The Dishmaster

Entertainment News With a Side of Dish

Tuesday

25

April 2017

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COMMENTS

Diane Sawyer Interviews Caitlyn Jenner — Major #FAIL

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It might be unfair to call the new Diane Sawyer sit-down with Caitlyn Jenner an “interview,” given that it was more an informational voice-over than a Q&A. I’ve long insisted Caitlyn Jenner is not compelling without the Kardashians at her side, and I have also long insisted that Diane Sawyer is not a good interviewer. Gone are the days of Barbara Walters, where the purpose of her question was to actually gather information. Walters’ disarming nature allowed her to ask the hard-hitting, invasive questions that everyone wanted to know. In the interview below, Caitlyn Jenner likely talked for about ten minutes of the hour, and we did not learn much.

So what SHOULD she have asked? First, I want to know about Caitlyn’s feud with Kris Jenner and the current status of the relationship. I want to know why there is such a disconnect between what Kris says she knew about Caitlyn’s transition. I also want to know about Caitlyn’s sexual orientation and whether she was attracted to her ex-wives. In fact, Kim Kardashian asked Caitlyn this very question, as she also wanted to know. Additionally, does Caitlyn empathize with her family’s struggle to accept her transition? Can she understand the incredible shock of being married to a man for 23 years that then confesses this gender-identity struggle? And why did she abandon four children but then have the wherewithal to have two more and raise four step-children as her own? If it’s true that her gender struggle negatively impacted her ability to parent, then why was she able to effectively parent six children?

Caitlyn Jenner took the wrong path to her transitional process. Instead of getting to know the trans community which she conveniently was never interested in at all, she should have provided a stark lens into her physical transformation. I realize being a woman is more than one’s physical being, but never before has anyone of that magnitude provided such insight. She should have also discussed her sexual preference more heavily. But those are all the things she is vehemently opposed to exposing. Instead, she introduced herself to the world post-transition, as if we’re all just interested in Caitlyn’s boring personality. If the Kardashians can’t stand on their own with individual shows, Caitlyn Jenner certainly cannot.

Friday

21

April 2017

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COMMENTS

David Crosby at The Wiltern — A Full Review

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David Crosby doesn’t need any promotion from The Dishmaster. The man is a legend, and even without Graham Nash, Stephen Stills, and Neil Young, he can carry a concert. Crosby graced the stage of The Wiltern for an intimate evening with his most devoted fans, and he delivered the goods. The iconic singer/songwriter hit the road to promote his new solo album, Sky Trails, which is a follow-up to the recently released Lighthouse. Before Lighthouse, Crosby released Croz, which was his first solo album in decades. Given the close proximity of his solo records since the release of Croz, I can only guess he got the bug and he’s on a roll. He now performs with session guitarist Jeff Pevar, and his pianist son James Raymond (“CPR”). He attributes his creative re-awakening to the demise of Crosby, Still, Nash, and Young, insisting that quitting the group “unleashed a tidal wave of new music,” because the band became solely about playing their greatest hits. They had, “No new songs, no growth, and [they] didn’t like each other. There was no reason to be there other than the money, and that’s not enough.”

So what exactly happened to Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, and why don’t they like each other? It’s unclear, but the culprit seems to be Crosby himself, which isn’t surprising given that Crosby hilariously admitted during the show to being kicked out of The Byrds because “he was an asshole.” Here’s an elusive quote from Graham Nash about the matter:

I don’t like David Crosby right now. He’s been awful for me the last two years, just fucking awful. I’ve been there and saved his fucking ass for 45 years, and he treated me like shit. You can’t do that to me. You can do it for a day or so, until I think you’re going to come around. When it goes on longer, and I keep getting nasty emails from him, I’m done. Fuck you. David has ripped the heart out of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young.

Crosby apparently bad-mouthed Neil Young’s girlfriend, Daryl Hannah, calling her a “purely poisonous predator,” and though he later apologized, Young was not quick to accept, telling Howard Stern that a CSNY reunion is out of the question.

The irony here is that their mutual dislike likely propelled their creativity. Bands often enjoy songwriting with people that they like, but sometimes we are at our best in moments of discomfort. Though Crosby’s new venture, CPR, gives the audience those much-loved harmonies, his original music is missing the unforgettable melodies we’re so used to hearing from CSNY. But I appreciate an effort to produce original music throughout one’s life, and I agree with Crosby that playing a band’s greatest hits in perpetuity is painful. One thing is for sure — seeing David Crosby, in person, on stage, singing beautiful harmonies, is a true privilege.

