Category Archives: television

Don’t forget to watch one fat person get chosen over other fat people

Father Scott

Tonight marks the finale of The Biggest Loser, also known as the Paradise Lost of television.

Rather than ramble on about who’s going to win (Rudy) or who I want to win (Rudy), I’d like to introduce a one-time interactive Pax Arcana feature.

Keeping track of tears tonight would be both wasteful and pointless. The count will be staggering, because there is a live audience of other fat people who have been “inspired” by these fat people. So I provide no over/under — it’s off the board.

Rather, here is what we track: How many times does the wonderful Ali get sidetracked by an exuberant cast member who doesn’t realize that live TV requires carefully timed segments? We’ve all seen Ali try to wrest control of the program from these blubbering fools, and the results are always embarrassingly fun. Poor Ali. I have a shoulder you can cry on, Miss Sweeney. Two, in fact.

So the line is an ambitious 6.5 tonight. I think Danny alone could ramble past his due time at least 4 times. Let’s see how smooth Ali can keep this.

Enjoy the show, people. And if all this inspirational weight loss is a little too positive for you, you can always check this out to see a fat guy who fell off the wagon. (ht: Spackler)

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Tuesday Tubby Tearfest: Ranking the final four

Father Scott

Well I’m finally caught up in real time with the greatest show about the obese on the planet — I sucked it up and watched last week, then the previous episode out of order on Hulu. I’m still disgusted with you, free service that probably costs an arm and a leg to produce and yet only gets complaints from its users.

So we’ve reached the final four. I don’t really know what to expect from tonight’s episode — it says “at a special time” which might mean “we didn’t have enough good material for two hours, so we’re starting at 9” or even more egregiously “the President wants to talk to you and somehow that’s more important than watching fat people do jumping jacks.”

But I can tell you something about last week: Suze Orman is a frightening individual. I’m not sure she knows anything, but she has an abnormal amount of confidence in what she says. Listening to her talk about finances reminds me of when Jillian tries to do the psychobabble and the contestants who aren’t emotional infants (OK, there aren’t many of them) just kind of scoff at her.

So let’s talk big picture this week. Who’s winning this thing? I don’t think any really stand out as particularly dedicated, so it’s a tough call, but I’ll go in reverse order of my own personal rankings.

4. Liz. How is this woman still here? You know what Liz, your southern Grandma act is getting old. You have a charming accent. Get off my television so I can look at Ali a little more.

3. Danny. This man is the best earnest tear factory since Bob’s man-crush Mark from a couple seasons ago. But I think we’re going to see a plateau from Danny. GOOD GOD does he have a gut, also. Did he program his body to send all goods consumed directly to his stomach? How has he worked out for 3 months and lost 100+ lbs. and still have his stomach hang over his pants? Poor guy. But he’s not winning.

2. Amanda. I find Bob’s obsession with Amanda confusing. 1) Bob’s gay, right? And Amanda’s a woman, right? 2) She looks like LeAnn Rimes. A compliment? 3) She’s one of the few to walk out on a workout, and I actually think she’s done it more than once. What am I missing here? Anyway, she’s young and a female so she probably won’t plateau as much, but still, I don’t know that her heart is in it once she gets away from Bob.

1. Rudy. Rudy’s still got some weight to drop, but he’s got the athletic build and the endurance to keep going. Most importantly he’s got the drive from within, or at least he seems to. Jillian was pissed that he bottles it up, but sometimes I think it’s better to be less vocal about it, especially once you need to go back to regular life.


The description on the site is as follows:

Special time, 9/8c! Last season’s finalists return to cheer the final four on as they face their toughest challenge: a marathon.

Toughest challenge? Past season returning? A FREAKING MARATHON? This is a tear explosion, even with fewer contestants on the show. I’m setting the line at an unprecedented 24.5.


I probably won’t eat unhealthily during the show. For shame, I know. But I have a return to the flag football field this weekend, and am actually going to the gym after work, because I’m pretty sure if I ride on a bike machine for a couple hours this week I will officially be in shape before the game. But if I were to eat something horrible, it would be my go-to McDonald’s meal: a number 1 meal and a McChicken. That McChicken really does the trick.

And you know what I learned last night? Big Macs aren’t that bad for you, really. 29 grams of fat according to my Subway napkin. 29 grams of fat? I figured it was 60. NOW I CAN EAT TWO.

Enjoy the show, tiny folks.


