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All Episodes Talk: Talk or Die

A place to discuss particular episodes, arcs and moments from the show's run. Please remember this isn't a complete catch-all topic -- check out the forum for character topics and other places for show-related talk.

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I didn't mind it?

 

I'm not sure I'd watch if it was on every night but imma leave it on my DVR for now. Each episode will succeed or fail according to the quality of guests, I'm thinking. The best part for me was, as usual, Craig's opening remarks/monologue.

Edited by lordonia.
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Was able to catch S01Ep1 and S01Ep2 last night. I think this show plays to Craig's strengths for extemporaneous dialogue with guests, especially guests like Jimmy Kimmel and Chris Hardwick who have a quick wit. Not sure if I'm 100% behind the "game-show" like components where they eliminate "political blunders" or "bad medical advice" to get to the "winner" of the show. Seems like a flimsy premise to just get Craig talking about the topic.

Since it's only a weekly show, will probably keep it on my DVR recording schedule for the time being.

Edited by SedruolZenitram.
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I don't know what I was expecting, exactly, but this wasn't it. It wasn't super funny and it wasn't really educational, either. I guess I was hoping for something like Drunk History, which would find a creative way to present history, or maybe that Craig would use his wild-eyed enthusiasm and real or faux naivete as an inroad to presenting the stories, possibly things he didn't know about American history, or things about world history that Americans don't know.

 

It's not terrible, but it's way less deep or serious or funny than I'd hoped. It also looks like it was thrown together without much thought-- for instance how Anthony Weiner wasn't included in the political blunders, and lobotomy being orders of magnitude more extreme than some of the other options on the medical blunders, and how the panel was able to point all those things out really quickly.

 

I may give it a few more tries to see how it develops, because I do think Craig can be funny and thoughtful and interesting. So it could get better. He did say, during an interview with Colbert, that he thought the show focused too much on recent rather than far historical events. I think if they had, for instance, chosen political blunders of the 1800s, it might have been way more funny and interesting than choosing things that happened all in the past few years and were already joked to death.

Edited by possibilities.
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I think the second episode was quite a bit better than the first episode.  The political blunder choices were rather anemic. What's the criteria? Did they want true blunders or silly blunders? What about the "Mission Accomplished" banner?  Or Aaron Burr assassinating Hamilton?  That wasn't silly but it ruined his political career. 

 

I do think the medical advice episode was better because at least all of those felt like terrible ideas.  It also wasn't as biased towards the very very recent because it takes a while before medical recommendations that are en vogue get exposed as ineffective. 

 

My favorite part of both shows were the experts.  In fact, I think the show should be two experts and one funny person.  And maybe it could be more interactive in future tapings (if there are more) by being open to suggestions from the Twitterverse.

 

It was interesting enough for me to keep watching.  And since this is new, it may take a while to come together.

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Courtney Cox seemed so uncomfortable on the Frenemies panel. Is she always like that? It looked like she was feeling intimidated by the other panelists?

 

Craig commenting on how he doesn't even like the concept of frenemies in the first place kind of convinced me that the show really isn't being given much thought, like maybe there's a few people putting it together and he just shows up to host, without having editorial input. I hope they get that worked out, because even a low budget show has to refrain from exposing it's sloppiness to the degree that the host feels obligated to dis the premise of an episode on camera in a special segment.

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I like the concept of the show and I like Craig, but I think there's still room to improve. Courtney Cox, for me, was weak. She didn't contribute a ton. Michael Ian Black definitely should come back more often. I was a bit lost in their logic of picking, though, because they ruled out Tesla and Edison for being straight up enemies and to the best of my knowledge, Jobs and Gates were never friends, just rivals. I thought they were missing Mozart and Salieri as well as, if they wanted to go more macro, Army/Navy.

 

Bottom line, I'm definitely willing to give this show a chance.

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I'm thinking 3 panelists are too many for the available time. One actual topic expert and one "funny" celeb would work better. Cox inadvertently highlighted that.

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Courtney Cox seemed so uncomfortable on the Frenemies panel. Is she always like that? It looked like she was feeling intimidated by the other panelists?

I was laughing my ass off when Dan Soder (unintentionally I think) got her on the ropes concerning Jay Leno vs. David Letterman. That's when she squirmed EXTRA hard, and it was oddly entertaining to watch her try and get out of that one without offending anyone.

