Xtra Bacon

A Requiem for 30 Rock: Top 10 Favorite Moments

Photobucket I am simultaneously exuberant and forlorn today, for tomorrow night marks the beginning of the end 30 Rock. On one hand, it's back! On the other...soon there will be no more Lemonisms. No more elitist one-liners from Jack. No more Kenneth...oh, the humanity!

So I thought the least I could do in light of this tragedy is compose a tribute to this glorious show by highlighting some of my favorite 30 Rock moments and/or episodes.

1) Everything Sunny All The Time Always

Easily my favorite episode. Avery and Jack's extreme patriotism, Margaret Cho as Kim Jong Il (best ever), Liz has an 90's montage scene in which she takes charge of her personal life and is thwarted by a plastic bag in a tree. So great.

Favorite Scene:

Avery: "And in food news, you've had enough to eat today. Now here with the weather, is Johnny Mountain." Kim Jong Il: "North Korea! Everything sunny all the time always! Good time! Beach party! Back to you Ayer-weep!" Avery: [clicks papers on desk and rolls eyes in exasperation]

2) "High-fivin' a million angels"

I loved this line so much I immediately named my next Facebook photo album after it. That's love, right there, right? I think it's the combination of the old-school implementation of the high five mixed with the sadness of the self-praise for your own terrible joke and/or mundane accomplishment. It's a quality Lemonism that in my opinion is underused in pop culture.

3) Donaghy Rivalries

I loved it any time Devon Banks showed up. Will Arnett is just great (except, apparently, at marriage--moment of silence please). They argue about trivial things and it brings so much joy to my heart. I love when Donaghy, usually so confident and skilled at negotiating deals and arguing, is reduced to simple comebacks. Perfectly exemplified in his confrontation with Kabletown CEO Hank Hooper's daughter, Kaylee, who is out to get his job:

Jack: You don't even like the ocean, do you? Kaylee Hooper: I hate the ocean! It's for tools! Jack: The ocean is awesome and for winners! You're for tools!

4) Liddy's birth in Canada

I'm Canadian (represent, Mandie Marie) by birth, so I like any good Canada joke (HIMYM also included). This one is chalk-full of them and Jack and Avery's refusal to accept Canadian ways of life.

There are a ton of great quotes from this episode, but if I had to choose one: Avery: "Are we not even making our own METH anymore? What is happening to this country?"

5) Kenneth's drunken speech at Grizz's wedding OR Kenneth explaining Secret Santa (toss-up)

Kenneth has endless priceless moments, but these two have to be the frontrunners. His pure innocence is displayed perfectly in his drunken speech at Grizz's wedding after being fired. If you haven't seen it, it's given in perfect drunk-speech fashion, set up as if he is going to tell off everyone now that he has the freedom and inhibition to say what he really feels, but instead he just reveals that at his core, he's the same Kenneth we all thought he was:

"You people you are my best friends, and I hope you get eeeeeverything you want in life. So kiss. my. face! I'll see you ALL in heaven!"

Another one of my favorite Kenneth moments is his attempt to explain Secret Santa: "…and then the person with the highest number gives the smallest gift to the tallest person! And if they want to switch, they cannot. UNLESS they do! Then everyone puts their head down except the murderer…wait, that's not right…"

6) Oprah

I love the direction they took Oprah's appearance in--that it's not Oprah at all but a "spunky little tween" Liz confused with Oprah during a comanapracil-induced fog. I also love that Oprah agreed to be on 30 Rock and that Tina Fey was doing about 8000 things at once when this taped (I've read Bossypants three times. Well, read it once, listened to Tina Fey read it twice.)

Favorite line: Liz: "Gotta go, I'z snittin' next to Barpo."

7) "Night Cheese"

This haunting melody, composed by none other than Elizabeth Mervalis Lemon, perfectly encapsulates her personality. It first appears when she is lounging in a "slanket" shoveling cheese into her mouth in the middle of the night, and Jack shows up at the door. She tries to pretend she was asleep, but Jack refutes: "I heard you singing. Night Cheese."

I also love this short scene because it reflects Jack and Liz's relationship so well. Extreme familiarity with no hint of sexuality whatsoever.

8) Queen of Jordan (1 & 2)

I adore these episodes of 30 Rock. If you haven't seen it, Queen of Jordan is a reality show featuring Tracy Jordan's wife, Angie's which Jack gives her, essentially to shut her up. Cast includes Angie's sassy hairdresser D'Fwan (naturally), a divorcee whose exploits her abusive past relationships for money and instigates drama, a chubby friend named Portia who secured the catchphrase, "Portia reads the papuhs!" and later, Tracy's little girl Virginia who Liz manages to offend. Oh, and briefly Angie's meth-addict nephew.

9) Dealbreakers Episode #0001

Liz Lemon filming the pilot of her talkshow "Dealbreakers." If you haven't seen this episode, stop what you're doing and go watch it. I can't even talk about it without ruining its greatness.

10) Leap Day

Once again, 30 Rock manages to make something a thing that wasn't a thing before. This elaborately-thought-out episode tells the story of Leap Day William and his tradition of trading candy for children's tears. Kenneth dresses up as Leap Day William, there's a movie starring Jim Carrey called Leap Dave Williams about Leap Day William, and everyone dresses in blue and yellow. Except Liz. Because she, like the rest of us, has never heard of Leap Day William. It is fantastic.

Sadly, (or awesomely?) I wrote almost all of this from memory. I've...seen these episodes a lot.

What's your favorite 30 Rock moment?

SNL Returns: The Highlights


Fall. Glorious fall. Crisp air, football, pumpkins, and most importantly, all our shows are back! [and there was much rejoicing]

Well, not all of them are back yet (ahem--30 Rock). But at least Saturday Night Live is!

Despite losing some heavy-hitters over the summer, I think SNL is in for a good season this year. Based on the first two episodes, I thought I'd share my top 5 favorite elements so far:

1. Jay Pharaoh's new prominence:

Admittedly, I thought he was in danger of not being asked back this season. He had a few great sketches with flawless impressions (see: Will Smith; Jay Z) in the earlier episodes last season, but they started using him less and less as the season went on. [For the record, I actually did enjoy his "attention teachers and students" sketch. Even though he laughed in pretty much the only sketch in which he was not doing an impression.]

I felt like he had a lot of potential though, and I hoped they wouldn't kick him to the curb just yet.