Thursday

20

April 2017

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COMMENTS

The Kardashians Trash Caitlyn Jenner’s New Memoir

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There’s a reason Caitlyn Jenner’s career can’t survive without Kris. First, she’s not compelling. Second, the trans community has trouble embracing someone who never offered any support prior to her own self-interest. Third, she consistently trashes the Kardashians, without whom, she’d be bankrupt. Though I have many issues with Kris Jenner, there’s no denying her marketing/managing prowess, given that Bruce Jenner didn’t have a pot to piss in when they met. He rode the laurels of his gold medal, no new prospects in sight, and seemingly didn’t want any kind of day job. Jenner booked him as a motivational speaker, made workout videos, etc, and that dedication goes completely unacknowledged. Furthermore, maybe it’s true that Kris was in denial about Caitlyn’s transition, but so what? Lots of people ignore red flags and bury their head in the sand. Can she really be blamed for having trouble with her husband’s transition? Divorce is hard enough, but now her ex-husband has become a woman? There’s a big distinction between someone explaining their gender identity issues and someone actually becoming a different gender. It’s shocking, and though I’m sure her family completely supports the trans community, there’s zero empathy from Caitlyn about it. Becoming a woman isn’t just about what’s on the outside, so you’d think empathy would be far easier for Caitlyn than it appears.
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Wednesday

19

April 2017

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COMMENTS

Artist on the Rise: Caro Pierotto

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Los Angeles has many hidden gems, and one of those gems is SoFar Sounds, an underground way to uncover soon-to-be-discovered musicians. The secret society of music enthusiasts keeps their performers hidden until arrival, which allows for a completely earnest, genuine experience. It also eliminates the bad habits of our inhabitants, which involves only showing up for the main act at the expense of their opener. The process brought me Caro Pierotto, who sings in both Portuguese and English (I prefer the former). Listen below.

Monday

17

April 2017

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COMMENTS

The ‘Girls’ Series Finale — A Full Review

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I remember my twenties as a narcissistic blur that badly represented the dreams of my teens. It entailed bad sex, bad relationships, and even worse jobs that kept me on the constant fringe of being fired. ‘Girls’ quietly captured those common themes with its appropriately underwhelming last season. Gone is the girl who is rescued, the tearful group dinner, and the sudden self-awareness. Instead, things got real. Friendships were fractured, Hannah Horvath had a parental meltdown, and Marnie traded her personal happiness for once.

The penultimate episode of ‘Girls’ was more of an ending than the last, which was more of a beginning for Hannah’s new journey as a mother. Clues suggest that she’ll struggle, as most new mothers do, and though her tight circle of friends is nowhere to be found, that’s okay, since most of us lose contact with the besties of which we vow die-hard loyalty.

When ‘Girls’ first began, I didn’t get it. I wanted the pretty filters, Manolo Blahniks the characters curiously can’t afford, and the aspirational New York life that never really exists for anyone. When Lena Dunham aired her gratuitous nudity for the world to see, I attacked her, an action of which I’m now ashamed. She had a master plan, and I was too one dimensional to spot her depth. She’s a body warrior, and she changed the game. We’re used to the sexualized nudity of rock-hard bodies, and she instead offered the reality of prancing around one’s apartment naked for no good reason. When others, like myself, questioned her, she turned up the dial, so as to say, “It’s my party and I’ll prance around naked if I want to.” She also wasn’t going to sensationalize the reality of her youth, give the girl a standard love story, or portray life as easy. Because life isn’t easy . . . for anyone — money or not.

Goodbye, ‘Girls’. It was certainly fun while it lasted.

Tuesday

11

April 2017

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COMMENTS

Louis C.K. Calls Out Jimmy Fallon’s Dumb Question

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I’ve long accused Jimmy Fallon of being an inauthentic interviewer/kiss-ass, and apparently — I’m in good company. Louis C.K. appeared on his show to promote his new Netflix special, and he called out Fallon for saying something “dumb” during the interview. While riffing on his love for naps, Fallon asked Louis if he “Likes naps more than sleep.” Fallon clearly didn’t get that he was being laughed at, not with, and he would not relent on the exchange. Watch below.

Louis was once lauded for selling his stand-up specials directly to his fans for $5 each, with an estimated gain of $200,000 for the star. But even the everyman couldn’t resist the Netflix beast, and though his deal is not revealed, The Daily Beast reports that:

Chris Rock recently secured $40 million for two new specials with the company, Dave Chappelle got $60 million for three specials — two of which were already in the can — and Jerry Seinfeld reportedly took in $100 million total for a deal that includes two new specials as well as 24 new episodes of his web series Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.

