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June 02, 2008 - Image 9

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Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2008-06-02

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Monday, June 2, 2008
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

9

Usher returns

Satisfying "Sex"

By DAVID WATNICK
Daily Arts Writer
On any list of the top vocal-
ists in contemporary popular
music, Usher must hover
very close to the top. But in
the face of
his firmly
established
superstar-
dom, the
tremen- Here I Stand
dous tal- LaFace
ent that
enabled
him to
become such a fixture of the
pop landscape has unfortu-
nately, but predictably, taken
a backseat to

full-length, HereIStand,have
to do with this pocket trea-
tise? Well, as merely another
facet of Usher's diversified
industries, its forgettable
content is sure to be a storm-
ing success just like it should
be by riding the coattails of
the brand-name that adorns
the cover in big red caps.
Uneven at best, Here
I Stand still has its abso-
lute highs, most of which it
reaches when it functions as
a vehicle for Usher's estab-
lished vocal prowess. The
tragicallyabbreviated"Intro"
finds Usher pouring his rich
tenor onto a sparse, bourbon-
soaked New Orleans piano
dirge to excel-

HBO show hits the big
screen in high style
despite occasional
mis-steps
By ANNIE LEVENE
Daily Arts Writer
Somewhere between middle school
and the end of the series in 2004, my
friends and I became genuine "Sex and
the City" fanatics.
Every Sunday we
would hold "Sex and
the City" parties, Sex and
thinking ourselves
just as fabulous as the City
those infamous New
Yorkers on our TV At Qualityl6
screens. We didn't and Showcase
have the cocktails New Line
or Manolo Blahniks
but we could relate to the bonds of
friendship the ladies shared. Look-
ing back, it's hard to picture how our
mothers must have felt knowing their
16-year-old daughters were finding
mentors in what were basically cari-
catures of sexually promiscuous older

his face, style, lentresult. Sim-
cologne, music - ilar magic is
business inter- Trenudy artist conjured above
ests, ownership fails CO break a soft funk gui-
stake in Leb- fails tar swagger on
ron's team and the mold "Something
even his acting. * Special," when
But it's no sur- Usher delivers
prise. This is legitimate soul
what happens and manages to
to our stars - they become a maintain it even after a drum
brand. machine beat
So what does Usher's new See USHER, Page 11

"Yes, we A RE fabulous, aren't we?"
women. I remember my mother ratio-
nalizing that while the characters
were not necessarily role models, they
were examples of strong and success-
ful women. Now, let me pull a Carrie
Bradshaw and wonder aloud as I type
into my laptop at my apartment in New
York City. Are women like fine wine -

do they get better with age? Four years
after the HBO series ended, the "Sex
and the City" movie seeks to prove
that, yes, they do.
The film picks up where the series
left off, Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker)
has finally found "the one," Miranda
See SEX AND THE CITY, Page 12

Celeb-reality hits new lows on E!

By TRINA MANNINO
For the Daily
This Memorial Day, E! Entertain-
ment gave America a real treat. Not
one,but two celeb-
reality shows
debuted: "Denise
Richards: It's Denise
Complicated" and Richards It
"Living Lohan."
These two new Compicated
shows aren't your
run-of-the-mill
celeb-realityseries . .
featuring dysfunc-
tional families, Sundays at
tinylittledogs,and 10-11 p.m.
stupid plotlines. El
Instead, these
shows include
not only the previously mentioned
components of a so-bad-it's-good

celeb-reality show, but also managed
to sink even deeper. The main "char-
acters," Denise Richards and Dina
Lohan, exploit their families while
trying to put various nasty rumors to
rest and going to extreme lengths to
keep themselves in the spotlight.
"It's Complicated" follows the
life of B-list actress Denise Richards
("Starship Troopers") post Charlie
Sheen divorce. The show's main pur-
pose is to defuse the rampant tabloid
rumors concerning said divorce and
her terrible taste in men. Richards
desperately tries to portray her life
as wholesome and normal by show-
ing her interaction with her two
daughters, live-in dad, and menag-
erie of pets, which includes three
pot-bellied pigs. The first episode
reveals that after being divorced for
two years, the actress has casually
dated both actors and rockers, most

notably ex-best friend Heather Lock-
lear's ex-husband Richie Sambora,
and is proud of it. Denise also dem-
onstrates her normalcy by searching
for her dating history on the internet,
having a spraytan technician make a
house call, and searching for a spade
for her pig Charlotte. Meanwhile,
her two full time assistants and dad
pick up the loose ends at home.
Following the Richards's
train-wreck, "Living Lohan"
explores the lives of Lindsay
Lohan's mother, Dina, and sister,
Ali. In the show, 14 year-old Ali is
in the midst of recording her sec-
ond album and aspires to be just
like big sis and paparazzi favorite
LiLo. Dina fills in as Ali's under-
qualified manager and claims she
wants Ali to follow her dreams of
becoming a pop singer. However,
See REALITY SHOWS, Page 10

DENISE RICHIARDS

DINA LOHAN

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