Powered by i.TV
October 23, 2014

Tom Papa

Fantasy Role Playing Enthusiast Faces Wrath of Patti LaBelle on 'The Marriage Ref' (VIDEO)

by Nick Zaino, posted Aug 15th 2011 6:40PM
Anton and Bobbi Kukal watch Patti LaBelle and Tom Papa smooch on 'The Marriage Ref'Anton Kukal has faced knights and sword fights in his fantasy role playing business, Mystic Realms. He has faced his wife, Bobbi, over the fact that the business never makes any money. But until they appeared on 'The Marriage Ref' (Sundays, 10PM on NBC), he had never had to face off against an angry Patti LaBelle.

Hobbies/businesses that don't turn a profit are a common cause of dispute on the show, but this one was unusual. When Bobbi met her future husband Anton, he was in law school, and Mystic Realms was a side business. Eventually, it became his main business, which didn't make Bobbi happy. LaBelle wasn't impressed, either. "This man is pitiful," said Labelle. "She needs to kick his ass."

Read More

A Husband's Wine-Drenched Dreams Dashed on 'The Marriage Ref' (VIDEO)

by Nick Zaino, posted Aug 8th 2011 6:15PM
will.i.am on 'The Marriage Ref'Robert and Stephanie Wilson were happily married for 22 years before appearing on 'The Marriage Ref' (Sundays, 9PM on NBC). They seemed to be deeply in love, with just one problem. Robert, a doctor, had a dream of becoming a vintner, and he happened to find a vineyard for sale ... in North Carolina. They were at an impasse, and clearly only will.i.am, Ali Wentworth, and Judah Friedlander were qualified to handle it.

Robert didn't have the qualifications to run a vineyard, but he did have two other guys who also knew nothing about vineyards who he could hire to work the place. Robert figured he was fine, and Stephanie obviously disagreed. "He started a garden this year in our backyard and we wound up reaping six jalapeno peppers and a three hundred dollar water bill because he kept on forgetting to turn off the sprinkler," she lamented.

Read More

Mary J. Blige Casts Deciding Vote in a Shopping Argument on 'The Marriage Ref' (VIDEO)

by Jason Hughes, posted Jul 25th 2011 3:21AM
Mary J. Blige, 'The Marriage Ref'It was a little unfair for Michael when he and his wife, Dora, were participants on 'The Marriage Ref' (Sun., 10PM ET on NBC). Their problem boiled down to a classic difference between the sexes, which mean the panel was more than likely going to vote down gender lines.

With Lauren Graham, Colin Quinn and Mary J. Blige sitting on the stage, Michael was outnumbered, and he knew it.

The issue was one of shopping. Michael hated it and didn't want to do it, but Dora wanted him to come with her and be supportive of how she liked to shop. Quinn backed Michael, though he took it further than even Michael probably was intending.

Read More

Tom Papa Previews 'Marriage Ref' Changes: 'Rightest' Win $25K, Billboard (VIDEO)

by Nick Zaino, posted Jun 23rd 2011 1:10PM
Tom Papa on 'Today'As host of 'The Marriage Ref,' Tom Papa gets to help settle a lot of silly arguments between spouses, along with a panel of comedians and celebrities. Thursday on 'Today' (weekdays, 7AM on NBC), Papa discussed his philosophy about marriage and what it takes to keep two people together.

"I think you have to realize that every marriage is ridiculous," he said. "We're all a mess and there's always problems and it's better if you just laugh at it and don't take it too seriously." Once more, he said his wife agrees with him, which is a good sign.

Papa revealed that the stakes are a little higher for the new season of 'Marriage Ref.' Whoever wins the argument is declared "The Rightest of the Right," and they win $25,000 and a billboard in their hometown declaring their, well, rightness. That's a lot of cash, but, as Papa said, "Every married couple is like, 'I want the billboard.' No one cares about the money."

Read More

'Marriage Ref' Host Tom Papa Previews Big Changes, Celebrity Guests for Season 2

by Maggie Furlong, posted Jan 14th 2011 12:15PM
Comedian Tom Papa'The Marriage Ref' wasn't exactly a ratings hit in its first season, but NBC is giving the reality show -- which revolves around celebrity panelists taking sides in the marital fights of real couples -- another shot.

Host Tom Papa reveals that season 2 (premieres Sun., March 6, 8PM ET on NBC) has some major changes though.

Instead of the celebrity panelists judging the fights based on their video submissions, the couples will actually be live in studio. It's certainly a lot harder to be snarky and mean to someone's face, which comedian Papa admitted is the reason for the update.