So when I found out he was going to take over Obama from Fred Armisen, my hope was renewed. I knew he would do a great job because he is fantastic with impressions, and let's be honest, at least he's the same ethnicity as the President (which is not to knock Fred Armisen's ability to play any ethnicity on the planet, much like Maya Rudolph).

I was right. His cold open the first episode was brilliant, and he's gotten to be in lot more sketches throughout the first two episodes than he was last season. I particularly liked the talk show sketch where he and Kenan played rappers talking about fashion. I'm excited to see where his SNL career goes.

2. Kate McKinnon.

Can we just talk about how much I love Kate McKinnon? She was in one or two sketches at the end of last season, and I thought she was great. But she has won me over already--if nothing else, her Mrs. Romney impression was hilarious. I think she could be the new Kristen Wiig-type cast member. I'd be okay with it.

3. Drunk Uncle

One of the only things more underrated than Bobby Moynihan is his character, Drunk Uncle. I don't usually see people talking about it online anywhere, but it's one of my favorite characters on SNL. It might be because I'm a millennial (or whatever they call us) and he says things like "are these peanuts free range?" making fun of our generation. But I think it is fantastic.

4. Weekend Update Thursdays

It's election year, and you know what that means…Weekend Update Thursdays! Sure, I don't follow any of the actual debates or interviews, but I do tune in to Seth Meyers on Thursday nights to see what funny things he has to say about them anyway. It's SNL in the middle of the week. You really can't go wrong. Pretty much the only good thing about election years is that SNL is even better.

5. Good musical guests.

First Frank Ocean (with John Mayer), then Mumford and Sons. They're on a roll. No complaints here. Muse is next, which I am also excited about. Maybe if they stack the lineup like this all season long, enough time will have passed so that we'll have forgotten that whole Lana Del Ray debacle. Here's hopin'.

I will say I miss Abby Elliott already. Huge bummer not having her there this season. I'm hoping my love for Kate makes up for it.

What's your favorite sketch or character so far this season?

Why Everyone Can't Be a Talent Show Judge

Okay, you guys, this is getting a little out of control. American Idol has been going on for a [long] while, and I understand they need to shake it up a little bit. That's fine. We did that with Kara, we did that with Ellen (yeah--remember that?), we did that with Steven Tyler, we did that with J.Lo. No more shaking it up.

We do not need this:


The worst part of this is that all other talent competitions are just throwing their hands in the air and saying, hm, why not, American Idol did it, and drawing rando names out of a hat to decide who their next judges will be.

Everyone can't be a judge on a televised talent show, okay? Otherwise no one would be actually doing their jobs.

I mean really. What is this? Is there no loyalty anymore? I want to know why none of these celebrities are staying for more than a year. [Except good ol' Randy, holdin' it down for yet another year, which I assume is only because he couldn't stand the idea of us having to stare at Enrique Iglesias' beauty mole and listen to his opinions on pitchy 18-year-olds for four months. He really does have our backs, you guys.] Just when we get used to judges and can say things like, "oh that Steven, he never says anything intelligible," they yank him out and throw in Nicki Minaj. Not okay.

And why is this all of a sudden a coveted career move? Let's talk about X Factor, for example. There was speculation for months on who the new judges would be, and one of them ended up being Britney Spears. BRITNEY freaking SPEARS.

She is arguably one of the most prominent pop culture icons of all time, and she's sitting behind a desk beside a rose-haired disney channel star watching people twirl flaming batons and whatnot. Come on. I get that she shaved her head that one time and married a guy named Federline, and she does currently make music that is iffy at best, but I still think she's better than this.

I guess, to these people, any publicity is good publicity. ((But if that were the case, Lindsay Lohan would be Queen of Earth by now.)) America sees your face week after week and then I suppose buys your terrible album or something. But isn't there a better way to make money? Like, performing music or something?

Even The Voice, which I think has had the least-awful judges out of the talent competitions currently on T.V., ((This therefore excludes The Sing-Off, which includes Ben Folds and Sarah Bareilles, who are both awesome. May it rest in peace.)) decided to play musical chairs this Spring and bring in Usher (in place of CeeLo) and Shakira (in place of Christina Aguilera) temporarily. Am I the only one noticing a very distinct pattern in the producers' choice of replacements? Just sayin'.

SIDEBAR: You will NEVER guess what CeeLo is doing while on hiatus. Never, ever, ever. Are you ready? He is working on a scripted comedy series for NBC based on his life. That is just great information. I hope that becomes a thing.

To summarize: musicians, you don't have to do this. Have some self-respect.

Keith Urban, you don't have to stand next to Nicki Minaj and try to look interested. You have a career. Really, you do. I know the industry is going a different direction, but that doesn't mean you have to listen to pretentious people try to prove their talent to you while Mariah Carey and Randy reminisce about the good ol' days. You're married to Nicole Kidman, for goodness' sake, and you have an Australian accent. You're basically winning at life. Why would you do this to yourself?

Who do you think are the best and worst choices for talent show judges on TV (current or past)?

Snap Judgment: Go On

Photobucket On one hand, I think Matthew Perry should just quit while he's still somewhat-ahead (Friends does catapult you a pretty long way, after all). It's a little bit sad to watch someone who was so successful at this one thing to flounder around aimlessly after they leave it. (I hope this doesn't happen to Emma Watson, because I love her.)

On the other hand, I just really like Chandler and want him to do well.

We gave Mr. Sunshine a chance, but it didn't hold up for me. It was kind of a depressing comedy, if that's even a thing, and I want more of a funny comedy. Decide what you're going to be and be it, y'know? So I gave up on it.

A year or two later we start seeing previews again for a new Matthew Perry show called Go On. Le sigh. Guess we have to give this thing a chance out of respect and love for the genius that was Chandler Bing.

And you know what?

It wasn't terrible. In fact, it was actually quite good. I mean, I laughed out loud several times. Several.

I felt like they did a great job of introducing characters and the premise quickly but completely, threw some emotion in and rounded it out well. I think the characters have a lot of potential.

It's got sort of a Community-type feel (at least I assume that's where it's going)--people from all different walks of life brought together by a commonality. In this case, group therapy, in Community's case, Spanish with Senor Chang.

Even though I feel like Matthew Perry will never be able to fully shake some of his Chandler-isms (perhaps that's because some of his Matthew Perry-isms became Chandler-isms), I was less aware he was Chandler-trying-not-to-be-Chandler than I was with Mr. Sunshine.

My favorite character so far is George, the older black man who has gone blind. During his first group therapy session, Matthew Perry (Ryan, I wanna say?) decides to take over when the teacher is late and have everyone compete in "March Sadness" to decide whose story is the worst. This guy gets to the championship face-off, and his arguments as to why he should advance just get better and better.

