At half past eleven on Monday night, I caught myself yawning for the umpteenth time through Lipstick Jungle (Living +1) and wondering what all the fuss was about. Created by DeAnn Heline and Eileen Heisler, from a novel of the same name by Sex And The City (SATC) author Candace Bushnell, it’s Living’s new baby. Albeit without the pzazz, energy, humour, wit and originality of SATC. To support its new acquisition, Living launched its biggest ever marketing campaign; partnerships with Coffee Republic and Heat magazine (which created a Living-branded faux back cover) were just for starters. I even saw a ‘Lipstick Jungle’ logo on a pavement on London’s Kings Road.
Yet for all that activity and hype, the return was just 200,000 viewers. Including a very bored yours truly. In short, extremely disappointing for Living. Embarrassing even.
Lipstick Jungle revolves around the lives and loves of three women: married mother-of-one movie executive Wendy Healy – played by Brooke Shields. Married magazine editor-in-chief Nico Reilly (24’s Kim Raver), and fashion designer Victory Ford (Lindsay Price, best known here for her role as Janet Sosna Saunders on Beverly Hills 90210). So far, so what? is what I say. OK, it’s only the first episode and it may yet improve (SATC didn’t find its feet immediately either) but it left me cold.
Everything’s so blah – the script, the characterisations, the fashions, the interiors…The person that stood out, the one that immediately intrigued, is Victory’s Mr Big – billionaire knight in shining armour Joe Bennett. He’s played with assurance by 80s brat-packer heartthrob Andrew McCarthy (Mannequin, Pretty In Pink, St Elmo’s Fire). I want to know more about him; I want to find out what makes him tick – can’t say the same about anyone else.
Initial stateside reviews weren’t exactly enthusiastic; The New York Times called it a "wooden clog of melodrama squeezed into a flimsy, satin and marabou mule". Entertainment Weekly said it’s "full of awful lines", while showbiz bible Variety said SATC: "did it better already" and America’s TV Guide called it "excruciatingly self-derivative". Over here, The Independent said: "Lipstick suffers from dialogue that is at best clunky, and at worst toe-curlingly inane." As for moi? My feelings can be summed up with a shrug of the shoulders and one word: meh.
Today I am mostly lovin’ – I went to a press screening for The Second Coming, the third-season opener for Heroes. I’ve got to admit, I switched off during the tedious second season. However, from what I’ve seen, it’s back on track. Save the cheerleader, save the world! Can’t resist this one either; ZelebAir’s viewing figures are shockingly bad. It’s official – it’s a flop.
Today I am mostly hatin’ – Apologies to those that loved it, but Lost In Austen went out on a damp squib of a final episode. Nice try ITV, but back to the drawing board me’thinks.
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