Read More

Demi Moore, Kelly Ripa and Jim Breuer on 'The Marriage Ref' (VIDEO)

by Oliver Miller, posted May 21st 2010 4:00AM
Demi Moore, Kelly Ripa and Jim Breuer on 'The Marriage Ref'On the season finale of 'The Marriage Ref' (Thu., 10PM ET on NBC), we have a fairly random collection of celebrities, gathered together to give advice about guy-girl relationships. So there's actress Demi Moore, TV personality Kelly Ripa, and ... the comedian formerly known as "Goat Boy"? Yep, it's Jim Breuer. Remember him?

One of the problems that the celebs have to solve -- a husband and a wife quarreling over whether she should get a new, fancier wedding ring. Well, we've got two girls and one guy on the celebrity panel. Will this tip the decision in the wife's favor?

Read More

Howie Mandel's Weird Anti-Germ Habits on 'Marriage Ref' (VIDEO)

by Aimee Deeken, posted May 14th 2010 6:32AM
Howie Mandel's Anti-Germ Habits on 'Marriage Ref'Being the germaphobe that he is, Howie Mandel got unnerved when Bette Midler touched him during their appearance on 'The Marriage Ref' (Thu., 10PM ET on NBC). But that was only the beginning of myriad disturbing insights into the lifestyle he and his wife maintain under his anti-germ regime.

"When do you throw out your socks?" asked host Tom Papa. Mandel replied, "I'll be honest with you, I'll wear them [only] once or twice."

He continued, "I wash my money ... I put all the money in the pockets, and then [my wife] puts the pants into the laundry, and then she gives me the money that's been laundered."

Who knew the term "money laundering" could actually be taken literally?

Read More

Jay Leno's Stripper Friend on 'Marriage Ref' (VIDEO)

by Aimee Deeken, posted Apr 30th 2010 4:13AM
Jay Leno on 'The Marriage Ref'It's a common problem for couples: one person has a really good friend of the opposite sex, and the partner is skeptical and jealous of him/her. On 'The Marriage Ref' (Thu., 10PM ET on NBC), guest judge Jay Leno shared that he and his wife of 30 years had this issue as well -- though with a twist.

Watch the video after the jump.

Read More

NBC Renews 'Marriage Ref' and Two Other Shows You Don't Care About

by Bob Sassone, posted Apr 5th 2010 5:31PM
Marriage Ref
To paraphrase a Jerry Seinfeld routine, what's the deal with NBC? Here's the latest: they have given the green light to another season of three new shows: the celeb-filled 'Marriage Ref,' the Guy Fieri game show 'Minute To Win It,' and Lisa Kudrow's genealogy reality show 'Who Do You Think You Are?' Yup, all three shows will be back on your TV come this fall.

Is it too late to ask Jay Leno to come back to the 10PM slot?

Read More

Lunatics Running The Asylum: 'The Marriage Ref' Could Use a Real Coach

by Mark Wigmore, posted Mar 26th 2010 8:41PM


For nine seasons, NBC and Jerry Seinfeld successfully dominated the ratings with the self-proclaimed show about nothing. According to producers, the rules of the ever-popular and manically-rerun 'Seinfeld' series were simple – no hugging, no learning. Who knew that Seinfeld could accomplish all of these goals all over again with his new series, 'The Marriage Ref'?

Now nearing half a dozen episodes, 'Ref' attempts to solve the little squabbles plaguing married couples, pegging one against the other in a win or lose contest. The show found a home on NBC thanks to the tragedy that was 'The Jay Leno Show,' the 10 pm-slotted experiment that went horribly wrong.

The Seinfeld-produced reality/game show was fast-tracked into the open Thursday position. 'Ref' features stand-up comedian and long-time pal to Jerry, Tom Papa, as the so-called Ref. According to his website bio, he has no experience in the field of couples therapy or any other professional credit in the field. That's why we decided to talk to a real psychotherapist, someone who actually dispenses advice to warring couples.

Read More

Miley Cyrus Gets Love Advice From 'Marriage Ref's' Tom Papa (VIDEO)

by Aimee Deeken, posted Mar 26th 2010 10:30AM
Miley Cyrus, Tom Papa on 'Tonight Show'Last night on the 'Tonight Show' (weeknights, 11:35PM ET on NBC), 'Marriage Ref' host Tom Papa shared what he considered the best relationship advice ever given to him: to lie.

His sage words distressed the evening's other guest Miley Cyrus, who's been dating Aussie Liam Hemsworth for 10 months.

"Is he going to lie the whole time?!" asked Miley.
"Yes he is. You're going to lie to him -- and you're going to be happy."

Papa further explained his theory with a story of candle-shopping.


Watch the video after the jump.

