: Sticking it to 'Sesame Street'

Katy Perry was the musical guest on the premiere of "Saturday Night Live," but of course she couldn't let the evening pass without taking aim at her recent "Sesame Street" controversy. During the "Bronx Beat" segment -- which reunited host Amy Poehler and former cast member Maya Rudolph in a reprise of one of their regular sketches -- Perry played a suddenly developed young library employee who just so happened to be wearing a tight-fitting Elmo T-shirt while bouncing around repeatedly in her seat. The subtext: "You want to remove me from the broadcast of a children's show for allegedly wearing inappropriate clothes? Fine. Let me show you how to get to real cleavage, 'Sesame Street.'" Well played, Ms. Perry....

By Jen Chaneuy  |  04:50 PM ET, 09/26/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 04:45 PM ET, 09/16/2010

Tim Gunn takes aim at the Salahis

When it comes to Tareq and Michaele Salahi, Tim Gunn of "Project Runway" doesn't mince words. In an appearance earlier today on "Access Hollywood Live," he was asked what he thought about the White House party crashers/reality stars -- while, I might add, the Salahis were both listening via satellite and waiting for their turn to be interviewed. His response: "I don’t mind if the Salahis hear this -- I believe that they are sociopaths. They believe their own lies. When you’re dealing with a sociopath, you can’t reason. You can’t deal with logic. … They do believe their own lies in my view.” He also cast more than a little doubt on the "Real Housewives of D.C." star's recent revelation that she suffers from multiple sclerosis. “I would never wish MS upon anyone. And if in fact Michaele has MS, I feel very bad for her. I have a...

By Jen Chaney  |  04:45 PM ET, 09/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 11:05 AM ET, 09/01/2010

Conan O'Brien's TBS show to be called ... 'Conan'

Conan O'Brien's triumphant return to television finally has a name, and it's ... "Conan." Yes, as Mr. O'Brien reveals in the video below, he's following the "keep it simple, stupid" model and going with "Conan" as the name of his TBS show, which debuts in November. No word on whether, as The Hollywood Reporter contends, this name violates a trademark owned by Conan Properties. Hopefully it doesn't. The last thing O'Brien needs is legal trouble. (Update: the Post's Lisa de Moraes also shared this news and suggests the name has been cleared for use.) What do you think of the name? Weigh in with a comment or vote in our poll:...

By Jen Chaney  |  11:05 AM ET, 09/01/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV | Tags:  Conan O'Brien

Posted at 03:58 PM ET, 08/24/2010

A look at the 'Walking Dead' preview

The trailer for AMC's "Walking Dead" -- essentially the same one that sent Comic-Con attendees into rapturous zombie glee in San Diego last month -- is now online, courtesy of the Hollywood Reporter's Live Feed blog (and with some NSFW language). I'll let the post-apocalyptic awesomeness speak for itself. But before I do, know that the series debuts Oct. 31. Which means you may want to cancel your Halloween plans, or at least set the DVR....

By Jen Chaney  |  03:58 PM ET, 08/24/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV, TV

Posted at 03:52 PM ET, 08/16/2010

'Mad Men': Who was this week's empowered heroine -- Allison or Peggy?

Peggy Olson -- proud copywriter for Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce and a woman largely succeeding every day at a man's game -- broke away from her suit-and-tied work environment to hang out with some '60s-era counter-cultural hipsters during Sunday's episode of "Mad Men." Is this just one more reason why Peggy is, as Popeater contends, "the real 'Mad Men' heroine"? While I admire Peggy for a number of reasons, I'd say our Miss Olson still has some baggage to deal with before she can fully emerge as a bona fide heroine. In fact, based solely on the events that transpired in this most recent "Mad Men" installment (title: "The Rejected"), I'd say the real heroine of the show is Allison, Don Draper's now former secretary (and one-night stand) and a woman who -- as the video above demonstrates -- isn't afraid to throw an incredibly heavy cigarette dispenser at...

