Tuesday, June 21, 2016

TV: Chelsea lately?

"I just think he's so great. I hate the girl.  The girl I hear was just killed. Thank God. it's supposed to be his daughter.  She's terrible."

No, TV criticism isn't for everyone.

And Martha Stewart is among those not up to it.


She's sharing her thoughts on NBC's THE BLACKLIST in what we're quoting, sharing with Chelsea Handler, and she's speaking of the actress who plays Elizabeth (Megan Boone) and apparently unaware that (a) killing Liz off resulted in massive protests from fans and (b) the 'death' was a plot twist (to allow downtime for Boone to give birth) and that Liz was back on the show.

An unpopular opinion?

A critic can stake that out (though maybe not if you depend upon people to buy your wares at Home Depot).

But weighing in on a 'death' that had been rumored for months to be fake and that was known as fake after the May 19th season finale of THE BLACKLIST?

Not really testifying to an ability to watch TV.

BREAKING BAD?  She dismissed the show as one she didn't watch because the people were too ugly.

ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK was another show she didn't watch.

"Too close to home?" Chelsea asked, referencing Martha's 2004 conviction for insider trading and the imprisonment that followed.

"Too close to home?"

It's why Chelsea Handler makes such a great talk show host.

It's a funny comment and punctures the hot air many celebrities can have.

It raises an issue that needs to be commented on.

A day after watching over a dozen episodes of CHELSEA, Handler's new NETFLIX talk show, we happened to catch a failure -- another interviewer who refused to ask the question, to puncture the self-satisfied celebrity.

It was Sunday, CBS, 60 MINUTES.

There was Anderson Cooper interviewing professional frat boy JT Holmes.

Holmes, for those who missed it, 'needs' to go to Eiger in the Swiss Alps -- via helicopter -- to risk his life in what is not amazing and is not a sport.

More to the point, why does he need to be on Eiger?

Why is it necessary so ski (and parachute) on Eiger just because no one has?

Are we not to be allowed any spot  on the earth that is not plundered by human kind in its search for amusement?

And how long do we need to pretend that near death experiences qualify as sports?

Cooper should have asked those questions.

He also should have asked the cost of a 'sport' that requires a helicopter fly you up to a mountain, that several people use tools to create 'slopes' for you to ski down on the untouched mountain and how much it costs for the helicopter to pick you up after you jump off the cliff on your skis and hopefully land alive 2,000 or so feet below.

He should have asked what the carbon foot print for this 'sport' was.

He asked none of those questions.

Chelsea usually asks the needed questions.

And has done so with Florence Henderson and many others.

With Anna Farris, we honestly would have asked why she was obsessed with Goldie Hawn?

Farris' outfit and especially her hair harkened back to Goldie's look in the early 70s (see especially her as Jill in the classic film SHAMPOO).

With Gavin Newsom?

We would have suggested he cut his hair.


What's with our emphasis on hair?

Chelsea put the emphasis there -- with her focus on Donald Trump's hair.

And Donald's hair or 'hair' has never been realistic but in the 80s, as clips she aired  demonstrated, it wasn't the nightmare it is now.

Gavin's hair is crossing over into nightmare territory -- and that includes the wisps on the side that really don't qualify as sideburns.

Gavin, we love you, but someone needs to stage a hair intervention while you're still Lt. Governor of California and before you seek a higher office.


That's the problem with Chelsea's show.

The only real problem.

When she's doing something  like a highlight reel of him bragging on himself -- how rich he is and how supposedly smart he is -- that's fine.

We laughed.

But when she feels the need to talk Donald with guests?

We can only watch Chunk (Chelsea's dog) lick his paw and walk around for so long while we try to tune out those banal discussions.

We're not voting for Donald Trump.

(Nor are we voting for Hillary.)

And we really don't need to hear, every damn episode, what some hack -- Will Arnett, that especially means your sexist and tired ass -- thinks.

We really don't need to hear about 'emergency back up plans' to leave the United States should Donald Trump become president.

It's not funny.

And doesn't go to a belief in democracy or any pride in America.

(So why the hell did Arnett go from Canadian citizen to American?)

To be very clear, Chelsea had a bit with young girls in Mexico where they took turns hitting a pinata of Donald Trump.

That didn't bother us.

But a bunch of gas bagging over Donald Trump?

We don't need it, we don't want it, it doesn't make for good TV.

Find another topic, please.

Chelsea insists she has a soapbox and it's her job to use it.

Actually, it's not.

Her job is to bring in 'streamers' for NETFLIX.

She can do that by discussing issues and we certainly enjoyed the gun discussion with her, Wiz Khalifa and Gavin Newsom.

And Gavin's point about regulating ammunition is a new point that needs discussing.

We enjoyed it.

We'd love any issues discussion.

(We were less involved in the gun discussion she had with Ellen Page, Florence Henderson and Chelsea's third grade teacher.  If she really wants to have a discussion, she might need to offer up a panel that includes more than 'yes men' who agree with everything.)

But, like most Americans, we're not enthused over Donald or Hillary Clinton and we'd honestly rather have something of substance to discuss.

And humor being included is even better.

BET television at all times -- that was Martha Stewart's lament to Chelsea about being behind bars.

Martha Stewart:  Only one TV available and you had to sit in a room on hard chairs and you had to look up like this at the TV.

Chelsea Handler: OMG, what a nightmare.

It's in moments like those that Chelsea especially delivers.

She's currently the best thing in the talk format -- and that's no small feat.

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