I see…I see no clothes in your future! The Simple Life – Episode 8

“I see…I see no clothes in your future.” – The Simple Life, Episode 8

By: Chloe

Nicole and Paris have traveled from afar and now are in Ellicott Maryland. Have you noticed that they haven’t traveled out of range of New York City? Anyway, they have some spare time and decide to spend it in a diner where they pig out and order just about everything on the menu. During their lunch, they notice a couple of teenage boys giving them the eye. They invite them over to share their feast.

Nicole talks one of the boys into letting her do his hair. She puts braids on the sides and then plops her huge bug eye sunglasses on him. He makes a very pretty girl, which I’m sure he would NEVER have done had he not been on TV.

The Foote family invites Nicole and Paris to stay extra nights with them, since their internship will not start till later. The grandmother lives in a house next to the Foote’s. Nicole wants to know if the grandmother has a boyfriend. There is talk of a neighbor across the street, but the grandmother is too shy. Light bulbs go off over Paris and Nicole’s head. Matchmaking is ripe in the air.

The next day brings the oddest internship yet for the girls – a psychic, Mrs. Ann in Washington D.C. Mrs. Ann surprisingly appears very young and dressed normally for someone in her field. In the initial interview, Mrs. Ann determines that Nicole and Paris may have some psychic ability. A fact which neither girl disputes and therefore they allow Mrs. Ann to assume they possess the talent.

Mrs. Ann stresses the seriousness of being a psychic and gives Nicole and Paris the opportunity to read her energy by using Tarot cards. Paris says Mrs. Ann will die for her love or someone will die. The girls are making it up as they go along and Mrs. Ann gives them the benefit of the doubt.

Next is the lesson on reading the lines in someone’s palm. Paris and Nicole seem to be taking the psychic thing as a big joke. However, Mrs. Ann is very serious.

The girls go home for lunch and decide to invite Harry, the neighbor from across the street, over to do a little matchmaking with Pearl the grandmother. They get him on the couch and try to carry on a conversation, but bless his heart he can’t hear very well, so even Nicole’s foul languages falls on…well deaf ears.

That afternoon the girls return to Mrs. Ann’s to read for some of her clients. The first gentleman comes in, actually they are all guys and not women, and he promptly notices the bedroom. Okay…out he goes. In comes another one and the girls tell him only a chest reading is available, so off goes the shirt. Nicole tests his chest and says he has great energy.

Another client comes in and gets a hickey reading by Paris. Paris says he has more than one hickey from more than one girl. Nicole says he has one from a vacuum cleaner.

Mrs. Ann reviews with the girls, stressing once again that psychic reading is to be taken very seriously. The woman has no sense of humor at all. The girls feel that the readings should be done with the client’s naked.

A group of Canadians arrive for their reading. Nicole tells them they need to remove their tops in order to receive the reading and then their pants. Then they all get on their hands and knees while Nicole chants nonsense.

Mrs. Ann comes in to tell Nicole and Paris that there have been complaints. She gives them another chance, however, and tells the girls to go to Soma Fit spa to help out with the spa guests. The director works with Mrs. Ann in taking care of her customers.

Okay, Paris and Nicole must be getting tired of their internships, because they are not taking any of this seriously. After a reading or two, they escape to the manicurist and have their nails done.

The spa director, Lucy, later finds them relaxed and reading magazines and rushes to the phone to tattle on Nicole and Paris. Mrs. Ann promptly fires them. Ouch!

Oh, well, on to the matchmaking! Paris and Nicole hurry home to the Foote’s house and invite Harry over for a dinner with Pearl. They set the table and make the dinner. Looks like Chef Boy-R-Dee spaghetti from a can.

Harry comes over for his dinner with Pearl. Nicole and Paris leave the two alone and an awkward silence reigns. Nicole and Paris watch from around the corner. Harry makes his move and manages a kiss on Pearl’s cheek. This finally elicits a laugh from Pearl whose enthusiasm would not even fill a thimble.

Ah, L’amore! Well it’s on the road again for Nicole and Paris.

I welcome your comments. chloe@realityshack.com

Forget the Poisonous Apple; Avoid the Toxic Person!” – Starting Over, 03-31-05

”Forget the Poisonous Apple; Avoid the Toxic Person!” – Starting Over, 03-31-05

By: Cori Linder

Let’s break out in applause: Candy is getting her hair cut! I’ve been waiting for this moment the entire time. It’s always been her mark of femininity, but now, she is happy with herself on the inside and doesn’t need her long hair to feel like a woman.

In group, Tess says that she realizes she has “issues” not only with her husband but with everybody else. “Wow, what a self-discovery, and only after a day or so,” says Iyanla sarcastically; however, Tess doesn’t get her underlying message. In confessional, Iyanla says, “I see the tears, I hear the words, but I just don’t feel the energy. Is this a contrived problem to get attention?” Much to her dismay, Tess is told she has a lot of toxins (her marriage, etc.) How do you detox, asks Iyanla. The simple answer is to acknowledge it, own it, and then make the choice.

