5. Mark Addy as Bill Miller in Still Standing (2002 – 2006)
Judi might actually disown me for finally admitting IN PRINT that I actually enjoy this show TO A DEGREE! (Judi’s note: Oh, my God) I admit that it doesn’t provide the greatest television experience of my life, but it’s entertaining, sort of funny and (don’t punch me) well-written. The premise is a blatant rip-off of Roseanne yet I still don’t hate it. The Miller family are “average” Americans and Still Standing is an average sitcom. It’s funny, though, because the parents are derelicts and their children are somewhat functional, intelligent and usually make good choices, at least the eldest two. The youngest daughter is about as smart as a pear and shaped like one too. Now, you might (not) remember Mark Addy from The Full Monty, a 1997 film about six IRISH unemployed steal workers who develop a striptease act to supplement their now non-existent income. So, I ask you, what WORSE person to play an “average” ALL-AMERICAN DAD than a mildly overweight Irishman? Like, not Irish like the Penn family is Irish, Irish like leprechauns are Irish! UGH. Not that the show is otherwise WONDERFUL, but it would really help if I wasn’t supposed to believe that this smiling Irish bastard grew up in the suburbs of Chicago, loving Bears football, domestic beer and making fun of his potentially gay son. SHOULD HAVE CAST: Jim Belushi
4. Bebe Neuwirth as A.D.A. Tracey Kibre in Law & Order: Trial by Jury (2005 – 2006)
Look, I like Bebe as much as the next guy, more probably, but what the hell is she doing in a Law & Order spin-off? And it doesn’t help that this one was AWFUL. I understand that the show is called Law AND Order, but I really only watch any of them for the police portion. When they enter the courtroom, I like to enter a couch coma. Back to Bebe. Yes, I believe that she is the type of actress who can portray an extremely intelligent woman with a professional career. HOWEVER, I don’t believe that she is going to be defending bourgeois criminals in a NYC court of law. If the show was called Harvard Environmental Law Professors THEN I might buy it. SHOULD HAVE CAST: It’s already a spin-off so why not just give Angie Harmon her own show? A.D.A. Abbie Carmichael could finally stop playing second fiddle to Jack “Knowitall” McCoy and I wouldn’t have to wonder where Kelsey Grammer was for an hour.
3. Kelly Ripa as Faith Fairfield in Hope & Faith (2003 – 2006)
First of all, I cannot believe that this show lasted three years. I think it speaks volumes about American affinity for low-brow humor but I digress. This show is about two sisters who took different paths in life. Hope chose to go suburban and raise a family and Faith became a daytime soap star (not unlike Kelly Ripa). Hope (not Faith) is played by an American treasure, Faith Ford, who is best known for her role as perky Corky Sherwood, the pageant queen on Murphy Brown. She’s funny (to a point) and adorable (to a point) and, in my personal opinion, a fairly decent actress. Basically, she’s perfect for a zany family sitcom. So why did they have to cast Ripa? Isn’t it bad enough that she’s on the television screen for an ENTIRE hour every morning? Plus like 20 commercials where she’s peddling banks and other wares with “Reg.” I tried. I really tried to like this show. I owed it to Faith Ford but I really couldn’t bring myself to watch Kelly Ripa “act” for more than nine seconds. She’s like that friend that you have who is really cute and thin, but every time she tells a story you go deaf for a minute because everything she says makes you die a little inside, be it because it’s so uninteresting or tragically stupid and anytime you ask yourself why you’re friends with her, the best you can come up with is because “she’s cute and thin, she can’t be that terrible.” WELL SHE IS! Get a fat funny friend already and cut that bitch out your life! SHOULD HAVE CAST: Dedee Pfieffer.
2. Andrew McCarthy as Joe Bennett on Lipstick Jungle (2008 – 2009)
I still haven’t decided if I liked this show or not. Oh well, it’s canceled now, probably in part because of the casting atrocity that was Andrew McCarthy. As a fan of all things 80’s, I applaud any appearance, anywhere, by any member of the Brat Pack but SERIOUSLY? McCarthy plays the love interest of fashion designer Victory Ford (Lindsay Price, whom you might remember from Beverly Hills, 90210). She’s about 30, he’s about 45. Not a big deal as he’s RICH as shit. Now, herein lies the problem. First of all, Victory is, like, really attractive and mildly successful, albeit somewhat broke. Still, she constantly rejects his monetary offerings so a gold digger she’s not. What is it then that she is attracted to? His awkwardly-aged teen idol face? His minute stature? His half side mouth smile and partial wink after every phrase he utters? His eversmugness? The constant pursing of his lips? Why didn’t they just call his character Blane McDonnagh because that’s who he is, all grown up! Still, Andrew McCarthy just can’t pull it off. He’s too meek looking and too small in stature to ever be a believable ruthless bazillionaire businessman and no guy that feminine could ever be a jerky boyfriend. SHOULD HAVE CAST: More attractive, more masculine, taller member of the Brat Pack, Rob Lowe.
Note: Clips were limited, please ignore the final 80% of this video, which began as a scene and transformed into a fan video.
1. Gabrielle Carteris as Andrea Zuckerman on Beverly Hills, 90210 (1990 – 1995)
Look, I’ve got nothing against Andrea and nothing against Gabrielle but who casts an OBVIOUSLY 30 YEAR OLD WOMAN as a high-school junior? No wonder she was always doing mature and nerdy shit. SHE’S 30 for crying out loud! Seriously, Carteris graduated from Sarah Lawrence in 1983. She had the lamest story lines of the entire gang and even when I was supposed to feel sorry for her like when her own mother couldn’t participate in the mother/daughter fashion show, I couldn’t because I couldn’t wrap my head around why this grown-ass woman would be crying over such petty shit. Fine, fine, let’s slap some wire rims and a sassy perm on this girl, she’ll pass for 16. NO, SHE DOESN’T. I’m pretty sure the only reason Kelly and Brenda were willing to spend any time with her is because she could purchase alcohol. I LOVE when they get to college and instead of sending Andrea off to Yale where she belonged, she stayed in California and got impregnated by a med student. It was around this time that producers must have been like, “Dude, she seriously looks menopausal, knock her up and write her out.” SHOULD HAVE CAST: ANYONE born after 1975.