The new Netflix model, while good for fans, can be tough for comedians. Their specials are taped too long before they air, which means the material can feel dated. Something tells me Netflix will figure this out, though. It’s an easy fix.

Wednesday

5

April 2017

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COMMENTS

Bill O’Reilly Sexual Harassment Claims: A Complete Timeline

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In just two years, Bill O’Reilly has generated nearly half a billion dollars in advertising revenue for Fox News. You can therefore imagine that the network would balk at the prospect of dethroning the boisterous blowhard, even with consistent complaints of sexual harassment. And it’s also worth noting that he’s denied it, but with a new article in the New York Times and subsequent coverage, what exactly happened? To avoid distraction, I’m breaking it down for ease-of-read, in timeline form.

  • 2004: Andrea Mackris filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against O’Reilly. She said he had told her to buy a vibrator, called her at times when it sounded as if he was masturbating and described his sexual fantasies. He was married at the time. She alleges he threatened her, saying he would make any woman who complained about his behavior “pay so dearly that she’ll wish she’d never been born.” She receives a settlement for $9 million. She never worked in television again.
  • 2013: Wendy Walsh, the former guest on Mr. O’Reilly’s show, met O’Reilly for dinner at the Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles. According to Walsh, during the dinner he promised to make her a network contributor. After dinner, he invited her to his hotel suite. She declined. He then became hostile and insulted her. Though she appeared on the network for months following the incident, she was never made a contributor. Fox says she was removed because her segments were not successful.
  • July, 2016: Gretchen Carlson sued Roger Ailes, the Chairman and CEO of Fox News and the Fox Television Stations Group. She claimed that when she rejected his sexual advances, he retaliated by reducing her salary, cutting her on-air appearances and declining to renew her contract. At the time, Ailes said her suit was a retaliatory response to not having her contract renewed.
  • July, 2016: Bill O’Reilly defends Roger Ailes, saying, “I stand behind Roger 100 percent,” adding that “in this country, every famous, powerful or wealthy person is a target. You’re a target, I’m a target. Anytime, somebody could come out and sue us, attack us, go to the press or anything like that.”
  • August 2016: Fox News host named Andrea Tantaros said Mr. O’Reilly sexually harassed her in a lawsuit she filed against the network and Roger Ailes. Fox News offered to pay her a seven-figure sum to renounce her claims (she declined). She alleges that he asked her to stay with him on Long Island and said he could ‘see [her] as a wild girl.” The lawsuit is still ongoing, and Fox News said she was fired for another unrelated reason.
  • November, 2016: Fox News host Megyn Kelly releases a memoir that corroborates Gretchen Carlson’s claims, alleging that Ailes tried to kiss her and made sexually-charged comments. Kelly had publicly complimented Ailes, which was quickly brought to light in response to her claims.
  • March, 2017: An investigation into claims of sexual harassment against Roger Ailes unveils that the CFO of Fox News was offered immunity by prosecutors in exchange for information about alleged hidden payouts to Ailes’ accusers.
  • July, 2017: Roger Ailes steps down. He receives a $40 million payout as part of his exit agreement. At the time, Fox News issues a statement saying they did not tolerate behavior that “disrespects women or contributes to an uncomfortable work environment.”
  • 2017 (Post Ailes Ouster): Fox News anchor (from 2000-2008) Laurie Dhue went to the company to outline her harassment claims against Mr. O’Reilly and Mr. Ailes. They settled for $1 million.
  • March 2017: Two black women sue Fox News in State Supreme Court in the Bronx alleging “top-down racial harassment” in the Fox News payroll department, citing racially-charged comments and “severe and pervasive discrimination and harassment.”
  • September, 2017: 21st Century Fox reached a settlement worth $1.6 million with Juliet Huddy. She made regular appearances on O’Reilly’s show, and he allegedly had influence over her airtime. She says that in 2011, he made inappropriate phone calls to her and tried to kiss her. When she rejected him, her career suffered.
  • Fox News reacts to the NYT investigation: “21st Century Fox takes matters of workplace behavior very seriously. Notwithstanding the fact that no current or former Fox News employee ever took advantage of the 21st Century Fox hotline to raise a concern about Bill O’Reilly, even anonymously, we have looked into these matters over the last few months and discussed them with Mr. O’Reilly. While he denies the merits of these claims, Mr. O’Reilly has resolved those he regarded as his personal responsibility. Mr. O’Reilly is fully committed to supporting our efforts to improve the environment for all our employees at Fox News.”
  • Advertisers flee: In response to the NYT investigation, many advertisers have pulled or redirected their ads. Some of those advertisers include, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Lexus, Hyundai, Mitsubishi, GlaxoSmithKline, Bayer, Sanofi Consumer Care, Allstate, Esurance, T. Rowe Price, Credit Karma, Pacific Life; Jenny Craig, Advil, H&R Block, Orkin, Untuckit, Ancestry.com, Constant Contact, Ainsworth Pet Nutrition, Coldwell Banker, Amica mutual insurance company, Touchnote, Invisalign, TrueCar, ODFL freight line; and LegalZoom.

