February 16, 2005

It's as Bad as Battlefield Earth!

AS A PUBLIC SERVICE to our readers and the Internet community at large, we have wasted most of an hour tonight watching "The Gastineau Girls," the new reality-television program from the E! Entertainment Network. Since the New York television critics all panned the show and no one in the provinces gave a damn, we figured SOMEONE had to watch it and record its badness for posterity.

Because it's bad. It's embarrassingly bad. It's so bad that spoilt milk gives off a better stench, so bad that a dinner of haggis and kippers would be more palatable, and so bad that four weeks on the Islip garbage barge might prove preferable. In fact, it's so bad, it's the reality-television equivalent of "Battlefield Earth."

We mean, good God. What the hell were the people at E! thinking when they gave the green-light for this train wreck? Not that E! is known for quality or brain-enriching programming, but this show was so astonishingly stupid that it should have given even those geniuses pause. Really.

Basically, this show follows the lives -- such as they are -- of Lisa Gastineau and her 22-year-old daughter, Brittny. Yes, Brittny. Anyway, prior to the show, Mrs Gastineau was best known for being married to Mark Gastineau, the former New York Jets football player, and for her role in Gastineau v. Gastineau, 151 Misc. 2d 813, 573 N.Y.S.2d 819, 821 (Supp. 1991). Prior to the show, Miss Gastineau was known for being ... well, Mrs Gastineau's daughter. Why exactly these two were considered suitable stars for a reality TV show is beyond us. There ain't that many Jets fans out there, after all.

We mean, you know it's bad when the show needs a lot of help from some poor actor forced to play the role of a supposed apartment doorman. We can assure readers this is a role so unfortunate that studios ought pay a luxury tax, to the Screen Actors Guild, for the sole purpose of keeping actors from having to do things like this. It'd just be the right thing to do, you know?

Anyway, back to the Gastineaus. Aside from serving as living proof for Juvenal's embittered declaration (intolerabilius nihil est quam femina dives), neither of these two ... do anything. We mean, it's pathetic. There's a bunch of complaining about all the daughter's crap in their shared apartment, which soon turns into more complaining that the daughter has wantonly violated Mom's lease agreement by harboring a rather large dog at home. Then, we get to watch even more complaining and whining, which is interspersed with silly attempts to find work and remarks about how wonderful it is to be pretty and have lots of gaudy jewelry. About 45 minutes into it, a pet psychologist had been summoned to deal with the dog's neuroses, and it was at this point that we reached for our Bad Television Sickness Companion.

In short, this is a television disaster not seen since the infamous Star Wars Holiday Special of 1978 -- you know, the one featuring the 15 minutes of un-subtitled Wookie conversation and the surprise appearance of Jefferson Starship. We strongly suggest that everyone concerned take steps to ensure "The Gastineau Girls" show meets a similar fate. Let it be quietly dropped from the airwaves, and never mentioned again.

Now, we realize that E! might not be amenable to this suggestion, coming as it does from a mere pajamahadeen. Therefore, we would ask the city, county and state of New York to take all measures necessary to shut down future production, or at the very least put out some kind of disclaimer telling the provinces that New Yorkers really aren't like this. Otherwise, the very heart and soul of New York -- to say nothing of its tourist trade -- could be in dire peril.

Posted by Benjamin Kepple at February 16, 2005 12:15 AM | TrackBack

I absolutely disagree! These girls have it all! I love them!

Posted by: Gastineau Fan at February 18, 2005 04:37 PM

If they have brains, a work ethic, etc., they're doing a rather bad job of showing this.

Posted by: Benjamin Kepple at February 21, 2005 09:16 PM