OPINIONATRIX…because my opinions dominate

{November 18, 2008}   The Sad Decline of Heroes…


Last night, I did something I couldn’t have imagined doing two years ago: I erased this weeks episode of Heroes from my DVR without watching it.  I know, I know, how can I possibly call myself a fan? Well folks, the sad truth is, I can’t.  Can anyone?  Seriously, who enjoys this show anymore? Heroes started out with so much potential.  It encompassed an interesting storyline, filled with a diverse cast, conflicted characters and magical powers.  It introduced problems and questions fast and then quickly followed them up with action that led to answers.  Honestly, the first season unraveled almost perfectly.  Mystery, character development, action and eye candy (hello Sendhil Ramamurthy)!  Who’d have thought things could go so wrong.

Last season I chalked up the misteps in plot to the writers strike that plagued all of TV.  This season there is no excuse.  I am not alone in my opinions either.  The ratings have declined tremendously, and friends of mine who used to be avid fans have since abandoned ship. The problems are wide and varied but I think one thing stands out among the rest.  This show started out as a show about conflicted characters who were trying to discover who they were as people.  Sure there was action sequences and “bad guy” fighting mixed in there, but at the core the show as about it’s characters trying to live ordinary lives as extraordinary people.  Currently, Heroes has too many characters (most of which are under developed at best) and the mythology has taken over the show.  I am unable to keep track of storylines and timelines and frankly I don’t care.  This is a case of trying to hard.  Sometimes simple is better.

Frankly, as disapointed as I am, I am happy to be freed from it’s crazyness.  Glad that I’ll no longer have to watch it linger on my DVR playlist until I feel guilty enough to watch it.  To anyone out there who still enoys this show – power to you.  To everyone else – fear not! Lost returns soon.


I love Desperate Housewives.  I have been a fan since season one and even stuck by it during the “Betty Applewhite season 2 slump.”  This show is the perfect blend of quirky, over-the-top, backstabbing fun and I look forward to it every week.

I think the 5 year jump forward has served this season very well.  It allowed the writers to create a virtually new show, without abandoning the characters fans have grown to love.  So far, I think most of the stories are entertaining and juicy.  I look forward to see where this season takes us.

Unfortunately, I do have one criticism. The Gabby storyline.  Don’t get me wrong, I love the fact that Gabby has become a frumpy, cash strapped mother of two.  What I am not a fan of is the “fat children” story.  This show has enough material to work with, without using the plight of chubby children to get laughs.  I get it.  Gabby is image obsessed and yet has to contend with two overweight children.  I just think it hits a sour note.  I feel bad judging the appearance of kids.  I mean these characters are supposed to be under 5 years old, and we are laughing at their expense?!  Surely this isn’t necessary.  A funnier story would be for Gabby’s kids to be just as image obsessed as she used to be, and to be embarrassed of their mothers looks, style, lack of expensive things, etc.  I would feel much more comfortable indulging in a little schadenfruede if it was aimed at an adult.

I remember reading somewhere that the cast and crew go to great lengths not to shoot the scenes disparaging the looks of the two child actresses in front of them, but kids are perceptive.   Surely this has to affect them.  It’s not that I don’t think this story line is fair game, lord knows there are worse things on TV these days.  I just think that a show like Desperate Housewives which has so much to work with, it is completely unnecessary.

{September 23, 2008}   And The Emmy Goes To

I don’t know exactly what I expected from “The 60th Primetime Emmy’s.”   By now I’ve learned that, on the whole, awards shows are never that entertaining.  So why tune in?  I have always been a fan of television and watch more than I probably should. I’m a true fan, and can appreciate both a brilliant series and an enormously guilty pleasure. So I suppose when I turned on the TV last night, I expected to watch a show that would adequately honor the people who help to create the medium I love so much.  Sadly, I was disappointed.

The host of an awards show is extremelly important.  This was last evenings telecasts’ major downfall.  The 5 hosts (Heidi Klum, Howie Mandel, Tom Bergeron, Ryan Secrest and Jeff Probst) were unprepared and decidedly unoriginal. Instead of opening the show with a bang, they babbled on about nothing; entertaining no one and making the viewer feel both awkward and uncomfortable.

The show somehow managed to feel bloated and rushed simultaneously, and the highlights and funny moments were few and far between.  Josh Groban’s ode to popular TV theme songs was fun, but could not make up for the lack of inspiration that was the rest of the evening.  Furthermore, the fact that the recipients were “banned” from talking about politics was ridiculous.  What ever happened to free speech?!  However, it did give way to some funny moments such as the John Stewart/Stephen Colbert debate about prunes.