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Tuesday Tubby Tearfest: Please go home, Tracey

Father Scott

Every so often, I have a dream that I am twisting one of my bottom teeth and it eventually pulls out of my mouth. It’s an extraordinary dream, because I feel like I experience something that I haven’t experienced in, what, 15 years?

And it feels so good. My tooth is hurting (in the dream), which is why I keep yanking on it. The relief is amazingly satisfying, and the sensation of touching the gum with your tongue after a tooth has vanished is unmistakeable.

Of course, I wouldn’t actually want to yank a tooth out of my mouth, even the offending tooth (which doesn’t really fit in my mouth because my teeth are perpetually tightening, twisting this sonofabitch enough to give me dreams that its removal would be a delight). The lack of tooth would create a ridiculous-looking hole in my mouth that would make me look even more homeless than my scraggly beard does. I’m happy with semi-homeless.

This is how Tracey feels about weight loss.

Tracey is an attention-grabbing, crazy-eyed, rumpled-haired, lying, illogical whore. OK, she does not sell herself sexually for money, as far as we know. But the rest is all documented.

But the thing is: She does not actually want to lose weight.

As Jillian so often says, “This is a CHOICE.” Everyone on the show has health issues, because they’re monstrously overweight. But not everyone runs off to Dr. Huizenga. If everyone had meetings with Dr. H every few days, wouldn’t there be dangerous levels of all kinds of stuff in their bodies? OF COURSE. And of course it’s dangerous for them to be working as hard as they are.

Sure, she passed out on the first episode because walking a mile is just too much activity. But I think there’s something psychological going on. Am I saying she intentionally passed out? No. But I think she’s psychologically weak, and that’s tying into physiological weakness. Tracey doesn’t want to lose weight, because she will no longer stand out. She will no longer be an obese, and in her mind, tragic figure, deserving of your sympathy. She’ll just be another annoying lady with kids.

Unlike my tooth, Tracey’s weight is actually a problem, and she would look better. But it would change how she is perceived in the world, and she can’t handle that.

Her attention-grabbing is getting old. It’s clear, as Pax said to me before I watched the last two episodes, that Tracey is just trying to become the star of the show, just as Heba did in season 6. Except that Heba combined strategy and melodrama with actual work, whereas Tracey talks, talks, talks, and sits, sits, sits. I officially do not believe The Biggest Loser scales — or they are just blatantly lying about how much activity she does — because it is totally illogical that some of these people bust their asses, and this ho loses weight and stays alive.

Tracey: You do not want to be The Biggest Loser. You do not even want to be ON The Biggest Loser. You want to be on TV. You want to be Octomom, not Mark from season 5. And I fucking hate Octomom.

Please go home, Tracey. And I hope Jillian pummels the shit out of you on the way out.


For those of you who are new to Tuesday Tubby Tearfest: Each week I provide an over/under for how many instances of crying will happen on the show. It’s a totally subjective determination, and the phrase is just as clunky as “percentage of weight loss of xx lbs.”. Generally, I consider an instance of crying being any time in which there are tears or blubbering. If you collect yourself and bawl again, I count it.

This season was out of control with the tears — I’m pretty sure episode 3 set some kind of record. But with Sean gone, I think it’s going to be more even keeled. The line is 13.5 this week. I’ll take the over, but I’m not that confident about it.


Well, Tracey if it were up to me. But the producers are clearly fucking with the game to keep her on.

I’m going to say Liz. The shit catches up with the older folks, and Liz may be late 40s, but she acts and looks about 60. She’s not nearly as committed as some of the other people, and when it comes down to it the voting depends on A) who needs to be there B) who they like the best and C) who wants to be there. I think people like Liz, but she doesn’t need to be there as bad as some (Rudy, Shay) and doesn’t want to be there as much as some (Shay again, and Daniel).

Enjoy the show, homies.


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Don’t call it a comeback

Father Scott

I live by a few simple rules in life. Always accept free cake. Don’t trust large, goofy scandinavians.

But the most important one is: If many women ask you to do something, do it.

And that rule is why I’m happy to announce the return of the greatest regular feature in the illustrious history of Pax Arcana: Tuesday Tubby Tearfest.

I lost interest in The Biggest Loser after season 6’s unlikeable cast was followed by season 7’s unwatchable cast. Basically, Paul left large shoes to fill (literally and figuratively). Wonder if he ever got over his post-show pneumonia.