After group, Rhonda and Bethany go for a walk. Bethany’s main barrier to achieving what she wants and embracing possibilities is perfectionism. It’s like she is running into a big brick wall…and look!….they just happened to come upon a physical brick wall. How timely! Will Bethany walk around it, or will she walk through it? She then uses graffiti to visually express her barriers, such as being “too fat,” “too ugly,” and “scared.” After all this time, Bethany has still not given this up. Finally, seeing the other side, Bethany rips down the wall.

Candy is blissfully happy because her “boo-boo” (Robert, her boyfriend) is coming. As Candy is getting her hair cut, Robert meets with Iyanla. Tonight, Robert will take Candy out to dinner and will then invite her to dance. In the past, Candy had a hard time letting Robert lead during their dance. Iyanla wants Robert to test Candy to see if she will now let Robert lead. Rob meets with a dance instructor to learn how to “lead” Candy. He reminds me a lot of Candy.

I’m so proud of Candy when she tells the hairstylist she wants a new style and a blonder shade. She doesn’t need the old hair anymore, she realizes.

Poor Rachel is having such a hard time about the entire family betrayal issue—she’s handling it a lot better than I would. Her family (especially Aunt Ellen!) is, after all, TOXIC!!! Rachel needs to write down her anger on plates, such as being shipped off, having to sleep on the couch, not being welcomed at family events, wasting $175,000 of her inheritance, etc. She then forcefully throws down each plate, releasing the anger. She now needs to talk to her aunt.

Meanwhile, Tess’s assignment is to ask people how she shows love and withholds love. When you’re not evil, her husband basically answers. She becomes upset. She then calls her mother who says Tess only shows love verbally and not physically (no hugs). Her mother says Tess ignores her and doesn’t call her. Tess’s sister doesn’t know how Tess shows her love. All these comments don’t even seem to faze her. Would it be an understatement to say that Tess is a bit cold?

Rachel calls Aunt Ellen and says she has questions. Aunt Ellen says she won’t answer any questions verbally OR in letters. “That went bad,” says Rachel after hanging up. Yes, it did.

The results are in: Candy looks FABULOUS! Her hair is shorter, straighter, and blonder. Robert loves it! They have a nice dinner, and Candy tells him she feels alive and happy. They dance, and Robert takes the lead. He then tells her, that Candy is GRADUATING!!!! Just don’t invite Aunt Ellen to the graduation.

Stay tuned…

Are Idol Voters Dialing the Wrong Numbers? – American Idol 4, 3-30-05

Are Idol Voters Dialing the Wrong Numbers?

by Sue Mulcahy

Are the voters for American Idol dialing the wrong numbers? That’s the only explanation I can think of for what happened last night. Looking like he was wearing his father’s suit, host Ryan Seacrest put each contestant through the typical weekly humiliation. One by one the contestants were in the spotlight for their Tuesday night performance and a brief recap of what the judges thought.

With a decent performance on Tuesday, Nikko was told he will also continue through to next week’s show. He’s starting to grow on me, especially after he was sent home and then called at 2:00am to come back.

In results that shocked no one, Constantine and Bo both wound up “safe”. While they both continue to perform at a high level I have to admit that Constantine is wearing on my nerves. The judges may like him, but I can’t shake the feeling that part of being on American Idol is just a big joke to him. That being said, both he and Bo gave decent performances on Tuesday.

Carrie will continue into the next round. I cringe when any contestant on these shows sings songs recorded by Martina McBride, Whitney Houston, or Barbra Streisand. Why would anyone want to compete with those types of vocal ranges? And yet many of these contestants do it. Carrie blew me away with her rendition of McBride’s “Independence Day”.

For the second week in a row, Nadia wound up in the bottom three. Frankly I believe she has one of the best voices in the competition, and she has great stage presence. But it’s votes that count and she finds herself on the bubble again. Scott and Anthony were told they were continuing on. Nadia was quickly joined by Jessica and Anwar.

That meant Vonzell will have a chance to perform next week. She is far and away one of the most improved contestants in the competition. She waded into shark infested waters on Tuesday by selecting Houston’s “I have nothing” but she was excellent. She also had the benefit of going last; something I personally believe helps you in the voting if you give even a so-so performance.

I have to say that I am very rarely shocked by reality television. But I was last night. How could anyone think that any of these three were worse than Scott and Anthony? On Tuesday Simon called Anthony’s performance “absolutely excruciating” and let me tell you, I thought he was being kind. If Anthony even sang four notes of Elton John’s song “Something About The Way You Look Tonight” on pitch, I’d be stunned.

Scott’s Tuesday night performance of Brian McKnight’s “One Last Cry” almost made me cry. I thought he should have been booted out of the show the last couple of weeks. The fact that he was not in the bottom three this week makes me wonder about how the voting actually works.

A nervous Nadia was told she was “safe”, leaving Anwar and Jessica alone in the spotlight. The judges seemed surprised that one of these two was going home. “This is a singing competition” Randy said. He’s right but it seems many voters and casting their ballots on likeability rather than talent. Jessica has just not created the fan base many of the other contestants have.

As Anwar and Jessica stand there holding hands waiting for the results, I couldn’t help but think how America’s voters got it so wrong. In the end, Jessica was sent packing. I truly believe she had one of the four best voices this season. But the voting went against her. I just hope the voters are dialing the right numbers and voting based on talent. Otherwise America could wind up with a really likeable idol who can’t sing on key.

