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TV Episode Review – Work of Art: The Next Great Artist “Judging a Book by Its Cover”

by on Jun.24, 2010, under Reality, Television

Bravo's Work Of Art - The Next Great Artist

I have always liked Bravo’s other creative reality show, ‘Project Runway’, even though I have no clue about anything to do with fashion. I’ve never studied it and usually just turn to my trusty Glamour magazine (yes, I subscribe to Glamour, what of it?) when I want to get a clue as to what I should buy when I go shopping for a big event. Still, even without any knowledge of fashion, I enjoyed that show because I could appreciate the creativity that goes into it.

‘Work of Art: The Next Great Artist’ is different, I knew it from the moment I first started watching. Because art is something I do know a little about. Yes, I pretty much exclusively write these days but that wasn’t always the case. I’m packing to move to a new place soon and recently came across my old sketch books and paintings, etc. Now I’m not gonna claim that I was any good, but at the very least I’ve tried my hand at a few of the mediums the people use on the show – everything from photography to sculpture, watercolors, and even graphic arts.

Having first-hand knowledge makes this show ever so much enjoyable for me. Unlike ‘Project Runway’, where I struggled to understand the difference between fabrics and styles, I know how these artists feel and what it’s like to try and figure out how to get your creation to come to life. Maybe that’s why I write now. Writing seems so easy, when I think of what I want to say, I go ahead and say it. When I was sketching it wasn’t always like that. I’d think of an idea, an image I wanted to convey, and then bang my head against the wall trying to make it come out the way it was in my head.

In this week’s episode, we see the artists dealing with that problem. Tasked with the job of creating a new cover for a classic novel, each goes about it in their own way. Personally I loved what the winner did, a conceptual picture of a time machine for ‘The Time Machine’. Also I was really happy the crazy lady who wrote her title backwards got kicked off. Her attitude of being above the idea of selling her work got on my nerves. Um, if you’re not interested in commercializing your art then why be on a show where you’re out to win $100,000 for the best artist?

Overall I really enjoyed this episode and I can’t wait until they repeat the first two so that I can catch up and commence with becoming as addicted to this show as I was to ‘Project Runway’.

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Positively Positive Review – Kirstie Alley’s Big Life: Cou-Ga-Roo

by on May.11, 2010, under Comedy, Reality, Television

Kirstie Alley Big Life

As I watched the last two episodes of this season’s Kirstie Alley’s Big Life, I found myself laughing and laughing and……you guessed it, laughing some more. Every episode has had this rather odd effect on me and I decided to try and figure out why.

So I examined the episodes from beginning to end, studying them with my glasses (which I wear when I don’t feel like putting my contacts in) perched on the end of my nose, notebook in hand and taking studious notes.

Um yeah….so maybe not.

What I did do was think about it, and I decided that the reason is quite simple. The people in Kirstie’s (big) life are freaking hilarious. If I were standing in a room with them and had to watch all the shenanigans I’ve watched this season, I’d laugh. Cameras or no cameras.

In the first episode, titled “Fat Like Me”, Kirstie decides to try and show all her skinny peeps what it’s like to be fat like her and Jim. She not only makes them wear weighted vests, she even goes so far as to put them in huge fat suits. The results are not only hilarious, but also pretty insightful as each one of them actually does begin to understand what it’s like. As a woman who has struggled with my own weight issues, there have been a lot of times where I wish I could have done that with people, just so they’d get it.

In the final episode, the big joke is that everyone thinks that Kirstie and her extremely hawt Australian manservant…..erm I mean creative assistant… are having a torrid affair. The two are actually working on a surprise project for Jim before he goes back home to Florida.

Do I think that none of this stuff is set up? Heck no, of course it’s gotta be set up. How else do you explain the fact that Kirstie and Nick just so happen to be having a conversation (full of double entendres) in front of her children? Or the fact that Kelly just so happens to be outside Kirstie’s bedroom door to hear them “going at it” and that Tracy just so happens to run upstairs just in time to see Nick run out of the room wearin nothing but a towel.

The fact that some of the jokes are set up doesn’t take away from how funny the results are. These are real people, not actors, and you can’t fake how real people react to the often ridiculous situations they get put into on the show.

Overall the last two episodes of this series were just as hilarious as the rest and I already can’t wait for next season.

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More Kirstie Alley’s Big Life on The Positively Positive….

Kirstie Alley’s Big Life – The Way We Weren’t

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Positively Positive Review – Kirstie Alley’s Big Life: The Way We Weren’t

by on Apr.19, 2010, under Reality, Television

Kirstie Alley Big Life

I was a little late to this show since I was out of town when it premiered. When I got back I heard about it and immediately set my DVR to record.