By Jen Chaney  |  03:52 PM ET, 08/16/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV | Tags:  Mad Men

Posted at 03:15 PM ET, 07/13/2010

'The Hills' heads for the hills

"The Hills" -- an MTV reality series that served as such a significant public service that, frankly, I never understood why it didn't air on PBS -- comes to a close tonight after six much-celebrated seasons. Undoubtedly, hardcore "Hills" fans will host viewing parties tonight, where they willl dress up as Heidi Montag -- both the pre-plastic surgery version and the post -- while sipping on cocktails with names like the Justin-Bobby Gin Fizz and Sex on Laguna Beach. How will the series come to a close? Is there any chance it will turn out that all the people on this show have been dead for all or part of the past several years? And if that is how it ends, how to explain Spencer Pratt's Twitter feed? (But seriously: how does one explain Spencer Pratt's Twitter feed?) We don't know how it will all wrap up. So the best...

By Jen Chaney  |  03:15 PM ET, 07/13/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 11:10 AM ET, 06/29/2010

Can 'The Office' go on without Steve Carell?

Steve Carell has previously implied that he plans to depart "The Office" at the end of next season. Now the man who plays America's most lovable donkey of a boss has confirmed that he will indeed leave Michael Scott behind in 2011. And that means no more of this: Or this: Or this: Can "The Office" continue without the nimrod who stands at its dysfunctional paper company center? According to The Wrap, NBC has a plan in place in the event of Carell's departure, a plan that, of course, they have not shared. (Sounds a little Michael Scott-esque, doesn't it?) Reps also note that "The Office" is an ensemble show so the loss of a single character, albeit a significant one, isn't necessarily a death knell. Ensemble though it may be, one assumes that with no Michael, another character might step up and play a more central role. Who might...

By Jen Chaney  |  11:10 AM ET, 06/29/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 10:41 AM ET, 03/04/2010

'Jersey Shore's' big brains take on Jay Leno

Not even the cast of "Jersey Shore" can make Jay Leno funny. Last night, the re-vivified "Tonight Show with Jay Leno" spent six long minutes trying to wring laughs from MTV's Guidos and Guidettes in a Jeopardy-like "Battle of the Celebrity All-Stars" segment: Can't watch at work? Here's what you're missing. -- Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi (the one with the big hair bump) is unable to complete this book title: "Catcher in the _____." (Her reply: "closet.") -- Muscle-bound brawler Ronnie Ortiz-Magro names Puerto Rico as the country's 50th state. -- Sammi "Sweetheart" Giancola isn't able to answer any questions, but damn if her hair extensions don't look perfect. -- Ronnie incorrectly identifies Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown's nude Cosmo spread as a young Jay Leno. Only Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino appears to possess a brain not fake-tanned into catatonia, correctly identifying a photo of Fed chairman Ben Bernanke. And after spoofing...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:41 AM ET, 03/04/2010 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 02:09 PM ET, 12/18/2009

Timeline: From 'Jon & Kate' to separate lives

Jon and Kate Gosselin in happier times. (AP/TLC) Today a Pennsylvania judge granted Jon and Kate Gosselin a divorce, capping off a whirlwind year of ratings (and personal) ups-and-downs for the couple. How did we get here from there? Allow the timeline below to explain. June 12, 1999 -- Jon and Kate Gosselin marry. October 8, 2000 -- Kate gives birth to twins Cara and Madelyn. May 10, 2004 -- Following fertility treatment, Kate gives birth to sextuplets Alexis Faith, Hannah Joy, Aaden Jonathan, Collin Thomas, Leah Hope and Joel Kevin. Sept. 2005 -- Discovery channel airs the first of two one-hour specials about the Gosselin family. April 2007 -- "Jon & Kate Plus 8" begins its series run on Discovery, later moving to TLC. 2009 April -- Kate releases her book, "Eight Little Faces," and embarks on book tour. April -- Tabloid reports surface linking Jon to various...

By Liz Kelly  |  02:09 PM ET, 12/18/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:51 AM ET, 11/24/2009

Will Jon & Kate really go away?

