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  1. #31
    Kanai Nemeses's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oongaboonga;2195950;
    lol but think about it... the first criminal that he pulls over or arrests is going to do a serious double take. I hope it's some drugged out crazy who can't stop screaming that Ponch can't arrest him because he's not real.
    I'd doubt that there would be that many people who even recognize him if it weren't for the camera and production crew that would be strapped to his behind. Ponch was a long time ago, and Indiana was hardly a hotbed of Erik Estrada fandom. I realize Estrada's made a good living in Mexican soap operas since then, but he'd be more recognizable in mid-America from the real-estate hawking infomercials he's on in late-night cable TV. He's just not a top-of-mind-awareness guy these days.

    It's hard for me to imagine the premise of a show being more boring than this one. It'd be a more interesting show if they had a reality show where various members of the Jackson family went on a global search to find the original pieces of their faces.
    I live in my own world. But it's ok, they know me there.
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  2. #32
    runs with scissors waywyrd's Avatar
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    Shh, Nemeses...don't give them any ideas! I have no desire to know what happened to Michael's real nose (or LaToya's, for that matter).
    Time you enjoy wasting was not wasted - John Lennon

  3. #33
    Endlessly ShrinkingViolet's Avatar
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    Here's another article about the show and the five "C-listers" who star in it:

    'Armed & Famous,' a.k.a. La Toya's Last Shot

    By Lisa de Moraes
    Friday, January 5, 2007

    CBS next week will debut a reality series in which it has armed with loaded guns a bunch of has-beens, including a 21-year-old recovering drug addict who says he has attempted suicide, once put a knife to his sister's throat and once shot her, and who says he had enormous difficulty handling the stress of his previous reality-series experience.

    Joining Jack Osbourne -- son of Ozzie and former star of MTV's "The Osbournes" -- on "Armed & Famous" are La Toya Jackson, Erik Estrada, professional skateboarder Jason "Wee-Man" Acuņa and former WWE wrestler Trish Stratus.

    In the series, the five C-listers were put through something approximating the training given to reserve police officers in Muncie, Ind., and then put to work as cops on the 6 p.m.- 2 a.m. shift in that city of 70,000 residents, 60 miles northeast of Indianapolis.

    Ironically, Muncie Police Chief Joe Winkle told reporters yesterday on a phone conference call that Osbourne was one of the two C-listers best suited for the gig (Stratus was the other).

    Estrada and Jackson would be nixed in real life because they are in their 50s; the age limit is 36 for new recruits, Winkle explained. The young Osbourne, on the other hand, "works well with people, is pretty strong verbally" and "seems to have a knack for the job."

    And he's a good shot, doing the best by far among the five in firearms training.

    Not surprising. In the first episode of "Armed & Dangerous" Osbourne tells the camera, "I love shooting guns -- they make me feel good. I started shooting guns at 6; at 8 I shot my sister. . . . Right now I own two guns."

    And that's not the first time he's used a sister for weapons training. In his autobiography he says, "From the moment I became a teenager I started having trouble controlling my temper. I would have these incredible fits of rage. I'd trash my room and get into really nasty vicious fist fights with my sisters. I think the boiling-point for my parents came when I held a knife to Kelly's throat."

    In his autobiography and in interviews, Osbourne has said being catapulted to celebrity status while doing "The Osbournes" was "like a shock to the body" and an "insane" experience.

    "You get followed by photographers, you can't go out and have a cup of coffee with a friend without someone coming up to you with a picture and saying 'Sign this.' . . . It's stressful."

    Still, Winkle told the reporters Osbourne's well-documented instability was "not a concern" so long as he had not been arrested for his actions. "My understanding is he's not had an arrest for any of those things," Winkle told reporters. He said Osbourne passed the psych test, and the show's executive producer, Tom Forman, who was also on the call, jumped in to say Osbourne passed it "with flying colors."

    Reporters on the conference call seemed remarkably un-knicker-knotted about the premise of this show -- Jack Osbourne + La Toya Jackson + guns.

    But then, they've become numbed by CBS's long history of incendiary reality series setups. Way back in summer '01, the network introduced on the Webcast of "Big Brother" a drunken Justin Sebik holding a knife at the throat of a drunken Krista Stegall and inquiring whether she would mind if he killed her. (CBS suits said at that time there was no way they could have seen that coming because Sebik had passed the psychological review with flying colors. Hmmm, that sounds vaguely familiar.)