The one-liners surprised me with how witty and well-timed they were. I didn't expect to laugh, but I did. Pilots are hard to make, and I feel like Go On succeeded.

I'm excited to get to know all the characters in the therapy group. I think this might turn out to be that thing where you come for Zooey Deschanel but you stay for Max Greenfield. There might be some real gems here.

You can watch the full pilot on Hulu here.

Have you watched the pilot? Will you give it a shot?

Snap Judgment: The Mindy Project

Photobucket I really like Mindy Kaling. I didn't know it until recently, but I do. Sure, she was pretty funny in The Office as Kelly and got major street cred when I found out she was a writer, but other than that I didn't know much about her.

A couple weeks ago I read her book "Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)" (after the library finally relinquished a copy on Kindle) and found her very endearing. She has that self-deprecating witty sense of humor all SNL/NBC comedians have in common, of course, but she's also very relatable for me.

The things she wonders about are the same kinds of things I wonder about. Mainly about how those experiences that are supposed to be all breezy and cool and sexy for beautiful, grown up women would actually play out in real life.

For example, she questions the safety of one-night stands. Not emotional safety-- physical safety. You're seriously going to let a man you've known four hours into your HOUSE? What if he's a serial killer? What if he steals your stuff? What if he doesn't kill you or steal your stuff that night but makes a mental note of your most expensive possessions and comes back later?

It's those kind of buzzkill thoughts that Mindy and I have in common. Actually, that's exactly the word. We are both total buzzkills. Practical to a fault.

Anyway, due to my newfound affinity for Mindy, I decided to give the pilot of her new show, The Mindy Project, a shot and report back to you.

Rating: Good, not amazing. Solid B+

I feel like you have to take all pilots with a grain of salt. It's really hard to introduce a bunch of characters and have a plot and give an overall "this is what this show is going to be like for the next five years" in 21 minutes. I get that.

So, that said, I thought it was good. It had some great moments, and I still found Mindy endearing, so while it didn't suck me in necessarily story-wise, I think it definitely has potential. The appearances from Bill Hader and Ed Helms also didn't hurt.

The premise is Mindy is an OB/GYN: single, 31, on a quest for love and life-improvement. Part Liz Lemon, part Sex and the City (probably…I haven't actually seen that show), part…something with doctors. Other characters include a married best friend, a goofaround hookup buddy British coworker, a jerk coworker she can't stand, and some cute receptionist girls.

Favorite line of the pilot:

Upon getting out of a consultation with a pregnant woman who has no insurance, doesn't speak english and has to use her son to translate, Mindy questions her staff on why they would send her that patient:

Vaguely Foreign Pretty Receptionist: "I thought she might be rich with oil money."

Mindy: "Well, she wasn't. She was poor, with nothing money."

Honorable Mention:

Young Naive Receptionist: "What do you think she should wear, Dr. Costalano? She didn't grow up in this country!"

Mindy: "Actually, I did grow up in this country, Betsy, thank you.."

I really like Mindy's character. Even though she's got her heads in the clouds a bit [a lot] in terms of romance, her genuine moments and sass are charming and really well-placed comedically. Especially when she is annoyed. Which is a lot.

She shares similar qualities with Mindy in real life (at least according to her book), which I also enjoy because I like her sense of humor and the fact that she references her battle with being perpetually chubby and growing up the child of immigrant professionals from India. I also enjoy that she is not Kelly Kapoor in any way except for looking exactly like her.

In summary, I love Mindy Kaling and will definitely be giving this show a chance. It seems enjoyable and possibly great. Not off-the-wall hilarious like 30 Rock or Community (at least not yet), but relatable and still witty.

If you want to check out the pilot, you can view it on Hulu here. Definitely worth watching if you have 21 minutes to kill and you like NBC comedies and New Girl and such.

Are you planning on giving any new shows a shot this fall?

Will The Office Spin-Off Be "Joey" 2.0?

As a community of TV-lovers, I feel we have to talk about this. If we don’t, I’m not sure we can call this site a place for the TV-obsessed anymore. It’s a very important issue in the world of television, and it needs to be discussed, round-table style.

Unfortunately we don’t have a round table, so basically I’m just going to talk at you and you can respond in the comments with your thoughts. Close enough.

Cast members and writers are jumping ship right and left at this point as The Office continues to limp towards the finish line while we anxiously await the moment we can start an inspirational slow-clap from the sidelines.

Part of this last-leg-of-the-journey is the news that there is going to be a spin-off of The Office called The Farm, which will follow Dwight’s family as they run their beet farm.

I think it’s a gutsy move. The Office is one of the most popular shows of our generation. Nearly everyone you know has seen at least a few episodes or knows enough to get the jokes.

How will people react to a spin-off?

Spin-offs by nature are risky. You’re taking a successful element of a very popular show, breaking it off and planting it somewhere else in the hopes that it can grow in a new environment into something uniquely beautiful. I’m not an expert on TV history, but I think this has only worked hardly ever. See: Joey

Can Dwight hold up as a character without his banter with Jim or fight for leadership? Will we have the ability to let new characters (Dwight’s until-now-unmentioned family members) into our hearts?

On one hand I think it has a lot of potential for success, because it’s enough of a departure in environment that it won’t just be The Office: College Years. That episode when Pam and Jim stayed at the beet farm WAS pretty great, after all.

Disappointingly, however, Mose isn’t a main character, and he’s the only Schrute family member we’re familiar with outside of Dwight. Can we relate with just one person we know? Or is that actually an asset because we have no preconceived notions?

Let’s do a comparison to a similarly popular sit-com spin off, Joey.

The thing about Joey was that it it was essentially a continuation of Joey’s life from Friends. He moved, but that was about it. He was still pursuing acting and still doing the same idiot things.

The Farm is a completely different aspect of Dwight’s already-established life. It’s more of a backstory than a new chapter. If the spin-off followed Dwight’s journey as he uprooted and moved to Connecticut and started his own paper company–that would be a flop. But we already know about the beet farm and are intrigued to know more about it, and it’s a total 180 from an office environment.

Also, Friends was very dependent on the ensemble cast. Their characters were developed based off their interactions with one another. One can’t really stand alone, as evidenced by Joey. I never saw Joey, because I wasn’t into Friends yet at the time, but I can’t even imagine him carrying an entire TV show on his own.