In the end with her claiming that "the Letterman show was more fun to do but Leno was nicer"--I smirked and added a big "hah!" to the careful stepping she had to do there--especially since the panel had already pretty much equated Leno-viewing to mindless pap.

Michael Ian Black definitely should come back more often.

Michael Ian Black should always be on everything.

Craig commenting on how he doesn't even like the concept of frenemies in the first place kind of convinced me that the show really isn't being given much thought, like maybe there's a few people putting it together and he just shows up to host, without having editorial input. I hope they get that worked out, because even a low budget show has to refrain from exposing it's sloppiness to the degree that the host feels obligated to dis the premise of an episode on camera in a special segment.

I didn't necessarily get that (or even if it's true care that much). I mean sometimes it's GOOD to work with a topic you're a little uncomfortable with/unsure of. The comedy potential is often very different from the analytic/logical one too (as was the case here). Cutting on the IDEA of frenemies was an inherently comedic response--even if I suppose Craig could have been even more cutting on that if he'd really applied himself.
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Courtney Cox seemed so uncomfortable on the Frenemies panel. Is she always like that? It looked like she was feeling intimidated by the other panelists?

 

Craig commenting on how he doesn't even like the concept of frenemies in the first place kind of convinced me that the show really isn't being given much thought, like maybe there's a few people putting it together and he just shows up to host, without having editorial input. I hope they get that worked out, because even a low budget show has to refrain from exposing it's sloppiness to the degree that the host feels obligated to dis the premise of an episode on camera in a special segment.

 

What struck me is that they don't completely define elements in one sense and yet take an incredibly restrictive take in another.  While I understand the original definition of frenemy, that is not really how it is used today.  At least as I understand it.  To me, today, frenemy is the term applied to people who are bound socially but at the root have a conflicting personality or issue that never quite is resolved and yet feels restricted somewhat by social niceties.  Its people who could do without each other but are never quite ready to make the leap and dissolve ties.  So really to me, Adams and Jefferson were the only ones that qualify in the first place because their rivalry and issues had started long before the election.  And likely would have always rubbed against each other if the election running against each other had never happened.   I guess thinking politically, Churchill and DeGaulle.  Or presently, depending on how things go, President Obama and Hillary Clinton. 

 

What I found ironic, hugely so, was the fact that Cox was on the panel and I think the fact she describes how they all stood together on Friends as a cast and then lets slip how she hasn't seen Schwimmer in ten years might just indicate that she and the others in some way might be the perfect example of a frenemy.  I know she and Anniston are tight but there are clearly less than deep abiding relationships among some of them.  Interviews with Kudrow and LeBlanc seems to support the idea that the timing of their parting was maybe none too soon for some of them.

 

Same way with the campaign one.  It was odd to me that they latched on to Dukakis as the biggest problem being his image that essentially was there before the campaign started.  Mainly his looks.  The tank image was damning.  But there was also a huge false perception campaign run in terms of the whole Willy Horton ads.  And Sarah Pailn was a huge mistake, but it was taken deliberately.  Add in that McCain showed several huge flaws in his refusal to assess and identify.  His approach to the financial crises was a huge blunder.  His assessment to Iraq was another at a time when the nation had already demanded in the polls in 2006 they wanted out; fast and as painless as possible.   Sarah Palin cost him many votes.  But McCain's appeal to many going in to 2008 was the perception that he was not in the same lockstep dogmatic mold as the Republican Party.  And yet despite his moderate maverick appeal prior to that, we saw him at Liberty doing exactly what so many moderate swing voters were against.  I found this latest to be the weakest in many ways.  Especially since it put in Gore which ignored the voter fraud issue no matter which side you were on.  It ignored Bush I's re-election after his no taxes bit.  Dole's attempt to unseat Clinton which might be the shift in the Republican party which has its legacy today with Drumpf. 

 

And even Romney's campaign being a failure because he was up against Obama skirts the fact that President Obama had huge approval problems going into the election that the right candidate might have done better to capitalize on. 

