Thursday, June 28, 2007

Studio Sucksty

I am live-blogging a show that refuses to die. Back in the fall I thought shunning Studio 60 in my brain would be enough for the ratings to go down, but now I see it's time for a written review. I'm actually not live-blogging in the traditional sense--where you watch something and then comment immediately after it happens. It's on mute in the background, and my critique is based on how bad I feel every time I’ve watched it in the past.

Next week tune in, turn the volume down, and read along. There’s nothing wrong with your television. All scenes are lit with a candle.

Quit Cheating on the Mom from Malcolm in the Middle
Bradley Whitford is pacing in a hospital. The girl he’s dating just had a baby, and she’s also on her death bed, just like in 1930. The fact that he's not allowed to smile, but also not allowed to be angry equals a level of drama I liken to a bowl of cold oatmeal…that turns out not to be oatmeal but wet paper towels.

Cut to Matthew Perry back at the Studio. (Cue the opening guitar riff of "I'll be there for you"). He prepares for this role by never sleeping. That’s how real producers look. And they lean their torso back in surprise while they’re hands are in their pockets. All the time.

Tum-ta-tum-tum TUMS!
The show’s "featured player" who I'll call Ears was once arrested for speeding out of town, and they built an entire show around it. The only time they left the sheriff's office was for a shot in the diner from all antacid commercials. Tonight, as in the speeding episode, they're bringing up his brother the soldier. Bro's always hanging by a thread and yet we never see his picture or see him calling home with a helicopter chopping noisily overhead. It's less of an anti-war statement, and more of a reality t.v. move. "People won’t be bored if they’re sad…how about a relative in The War? Let's not give him a name or a face. It might become too real. He'll be like the banker on Deal or No Deal."

You Got to Have Faith a Faith a Faith-a
Matt and Harriet! Will they argue a little or a lot tonight? Will he bring up the affair she ALMOST had with a baseball player (acted superbly by an extra from Gilmore Girls)? He is such a brilliant writer, and she’s such a crazy Christian. It will never work. Fun fact: every time they fight Kristin Chenoweth gets a Tony.

Fight the Power
Celebrations: black man with real black issues (BMW-RBI) gets a plotline tonight. DL Hughley is a seasoned, hardworking, funny stand-up. But do you remember how his cameo on Fresh Prince could have done without the serious scene?

"Dang Abbi, can't you keep that on the DL?"
He likens his reprimand from wealthy white bosses to slavery. I wouldn't call this playing the race card so much as playing a giant race poster and dancing on top of it. "Why should I try the watermelon martini? Oh, I get it. Because MY PEOPLE just love us some wattamellon, is that it?! I'll have you know I'm allergic to artificial fruit flavors. I'll take my Stoli straight, and you are not coming home with me tonight Persephone!"

Time is of the Essence
Sadly, the rest of the cast was dismissed when it was discovered they could actually do impressions and be funny. If they include humor, they won’t have time to show Matt staring at the countdown clock.

Gosh Darn You!
They promised me in the beginning of the episode that Amanda Peete would die. They even refrained from showing her, implying maybe she's busy shooting a romantic comedy with Josh Hartnett or Sean Connery. But lo', at the end of the night, it looks like she's gonna pull through. And the co-worker she came to know in her first month on the job is proposing and wants to adopt the baby she just delivered! The baby appears to be eight weeks old, and mom wakes up from a coma covered in makeup. What, no boob job?

Read this whole post out loud in one breath to get an idea of the pace of the dialogue.

Studio 60, you have some work to do. Dental work. Because I've pulled all my teeth out to distract myself from da script. Make me a sandwich and cast the guy from Grey’s Anatomy. Then maybe we can talk again.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Abbi Mama Drama

Mom's in town.
Abbi Crutchfield & Mom

For most people that means, "Great. Now I have to deal with endless questions about my safety, an assessment of my diet (including inventory of my fridge) and extra shoes in my doorway."

For me it means all that plus, "I hope she remembers not to upstage me."

