WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re already one episode into the season on Making the Band 3 (or season two, or cycle two, or version 2.0 or something) and Diddy is fired up. This will not be a failure like last season, dammit. He WILL make a mediocre band that will have one lackluster album and then disappear. Now that Diddy has narrowed down his list of singers to twenty, it’s time for us to really get the show started. And that means cutting some people. But not until after we make them do stupid stuff. To quote our president: Ã¢â‚¬Å“Bring. It. On.Ã¢â‚¬?
Now before we start IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d just like to point out that Microsoft WordÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s spell-check is funnier than me when it comes to goofing on these girls’ weird names. Denosh comes out as Danish, Taquita is Tequila and Tokiko is Toking. But before you laugh too much IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d also like to point out I was 1200 words deep into a much funnier recap and then Word lost it. So what youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re reading now is a pale imitation of that brilliant first draft. Damn you, Microsoft. Damn you to hell. As the show opens itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s morning in the Making the Band loft and the place is full of girls in their underwear. Now I suppose I could make a joke right now about how itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s just like my apartment every Saturday morning, but that would be disrespectful to all the woman I sleep with so I won’t go there. Diddy appears and he says he is very happy, which is represented by the graphics department of MTV by having bright shiny purple sparkle effects around his head. If only life was like that. It makes me wonder, if I punched Diddy in the face would he have a bunch of cartoon birds circling his head? I hope to one day test this theory. Diddy tells us that he thinks he has some talent to work with and believes he can finally create a band. Who knows, maybe they will even be better than the New Monkees. And we all know how tough it is to fill those shoes.
The Magical World of DiddyÃ‚Â©
After the girls are dressed and ready they all head down to Smash Studios where Johnny Wright is explaining their first assignment. They are going to be given three songs and split into groups. They must then learn the songs and go sing them a capella in Times Square. The songs they are given are “WhoÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Loving You,” ” Where Did Our Love Go?” and “Lady Marmalade.” After the girls are split into five groups of four, they start practicing. What happens next almost shatters my eardrums.
One group consisting of Denosh, Aubrey, Melissa and Taquita are doing their first run throughs. Aubrey, who survived from season one, is “singing” “Lady Marmalade,” and I put singing in quotation marks on purpose because I’m not sure that what was coming out of her mouth can really fall into that category. Remember the noise that that big alien spaceship made in Star Trek 4? You know, the one where we found out whales are really space aliens. She sounds like that, only her noises wonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t cause the whales to destroy Earth. At least I donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t think so. Now I really don’t like the song “Lady Marmalade,” so imagine what it was like having to listen to it 15 times all in the span of twenty minutes, each one worse than the last. After she butchers it for a few seconds, which felt like an eternity, Doc cuts her off, and even her cutesy finger to the mouth “Did I do somefing wong?” move doesn’t help her this time. “You need to work on that, because I’m not comfortable with it.” Comfortable is an overstatement. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m sticking tissues in my ears to collect all the blood.
Over in the other group with Shannon, Malika, Kaui and Dominique (how much trouble you think some of these girls have getting personalized coffee mugs at the mall?), things aren’t going well either. Malika is also stinking up the joint, and Doc is calling her out. “You’re killing us,” he says. Malika’s defense is that she’s used to performing on her own and not in a group. Which makes me wonder, didn’t this come up at all last season? I mean the whole point of the show is to develop a singing group. She survived as a finalist from the first season not knowing how to sing in a group? ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s like showing up for The Amazing Race and not knowing how to read a map, or being in the Big Brother house and not knowing how to stab Kayser in the back.
Over in the group with Chelsea, we see that she has decided to wear the John Lennon New York City t-shirt, since she felt that the I Ã¢â‚¬Å“HeartÃ¢â‚¬? New York shirt just didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t scream tourist loud enough. Her two main goals today are to be able to get the harmony right on “WhoÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Loving You” and make sure she picks up one of those awesome Statue of Liberty snow globes in Times Square.
Later on some of the girls go out onto the street to practice, thus inflicting their special brand of pain to the residents of SoHo. Dominique, who’s proving to be the most talented of the group, says that the song itself is not that hard to sing, as long as you have a sense of harmony – which Malika clearly does not have.
In the studio, Denosh has stepped up and become the leader of Aubrey’s group and Aubrey tells us that she isn’t always being “respectful” as a leader, which is girl code for “I think she’s a bitch.” In DenoshÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s defense, Aubrey hasn’t exactly been respectful to my inner ear canal either, so you canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t blame her. I sense the groundwork for our first bitchfight have now been firmly planted.
Back in the loft Malika is worried. On the phone with her friend she tells her about how she is having trouble getting the harmony. Malika may not have great harmony in the group, but what she does have is an amazing fashion sense, because she is wearing huge pink sunglasses (it’s night of course), a pink top and earrings that have earrings on them. Maybe sheÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s confused as to why sheÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s here. The show is about getting a group of singers, not a group of supervillains capable of taking on the Justice League.
Meanwhile, at the Hall of Justice…
Now that we have spent about three whole minutes this episode on Malika’s inability to harmonize within the group, itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s getting increasingly clearer that she is the one getting booted this week. It’s what I like to call the Survivor rule. If itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s early in the season and they spend an inordinate amount of time on someone in an episode, that means they are going home. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the early reality show glut when youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve got 22 minutes to cover 20 girls.