Jon and Kate Gosselin in happier times, before being chewed up and spat out by the reality show wringer. (Photo courtesy TLC) This week we have something for which to be truly thankful: The end of "Jon & Kate," though possibly not an immediate end to Jon Gosselin and Kate Gosselin as well-worn headline fodder. If the 15 minutes of fame for these estranged parents of eight follows a logical trajectory, the absence of a regularly airing TV show and an army of TLC publicists should cut off most of the blood supply to the couple's fame. Meaning that a year from now they'll be footnotes, with news of Jon's latest exploits falling somewhere just below the misadventures of Joe Francis or Octomom Nadya Suleman. Having said that (and you Larry David fans know whereof I speak), it is equally likely that both Jon and Kate Gosselin -- in...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:51 AM ET, 11/24/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 11:59 AM ET, 06/18/2009

Ann Curry, Hard News Hold Out?

Suddenly NBC second-stringer Ann Curry -- she of the sycophantic Brangelina interviews -- has been cast in the role of a crusading hard newswoman who bravely defies the dumbing down of news by insisting on covering "credible" news like Iran and Darfur rather than give in and start following the Britney beat. Or so Curry, the New York Observer and New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof would have us believe. Curry says she would never stoop to cover a story of, say, a topless Britney Spears caught shoplifting (a hypothetical) and blames average Americans for our insatiable appetite for tabloid journalism. From the Observer's coverage of a conference attended by Curry on how Twitter is affecting the news biz (linked above): "The reason I have to fight every time to do these stories is because the truth is that it's hard to get the majority of Americans or even a...

By Liz Kelly  |  11:59 AM ET, 06/18/2009 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 11:03 AM ET, 06/26/2008

Undressing 'The Bachelorette'

You know you're a fan of "The Bachelorette" if: 1. You slug a drink every time the word "journey" is uttered. 2. You roll your eyes every time Bachelorette DeAnna Pappas, a real estate agent from Newnan, Georgia, lauds a guy for "putting himself out there." 3. You slump in your chair when DeAnna bemoans how "I've gone through what you're going through." 4. You understand there's nothing else to watch this summer. If you selected No. 4, let's catch you up. DeAnna Pappas: Sweet catch or fishy dish? (Craig Sjodin/ABC) For those just joining us: After "Bachelor" Brad Womack's straight-arm at the altar grounded her in last season's finale, Pappas was given "a second chance at love" by becoming the rose-pinning hunter instead of the doe-eyed hunted. Since then, Pappas has dismissed 22 of her suitors with teary-eyed precision, from dropping Richard the Science Guy on the corner after...

By Christian Pelusi  |  11:03 AM ET, 06/26/2008 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:42 AM ET, 04/09/2008

Reality Check: 'Rock of Love 2'

As we enter the final few days before Sunday's "Rock of Love 2" finale, I just can't go on sitting idly by, not comment, as I watch this season surpass the first. No mean feat considering the machinations of stripper/chief head-tripper Heather and the reliably ill-spirited Lacey. (If you haven't watched up to Sunday's most recent show, please direct your attention to Post Rock for the latest in actual rock MUSIC.) Beware: There are spoilers here. After Destiney's dismissal on Sunday night, our '80s hair band bachelor, Bret Michaels, is down to a surf-inflected silicon-injected stripper (Daisy) and "TV hostess" Ambre, who somehow seems out of place not only in this show, but in her "my first skank groupie" outfits. Ultimately, one will win. But I'm here to say that we, the viewers, are the real winners. No matter who ends up rocking Bret's world ultimately, aren't we all just...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:42 AM ET, 04/09/2008 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
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Posted at 10:42 AM ET, 04/08/2008

Insta-Poll: Rating Kathie Lee's Return

Kathie Lee Gifford (right) goes for it by making one of her signature faces on day one of her new 'Today' hosting gig. Co-host Hoda Kotb wisely keeps her face hidden. (AP) The television landscape is littered with second acts. Like so many wet spaghetti noodles thrown against the wall, some slide (Tony Danza, Donny Osmond, Maury Povich and Connie Chung) while others manage to hang on long enough carve out a new career (Ellen DeGeneres, Howie Mandel). Will Kathie Lee Gifford stick or slide? As Tom Shales so eloquently put it in this morning's Style critique, Gifford's return to daytime TV as host of the fourth hour of the "Today" show was "a windy, dithery mess with virtually no portents of improvements to come." Did we expect any more from the woman who mad-libbed her way through 15 years as Regis Philbin's mouthy, face-making, sweat shop-enabling appendage? Probably...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:42 AM ET, 04/08/2008 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 08/28/2007