Read More

The TV Squad Podcast: Tom Papa of 'The Marriage Ref,' 'DWTS,' March Madness, and More!

by Joel Keller, posted Mar 25th 2010 5:11PM
Tom Papa of 'The Marriage Ref'After a few stops and starts, we finally managed to get Tom Papa, host of NBC's 'The Marriage Ref,' to join us on the podcast. He talks with Jason Hughes, Danny Gallagher and me about the new show, who his favorite couple has been so far, managing a panel with Larry David, Ricky Gervais and Madonna, and exactly what he thought of the Leno-Conan debacle that gave his show that Thursday at 10PM ET opening.

Tom joins us about 18 minutes into the podcast and stays with us for about 25 minutes. Before and after, Jason, Danny and I talk about:
  • How March Madness messes with our DVRs and why networks can't send out live DVR updates,
  • The new cast of 'Dancing with the Stars' and the importance of Pam Anderson's breasts this season,
  • Two shows that are finally getting killed off: one good ('Scrubs') one not so good (''Til Death'). We also talk about what shows have been on the "Can't Kill 'Em" list in recent years.
  • Picks of the week, and more.

Run time is 1:13:08.

You can listen to the podcast below, or download from here or by subscribing to our RSS podcast feed. It is also available via iTunes. Feel free to leave us feedback in the comments or drop us a line at tvsquadpodcast [at] gmail [dot] com.

As always, the music at the beginning and end of the podcast is "Life" by Justin Trawick.

Read More

Thanks to Larry David, Last Night's 'Marriage Ref' Was (Almost) Good

by Joel Keller, posted Mar 12th 2010 2:02PM
Larry David, Madonna, and Ricky Gervais on 'The Marriage Ref'
I don't know why I keep watching 'The Marriage Ref.' I hated the smugness and the idiocy of the premiere, and the second episode, with Tina Fey, Eva Longoria and Jerry Seinfeld passing judgment on couples' arguments, was even more painful to watch. But I wanted to watch last night's episode before I dismissed the show completely.

Why? Maybe I like rubbernecking when I see smoking wrecks like this, whether they're on the highway or on my TV. Maybe I'm a masochist. But I'd like to think that my patience with this show was due to the high-powered panel that Seinfeld had coming up for the show's third episode: none other than Ricky Gervais, Larry David and Madonna.

My patience was rewarded... somewhat. What this episode showed me was that, with the right panel, the show can be entertaining and the smugness level can be tolerable, especially if the celebrities spend as much time ripping on each other as they do the hapless couples on the show. And with the self-loathing David around, you knew that there was a pretty good shot of that happening.

Read More

'The Marriage Ref' Would Be Funnier Without the Celebrities

by Joel Keller, posted Mar 1st 2010 11:29AM
The Marriage Ref
'The Marriage Ref' is a strange beast. After watching last night's post-Olympic sneak preview of the show, which moves to its Thursday at 10PM ET slot on March 4, it feels like a '60s-style celebrity panel game show joined to a TLC marriage show.

It's a pretty straightforward idea: a married couple is depicted having an argument over a specific issue. In the pilot, for instance, one husband wanted to get his recently-deceased dog stuffed and display the mutt in the living room, over his wife's vehement objections.

The celebrity panel, who in the premiere consisted of Kelly Ripa, Alec Baldwin and executive producer Jerry Seinfeld, talk and joke about the situation, coming down one one side or the other. The final decision is rendered by the ref, host Tom Papa, who tells the couple via satellite feed.

But the pilot made me want to see much more of the couples having their funny conflicts than the celebrities yukking it up over those conflicts. And that's a problem.

Read More

Have a Question for Tom Papa of 'The Marriage Ref?' Ask It Here!

by Joel Keller, posted Feb 26th 2010 6:02PM
Tom Papa of 'The Marriage Ref'We have a fun treat coming up for our next episode of The TV Squad Podcast: Tom Papa, host of NBC's new series 'The Marriage Ref,' will be joining us for some talk about his show and some of the interesting arguments he's had to mediate.

But Papa's an interesting guy: He's been on the stand-up circuit forever, and has friends in high places, including 'Marriage Ref' executive producer Jerry Seinfeld. So if you want to ask him questions about being buds with Jerry, some of the people who have gone on 'Ref' (including Alec Baldwin), or why he's credited as a "writer" on an episode of 'Jon & Kate Plus 8,' ask them here.

Leave your questions in the comments and we'll relay them to Papa during the podcast. We'll even give you credit for any question we use. So, ask away below. Any question we get in before we record the podcast on Tuesday at around 5 PM ET will be eligible.

(UPDATE 3/2/10: We decided to postpone this podcast due to Tom's tough schedule and some other fun stuff going on on my end. He'll join us soon.)

Read More

Follow Us

From Our Partners