The next morning Aubrey wakes up and lets us know that she is feeling a little hoarse. Amazingly, she actually managed to sound worse than she did the night before. Think Harvey Fierstein with a hot body. Actually donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t, because I just did and it was disturbing. Her voice problems arenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t helped by the fact that she is downing a huge glass of wine, Axel Rose style (OK, so it’s probably just some herbal tea and honey, but itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s in a wine glass). When she overhears Denosh talking some trash about her, Aubrey brings us our first official girl fight of the season. And itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s somewhat disappointing. Maybe itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s because it is seven in the morning on the first day, but they didn’t even raise their voices. Hopefully things will change soon enough. I mean when you have 20 girls living together under one roof and competing with each other, itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s just a recipe for disaster. Either that or they will all run around in their underwear having tickle fights. So itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s basically a win-win for me.
Once they are off to Times Square Diddy tells us how this is NY, baby, and if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere. I think that saying was coined for people who actually make it on Broadway, not singing for a few bucks in Times Square. I mean if weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re going to lower the bar that low, I could Ã¢â‚¬Å“make itÃ¢â‚¬? in NY. In fact I think IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m gonna give it a shot this Saturday at around noon, right in front of ESPN Zone. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll be the one break dancing for loose change. I learned all my moves from Alfonso RuberioÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s break dancing kit, so you know I can throw down.
Now let me tell you, the competition in Times Square is rough. You’ve got the Singing Cowboy on one end singing country songs in his briefs, and the Black Israelites on the other end screaming about the white Devil. Throw into the mix 20 girls singing bad versions of “Where Did Our Love Go?” and they will barely raise an eyebrow. And thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s pretty much what happens. How funny is it to watch the future members of the next big girl group get ignored by Albanian busboys on their way to work? Pretty damn funny.
Suffice it to say, most of them are pretty horrible. Some highlights include Tiffany improving in between “voulez vous coucher avec moi’s” by singing “we take tips y’all,” and Wanita wearing a rainbow scarf that reminded me of Toucan Sam’s beak. Also, Tiffany was able to extend the “ade” in marmalade to about 12 syllables. Bravo.
Denosh and Aubrey’s group actually don’t make out too bad. “WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re all just trying to get along” says Denosh, which I can guarantee will be proven false in about two more episodes. Malika’s, on the other hand, still suffers from her bad singing, although Malika is convinced she did well.
Back in the loft, all the girls are nervous over the first eliminations. Jasmine, using the most-used expression in reality TV history, says you could cut the tension with a knife. That’s kind of like hearing a pitcher say he needs to take things “one game at a time” in his post-game interviews. “We’re figuring, whoever made the least amount of money is going home.” says Chelsea. Ahh Chelsea, you obviously don’t know the mind of Diddy. Finally Johnny comes by with the results of the competition, which is who made the most money. So the girls start counting their money, and as they do I notice that some of the people who dropped money in their boxes left actual pennies. That’s just harsh.
Once they are done adding it up it’s time for the results. The winner is group 5 with $200.98. Now all this money is for charity, so you can imagine the delight the local March of Dimes will feel when they get a call saying Diddy is going to be donating some money, and then the look on their faces when they open an envelope with a check for two hundred bucks. Ah, I’m just kidding, I’m sure Diddy has given tons of money to charity. It was all chronicled in his recent campaign “Donate or Die.”
Regardless of the results Johnny says he is proud of all of them. Then he mentions tomorrow they are going to be seeing “The Diddy,” which just makes me laugh. Although being referred to as “The EdHill” does have a nice ring to it. “I know he ain’t gonna cut me on the first round. Girl deserves a little respect,” says Malika. Dead woman walking. They might as well have a neon sign around her neck that says “CUT”.
Next up the girls are brought before His Holiness the Diddy Llama. “The worldÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s biggest stage to me is Times Square,” he says. So you can just go suck it Royal Albert Hall. Speaking as someone who has actually spent numerous times walking around Times Square, as opposed to Diddy who just glimpses it for a second while running from the bar to his limo after his bodyguard starts shooting (hey, that is where it happened. Although to be fair, he was acquitted), Times Square is just a loud annoying headache. I did get this sweet velvet painting of Leonardo Dicaprio there once. Oh Leo, you had me at hello…
Anyways. We then get treated to “Lady Marmalade” five times in a row. Yeah! Some groups are good, and some are just horrible. And virtually all the outfits look like something out of a schizophrenic hookerÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s closet. Once The Diddy hears what he needs to hear he has them all leave so he can make his decision. And Diddy is in a cutting mood. While outside we hear Malika say that doing this again is “too much for one body to handle.” Hey, don’t you dare tell me that when Stephanie is going through her second straight Survivor eating bugs and passing out from hunger!
They bring the girls back and Diddy finally reveals who’s cut. Nicole, Tokiko and Sammy. What!?! No Malika? They wasted all that screen time on her and she wasn’t cut? Well played, Mr. Diddy. Well played. Although I take personal offense at you eliminating Tokiko, easily the funniest name in the entire bunch. This is far from over.