    More recently, CBS brought us "Survivor: Race Wars." And let's not forget "Amish in the City"; granted, that ran on UPN, but it was developed under CBS chief Les Moonves.

    We asked one or two critics why they had not become more exercised about this new reality series. Doing so, they noted wearily, only gives the network boatloads of free publicity for the series and does not stop CBS from airing the show (see "Survivor: Race Wars").

    Even so, one critic, understandably, wanted to know how much it cost to insure a show in which La Toya Jackson was given a loaded gun.

    "Not as high as you would expect," Forman responded, explaining that the "training was real."

    Yeah, training of La Toya Jackson, hello.

    Forman went on to say that he wanted to make this series to show people how tough it is to be a rookie cop "through the eyes of someone they can identify with."

    You know, like La Toya Jackson.

    But anyway, the reporters seemed to swallow that one, which is probably what gave Forman the confidence to start laying on the applesauce very thick -- like when he said the skills that make "a good Hollywood star" (we think he meant the C-listers here) also make for a good police officer.

    You know, like "walking the red carpet with the paparazzi screaming at you is not bad training for dealing with a domestic dispute."

    Yes, he really did say that. And now the picture of Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie toiling as social workers on the next "Simple Life" is seared into our brain forever. Thanks for that.
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  4. #34
    Donato Mafia Veggieviewer's Avatar
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    msn.com has a video clip of Jack Osbourne and Estrada getting tasered, and Erik shares TMI

  5. #35
    FORT Fogey
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    I've got to wonder if this show will even last six episodes. I predict it'll flop too.

  6. #36
    Endlessly ShrinkingViolet's Avatar
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    One thing about this show--there has been a lot of print material about it. You've got to love these comments from a Muncie resident:

    "They got too damn many reality shows on TV already. Besides, this isn't reality," said a grumpy Chet Skaggs, who was selling sweatshirts in a gravel parking lot next to a liquor store on the city's north side.

    They just brought a bunch of dummies in from California. ... I think this is crazy," Skaggs added, giving voice to the more vociferous viewpoint in Muncie.


    Arrested development

    Struggling Muncie, Ind., hopes CBS' new celebrity-cop reality show, 'Armed & Famous,' will get the city going gangbusters.

    BY TIM JONES
    CHICAGO TRIBUNE
    January 7, 2007

    When the sun goes down and the streets go dark, scofflaws in the old industrial city of Muncie, Ind., wonder if this will be the night they're brought to justice by La Toya Jackson, Ozzy Osbourne's kid Jack or - and this would really be special - "Wee Man," all 4feet, 7 inches of him.

    Crime-fighting has entered the reality TV phase in Muncie, complete with a cast of five celebrities, TV cameras, free T-shirts and cash for suspects who agree to be photographed. And while only the most generous assessments would conclude that these C-grade actors in regulation blue are real police officers, they certainly play them on TV, and now in Muncie.

    All of this has the locals yapping like magpies.

    In fact, it's almost impossible to find citizen indifference to "Armed & Famous," a new reality TV cop show that recently wrapped up production and premieres Wednesday at 8p.m. on CBS. It has the Hollywood imports doing real police duty alongside Muncie's finest, who are never more than a couple of steps away, just in case things get out of hand. That means making traffic stops, domestic calls, prostitution busts - that kind of stuff.

    Fear of embarrassment

    Understand that Muncie is a Rust Belt city that has suffered an awful lot of painful, economic reality in the past 30 years. So the city's grasp for the proverbial 15 minutes of network TV fame - and on a reality show - has some folks worried that when the video editors separate the recorded wheat from the chaff, the chaff will get aired and the people of Muncie will look like idiots.

    "They got too damn many reality shows on TV already. Besides, this isn't reality," said a grumpy Chet Skaggs, who was selling sweatshirts in a gravel parking lot next to a liquor store on the city's north side.

    "They just brought a bunch of dummies in from California. ... I think this is crazy," Skaggs added, giving voice to the more vociferous viewpoint in Muncie.

    The lower-volume rebuttal is more measured and frankly acknowledges the risk of opening a community to the glare of commercial television and the need to make something that draws ratings. But the clincher for advocates is their belief that any publicity is good publicity - just as long as you spell my name right.