For comments or suggestions you can email Sue Mulcahy at suemulcahy@aol.com

Kelly Clarkson's Breakaway

Kelly Clarkson’s Breakaway

Reviewed by: Panndyra, Goddess of Chaos

Review: Breakaway is Kelly Clarkson’s 2nd full-length album. She really proves why she was the original (and still the best!) American Idol while still managing to transcend that title. This is solid hit-making CD is from beginning to end. You get the hits like Since U Been Gone and the title track, Breakaway, which was co-written by Avril Lavigne. They’re as different as night and day, but both great in their own special way.

She’ll break your heart with the lyrics and vocals on Because of You, a song that’s about a difficult childhood and how it still affects a young woman’s ability to trust others. Kelly co-wrote it and several others on this CD like Because of You and Behind These Hazel Eyes. She’s branching out – and I like it.

I will not make
the same mistakes that you did
I will not let myself
cause my heart so much misery

(the first few lines of Because of You)

There’s not a song on here that isn’t decent. Most are pretty good. I’m not a fan of the last track, Beautiful Disaster, although Kelly does a great vocal with horrible lyrics.

Here are a few:

he drowns in his dreams
an exquisite extreme…
and if i tried to save him
my whole world could cave in (OH GOD! Make it stop!)

We know the girl can sing unlike some of her contemporary pop counterparts. No lip-synching for Ms. Clarkson. Her voice is pure, strong and amazing. Great! Now I sound like Paula Abdul.

Pros: There’s at least 3 more hits off this CD. It’s a great value for your musical buck.

Cons: Would have liked more of the rock edge and less schmaltz in some of the lyrics.

Final Recommendation: Even Simon Cowell would approve of this CD. Buy it, but don’t sing along – you may hurt yourself (and others).

captainD's Boot Prediction – Survivor Palau, Episode 7

captainD’s boot prediction survivor palau episode 7

by captainD

Another crushing defeat. After only 6 episodes I am already running out of ways to start this column. That’s because every week is like reading from the same recipe . . . Start with a little Koror cheering. Add some of Stephenie complaining. Throw in a sarcastic comment by Probst and mix that all together with Ulong at tribal council. Then repeat steps 1-4 seven times.
There is no doubt that Ulong will go down as the worst tribe in Survivor history, but at least one member will make the jury. Ye-haw!

At the beginning of the season we were introduced to some fresh original challenges. Now we seem to be going back to the same ol’ stuff. The “SOS” reward challenge should favor Koror who have plenty of extra wood to burn. The immunity challenge will be . . . . aw, who the heck cares. We all know who’s gonna win. Tribal council is a toss-up between Bobby Jon and Ibrehem. Since they won’t let us vote them both out we will have to settle for one. The next person to leave Palau is IBREHEM.

Questions? Comments? E-mail me at captainDs5@yahoo.com

America’s Next Top Model Cycle 4, Episode 5 – The Attack of the Flesh-Eating Bacteria (or not)

America’s Next Top Model 5 – The Attack of the Flesh-Eating Bacteria

by Panndyra, Goddess of Chaos – email: panndyra@realityshack.com

Michelle has been beyond stressed out. Her behavior has been erratic and some of the girls are freaked out by her. Tonight, the girls had more of a reason to be concerned. She had these oozing, scabby sores that were sprouting up all over her face.

Good thing it’s makeup week on America’s Next Top Model. They go to the MUD makeup house to learn how to camouflage their ‘flaws’ whilst maintaining a natural look. Jay Manuel, dressed up as an old man, started teaching them about makeup application. The girls were bored and not really paying attention. He finally gives them a clue – that it’s him in the costume.

See how makeup can transform you? Great! I always wanted to look like an ugly old man.

At the end of their session, they had to make each other over into a go-see look. Jay wanted it to be natural yet fierce, something that would impress potential clients but not be too over the top. He told the girls to pair off and make each other’s faces up. Tiffany and Lluvy had a hard time concealing Michelle’s sores. Michelle also got really upset at herself. She’s quite the perfectionist and really down on herself. It’s becoming a huge issue. Otherwise, the ‘challenge’ was pretty uneventful.

They go back to the apartment and have their first one on one talk with Miss Tyra. Some of the girls are just still in awe of Tyra and don’t know what to talk about. Michelle’s concerned about her face. She thought it was stress. Tyra was like – “That ain’t stress. Want me to set up an appointment for you with a dermatologist?”

Noelle talks a lot during this episode about how she misses her baby. As a mom of two, I can relate to how she feels. However, she’s there to give him a better life and some of the other girls say she talks too much about her kid. I also realize that, as a parent, no one else cares as much about your kid as you do; nor do they want to hear about your child. They’re just not emotionally invested in it.

The next morning, they had an early challenge. Mr. Jay set up a bunch of makeup stations and gave the girls 45 seconds at each to create a haute couture look. He asked the girls if anyone knew what haute couture was. None of them stepped up to the plate. It’s high fashion, you wanna-be fashion models. Hello?