 

I do think Romney deserved to be in the top six but more because of the fact that his campaign was trying to convince the majority of the people that someone from the nation's tiniest minority ; that of great wealth and privilege, was enough of a "man of the people".  With Mitt Romney.  He and his wife never truly connected and seemed to go out of their way to do otherwise.  Instead showing that they were essentially snobs who at best felt patronizingly paternal towards the uncouth masses.

 

And seriously, where was Ross Perot? 

 

I wonder how much they choose the six they do in part so the panel has an ease and hopefully a familiarity with them as well as being easy to do some research to provide a cogent argument for or against come time to film.

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What I found ironic, hugely so, was the fact that Cox was on the panel and I think the fact she describes how they all stood together on Friends as a cast and then lets slip how she hasn't seen Schwimmer in ten years might just indicate that she and the others in some way might be the perfect example of a frenemy.  I know she and Anniston are tight but there are clearly less than deep abiding relationships among some of them.  Interviews with Kudrow and LeBlanc seems to support the idea that the timing of their parting was maybe none too soon for some of them.

I didn't read irony, because I think that was a (admittedly very awkward) joke--not a slip.

 

I don't think they socialize. And unlike several of the others, I don't think she's worked with him again. But Hollywood is a small place. It's really super-unlikely they've never been at the same party, restaurant, awards show, etc. in a whole decade.  Never all of the cast at the same time, but ALL of them have bumped into each other in those circumstances one by one over the years.

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There are lots of people I've liked perfectly fine as "work friends" (and would absolutely stick together with them in a mutually beneficial alliance like a union or other wage negotiation) but not enough to seek out specifically to socialize unrelated to work. I wouldn't call them "frenemies" at all. I think of "frenemies" as people I can't stand but deal with and maintain a surface functional politeness because openly opposing each other would make things worse.

 

The show is not improving at all for me, from episode to episode. I'm actually having a hard time convincing myself to keep setting aside the time to watch it. I do really like Ferguson, and some of his guest panelists, and I was really hoping I'd like the show, but it's just not doing it for me so far.

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There are lots of people I've liked perfectly fine as "work friends" (and would absolutely stick together with them in a mutually beneficial alliance like a union or other wage negotiation) but not enough to seek out specifically to socialize unrelated to work. I wouldn't call them "frenemies" at all. I think of "frenemies" as people I can't stand but deal with and maintain a surface functional politeness because openly opposing each other would make things worse.

 

The show is not improving at all for me, from episode to episode. I'm actually having a hard time convincing myself to keep setting aside the time to watch it. I do really like Ferguson, and some of his guest panelists, and I was really hoping I'd like the show, but it's just not doing it for me so far.

 

But to me that misses the "friend" part of Frenemy.  I know plenty of people and work and relate with them socially just as you explain, but it is totally forced on me.  I don't have an aspect that simply takes them a notch above "just people I have to deal with who annoy me".  I guess I just see it entirely different as I think there has to be some sort of component that takes it beyond simply being forced by circumstances.  Like a large movie night group that includes someone who I would normally choice not to engage with.  But I like the group.  I like the person's friends.  So I make the choice and engage with the person and we make nice for the people around us and even if we meet at Whole Foods, say, on our own we will make nice and give an effort to a chat.  We make the social courtesies just a bit beyond what we really have to.  And there have been times when this person and I have have gone even more out of the way to do something you would an actual friend and I do it but not with maybe the same feeling I would a friend. 

 

I stick fully by my assertion of the irony of a group of people who seem unable to shatter the myth that they were as friendly off the show as they were portrayed on.  Again.  Kudrow and LeBlanc have come the closest with hysterical dry wit and a hint of ever so slightly scathing remove.   Loads of irony with that mask of Cox sitting right there looking awkward. I don't think she wanted to delve into any possible Friends parallels at all.   And Cox also provided a cruel setup since a mean comic might have asked her if she and her plastic surgeon counted as frenemies.

 

I'm a hold out as I find Michael Ian Black slightly amusing and only in itty bitty doses.  His interpretation seemed off to the show's.  I thought the show was initially looking for the couple who were history's biggest frenemies not the biggest frenemies in all history included hundreds of years from now (i.e. not history). 

 

i think the show just lacks a certain something.  It ends up being to dry in some ways and the expert can simply take over and the rest give in to whatever that person says ignoring that it seems just a few shows in the expert has a bias of some sort. 

