Thursday, November 27, 2008

Rosie Live! Review

Rosie O'Donnell premiered the first in a series of live variety shows last night and it was a big fun, embarrasing, entertaining, weird, mess. It was all of those things at once. I do hope that she will still be allowed a Christmas version of her variety show because I think she is onto something, however I think it was majorly flawed. Let's talk about what worked first:

* Opening the show with a song and dance number including the legendary Liza Minnelli is always a treat. Liza is out and about very rarely so I have to give Rosie credit for getting her, and opening her show with her on prime time.
* The performance by Alanis Morissette (of the song "Not as We") was by far the most entertaining and well performed pieces of the night. Alanis was the true talent on this talent show. She looked amazing, sounded amazing, and brought a real sense of class to the evening.
* Kathy Griffin is always hillarious, and Kathy Griffin AS Nancy Grace (my favorite idiotic talking head on television) was brilliant.
* Jane Krakowski, Tony winner and costar of 30 Rock, proved her salt while singing a rather corny give-away song to the tune of "You Gotta Get a Gimmick" from Gyspy. She sang, she danced, she stripped. Very cute.

And now lets talk about what didn't work:

* Random guest slots with nothing to do. We had Alec Baldwin, Clay Aiken, Conan O'Brien, Harry Connick Jr, Rachel Ray, and a couple others showed up to do nothing. It was obviously all rehearsed and all very hokey. They could have cut a number of them and given Alanis another song, or given Liza more to do - anything.
* The random "talent" acts. Sure the 2 brothers could dance well - but we were given a 2 minute snippit of them, whereas the "Spinning" dancers were given about 4 minutes. 4 minutes of spinning, and hula hooping, etc? Could Rosie not have found better talent? Maybe she should have let Conan do some standup, or perhaps allow Harry Connick Jr to sing more than 30 seconds of his Christmas song.
* The ending number with Gloria Estephan was just ridiculous. I hope to post it online later so you can see what I mean. It may be the worst musical number on television ever.
* The comedy segments. Rosie, we get it. Youre overweight, youre gay, and you dont get along with Donald Trump -- its all old news.
* However the worst thing about Rosie Live was indeed Rosie O'Donnell. I think Rosie is a funny woman, and I actually agree with her politics and think she is a fun and charming television personality. Her old daytime talk show was one of my favorites, which I never missed. And she breathed new and exciting life into the View. HOWEVER - Rosie we don't wanna hear you sing, see you dance, or listen to countless unfunny jokes or gags. HONESTLY- couldn't Liza have sung alone? She is the true triple threat - and she's 70-something and still singing, dancing, and acting. She didn't need you throwing her off or dragging her down. Rosie sang too much, danced with too many little kids, tried too hard to be funny, and brought her own show down.

So there you have it. I think the show was onto something, and thanks to Alanis, Liza, and Rosie's brass balls to bring this show to television, I did enjoy it. I just hope Act II is better.

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