Hello, everyone. It’s been nearly a month, but I haven’t completely deserted this blog. A number of things have come up since then, and I’d like to address those.
* Around the time of my last post, another game show blogger published a profanity-laden post in his blog about someone that disturbed him. That someone was me. I was grossly inaccurate and I apologize. This other person and I hadn’t gotten along very well, and I dished it out. He dished it right back out to me, and I was upset about it. I deserved what I got, and I apologize.
It leads me to think about why I write this blog. Originally, it was an assignment for a college course, and I just expanded it and kept it going because it was free and I enjoyed what I did. I am fully aware my blog gets “literally gets 0.0001% the traffic of” his. I regularly read this other man’s blog, although that may change in the near future. I thought I really would have to measure up to him. But it turns out I don’t.
You readers out there, you know why you want to read this. You know why you come here. I’ll just come out and say that my blog is still up because it’s a hobby and it adds something to my resume/CV. And I enjoy writing. It’s something I’m good at. Cory Anotado has his reasons for why he continues operating his blog, and I have mine. We both love game shows, and that’s probably all that really matters in the end.
Now, on with the game shows.
* Recently, I had the opportunity to watch Sing Your Face Off, a program I had mentioned in an earlier post. ABC rolled with it and made it camp all the way. The regular judges included Darrell Hammond (from Saturday Night Live) and 80s singer Debbie Gibson. The third spot was filled by, in episodic order: David Alan Grier, RuPaul, Carnie Wilson, Richard Simmons, Tom Arnold, and Carmen Electra.
The five contestants were actress Lisa Rinna, Toronto Raptors small forward Landry Fields, comedian Jon Lovitz, former hard rocker Sebastian Bach, and 14-year-old Disney Channel star China Anne McClain. Yes, you read that correctly. A Disney Channel star. Yes, ABC, we get it. You’re owned by Disney.
Now, the premise of the competition is that these celebrities are assigned music icons. They then spend a week learning a song and choreography. The catch is, they have to pass themselves off as that artist. They also spend that week getting any necessary make up, outfits, accessories, etc. needed for them to look like the artist they are performing as. They then perform the song and are given an individual score by each of the judges ranging on a scale from 1 to 10, for a maximum possible total of 30; except in episode 4, when scores were doubled. (The lowest individual score I ever saw any of the judges give a contestant was a 7, and that was only given three times in the entire first episode, and twice by the guest judge. David Alan Grier was the only honest judge in the series.)
To see who “sung their face off” as whom, let’s take a look at the chart, shall we? (courtesy of Wikipedia)
|Celebrity||Week 1||Week 2||Week 3||Week 4||Week 5||Week 6|
|China Anne McClain||Rihanna||Tina Turner||Michael Jackson||Alicia Keys||James Brown||Whitney Houston|
|Lisa Rinna||Dolly Parton||Britney Spears||Katy Perry||Justin Bieber||Cyndi Lauper||Madonna|
|Landry Fields||Lionel Richie||Pitbull||Enrique Iglesias||Nicki Minaj||MC Hammer||Little Richard|
|Jon Lovitz||Elton John||Luciano Pavarotti||Billy Idol||Meat Loaf||Roy Orbison||Redfoo (Special Performance)|
|Sebastian Bach||Adam Levine||Lady Gaga||Willie Nelson||Freddie Mercury||—||Sky Blu (Special Performance)|
And that’s not all. After all five (or four) had performed that week, the celebrities gave each other three bonus points (obviously not themselves). Let’s see the scores (again from Wikipedia).
|Singer||Place||1||2||3||4||Overall Score Weeks 1-4||5||6|
|China Anne McClain||1||34||28||35||71||168||36||2|
Yes, China Anne won the whole thing. Carmen Electra just showed up for a paycheck when it came to the final tie-breaking vote. China got a trophy for her six-week ordeal. ABC, we get that you’re owned by Disney, but really?
Now what makes this series notable is that ABC ran two “weeks” each Saturday night for three weeks, paired up with Bet on Your Baby at 8. This was recorded in 2013, it even says it in the copyright. Makes you wonder, doesn’t it?
What made me wonder for a long time was the fact that John Barrowman never revealed what was being played for until the last episode. I surely thought they would be playing for cash for their charities. That disturbed me that they weren’t. But instead, it’s just like Dancing with the Stars. I made that realization during the night of the last two episodes.
As for the performances themselves, personally, I thought none of them were very convincing. I mean, it’s fun and all, but Sebastian Bach as Lady Gaga? Really? I wasn’t convinced. I’ll let some of the performances speak for themselves. For the sake of time, I’ll post four of what I thought best illustrate my point.
Now, for all the faults I’ve pointed out, I must admit it was quite entertaining. It was a very guilty pleasure. The theme is quite catchy, and some of it was just plain fun. Great Performances at the Met it clearly isn’t, but it’s a fun little timewaster for Saturday night.
40 years ago, ABC’s promotional campaign was “What you see on ABC this fall, you’ll be talking about tomorrow.” And that’s the case this time. People are likely to be discussing this. I was just discussing this today.
* Speaking of ABC, tonight is the premiere of Rising Star, based on an Israeli format HaKokhav HaBa (“The Next Star”). It’s your average run-of-the-mill singing competition, but instead of celebrities (in this case Brad Paisley, Kesha, and Ludacris) judging, the audience at home judges.
Here’s what ABC says about it:
“Rising Star completely reinvents the traditional singing competition as—for the first time ever—the audience has the final say in real time. During the performances, viewers vote via an App to determine if the singer will advance in the competition. If the voting reaches a certain threshold, the performer moves on.”
Bad news for people like me: You can only vote using the Rising Star mobile app (which is available for free from the Apple App Store, Google Play Store, or from the Windows Store.) No laptop or desktop voting. Well, that’s disappointing, to say the least.
The only thing that rubs the salt in the wound a little is the fact that Josh Groban is hosting. Yes, that Josh Groban. The “You Raise Me Up” Josh Groban. If he breaks out into “You Raise Me Up” just to get a rise out of the audience, so help me I’ll change the channel. But when I think about it, who is more qualified to host a singing competition than a singer? And what qualifies Ludacris (a rapper) to be a celebrity expert in a singing competition? Doesn’t he just rap? (Yes, I am white, and I’m not ashamed of it.)
Anyway, here’s how to operate the app.
Have fun, y’all. I’ll be watching.
* And finally, speaking of music, we must take note of a recent loss in both the music and entertainment industry. Casey Kasem, better known as the voice of “Shaggy” and the host of American Top 40, passed away on Father’s Day at the age of 82 after a long struggle with his health and family. He was struggling with his health, his wife was struggling to keep the kids away. I grew up watching Scooby-Doo, and Shaggy was one of my favorites. However, it wasn’t until later that I started listening to his classic AT40s. The man, much like Dick Clark before him, was a legend in the music industry. Aside from that one incident in 1985 regarding a dedication for a dead dog and some unsightly promo bloopers, Casey was a very professional man. I’ve heard nothing but good things about him. I have two things to honor him. First, his run as a bachelor on the original Dating Game:
And finally, some classic 80s music from American Top 40. Rest in peace, Mr. Kasem. Say hi to Dick for us.
Until next we meet, keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars.