Daytime is the right time
I was all growns up. No more summers out of school with nothing to do but tune into The Price Is Right, go swimming and play wiffleball. College was over as well, mornings spent nursing hangovers with Barker's Beauties gone with it. When I started working a 9 to 5 job, I had resigned myself to the truth that one of my favorite late morning pasttimes was gone forever.
But alas, an unlikely reunion was around the corner. When I started a new job last month, one that afforded me mornings off, I was reunited with my favorite game show of all-time. It was like I had scored a $5,000 Plinko chip. I was young again.
Though unforseen at the time, my new job had inadvertantly reopened my world to not only The Price Is Right, but to all of daytime TV. So, what are you missing? Let me give you a brief overview:
Rod Roddy, sadly, is gone. "The Voice of The Price Is Right" passed away from cancer in 2003. He was replaced by some younger, more generic-sounding dickhead. Thankfully, Barker remains stronger than ever. No American television program has ever been more reliant on its star. The old codger that he his, Barker continues to rig the studio audience selection process, allowing the 85-year-old to kiss the cheek (and presumably squeeze the ass) of no less than three 19-year-old California co-eds per episode. That's 15 co-eds a week, 780 a year, 26,520 since 1972. In a related story, Bob Barker is the coolest muthaeffa any of us have ever known.
There are a TON of court-type shows, which must be very popular because there seem to be three of them being broadcast at any given time between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Scoring a presiding judge gig on one of these shows doesn't seem too difficult -- I'm pretty sure all you need is the ability to be a hard-ass and perhaps to have taken, but not necessarily have passed, a bar exam at some point since 1960.
Personally, I'm a bit stubborn in coming around to these shows -- Judge Judy is no Judge Wapner my friends -- she's not even Judge Mills Lane, for that matter.
I grew up spending my summer vacations watching the raw and more-or-less completely dispicable "Divorce Court," a show so clear in its motives that its logo was a thumping heart image with a gaping crack splitting through it (making use of the meager '80s computer graphic arts capabilities of the time). If anyone can send me this image, I will reward you with a harem of men or women of your choice.
I used to watch DC regularly with my cousin. It was an enlightening experience, one in which we'd hear things that no two 8-year-old boys should be hearing. I mean, seriously, my mom wouldn't let me sit on the right-front area of the school bus due to its calamitous proximity to the vehicle's gas tank, yet I could sit in my aunt's house and hear lines like:
"I LOST MY JOYSTICK IN 'NAM!"
"IS IT TRUE, MR. SMITH, THAT YOU WERE IN THE BATHTUB WITH MS. JONES...PLAYING 'MILK THE COW?'"
Obviously, this was awesome.
There are a lot of commercials about diabetes starring guys that look like, but aren't quite, Wilfred Brimley...who I think died from diabetes.
MTV plays videos from 8 to 11, before launching into seven consecutive hours of Gauntlet and Real World reruns. VH-1 replays their "101 Best Dressed Sexiest Bodies Celebrity Shockingly Thin Oops Reality" program on a loop. There are enough hack comedians saying unfunny things to make your eyes bleed.
The major networks air a mid-day news show, which I'm fairly certain is just a dress rehearsal for the evening news telecast.
In talk show news, Regis and Kelly are still going strong on ABC. Meanwhile, Kathy Lee's addiction to pain pills continues to deepen while poor Frank looks for a way out...possibly the fifth floor window. Our old friend Tony Danza has recently been cancelled but is still on the air for now. But fear not Fans O' Danza...you can catch "Who's The Boss" reruns on the UPN 9. Ellen DeGeneres seems to have a very popular show on NBC. Part of me thinks I should be watching it, since both me and Ellen are huge vagina fans.
The Spanish language station broadcasts and awesome show at noon, titled Mujer, Casos de la Vida Real, which I believe loosely translates to Woman, Your House Is Very Real. I'd appreciate it if my Spanish-speaking readers could help me out with this...I am but a honky.
Good news, Geraldo is back on the airwaves, with a new show Geraldo at Large (I don't get this title, is he an escaped felon?) that broadcasts on 12:30 p.m. on NBC. Funny Geraldo story: My senior year of high school, our journalism class bussed it into Manhattan for a live Geraldo taping at then-WPIX studios.
Why our journalism teacher would take us to see GERALDO RIVERA for a lesson in the craft of newswriting is beyond me, but that's another discussion. Anyway, me and my friends all planned on making a farce of the event (naturally), which entailed being general jack-asses in the studio audience (this was not a stretch). Our goal was to anger Geraldo, if at all possible.
So, just as we seating ourselves in the back of the studio audience and plotting out our scheme to draw the ire of the Mighty G, the show producer's lead out two sobbing women onto the stage. Turns out one of the guests of the day's show was a mother whose daughter had been shot and killed by her deranged boyfriend LIKE A WEEK EARLIER. They even played 911 tapes and everything...it was brutal. Our plans to be dicks throughly trounced, we had to settle for an awkward meet-and-greet with Geraldo after the show, in which we all addressed him by pronouncing his name with a hard G...a definite no-no. "GER-RALDO! GER-RALDO! We love you!" Needless to say, he spoke with like two of us before flashing a confused smile and turning his back. Ahhhh, high school.
I'd write more, but I have some television to watch. Inside Edition has a home run on its hands today, they are airing a piece on a 7-year-old body builder named "Little Hercules." Some things you simply cannot miss.
Life is good.