Michelle had a hard time again. She was just finding everything so difficult this episode. It was ANNOYING!

Naima had a beautiful, fierce look. She said she drew her inspiration from the ballet, Swan Lake. She also won the Cover Girl challenge for the 3rd week in a row.

She chose Christine and Lluvy to go with her to pick out custom-made hand bags from Jessica Scheer.

Back at the apartment, Noelle was talking to her mom about Michelle’s face. Her mom was like, “there’s this flesh-eating bacteria that’s resistant to antibiotics out there and it’s killing people.” Noelle handled the situation quite well – she told everyone in the loft – and exaggerated it more than mildly.

Before long, all the girls were calling home. More than a few felt itchy. Lluvy almost vomited and she was very concerned because she had shared makeup with Michelle during the first challenge. Tiffany’s grand mom was cool. She was like, “y’all need to read a book.” They were blowing it way out of proportion, she said.

Makeup week continued with the photo shoot. Each of the girls was going to use the power of makeup to transcend their own ethnicity and become another one for a “Got Milk?” ad. After a few of the models figured out what the word ethnicity meant, they were cool with the idea.

In addition to the milk mustaches, they all had to pose with a child. Most of the girls were overwhelmed by the heavy toddlers. Tiffany and Noelle acted like the moms they were and did a better job at handling the kids than perhaps the cameras. Naima, who’s African-American, Mexican-Indian and Irish, got to play an Icelandic girl. Lluvy was Swedish. Keenyah pretended to be Korean. Rebecca was a stunning Italian and Brittany pulled off an African-American look pretty well.

During the prep, the makeup artist was concerned about Michelle’s face. The wounds were bloody and oozing. So, they checked with Jay and it was decided that they should send Michelle to the dermatologist toot sweet.

To Michelle’s relief, she had a bacterial infection called Impetigo, which is harder to pronounce than to cure – at least for some of the models. Her only issue was that because it is somewhat contagious, she wasn’t allowed to pose with a child. Most of the other models were upset at that. Oh well! Get over it.

Tatiana was like, now that we know she’s not going to kill us basically – maybe we overreacted a bit. Ya think?

On to judging. The challenge was that the girls had to create a night makeup look in three minutes flat with NO MIRROR. Nole told Brittany that her look was very CRAYOLA. It was really hard to see the makeup on most of the other girls. Naima had a blending issue and was pretty quiet. Rebecca put blush all the way up to her hairline like Blondie did during the 70s.

Michelle almost crumbled when they critiqued her look and her picture. She told the judges about her skin condition. Janice Dickinson related some fascinating stories about modeling with one eye during a sty (a sort of clogging of the tear duct) incident and going to work with ‘pimples on her ass’. She says a Top Model has to transcend these things and project happiness always.

In the end, Noelle and Lluvy were the last two standing. Lluvy had said that she would crack if she was in the bottom two again. She seemed to handle it okay, but we’ll see next week because she’s still in it. Noelle was sent packing because the judges feel she has less potential and doesn’t look like a model in person.

Next week, Michelle has another meltdown and Brittany gets a little raucous during an alcohol-friendly outing.

Weep No More My Lady! Please! The Starlet, Episode 5

weep nomore my lady please the starlet episode 5

by Chloe

There are only four girls left in the running – Michelynne, Mercedes, Cecile and Katie. They begin this episode with comedy coach Michele Danner. Comedy is a stretch for all of the girls and in their side interviews they all express ignorance for this side of the craft.

First up are Katie and Michelynne with a scene revolving around a family member who is in the hospital. While performing they have to wear big Bozo the Clown noses and shoes. This adds a sense of silly, of which the girls seem unaware, but it is effective in their lighter attitude.

Mercedes and Cecile go next, and while Cecile dives right in, Mercedes seems to hesitate and not get into the scene at all. It is so obvious she is very uncomfortable and frustrated. Coach Michele accuses her of being passive and attacks her attitude.

Next the girls do a little creative improv. The coach yells out a character and they have to immediately put themselves into that character. Michelynne had to be a karate expert and a duck. Katie was a bear scratching her back. Mercedes was supposed to be a rock singer, but completely stalled and wound up fumbling around the stage in embarrassment. The coach tells her to be a striptease dancer, but she refuses. She is reduced to tears once again, as she shuts off the creative juices. Someone hand her a Kleenex box!

Coach Michele tells them they have to take a chance in comedy or they will be boring. Best in class for comedy was Michelynne, who won the Diva Suite again and an interview dinner with a comedy director.

Cecile and Mercedes now realize this is a competition, and that they’ll have to work harder to stay in the running.

Screen test for the day was a scene from Friends between Rachel and Phoebe. One difference from the other tests – they will be performing in front of a live audience.

That evening, Michelynne goes off to dinner with her comedy director, Luke Greenfield. They hit it off. Luke was impressed with Michelynne’s determination.

Meanwhile back at the house, Cecile and Katie are arguing over who will play Phoebe and who will play Rachel’s role. Cecile decides she will play Rachel. Later she changes her mind and tries to talk Katie out of playing Phoebe. Katie doesn’t budge.