With The Office, though it is an ensemble cast of sorts, they have individual personalities and quirks independent of one another. They don’t require one another to be who they are. They aren’t as tight-knit as a group. Which makes sense–they’re coworkers, not necessarily friends (pun very much intended).

I think The Farm has a lot of potential. I think it will be weird at first, as all new relationships are, but I think we might grow to embrace it once we get past the fact that it’s not The Office. It allows a lot of opportunity for different types of story lines, without giving up the same vein of comedy we know and love…quirky characters, off-the-wall situations, but still relatable.

If you’re interested in seeing the breakdown of the characters that will be on The Farm, click here.

What do you think? Is this destined to follow Joey right off a cliff, or do you think it will survive?

Don't Trust the B with Zack Morris and Frankie Muniz?

Photobucket Full disclosure, I haven't seen Don't Trust the B---- in Apt. 23.

The previews alone make me want to curl up into the fetal position and cry little bit. I couldn't handle that girl in Gilmore Girls as one of Rory's new sketchball college friends and I can't handle her in this. And James Van Der Beek--a B list celebrity at best--plays HIMSELF. In a primetime series. And the title not only rhymes, but features a word that has to be censored every time someone says it or types it. Really?


Apparently this season on Don't Trust the B, Mark-Paul Gosselaar ((Did anyone else know Gosselaar was spelled with two A's? Does it make anyone else want to pronounce it like a pirate would? Mark-Paul Gossel- ARGH. Just me?))  and Frankie Muniz are both making appearances...ALSO playing themselves. I don't know if they're just really trying to work the nostalgia angle on our generation to draw us in or what, but it sounds an idea just terrible enough to be hilarious.

Is it even legal to put Zack Morris and Dawson Leery in the same TV show? Can the network even handle that much 90's teenage angst at one time?

Of course, if it was really Zack and Dawson, you know Dawson would be the one over-thinking everything, whining about how hard life is living on a dock and dreaming of being a film director while Zack just leans up against stuff telling him to lighten up and go out with him to the Max to get his mind off things.

Y'know, that's a series I would watch. Who do I have to talk to to make Zack & Dawson a thing?

And then there's Frankie Muniz. When was the last time you heard anything about him? Is he still 12 years old? Survey says yes. But according to Wikipedia he's also been busy making a "R-rated teen sex comedy" that went straight to DVD. So he's got that going for him.

In the episode, James Van Der Beek tries to assemble a Dawson's Creek Reunion and runs into the other two 90's teen stars along the way. Also Busy Phillips shows up. This is SO meta, you guys.

[Real talk: I only learned what that phrase meant because of TV Asylum. I don't feel comfortable using it in real life conversations, but I feel pretty good about my use of it just now. We're all friends here, right?]

This plot line has intrigued me enough that I might just have to give this potential trainwreck a chance.

Have any of you seen Don't Trust the B? Is it worth giving up 30 minutes of time I could be using to watch Season 2 of FNL?

How LOST Is Kind Of Like Jane Eyre


If you've somehow made your way over to TV Asylum just to peer at us from behind the glass like a zoo and observe us TV-obsessed folk in our natural habitat, this post might make you angry. Because I assume if you're the type of person who thinks TV is a waste of time and making us all dumber and whatnot, you're probably also the kind of person that is going to reject the comparison I'm about to make.

TV shows have become functionally similar to books.

There, I said it. Literature majors (if you're out there), take a moment to shake with rage, then come back. Or don't. Y'know, whatever. Go read a book. That's cool too.

Anyway, the way I mean this is not in the fact that they are necessarily as educational or contain the same ability to make one more cultured by indulging in it, but in the way we now treat them in our culture.

I say "now," because it wasn't always this way.

Before DVR, before TV-on-DVD, before we had any way to watch TV shows after they aired besides literally taping them or hoping for syndication re-runs, you watched the shows you watched, and when they were over, they were over. If you missed it, you just never got on board that train and made your peace with it (I assume. I was born in 1988 so I don't have a lot of experience in this era.)

But the dawn of recordable, replay-able TV series has introduced a culture shift.

TV shows can be considered almost works of art, much like books, passed along from one person to another. They can develop a reputation--even become "classics" that everyone should see.

It's no longer "did you watch Friday Night Lights?" it's "have you watched Friday Night Lights?" And if the answer is "no," the response can (and will) be, "you HAVE to watch it." Much in the same way we would recommend a book: "have you read Catcher in the Rye? You have to read it."

We've collected a proverbial library of TV shows via Netflix and DVD's. We have a plethora of TV shows that have already come and gone, yet we still have access to them. We can peruse the shelf and say, "Hm, everyone says Arrested Development was good. I think I'll give that a shot."

TV shows that are currently on the air only make up a portion of what we are viewing as a culture. I just caught up on past seasons of Parks and Rec and am currently traveling through Friday Night Lights, and those shows have been our priorities all summer. Not So You Think You Can Dance? or…what else is on during the summer, again?

It may be somewhat of a detriment to shows currently on the air, in that less shows will get attention simply because they are on TV, but I think this gives great shows much more longevity and challenges TV shows to be greater.

I love this about TV. For one, I feel like it makes us more of a community. We're inviting people to watch shows we thought were amazing so that we can all be a part of the same group and talk about it. Maybe that's just the TVA inside of me talking, but I think it can apply outside of this safe-haven, too.

What TV show do you consider a "classic" (regardless of its age)?

The Voice's New Achilles' Heel

It has come to my attention that The Voice is adding another celebrity judge. Well, not so much a judge as much as Christina Aguilera's little helper. Because I'm pretty sure all four original judges are still there. I know, it doesn't really make any sense, but hey, NBC is known to make some sketch decisions lately. So according to EW, the role of Christina's Little Helper will be played by Billie Joe Armstrong. Yep, that's right, of Green Day fame.


No. Just...no.

I don't even watch The Voice, and I can't stand idly by and let this pass as an acceptable decision. (Though thanks to one of NBC's aforementioned sketch decision of canceling The Sing Off and American Idol's mediocrity I may end up watching it this year.)

Here are three very good reasons why this is a terrible idea:

1) This career move ruins any shred of punk-rock he had left. I'm not going to sit around and say Billie Joe Armstrong is the edgiest rockstar that ever lived, because he's not. There is a Broadway musical based on his songs. But he has been a part of a popular punk rock band since like 1990, and I feel like that gives you some sort of street cred (or whatever the equivalent of street cred is in the punk-rock scene).