 

Being on commercial tv it takes less than twenty minutes out of day when I watch so it makes for something decent while I pay my bills or iron a shirt.  Otherwise I can see myself getting too busy and forgetting it is on and simply not finding it worth the bother to go back and watch.  A few bad panels or a line up of people I actively dislike and I can the show falling to the wayside real fast.

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There are lots of people I've liked perfectly fine as "work friends" (and would absolutely stick together with them in a mutually beneficial alliance like a union or other wage negotiation) but not enough to seek out specifically to socialize unrelated to work. I wouldn't call them "frenemies" at all. I think of "frenemies" as people I can't stand but deal with and maintain a surface functional politeness because openly opposing each other would make things worse.exactly.

That's how I see it too.  Frenemies, to me, usually means "better together even though there's friction."  Or "rivals with respect."  Not seeing each other for ten years after a professional relationship ends does not indicate frenemies to me, especially since Courtney Cox has been based in Hollywood and David Schwimmer moved on to directing based in NYC and England. (And maybe back to his Chicago theater group as well.) 

 

Politics is hotbead of frenemies.  Where you can tear your rival apart one day and endrose him and stand behind him in support during a rally only a few days later with the hope of parlaying that support into a job.  I also think a duo like Simon & Garfunkel are a better example of frenemies than Lennon & McCartney.  Lennon & McCartney split.  Simon & Garfunkel split, then reunited, then split again and then reunited.

 

And Sarah Pailn was a huge mistake, but it was taken deliberately.  Add in that McCain showed several huge flaws in his refusal to assess and identify.  His approach to the financial crises was a huge blunder.  Especially since it put in Gore which ignored the voter fraud issue no matter which side you were on.  It ignored Bush I's re-election after his no taxes bit. 

 

And even Romney's campaign being a failure because he was up against Obama skirts the fact that President Obama had huge approval problems going into the election that the right candidate might have done better to capitalize on.

Right. I do think this is where not having a definition is tough.  Because when we talked "doomed campaigns" are we talking campaign suffering from blunders or suffering from outside forces?

 

With McCain, it was doomed because what made him appealing to the general electorate ("maverick") doomed him with primary voters in 2000 which is why chose to run a different campaign in 2008.  But that was a choice.  As was the selection of Sarah Palin.  So perhaps these were just blunders?  But the financial crisis?  That's what doomed him for good and that was out of his control.  I don't think it was just his reaction to it, although that didn't help, but the situation overall.

 

Take Al Gore.  He did win the popular vote.  He could have done some things better, like use Bill Clinton, but he still did win.  So does that make his campaign less doomed because he did get more votes?  Or is more doomed because the decisive state's governor was his opponent's brother and the supreme court had a right tilt? Or because Nader was in the race?

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Oy, I didn't even make it past the first commercial of the Tyrants ep. All the panelists were just talking over each other, plus the topic was more than a little discomforting to me to begin with. La, la, millions dead, who's worst.

 

Sorry, Craig. I wanted to hang in because I like your comedy, and this may have sounded like a good idea on paper, but the execution has been terrible.

Edited by lordonia.
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It settled down after the first commercial in the Tyrants ep. But I agree that the show hasn't yet reached the potential that I imagined when I heard about the concept of the show. Still love Craig and his brilliance (comedically and intellectually), but the show isn't quite clicking right now.

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The problem is it pretends to history but doesn't practice it in the tyrant bit.  Keeping Mary I because she was the only woman was stupid.  And she was rather a stupid pick to me.  Catherine de Medici was a huge part of the St. Bartholomew massacre that spread throughout France and took thousands of lives.  And they never touched on the fact that while numbers are oddly disparate depending on the source. Elizabeth I did her fair share of faith killing.  The Russian Empresses, both the Catherines, Elizabeth and Anna all had their fair share.  

 

I think there is probably a line so fine it almost doesn't exist between Stalin and Hitler.  But one of the things that always bothers me is that Hitler is given such flat numbers.  Stalin might have done the deed, but many of the millions that lie at Stalin's door were made available thanks to Hitler.  The rippling effect of death that Hitler caused throughout the world is staggering.  Some of Japan's rampages through humanity would not have been possible in the Pacific where Britain held power had Germany not already declared war.  The number of dead in Europe well after the official end of the war is also much huger than I think this panel even considered.