    "This is an opportunity to showcase my police department and put Muncie on the map," said Police Chief Joe Winkle, the city's top cop for 11 years.

    "Cities all around the country spend money to promote themselves, but you couldn't pay for the advertising you'd get on CBS on a Wednesday or a Thursday night," said Winkle, who was involved in negotiations to create the reality show. "It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity."

    The idea was hatched during the summer by TV producer Mike Braverman, a Muncie native who said he wanted to make a show "about the life of a cop seen through the eyes of celebrities."

    "We want to parachute someone into a police department and see if they sink or swim," he said.

    Not surprisingly, there's a lot of buzz about celebrity sightings which, if nothing else, provides a temporary diversion from news that a big auto-parts plant in town could be at death's door.

    This isn't the first time Muncie has been under media scrutiny. Situated along the I-69 industrial strip between Indianapolis and Fort Wayne, Muncie is one of the most studied cities in the nation. During the 1920s it was the locale for the groundbreaking sociological report "Middletown: A Study in Modern American Culture." That spawned follow-up examinations and documentaries, which led to Muncie references, filming or inspirations for such movies as "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," "Hoosiers" and "The Hudsucker Proxy." Country artist Toby Keith sang about "your nana up in Muncie, Indiana."

    All that attention, for some residents, is more than enough.

    "I think we're more likely to be embarrassed by this," said Jessica Wilburn, executive chef at an upscale downtown restaurant who was taking an afternoon break outside. "I think it's kind of silly for people to be pulled over by celebrities. I mean, who wants to be pulled over by Wee-Man?"

    Deeply tanned and a little paunchy, 57-year-old Erik Estrada, who starred in the 1970s motorcycle cop show "CHiPs," is the only one of the five-person celebrity cast who has the remotest connection to police work. Winkle said the department is careful how the celebrities are used. They always travel with seasoned officers and are never involved in homicide calls or big drug deals, he said. And they are supervised closely.

    "They're busy. There's hair and make-up requirements; there's interviews. We keep them on a tight leash," Winkle said.

    Push-up problem

    The five actors had to pass physical endurance tests to qualify as "reserve" officers - run 1.5 miles in 16 minutes and 28 seconds; do 30 sit-ups in a minute; and do 25 push-ups in a minute. Jackson, a singer-actress and sister of Michael Jackson, still has not satisfied the push-up requirement.

    "We're working with her on that," Winkle said. "I think she'll get there."

    There are other safeguards, such as making sure that Jason "Wee Man" Acuna doesn't respond to any crime calls at Ball State University, populated by students who might recognize him as the star of the MTV series "Jackass." "Wee Man" is big with the college crowd, Winkle said.

    "There are still a lot of public people who think this is a terrible idea and we'll be embarrassed," the chief said. "All I can say is, Muncie is what it is. I love this town and I'd never do anything to make it look bad. The only way we get embarrassed is if we embarrass ourselves."
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  7. #37
    runs with scissors waywyrd's Avatar
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    "They got too damn many reality shows on TV already. Besides, this isn't reality," said a grumpy Chet Skaggs
    I'm guessing Chet won't be joining us in the forums, then.

    I love how the "suspects" get free t-shirts and money for agreeing to be photographed. No fair. All the times I've been pulled over for speeding, I've only gotten a stinking ticket and a fine.
    Time you enjoy wasting was not wasted - John Lennon

  8. #38
    Yee Haw! TnCountryChick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Veggieviewer;2198439;
    msn.com has a video clip of Jack Osbourne and Estrada getting tasered, and Erik shares TMI


    I saw that too!

  9. #39
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    I dunno, to me, from what I've read right here, it seems like Armed and Famous might actually have that special something that keeps it alive: slightly quirkier than other shows, slightly more specific than other shows, smaller cast, more time to get to know each character. I think it might work.

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by waywyrd;2199077;
    I love how the "suspects" get free t-shirts and money for agreeing to be photographed. No fair. All the times I've been pulled over for speeding, I've only gotten a stinking ticket and a fine.
    That's funny, I didn't know that. How does that work though, if they're arrested for something? Do they let them wear the free t-shirts in jail? Do the t-shirts have pictures of the cast in uniform on them? I'd love Jack Osbourne to arrest someone for buying a dime bag, then give them their fee (how much, anyway?) just to have them turn around and buy more drugs with it...

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