The next day, Coach Michele shows up at the house to help the girls out. She does a session with each group. Katie tries to help out Cecile with direction, but it isn’t received well.

During Mercedes’ and Michelynne’s session, Coach Michele says they are boring and tries to get them to liven up. Michelynne and Mercedes are getting annoyed with each other. Coach Michele fusses at Mercedes, who analyzes the situation and she gets weepy again! Still got that box of Kleenex, Mercedes?

At the Comedy Store that night, the girls prepare for their screen test. To their surprise, the judges, Vivica, Joseph and Faye are also in attendance for the tests. Surges of nerves sweep over all of the girls.

Mercedes and Michelynne go first. Mercedes was too giddy and fake. Michelynne, however, actually made me and the audience laugh!

Katie and Cecile went next. Cecile also was too unreal in the role. She and Katie didn’t mesh at all on stage. Katie tried too hard.

The judges were very impressed with Michelynne. With Mercedes they could tell she found the scene hard. They thought she gave up. Vivica told her she was good only because of her partner.

Katie did not impress the judges when she ad-libbed the scene. The judges could not agree about Cecile and even argued over the technique Cecile used.

In her side interview, Katie turns on the drippy eye faucet as she relays how much she’s been through and how much it means to her to be The Starlet. Mascara certainly doesn’t last around this crew.

It was a hard decision, but Cecile was given her leave. The judges said they wanted to send two girls home tonight, but decided to give one girl another chance. Cecile was axed mainly because of her performance that evening. Faye said she didn’t have the acting ability…yet. Cecile of course weeps at the end, though she vows to keep trying. You can almost see Scarlet in the scene from Gone With the Wind…fist is in the air and she vows, “I’ll never give up! Not while there’s breath in my body!” Whew, where’s my Kleenex box?

I welcome your comments. Chloe@realityshack.com

How Could A Prayer Meeting Go This Horribly Wrong? – Nashville Star 3, Episode 5

by Lisa

Tonight is Original Song Night, which is one of the big reasons why this is a far more interesting competition than American Idol. Could you imagine the sheer entertainment value of watching the performance of an original number by Justin Guarini? Mikalah Gordon? Jon Peter Lewis??? But apparently even Fox doesn’t have the guts for that. Which is why I am so glad Nashville Star is back for a third season.

As we settle in in front of our TVs, singer/songwriter/Nashville Star judge Phil Vassar starts off the show with “Take That As A Yes“. Wow, I get tired just watching him go. Not only does he dance on the piano, but then he hops down and plays it in a fashion that makes Jerry Lee Lewis look lethargic. He does a fabulous job of giving our contestants something to aspire to. Our host LeAnn Rimes welcomes us to the show and announces that she is “under the weather”, apparently a victim of the bug that the contestants were passing around last week. Her usually smooth voice has taken on a 2-pack-a-day quality that is actually sort of interesting on her. But unfortunately it means she will have to bow out from her scheduled duet with Bret Michaels tonight! Major bummer!! As a side note, the person who writes the little “Last time on Nashville Star…” blurb on the show’s official website apparently DOES NOT WATCH THE SHOW as their mini-recap claims that the duet did in fact occur. But with Tivo as my witness, I am here to inform you that, so so sadly, it did not.

Just as American Idol likes to play with our emotions on elimination night, Nashville Star has gotten really good at calling the obvious non-losers out to sing first, and then leaving us chewing our fingernails when it is down to the last 2 or 3. Tonight is no different, as the first singer’s name to be shouted out is the incredibly consistent Jason Meadows. He sings an original composition called “Bigshot” which he explains is a tribute to his wife. Awwww. He totally channels George Strait on this one, but hey there are a lot worse sins to commit on stage. I am liking him more and more each week, even if he is not overly original. Bret says he’s got the potential and that is a fair warning to everyone backstage, Anastasia says he nailed it but she doesn’t know if she would pay $12.99 for his CD vs. George Strait, and Phil says he has great energy but just needs to distinguish himself.

The next name called is a bit more surprising, it’s the Teflon boy Justin David. He sings a ballad he wrote called “Finding A Way Back to You”. It is a solid performance, but seems to lack passion, especially in the wake of high-energy Jason. Anastasia says he didn’t kick it in until the chorus, Bret says he has great tone but needs to put more emotion into it, and Phil says he has potential.

And for those of you who need a bathroom break, it is now time for an update with Cletus. Judging from the outfit he has on, if he were performing an original song, it would be called “Like A Rhinestone Pirate”. I try not to let the huge parrot-colored skull-covered sequin-encrusted ensemble distract me from his uninteresting commentary. Cletus proceeds to ask Tamika and Erika Jo what the hardest thing has been about this past week, and Tamika explains that the meeting she called last week was a prayer meeting and it had nothing to do with Erika Jo. To refresh your memory, last week we saw footage of Tamika talking about how some of the older contestants were maybe more deserving of the Nashville Star title than some of the younger contestants who had not been slogging away at it for as long. Like I said in my recap last week, I think this comment was mostly the result of creative film editing to make the episode more interesting. So this is worrisome that voters might actually have been convinced that Tamika needed to be punished for her comments. I guess we’ll know the answer shortly…

The next person called to safety is Jenny Farrell who sings a breakup song called “Hard to Take”. It’s sort of a power ballad, which showcases her voice nicely but is frankly not all that interesting. This is disappointing as I have really started to look forward to her performances. Anastasia says it is “yawn inducing”, Phil says she seemed nervous, and Bret says her chorus is a killer, but she should have moved up a key to fit her voice better.