Prognosticating 'Dancing With the Stars'

Update, 8.29.07: Looks like our pick for winner -- Nia Peeples -- won't get the chance to show her stuff on the dance floor. At least not this season. This morning, ABC officially announced this year's contestants: Melanie Brown, Sabrina Bryan, Helio Castroneves, Mark Cuban, Jennie Garth, Josie Maran, Cameron Mathison, Floyd Mayweather, Wayne Newton, Marie Osmond, Albert Reed and Jane Seymour. Hey, six-and-a-half (we had Sabrina Ryan) ain't bad. -------------- '90210' alumna Tori Spelling: She can dance if she wants to. (Reuters) Fake tans, big hair, glitzy outfits, hammy performances and cheesy reworked tunes -- somehow this combination of abhorrent qualities combines to form the near perfection that is "Dancing With the Stars." Against my will, I've been entertained by the last few seasons of this plucky little ABC show that pits fading stars against each other in a dance-off worthy of "West Side Story" or "Dirty Dancing." ("Nobody...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:43 AM ET, 08/28/2007 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 08/16/2007

To Care or Not To Care: 'The Hills'

Lauren Conrad and Heidi Montag. (Getty Images) For the past week or so, the usual list of sites I troll has been awash in stories about the stars of MTV's semi-reality show, "The Hills." As usual, I've been ignoring them. But this morning, when scanning a blurb about "Hills"-ster Lauren Conrad saying a post-breast-augmentation co-star Heidi Montag is "not the same person anymore ... I feel like I don't even know [her]," I felt a twinge and started to doubt my "Hills" shut out. This, I thought, is good stuff ("good stuff" meaning, loosely, just the kind of vapid trash to which I tend to gravitate). Conrad's quote about sums it up for me, though. I don't feel like I know her or Heidi or any of the "Hills" kids (nor did I care to know anyone on the show's predecessor "Laguna Beach"). Until now, when I found myself...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:43 AM ET, 08/16/2007 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 04/27/2007

Friday List: Rosie's Replacement?

A "View" without Rosie O'Donnell is like a hot dog without mustard. Hmm. Or perhaps, it's like Pam Anderson without implants. No, that's not quite right either. I've got it: "The View" without Rosie O'Donnell is like a sedate, estrogen-dominated yawnfest without a perky lesbian known for speaking her mind. In other words, it's about to get boring again. Earlier this week, O'Donnell, citing unsuccessful contract negotiations with ABC, said she'll be leaving the confines of the coffee klatch in June. Barbara Walters struck an appropriately wistful tone, saying she felt bad for dragging O'Donnell back to TV in the first place. Joy Behar stuck with her well-worn post-menopausal arch pose, wondering how Donald Trump would get any press without Rosie around to kick. And Elizabeth Hasselbeck, who over the eight months she's sat across from O'Donnell has become something of a right-wing nemesis, managed to look smug, triumphant and...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:43 AM ET, 04/27/2007 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 11:20 AM ET, 04/25/2007

Timeline: A Brief Compendium of Rosie Quotes

Rosie O'Donnell (left) with fellow 'View'-sters Barbara Walters, Joy Behar and Elizabeth Hasselbeck. (AP) Despite early success as a stand-up comic, a respectable resume of big-screen supporting roles ("A League of Their Own," "Sleepless in Seattle"), a possible future on FX's "Nip/Tuck" and duty at the helm of two daytime talk shows, Rosie O'Donnell's propensity for speaking her mind has garnered her the most attention throughout her career. Following this morning's announcement of a planned exit from "The View," we pause to replay a few choice words from the mouth from Queens: 1999: "You are not allowed to own a gun, and if you do own a gun, I think you should go to prison." O'Donnell's outspoken anti-gun stance landed her in an on-screen imbroglio with actor Tom Selleck, who claims O'Donnell broke an agreement to not talk about his affiliation with the NRA. Nov. 20, 2006: "To me...

