|This Week's Reader Submission Contest Winner #2: Dave's Pick
posted by Dave on 7/15/01
I have some very fond memories about my childhood. Eating dirt, playing with dolls, tying a rope around my yard to keep the neighbor girl out, you know, all the normal things boys do. I remember waking up at an ungodly hour on Saturday mornings and running downstairs in my footy pajamas just to watch the cartoons. Sadly, things have changed. I cannot catch the early cartoons anymore (read: I'm hung over and trying to get the fat girl I hooked up with last night to leave), so my Saturday morning TV ritual starts a little later. In other words, I get to enjoy the "teen comedies" on NBC, which those brilliant network execs cleverly tout as "TNBC" ("T" stands for "Teen", get it?).
By far, my favorite show on TNBC is "City Guys." The whole "hard-knock school in the middle of New York City" really does it for me. Plus, I almost know the theme song. I think I need professional help.
City Guys, as described by the NBC web site, is "a half-hour comedy series with an edgy and hip look at urban teenage life. A comedy set on the streets and in the schoolyards of New York City, 'City Guys' follows the relationship between friends, led by two teens from two different worlds: Jamal (Wesley Jonathan), a street-smart African-American from Harlem, and Chris (Scott Whyte), a rich white kid from Park Avenue."
Chris, the rich white kid, drives in the fast lane. He likes his cars fast, his liquor hard, and his women, well - Chris is the token homosexual of the group. He had long hair early on in the show, but recently cut it for a more "mature gay yuppie" look.
My heroic flaw is that I'm just too damn straight.
Okay, they try to pass him off as straight, but you can tell he's really a flamer. Just look at him. He is the biggest pansy ever, and he sure doesn't have much going on upstairs for being a lead character. Basically his job is to not get Jamal's wacky plans. But Chris, do you ever really "get it?" His only strong point is that he's in love with Cassidy, the only reason why I watch the show.
Cassidy is a complete moron, or your average girl, whichever you prefer. She plays the part as "the hot one" and plays it rather well. She is somewhat shallow, like most hot girls, but she does try to see "the real person behind the pretty face." (Awww.) One episode has her trying to get the school's "super hippest stud hunk" to go to some dance with her. (They show him fixing his hair a lot, because after all, only shallow guys fix their hair.) Later she realizes that she would rather be with Chris, but he gets some other girl to cover for him. It's just a case of bad timing. What a shame.
I think Cassidy and Chris were dating at some point. Or maybe there has just been "sexual" tension mounting. Now that I think about it, I'm pretty sure Chris has never gotten any from Cassidy. It would require him to act straight, much like Tom Cruise, and we all know that this Scott Whyte fudgepacker is not a good actor.
Jamal is black kid of the group. His job is to act really cool and probably be good at basketball, though I don't remember any particular episode where Jamal plays hoops. Maybe it's because I saw him in "21 Jump Street" a million years ago. It was some TV drama with Kareem Abdul-Jabar. Christ, I'm a loser. Anyway, Jamal works at the diner (a teen show with a diner? Go figure) for his Dad, whom he shoots in one episode. It's actually pretty funny; his Dad walks in the dark diner's front door as Jamal is cleaning up in the back room. Jamal hears a noise and comes out guns blazing, shooting at a figure in the dark, which turns out to be his Dad. Jamal learns a lesson that guns are bad. Isn't that special? As far as the acting goes, Wesley Jonathan is probably the best of the bunch, although it's rather like being the valedictorian of summer school. I'm pretty sure I've seen him on NYPD Blue as an even more stereotypical black kid (i.e. suspected criminal).
Damn it's good to be a ganster.
Most of the episodes revolve around the unlikely relationship between Jamal and Chris. In the beginning, Jamal was jealous of Chris's money, but eventually he discovered he can use the dumb cracker. Like the time Chris and Jamal "borrow" Chris's Dad's Ferrari. You would assume that one of them would have seen "Ferris Bueller's Day Off," but then again, this is TV. Nothing exists outside the world of the characters (see: Saved by the Bell.) Of course, they wreck the car, but by then you've changed the channel so you don't care. The two rapscallions are apparently the DJ's at the school's radio station. I wasn't aware that inner-city high schools had the funding to build radio transmission towers, but hey, this IS New York.
The supporting cast is a group of "quirky" idiots, all designed to make the plots more interesting - and to represent palsies on TV. "Dawn" (Caitlin Mowrey) is the other girl on the show. Not quite as hot as Cassidy, but I'm still holding out for a hot lesbian sex scene between the two.
My hand is on Cassidy's ass. ROFLOL.
Dawn is all about causes: rainforests, whales, whatever. She has about the same amount of personality as a soiled tube sock. Only minus the semen, because Lord knows she's a prude. She recently started dating Al, (Dion Basco) the short, trendy, scheming Asian kid.
Al is your typical short, trendy, scheming Asian kid. He runs around looking for ways to get rich quick, often selling horribly overpriced shit-for-merchandise after telling everyone how "cool" his product is. It usually goes over without a hitch until the principal catches him, or something else happens to teach Al a lesson (a la Saved by the Bell). My favorite episode about Al was when he decides to become a delivery boy. This guy apparently gives Al an expensive bike, and tells Al to deliver various sealed packages all over New York City. Al, being the street-smart kid that he is, delivers faithfully and is soon rewarded with all sorts of gifts from his boss, including a big TV. Now, I'm a suburban white kid, but when my boss starts giving me expensive gifts as reward for DELIVERING PACKAGES, don't you think something is wrong with this picture? Maybe Al can't put two and two together to equal DRUGS, but at the very least his suspicions should be aroused. Yes, Al has been unwittingly running drugs for some dealer. At the end of the episode, the drug dealer gets pissed off because Al stopped delivering for him (Ms. Nobel finally clued the poor bastard into what was really going on.) The drug dealer comes in looking for trouble, but is run off the school grounds by Ms. Nobel and a student mob yelling that they don't want drugs in their school. The drug dealer makes some idle threat that will of course be forgotten in the next episode. Everyone cheers.
