Go On is Matthew Perry's third lousy show since Friends went off the air. We told you that Studio 60 On Sunset Strip sucked when the Water Cooler Set insisted it was hilarious. (Hilarious is that the critiques we made while the Water Cooler Set slept suddenly caught traction as Newsroom finally resulted in Aaron Sorkin's long on the screen sexism being noticed.) In early 2011, Mr. Sunshine debuted and, again, the Water Cooler Set was sure you'd love it. You hated it. No surprise there, we did as well.
If this were baseball, strike three would mean Perry would be out after this show. However, this is TV and that means that Perry, being a man, will get six or seven chances. A woman, by contrast, gets only one time to strike out on TV.
If it seems strange us working in sports, it's no stranger than Perry talking sports. He plays the host of a talk radio sports show. Yes, this is the man whose only successful TV role thus far has been Chandler Bing. If you didn't just nod your head knowingly, join us as we drop back to season seven of Friends, episode 20, "The One With Rachel's Big Kiss" (written by Shana Goldberg-Meehan and Scott Silveri) for the scene where Rachel (Jennifer Aniston) is helping Chandler (Perry) find a tuxedo.
Chandler: You mean these tuxes have been down the red carpet with people yelling, "Who are you wearing? You look fabulous!"
Rachel: Honey, might I suggest watching a little more ESPN and a little less E!?
Chandler: Okay, who wore those?
Rachel: Uhm, well, let's see. Uh, this one is Tom Brokaw.
Chandler: Not bad.
Rachel: This one is Paul O'Neil.
Chandler: Who's that?
Rachel: He plays for the Yankees. Seriously, ESPN. Just once and a while, have it on in the background.
It was a very funny minor scene in the episode (this is the episode where Winona Ryder guest stars as the Rachel's old sorority sister, the only woman Rachel ever made out with). It was funny because it was so Chandler.
Grasp that because no one at NBC or Universal did. Matthew Perry's persona onscreen is not that of a sport fan. So why have him play one? He's failed in two other shows and for his third show you're going to have him in a profession no one would believe?
What we couldn't believe was how bad he looked. If a woman showed up on camera like that, she wouldn't get one strike, she wouldn't even see her show get on the air.
The spray tan (we hope that's not make up) stops an inch before his hairline making him look ridiculous and it does nothing to conceal those awful bags under his eyes. Actually, bags? Those are vintage Louis Vuitton Steamer Trunks. Then there is the sweater and his turning to the side frequently as he displays side boob. Saggy side boob. Really saggy side boob.
And what's up with the way he's delivering lines? His voice is coming from the roof of his mouth (it's higher and flat out weird) and his delivery is so halting and unsure that he comes off drunk. (We called to ask if he was sick and an NBC friend said, "Doesn't he sound like Michael J. Fox? Not in Family Ties, but right now?" Since you brought it up, yes, he does and it's very curious to put it mildly.)
But so much is very curious lately. Like NPR.
No, we're not talking about the usual sexism running free as Audie Cornish plays idiot (she's playing, right?) while Eric Deggans humps the microphone and pretends he's a TV critic but all he offers is men, men, men. There are women on TV. We realize that when confronted with Oprah's network, Eric's penis shrunk in fear, "[. . .] it's a little scary to enter a world where my concerns are among the least considered in the universe."
His concerns. His interests. He's not a TV critic. He's a bad writer and he's worse on NPR. This is the third time we've called out Deggans (see here and here) for his sexism on NPR. Please note, we let most of it slide because we just don't have the time. It's very rare that Deggans appears without being sexist.
Where has the NPR ombudsperson been during all of this? And it's not one person. This has been going on through two terms. And as we've pointed out before, many times, NPR is over-run with male TV critics. Possibly the critics are booked because they, like NPR, won't give women equal time?
We're referring to the number of women booked as guests [for instance, see "Terry Gross' new low (Ann, Ava and C.I.)"] but, as our pen-pal Alicia Shephard noted in 2010, women rarely show up in NPR's news stories. And when they do, it can be very weird.
We're thinking of several stories last week, but we'll zoom in on just one, the report Larry Abramson filed on Morning Edition Wednesday. Abramaon informed listeners, "Crystal Gregory says she's supporting the Obama ticket because the budget plan proposed by congressman Ryan -- which never became law -- would change Medicare into a voucher program." Then she's featured declaring, "And since the mission of the Ryan budget is to change Medicare as we know it, and the mission of many people in the Republican Party is to privatize Social Security, I want to make sure that doesn't happen."
It was curious for a number of reasons, among them the inability to fact check Gregory who badly needs to be enlightened. Let's drop back to the January 9, 2008 "Iraq snapshot:"
Is Crystal Gregory aware of any of that? Not from her statements. And Abramson made no attempt to inform her or listeners of his report. He didn't even note Barack's January 11, 2009 discussion with George Stephanopoulos on This Week (ABC -- video and text):