Abbi Crutchfield & Mom

Talk about being supportive of the comedy career.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Summer Blowout at The Living Room

Did you have a good weekend? Good. Want to have a better one? Come to The Living Room this Friday! As I mentioned we've been putting it on non-stop for a year, and now it's time for a rest. So to celebrate getting to relax, we're having a Summer Blowout where we've invited all of the gut-busting talent we could find:

Mike Dobbins (one of the most original comedians of my generation. Cracks me up every time)
Carla Rhodes (rock n' roll goddess, accomplished beyond her years in quips and quism. Ventriloquism)
Liam McEaneany (comedy central, VH1, solid on stage and we're proud to have him)
Luke Thayer (practically perfect in every way)
Lisa Kaplan (her woe will reel you in and get you giggling)
The Straight Men (one members' work has been recognized on The Tonight Show, and the whole ensemble busts their butts to make their offbeat sketches seem awkwardly real)

I am stoked to see these people!! Of course I plan to bring my bag of tricks so I hope that all nine of my regular readers can make it out. And to the ones who keep commenting, "Please help. Your site is the only one that is not blocked. I am a child laborer who has sneaked into my boss's office while he takes his hourly nap. I pray that you will send authorities and rescue us." I say, finish those sweaters and get over to my show!

Here's a picture to give you some indication of how stellar it is.

Truffle Shuffle yourself over there.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Same Goes for Dixie

It doesn't matter if you're thinking of a Bugs Bunny cartoon. Whenever you start whistling, "We're In The Money", people judge.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

One Year of Living it Up!

One year anniversary that doesn't matter:

One year anniversary that DOES matter:

It's small, but click on it to see what this homemade flier has to offer! If you know the show, you know we're all about homemade signs.

All two-time Funniest Comedian of All Time Award winners* go head to head and toe to toe and butt to butt to compete for the deluxe championship belt!

Keith Alberstadt (National Lampoon)
Carolyn Castiglia (VH1)
Jiwon Li (Check Your Cool)
Matt McCarthy (The Matt and Katina Show)

with a video by Jeff Ceruli (The Jeff Show)
and a sketch by Perv Griffin!

See you this Friday!
*Jacqueline Novak is also eligible for this title. But she ain't one to brag.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Sue Balls

Sue Ball had a great performance and line-up at her variety show The Rochelle Show yesterday. The title of this blog is a play on her name. As in Sue has a ball when she's on stage, Sue's got a pair of testicles, Sue be ballin' shot callin' 20 inch rims on her Impala. Whatever you want. The point is this: she kicks up dust on a topic that I hope is rocking the feminism courses in colleges across America...

Anybody have any thoughts on "women in comedy?"...I really could care less about comedy as liberation as much as comedy as a way to crack myself and others up. I know there is a bias. And I'm not looking to overcome it. When I can't keep a straight face cause I'm crackin' myself up onstage, I'm not worried about whether Norman Mailer or Charles Bukowski, or f*** it, Johnny Depp find me complex, or sensual or compelling or confusing or Winona Ryder-esqe or worthy of a liquor binge or a painting or a poem, or a nervous breakdown.

Step into my 8-foot tall, iridescent and undulating circle of parallel universe travel. In this world, all women refuse to give interviews on women in comedy. Reporters are at a loss and just interview female comedians to talk about their work.

In our current world, however, listening to women complain about singling out "Women in Comedy" makes me think of the minoritiest minority performer (a homosexual, disabled little person with vitiligo? An 800lb blind leper with a British accent?) insisting people acknowledge their comedic skills first. "So I cough up gold. SO WHAT? I have a joke about pita pockets that will change your life."

I'm not telling ladies to stop seeking a comparable foothold in the biz, I just don't want to deny my past. We are achieving something that a few generations prior we could not have, so why pretend as if we were always equal? Just because we're beyond slavery doesn't mean blacks should forget it ever happened. Then again, when interviewed, we also should not have to hear, "Let's talk about how unusual it is that you're not a slave anymore."

Women are glorious. Comedy is glorious. Let's celebrate the union.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Seems You Can't Be Sure Of Anything Anymore

Not many years ago People Magazine reported that Soleil Moon Frye had a daughter. She named her Poet Sienna Rose in the hopes that a triple name would pave the way for television stardom…or at least infamy as an assassin. The Curly Comedy team got a hold of an exclusive picture of the child. Quite frankly, we find it a little disturbing.

Wait for it.