Up next to the microphone is Jayron Weaver singing his song “She’s Not The Kind”, written about a girl he liked in college. He clearly has a great voice, but personally I think tonight’s song is almost as dull as Jenny’s. Phil says he is the best song so far and also the best singer, and Bret says he is blessed with a voice that brings people in, and Anastasia says “your voice sounds like an angel from above, but I’d sign you to a Christian record deal before a country record deal”.

So then there are 3. I think most bets at this point would be on Jody Evans being eliminated, but that is surprisingly the name that LeAnn calls out next. Tamika looks visible stunned, and then she looks at Erika and her expression shifts to visibly worried. Meanwhile, Jody takes to the stage and sings a bad luck ballad called “Chances”. He comes off as especially Chris Issac-y tonight. As I think I said last week, he is a fine singer, but I’m not sure he will go the distance given the talent level of his competition. Anastasia says he was pitchy and looked scared and she’s worried he is going to get voted off the island, Bret says he likes the old Jody, and Phil says he is unique and he loves what he does.

OK, so now it is time for me to eat crow. I said last week that the person who would be voted off this week had a name that started with “J” and at this point I have clearly been shown to be WRONG. As was alluded to in the Cletus interview, could the voters really have taken Tamika’s comments to be so offensive that they chose not to vote for her even though she is one of the most talented people in this season’s show? I notice that we still have quite a bit of time left in this show, so the producers are clearly going to leave us hanging here for a bit.

We then cut back to Cletus the Pirate. I am better prepared for him this time, as I have made a pinhole in a piece of paper and use it to project his image onto another piece of paper, thereby saving my retinas from permanent damage. Cletus asks the two lip-nibbling contestants if they thought the comments from last week have anything to do with being in the position of perhaps being voted off. They both look too stunned to put together a full sentence and mumble sincerely nice things about each other and hug and then hug some more.

Now the next performance is the real reason we’ve all tuned in tonight, as Bret Michaels sings a countrified version of “Every Rose Has Its Thorn”. It is truly stunning how many folks in the audience know every single word! I really really hope they reschedule his duet with LeAnn, a bluegrass version of “Unskinny Bop” next time perhaps? Good thing this is on USA Network as I don’t think Fox would have the stomach for that one either.

Then just as Erika Jo and Tamika are chewing the last of the gloss off of their lips, LeAnn finally comes back on stage with the magic envelope to put one of the women out of their misery. And it is…Tamika who is eliminated. She tries to smile for the camera and manages to say ”I’ve had a lot of fun”. Then she heads off stage for what one must guess is a well-deserved good cry. It is unfortunate that she was booted this early, as I think she is more talented than several of the remaining singers.

But the show must go on, and the visibly relieved Erika Jo sings her original “You Don’t Care”, (a play on words about someone who really does care, not that you care), and brings down the house. Bret says she was great, Anastasia says “you surprised me, you were great” and even goes so far as to utter the phrase “you complete me” (yikes!), and Phil says that was her best performance yet.

So after getting it all wrong this week, here are my predictions for next week. I still think Jason Meadows and Erika Jo are pretty untouchable at this point. Jayron and Justin seem to have amassed a dependable fan base that will likely keep them alive for the next week or two, which leaves us with Jenny and Jody as the two contestants most at risk to be eliminated next week.

Next Tuesday’s special treat will be a performance by the original Nashville Star, Buddy Jewell. See you then!

You can contact Lisa with questions, comments, or general gabbery at lisa@realityshack.com.

A Continuation of Pre-Production – Project Greenlight, Episode 3

Nine weeks until production begins, and they’re still working on getting a budget. Rona comes to visit them in New York for a face-to-face meeting and unfortunately, he’s just not ready to commit more than three million dollars. Leahy thinks it’s impossible. “We aren’t going to spend five million dollars on this movie,” Rona tells them how it is for this film. Dimension is not ready to commit to the project for many factors. Gulager is up for the challenge, even if nobody has the confidence in him to do it. “In the past, Dimension has stepped up,” Leahy explains, keeping his hopes up.

Chris Moore and Gulager go out to lunch for the day. “I was taking him to lunch to really try to convince him to share his vision with the rest of the people in the movie,” Moore advises him. “Figuring how to talk in a group is a skill,” he says, and he offers to help Gulager learn the skills to talk in a group. He wants to help him in any way he can, and he lets John knows this. “That is not good for the marketing of the movie,” Moore says of the nepotism involved. “I’m still the contest guy,” Gulager laughs. “I want to be the first guy who makes movie on Project Greenlight.”

