Chapter 11: COVID Chronicles

April 8, 2020

By Karen

Day 28

Broke and Indebted

Best news today: Bernie Sanders dropped out. Now Democrats can go after Trump with both feet. Just hope Bernie can convince his Bernie Bros to lose the butt-hurt and vote for Biden instead of being self-defeating dumbasses like they were in 2016 and staying home or voting for Trump out of spite.

Caught this rare glimpse of Roc not bullying Max. It lasted about two seconds after I snapped the camera…

So far, so good with the grocery delivery yesterday; I have no symptoms of anything. But a follow-up on that: I sent feedback through Aldi’s website about Patrice’s great work and today received a “case number” and instructions to log onto Instacart.

Since it seemed my message got tossed into the “My bologna was slimy” pile, I sent a tweet to Aldi while collecting names and addresses at corporate.

But then Aldi tweeted back and assured me their peeps read all messages and forward them to the proper departments and stores. I’m believing them, but it’s likely my path will cross Patrice’s again one day, so if they’re lying and she gets no kudos, I’ll find out.

As a sitcom connoisseur, last night I realized CBS and NBC are running shows with identical premises head-to-head on Thursdays at 9:30.

NBC’s is called Indebted and its greatest/only asset is Fran Drescher (The Nanny). Here’s their promo blurb…

“Young parents Dave and Rebecca are ready to reclaim their lives after years of diapers and sleepless nights. However, things take an unexpected turn when Dave’s parents show up unannounced and broke, leaving Dave with no choice but to open the door to the two people who gave him everything. But these boomerang parents aren’t great with boundaries, and the question of who’s parenting whom quickly becomes blurred.”

If it somehow gets a second season, it wouldn’t surprise me if Drescher is the only survivor. When it comes to making comedy, she’s chewing through the cast, even though all she’s given to work with is the hackneyed Jewish mother schtick.

On CBS is Broke and I don’t know any of the actors. However, they are, without exception, delightful. I’ve paraphrased the CBS blurb…

“A single suburban mother is shocked when her estranged sister, her sister’s outrageously wealthy, big-hearted Latino husband and his fiercely loyal assistant/driver/friend land on her doorstep needing a place to live after the couple’s money dries up. Though class differences separate the women, and the size of the house will test the limits of family ties, the bond of sisterhood might be the catalyst they need to restore their relationship.”

Broke has the advantage of a brilliant little nerd whose scenes with the gorgeous Latino husband are unbearably charming. And the writing is wonderful.

If you get a chance to check them out, I’d like to hear your take.

Matt Lauer Gets a Taste of Karma

September 21, 2012

By Adele

Folks, remember, you read it here first: The Today Show kicked out Ann Curry for hurting the ratings, yet, as I predicted, that snowball’s still rolling downhill.

We switched to CBS This Morning the day after Ann left, but we still start the day with local news on NBC. Then Karen waits until Today begins and Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie come on screen before she pointedly changes the channel. She says it still feels good, too.

Apparently, our defection isn’t the only one, because Good Morning America has been eating Today’s lunch lately.

So now who are they going to blame? Is Al Roker next in line for a pink slip for not making the weather entertaining enough?

The New York Post reports Lauer has turned into an “anchor animal,” trying to rule the Today roost like an executive producer, and his IQ popularity numbers are down 25%.

Lauer claims he’s open to new ideas for the show. He should have read the slew of ideas I supplied right before Ann Curry left.

But now, the only idea that may actually work is to say “buh-bye” to Matt Lauer. Maybe Katie Couric could use a gofer on her new show.

Ann Curry Shows NBC What Class Is

June 28, 2012

By Adele

This morning Ann Curry announced her departure from Today, and they actually let her speak for a whole 2:10 uninterrupted minutes, which may be a record.

It happened at about 8:55 a.m., after Ann had gamely logged her 2 final hours as co-host.

Ann said she’s staying with NBC to do news, and it’s unfortunate the ingrate network will still reap the benefit of her journalistic skills.

Speaking of journalism, Today is right on track to realize it was already down the crapper long before Ann became co-host. Immediately after Ann’s heartfelt farewell and a commercial break, they switched gears by launching Savannah Guthrie’s hour with cake-decorating with Martha Stewart.

On the other hand, earlier they had let Al Roker talk to popular authors Charlaine Harris (the Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood series) and Janet Evanovich about summer reading, and let them mention 6 or 8 books apiece, although the last few got one-word recommendations for the usual reason — more commercials.

(Evanovich recommended Anthony Bourdain’s Medium Raw. She said she loves him, but hates him for being a better writer than she is.)

It was a feeble attempt to raise the bar on content, but too little, too late.

I hope Ann is just staying on while she considers other opportunities, and the day comes soon when she leaves NBC’s stinking corpse to rot.

(We’re also pissed at NBC for stupidly canceling Kathy Bates’ Harry’s Law, its second most-watched drama, behind Smash, but ahead of Law & Order: SVU.)

Talent and quality mean absolutely nothing to those people. They’re worse than Travel Channel.

Meanwhile, CBS, here we come!

