The weather is miserable, I'm feeling grumpy, so here's a rare Sunday blog post so everyone can share my vitriol.
WHAT'S IN A NAME? WHAT'S IN A NETWORK?
Keenen Ivory Wayans is planning with the Fox network to unleash a reboot of his 1990s sketch comedy/variety series In Living Color. The original show ran from 1990-1994 and launched the careers of Jim Carrey, Damon Wayans, David Alan Grier, Jamie Foxx, even Jennifer Lopez, and at least 50 other members of the Wayans family.
But I digress.
Now the plan is to do two half-hour specials executive produced and hosted by Keenen Ivory Wayans, and if they go well, kick off a new series the next season.
I can understand Wayans wanting to do a sketch show. Sketch comedy is a hell of a lot work, but it's also a hell of a lot of fun, and it's one of the few shows where lower production values are actually an asset, and if he can find some young hungry talent along the lines of the last time, more power too him.
I just wish he'd give this new project another title.
You see back when In Living Color originally debuted the Fox network consisted of The Simpsons, Married... With Children, and not much else. The show did well for any network, but did stupendously for a struggling still fledgling network like Fox. Giving the new show the old title puts a lot of baggage on it, and if it doesn't explode in the same relative way as the original, the network's going to judge it more harshly this time as an "under-performer." Fox is a much larger, more corporate organization now, and probably much less prone to risk taking.
Then there's the fact that mainstream network television and sketch comedy in prime time haven't really done well together in a very long time. Sketch comedy is by it's very nature fractured, button pushing, and at it's best politically incorrect, and unlike sitcoms and hour long dramas, very hard for the network to control, content wise. Wayans himself regularly battled the network over censorship, and that's something that's bound to happen again.
I think Wayans would be much happier and the project better off if it had a different title, that didn't have the expectations laid on the original, and was on Fox's sister cable channel FX. It'll leave him free to explore the edgier material he and his fans like, and would fit in better with the channel's audience, already known for loving edgy, politically incorrect comedy.
MANAGER FORGETS JOB, MANAGER LOSES JOB
Academy Award Winning Actress Hillary Swank has fired her manager Jason Weinberg.
The reason for the firing was probably not for her failure to land a third Oscar for her Amelia Earhart movie but over a birthday party.
You see a while back Swank and several other celebrities attended and entertained at the birthday party for the dictator of Chechnya. Miss Swank was promptly shat upon by both conservative pundits and human rights watchdogs for showing up to entertain a dictator who has shat upon the rights and lives of so many of his own citizens.
And that's why she fired her manager.
You see, it's the job of the manager to look at a job offer like this and see past the dollar signs to the overall, long term affects such a move would have on their client's career.
The former Soviet Republic has never been involved in any fashionable causes, so I will bet dollars to donuts that Miss Swank had never even heard of Chechnya before getting the invite to the party, or the bloody record of her host. So you can't really blame her for bad judgment, she's an actor.
Her manager though is a different story.
You see every choice you make has consequences. There are costs, and there are benefits. Actors are too busy wondering about their character's motivation for the scene of them eating breakfast, and their next appointment with their Pilates instructor to think about real world matters like that.
That's the manager's job.
The manager should have taken one look at the offer, done a Google search on the birthday boy, and then wondered if blowing kisses at a bloodthirsty dictator might cost their client more than the amount being offered.
Miss Swank's manager failed to do his due diligence, and that's why he got sacked.