But being a part of The Voice? Sure, Adam Levine can pull it off and still be a rock star because a) he is fantastic and b) he never even remotely tried to be the rebellious, political, all-black-wearing frontman. He does ADHD commercials and sings like a dream and hangs out with Wiz Khalafia. Billie Joe I'm not so sure can come out on the other side of this. Even the die-hard Green Day fans (I assume they exist) will probably bail on him at this point. Let's just be honest.

2) His voice is the worst, and this show revolves around one thing and one thing only: voices. Why do we want him teaching others to emulate his? His voice is like...a teenager who got really, really upset about the fact that he has to clean his room and inexplicably decided to throw on a nose plug and drone dejectedly into a microphone about it. "Moy shaaa-doh's only won that woalks besoid me..." No. Put that nonsense away. You are literally 40 years old. Stop whining.

3) He is about as versatile as a whisk. A whisk does one thing and one thing only. You can't pick up pasta with it. You can't use it as a utensil. You can only whisk things because it is a whisk. That is what Billie Joe is like. He can play three power chords and sing songs that are only slight variations on his other songs. Seriously, go listen to any given Green Day song. Same thing over and over again. He can only Billie Joe things because he is Billie Joe. And not everyone wants to be Billie Joe. In fact, I would wager that no one wants to be Billie Joe. Why are we even doing this?

For a person with a name that is so close to mirroring awesomeness (Billy Joel and Lance and/or Stretch and/or Neil Armstrong come to mind...), you would think he'd be better at life.

Who's your favorite judge on The Voice?

The Living Room of Every Sitcom Ever


Some people say variety is the spice of life. They like to change it up, try new things, experiment.

Set designers for family-oriented sitcoms are clearly not those people.

Whether due to pure laziness or merely relentless resourcefulness, I do not know, but the sitcom has one classic living room setup which varies only slightly--if at all-- from show to show.

Family Matters, Growing Pains, Full House, Kenan and Kel, Boy Meets World...even newer Disney shows like Good Luck Charlie are keeping the sitcom layout alive.

To show you what I mean, allow me to take you on a mental tour of the sitcom living room. Visualize it with me.

Our journey begins at the left side of the set.

To your far left, you will first see the front door. Opening to the fake outside world and usually featuring a fancy window, this door has consistently let in unwanted characters, nosy neighbors and police officers returning rebellious children episode after episode. An optional addition to the front door is a platform which lets down into the living room itself (see: Full House). It's not a requirement, but it has been known to make an appearance more than once.

As we turn our gaze slightly to the right, you will soon notice a staircase. Most often the lower steps are set facing the audience, then the upper steps curve to the right as they ascend, sometimes creating a hallway overlooking the living room. The staircase is perhaps the feature which displays the most variation in design, but is always in the same spot relative to the door.

Moving right along, in the center of the room you will see a couch facing you. It may be bright blue, it may be plaid, it may be floral. It is, however, never leather (that is too high-class to be relatable). This couch is often where characters watch TV, have sentimental chats whilst gentle string music plays, sit awkwardly with boyfriends while the father asks questions, you name it. If it happens in the living room, chances are it will take place on or around this couch. (There's also usually a table behind the couch with vases and lamps and books and whatnot.)

Finally as we make our way to the far right of the living room you will notice a door to the kitchen. But not just any door, oh no. A swinging door. Always. Every time. I have yet to see a sitcom in this style with a real door and/or no door at all to the kitchen.

Much like the platform, a pass-through is also optional on the wall separating the kitchen and the living room. This allows characters in the living room to easily interact with characters in the kitchen, for example, when a clumsy character has been sent to prepare food and needs to assure the gathering in the living room that everything is fine, when, in fact, it is not fine. Or when someone needs to spy on a conversation they aren't supposed to hear which is taking place in the living room. I have seen this most often in Disney Channel or Nickelodeon sit-coms.

NOTE: The Cosby Show also follows this formula, except in the mirror image. It's the paradox of the sitcom universe, varying from the formula yet keeping it exactly the same.


This concludes our imaginary tour of 90s sitcom living rooms. I hope you enjoyed your experience. Please be sure to take your belongings with you on the way out.

What's your favorite family sitcom?

The 5 Best Villains on TV

Photobucket DISCLAIMER: This is not an exhaustive list, nor are these in any particular order. (Basically these are just the five that came to my head most prominently among the TV shows I am most familiar with.) Please feel free to add on in the comments!

+ Sue Sylvester [Glee]

By now we all agree that Glee is the worst thing ever and probably had a short life expectancy from the get-go. The only thing holding this string of unrelated high school drama vignettes together was the music and Sue Sylvester. Her "I hate everyone" attitude made Glee relatively bearable, as we, too, hated everyone at Some-Random-President High School. As I grew to hate Mr. Schue even more with each passing episode, Sue's attacks on his abomination of a haircut became more and more satisfying. She said what everyone was thinking, and I appreciated that. (I use the past tense since I stopped watching Glee two seasons ago due to the fact that the music was no longer compensating for its horribleness.)

+ Nanny Carrie [One Tree Hill]

Having maxed out the limits of believable drama in previous seasons, One Tree Hill really had to go big or go home if they wanted to keep the momentum going. So where did they go next? Psychotic nanny. After skipping four years of time so that they didn't have to figure out the whole college thing, One Tree Hill added a new character to the cast: Nathan and Haley's son, Jamie.

And you can't add a new character to OTH without giving them some sort of major life trauma. Being kidnapped twice by a manic, delusional nanny is the perfect solution. The first time, resident bad-guy Dan Scott, Nathan's dad, saved Jamie, so of course Nanny Carrie had to RETURN (bum bum bum) and try to kill him. OTH really outdid themselves here, and to this day it's the most outlandish plot line I can remember from the series. And trust me, they had a lot.

+The Xerox Girl [Friends]

Whether you agree with Ross or Rachel on the whole "we were on a break" thing, let's just all come together on the fact that it's all The Xerox Girl's fault (also Ross's fault, but let's focus on The Xerox Girl for a minute). If it weren't for her, maybe Ross and Rachel would have figured themselves out a lot sooner and not been the trainwreck of a relationship they were.

The Xerox Girl may not have known that Ross had just fought with and/or broken up with Rachel, but she was aware that she (Xerox Girl) and Ross were not married, in love, or even dating for that matter. And Xerox Girls shouldn't just go around sleeping with depressed guys they don't know. She had a say in this, too. So thanks a lot, Xerox Girl, for ruining the most iconic relationship in sitcom history, no matter how nauseating it was.

