Some Suggestions For The Brand-New Esquire Network

In an age when television is trying to figure out how to compete with the Internet, and print is struggling to survive at all, you have to love the idea to expand your magazine into a TV channel. Nevertheless, men’s lifestyle publicationEsquire has taken over the Style Network to give you reality shows from Anthony Bourdain and Ryan Seacrest—because you definitely aren’t sick of those guys, right? (It’s actually kind of unfortunate they’re not co-hosting something where contestants have to sing pop songs while preparing crème brûlée.)

Of course, the real mark of Esquire’s success in this venture won’t be programming that features established stars. They’ll need a dash of originality to establish a loyal fan base. To that end, here are a few ideas: what about a show about pants? It’s just that I’ve noticed every man on the cover of Esquire is wearing very nice pants, and it’s made me realize I don’t know much about pants at all—let alone where you get the nice ones. I’d also appreciate a fashion series about attaining the perfect stubble. You know, like Ben Affleck has when he’s not in a movie set in the 1970s.

We’re going to need some babes in there as well: do you really think men’s periodicals are anything but softcore pornography deemed appropriate for the doctor’s waiting room? Maybe an all-nude, all-female revamp of American Gladiators is in order. Or something where they get infrared footage of Kanye West having sex with that one Kardashian lady. But where the network could really shine is in importing those endlessly amusing magazine quizzes. Which NFL All-Star am I? What sort of pick-up artist persona do I have? Give me a meaningless multiple-choice test you take via remote control and I may just have to un-cancel my cable.

The Boy Band That Isn’t One Direction Is Getting a Reality Show

I think The Wanted’s "Glad You Came" is one of the worst pop songs in recent history, and compared to the friendly, clean-cut guys in One Direction, the dudes in the other British boy band of the moment look like the kind of guys from high school who would ruin a lot of reputations and probably get innocent nerds in trouble for cheating on math tests. I mean, one of them might be dating Lindsay Lohan, for Christ’s sake. Do you want to be friends with anyone who might be dating Lindsay Lohan? Who would want to be friends with someone who is probably not very smart and brings his crazy girlfriend around all of the time? Of course, these characters are the perfect candidates for reality television. Thus, E! came calling.

What’s in store for this show, tentatively titled The Wanted Life? Well, one of the dudes is recently single, so there will be a lot of anonymous girls vying for his attention. Also, the network plans to stick them all in a house together, so get ready for some fights and possible homoeroticism! Plus, one of the guys is described as having "a Jekyll and Hyde personality." That seems logical. And maybe some Lindsay Lohan, although that’s a stretch because an E! reality show seems to be below her pay-grade. (Just kidding. Literally nothing is below Lindsay Lohan’s pay-grade.)

Good work, Ryan Seacrest! 

Follow Tyler Coates on Twitter.

‘American Idol’ Deathwatch: Just Die Already

If you asked me before I got on the Internet this morning who the current hosts of American Idol are, I would have guessed 50 Cent, Kim Kardashian and a Hanson brother, with Colin Meloy filling the Ryan Seacrest role. Turns out, though, that Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj are on it now? And some white guy sits between them? (For real: do not attempt to explain to me who that guy is.)

Thing is, the ratings for this season so far are bad: Entertainment Weekly points out that viewership of the premiere dropped 19% from the last season-opener, and apparently the show’s numbers have been plunging since 2008. 2008! That is five whole years of a televisual juggernaut sliding into pop cultural irrelevance. In fairness, I guess The Simpsons is still on.

But if I’m not watching it—never did—and you people aren’t watching it either, then just who are these last 16.2 million American Idolwatchers? When are they going to stop getting in the way of progress, by which I mean Fox freeing up its schedule for some reruns of When Animals Attack!? Stop being selfish. You’ve had your fun laughing at crappy, deluded singers. Why not criticize yourself instead?

Follow Miles Klee on Twitter.