Overall, I was happy with the winners.  I hope all the accolades help to draw more viewers to the magic that is 30 Rock and Mad Men (both remarkable series).  However, in the future I pray that the Academy will think of a better way to honor an industry that really deserves more than what this years show delivered.

As someone who has never been into sports, it has really surprised me how intrigued I have been by the Olympics. It’s just so exciting! Between all the triumphs, scandals and news you’d have to be living under a rock to not get at least a little sucked in. However, as much as I am enjoying the games – and I am enjoying them – one thing has me a little peeved. Michael Phelps.

I get it, he can swim. But what about sharing the spotlight ? Last time I checked it was the US swim team we sent to Beijing – not the Michael Phelps show. I am not putting down his abilities. I realize what an amazing athlete he is and by no means want to take that away from him, but what about all our other swimmers? Dara Torres, Katie Hoff, Jason Lezak, Peter Vanderkaay and countless others – all of whom have medaled in the 2008 games.

And yet, all we seem to hear is Phelps, Phelps, Phelps. Even his mother is now recognizable to anyone who has been watching the games due to the constant footage of her cheering in the stands. We have been subjected to news story after news story about him – down to his diet! I’m not saying forget about him but let’s give it a rest for a while. I mean honestly, how many medals does one guy need? That cheering mother of his should have taught him about sharing (if not the medals, at least the spotlight).

I don’t know why I’m surprised. I really shouldn’t be. After all, John Edwards is just another in a long line of politicians to cheat on his wife. Now a days it seems that political affairs are just part of the Washington DC landscape. All that being said, I am still shocked. Honestly, I don’t know what surprises me more:

A) that John Edwards, the seemingly genuine and honest son of a mill worker, betrayed his wife and family


B) that the National Enquirer actually broke a real story!

Maybe I’m naive, but I really believed Edwards when he claimed that the rumors were just tabloid trash. What angers me more is Edwards’ arrogance and outright dishonesty. In his statement yesterday he claims he had been “99% honest.” 99% HONEST! I didn’t know honesty worked on a continuum! Oh thats right, it doesn’t. Either you are telling the truth, or you’re not. What if he had been the nominee? He would have lost the election for the Democratic party, and for what? Because he couldn’t keep it in his pants?! He knew this skeleton was in his closet, yet he was arrogant enough to think he wouldn’t get caught. He sold us all a perfect, all American image – and now I feel stupid, because I bought it!

Edwards claims that he is outright positive that Reille Hunter’s child is not his. He has not taken a paternity test – so there is not way to be truly sure. This man has lost all credibility with me… I don’t know what to believe. Furthermore, even though someone else has claimed paternity, Reille Hunter and her family think Edwards is the father. At this point… this all remains up in the air.

It is Elizabeth Edwards who I really feel sorry for in this scenario. This poor woman! Not only has she had to contend with the loss of a child, a grueling battle with cancer and fertility issues, but now she has to face public humiliation. She has done nothing but support Senator Edwards. Even when told her cancer was terminal she pushed on, helping to run both a political campaign and a family. She deserves a medal.

John Edwards has seriously disappointed me, but I think the best thing to do at this point is to leave this story alone. He has ruined his reputation. Now instead of being know as a 2 time presidential candidate and American Senator who rose up from nothing to become something, he will be remembered as “that sleaze ball who cheated on his wife while she was dying of cancer.”

My mother taught me long ago that your reputation follows you everywhere, and that trust has to be earned. Senator Edwards has now lost both in the eyes of the American public. I hope it was worth it.

Politics is a dirty game, so it comes as no surprise that despite vows and promises to keep the 2008 campaign focused on the issues, that when push came to shove, the candidates began swinging the mud. This really doesn’t shock me. Disappoint and annoy me? Yes. But shock? No – most certainly not. In fact, it would be naive to think that the fight wouldn’t get dirty sooner or later.

I think what I find almost humorous though are the types of things being said by the McCain campaign to diminish Barack Obama. Instead of the usual political allegations of misrepresentation, drug use, dishonesty and a litany of other negative onslaughts, opponents of Obama claim he is too elitist, arrogant, slim, fit, healthy and popular. Really? I mean seriously?