With eight weeks to go, and another draft of the script, Rona calls in to discuss it. “The more he knows the vision, the more money we’ll get,” Leahy notes. Rona was advised to watch some movies by Melton and Dunstan, and he did, which gave him more of vision of what the film will be. Gulager even takes part, gaining some confidence, and talking to Rona about the film. “I got my balls busted in the last meeting,” John says. This meeting, however, he steps up to the plate and shows he can lead. All the producers are smiling, and it’s a much better view of them and their confidence in him as a director, a contrast to the last meeting with Rona on the speakerphone. “Right now, John Gulager isn’t the concern of Andrew Rona,” Leahy says.

Now, we’re done to seven weeks until shooting begins, and they’re still working on casting. They are working on picking a Director of Photography and Production Designer, along with a First Assistant Director. He has to go around and interview a bunch of people to find the best people to work with him on his vision for Feast. Casting is still up in the air, though.

“I’m not sure John and Michelle are clicking. They have very different approaches,” Leahy explains. John believes Michelle has already casted the film behind his back, without his approval, and he’s a bit upset about it. He still wants his family in it, despite the misgivings of the entire cast. “They should just run everything by me before contacting someone,” he says, “They just don’t do that.”

“I sort of get John,” Michelle explains, “I’m giving him as much information as he can take.” She tells her assistant to give him anything he wants, to inundate him as much as possible so that he possibly gets it.

Now, they’re auditioning the roll of the heroine, which is the central role of the Feast. John wants a strong woman who can kick some butt, as he says, but so far he doesn’t seem to really like anybody. One of the girls from the O.C., Navi Rawat, comes in to audition for the role and blows everyone away, except John, who is still skeptical.

In a final budget meeting, Rona confirms that only three million dollars plus all the fees, is the final number. “We aren’t going to tell you what to do,” Rona says, but he refuses to give more money. Leahy makes a pitch to go to another studio and get one to come in as a partner, and Rona gives the thumbs up for the attempt, saying that’s what makes him a good producer. We see Gulager was listening in on the meeting, unbeknownst to anybody by hiding outside the room. Soisson believes by dropping a week out of the film will make it horrible, but unfortunately, it’s the only thing they can do to make the entire film be it good, bad or ugly.

They begin to cut down the cost of the movie. They first decided to make grandma the bartender. Then, they approach Tunnicliffe about the monsters, which have lost much money. “We want to salvage what we can of the two major parts of the movie, the set and the monsters,” Soisson says.

Leahy called a radio station and heard that the owners of the Sacramento Kings were on and wanted to get into the movie industry. So, he calls the radio station and gets through to talk to them, and tries to get them to sign on to finance the film. Then, they just hung up on them and made fun of the fact that people ask them for money. He doesn’t think they realized who they were talking to and calls them for real from the studio again.

Wes Craven and John go out to dinner one night, at a private table. Craven wants to give him all his experience in one night, if possible, to help him out to make the best film he can for his first film. “John’s really going to have his hands full,” Craven says.

That night, Gulager’s girlfriend reads a script with him, because he wants to cast her as the role of Tuffy. She was in his submission for Project Greenlight and did a great job, but the casting director isn’t going to be happy about this, nor will anybody else involved in the project. John and Michelle joke about casting their family members, but they seem to be getting along a bit. “I really want this role as Tuffy,” Diane, his girlfriend, muses. Nobody seems to be that impressed at first, but when she does the angry scene shot, Michelle is actually really impressed. “She was actually very good,” Michelle notes. “Do I still think they’re going to fight it? Yes.”

Krista Allen came in to audition for Tuffy, too. They are really excited about her being there, as she’s highly desirable for the role. She’s very much into the process, asking for feedback, and direction. John seemed impressed, but they are worried he will still want to cast his girlfriend, even if she isn’t the best actress. “I still like Diane,” he says.

Rona comes into a conference over the phone and talks about the casting. Soisson said, “It should be whoever is best for the role.” However, “I want these guys in the film. When I like someone, it doesn’t matter, is that the deal?” he asks. He keeps debating this nepotism ideal, because he believes in it, even though it’ll look horrible for the studio. “Your credibility is shot,” Soisson explains. “Rona looked at all the tapes.” Then, tells him he didn’t like any of his family and that he wouldn’t approve any of them. “Why did they pick me?” John asks. “If they don’t think the director should be involved in casting, that’s just asinine.” John continues to defend himself, but he’s clearly outnumbered. He just doesn’t get how casting works and Soisson gets very angry about it. He feels he is serving his own interests, which he shouldn’t be as a first-time director, instead of serving the movie. As a temper tantrum, he begins to rip down his family’s pictures from his wall. “The Gulagers don’t have to do this, and I can do this alone. If they think it’ll make it easier for me, if they think it’ll make the project better, they’re probably wrong,” he whines.

John goes out with his family for dinner. He claims those working with him don’t respect him. His father tells him that that’s just the way it is in the industry. They discuss nepotism, his father even taking notes, and they overall don’t get it. John won’t back down though, and he thinks it’s personal, but it isn’t. He comes back to the studio, and tells Leahy that he wants to file to Los Angeles to meet Bob and Harvey Weinstein – owners of Dimension – to plea for his family to be in the movie. “I want you to direct this movie if those people aren’t in it,” Leahy says.