Sacha Baron Cohen On The Ryan Seacrest Urn Dumping

One could reasonably assume that Sacha Baron Cohen was tossed off the property, while dressed as General Aladeen from his movie The Dictator, after he dumped an urn filled with fake ashes all over Ryan Seacrest’s suit on the Academy Awards red carpet. But what happened next? His agents got a scary phone call from the Academy and they even tried to get Martin Scorsese to blackball him.

Cohen explained what happened to Deadline Hollywood in an interview this week:

The Academy did ban me from the awards and I was. In fact the head of the Academy called up my agents and said if I was to turn up within a half a mile of the Academy he would have me arrested by 200 FBI agents.

He also confirms that poor Ryan Seacrest (I can’t believe I just said that) was completely taken aback.

Well, I mean, Ryan Seacrest, was not in on it at all. He was told about an hour beforehand that he would get an interview with me, but he had no idea what was going to happen. He was very excited at the time.

But the most absurd part is when Sacha Baron Cohen revealed that some members of the Academy tried to get Martin Scorsese — his director in Hugo — to denounce him. Which is pretty ridiculous, considering Martin Scorcese is like, BRB, winning all the Oscars, and doesn’t give a shit. Cohen explained:

[I]n terms of ill will, I’m sure there are Academy members that would not want me back. But, no I haven’t received anything negative at this time. At the time they actually threatened Marty (Scorsese) and said that if he didn’t convince me to not turn up, that it would jeopardize the chances of Hugo winning; which is absurd. And by the way Marty responded, “Sacha does what he wants and if you think I can control him, you’re wrong.

Hugo ended up winning five Oscars later that evening … which Cohen presumably watched from at home on his couch.

Contact the author of this post at Jessica.Wakeman@Gmail.com. Follow me on Twitter.

‘American Idol’ Judges Revealed: Nicki Minaj, Keith Urban, Mariah & Randy

Ryan Seacrest tweeted the next panel of American Idol judges just an hour ago and it’s filled with one or two surprises: Nicki Minaj, Keith Urban, Mariah Carey and Randy Jackson. I guess Nicki Minaj’s contract with Pepsi  didn’t keep her off Idol after all.

Everybody knew Mariah would be joining Randy on the cast and rumors of Nicki Minaj and Keith Urban had been circulating through the late summer. But so many other names were up in the air — Nick Jonas, Aretha Franklin, Alanis Morrisette, Kanye West , P. Diddy — that it felt like casting rumors for the 50 Shades Of Grey movie: literally everyone is up for it.

None of these judges are particularly impressive, although I don’t doubt Nicki Minaj will make great TV. But at least American Idol will have one thing over X-Factor judges Britney Spears and Demi Lovato: you can’t really accuse Mariah or Nicki of abusing autotune

Will Beyonce Make a Big Announcement on ‘New Year’s Rockin’ Eve’?

Did Beyonce have the baby? Did she not?  Oh the suspense for baby bump watchers, tabloid addicts and super fans!!! Though America’s leading celebrity couple has yet to confirm the birth, the always-reliable Internet is ablaze with rumors that Beyonce and Jay-Z have had a baby girl named Tiana May Carter.   Could the big announcement be made tonight to herald us into the new year?

Ryan Seacrest confirmed on Thursday night that she will appear in some capacity, via satellite feed or video or more unlikely in person, telling Extra:

"You will see Beyoncé on the show, I can’t tell you too much because they don’t tell me too much, but if you’re a Beyoncé fan — and man, is she looking good these days — you’ll want to see Beyoncé."

He could just be hyping up some sort of pre-recorded message, but there’s really no better opportunity for a baby announcement.  If it does happen, it will be interesting to see where the little one comes in the line-up.  Before or after Justin Bieber?  Post-Lady Gaga or will the baby be a warm-up act? What will Dick Clark say? 