+ Devon Banks [30 Rock]

Not only is Devon Banks played by Will Arnett, who can do no wrong (as evidenced by the fact that he scored Amy Poehler), but he is the perfect anti-Jack. Both Jack and Devon are strong executive types, but Jack's extreme conservatism is counteracted by Devon's work for the Obama administration and his "gaybies." Their childlike arguing and debate over trivial things makes their pairing endlessly entertaining. A favorite of mine:

Devon: "Revenge is a dish best served cold, like sashimi or pizza." Jack: "You prefer cold pizza?" Devon: "The morning after? It's the best." Jack: "Better than hot pizza? That's insane." Devon: "You don't tell me what kind of pizza to like!"

+ Chang [Community]

Benjamin Chang. What he lacks in skill, he makes up for in pure, unadulterated madness. Like all great villains, his antagonism stems from deep personal trauma and hurt, leaving him thirsty for revenge. [In this case, being jobless, demoted to community college student rather than teacher, and then being denied acceptance into The Study Group no matter how badly he wanted it.] It could be argued he is simply misunderstood and wants to be accepted, but his unstable personality and impulsive actions make him impossible to accept.

He hit rock bottom, living in Greendale's air ducts and janitor's closets with Annie's Boobs (the monkey, guys. It's the monkey's name). Commence plot for revenge. He soon devolves into a string of psychotic rampages that escalate quickly time after time, until he loses all sense of morality, captures and replaces the Dean with a decoy and runs Greendale with an army of militant 12-year-olds. His sheer unpredictability and madness, not unlike Ledger's interpretation of The Joker, make him one of the best TV villains across the networks today.

Who do you think is the best TV villain?

The Demise of Boy Meets World's Jack Hunter

Photobucket Boy Meets World is one of the iconic TV shows of our generation. It's wholesome but still funny, simple yet refined, silly yet heartfelt. A sitcom for teens that didn't involve seeing the future or magic and portrayed parents as actual parents, rather than punchlines.

Despite its admittedly numerous inconsistencies (the whole M.I.A./New Morgan debacle, Topanga's parents 2.0, and didn't Shawn have an alleged sister at some point early on?...), this show remains one of my favorites of all time.

One of the largest splotches on the otherwise beautiful tapestry of Boy Meets World, however, is the character-that-never-was, Jack Hunter.

He started out with potential. Really, he did.

Introducing new central characters is always risky, but Jack was a viable addition in the scheme of the overall story. Shawn's family history was still somewhat of a question mark to us, and his dad's lifestyle made a long-lost-half-brother totally believable. The addition of Jack threw yet another wrench in Shawn's broken conveyor belt of a life and also provided the ever-elusive best friend character for Eric.

PHASE 1 The first season Jack is pretty much just Matthew Lawrence (of Mrs. Doubtfire and Brotherly Love semi-fame). Innocent, just happy to be there. Trying to navigate how to relate to Shawn as the rich boy brother he never had. Not super dynamic, but enjoyable.

PHASE 2 The following year, it is obvious Jack has done a few push-ups over the summer, and we also meet Rachel. Rachel's presence polarizes Eric and Jack even further, pushing the gauge to 100% on Eric's transformation from 10th grade cool kid to complete idiot, and painting Jack as somewhat of a sensitive yet manly alternative by contrast.

Here is where BMW should have quit while they were ahead with Jack. I think this is the season where (spoiler alert) Shawn and Jack's dad dies (who to this day I still refer to as "Chet Hunter" whenever I see him in anything else). He plays that pretty well. He makes us laugh, he makes us cry, he plays the straight man to Eric's nonsense. Overall, it works.

PHASE 3 And then...then he starts going downhill. His biceps get bigger, his Philly accent gets thicker, and his shirts get tighter. He still has some good moments though, like the one where he and Eric decide to dress up as LaLa and Chantel to avoid getting their fingers eaten off by Crazy Luther (not to be confused with the stereo guy with LOW LOW prices).

PHASE MAYDAY-MAYDAY-GOING-DOWN In the final season, Jack hits rock bottom in terms of being an acceptable human being. He has degraded into nothing than a ripped, perfectly-groomed sidekick to Eric who just follows him around in and out of scenes, shaking his head disapprovingly and saying things like "Don't do it man, I'm beggin' ya..." while Eric silences him and does it anyway. Then more head-shaking. Really…go watch any given episode from the last season. It's his only move.

Though the show wants to portray Jack as the sensible one in contrast to Eric's buffoonery, they somehow also transform Jack into a somewhat-dumb, entitled, model-type with a gambling problem, which I suppose they derive from his rich lifestyle (which hadn't seemed to affect him negatively until now). He gets cut off from his stepdad and loses everything and has a poorly acted meltdown in the middle of the student union.

Side note: To this day I don't know if he was saying "um-jack.com" or "i'm-jack.com" when referring to his new business venture in the last season, but it made about zero point zero sense.

I don't know, guys. I just don't know what happened to ol' Jack. Maybe his muscles grew so much they just started engulfing his brain. Maybe it was the fumes from the hair gel. (Remember when hair gel was a thing?) Maybe the producers couldn't afford to pay Matthew Lawrence enough to justify him having to learn more than 2 lines per episode.

I guess we'll never know. But what we do know is that Matthew Lawrence faded into obscurity, yet still more respectable than his older brother Joey who is currently featured on an ABC Family sitcom with Mellissa Joan Hart (worse than obscurity), and not as respectable as the youngest Lawrence brother, Andy, who is doing something normal with his life, probably.

What's your favorite Boy Meets World moment? (You know you have one.)

Why I love Ben Wyatt on Parks and Rec

Photobucket As part of my aforementioned Summer TV Catchup 2k12, I'm going through Parks and Rec for the first time. After the far-too-The-Office-y first season, I gave up on it, but since nearly everyone who has stuck with it says it gets awesome, I have recently hopped on that train. No regrets.

There are so many great characters in Parks and Rec, but one who is quickly becoming a favorite of mine is Ben Wyatt. Not only is he played by the same actor who played Griff in Boy Meets World (automatic express lane to my heart), but I find him charming and entertaining for multiple reasons.

1. He plays the straight man. - Every group needs someone who's a bit of a stick in the mud. Someone who brings it back to reality when no one else is thinking of the practical side. In this group that is especially the case. Leslie is passionate but sometimes gets her head stuck in the clouds. Ron is epically awesome but totally removed from day to day operations (by choice). Tom--I don't even know what his job is, but whatever it is, he doesn't really do it. Enter Ben Wyatt. Number-crunching, skinny-tie wearing, One-F-Jef haircut Ben Wyatt. He comes off pretty solemn at first, but you soon realize he, like all the other characters on Parks and Rec, has a kind heart. And I kind of love him. It might be because I am also a slight stick in the mud. But I digress.

