So I felt like I hit the lottery today when one of my loyal fans sent me an IM saying I needed to re-open the Bennies because The Marriage Ref is a "staggeringly ill-conceived and borderline retarded in its execution." It was at that moment I knew my first correspondent. His name -- Shemp X. Here's his review of the latest offering from NBC:
If anyone missed the estimated seven billion commercials that aired during the Winter Olympics the last two weeks, Jerry Seinfeld's The Marriage Ref debuted after the closing ceremonies Sunday night. This show proves that Jay Leno at 10 p.m. is not the worst decision NBC has made in recent memory.
Here's how it works. Jerry and two celebrities (Alec Baldwin and Kelly Ripa in the 30-minute pilot) watch video of couples having an argument in which one of them is obviously wrong. The celebs comment on it, theoretically cracking wise and throw around zingers. The studio audience then proceeds to cackle with obligation. (Or perhaps they were simply watching YouTube footage of that baby panda sneezing?)
Anyhoo, the titular “Marriage Ref,” an unknown square-headed comedian Tom Papa, renders his verdict on who is the bigger doofus. Somewhere during this mess, one of the NBC News
modelsreporters offers meaningless stats on how many people stuff dead pets or take stripper aerobics -- presumably things that might dissolve a marriage. The show closes with Marv Albert highlighting his favorite quotes from the night in a vaguely SportsCenter-esque moment.
Yes, you heard that all correctly. America last night received marital advice from Alec Baldwin (whose divorce from Kim Bassinger makes the Hatfields/McCoys rivalry look like a church banquet) and Marv Albert -- who once plead guilty to assault and battery, bit a woman and was up on forcible sodomy charges. Makes sense, right? Perhaps the better question is, do we really need celebrities making fun of regular people? So much to answer, so little interest in doing so.
And now for the really bad news...as of Thursday, The Marriage Ref expands to an hour.