 

Also.  What is this Caesar Craig was talking about?  Julius and Augustus didn't persecute the Jews and Christians didn't exist yet.  In fact the Julio-Claudians were tame compared to what came after in terms of religious persecution though as tyrants the family did produce some appallingly unique ones.  But take a look at Cleopatra VII's ancestors, particularly the female members.  Her couple-of-times great-aunts who went through the Seleucids and each other would make George R. R. Martin unable to sleep at night.  Cleopatra VII was the most famous but I would argue she was not as outrageous as some of the others before her.

 

I would have liked to see them do Hitler with Stalin in the mix because I think that is an interesting argument.  Pol Pot deserved to be in the mix.  But not sure about Genghis Khan because it seems they were attributing all the deaths at the hands of the Mongols to him which might be a bit off since they were cutting a swathe through the Eurasian Plain well after he died.   Also contrary to myth the Mongols didn't just destroy cities out of hand.  Not that it was a good thing but he did give them a chance to surrender willingly and often only destroyed those who killed his own emissaries or tried to change sides and go against him after swearing loyalty.

 

This was a bad panel overall.  I'm not sure how Kim Jong Il gets thrown out so fast either. 

 

Dany Levy and Julie Bowen were a horrible combination since they both seemed to come in determined to get in what they thought were their best quips and Craig seemed to decide to match them and veracity was thrown out the window pretty fast.

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I agree with you tenativelyyours.  And I was also wondering why Mary I was selected over Catherine Medici or

Catherine the Great. I wondered if Ivan the Terrible should have made the list. I also thought Caeser was an odd

mention considering the more crazier Caesers down that came after him. I want to keep watching because

I like the idea of debating the different topics and I'm trying to get my history fix from somewhere. But I wish it was

better. I love Craig.  

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I don't get the distress over who was kept over who. The framework of the show is just to deliver bits of history and much bigger bits of comedy about these people. The "contest" and who gets kept, dropped or who even eventually "wins" in kind of meaningless.

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I forgot about how Craig almost seemed to infer that the wall in China was built to keep Genghis out.  Or maybe that was meant as a joke?  If so it wasn't very funny for me.  Too bad.  Because if it wasn't a joke.  Well completely.  It was another simple piece of misinformation this episode seemed to thrive on.  I mean unless Craig believes there was such foresight involved and in 200 BCE they knew Genghis was coming more than a thousand years later. 

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I forgot about how Craig almost seemed to infer that the wall in China was built to keep Genghis out.  Or maybe that was meant as a joke?  If so it wasn't very funny for me.  Too bad.  Because if it wasn't a joke.  Well completely.  It was another simple piece of misinformation this episode seemed to thrive on.  I mean unless Craig believes there was such foresight involved and in 200 BCE they knew Genghis was coming more than a thousand years later. 

It's a typical Craig kind of joke actually--comedic transference.  It's a Donald Trump joke.

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I get that they made jokes about it but the fact that Scientology wasnt included in the cult show was bullshit.

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I get that they made jokes about it but the fact that Scientology wasnt included in the cult show was bullshit.

Guess he was actually afraid of their lawyers.

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The show on cults was my favorite of the ones I've seen so far. The expert was knowledgeable and well spoken and the entertainment guests were as well. I have a deep and abiding love for Craig and am just  happy to have him back on my teevee so I'll watch regardless just to see him.

 

I thought the jokes about Scientology were funny. I noticed they left out the Waco cult and wondered why. Children dying is never funny but they did include the Jamestown cult. Is it because Waco was closer in time as well as geography? I dunno.  

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Michael Ian Black should always be on everything.

Yes! I've been a fan of him since "The State" on MTV.

 

I like Craig, so I've been DVRing the episodes.  Some are better than others.  I definitely enjoy the historical episodes more.  I do agree that they should limit the comedian/celebrity to 1 person. 

 

Last night's episode:  obviously the internet/personal computer are very important, but I don't like how some folks were disrespecting the microwave.  I love my microwave and can't imagine life among it.  For those of us who are not cooks/don't enjoy cooking, the microwave is awesome and such a time saver.

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Last night's episode:  obviously the internet/personal computer are very important, but I don't like how some folks were disrespecting the microwave.  I love my microwave and can't imagine life among it.  For those of us who are not cooks/don't enjoy cooking, the microwave is awesome and such a time saver.