Rona is called and told about the plan. Soisson can barely get it out, it’s ridiculous. “There’s just no way this is happening,” Rona laughs. Gulager comes in, the producers are laughing. Rona says if Gulager leaves New York, Dimension will shut down the production permanently.

Leahy goes to meet the Maloof brothers to see if they will become partners for Feast. They sit down with them and pitch the movie for real this time. Sean Bailet, who works for Live Planet, has an established relationship with the brothers and introduced Chris Moore and the rest of the team to the project. They all work hard to pitch the film. “We’re trying to shoot a forty day project in twenty days,” Leahy notes. “I was very encouraged by the meeting. If we can get Maloof Motion Pictures involved with Feast, it could be huge.”

Chris Moore, Joel Soisson and Mike Leahy go out to lunch and joke about how they finally sat down with the Maloof brothers. They then discussed the casting issue with John’s family and flying out to meet the studio executives. Moore can’t believe that John wants to do that, and tells them that if they ever repeat the conversation or bring it up again, he will fire Gulager on the spot.

Carpesomediem is an aspiring freelance writer from Lancaster, Pa. who enjoys music, movies and writing about the way the world works; you can contact her at carpesomediem@realityshack.com to talk about this week’s episode or anything at all.

Go Away Green-Eyed Monster” – Starting Over, 03-30-05

“Go Away Green-Eyed Monster” – Starting Over, 03-30-05

By: Cori Linder

If you have watched any episode of “The Bachelor,” you’ll see first-hand what jealousy can do to a girl—basically, transform her from a snow white princess to a green-eyed monster…who likes to bite, chew, and then spit you out.

On that note, Tess said she’s feeling good about her personal progress and feels more connected with the girls. She thinks, however, that there might be some issues with the other ladies. Geez…you think?

Group Meeting with Dr. Stan: Let’s meet the green-eyed monster, Dr. Stan says. Candy says she’s jealous of Rachel’s smile while Allison is jealous of everybody’s health. Rachel is jealous of others’ ties to their families, and Vanessa measures herself against other people in terms of looks. But, the key question seems to be: What do you think people are jealous of you? Tess says she’s not jealous of anybody, explaining she’s “struggled” with people being jealous of her physical attributes. Yeah right, think the other girls.

Allison meets with Iyanla to discover and face her “squatters,” which are her mental lies. She has to create faces on head statues to visually represent her squatters, such as worthlessness, and then call forth the specific feeling. She hates the fact she feels so worthless.

Dr. Stan meets with Jessica who, he says, has very little self-worth. She says that the thing she loved the most about gymnastics was the crowd’s applause. He tells her he will take her to the gym to see what is joyful to her, without a coach or crowd. Have fun and do some self-discovery, he says with a smile.

Meanwhile, Tess is walking on a treadmill and is trying to cope with everyone’s supposed jealousy of her. Let’s have a moment of silence for Tess.


Rachel calls Karen, her mother’s friend, who was supposed to raise her as specified in the will. Karen discloses she was heartbroken that Rachel didn’t live with her and that her mother’s wishes weren’t carried out. I immediately like Karen because it is so obvious she loved both Rachel and her mom. Karen and Rachel’s mom had explained all this to the rest of the family but still the relatives didn’t follow their wishes. It is sad to think how much happier Rachel’s life could have been if only the will had been carried out. Aunt Ellen…you have lots of explaining to do.

At the gym, Jessica is anxious about performing as the “overweight failure of a gymnast.” “Can you find joy in gymnastics without a crowd?” he asks. She performs a routine and has already critiqued it. She says that the joy is in fixing her performance. He watched her performance and is impressed. Don’t you just love Dr. Stan? He tells her that he uses gymnastics as a drive for perfection in a way.

Our moment of silence has seemed to help Tess, for she is now putting herself down to Bethany for having a less-than-perfect GPA in college. At least you got to go to college, says Candy. You’re jealous! thinks Tess about Candy.

Rachel is still on the phone with Karen, and I feel so bad for her. Karen said she and her two children would weep all the time because Rachel was living elsewhere. Rachel says her relatives wouldn’t let Rachel live with Karen because she would have developed a relationship with her. (Don’t you just want to have a “fierce conversation” with the relatives?) Karen offers to let Rachel live with them.

Bethany joins Jessica at the gym because Bethany always finds the joy in what she’s doing. After seeing Bethany enjoy herself, Jessica starts to realize the joy of gymnastics.

No longer on the phone, Rachel is very “pissed-off” and feels the anger rising. She missed out on the opportunity of living with people who would have treated her like a daughter. I’m angry, and I don’t even know her.

Iyanla meets with Allison again and looks at the squatters. Instead of walking around with her happy face, Allison’s assignment will be to wear her Worthless Face everywhere. Whenever somebody talks to her, she must put the face in front of her own and say, “I’m worthless.”

Rachel definitely needs Iyanla. They meet together, and Rachel relays the conversation she had with Karen. Rachel breaks down, and I just want to hug her. “Aunt” Ellen has never apologized for her actions or taken responsibility for them. Rachel needs to confront her aunt, which might push their relationship past the point of no return. Good, I say.

Oh no!!! We won’t be able to see this conversation with her aunt until later!

Stay tuned…

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