September 23, 2013 § Leave a comment
Danielle Bradbery took top honors on “The Voice” last season, becoming, at age 16, the youngest singer in the show’s four-season-long history to do so. The Texas teen’s first single, “The Heart of Dixie,” released in July, a week before her 17th birthday, showed off her pipes and her country-music-star potential, hitting No. 16 on the Billboard country songs chart. Her debut album, due out in November, is already generating buzz among fans of her silky vocals and sweet stage presence.
Will this season of “The Voice” — in which the show’s original four coach/mentors will reunite, as Christina Aguilera and CeeLo Green return to their stately, spinning red chairs – find as worthy a winner? I’ll again be in my (alas, stationary and far less majestic) TV chair, tracking the competition for the Los Angeles Times. The show has just snagged an Emmy, proving its high ratings are not for nothing. Why not watch with me?
‘The Voice’ recap: Night 4 of blinds shows value of second chances (Los Angeles Times)
‘The Voice’ recap: Coaches play nice as blind auditions continue (Los Angeles Times)
‘The Voice’ recap: Talents impress in second night of blinds (Los Angeles Times)
‘The Voice’ recap: The old gang’s back for Season 5 (Los Angeles Times)
January 11, 2013 § Leave a comment
If the anonymous author of “Elimination Night,” a fictional confection set behind the scenes of a singing-competition TV show very much — perhaps exactly — like “American Idol,” is difficult to identify, the same cannot be said of most of the satirical novel’s characters.
There’s “erect-nippled” British judge Nigel Crowther, avuncular session musician JD Coolz, workaholic “HostBot” Wayne Shoreline, glamorous Bibi Vasquez (her big hit: “Bibi From the Hood”), aging recovering-addict rock star Joey Lovecraft.
If these characters don’t sound familiar, you’re clearly not an “American Idol” watcher, and “Elimination Night” probably isn’t a book for you. If, however, you’re ticking off the names Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson, Ryan Seacrest, Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler in your head, you may find yourself tempted to troll this send-up for “Idol” secrets spilled by the author, purportedly a show insider …
‘Elimination Night’ — What would the ‘Idol’ judges say? (Los Angeles Times)
February 3, 2012 § Leave a comment
I’m blogging about “American Idol” for the Los Angeles Times again this season. It’s my third time around on Showtracker “Idol” duty, and I’m looking forward to a great Season 11. If the auditions, which just wrapped up in St. Louis, are any indication, we’ll see a lot of talent crowding the stage in Hollywood. (Hooray for that!) “Idol” judges Randy Jackson, Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler will have their work cut out for them when it comes to winnowing down the masses to a handful of finalists. Of course, there are always a few contestants who start out strong, only to take a heartbreaking tumble when the going gets tough in Tinseltown. Who will it be? Stay tuned …
Showtracker: “American Idol” recaps (Los Angeles Times)
January 18, 2012 § Leave a comment
“Glee” has rounded the corner to the second half of its third season. As Rachel, Finn, Kurt and other New Directions members contemplate life after McKinley High, I continue to chart their high school heartaches and hard choices in the Los Angeles Times’ TV blog, Showtracker. Will Finn and Rachel marry? Will New Directions thwart that villain Sebastian and beat Dalton’s Warblers at Regionals? I, for one, can’t wait to find out.
Showtracker: “Glee” recaps (Los Angeles Times)
December 23, 2011 § Leave a comment
It took many “X Factor” viewers a long time to forgive judge Simon Cowell for sending the show’s eventual winner, Melanie Amaro, home early in the show’s first season — only to dramatically bring her back again — but Amaro said she didn’t find it difficult to let Cowell off the hook for his mistake. “He was so sincere about coming back to my house and apologizing about everything that I could not stay mad at all,” she told me during a conference call the day after her big win. “I mean, I was hurt at first, but I forgave and forgot and let go. I really made peace with it.”
So what does the 19-year-old singer plan to do with her $5 million “X Factor” payday? “I’m definitely going to buy myself a foot massager and buy my mom a new house,” she said.
Showtracker: “The X Factor” recaps (Los Angeles Times)
June 17, 2011 § Leave a comment
Now that “American Idol” and “Glee,” which I recapped for the Los Angeles Times, have wrapped up their seasons (read my takes on the season finales here and here), what am I doing with all my free time? Recapping “America’s Got Talent,” that’s what. Never having watched the popular NBC summer show before this season, I’m just getting used to the needling Howie Mandel-Sharon Osbourne-Piers Morgan judge dynamic, to the confounding combination of amateur and professional acts, and to the “Gong Show” and “Real People”/”That’s Incredible!” flashbacks from my youth. (Where are the Unknown Comic and Gene Gene the Dancing Machine when you need them?) If only Nick Cannon could master the Chuck Barris fake clap ….
Showtracker: “America’s Got Talent” recaps (Los Angeles Times)
September 16, 2010 § Leave a comment
Just because kids like foods that are gross to grownups (I’m looking at you, bubblegum ice cream) doesn’t mean they have no taste at all. Kids can be surprisingly discerning viewers when it comes to TV. This fall’s impressive slate of new kid-oriented shows has a lot to please children as well as their parents — from an adorable claymation sheep to a hyperactive animated antihero battling a villain named Dorkus to a trio of intergalactic escapees bonding together “sym-bionically” to save the Earth. Here are a few shows to watch for …
Fall TV preview: Kid-oriented shows (Los Angeles Times)