Cooks use microwaves too, even if they won't always admit it. There are things it inarguably does better, like melt cheese on something, or re-warm old donuts or cookies (where you WANT the warming to happen from the inside out) or does almost as well, with far less investment, like steam vegetables or cook rice (assuming you don't have a rice cooker around, which is actually the least effort/best result, but a microwave is certainly as good as boiling rice in a pot).  What you can't usually do in a microwave is cause a Maillard reaction (the chemical change when you brown things), so that's why a lot of things inherently suck out of them---about the closest you can come is with those silvery sleeve things you put underneath microwave pizzas.

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I've watched most of the episodes and have much the same opinion as everyone here - it's not a perfect show, but the concept is a good one and there's room for improvement.  Craig is also whip-smart, incredibly charming, and was born to host a show like this.  

 

I watched this video of Craig promoting the show on Larry King's show and was immediately encouraged about the future of the show.  It's a little long, but worth the watch.  Craig seems very aware of the weak spots in the show at the moment and has some good ideas on where he'd like to take it.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sW1Y3q3zm5I

 

Also, I'm not much of a country music fan, but I loved the beejzus out of Trace Adkins.  His chill personality and dry humor played well off of Craig.

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I've given up. Maybe I'll check it out again if it stays on air a while, but for now, I'm just not liking the show enough to keep watching.

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The problems people seem to have with it are procedural I think. I don't feel that caught up in it having to be that perfectly educational, so I'm okay with it being kind of loosey-goosey. Craig himself is funnier more often than not on it, so I'm sticking.

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The problem I have with it is that it's boring to me. I don't find it funny or interesting on any level. I find myself watching the clock hoping it will be over soon, or getting restless and wanting to go do something else. I kept hoping it was just a bad start, and maybe it is, but despite that I like Craig and sometimes like some of his guests, they've yet to say anything that made me laugh or which gave me fuel for thought. I don't think it's necessarily the format, I just think it's not for me.

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The fact that they had Viagra and not the birth control pill was absolutely infuriating, I think I am giving up the show. I get they can't choose a perfect list but each episode there is some choice like that is ludicrious.

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The fact that they had Viagra and not the birth control pill was absolutely infuriating, I think I am giving up the show. I get they can't choose a perfect list but each episode there is some choice like that is ludicrious.

You're taking the lists far too seriously though. The lists just serve to poke at some history a bit in a light manner and toss out some jokes. The "process" of picking a winner isn't supposed to have any real weight or integrity to it. 

 

But I guess I agree--if conceptually the idea of the lists being throw away mechanisms to engage in banter isn't something you can swallow, then I doubt the show is ever going to work for you.

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You're taking the lists far too seriously though. The lists just serve to poke at some history a bit in a light manner and toss out some jokes. The "process" of picking a winner isn't supposed to have any real weight or integrity to it. 

 

But I guess I agree--if conceptually the idea of the lists being throw away mechanisms to engage in banter isn't something you can swallow, then I doubt the show is ever going to work for you.

I have no problem with lists being used to engage in banter be it funny, informational or things I disagree with I just think that the items they choose for the lists are always wanting and that leads to the problem I have with the show and the choices it makes. I mean it's clear they give all of the panelists talking points and information about all of the choices on the list so I think critiquing the list is a valid critique of the show.

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Catherine de Medici vs. Catherine the Great??

 

I'm watching my first episode and, so far, it's totally peen-centric.  Viagra:  blah blah blah.  Velcro:  I fear getting my thing caught in a zipper.  Internet:  Porn!

 

Good to know there's been some greater heft to earlier episodes.  My first impression is poor.

Edited by candall.
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I still enjoy this show more than I don't or I wouldn't be watching.  But there are annoyances. For instance, the lists and what they choose to leave off.  It seems like they were aware of scientology but chose not to use it out of fear of legal action.  Okay.  Fair.  And they acknowledged it.  But it appears like the sole reason they left out birth control was because it was controversial?  At least that's the impression I got but I only watched it once.  I think it's unfortunate they didn't include it because I would have liked to see them actually talk about why getting to control whether they become parents was so revolutionary.  The ability to have that choice has meant so much to women in many facets of life. 

