Sunday, August 22, 2010
Royal Rant: Where's My Trash Talk TV
"Go Ricki, Go Ricki.." the chant that defined my childhood. My summer mornings weren't started until I had my fill of Ricki Lake. My love and adoration for the woman who at one time made me want to be a talk show host knows no bounds. At the time I did not think of it as a trashy show, all I knew was that for an entire hour if anyone talked to me I was not a happy gay (typo that stays, because it's true) my mom always waited until the noon news started before she vacuumed for me. In high school was when I realized many people considered the show trash, by that time though it didn't matter I was hooked.
Slowly another titan of trash was making his way up the ladder. The ringmaster himself Jerry Springer came along and really made his mark. No longer was my love affair with Ricki enough, no I craved the chair throwing that happened when a guy found out his wife was sleeping with his sister, or that woman he had been sleeping with for a year was really a man. There was no better high than the first chair throw of an episode, though I always wondered how in the world someone could be having sex, and not notice that the woman had a penis, but I digress.
Then something happened. Ricki went off the air, Jerry went in to hiding and the Rosie's and Oprahs took center stage. To clarify both women are fabulous and were around but in my mind Rosie only counted because Susan Lucci, whom I idolize, was her very first guest. The queens of nice took over and there were no more trashy hosts to give me my thrill. I watched Rosie avidly, wishing instead of mooning over Tom Cruise, she would reveal that her guest had no idea that his wife had been sleeping with his best friend. Each time she asked banal questions I was disappointed, and once again thought of my early love for Ricki.
I blame Jenny Jones for the down fall of my favorite sector of Talk shows. Once she got herself sued for wrongful death, everyone has been too afraid to come near this essential niche. In her last seasons even Jenny calmed herself down, basically finding a new way to do makeovers every day, no longer were gay crushes revealed.
With Oprah retiring, and the nice gal quotient being filled by Ellen, I think someone needs to step up and bring back this once venerable institution. Take someone with a 'bad' girl or boy reputation and play up on that. Someone like former 90210 star Shannen Doherty. I can see her overseeing, not only her own talk show but taking trashy talk shows to a whole other level.With her blunt talk and familiarity with the audience she would be a smash hit right out of the gate.
One day I hope my dream of having a trashy, water cooler talk show back on air is realized. With so may hosts having banal chatter with djs or producers or whomever then doing celebrity interviews, isn't now the time to give us an alternative to the monotony?