Archive for January, 2008

Reality Wrap Up – 25JAN08

Here is a recap of the reality shows I watched this week.  There is just so much TV, and so little time. 

The Amazing RaceSeason 12 Finale. TK and Rachel made it to the finish line first and won a cool million.  I have to say this season was a little dull because there were no Jonathon’s, Rob’s, or Alison’s to despise.  All the teams were pretty decent, with occasional b**chy moments.  Ronald was too hard on Christina for most of the race, but he settled down by the end.  Jennifer was mean to Nate, but I think he liked it, so who am I to judge?  TK and Rachel were mellow through the game.  I think Rachel only had one break down when she had to milk a camel.  She lost it when she realized it was boy camel.  They definitely prove that you don’t have to freak out and become a raving lunatic attacking innocent taxi drivers to win.   Congrats you two – most excellent.

 The Amazing Race - Season 12 Finale. TK and Rachel

American Idol – San Diego Auditions.  The few notable auditions included Valerie Reyes, who is Mariah Carey’s biggest fan and thought she could do the songstress proud.  Uh, not so much.  I laughed out loud when realization set in for Valerie and she said “oh my God, now I’m going to be one of the bad auditions.” At least she still has one foot planted firmly in reality. A surprisingly good audition was given by David Archuleta.  He’s only 16, but has already experienced highs and lows in during his short career, including vocal paralysis.  He seems to have recovered though because he sounded great.

David Archuleta American Idol

Biggest Loser – The house votes for a second team in the elimination room, Paul and Kelly.  Instead of going home, the yellow team must compete with the rest of the house. The other teams combine their weight lose and must have a higher percentage of weight lose to send Paul and Kelly home.  Or, Paul and Kelly can send one team packing. Before the weigh in, alliances are formed and the orange, blue and purple teams kept the team weight loss down.

American Idol – Charleston Auditions. Another Idol baby!  Oliver Highman was preparing to audition when his wife went into labor and they rushed off to find a hospital.  He made it back just in time to sing for the judges.  He didn’t make it through, but what a story to tell his baby girl.  Another couple will have an interesting story to tell their little ones.  Crystal Ortiz and Randy Stark met on the Idol web board and fell in love.  They auditioned together and while they didn’t make sweet music together, there may be a happy ending.    

American Idol – Charleston Auditions. Another Idol baby!  Oliver Highman

Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency – Janice declares the agency is fur free and brings PeTA in to show gruesome videos. The models are motivated to join in a protest on Hollywood Blvd. They strip down to underwear and Brian Kehoe moons the cops.  Janice then goes in for a tummy tuck. 

Crowned – Questions and Answers.  The girls have to host a party and display their charms. The surprise guests are all the men in their lives so the women are more charming then usual.  They then have to charm the judges during an interview.  Hollis and Gina do really well because they’re so earnest and energetic.   

Gina and Hollis Crowned

 Project Runway – The designers have to create a look using Levis.  Rami finally does a different dress using different fabrics.  Ricky finally impressed the judges but not his competition. Christian is annoyed the Ricky is still around but Kit was eliminated.  Christian just likes to talk a lot of smack.


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Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency – Alexis Hutt

For those of you who remember Janice Dickinson when she was a judge for America’s Next Top Model, you know how brutal she can be.  She left Tyra’s shadow to open a modeling agency in LA and has all the drama filmed for the reality TV show, Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency.  Janice is still outspoken, uncensored and bitchy; but we also get to see a more vulnerable side.   

Janice is THE boss from hell, but she is also very maternal and protective of her models. It’s a strange mix, but I really do respect the way she spoke to Alexis Hutt. Alexis is a new model with the agency and from the first casting, she had scars, burns and bruises all over her body. Janice asked her on day one if she was a cutter, and Alexis denied it.  Her excuse for all the injuries was being a “Tom Boy” from the sticks. 

Alexis Hutt

The issue came up again at a swimsuit shoot, and Alexis claimed to have been in a car accident. Until Janice got right in her face as told her to ask if she needed help.   Alexis confessed she did cut when was a young teenager, saying “Sometimes children don’t know how to handle the trauma that happened in their life.”  Janice said her own father was a bad guy, a pedophile who molested Janice’s sister. Janice got tough to deal with her past, and now Alexis needs to work her way through it. It’s so sad to see such a shy, pretty girl hurting herself, replacing the hurt she’s experienced all her life.    

According to Cool Nurse  “…self-injury seems to function as a coping mechanism. “Cutters” use self-harm to feel calm, “in control,” or just to “feel something.”  However, self-injury is not a healthy coping mechanism – it is a self-destructive behavior that probably reflects deeper, more complicated mental health or personal problems.”

 This may be one of the most personal and important revelations to be seen on a reality TV show.  Others girls, who have thought they’re alone will see Alexis and know they’re not. I hope Alexis is able to confront the issues that haunt her and maybe even speak about her struggles someday.   Here are few resources for those interested in learning more or seeking help: 

1-800 DON’T-CUT (800-366-8288) 

What is Self Injury site devoted to understanding Self Injury, causes and treatments.

Web Board to talk with others, share and seek help.

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American Idol Season 7

A new season of American Idol  begins January 15, 2008. I can hardly wait; especially the first few weeks when we get to see the auditions.

I have to admit, I do feel bad for some of the contestants when they hear Simon Cowell’s scathing remarks. After six seasons, you would think they would know what to expect. I love how his new catch phrase is “Not to be rude, but…” and then he’ll say “….You look like a bush baby.” How exactly is that NOT rude?