 

In the episode on tyrants, they left off Stalin because, for whatever reason, they felt he was the clear cut winner and thought the discussion would be more interesting arguing secod place.  However, in last night's episode, they pretty much acknowledged that The Beatles was their choice for most influential band in the first segment.  With such an obvious winner, shouldn't they have left off The Beatles as they did with Stalin, and have a race for second place?  That said, I thought last night's episode was the best this show has done. Maybe it's because I don't know a ton about music history to be overly invested in the options but I thought it was a good set of panelists with someone who makes a living writing about music and another who makes a living at it.  And it the kind of topic where I believed the panelists had real opinions and didn't need to study to talk about it.

 

Actually, last week was like that too.  My biggest issue about last week, other than viagra over birth control, is how I didn't understand what they meant by "greatest."  When I think "greatest" I know it can mean "best" but it can also mean something along the lines of "most extensive." I thought knocking the internet because of its downsides was silly.  I still think the internet has revolutionized the world and the way we do things far more than anything else on their list.  Sure, it has brought some bad things but in many ways, it's akin to the way the printing press revolutionized the world. 

Edited by Irlandesa.
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Cooks use microwaves too, even if they won't always admit it. There are things it inarguably does better, like melt cheese on something, or re-warm old donuts or cookies (where you WANT the warming to happen from the inside out) or does almost as well, with far less investment, like steam vegetables or cook rice (assuming you don't have a rice cooker around, which is actually the least effort/best result, but a microwave is certainly as good as boiling rice in a pot).  What you can't usually do in a microwave is cause a Maillard reaction (the chemical change when you brown things), so that's why a lot of things inherently suck out of them---about the closest you can come is with those silvery sleeve things you put underneath microwave pizzas.

Being at work reminded me of how I appreciate microwaves. For those of us who do not work in the acting industry or for high end corporate jobs in big cities that cater lunches, I don't know what I would do without a microwave at work. Few jobs allow for actual cooking at work. There are some things that don't need heating. But a lot of that food isn't good for my wacky stomach, so I eat a lot of leftovers or other foods that need to be heated. So I also love the microwave.

 

And I hear people on how revolutionary the internet is. But we wouldn't have the internet without the computer. So that flips things a bit. I think the best invention episode was very difficult to define.

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And I hear people on how revolutionary the internet is. But we wouldn't have the internet without the computer. So that flips things a bit. I think the best invention episode was very difficult to define.

The invention was personal computer, though, and not computer.  So we could still have the internet without the personal computer but it likely wouldn't be as widespread.   However, I just see the personal computer as an incremental step up for those super huge computers.  It's important but not quite the leap I see with the internet.  But a lot of these are interdependent.

Edited by Irlandesa.
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The invention was personal computer, though, and not computer.  So we could still have the internet without the personal computer but it likely wouldn't be as widespread.   However, I just see the personal computer as an incremental step up for those super huge computers.  It's important but not quite the leap I see with the internet.  But a lot of these are interdependent.

The important link missing is the Web browser. That's the invention that started the transformation of the personal computer and Internet combo into the commercial and socially changing entity it became.  I mean even social media, the current game changer, wouldn't have happened without the Web browser happening first, even though the biggest example, Twitter, doesn't even rely on a web browser.

 

This is a distinction that might have gone above the heads of comedy writers, but it's important. Computers would have always been important to industry and commerce. The Internet would have always been important to educational institutions, military and government.  But the first (personal computers) was mostly a business tool (I'm considering even art & graphics work under that uber-category) and/or gaming platform before Web browsers. And the second (the Internet) was aside from "official uses" in government and education used by hobbyists. Web browsers didn't change that at first--in fact it just put that tendency in high gear--but it was kind of a case of cracking the door open. What followed were a range of early adoptions, from web animated cartoons, to online databases for things like movies, to careful baby steps towards first websites for some brave businesses. Then the hammer that drove things home were companies like AOL and Prodigy building web browsers into the services they'd already been providing people for access to BBS systems and early email service.

