Though it’s been almost a week since the Oscars, we wouldn’t dream of assembling a Top Five within a week of the big telecast that didn’t include some sort of Oscar-related content.
Fortunately, Jimmy Kimmel has expended ample energy these last few years to ensure his participation in ABC’s annual Oscar day, at least on the periphery with a special late-Sunday-night edition of “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” With video available from Jimmy’s extra-special effort this year, he’s leading our Top Five for reasons we’ll get into in about one second, if you will just read on.
1) “Movie: The Movie”: This was one of the videos Jimmy introduced in his after-the-Oscars special, another one of his team’s creations that features just about every major movie star under the sun – some unexpectedly, some not. The A-listers are apparently saying yes because Kimmel is the most successful of all the late-night hosts at producing videos that draw millions of additional viewers on YouTube (far more than watch his show, which averages in the neighborhood of 2 million viewers a night, if that). This movie-trailer spoof made a huge splash in its debut last Sunday, and was replayed Thursday night as Jimmy’s post-Oscar show got a special prime-time showcase on ABC.
Before we move on to No. 2 – here’s an honorable-mention selection that we feel obligated to include here: The second big video from Kimmel’s after-Oscars special, this one featuring a very game Oprah Winfrey who has to endure a series of pitches from Jimmy, who has his own off-beat ideas for new shows for Oprah’s OWN.
2) Country singer out-Springsteens Springsteen! We’ve been fans of Bruce Springsteen since around 1975 (approximately) so we always tend to perk up when we hear he’s going to be make one of his rare appearances on TV. And this week, he turned up multiple times on “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” to promote his new album “Wrecking Ball.” But truth be told, the highlight for us of this week’s Springsteen event on “Fallon” was Wednesday’s performance by Kenny Chesney of a Springsteen song, “I’m on Fire.” Why? Maybe because it’s interesting to see how another artist — in this case, a singer with a country twang — interprets a Springsteen song.
3) “Castle” is king: This past Monday’s episode of “Castle” interested us because it overtly joined TV’s newly discovered craze for fairy tales in shows such as ABC’s “Once Upon a Time” and NBC’s “Grimm.” “Once Upon a Time” was preempted by the Oscars Sunday night on ABC, but Monday’s “Castle” was titled “Once Upon a Crime” (lest we had forgotten about the other show) and it involved two murdered women, one dressed as Snow White and the other costumed as Little Red Riding Hood. (A press release described the search for the villain of the episode as a “Grimm hunt,” which we thought was a cheeky poke at NBC’s fairy tale series.)
Anyway, this Grimm “Castle” episode drew 9.1 million viewers, almost pulling even with “Hawaii Five-O” on CBS in the 10 p.m. Monday slot (9c). And besides, we happen to like “Castle” – which means it’s high time we featured the show in the Top Five.
4) Caan game: Stunt-titles are one thing, but we also appreciate the effort that goes into stunt-casting on prime-time shows, such as the guest-star “Hawaii Five-O” flew in to appear on this past Monday’s episodes – James Caan, father of one of the series’ stars, Scott Caan. Which one is he? The one who looks just like James Caan, that’s who! He was also seen in most of “Entourage” last season. How’d James Caan’s character wind up in Hawaii?
5) “No one makes fun of Tim Allen on my watch!”: Thus spoke Johnny Depp last Sunday night on Ricky Gervais’ newest HBO show, “Life’s Too Short,” a fictional docu-series about an actor, Warwick Davis, who happens to be a dwarf. The scene with Ricky and Johnny (who played himself) was uproarious — and it got us thinking about Tim Allen and his first-year ABC sitcom, “Last Man Standing.”
The show is drawing audiences in the mid-7 millions or thereabouts (Tuesday nights at 8/7c), which may or may not earn it a second season. So we thought we’d give it a boost by posting this week’s episode in our Top Five.
As for Johnny Depp and that scene with Ricky Gervais, here’s how it went down: In the scene, Depp got a chance to “confront” Ricky about the insult-comedy Ricky directed at Depp and Angelina Jolie at the 2011 Golden Globes for their movie bomb, “The Tourist.” On “Life’s Too Short,” Johnny got his “revenge” by reciting a string of insult-jokes aimed at Ricky, but before he got started, he looked straight at Ricky and, in an ultra-serious tone, made his statement of support for Tim Allen (who Ricky also insulted that same evening): “I want you to know this and I want you to carry this with you for the rest of your days,” Johnny said menacingly. “No one makes fun of Tim Allen on my watch and gets away with it!”