The Ten Laziest Lines in Kim Kardashian’s New Song

Kim Kardashian went on Ryan Seacrest’s radio show today to premiere her new song, “Jam (Turn It Up).” If the title didn’t already give it away, then allow us: It’s bad. But simply referring to the dance track as “bad” would be doing a disservice to other bad things, like James Franco at the Oscars or Charlie Sheen. At least they strive to be bad. If anything, Kardashian’s song is just lazy, from the vocals, to the production, all the way through to the lyrics. Especially the lyrics. Even if the song sounded good (it doesn’t), or was catchy (it’s not), it would have been difficult to appreciate those things with lyrics this dumb. After the jump, the ten laziest lines.

1. “Turn me up, turn me up, turn me turn me turn me up/Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah.” 2. “I’m going out tonight, it’s going down/Headed straight to the front of the line, on the fly/On the floor I can’t stand still/And I’m goin’ to work like I’m paying my bills.” 3. “My whole click’s on the floor/We gon’ party, then party some more.” 4. “Rosé up in the air/Feeling good, feeling great, just got paid.” 5. “Turn it up, so I can rock the night away.” 6. “I’m burn it out tonight, it’s goin down/By live via satellite.” 7. “And all I see is angels in my eyes/Buzz got me way up in the sky.” 8. “DJ here I am/Feeling good, feeling great, just got paid.” 9. “Girls in the building/Fellas in the club/Boys spending money/Girls looking good.” 10. “Celebrate like it’s my birthday/5 more shots of tequila/I’m thirsty.”

So basically, the whole song. Afterwards, Ryan Seacrest said, “I want to be in a convertible right now with that cranked up!” Strange how he left out the whole “driving off a cliff” part.

TwitChange Will Not Change Your Life, But It’s For a Good Cause

There’s an auction going on right now in which you can bid on getting your favorite celebrities to tweet @ you, or re-tweet something you’ve tweeted, or follow you on Twitter. You can choose from a number of celebrities: Justin Bieber, Ryan Seacrest, Ricky Martin, Kim Kardashian, Shaquille O’Neal, and Perez Hilton (yes, Perez is now a celebrity—even my parents recognized him walking down the street). Some auction items, like the Kim Kardashian mega package, are already fetching over $2000. The money goes to aHomeInHaiti.org, a worthy cause indeed. Yet I still don’t understand why anyone would want to spend this much money on the simple act of, let’s be honest, a celebrity’s PR person publicly acknowledging your existence.

Because that’s it, isn’t it? That’s why we tweet and use Facebook, so others will confirm that we do indeed exist. Every @ is a testament to the fact that some other human across the connecto-web acknowledges that you, too, control your carpal-tunneled hands with a synapse-firing brain. We need these confirmations because we sit in front of computers all the time in our underwear, separated by screens from physical life, replacing meaningful relationships with fantasy relationships with well-groomed celebrities.

Enough ranting. It’s a good deal for the charity—essentially they get tons of money in exchange for 10 whole seconds of a celeb’s time—and I hope they raise a lot of cash. Also, it would be pretty cool to have Shaq follow me on Twitter…

Links: Ronnie James Dio is Devil Horn-ing in Heaven; Ryan Seacrest Kisses Girls

● Ronnie James Dio, post-Ozzy lead singer for Black Sabbath and the origination of metal’s “devil horn” hand gesture has died at 67. [NYT] ● The tiny piano prodigy known on the internet for his spirited rendition of Lady Gaga’s “Paparazzi” has signed a deal with Interscope. His name is Greyson Chance; get familiar. [JustJared] ● We’re not as backwards as we seem: America crowned its first-ever Arab American woman as Miss U.S.A. [NYDN]

● Ryan Seacrest dates women? This is a serious question. [Page Six] ● During a late night email fight with a blogger, Steve Jobs offers the world “freedom from porn.” That’s why he can’t sleep! [Gawker] ● The Mountain Goats Will Cure Your Bieber Fever [Buzzfeed]