With Samurai focus, I build this carrot tree. Carrot. Carrot cake. Pulled pork. Chocolate-covered nachos with mayonnaise. MMMMMM

Anyway, I have three more shows to catch up on to get back to real-time, but should be able to carve out four or five hours in my weekend of coke orgies to do so.

After episode 1, I have the following thoughts:

1) Jillian has become a parody of herself, to hilarious results. She’s still motherfucking insane.


2) Coach Mo is awesome. I dread his eventual dismissal (thanks for the spoiler, Pax).

3) Never before have I seen a reality cast more coached by the producers. How many sentences started with, “I feel like I have a second chance…” in the first episode? The over under was 143.5, and I’m betting Pax’s mortgage on the over.

4) Alison Sweeney is smokin’.

If you haven’t yet read Tuesday Tubby Tearfest, here’s what you can expect:

1) Making fun of fat people who cry

2) Philosophical discussions as to whether Jillian is human

3) What delicious food I eat while watching these fatasses struggle to get out of bed in the morning

If that doesn’t sound like your slice of pie, go back to tweeting about Balloon Boy, or whatever it is you people do.

UPDATE: OMGZ 47 billion hat tips to Pax for this astoundingly…something…video by/about Paul:


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No Leno

Pax Arcana

jay_lenoSo the big news in Boston these days is that our local NBC affiliate says it won’t air Jay Leno’s show when it moves to the 10 p.m. time slot (Conan gets the late night gig starting in a few months).

The affiliate, WHDH, says its 10 p.m. newscast will likely draw better ratings than Leno — who incidentally grew up in Andover just a short drive north from Boston. NBC is taking things in predictably good stride:

“WHDH’s move is a flagrant violation of the terms of their contract with NBC,” said John Eck, president of NBC TV Network. “If they persist, we will strip WHDH of its NBC affiliation. We have a number of other strong options in the Boston market, including using our existing broadcast license to launch an NBC owned and operated station.”

OK, then.

Obviously it would be a shame if we couldn’t see Leno in this area. Where else am I going to turn for bad jokes, forced banter with minor celebrities, and interviews with morons on the street? Oh yeah — I guess I could just watch the news.

Channel 7 says no to Leno []


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The end of Tuesday Tubby Tearfest

Father Scott

The Biggest Loser went out with a whimper last night. Thanks to rambling answers to questions and NBC’s need to replay every contestant’s backstory for the 8,000th time, we were left with a three-second celebration of Ali’s big victory — the confetti hadn’t even hit the floor by the time we were seeing their disclaimer and the beginning of another creepy Law & Order episode.

But that wasn’t the worst part. There was only one thing I was looking forward to in the final episode. It wasn’t the winner (Ali — big surprise…there wasn’t even any suspense about it). It wasn’t Jillian, who still looked like she would attack anyone who came near, Venus fly trap-style. It wasn’t even Bob and Mark’s loving exchange, though that’s always a plus.

It was Paul. Remember Paul? That fat slobby lovable d-bag who loved his ex-wife, always said the wrong thing, and was a lock to put all the weight he lost back on the second he left the show? Well, it appears he did, as Alison Sweeney (stick to scripted tv Alison, good God did you struggle with a live show) announced that Paul was “too ill” to attend. Too ill? I know he had pneumonia after leaving the show, and that is sad. But really, there’s only one reason he wasn’t on screen, and it had more to do with thickness than sickness.

We were robbed

Bad form, NBC or Paul, whoever made the decision. He was the most entertaining part of the show, aside from figuring out how the gayest man alive had the most masculine tattoos.

Somewhere, Mark is doing something inappropriate while reading this

A few other things I took away:

1. Kelly looked great. I really liked Kelly by the end of it. She never really cared about the gameplay and toughed it out through some serious injuries. She also lost what was effectively a teenager off her body.

2. Other than Mark, whose life changed in the same way as born-again Christians, I think Danny looked like he turned things around the most. They all obviously had major changes, but Danny’s still young and enthusiastic. He wasn’t on the show to prolong his life for the sake of his kids — obviously a great goal, though — he just wanted to live like a kid in his mid-20s. Bravo, Danny.

Rock out with your mohawk out

3. Holy crap, Lynn wasn’t as lazy as I thought!

4. Ali and Bette Sue comprise the most annoying family on television.

Left to right: still not that hot, insufferable

5. But most importantly, what am I going to blog about? Will Pax Arcana continue to get linked on without my wagering figures on fat people? Will Mrs. Pax Arcana continue to have reasons to send me text messages while her husband is none-the-wiser? The questions are unending.


