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Jimmy Kimmel Live! (2003– )
Former Tonight Show Watcher On Board With Real Jimmy
6 March 2014
Having watched several years of Carson and Leno, I was really unprepared for Jimmy Fallon. I had known him a little from Saturday Night Live and had seen a few minutes of his late show, but really not enough to make a formed opinion.

I barely made it through his first Tonight Show. Fallon is much like a child screaming "look at me" as he goes down a slide... it's not very entertaining, it can be annoying and it takes no talent.

I had watched a few episodes of Jimmy Kimmel's show prior to Leno leaving and he seemed okay. Not being a fan of Letterman, I decided to give Kimmel a try before permanently switching to reruns of Everybody Loves Raymond.

I've been watching Kimmel for several weeks now and unlike Fallon, he is very funny, his jokes are crafted and most importantly he feels honest. Perhaps one of my biggest complaints about Fallon is that he is extremely fake and put-together. He recently even did a polar plunge in his "signature" suit. How ridiculously fake is that?

I compare that to Kimmel who wore a loomed suit made of rubber bands for an entire show for a good cause. He even choked up a bit talking to the child on-stage. It was honest emotion and gave him humanity that Fallon just does not have.

For those who've never seen his Thursday "Censored" bit, it really can be quite funny. If you enjoyed Leno's "Headlines" you might like this also.
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CBS This Morning (1992– )
Actual News in the Morning
26 March 2013
I watched the Today show for decades until they fired Ann Curry. Today used to be very dependable, starting with hard news and graduating to entertainment fluff, and finally degrading to drunkenness. While I do enjoy entertainment news to an extent, it's not what I want first thing in the morning. I want to know what's shaping the world.

Since Dan Rather, I've tended to avoid CBS news broadcasts because of their known biases (not that NBC doesn't have the same). When I tuned into CBS This Morning one day I fully expected an hour of Tom Cruise and Rosie still bashing former President Bush.

However, I was pleasantly surprised to find real, engaging news stories. I couldn't help myself but to occasionally switch over to Today to see what was happening there. From the first half hour to the last, they were miles apart. While CBS was discussing the current situation in Iraq, the Today show had a panel of men discussing what made women hot to them; while CBS was talking about the effects of debt, Today was having some sort of goofy parade of people dressed up in odd costumes outside their studio. CBS This Morning is what the Today show was at it's best years ago.

If you haven't given the broadcast a chance, and are frustrated with other morning news, I strongly urge you to give CBS This Morning a try.
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Dare (2009)
Not A Typical Teen Movie
19 August 2012
Warning: Spoilers
I wouldn't call this a typical teen angst movie. It has some interesting twists and a surprising bit of innocence that you wouldn't guess from the trailers and descriptions.

Zach Gilford, Ashley Springer and Ana Gasteyer were the highlights of the film for me. (I'm not normally a fan of Ana's work, but I liked her in this.)

Warning, the rest is a potential Spoiler...

Alan Cumming's role is quite short, but his his character's words perhaps explain more about the actual story than anyone else's. If you watch the movie and find yourself scratching your head when the end credits roll, go back and watch his scenes. How is a great actor created? Do life lessons that just happen to you naturally because of who you are have a bigger impact on your life than ones you unnaturally try to force to occur? I think those questions play a big part in how the characters end up.

Overall I think it's a good movie, a bit more complicated than some, no easy answers or simple conclusion. If you're the kind of person who tries hard to present yourself as something that you're not, you may appreciate this movie more than others.
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The Voice (2011– )
A Tainted Show
27 April 2011
I am updating my review of The Voice due to Blake Shelton's actions on the show. I originally felt this show was about finding the best voice. However, Mr. Shelton has admitted in an interview he purposely picked a contestant over others because she was a girl. This admission goes similar to what he said on air at the time of the decision, admitting he had not chosen the best voice.

My original review follows...

I love music, but never enjoyed American Idol. I didn't like it's bad singers, age limits and overall negativity. I also didn't enjoy seeing bad singers being put on the air simply to make fun of them.

The Voice is nothing like that. The contestants are all great singers and the coaches fight for the best talent.

The coaches are a joy to watch, having fun, laughing and letting the moment move them. They seem as excited as the contestants are.

The Voice is a completely Idol-backwards and positive approach to finding great talent.

If you want something positive to watch for a change, this show is it.
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