Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Black Hats

I hate it when the bad guys win.

I don't mean merely on reality shows...I mean anytime. Back in 1999, Chipper Jones, star of the Atlanta Braves, said that when the Mets are eliminated from contention, their fans put on Yankee gear. Reliever John Rocker said a bunch of crap about folks who ride the 7 train to Shea. The Braves and Mets wound up in the Championship Series that year. The Braves took the first three, then the Mets snagged two at home. I forget what was funnier...watching Rocker get lit up, or watching him gesture "3-0" to fans behind the dugout. In Game 6, the Mets fell behind early (Al Leiter got knocked out in the first inning), rallied, took a lead...then lost the damn game when Kenny Rodgers walked the winning run in. Watching the Braves celebrate...seeing Rocker get interviewed in the clubhouse...gah. Didn't even watch the World Series, where the Yankees swept the Braves. And no, there wasn't any wearing of the pinstripes for me.

Three years later, the Mets were down and out, while the Braves were heading for yet another meaningful October. The last game was played at Shea. A while back, one Met got busted for possession of drugs. Anyway, manager Bobby Cox sent up a player named "Bong" to pinch-hit against the Mets. It was worse...Bong was a pitcher. You don't use a pitcher to pinch-hit. Finding out about this, I was furious. Cox basically got away with screwing with the Mets. Even as a lapsed Mets fan, I still get ticked easily. But in the end, I know what'll happen to the Braves in the end: even after winning their umpteenth division title in a row, they'll still end up getting beat down in the end. They've been in the playoffs every year since 1991, and they only have one World Series title to show for it. And I know this sounds petty, but I'm happy with that.

The same thing applies to reality television...there has to be balance. I was pissed that guys like Darrell, Rachel, Veronica and Adam won a crapload of money in The Gauntlet, and they didn't get to feel the pressure of going home. But I liked that Sarah, whom everybody thought was an inferior player, got the same amount of dough after getting shoved into five Gauntlets. Seeing Dave, Cara and Roni get paid was also cool. I can live with the bad, as long as some good comes out of it.

That brings me to Monday night. I don't have an episode title yet. How does "My Soul Hurts" sound? Or "Sore Winners"? There's poor Jodi, crying on the Inferno floor. There's Veronica, still wrapped in paper, yelling like she just cured cancer. There's Rachel and Dan, jeering Jodi from the saftey of the second floor while she cries, all because her plan backfired. Yeah, it sounded dubbed in, but it was them. In two weeks, Dan has turned from a funny guy into just another jerk on a team of jerks...and with Abram and CT on his team, that's saying something. And then there's the sight of Veronica prancing, jumping into Rachel's arms. Am I supposed to be glad these two friends aren't broken up? I've covered a lot of stuff in the past few years, and that has to be one of the most nauseating moments out there. Ranks up there with Rachel B. and Sarah on the mechanical bulls, while Chevelle plays "Send The Pain Below" in the background.

Speaking of Sarah...that was the point, wasn't it? All this time, I think to myself: Yeah, Butterface and Verantula talk big, they can shove medicine down Sarah's throat, but they couldn't take a teaspoon of it. Sure, they've been booted out of Challenges, but it was at the hands of their teammates, as opposed to somebody from the other side. If Jodi beats Veronica, it's a celebration. Sure, the Bad Asses will rag on Jodi until the end of the Challenge, but it would be worth it to see Veronica go at the earliest since way back in Battle of the Seasons. But no...Veronica lives to pimp her lame t-shirts. And she's BFF with Rachel and Dan, who fit with Coby, Lynn and Alex as the least likable representatives of gay culture on reality television. Say what you want about Karamo, but the guy is sane. He punked out of a mission, barely represented in the Inferno, and does the worst impressions this side of Peggy Hill doing Fat Albert, but he seems like a "together" guy.

I hate the Bad Asses. I've gone over Dan, Rachel and Veronica. CT acts like a gangter. Abram is Abram, and that's enough for loathing him. Derrick seems okay, but I've seen a clip of him getting into a fight later on this season. Tina? Okay in small doses, though I don't know if Coral would've gotten as lathered up as her over the same stuff. And Tonya? If you do things like toss bags into the pool, then guess what? You will be considered a joke. Man, what happened to her? She got high marks from Lori in her Battle of the Sexes recaps. Now she's a walking Girls Gone Wild ad.

The Good Guys? Whatever. First, you have to get rid of Mike (tool) and Julie (psycho). Except for that comment about Karamo wondering when his flight leaves, Shavonda hasn't bugged. Landon isn't the hard-drinkin' fool we knew from his season. Jamie's a cutie, and Brad's less of a stereotype than CT. Darrell? Still holding stuff from Gauntlet against him, though I'm still looking for some prime quotes from him.

I did get some karmic equalization tonight via The Amazing Race. At this point, you have two front-runner teams (Rob/Amber, Ron/Kelly) and two underdogs (Uchenna/Joyce, Meredith/Gretchen). Rob decides to play mind games with U/J and M/G, telling them about a flight that leaves earlier...except there is no such thing. Or so he though. Long story short, U/J and M/G managed to snag an earlier flight, and finished one-two for the leg. This is funny, especially when you see Meredith & Gretchen in action. I don't think I've seen a team this clueless get this lucky. They finished second tonight. They haven't finished in the top three all season, yet here they are. Bonus: Ace-lookalike Ron and total beeyotch girlfriend Kelly finish last, and had to give up their possessions as a penalty. Kinda sucks that thanks to a gnome-hunting minigame, they ended up with $20,000 in money to be used on a sponsor site, as well as 12 hours in a plush hotel room. They'll be fine...Kelly will say something horrible, and Ron will compare being broke to Baghdad.

As for the recap? It'll be a while. I've been getting recap fatigue...something Omar G. of TWoP felt in his latest recap of Smallville (anybody still watching? Bueller?). But hey...if I can make things more fun for you guys, then that's all that matters. I'm just inching closer to when I'll start openly cursing people out. Should be a hoot.

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