Bozell Column: Another Slice of Miami Vice
Network television is a pretty dreary place in the summer time. It’s somehow the perfect time for Hollywood executives to throw millions of dollars at ever-dumber sexualized content. It’s hard to tell what offends more, the raunch or the sheer stupidity of it all.
The network calling itself “The CW” is barely noticed at any time of the year, if quality were a determinant. So instead they seem to be competing for some kind of Nobel Sleaze Prize this summer with a Miami-based “reality” show called “The Catalina.”
Hotel owner Nathan Lieberman developed the show simply to promote bookings at his own hotel. That is how pedestrian our “entertainment” media have become. Illogical, too: Lieberman told one interviewer his audience is too young to book rooms with him. “The CW is a good fit for us because their demographic is very young. Even though at The Catalina the rates aren’t inexpensive enough for the spring break-type crowd, eventually they will grow up and have memories of the place they would like to visit again.”
After watching the show, it is fair to suggest it’s Lieberman and his oversexed employees who have the growing up to do. With only a limited run of episodes, “The Catalina” had to make an immediate impact, so they ramped up the raunch from the debut episode. Viewers were introduced to staffers like David: “I love David,” said one female employee. “He’s just a big ball of horny energy.”
Apparently, he’s competing with Eyal the bartender, who explained his sexual preference thusly: “What's my preference? My preference is very, very pretty. In any form. I do men, I do women, I do couples... If you're pretty, it's good.”
The Parents Television Council tagged this show as “Worst of the Week” four times in six weeks. In the third episode, as the hotel prepared to promote a book called “Sex in South Beach,” Eyal proclaimed, “This is a sex weekend. I think we should all have sex with each other.” He asserted “Sex cures the world. It’s the answer to your problems. It’s the answer to everything.”
It certainly wasn’t the answer for the CW. The show debuted to almost a million viewers, but quickly dropped to an average of about a half-million viewers. Even hormonal teenagers can see the stupidity.
Lieberman relentlessly tried to locate the wildest vibe possible, rewarding a couple with free shots for tonguing and groping each other on the patio furniture so everyone could watch. He explained the vision for his hotel (and the TV show): “Basically, it's my personality turned into a rock and roll [bleeped f***] palace.”
The “C” in “CW” does not stand for class.
Lieberman also attempted to use a pair of panties allegedly given to him by a guest as a pocket square, which he called the “pocket panty.” The hotel was so wild in the legend Lieberman was building that he implied the staff was asked to provide contraceptive room service. One female staffer re-enacted one apparent phone call: “He was really horny and he needs a condom. ‘I need a condom. I need a condom, like right now.’”
The second episode celebrated Gay Pride Week, and it was more of the same. Hotel manager Stephanie insisted the male staffers were there almost as sex workers: “I don’t care if they have to shake a tail feather, take their shirts off, do body shots, whatever it is to increase the sales for the hotel, they better do it.”
Two of the female staffers went to a gay club and felt accosted by a stripper, who thrust his pelvis at close range. One said, “What the [bleeped f***] just hit me in the face? We still have bruises on our faces!” The other replied: “Next time, I’m wearing a helmet.”
Maybe this is why God gave us scripts?
Another plotline in that episode featured Stephanie the thirty-something hotel manager flirting with Renaldo, the wine salesman. This is the woman Lieberman told the audience has “A-plus cleavage.” Later, a hotel employee explained how awesome it was that Lieberman let them copulate in the empty hotel rooms. Viewers were “treated” to an “unintentional” walk-in on Stephanie in the midst of implied glorious coitus with Renaldo.
Corporations actually paid money to be associated with this gunk. To be precise, that’s businesses selling products to young girls: Verizon cellular phones, L’Oreal, and Maybelline, among others. These companies are paying for soft-core porn to be peddled to children via a network that redefines imbecility.