According to Simon Cowell, “There’s more personality, better stories (and) it’s a better year.” Better than Season 6, which gave us Jordin Sparks and Blake Lewis, not to mention the walking hair do called Sanjaya? That’s hard to believe, but when I look back I see that I love each seasons’ contestants more than the ones before.

Speaking of previous seasons’ contestants, what ever happened to…?

Kelly Clarkson (Winner Season 1) – After a bitter battle with her recording company, everybody made nice and Miss Independent released a new album My December and has been nominated for a 2008 Grammy

Justin Guarini (Runner Up Season 1) – Released an album in 2006: Stranger Things Have Happened and has appeared in various television and movie projects. Amazing after the dismal performance in From Justin to Kelly

Ryan Starr (Season 1) – Even though she finished 7th, she’s been voted one of the sexiest reality TV stars and used what her mama gave her to extend her career, with calendar, TV guest shots and even appearing on Season 3 of the Surreal Life.

Ruben Studdard (Winner Season 2) – He had to share the spot light with his little buddy, and was left in the shadow with less than stellar albums sells. Now he’s Broadway bound, starring in Ain’t Misbehavin’ with fellow Season 2 contestant, Frenchie Davis.

Clay Aiken (2) – Continues to enjoy moderate success despite a controversial reign thanks to his fanatical following the Claymanics, or Claymations or Claymitrons…Whatever.

Kimberley Locke (2) – Clay’s BFF has released her own album in addition to appearing on Celebrity Fit Club with Screech, Eek! That could make anyone lose their appetite.

Fantasia Barrino (Winner Season 3) – Fantasia received 3 Grammy nominations and she had a successful run in The Color of Purple on Broadway. It is almost enough to forget the dismal autobiographical bomb, a Lifetime movie.

Diana Degarmo (Runner Up Season 3) Performing in Hairspray

Jennifer Hudson (Season 3) Dreamgirl who won numerous awards including an Oscar, a Golden Globe, a BAFTA, and a SAG Award

Carrie Underwood (Winner Season 4) – Carrie’s album “Some Hearts” was chosen as the Favorite Country Album and she was chosen as the Favorite Female Country Artist at 2007 American Music Awards. She was also one of People Magazine’s Top 100 Most Beautiful People of 2007.

Bo Bice (Runner Up Season 4) Fizzled when his first album The Real Thing was released, but seems to have redeemed himself second attempt See the Light. If not, I don’t think we’ll see Bo on Broadway, unless it’s in The Hank Williams Story: A Musical.

Corey Clark (4) – Released a CD in 2005 about the same time he went to the press with Paulagate, followed by his tell all book: “They Told Me to Tell the Truth, So … (The Sex, Lies and Paulatics of One of America’s Idols).” the longest title of a book based on the shortest career in history.

Taylor Hicks (Winner Season 5) – Was recently dropped by his label, even though his self-titled album, released in December 2006, sold a respectable 699,000 copies. Maybe Hicks’ diva demands caught up to him.
Katherine McPhee (Runner Up Season 5) – Was also given the boot by her bosses as RCA Records. Who cares, she’s hot. She was voted one of People Magazine’s Top 100 Most Beautiful People of 2007 and Maxim’s Hot 100 Women of 2007.

Elliott Yamin (5) – Not so hot, but this boy can sing. Wait For You, from his debut album made Billboard’s Top 20

Chris Daughtry (5) – Probably the most successful contestant from Season 5. Coming in fourth was a shock for all his fans, but they rallied and bought his self titled debut CD, making him one of the top-selling artists of 2007

Jordin Sparks (Winner 6) – The youngest contestant to win American Idol, she’s jut released her first self titled album, including a duo w/ Chris Brown, No Air. With that kind of celebrity backing, she’s well on her way to being one of the popular kids.

Blake Lewis (Runner Up 6) Just released his debut album, Audio Day Dreams, so the jury’s still out on his singing career. He may end up with a weird hidden camera show, where he dresses up in costume to punk celebs. Who knows?

Sanjaya Malakar (6) Speaking of dressing up in costume…Last seen moon walking down Hollywood Blvd. Well, it was either him or Michael Jackson.

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The Mole

The Mole NBC

The Mole is coming back this summer.  I am doing a happy dance, even while I type these words.  

Sure, the Celebrity Mole was cheesy and lame, and probably the inspiration behind The Surreal Life, Celebrity Fat Club and a dozen other cheesy and lame “Celebrity” reality shows.

Celebrity Mole

But let’s not judge too soon. The original was great fun and the show kept me guessing about the Mole’s identity right up until the finale.  Even after the Mole was revealed, I had my doubts.

The Mole Season 1

For those of you unfamiliar with the Mole (gasp! I can hardly consider the possibility); it is a cross between
Amazing Race and a game of Clue. There is one saboteur to the group; their mission is to prevent the team from banking cash for successfully completed missions.  It should be easy to pick out the culprit, but every signal player makes a bone headed move at some point, so they are all suspect.  

Individuals then take a quiz with personal trivia questions, related to the Mole.  Whoever gets the lowest score is eliminated. Not only do the players have to compete in challenges; they have make note of what the other players are eating, wearing and doing.  

Sadly, Anderson Cooper won’t be back so maybe it won’t be as good as the original.  But I’ll watch nonetheless.

Anderson Cooper

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