I'll be the first to agree that at some point after Chris Moneymaker's World Series win, poker on TV got a little bit out of hand. For a while it seemed that you couldn't turn on the TV without stumbling over some new poker-based show. Things have settled down somewhat lately, with a few survivors remaining. For my poker watching vote, there remains a big three. The World Series, despite ESPN's screwed up scheduling, World Poker Tour, and the newcomer, High Stakes Poker.
Now it looks like two of the three could be in trouble. It seems that the expected dates for the renewals of WPT and High Stakes over at GSN have come and gone. The speculation is that the new CEO at GSN, David Goldhill, wants to move away from the interest in poker that the former CEO, Rich Cronin, brought to the network. Goldhill would instead like to get back to more traditional game shows.
If Jim McKay had just done that, he'd have a great legacy. However, when he was confronted with the task of anchoring the events that unfolded at the 1972 Munich Olympics, when the Israeli athletes were taken hostage by terrorist and killed in a commando raid, Jim McKay rose to the occasion.
Well, did you watch it? Last night CBS boldly went where no network has gone before... and it kind of sucked. That's too bad. As someone who counts himself as a fan of MMA, I had high hopes for the big debut. But then, I knew going in that it was an iffy proposition. They try hard, but the Elite XC is still far from the cream of the MMA crop. For the prime time debut, it really would have been nice if this could have been a big UFC event. Heck, even the WEC with that Uriah Faber vs Jens Pulver (VS tonight at 6PM PST) match would have been preferable.
Despite the lack of big name talent, the show still had a shot. Great fights can make up for a lot of shortcomings, and this one had a lot of them to be made up for. To start, the production left a lot to be desired. For example, if you are promising the fans big time fighting, get to it already. It took a full 25 minutes before the first match started. Worse than that, given the way the first two matches played out, fans were left with just over two minutes of actual fighting in the first hour of the show. I was left thinking that the most exciting thing about the first hour was the commercial for Street Fighter IV. Not a good sign.
CBS Executive Chairman, Sumner Redstone, was asked on Wednesday for his thoughts on the four MMA events scheduled to air on the network as a result of their partnership with Elite Xtreme Combat. Now, if Sumner just said he's not a fan, or he didn't think it was right for the network, I could probably just agree to disagree with him. My issue with his comments, as reported by Reuters, come from the reference that airing the sport on free, broadcast TV, is not socially responsible.
Seriously? Does he watch the network? We all know what would be plugging those open holes in the lineup if it wasn't for the appearance of Kimbo Slice and Gina Carano (American Gladiators, pictured). Yes, another heaping helping of CSI:X reruns, possibly featuring psychopaths that poison/stab/shoot/strangle/etc their victims. If your argument is that airing fictional murderers committing heinous, bloody, crimes is somehow taking the moral high ground when compared to MMA, I'm really not buying it. For those of you interested in some Saturday night MMA, I've attached the press release, with the fight card, after the jump.
That said, I don't know what I think about it. The song is nice enough, and it was fun seeing good old Randy Jackson jamming out behind her on bass guitar, but it sure seemed like she was lip-synching. I even feel pretty damned confident I saw her out of synch with the track at a few points. That said, my girl can still dance and proves that over forty can still be hot.
Super Bowl XLII is all done except for the cleanup and the hangovers. And, you are probably doing one of two things right now. Either you are joyously celebrating the win of the Wild Card New York Giants over the undefeated (until Sunday) New England Patriots, or your are cursing out that f@#&ing Tom Brady and coach Bill Belichick for screwing up a perfect season and, most likely, starting a new sports curse in New England.
Oh well, at least you have the commercials to take your mind off of it all if you were a Patriots fan. This year's crop was pretty diverse with a mix of serious and humorous ads. Plus, a little star power thrown in just for taste. Thanks to Jason Hughes, Jen Creer, JJ Hawkins, and yours truly, TV Squad has postings about every new commercial that aired, from the E-Trade baby to the guy who attached jumper cables to his nipples.
If you're scratching your head on what the hell I mean then jump over to the next page, where you'll see a list of links to all of our commercial reviews.
Gallery: Super Bowl XLII Commercials
Oh, and of course Hank makes the hitch team the following year. The high five at the end between the dog and the horse was just perfect. I don't know what it is, but Anheuser-Busch simply has one of the best advertising and marketing teams as they virtually never miss when it comes to their Super Bowl ads. Another banner year for them it looks like.
It's not baby-talking Adam Sandler, it's not sensitive yet funny Adam Sandler, it isn't even serious and angry Adam Sandler. It's Adam Sandler as Borat. Well, from the preview that was shown it seems like he's channeling Borat.
I guess Adam is taking a break from some of his more serious roles to go back to his wacky comedy roots. However, since this isn't Cinematical I'm not going to debate whether or not this is a good idea for Sandler. All I'm going to do is rate the preview. Eh, not that funny. Seen it all in plenty of other previews before. Maybe the movie will be better.
All kidding aside, I like how this commercial appeals to the immature masochistic side of me. I'm talking about the side that would like to get on a big wheel on a steep hill with little to no padding and roll with only a few bails of hay resting between me and imminent death.
That's seems to be the demographic Toyota is shooting for here, and I'll be damned if they didn't nail it.
The best line out of this entire Wil Farrell commercial for Bud Light: "Bud Light. Suck one"
Wil Ferrell loves the 70's, as can be seen from some of his recent movies. And, when he plays characters like Jackie Moon he really goes all out for the stereotypical characteristics that we think all big stars of the 1970's had. He also fits perfectly into the types of ads Bud Light pushes out each Super Bowl. By the way, if you enjoyed this little 30-seconds worth of Wil there is a 60-second version of this ad floating around the Internet that features a whole other bunch of "outtakes".
That said, I think I could have picked some opponents that would have made for a much better commercial. Don't get me wrong, I know politics is in the air and it was very timely to have Carville & Frist together in a commercial, I have two quick ideas that could have worked just as well.
Remember that E-trade baby ad you saw in the third quarter? Well, the fourth quarter version of the commercial was about the same, except there was someone making balloon animals in the background.
I'm not a big fan of the talking baby commercial, even if it is popular. As many parents will agree, we aren't in any hurry for our children to talk Because, once they do start speaking they don't stop. Then, they start talking back to us telling us that we need to get them this toy, or need to get them that item of clothing. Before you know it they're screaming at you because you won't spend one thousand freakin dollars for a Hannah Montana ticket because, you know, you like to pay the mortgage, and ...
Um, was that out loud? Anyway, cute baby and okay commercial.
Personally, I thought Matt Hasselbeck's commercial was a little bit more entertaining, but Chester Pitts commercial wins in the inspiration department hands down.
How often do you hear a tale of a normal person getting plucked from a dead-end, everyday type of occupation and becoming an elite athlete in what is arguably the most prestigious professional sports association in this hemisphere?
Here's what I didn't notice about this commercial until I saw it again on my DVR -- there's a little notice at the bottom of the screen that says 'Warning: Do Not Attempt". What are we talking about here? Are they telling us not to place jumper cables on our nipples (because, if that's the case, then they're too late) or are they telling us not to dance to Salt n' Pepa's Push It? I think we need some confirmation here.
Either way, this was one of the funnier commercials during this year's Super Bowl. I mean, how can you go wrong with a overweight guy who gets down to a popular 80's dance tune. It just proves that sometimes you need to go for the crass rather than for the smart to get your message across.
While this commercial was funny, I don't think it's up to par with the typical commercials they put out there. There was just something off about the pacing and really just the overall concept that left me wanting a little more.
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