Monday, June 26, 2017


One of the great accomplishments of TNT's CLAWS is having a vibrant and unique visual look.  Log in hours of TV and you'll quickly realize how rare that is.

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Go over to TCM, for instance, where all they have to do is offer shots between movies and you'll see one fail after another.

And we're not just talking about Makiewicz.

Yes, Ben Mankiewicz is a horror and has no place in front of a mirror, let alone a camera.

There's that hideous forehead, that awful hair and, of course, he still doesn't know how to dress himself, this only months after TCM already spoke to him about his over-sized suits.  Since then, the chief problem has become the pants length.

Does Schmootzy think he's still due for a growth spurt?

Contrast that with Dave Karger -- whose calf muscles in his skinny jeans while speaking with author William Mann still stand out.

Why is Karger just an occasional host?

Better yet, why are Alec Baldwin and Tina Fey even on?

They were most recently discussing REAR WINDOW -- or pretending to.

Tina referred to Jammy Stewart's character as an injured war photographer -- clueing you in right away that she'd never watched the film closely.

She then explained her attitude towards Grace Kelly by folding her arms across her chest and frowning.  Grace, she said snottily, wears 50s clothes well.

Alec rushed to disagree with Tina's self-assessment about her own looks but the cameras were on Tina's side -- she did look bad.

Did she have bones removed from her face?

Where there weren't crevices, there were these huge skin slides.

By contrast, Alec just had to deal with the the fact that his skin looked like over-baked clay.

Dispensing with actual facts about the film allowed the two to be breezy and overly-familiar.

Maybe there's a place for the two on TCS -- TURNER CANCELED SITCOMS -- but they don't belong on TURNER CLASSIC MOVIES.

By contrast, every visual works on CLAWS.

The series -- produced by Rashida Jones, among others -- revolves around Desna Simms (Niecy Nash) who's trying to make her way in Florida and dreams of her own chain of nail salons while dealing with the Dixie mafia.

Niecy Nash is the perfect star for this show with overtones and vibrant backdrops.

She never chews the scenery but always manages to stand out.

She's aided by a strong supporting cast which includes Judy Reyes (Quiet Ann), Carrie Preston (Polly), Jenn Lyon (Jennifer) and Karrueche Tran (Virginia).

But possibly the most important support comes from . . .

Jack Kesy's rear.

Kesy does an excellent job playing Roller but leaving an even larger impact than his talent is his butt in one nude scene after another.

We know some may disagree with that.

Not about the impact of Kesy's ass but about him playing Roller.

That's because Roller 'dies' in episode one -- Desna tries to drown him and then he starts punching her and Virginia shoots him. The two women drop his body on a boat, light it on fire and send it sailing.

And, yes, Roller's now had a funeral.

But, did you forget, there was another body in that boat (someone Roller had killed)?

And did you forget only one body was found -- after the bulk of it was eaten by the gators?

Or that he was primarily identified via his broken grill -- the same grill that broke when Virginia tried to put it back in his mouth?

Roller's not dead.

And if things are complicated right now, expect them to get even more so when he shows back up.

In the meantime, there is the complex and confusing Uncle Daddy (Dean Norris) terrorizing everyone in sight, motivated by greed, anger and the loss of Roller.

All of this and Polly's tales of being forced into marrying the leader of the Symbionese Liberation Army at the age of 14?

CLAWS is a stunner in every way.

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