There’s a lot of appropriate outrage about Bill O’Reilly’s behavior and the behavior of Fox News. The first reason is obvious. Women should feel safe in the workplace. Sexual propositions from men in power are difficult to decline, especially when they’re accompanied by threats. It’s also pathetic. Bill O’Reilly is a big baby. He’s punishing women for their disinterest, much like a high school bully. Second, Fox News is sending a message that it values money over morals, and unfortunately, they won’t dethrone their bully until his actions dent their bottom line. The good news is that if a social media firestorm forces advertisers to pull out, which in turn leads to O’Reilly’s ouster, then that’s a ground-up approach to ethics, and I’m all for it. The third, more meta point is this: O’Reilly’s soapbox is all about the moral high-ground. Apparently, that high-ground doesn’t apply to harassing his colleagues.

Tuesday

4

April 2017

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COMMENTS

Artist to Watch: Betty Who

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Who is Betty Who, and how did she enter my radar? Through a facebook feed, of course, dominated by a very hairy gay man with good taste.Born Jessica Anne Newham, she’s an Australian singer-songwriter who released her second album, The Valley, on March 24 via RCA Records. Though she’s not moving mountains, the tunes are pop-driven and well-produced. She’s got a little Robyn in her, and that’s a good thing. Listen below.

Sunday

2

April 2017

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COMMENTS

HBO’s Big Little Lies Finale — Full Review (No Spoilers)

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big-little-lies

While laying beside her husband and William Morris big-wig agent Jim Toth, Reese Witherspoon complained about the lack of substantial roles for women in Hollywood, and her husband pushed her to make a change. He reminded her that she loves to read, and she has a production company, and she’s perfectly capable of carving her own path. And that she did. What began with Wild, soon became Gone Girl and now . . . Big Little Lies — her best yet.

Big Little Lies proves something very powerful. Women are perfectly capable of leading the pack, and they can do it sans testosterone. In fact, though the men in the story have a minor contribution, they are mere pawns for their female players. Those players include, Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern, Shailene Woodley, and Zoe Saldana. Nicole plays Celeste, a victim of abuse at the hands of her husband, with whom she can’t seem to leave. Of all the performances, hers is by far the most nuanced, proving once again why Kidman deserves endless praise and also why movie actors should flee to television. Cinema isn’t the same, and this is the role of a lifetime. Reese Witherspoon plays Madeline, an all-too-perfect type A divorcee whose new husband found happiness with her zen-like opposite, and even a sweet new spouse and child of her own can’t contain the scorn. Laura Dern is at her best as Renata. Though Dern has less scenes, she steals them. Her mamma-bear insanity is deliciously alarming. Shailene plays Jane, and I can only imagine that it’s a play on her plain Jane performance. While her dull demeanor was likely intentional, I couldn’t help but think she was punching above her weight beside these powerhouses. Zoe Saldana was also understated as Bonnie, but unlike Shailene, she played well inside her lane.

With a beautiful backdrop of Monterey, captivating characters, and a murder mystery, we’ve got a deeply addictive masterpiece. This could have easily veered into Bad Moms territory and made us say #WhitePeopleProblems, but instead–we identify with these deeply flawed women whose quest for perfection is so penetrable. With each episode, we learn more about their hidden lives, and since I’d like you to watch it, I’ll withhold more details, except to say — that was one hell of a finale.

Sunday

2

April 2017

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COMMENTS

Tabloid Gossip: Your Week of News

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Lamar Odom came clean about cheating on Khloe KardashianContact Music

Kim Kardashian wants another baby. E! Online

Mary J. Blige opened up about the end of her marriage. BET

Jared Pedalecki and his wife welcomed a daughter. Popsugar

David Arquette had another baby. Us Magazine

Rob Kardashian and Blac Chyna are back together . . . again. Bossip

Scarlett Johansson’s divorce just got messy. Newser

Don’t call Candace Cameron Bure a homophobe. Wet Paint

Naya Rivera and David Spade are dating. Entertainment Tonight

Alec Baldwin discussed his drug abuse. Too Fab

ARod and JLO are twinning. Wonderwall

Lauren Conrad showcased her baby bump. MSNBC

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