Thursday, February 21, 2013

CBS' "The Job" gets sent packing

CBS reality show "The Job" was cancelled after two episodes and a negligible 0.7 rating among viewers 18-49. That is almost an historically low viewership for a network show in prime time.
A program in which desperate, unemployed people compete for a single job in 2013 isn't exactly escapist fare.

"The Job" filled the same Friday night time slot of legal dramedy "Made in Jersey", which also was cancelled after only two episodes. Viewers had a hard time embracing its premise : a Manhattan attorney overcomes an almost insurmountable handicap : being born in the state of New Jersey!
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"The Amazing Race" usually strains mightily to present a Noah's Arc-like roster of "two of everything" to appeal to every demographic. TAR's 22nd season recently kicked off with the requisite multi-culti cast, which includes a team of two Roller Derby Moms to represent that limited niche, yet no Latinos.
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While it's not uncommon for a successful network show to inspire imitators, it's exceedingly rare for a bomb to do so.
Such is the case for Fox's "Stars in Danger: the High Dive", a one-hour "experiment" in which C-list celebs tried their hand at Olympic-style diving. SID belly-flopped in the ratings, attracting an unimpressive 3.4 million viewers when it aired in January.
Yet that's not stopping ABC from mounting its own diving show "Splash" (what's the deal with all the one-word titles all of a sudden?).
The "Splash" roster includes Nicole Eggert, Kendra Wilkinson, Chuy from "Chelsea Lately" and comedian Louie Anderson. The late addition of Miss Alabama Katherine Webb means that the show can count on Brent Mussberger watching.
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Most people weren't even aware that Rex Reed was still reviewing movies when the Melissa McCarthy flap hit the fan.
I had thought Reed had retired some time after serving as a judge on "The Gong Show" in the Seventies.
While Reed is free to dislike "Identity Thief" -- as a majority of critics did -- his description of McCarthy as a "cacophonous, tractor sized...female hippo" is a personal attack that has no place in a film critique.
But there's something also wrong about the producers of "Identity Thief" assuming the moral high ground.  With its many scenes of Jason Bateman duking it out with McCarthy --heck, even slamming her with a guitar --the film seems to be saying that it's OK for men to get into physical altercations with women as long as the women are plus-sized.
It's hard to imagine the exact same inter-gender battle royales taking place with, say, Tina Fey or Amy Poehler in the McCarthy role.
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While Fox's "New Girl" gets decent ratings, I don't know anyone who would call it laugh-out funny. Compared to "Seinfeld", it's a drama.
I've never quite understood the premise of the show: Jess breaks up with her boyfriend so she feels compelled to live with three male strangers... Huh?
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re: the studio audience members of ABC's "The Chew"
These fine folks obviously have a lot of free time on their hands to sit in a studio for an hour to watch other people cook. Do you suppose these are people who wanted to see a television taping while visiting New York and couldn't get tickets for Letterman, Fallon or "The View" ?

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