I am not smart, THEREFORE BREAKING ASIAN STEREOTYPES. HAHA.
Al's best friend is "El-Train" (Steven Daniel). I'm pretty sure El-Train's character started out as a bully or something, but eventually the crew cast aside the usual high school clique-ishness and accepted him into the group. Awww, what bullshit. El-Train plays the idiot who has one-liners for comic relief. The problem is, he's probably the smartest person in this group of mental abortions. Apparently he's also the student body president. Don't even ask me how he managed to pull that off. El-Train is always supplimenting Al's wild schemes and going "DAAAYYYMM" (actually, I'm sure it's something cleaner like "DAAAANNG") to any hot girl who walks by. Including Ms. Nobel. Yikes.
I have a condom on my head.
Ms. Nobel is the principal. She practices "hard love" or some other such bullshit. Basically, she's there to get the kids in trouble. Hey, at least she has a resemblance of a life outside the school, unlike Mr. Belding. I always remember that woman saying "lake winnipesaukee" in the movie "What About Bob?" Go watch it, it's a funny movie.
I've seen so many episodes of this show; I don't even know which one would be funniest to review. However, since I like alcohol so much, I'll talk about the one where they all decide to get drunk. Apparently the gang gets offered an appearance on a teen talk show to talk about friendship. Why in God's name they would choose this sorry bunch of tools to talk to American teens about friendship is beyond me. Ah, but this show doesn't depict real life, what am I thinking. Anyway, Cassidy's parents are out of town, so the kids decide to get together at her house. Somehow a bottle of tequila shows up and they all get completely shitfaced.
Cassidy, as all girls do when they are drunk, decides it's a good idea to dance with the lamp. Now, I could see this as being viable if the group was dropping acid and shooting heroin, but she had a few drinks. But I lose myself in particulars. After Cassidy's enlightening dance number, she decides to make Chris jealous (I think) by having a make-out session with Jamal. Chris gets pissed and decides to make out with Dawn, who is, GET THIS, Al's girlfriend. Well now the shit is going to hit the fan. Al comes out from some other room with El-Train (hmm) and gets pissed at Dawn. If I remember correctly, Chris and Al are going to rumble and Ms. Nobel (yes, the principal) shows up with her husband/fiance. She sees the empty tequila bottle and figures out what's going on. She gets all pissy and tells them that no one is leaving and that they're all staying there for the night. When the gang wakes up, they're all hungover and remember all the stupid things they did last night. Then they go on the talk show and discuss some bullshit public service message that I don't remember. Oh yeah, Ms. Nobel shows up because El-Train and Al were prank calling her. Good idea, dipshits.
My biggest problem with this episode is the amount of alcohol consumed by the group. Now, at last count, there were 6 people in this group, 4 of which are guys, 3 of which I would consider to be "big" guys. Now, the bottle was obviously 750mL, which is about 25.4 oz. 25.4 oz / 6 people = 4.23 oz per person. Hmm, so you're telling me they got completely blasted out of their minds on a little more than two shots?
I just remembered an episode I saw not that long ago. Ms. Nobel decides that she's tired of this principal from another school always winning the principal of the year awards. So she decides to get a "new attitude" just like that other guy. Apparently, instead of being a hardass, this guy wants to be everyone's friend, therefore making him the obvious choice for principal of the year (He puts the "pal" in...oh fuck it, that joke is gay). Ms. Nobel starts dressing in warm-up suits and speaking in "ebonics" or "jive." She says the word "dilio" a couple times, and definitely says "get down with your bad self" at least once. Speaking of jive, remember that scene in "Airplane" where the old lady says "Excuse me stewardess, I speak jive."? Now that's humor. The next time one of your dumbass friends says something retarded that nobody understands, just say, "Excuse me stewardess, I speak jive" and see how many people in the group get it. Anyway, just imagine this woman trying to speak jive:
Wha's down, dig dis: I wanna win da principal o' da damn yaih' award eva' so's badly. Word.
What ends up happening is that the school goes to pot (and no, not the good kind). Nobody does any work and everyone is shown dancing all the time in school. This is quite a conundrum to me. If you were in school and you suddenly realized that there was no teacher in your class, and that you didn't have to do shit for the rest of the day, would you immediately jump on your desk and start dancing? And where is this music coming from? Does some guy just whip out a boombox and start "gettin' jiggy wit it?" I obviously have much to learn about New York City. It's actually pretty funny, all the nameless extras in the school are dancing around on the school's rooftop while Chris and Jamal walk in bewildered as to what's happening. "What's going on here? Where's Ms. Nobel?" Jesus Christ these kids are such killjoys. Oh yeah, and the school's radio equipment gets ripped off. Thank God we don't have to hear Chris make another lame joke over the air.
I really suggest watching this show on a regular basis. It deals with serious issues that real teens are forced to cope with every day. Seriously, this show is so bad it makes me want to dip my face in lye to end the pain. But it does make me laugh. Plus they have some hot girls. Hot girls are hot. I leave you with a picture of our good friend Scott Whyte doing God-knows-what:
There is a perfectly reasonable explanation for this gerbil up my ass.