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The value of a dollar is apparently weak compared to the pound

Father Scott

Since I didn’t do The Biggest Loser justice with yet another half-assed Tuesday Tubby Tearfest, I thought I’d chime in with some thoughts on last night’s show. (Shall we call it Wednesday Whaley Weepfest? We shall.)

I have three major problems with last night’s episode, which I deem the worst of the season.

First, the “challenge” that the contestants undertook was by far the dumbest that the producers have come up with. Let me count the ways: it wasn’t fun to watch, it was predictable (really, the blue team just loaded up on the chicks’ tables? Didn’t see it coming), it served no purpose, the “winner” didn’t do anything that deserved winning, it promoted ill feelings between the remaining “team” (which shouldn’t exist) and the two girls, after about three minutes of “action” there was really no need to keep participating because the outcome had been decided…do I need to go on?

Feel the drama: Mark runs around a basketball court loading up food onto tables

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Boston woman gots to get some of that Oprah scratch

Pax Arcana

Don’t. Look. Her. In. The. Eyes!

Oprah Winfrey strolls the grounds of her 80,000 square-foot secret lair, tucked into the side of a volcano on a remote island in the south Pacific. She pauses to pick up her platinum-plated megaphone — a gift from Tom Cruise.

“Beebo!” she bellows. “Beebo! Get me ABC on the phone. I have a wonderful idea for a marketing and product-placement bonanza that will make me look like I care about the chimney sweeps and ditch diggers my assistant says make up 99.9% of the population. Each week, I will have them give away token gifts to people in need — then I will award one winner $1 million at the end of the season. All while I rain advertising down on the viewers in a furious torrent of commercials and placement of featured products. The commoners will be so confused by their sobbing and wishful thinking that they will buy anything we put in front of them!”

Sadly, this is not how Oprah came up with the idea for Oprah’s Big Give. The reality is that she stole the idea from a Boston woman who pitched it to her production company back in 2005 — or so the woman claims.

Darlene Tracy, whom the New York Daily News describes as a “mother of four with no experience in TV producing,” says she sent a proposal to Oprah three years ago for a show called The Philanthropist — in which contestants vie for supremacy in drumming up charity money and making TV viewers cry:

Tracy claims she sent her pitch to Ellen Rakieten, executive producer of Winfrey’s talk show, and that Rakieten and another producer, Jennifer Thornton, wrote back to ask for more details.

Tracy contends she shipped off a fine-tuned business proposal on March 1, 2005. Four months later, Thornton allegedly told Tracy that Oprah’s company, Harpo Productions, was going to pass.

Then, in November 2006, Winfrey announced on her show that she was giving money to audience members so they could help their communities. The following month, she and ABC announced they were teaming up for “Big Give.” Tracy, representing herself, promptly filed a complaint in U.S. District Court in Boston seeking to stop “Big Give” from airing.

Tracy’s suit was dismissed in the Massachusetts court last year, without comment but presumably because the state of Massachusetts has nothing to do with this disagreement. Tracy is currently appealing.

For her part, Oprah has had 14 journalists murdered just for asking about the case, so don’t expect to see any public comments any time soon.

Her ‘Big Give’ suit says Oprah Winfrey is a big taker [NY Daily News]
Oprah Wins Dismissal of Copyright Infringement Suit [Findlaw]


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Wednesday filler: God hates shrimp

Pax Arcana

While it petered out after three or so seasons, the West Wing had a pretty good run, didn’t it?


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Tuesday Tubby Tearfest

Father Scott

Time for my favorite post of the week, but unfortunately, I have very little to add this week.

Since I was on my romantic rendezvous with Pax, I missed last week’s episode of The Biggest Loser. A friend who watches the show informed me that semi-douchey Mark was voted off, or rather volunteered to go after only losing a pound, and that the tears were a-flowin’.

Jillian’s starting to make the whole “she’s a really masculine chick” joke pretty easy

Since I’m going into the episode blind, I’m going with a low cry total this week. It’s common sense — if everyone got all worked up last week, surely they’ll come back to Earth this week. I’m going with 9 cries this week; and I’ll say that we’ll see another victorious week for the black team, with long-haired sap Dan being sent home.

With the predictions out of the way, here’s a video that has nothing to do with The Biggest Loser, but everything to do with the number 9. Rondo’s hands are inhuman.

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