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October 10, 2015

Love Monkey: Confidence

by Bob Sassone, posted Feb 8th 2006 7:41AM

Love Monkey"There's a thin line between confidence and arrogance."

That's the quote from Tom Farrell that summarizes this episode, as Tom and True Vinyl hire a critically-acclaimied indie director to direct Wayne's first music video. Are they doing the right thing? Do they have the money for all the effects/equipment/extras he needs to film the video? Will he do something to eventually tick everyone off?

Personally, after viewing just 12 seconds of this guy's suppsed "masterpiece" The Cellist, I wouldn't have hired this guy at all. But Tom hires him, which would have been fine, since he could have added someting different to the video. But my God, you could tell this guy is a pretentious jerk from the very first meeting, and you know that he's going to do or say something that's going to be terrible and over the line, and you know that Tom will eventually come to his senses and fire the guy. That's one of the problems I have with this show, that ever ep seems to have some deep moment where Tom stands his ground and gets to the "truth" and what's "real" and "honest," and gives a little speech about honesty. It comes across a little heavy-handed, to the point of almost being satirical or ironic (like his big speech about integrity to his boss in the first ep, the one that got him fired...I sided with the boss who fired him,heh). 

But this is a solid little show, and this was a good episode. It had a good balance of the wacky and the real, and even introduced a new character (Bran's boss, who Tom asks to play basketball with the gang), and I like how it was pretty focused on the one plot. It did have a couple subplots, of course, but they didn't get in the way.  And this Teddy Geiger, he's a real find. He's only a teenager, but he's a really good singer and songwriter, and not a bad actor to boot (the way he delivers his lines are low-key and realistic).  You can listen to Geiger's music from the show here.

By the way, I'm curious, fans: who do you think Tom should end up, Bran or Julia?

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Anthony Timberlake

Teddy, the kid that sings, is from a town about 20 minutes away from where I live, near Rochester, NY. It's amazing to watch this kids life go from nothing to him being on national television. I guess you told me...

February 08 2006 at 6:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

There's something about this show that I like although I think it isn't as solid as it could be. The group of friends don't seem real. Their interactions seem forced, scripted, and false. I think that really good ensemble shows just click from the get-go. The chemistry is either there or it isn't.

It may be that there's just too many characters to focus on. There's Tom's friends at work and his friends outside of work. We're constantly jumping back and forth between the two. It's a little bit of a mess. Seems like they are trying to squeeze in too much subplots, that don't really pay off. I would say that if they scrapped the group of friends and focused on Tom at work, and Tom trying to have a love life, that would be enough. I'd give Tom one bestfriend -- the fabulous Judy Greer of course, and lose the rest.

February 08 2006 at 5:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm sick, sick, sick of Wayne. They're obviously grooming this kid for big things; it's equally obvious that he doesn't deserve them.

I also agree with Joel. If the central character is the continuing focus of the show, it would do no harm (and be more realistic) if some of Tom's problems continued episodically, rather than the neat, cloying summing-up at the end of each. Finally, just how rich IS Tom? He plays it down but isn't hurting, I'd just like to have it stated somewhere in the show just how elitist all these characters are.

Here in Raleigh, the show was cancelled for the Duke/NC game. The station, in its infinite wisdom, advised us to tune in between 2 and 3 am to catch it.

In MY infinite wisdom, I did not do so. I still like the show, but that's a bit much.

February 08 2006 at 12:35 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

"who do you think Tom should end up, Bran or Julia?"

objoke: Well, I think Bran, because, it'd keep him a normal guy.. just.. y'know... .... regular.

Thank you, I'll be here all week, don't forget to tip your waitresses.

February 08 2006 at 10:43 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This show cracks me up, but I agree with the previous comments, re: diverse characters, "Scrubs"-like realizations at the end.

As for the teen singer, I like his sound, but the way he actually sings looks painful. You can see his throat constricting and everything. Ow.

That Ben Shenkman is in everything! I like his chemistry with Judy Greer.

February 08 2006 at 10:18 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The show is pandering pretty shamelessly to the young "hip" market (though the acutal music is more along the lines of John Mayer/"Tracks" magazine). I like the show, however... I mean, it's pulled me away from "SVU" -- and I don't even have a Tivo!

As for the "big lesson" ending, I think that this is the inevitable result of a drama that has a central character. If you've got a true ensemble, you can get away with smaller lessons (or, depending on the subplot, no lessons). When one guy is THE central character, everything that happens to him has to be big and DRAMATIC!! I can tolerate it, cause the rest of the hour is good fun.

As for the "far-fetched" nature of his friends: I didn't see the first episodes, but I had assumed that these guys had grown up together. It's not unreasonable that a group of upper middle class kids would grow up to be upper middle class adults -- even if one of them is black. As for the gay sportscaster... that's only far fetched if you refuse to believe that ANYONE involved in sports is gay.

February 08 2006 at 9:43 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I agree with the previous comments. I mean, I like the show but sometimes it's a bit too much like Scrubs (with the main character having a big 'ilumination' at the end), but without the laughs.

This episode had a little mistake. Shooter let Tom use an 'empty industrial building' to shoot (npi) the video. If that was the case, why would the building door say "Stage 4"? Why, why, why????

Also, at the very end, and this just a general comment about the ep, why would Tom not take full credit for shooting the video? Instead he chooses to shut up and let everyone think that the jerk director 'delivered'. Why, why, why????

Lastly, I think the writers tried way too hard to make Tom's group of friend's seem diverse. I mean, a rich black guy and a gay sportscaster. It just seems far fetched.

February 08 2006 at 9:10 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Not the best episode, but a keeper of a quoted line!

""...the guy's a conversational cul de sac..."

hehe! (there were others, but this one stuck with me for the whole night)

February 08 2006 at 9:07 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Joel Keller

I'm getting a little tired of how Tom magically solves everything by the end of the episode. In the last episode, he pairs Wayne with the Spears-alike who wrote that bad song and, bam, the song is a hit. *Now* he fires the pretentious director *way* too late in the game and just shoots and edits a great video himself. So not only is he a great A&R guy, but he's a top notch record producer and music video director, too. Jeez. I saw less leaps of faith in The DaVinci Code...

February 08 2006 at 8:02 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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