25 NEW SABC SHOCKERS - IN STAFFERS' OWN WORDS

Thursday, January 14, 2016

REVIEW: The stale return of Fashion Police on E! Entertainment is flat and lackluster, saved only by comedian Margaret Cho's clever oneliners.


The stale return of Fashion Police on E! Entertainment (DStv 124) to cover the 73rd Golden Globe awards felt flat, lackluster and how moderator and brilliant host Joan Rivers would often remark about celebrity rags she simply didn't like: "ugly".

In 2015 Fashion Police reassembled on E! Entertainment with Melissa Rivers, Joan Rivers' daughter, Brad Goreski, Giuliana Rancic and guests Margaret Cho and NeNe Leakes and did about 3 shows - once off specials following award shows and big events.

This week's Fashion Police show - the first of 2016 - was really the big one for the show's TV return, still with Margaret Cho and NeNe Leakes who have both seemingly become the "permanent" guest panelists - and thank goodness for them.

Probably scared off after her controversial "I feel like she smells like patchouli oil. Or weed" comment of Zendaya's hair, Giuliana Rancic now comes across as stilted and scared to say anything remotely offensive, funny or outrageous, while the boring Brad Goreski is far too suck up to Hollywood's designer crowd to not say "I like it" to basically everything.

The heavy lifting to be funny now falls on Nene Leakes who is less successful and the outrageous and more successful Margaret Cho - the only one getting bleeped and gasps like Joan Rivers did.

Melissa Rivers meanwhile comes across as struggling - she's trying to steer and keep the pacing and show on track but on-screen - the role as producer she did from the sidelines when and while Joan Rivers sat in the chair.

Worse than being called bad is that the new, new Fashion Police on E! Entertainment is now bland. Halfway through the hour-long episode I paused my DStv Explora to see how much time is still left of the episode.

The games don't make sense and seem like patchwork, the comments especially from Brad Goreski and Giuliana Rancic are inane, Brad Goreski just talks about designers and shamelessly gush over everything as wonderful, and after three episodes even NeNe Leakes'  trademark barbs, "no, girl" and arm and finger-waving are wearing thin.

It's comedian Margaret Cho who now solely brings the spice and bite to E!'s Fashion Police.

She alone has witty one-liners with shock-induced effect in the way that Joan Rivers did, is the only one getting bleeped out, and who obviously actually worked, practised and prepared beforehand.