By Liz Kelly  |  11:20 AM ET, 04/25/2007 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
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Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 04/25/2007

A Very Special Goodbye: TV Exits

Parting is such sweet sorrow, yet this ever-changing world in which we live in demands that we learn to say goodbye to our real friends -- the ones who turn out for us every week on TV -- far too often. With the explosion of reality TV shows, we are traumatized weekly by abrupt adieus. We hardly had time to clear a corner of our crowded hearts for adorable pixie Sanjaya Malakar before he was brutally excised from "American Idol" and condemned to the wraith-like fate of other reality show also-rans. All that remains is his name (which has taken on a Borat-like shorthand meaning "nerdy, gawky, fearless teen, a bit cooler than Napoleon Dynamite, but not so hip as to alienate grandparents") and a reputation as "the guy with the hair." Heather Mills and 'Dancing' partner Jonathan Roberts. (AP) Last night it was Heather Mills -- the woman who...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:43 AM ET, 04/25/2007 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
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Posted at 10:23 AM ET, 03/20/2007

Reality Check: 'Dancing With the Stars'

Heather Mills and partner Jonathan Roberts, who didn't bother coordinating their outfits. (Photo courtesy ABC) If "Dancing With the Stars" hadn't debuted last night, I might have been tempted to write about this site. But ABC's wacky dance-off did return and gets our full attention today. Though, after watching the two-hour premiere, I'm thinking that site might have more entertainment value. Even a soon-to-be ex-Beatle bride sporting an artificial leg (surely ratings gold) wasn't enough to keep the show from tedium. Easy-listening covers of already cheesy songs (Huey Lewis's "The Power of Love," Denise Williams's "Let's Hear It for the Boy") and annoying bio-clips of each contestant and professional dancer didn't do much to ramp up the excitement level. Dancers were upstaged by over-the-top judge Bruno Tonioli (an Italian choreographer doing his best impression of Armand Goldman) and the entire show was eclipsed by the commercial break premiere of...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:23 AM ET, 03/20/2007 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:41 AM ET, 01/22/2007

The Great American Pastime: Fallen Idols

Late last week, news broke that "American Idol" hopeful Thomas Daniels has a -- gasp! -- past. Who? For those who watched, you'll remember Daniels as contestant no. 81045 -- the 22-year-old guy with an with an afro, easy smile and tweed jacket who, before wowing judges with his rendition of Amos Lee's "Arms of a Woman," says he slept behind a dumpster. If you didn't watch, think of him as the one who was not a complete freak. Take a second and watch his initial "Idol" appearance: His audition falling roughly somewhere between an albino Bettie Page badly in need of new bra and several sociopathic Napoleon Dynamites with disconcerting voices and stalker potential, Daniels stood out not only as the kind of guy who might just go the distance, but the perfect antidote to last season's winner, Taylor Hicks. Then, on Friday, TMZ.com -- the AOL-backed site specializing...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:41 AM ET, 01/22/2007 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 01/17/2007

Reality Check: B-List Stars Joining the Fray

The Diceman cometh... again. (Photo courtesy VH1) With "Flavor of Love" drawing monster ratings, it's no surprise that production companies are saturating the airwaves with even more burnt-out stars living their lives or thrown into unlikely situations. Below, a handful of new offerings: Armed & Famous Post TV critic Tom Shales describes CBS's attempt to horn in on the celeb-reality game thusly: "The show, which exists mainly to be ridiculed, features five feeble excuses for stars pretending to learn how to pretend to be policemen on the Muncie force." Those five feeble excuses, by the way, are Jack Osbourne (Ozzy's son), Jason "Wee-Man" Acuna ("Jackass"), Trish Stratus (pro wrestler), LaToya Jackson (questionable) and Erik Estrada ("CHiPs"). (Airing now on CBS) Shooting Sizemore Well, it's about time someone turned a junkie's home movies into a series. The premise: Character actor Tom Sizemore ("Saving Private Ryan," "Black Hawk Down") tries to...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:43 AM ET, 01/17/2007 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:45 AM ET, 09/14/2006

