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John Kiesewetter on the world of local and national TV

Senior Entertainment Reporter John Kiesewetter has been covering TV and media issues for 20 years. After joining the Cincinnati Enquirer in 1975 as a summer intern, he worked as a county government and suburban reporter; assistant city editor and suburban editor; and features editor supervising the Life section. He has a B.S. in journalism from Ohio University.

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Thursday, October 18, 2007

The Worst Show Ever On TV?

Some critics are calling CBS' new "Vival Laughlin" the worst show of the fall TV season. At least one has questioned whether it could be the worst show in the history of television.

For the first time since Steven Bochco's short-lived "Cop Rock" in 1990, CBS brings a musical-drama to prime-time. But will what worked for "High School Musical" do much for CBS? Rival Nevada casino owners (Hugh Jackman, Lloyd Owen) break into songs such as “Let It Ride” and “Viva Las Vegas” in the show (10 p.m. today, Channels 12, 7), which moves to its regular 8 p.m. on Sunday time period this weekend.

Unlike "Cop Rock," we'll recognize the songs. But that doesn't help the bad, predictable story line about a businessman (Owen) and his wife (Madchen Amick) trying to open a casino when their financial backer pulls out, and later is found murdered. (I almost didn't recognize Melanie Griffith as Bunny the widow.)

So watch tonight and tell me what you think. In the meantime, let's compile a list of the all-time worst TV shows. "Joey?" ""The Mullets?" "John From Cincinnati?" "Homeboys in Outer Space?" "Hiller & Diller?" "The Hat Squad," Andrew Dice Clay's "Bless This House?"

And should we have a separate division for reality shows: "Temptation Island?" "Joe Millionaire?" "Are You Hot?"


at 10/18/2007 10:54 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

No question. ABC's "if you blinked, you missed it" didn't last a half hour flop "Turn On."

at 10/18/2007 11:00 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dude, Joe Millionaire doesn't belong anywhere near this list. The finale for the 1st season was one of the highest rated shows of the year. I know that doesn't make it high quality programming, but really that many people don't all have a taste for crap.

at 10/18/2007 11:06 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I still think Cavemen should be in this mix.
from the neighborhood

at 10/18/2007 11:54 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

head cases, 4kings, joey. Any comedy from NBC that is not called the office, earl, friends or frasier.

at 10/18/2007 12:01 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't believe it's worse than "Squidbillies".

at 10/18/2007 12:18 PM Anonymous Paul Gardner said...

The worst show ever on TV was "IN LIVING COLOR." I told you I'd buy you lunch in a letter to the editor years ago if it lasted. Of course it flopped. That's why I never bought you lunch.

at 10/18/2007 12:19 PM Blogger John Kiesewetter said...

To Anon 10:54 AM
"Turn On!" Yes! I saw it, but thought it was too obscure to mention here. From "Laugh-In" producer George Schlatter. Only one telecast: Feb. 5, 1969.

at 10/18/2007 1:11 PM Blogger Kevin LeMaster said...

Wait..."Laughlin" is a musical? Why didn't they alert us to that in their disclaimers?

Eh, doesn't really matter. I didn't plan on watching it anyway.

at 10/18/2007 1:16 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Viva Laughlin" is based on the BBC's "Blackpool" (which aired on BBC America as "Viva Blackpool"). I'd personally think it's an interesting show and if it's anything like "Blackpool", it should be pretty good.

But seriously, comparing it to "Cop Rock" is like comparing "Friends" to "Joey"

at 10/18/2007 1:18 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Paul Gardner:

How can you say something that last four seasons and helped launch the careers of Damon Wayans, David Alan Grier and Jim Carrey "flopped"?

at 10/18/2007 2:40 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

The following shows strike a nerve as horribly bad or vastly overrated:

War At Home
Crisis Center
Small Wonder
7th Heaven
Beauty and the Beast
Dawson's Creek
Grown Ups
The Mullets
Two Guys and a Girl
Herman's Head
Will & Grace
Suddenly Susan
The Single Guy
Team Knight Rider
Tom's Show
Life Goes On
Big Brother
The Game
Good Morning, Miami
That's Life
That's My Bush

at 10/18/2007 2:49 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

And how about Roll out?
from the neighborhood

at 10/18/2007 5:06 PM Blogger Toddy-O said...

The Neighbors, a game show hosted by Regis back in the 70's....and 3's a Crowd, another bad gameshow.

at 10/20/2007 5:23 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

The worst show on TV will be the new Channel 5 morning show with Jonathan Hawgood.

at 10/22/2007 12:10 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I watched "Viva Laughlin" last night (Sunday) and last week. Both times I said, "this is the weirdest show - I don't know if I like it or hate it!" This morning I still didn't have an answer so I thought, "I bet Kies has a comment!" Wow! Little did I realize it could be the worst show on TV. I know one thing, it's one of the strangest shows ever on TV! So corny. But, also, the actors are "singing" to someone else's singing, like karaoke, and I'm thinking those actors can't sing. The real singer's voice pretty much drowns out the singers' voices. Strange!

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