‘Today Show’ Producers Have a Death Wish

June 26, 2012

By Adele

It’s like watching a slow-mo train wreck on the Today Show. Ann Curry somehow manages to carry on with grace while NBC execs continue to crap on her good name rather than take responsibility for their own failures in the ratings.

And now it seems they’re seriously considering the vowel-challenged Hoda Kotb to be Matt Lauer’s new sidekick.

REALLY??!! Can anybody even pronounce “Kotb?”

Thanks to NBC, Hoda’s image is of a middle-aged mid-morning drunk who dresses like she thinks she’s a hot 25-year-old.

Just the type to play Matt Lauer’s straight man — NOT.

And where does that leave Hoda’s booze-buddy, Kathy Lee Gifford? Will they pull Regis Philbin and his creepy perm out of retirement and prop him up beside her?

The people at Good Morning America must be dancing for joy. NBC is as hard-pressed to find a decent morning host within its ranks as the Republicans are for a presidential candidate who doesn’t make you hurl hairballs.

Giving Hoda more prominence will be the kiss of death to the Today Show — and it will be well-deserved.

Ann Curry Not Today Show’s Problem

June 25, 2012

By Adele

I’ve been watching the Today Show since I was a kitten, and it’s been going downhill for years. But this hatchet job on Ann Curry is the last straw. Can you say…

Hello, Good Morning America!

You know things are bad when I’m driven into the arms of Oprah’s BFF, Gayle King.

Reportedly, they’re paying Ann Curry $10 million to take a mid-contract hike, blaming her for Today’s sagging ratings.

But the NBC suits seem conflicted on how Ann is single-handedly destroying the show. They do agree she makes a dandy scapegoat.

To stroke Matt Lauer’s massive ego, Ann has dumbed it down and smiled through cringe-worthy drivel they keep throwing at her. I’d like to see her go back to serious news. She’s more of a Christiane Amanpour type anyway.

And here are some suggestions for NBC to salvage Today

  • Cut the inter-cast banter. They should take a backseat to the news.
  • Tell the cast to SHUT UP and let guests answer interview questions (Meredith Vieira was the worst; nobody could get a word in).
  • Present actual news. Too often, what comprises a “story” is nothing but reiterated teaser fluff. You make viewers wait and wait…and wait to FINALLY see stories, but too often our reaction is, “That’s IT?”
  • Speaking of teasers, cut the BS “Up next, but first…,” and “Straight ahead, after this…” The delays are maddening, and you usually pull a bait and switch and don’t even show the next freaking story next. Say a story is “coming right up” and mean it, damn it.
  • Don’t imply you’ve got a live body there, and then air some stale canned footage from last night’s Brian Williams newscast.
  • Accept that 2-3 minutes is not enough time for an interview. When you cut everybody off in mid-sentence for more stupid commercials, you reveal your priorities—and they’re not with interesting content.
  • Screen out everyday yahoos who speak in monosyllables. They’re the interviews from hell.
  • Cut the stupid, obvious questions. We KNOW how somebody who’s lost a limb or a child or survived a catastrophe feels. You don’t need to ask.
  • Just say no to celebrities in their own minds, like Octomom, Kate Gosselin, and the Kardashians. They’re only “famous” because faux-news organizations like you keep them alive.
  • Discontinue cooking segments unless the chefs have enough time to actually cook a recipe viewers can follow.
  • Fire your panel of so-called “professionals” Nobody gives a flying f**k what Star Jones or Donny Deutsch think about anything.
  • Cut that hour with Kathy Lee Gifford and Hoda whatsits. They give washed-up, middle-aged drunks a bad name.

Ann Curry, take the money and run. You were too good for those self-centered rat-bastards. When GMA mops up in the next ratings sweep using Today as a Swiffer, you’ll have the last laugh.

A Cat’s Advice to Jay Leno

January 19, 2010

By Yul

Any “comedian” who needs the cover of darkness and a semi-conscious audience to be funny is a loser, so I have no dog in the fight NBC started between Jay Leno and Conan O’Brien. But like everybody else, I’ve been watching.

Conan O’Brien gets 3 tails up for his feline reaction to NBC’s treachery. Instead of licking their hand and meekly letting them kick him past midnight, he’s outta there.

Jay Leno doesn’t wash as the innocent victim. OK, maybe NBC did yank him off the Tonight Show and set him up to fail with a more-alert audience at 10 p.m. But Leno letting Conan go down and grabbing Tonight back is just two wrongs not making a right.

Sure, Conan will reap millions, but that’s what happens in a breach of contract. He’d be a schmuck to say, “OK, NBC, forget our agreement and let’s just part friends.”

Leno’s saying Conan is a “great guy.” Not good enough.

Leno should “retire.” It’s not as if he needs the job.

NBC’s clueless suits have made many bad decisions and dissed their talent. They deserve to scramble to fill a now-empty time slot.

I suggest a new format. Instead of having some jerk deliver lame jokes and chit-chat, they could murder someone in the first 10 minutes. Then guests would solve the crime and try the perp. They could call it Law & Order: Tonight.

Even though I’ll probably never watch him no matter where he goes, I wish Conan O’Brien good luck.

Leno, grow a spine. Go away. Write a book. Then make your triumphant “comeback” to TV in a few years.

%d bloggers like this: