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May 09, 2011 - Image 9

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Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2011-05-09

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Monday, May 9, 2011
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

9

'NBC's 'Voice' is strong with this one

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itzy new singing tioning performers, and can only
turn to see what the performer
npetition strikes looks like by committing to be their
coach. While the fact that judg-
he right chords ments are made on voice alone is
the namesake for the show, what's
By JAMIE BLOCK genuinely entertaining about this
Daily Arts Writer twist is that it's genuinely sus-
penseftff whether someone is going
arently nobody told NBC to make it to the next round at all.
inging competition shows Sure, that suspense is present to a
pposed to degree in all reality show auditions,
'here was but there's something about watch-
no reason ing a celebrity's hand hovering
he Voice" The Voice pensively over a big red button that
good. It's Tuesdays brings it to another level.
hameless at10 p.m The other gimmick is that the
can Idol" four judges are in competition with
off with NBC one' another to coach the winning
of annoy- performer. Each judge assembles a
t in Carson Daly and a couple teaniof eight singers in the first two
over-promoted gimmicks. episodes that will be whittled down
ile parts of it are undeniably over the course of the show until a
the majority of it is refresh- final winner is chosen by voters.
ndearing and entertaining. And watching the judges compete
first of the two gimmicks, forthe performers isfantastic.
ind auditions," turns out to We've got Adam Levine of
resting not for its novelty, Maroon 5 being a little rascal and
its suspense. The deal with stirring up conflict; there's pop
uditions is: The four judges star Christina Aguilera being a
worry, we'll get to them very grounded, intelligent commenta-
it facing away from the audi- tor, thus pulling the role of "nice

female judge" out from the pit
Paula Abdul threw it into; there's
Cee Lo Green of "Fuck You" fame
being exuberant, soulful and hon-
estly just happy to be there; and
finally there's country artist Blake
Shelton looking incredulous all
the time and acting like everyone's
supportive dad.
Take note, 'Idol'
producers.
Maybe there are writers or
maybe the judges are just cool peo-
ple, but the banter between them is
awesome. You get the feeling these
four superstars would actually go
out for drinks together after the
show. And you would want to go
with them! They're kind, they're
witty, they're talented and they're
incredibly welcoming. They save
"The Voice" from Carson Daly
and the excessive glitz that's been
thrown into it.
Moving forward, the next epi-

Who wouldn't want to grab a beer with these kind folks?
sode begins the "battle rounds," knows it's actually good. Even
wherein each'coach will pit mem- within itself, the show is exces-
bers of their own teams against sively promoted. What makes the
each other, singing the same song judges and contestants so lovable is
at the same time, like Scott Pil- their grounded vibe and desire to
grim vs. the Katayanagi twins. focus on singing. But this clashes
Given that everyone on the show is with the show's grand-scale, in-
especially enjoyable to watch, this your-face-all-the-time produc-
promises to be a fun exercise, even tion. It's like NBC is a small child,
though it does seem a bit odd when running around going, "Are you
it comes to accurately evaluating watching yet? Are you watching
someone's voice. yet? Are you watching yet?" Yes,
The main problem with "The NBC, we are, and it's very good. So
Voice" just might be that NBC please stop yelling about it.

Cheap humor and stock characters in 'Bridesmaids'

By EMILY BOUDREAU
Daily Arts Writer
There's nothing funnier than
watching a bunch of girls in
ugly dresses
sabotage each **
other. Except,
that's not what BndeSnlaldS
"Bridesmaids" At Quality 16
is about. and Rave
Annie's
(Kristen Wiig, Universal
"Saturday Night
Live") life is falling apart. Her bak-
ery, originally called Cake Baby,
went out of business. The sign
above the door now reads "Cock
Baby." She lives with an incredibly
odd pair of British twins. Her slam
piece (Jon Hamm, "The Town") is
really kind of an asshole, despite
his dashing good looks. Then, her
best friend Lillian (Maya Rudolph,
"Away We Go") asks her to be
maid of honor at her upcoming
wedding. The job turns out to be
much more than Annie bargained
for and threatens to push her life

even further downhill.
The casthastremendous comedic
potential and it's hard not to wonder
if it has been used correctly. For the
most part, the characters just seem
to fill stereotypes. There's the inno-
cent newlywed (Ellie Kemper, TV's
"The Office") as well as the desper-
ate housewife (Wendi McLendon-
Covey, TV's "Reno 911"). At times,
it's difficult to even write them off
as stereotypes because they liter-
ally just stand in the background.
Of course, comedies do tend to use
stock characters like these but at
least the characters are given reign
to fulfill their storyline. In "Brides-
maids," these actresses aren't even
given that opportunity. The one
character who does develop a little
bit, Megan (Melissa McCarthy, TV's
"Gilmore Girls"), seems to be some
kind of a riff off Zach Galifianakis's
character from "The Hangover."
And it's really disturbing. Let's just
say there's some role-playing with
food and leave it at that.
Of course, there are lots of dis-
turbing things. At one point, the

"Bridesmaids" and guys do stuff
like that in his movies all the time
- the only difference is that these
comedians are women. Whether or
not any kind of disgust is the result
of bad taste or some kind of societal
gender inequality remains to be
seen.
That's not to say that everything
in the movie is reduced to vari-
ous versions of a fart joke. There
are actually some genuinely funny
parts. Wiig really shines through at
points, including an airplane scene
where her maneuvers to sneak into
the first-class cabin after downing
some pills and a scotch are actually
quite funny.Atotherpoints,though,
she overdoes it and her antics can
become a little monotonous.
However, at no point does the
movie regress into some kind of
easy-breezy chick flick. OK, it is
a chick flick. But it's a new kind of
chick flick that doesn't rely on a
love story alone. Sadly, what it does
rely on is a subversion the talents
of some honestly funny women in
order to pull of a cheap laugh.

cOURTESY oF UNIVERSAL
"OMG! He put a ring on it!"
girls are trying on dresses and they a wedding dress and takes a dump
all come down with food poison- in the middle of the street. It's hard
ing. There's vomit flying every- to say if it's genuinely funny or just
where and Rudolph runs outside in plain weird. Judd Apatow produced

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