 

Actually that last is another equally overlooked contender for the crown. Email may seem more like a curse than a magic wand these days, but again if we go on the theory about what led to what, email is just as important a step as web browsers. It existed from the early days of government and university only Internet, but the simple IDEA that you could use these technologies, computers and The Internet, to COMMUNICATE with each other wasn't an inherent concept, arguably. That logic leap is what set in motion a lot of other things that brought most of the rest of the stuff relating to personal use of Information Technology forward, It was the early answer to "what can this stuff do for me?"--the answer for personal computers was already "help me maintain spreadsheets and databases and write letters for my business", and email started the answer for the Internet side of that (and web browsers finished that answer--at least until social media happened).

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Wow, I really, really enjoyed this week's episode.  The guests had great things to say, there was a good mix of real information and lightheartedness, and the topic was an interesting one.  I will say I'd have defined the topic a little better.  The focus seemed to be mostly on drugs that are/were illegal, but it was never said explicitly.  I say that because I'd have thrown sulfa drugs, birth control pills, and antibiotics on that list.  

 

I really enjoyed Maria Bello's LSD/Cheetos story as well as Craig's "Don't do LSD with the Manson family!" response to Derek's story.  Hee.

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Biggest Fall From Grace was an okay episode.  The Canadian guy was kind of a waste of space though--he cracked a few jokes but only a few and otherwise had little to say. Jay Leno was at least okay, and that P.R. guy was really great.  Also, Craig had a really juicy opening monologue, simply because Cosby is so easy to riff about.

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Ugh at Ty Pennington parroting the tired & debunked Orion Correlation/Hancock & Bauval/Ancients Aliens rhetoric during the "greatest man-made structure" episode. Almost expected Georgio Tsoukalos to pop up from behind the guests' seats on that one. And then again, the Brooklyn Bridge and the Hoover Dam wouldn't even be near my top 20 list, so...

Edited by Kaoteek.
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Ugh at Ty Pennington parroting the tired & debunked Orion Correlation/Hancock & Bauval/Ancients Aliens rhetoric during the "greatest man-made structure" episode. Almost expected Georgio Tsoukalos to pop up from behind the guests' seats on that one. And then again, the Brooklyn Bridge and the Hoover Dam wouldn't even be near my top 20 list, so...

 

I can't even with Ty Pennington.  I'd love to see Noel Wells and Adam Goldberg back, though.  Goldberg in particular has a lovely dry sense of humor.

 

I have a feeling the Brooklyn Bridge made the list just because of the story associated with it.  

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I enjoy the show, but I wish Craig would have more women on.  It seems like it's been only men find a while now. It would be nice to mix it up more. 

I do enjoy the discussions though, as well as the fact that this is actually an original show, and not just derivative of other ideas, as so many shows seem to be now.

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1 hour ago, LADreamr said:

I enjoy the show, but I wish Craig would have more women on.  It seems like it's been only men find a while now. It would be nice to mix it up more. 

Maybe it's just the episodes you've seen. While percentagewise I'm sure there's still been more men, I've seen women on many of the episodes. 

 

EDIT - Okay, the folks keeping track on Wikipedia say 11 women have appeared in 8 of the 15 episodes, including 3 episodes where 2 out of the 3 panelists have been women.  There's yet to be an all female panel however (while there have been a whopping 7 panels that were all male... thus your impression that it's been too guy heavy). 

Edited by Kromm.
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Yeah, I've watched every episode; it wasn't a random sampling.  I still enjoy the show, but the sausagefest gets old.  Especially when many of the men aren't all that interesting.

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I try to catch the show when I can; mostly because I miss Craig Ferguson on the Late Late Show.  He was the only talk show host that could sent me running to look up stuff on Wikipedia and/or the Net.

I had one gripe about one show -- the one about which drug changed history.  They were all mind-altering substances.  It would have been more interesting, IMO, if they had chosen others.  For instance, which has had more impact:

  1. Surgical anesthesia;
  2. Penicillin;
  3. Insulin; or
  4. The Pill?

I think that would have been massively interesting.

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I try to catch the show when I can; mostly because I miss Craig Ferguson on the Late Late Show.  He was the only talk show host that could sent me running to look up stuff on Wikipedia and/or the Net.

I had one gripe about one show -- the one about which drug changed history.  They were all mind-altering substances.  It would have been more interesting, IMO, if they had chosen others.  For instance, which has had more impact:

  1. Surgical anesthesia;
  2. Penicillin;
  3. Insulin; or
  4. The Pill?

I think that would have been massively interesting.

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