Reality Check

We're at kind of a crossroads, reality show-wise, so I thought it might be a good idea to check in on a few and take your pulse about what's worth watching. We'll start with the few I'm currently somewhat up on: Lukas Rossi, one lucky son of a "Headspin"-inspiring mommy. (Getty Images) Rock Star: Supernova As I wrote last week, this is my favorite. That is, until it ended last night with the boneheaded "band" picking Lukas Rossi (aka Chaka) to front their re-branded two-month tour. Evs. In any case, it's all over now, but the show returns next summer for an all femme competition. (Note to self: Start singing lessons and piercings now.) Does this bow tie go with heels? (AP) Dancing With The Stars As is the case with many of these celeb-studded shows, "star" is a loose term used to describe anyone from a faded talkshow host...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:45 AM ET, 09/14/2006 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
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Posted at 11:52 AM ET, 08/30/2006

Perfect Pitch: Celebrity Duets

As a child of the 70s, I was privileged to live in the era of the variety show. Sonny and Cher, the Mandrell sisters, Donnie and Marie Osmond, "Hee-Haw," Sha-Na-Na, the Muppets -- even the Brady Bunch -- all jostled one another for the primetime viewers by unleashing a cavalcade of fading stars and corny skits to us on an almost nightly basis. And guess what kids, there was no cable so it was Donnie and Marie hamming it up with Ruth Buzzi or -- bummer -- back to the Spirograph or, heavens forbid, a book. Singer Cheech Marin. (Photo Courtesy Fox Broadcasting) So it was no surprise last night when former variety show queen (and current disturbing doll designer) Marie Osmond herself declared that television variety is back. And so it is, as a somewhat predictable off-shoot from the celeb-reality tree. It was only a matter of time before...

By Liz Kelly  |  11:52 AM ET, 08/30/2006 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV

Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 08/24/2006

'Survivor's' Dis-Integration

We may not live in an era with a snazzy moniker like "Enlightenment" or "Rennaissance" or even "Industrial Revolution," but at least we can say we were around for the decline of Western civilization. There is no clearer harbinger of the end times than the avalanche of reality shows jockeying for our scant TV viewing attention -- from "Extreme Makeover's" Frankensteinish reinvention of average Joes and Jills to the intimate peeks inside soon-to-fail celebrity marriages to unapologetic teens squandering their parents' disposable income on Sweet 16 parties to adults who will eat bugs or face extreme danger for the opportunity to one day evade taxes -- our society reached its acme sometime in the mid-70s. We are Caligula at this point. Me, I'm tempted to crawl into a fetal position with my Betamax and watch the glory days of TV -- you know, "Alice," "Falcon Crest," "The Brady Bunch" (that...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:43 AM ET, 08/24/2006 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 10:48 AM ET, 08/21/2006

K-Fed Up With the Teen Choice Awards

A decade and a half away from my teenage years, I am not ashamed to say that I thoroughly enjoyed watching last night's Teen Choice Awards. And by "thoroughly enjoyed" I mean an evening spent engaging in adolescent-style criticisms and witticisms about the entire production, ably assisted by my equally juvenile husband. Confession: As K-Fed performed I wished that Ludacris and Snoop Dogg would suddenly spring onto the stage, ninja style, and lock him in his piano. (AP) Still, some things about the show remain cryptic to my age-addled brain. No doubt there were parts of the production understood only by consumer culture drones between the ages of 13 - 19. Perhaps some teen, or the parent of a teen, can answer my lingering questions from last night's show: 1. Why was there a hot tub full of girls on the corner of the stage? I have to admit I...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:48 AM ET, 08/21/2006 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV, TV

Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 06/29/2006

A "View" I Could Do Without

If we weren't already in the midst of a very important vote here at Celebritology, I'd be tempted to offer another poll asking the burning questions arising out of all this Star Jones Reynolds/"View" fallout: Who cares? Who watches "The View?" And can the rest of this shrewish coven go away along with Jones Reynolds? The "View" crew in happier days -- February. (AP) To quickly recap for those of you lucky enough to have missed this: In April, Meredith Vieira announces she's leaving "The View" to co-host NBC's "Today." Soon after, ABC announces Rosie O'Donnell will take over Vieira's empty chair on "The View." Rumor has it Rosie wants Star gone by the time she arrives in September. Executive producer Barbara Walters denies this or any other changes to the lineup and the morning gabfest returns to normal (or as normal as it can be considering the show's inane...

By Liz Kelly  |  10:43 AM ET, 06/29/2006 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Categories:  TV