Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Fist-Pump Gazette #9: "How the hell did I wake up and my hair's still done?"

If the recap of last week's show is to serve as any indication of what plotlines are to come (as it always has before), it appears that we're finally through with the Ronnie and Sammi drama. It's been replaced with Angelina drama, which has always proved dependable and entertaining. But now we get to focus less on how much her roommates hate her and more on how she plays her sometime boyfriend Jose for a fool by first leading him on, then refusing him birthday sex... then lying about it later, telling everyone in the house that they had smashed.

File this one under "It seems like a bad idea now, and will definitely be revealed as a bad idea later." But before Ang reaps the full consequences from her actions, it's time to explore some more relationship drama. We are presented with a sampling of one in every capacity: failed (Vinny), burgeoning (Pauly and Rocio), and advanced (Jenni and Tom, who arrived just for the week). And then of course there's Sam and Ron, who appear to have fully fallen back into their old habits. Who knows, maybe some people are capable of real change. And sometimes Miami's just the place to inspire it.

The only ones left out of the couples party are Mike (who's making the most of the situation) and Nicole (who only succeeds in getting drunk, interrupting Jenni and Tom, and ending up in Vinny's bed again). Read on to find out what scandal ensued!

Answer: Nothing, really. Vinny and Snooki didn't hook up again. Situation's plot to smash his girl in the bathroom of the club was foiled by security (but he did get her number after all, and we'll see how that works out next time). Overall, on the hanky-panky meter, I'd give this episode about a 3.

As for fights - probably about a 6. But that's only if you include the pre-commercial previews, where we saw Angelina slap Mike approximately 62 times. Turns out it only happens at literally the very last second of the episode, and we don't even get to see the aftermath until next time.

By the way, if you count the preview for next time, you almost have to bring the fight meter up to a 7, based on the promise of a full-on 'rasslin match between Nicole and Angelina. I tell you, these Jersey Shore kids must find it so gratifying to live in a culture where they have the total freedom to express themselves violently and receive not punishment, but positive reinforcement: the chance to indefinitely star in your own tv show and earn large sums of money your troubles. ...Even if it's only for a couple of weeks.

No, the leader of this week's show had to be the gross factor, which I'd say clocks in at about an 8 or a 9 - seeing as the climactic story of the episode involved disputes over 1) cleaning the filthy house and 2) the placement of a used tampon. Belonging to, guess who, Angelina. I mean, I've heard of potty-humor before, but this is ridiculous... you're not even supposed to put tampons in the actual potty, or so I hear. No, this graduates to some sick form of box-by-the-side-of-the-public-toilet-humor.

For me, television is about storytelling. With scripted shows (and movies), you start with a story - the script, the events that your show is re-telling - then you build around that. Reality shows tell stories too; sometimes even deeper ones than some scripted shows. Of course TV news is exclusively about storytelling (all a news anchor does is read "stories"). And, at bottom, part of me believes that people watch television to get told a good story. And in that way, the ratings reflect who are the better storytellers. (And the better story-strategists, but that's a whole different side of the industry.)

So then I start wondering to myself, what kind of people actually enjoy hearing stories about disgusting used tampons? There must be a lot of them, based on the ratings. And then I realize, I'm one of those people. I mean, I haven't missed an episode, right? And then I realize that I'm loving every minute of it, even the parts I claim to hate. I guess that's what makes good television...

Quote of the Day, Runner Up:
I thought I broke my vagina-bone, it was terrible.
Jersey Shore, Episode 9, Quote of the Day:
If you don't go to the gym, you don't look good. And if you don't tan, you're pale. And if you don't do laundry, you ain't got no clothes!