2. He brings an outsider's perspective. - The rest of the cast on Parks and Rec (except Chris of course) have been in Pawnee a long time. They don't really know life outside of it, which makes them hilarious, but oblivious to how ridiculous it is to anyone outside the town. Ben represents our point of view as strangers to Pawnee and can show us what it would be like if we worked in the parks department with these characters. For example, there is truly nothing special about Lil' Sebastian the mini horse, but everyone in the parks department and the entire town acts like Justin Bieber rode him into Pawnee five minutes ago or something. That was a bad example though because at what point would Justin Bieber ever mount any horse? Pretend I said some country star or something. Whoever that guy is who rapped with Ludacris last year. Pretend I said him. Anyway, Ben realizes this is complete nonsense, states so, and everyone else has a total record-scratch moment because Lil Sebastian is the greatest thing to ever happen to them. Can't have those moments without the outsider.

3. His friendship with Tom. - I'm only halfway through season 3, but so far I am ALL about this unlikely (but totally likely) friendship. With everyone else, Tom is the underdog in the relationship, even if he doesn't realize it. He's constantly vying for attention and trying to come off like a hip hop mogul or something. But with Ben he's established the upper hand since day one. If there's any type of person Tom thinks he's better than, it's a nerd. And to Tom, Ben is the ultimate nerd. (I mean nerd in the way that Zooey Dechanel is a "nerd." Not in the way that Napoleon Dynamite is a nerd. Totally different types of nerds here.) Tom acts like he's too cool for Ben, but he totally needs him. I mean, where would he be if Ben wasn't there to comfort him when Tommy Fresh got rejected by Dennis Feinstein? Anyone else might have just laughed in his face, but Ben took one for the team, choked back his vomit and sprayed Tommy Fresh all up in Dennis' car as revenge. Tom needs a rock like Ben to come back to, and Ben needs someone like Tom to get him to loosen up and have fun. Also to provide shelter and TiVo when he only brings a sleeping bag to camp with. It's the perfect symbiotic relationship.

Who's your favorite non-Ron Swanson character on Parks and Rec? (I exclude Ron Swanson because he's an automatic first place for anyone with two ears and a heart.)

Arrested Development Becomes Art


Have you ever wanted to see what a never-nude would look like as a plush doll? Do you wish you could flip through Lucille and Buster's magazine covers?

Well, lucky for you, some talented artists (who apparently also have good taste in TV) taken it upon themselves to turn one of the dozens of never-nudes, Tobias, into a cuddly, yet creepy, plush doll, and create all kinds of Arrested-Development-themed art goodness.

Peruse the article here to behold 9 of the art pieces in Gallery 1988's upcoming "Theres Always Money in the Banana Stand" exhibit. It's totally art, you guys, so it doubles as a cultural experience.

Nickelodeon Revives TMNT and Figure It Out

Photobucket Nickelodeon must have recently hired a whole gaggle of twenty-something jr. executives. You know, the ones who say things like "schedge" and "profesh" but not ironically. The ones who are almost certainly identical to Jon Ralphio on Parks and Rec. But despite the awfulness of their personalities they must also have brought along with them something all true 90's children share: a reverence for 90's television.

What brought me to this conclusion, you ask? I'll tell you. This year, everyone's favorite network whose logo is just an orange splotch is bringing back not one, but TWO shows of our childhood: Figure It Out AND Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

And there was much rejoicing.

Never mind the fact that Nickelodeon is touting Figure It Out as an "all-new show" to an audience who doesn't know the difference, like when Alien Ant Farm redid Smooth Criminal and it was number one on TRL for weeks. Never mind that they have replaced Billy the answer-board-head with plasma screens to appease a generation who never had to tape a show on VHS.

They are making mini celebrities guess what mediocre children do in their spare time and pouring buckets of green goo on them if they slip up, and that's just good television.

No word yet on if Summer Sanders is making an appearance, but I'm thinking she's probably available. With a name like that, your choices of other occupations are pretty much limited to exotic dancer, TV Guide channel host, and professional girl scout.

TMNT looks pretty similar in concept but it's CGI now, so the turtles are significantly cuter than they were before. They look a little more like a muppet-babies version of the old cartoon. Their heads are smaller and rounder, their voices are higher and you kind of would rather hug them than hide behind them. At least I would. How can they eat human-sized pizza when their mouths are so small? How adorable would it be to see them try?

But no matter. The heroes in a half-shell are back, which means you can resume your argument with your younger sibling on whether Michelangelo or Raphael (or Leonardo I guess) is better. (No one likes Donatello. Let's just be honest. He had a stick.) I always chose Raphael, but I also chose the blue power ranger and Eeyore. So underdogs are kind of my thing.

What other 90's shows should Nickelodeon revive?

A Beginner's Take on Friday Night Lights


So, the time has come. Time to begin my journey with the Dillon Panthers and Coach Taylor.

I haven't watched a drama in a long time. Probably not since I quit One Tree Hill after that whole Nanny Carrie debacle.

But after hearing Knox interject analysis and/or praise for Friday Night Lights at any slight opportunity in the TV Asylum podcast, I figured I ought to give this thing a shot. It's summer, y'know? What have I got to lose?

So we've restarted Netflix (after canceling it months ago due to its abysmal movie-streaming selection and the fact that we had DVR) and taken on Parks and Rec (season 2 and forward, more on that later) along with FNL*.

I've watched a total of three episodes so far. And since most people in the TVA community have probably already been through FNL, I thought I'd take some time to remind you what it was like to experience it for the very first time. Y'know, remind you of the good ol' days.

So here are my three initial assessments of Friday Night Lights:

1) The format is completely different from anything I have come to expect. The cinematography (can you call it that if it's TV?), the cutting-back-and-forth between simultaneous scenes, the rawness of the acting...it all comes together to create unique, fast-paced setting. The first episode was one of the most un-piloty pilots I've ever seen. They didn't waste any time. Which brings me to my next point:

2) FNL doesn't ease you in to its story. It doesn't utilize the first few episodes to introduce you to the characters, setting or otherwise. They're not gradually adding layers to characters. The layers are already all present. We're just catching glimpses of the layers, and I'm sure as the series goes on, we'll get longer glimpses to piece together.