Boy am I glad I did. I can honestly say this show has me laughing harder than almost anything else I watch all week. Yet it also has some moments too, being about a woman who faces her share of challenges (paparazzi invading her privacy, tabloids publishing vicious articles and pictures, struggling with her weight).

This week the hilarity came when one of Kirstie’s employees, Jim (handyman and also her “chubby buddy”) got a little under the weather. Knowing that his wife was out of town, Kirstie offers up her bed to Jim, offering to take care of him for 48 hours. Jim then basically takes over, using the intercom to demand everything from magazines to scented candles.

This week the slightly more serious moments came from Kirstie giving a real-life challenge to her son True. The 17 year old is engaged (planning to marry when he’s 18) and his mom decided that he needed to know what it was like to be a man and feel the pressure of having to provide for a family. So she challenged him to get a paying gig (he’s a musician in a band) in five days. It was fun watching him man-up to the task as at first he felt it couldn’t be done, but later felt the flush of success when he pulled it off.

The best part of the show for me is always Kirstie’s voiceovers. As the camera zooms in on her often wacky facial expressions, we get to hear what’s going on in that mind of hers. Without those, I don’t think the show would be half as funny as it is.

Overall a great show that manages to make me laugh (hard) every week and also shows me a woman who is a lot like many of us out there, struggling with her own issues just as the rest of us struggle with ours. The difference is that her life is much funnier than mine so I’m glad she’s the one with the show. I don’t have lemurs. I really need to get some lemurs.

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Positively Positive Review – Project Runway: Back To New York

by on Jan.15, 2010, under Reality, Television

Project Runway Season 7

This blog is about positive reviews, so in the interest of not making a liar out of myself I’m going to refrain from saying anything about the previous season of Project Runway. Instead I’ll focus on the current one and talk only about last night’s episode.

When I heard that Project Runway was moving to Los Angeles last year, I was pretty excited. I didn’t think that a change in cities would make that big of a difference to the show and hey, wouldn’t it be fun to have it filmed here in my home town?

But since I’m not talking about last season, I won’t say anything about how it turned out. Now whether or not last season had anything to do with a change in cities, I really don’t know. What I do know is that once I saw they were back in New York and in the familiar Atlas building, I felt like the show was home again.

To most of my friends, the fact that I like this show is pretty funny to them. I’m not what you’d call a real fashionista. My style borders on sort of rocker/goth/punk/diva…..and that’s only when I feel like dressing up. When I don’t feel like dressing up you’d be just as likely to find me walking around town in yoga pants and a baseball cap. Hey, I’m a writer, I don’t need to dress up. (well, at least that’s what I tell myself).

Nine times out of ten when I watch the final runway show, I never know what to think. Usually the styles I like are the ones the judges hate and vice versa. So imagine my surprise when the judges and I agreed on an outfit. From the moment I saw Seth, based on his own personal style, I knew he was going to design things that I would like and want to wear. To have the judges agree was a shock.

Another designer that stood out for me tonight was Ping, mostly because I was prepared to dislike whatever she sent down the runway. If there was anyone who was the exact opposite of what I like in fashion, it would be her. Once again, imagine my surprise when I ended up not only liking it, but the judges did too.

As for tonight’s winner, Emilio, I actually liked his dress too. The work he put into it really showed and it was quite a work of art.

Overall a nice opening to the new season that has me hopeful that a return to New York was exactly what this show needed.

Fashion Bug

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Positively Positive Review – The Rachel Zoe Project: Pin Thin and Pissed Off

by on Sep.15, 2009, under Drama, Reality, Television

I have to say that if anyone had told me even a year ago that I would end up liking a show about a Hollywood stylist I would’ve laughed in their face. Now don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against style or stylists. I guess I’ve always just pictured them as people who are really snobby, looking down on us “little people” with disdain.

After seeing a few episodes of this show I see now that I was wrong. Rachel is simply a woman with a job. Yes it’s an unusual job and yes it allows her to do things and meet people that some of us can only wish about, but in the end it’s a job and in my opinion she does it really well. I wouldn’t mind having her style me at all.

I also have to admit that, at first. I found her associate Brad a little annoying, but now he’s really starting to grow on me. I find that I’m laughing out loud at least a few times during the show from his antics, which is always a good thing.

It’s also true that in the beginning I liked Taylor, but now actually find her quite annoying as she’s usually grumpy. When she’s in a good mood though, she can still be fun to watch.

I love seeing all the fashion on the show and the clothes really are another member of the “cast”. Some of the stuff is so beautiful, I just wish I could afford it. Sigh.

Overall a really fun show to watch and I’m looking forward to seeing the rest of this season.

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