Maybe I am missing something here but what is wrong with a president who is smart, well spoken, healthy and liked abroad as well as at home? Isn’t that the goal? Personally I want a president who knows what he is talking about, looks healthy and gets along with foreign nations. Right now these are some of the major concerns that we as a country are facing; a downturn in education, a rise in obesity and negative relations with foreign countries. It seems to me that these are attributes to be admired in Barack Obama, not criticized.

Furthermore, I am so sick and tired of John McCain’s games. First he goads Obama into taking a Middle Eastern trip, only to later criticize him for leaving the country. Then he takes statements garnered from Obama’s town halls (like the tire guage comment) and misrepresents them making Obama look idiotic. Lastly the Britney Spears/ Paris Hilton advertisement scraped the bottom of the barrel. McCain is playing dirty and immaturely. Whatever credibility he had previously is slowly diminishing with each low blow he delivers. Doesn’t he realize that in the end he is only making himself look bad?

If everyone could see through this game, I wouldn’t be so angry. It is precisely because there are people who are buying into the McCain rhetoric that I am worried and dismayed. I think both politicians vowed to play this game clean and fair. That does not mean they cannot criticize each other – just that when they do, they should stick to the facts!

I am not a fashionista, nor am I the arbiter of taste, but how the hell did gladiator sandals become the shoes of the summer?! I surely cannot be alone in thinking that these shoes do not flatter even the most fantabulous of legs. Seriously, not even the gladiators could pull them off.

This summer, everyone from friends to Hollywood starlets have been sporting these, and I am truly confused. This is not just a shoe that I personally find unappealing, this shoe is universally unflattering… so what is it about gladiator sandals that has people going gaga?

The only plausible explanation I can think of is that some designer decided to try and fashion the ugliest footwear ever just to see if he could make it a trend. Well, the joke’s on us, or rather you, since I wouldn’t be caught dead in these. Not even if you paid me.

{July 4, 2008}   Time for a vacation?

Summer brings upon us a general desire to kick back, relax and take it easy. That’s why it’s called summer vacation! Technically I guess only students and teachers get a “real” summer vacation, but the rest of us can dream right? Or at least take a week or so to get away from it all and enjoy the season.

This year, with the economy being in the toilet you might think a vacation is out of the picture. I mean after all, the dollar is now so low I fear we may soon have to dig for it. Luckily there is another way to get away, see another country and really broaden your horizons. How? VOLUNTEER VACATIONS… that’s how.

There are now a number of companies that offer cheaper travel options in exchange for your volunteer service. There is truly something for everyone, from cleaning up the amazon trail to working on a kibbutz in Israel.

This is awesome! The fact that you are guaranteed an eye opening experience coupled with the opportunity to give back makes the vacation extra special. Sure beats sitting on a beach huh?

For more info on volunteer vacations click here.

{June 9, 2008}   This is just cruel

It is inevitable that during your childhood your parents will embarrass you. I am still trying to get over all the times my father insisted he drive me to school in his 1950’s era “classic car,” or all the horrendous get-ups my mother insisted I wear (complete with hats). But this is just ridiculous.

I tend to think babies in overly adorned outfits or cute costumes are OK. Best let the parents get it out of their systems before the kid is old enough to be scarred by the memory (although take it from me – pictures are everlasting) However, this is more torture than anything Anne Geddes has ever dared to dream.

Children should never be dressed as dinner… EVER.

{May 29, 2008}   I Scream AT Ice Cream…

We are now on the precipice of the full blown summer season, which is so exciting because along with summer comes fun, sun and of course ICE CREAM!

I am a huge fan of ice cream…. especially when bought straight from the ice cream man (you know with the truck and everything?)… it just brings back more innocent times. However, when there is no truck it’s always nice to have a great carton of creamy goodness waiting for you in the freezer. Personally, my favorite brand is Edy’s Slow Churned.

Unfortunately the other day when I skipped to the grocery store anticipating the purchase of a new carton to replace my recently eaten one I made a horrifying discovery! Edy’s has decreased the size of their ice cream cartons but the price has stayed the same!

DID THEY THINK I WOULDN”T NOTICE????? The carton is clearly smaller… as in it is really obvious…. even a blind person would notice. I am sooooooooooo annoyed… I know this is all a sign of increased food prices and blah, blah, blah but I am feeling angry.

Sadly, my need for ice cream has trumped my anger and thus I will continue to buy Edy’s Slow Churned goodness…. but I do want it noted that I am not taking this lightly….

et cetera