It's like FNL simply drops you into a world that has already existed and will continue to exist after you leave it. Your watching it doesn't determine its existence. It's unaware it's just a TV show. Did I just get super deep? I think I just got super deep.

Anyway, to me FNL has been like moving to a foreign country speaking about 6 words of the language and having to pick it up really quickly in order to function. But I hear that's the best and quickest way to learn. Being lowered down into the chaos and trying to make sense of it. In no way am I saying this is a bad thing. I like it, actually. It's challenging. They're not waiting around for me to figure it out. I'm having to figure it out on my own, so I have to pay attention.

3) I'm a huge fan of Mrs. Coach. HUGE. Why? She's surrounded by the stereotypical southern fake-nice-syndrome book clubbers/committee members, yet she maintains her normalcy. She gets it. She's genuine. She knows these people are ridiculous, but she maintains her class. I want to be her friend and I want to punch the other ladies in the face just for existing.

I'm also a huge fan of Riggins already, and I have no idea why. How did they do that? He's this totally lazy drunkard "bad boy" kid. On paper he should repulse me. He probably would in real life. But I still like this guy. I got that he was simply misunderstood and had a hard life right from the get-go. I don't know how they conveyed that, but they did. And I'm a fan.

Who's your favorite FNL Character?

*Side note: I typed "SNL" by accident every single time I tried to type "FNL." This is going to take some getting used to.

The Thing About Tina Fey's Garnier Commercial


By now you may have seen the Garnier hair color commercial featuring Tina Fey. It's perky, it's bouncy, it's shiny, it's everything a good hair commercial should be.

But I feel uncomfortable watching it. Particularly the short version where you don't see her glasses or green converses.

I keep waiting for Tina to make some sarcastic comment or crack a joke with a pop culture reference thrown in for good measure, but she never does.

And then I'm just left sitting there like, oh, maybe she just...likes this hair dye product. That's not nearly as fun. And then I feel let down. And then I feel bad for feeling let down because Tina Fey decided to do a commercial with no jokes. Like I can't just let her be a real person who happens to like nourishing hair dye and doesn't wear her glasses sometimes.

But it's not my fault Tina Fey is hilarious 99.9% of the time. She's created a precedent in my mind. I'm trained to see Tina Fey and think, Oh man. This is going to be good. Just wait. Just wait to see what funny thing she's going to say next. But in this commercial it never happens.

It's like I'm sprinting down one of those unexplained paved roads in the middle of a desert that mysteriously drops of a cliff without warning, and I'm left suspended in mid-air bicycling it like Wile E. Coyote, holding up a sign that reads "Help!" before I plummet to the ground below, landing in a cloud of dust and leaving a coyote-shaped hole in the dirt. That's what it's like to watch this commercial for me. Every time.

I think it's that Tina is hardly ever that enthusiastic about anything, at least when it comes to tone of voice, so when I hear that chipper "this hair color is AWESOME you guys. It makes my hair shiny!" and see her twirling around in a skirt, I shift in my seat and glance to my left and right like, "Am I supposed to laugh? I don't know if I'm supposed to laugh. Is this supposed to be that ironic type of funny? What's that? I think I hear the oven timer going off..."

I need someone who knows Tina well to sit beside me when I watch the commercial so I can lean over and whisper, "is this Tina Fey being serious? I can't tell. Her face is unreadable. I need to know how to react." Or maybe just hold up my Wile E. Coyote sign to her real quick so she can give me the signal and I'll know whether or not to say, "thanks Tina Fey for that informative and convincing sales pitch" or "hahaha, Tina Fey, you slay me." Is that too much to ask?

Am I over-thinking this? Almost certainly. But I've seen this commercial enough to know that this feeling isn't going to go away, and I need to know if you feel the same or if I just have too much social anxiety about people I don't even know.

So, tell me: does this commercial make you want to buy Garnier hair color or take imaginary cookies out of the oven?

Bieber Fever Hits Prime Time


Oh my goodness gracious, you guys. NBC just got bumped up a few spaces on my "like" list after I dropped them in at rock bottom right underneath New Lilly for canceling the Sing-Off and shortening 30 Rock.

Why, you ask? What did this network (which the article I read is quick to remind us is still 4th place) do to regain such favor?

They are airing an hour-long prime time Justin Bieber documentary on Thursday, June 21.

I know. I KNOW. It's too good to be true.

It's important to note at this point in my post that although it may seem like I am being sarcastic, I absolutely am not. If you don't believe me, I will show you a picture of me holding my copy of Never Say Never. Or better yet, you can come over and watch it with me. I dare you to continue to dislike the Biebs after you watch it. Go ahead. Try. You won't succeed. (If you have two ears and a heart, that is.)

Anyway. According to the official press release (via EW), the documentary has “unprecedented access to Justin as our cameras film not only his performances, but his every move on this global tour — giving our viewers an all access pass to his life over a 12-day period, something rarely seen on TV today.”

ALSO, a Justin-cam.

This is going to be good.

Maybe they even captured on film that thing where he ran into a plate glass door or that scuffle with a paparazzi. Okay, so May wasn't his best month. But this will totally make up for it.

Let's cut to the chase, here. I've got 10 reasons why you should watch this Bieberrific event:

+ 30 Rock, Community, Parks and Rec and The Office are not on during the summer. Assuming you too are TV-obsessed and like funny shows, (since you are here at TVA) I can also assume you are no longer tied up on Thursday nights. NO EXCUSE.

+ You can play a drinking game based on how many times Biebs says the word "swag." Extra points if he's dancing or hair-swooshing while he says it. [Alternate drinking game: bets on how many seconds long any given vocal run will be.

+ MAYBE Usher will show up. Maybe.

+ You will have something to talk to your niece about on your upcoming family vacation, which means you can avoid talking about "the face book." SCORE.

+ It's 100 percent free-er than Never Say Never on DVD. (If you don't count your cable bill.

+ You'll be hip to the lingo.

+ You'll probably get to see some pyrotechnics and scaffolding shaped like a heart. Cool, right? [Shh. Just say "right."]

+ He doesn't have that dumb haircut anymore. Well, at least not the original Dumb Haircut, which is about all you can ask.

+ You can use it for research on your grad school thesis about the social repercussions of the reincarnation of "Beatlemania." Assuming that is your thesis, of course. If it's anything else on the planet, this probably won't help you.

+ The joy of listening to the Biebs serenade you with that smooth hip hop sound and secretly wishing you could dance like him. (This one may only apply to me.)

Will you be tuning in? Why or why not? Let's discuss.