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Shaq Vs. – Rating: C

Submitted by on August 24, 2009 – 3:53 PMNo Comment
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It must be tough for someone who has lived in the limelight for the last 20 years, from high school and college stardom into the professional arena, to realize that his/ her time in the limelight is almost done.  To be watched and adored by millions for so long to all of a sudden become just another one of the unwashed masses must be a shock to the system (those poor millionaires).

Reality television has been the vehicle by which many soon to be former celebrities have extended their stay in the limelight.  The human train wreck, Dennis Rodman, has appeared on a number of shows; Dancing with the Stars has allowed Emmitt Smith, Jerry Rice, and Evander Holyfield the opportunity to show off some fancy footwork; college star and NFL dud Jesse Palmer tried to find love (from anyone).

Shaq_Vs.Last Tuesday, we saw another in a long line of celebrity athlete reality shows to assault our televisions in Shaq Vs., a show that pits the giant basketball star in contests against a variety of greats in other sports (the pilot episode had him play football against Pittsburgh Steeler quarterback Ben Roethlisberger).

There isn’t much too really say about the show.  Anyone that knows anything about sports knows that there is no way in hell that someone that has little to no experience in a sport will be able to match up against one of the best in that respective sport.  What this show banks off of is the personality of the over-the-top center.  Whether you like Shaq or not the former actor and musician is charismatic and entertaining.  He has no problem acting like a cocky, arrogant fool in order to entertain the masses either.

I hate to admit it, but the show is not bad.  Shaq is entertaining and if Roethlisberger is any indication his competition will be playing to the camera as well (after all they will not exactly be strangers to the limelight either).  They are no strangers to the camera and know how to act once the green light is on too.

However, it has no business being on prime time television.  This, like the version of the Superstars that ABC also broadcast, is reminiscent of programming that use to be played during the afternoons in the summer.  Baseball was typically the only sport on television at that time and people were jonesing for something featuring their favorite gridiron personalities.  It was not good television, but for the middle of the afternoon during the summer when there was nothing else on it was okay.

If this is where television is going, I would like to suggest a few shows that the average viewer may find interesting:

  • The T.O. Show will change its name to match another VH1 faux celebrity vehicle The Surreal Life as egomaniac Terrell Owens gives up trying to portray himself as a regular guy and fully embraces his inner *sshole; why try to find love with one person (other than himself) when he can have the co-ed and the Victoria Secret model that likes to pay for everything?

  • Locked Up: Plaxico will broadcast the trials and tribulations of the former star wide receiver as he has to deal with being made fun of for shooting himself in the leg by real convicted criminals; the pilot episode will feature two lifers deciding whose b*tch Plaxico will be.
  • Mean Machine will follow the journey of Michael Vick returning to prison after getting busted for organizing a cock fighting ring to lead fellow inmates Donte Stallworth, Plaxico Burress, and Travis Henry to victory over a team made up of prison guards; Burt Reynolds and Adam Sandler will host the show with convicted murderer Rae Caruth in the role as Caretaker and Jose Canseco to play Unger.  In season two O.J. Simpson tries to join the team only to get shanked by Maurice Clarett and Lawrence Phillips.

  • Tool Academy: Pro Sports Wilt Chamberlin hosts this show that hopes to teach pro athletes how to act in public as well as how to respect women; tentatively set to compete are Kobe Bryant, Ben Roethlisberger, Marshawn Lynch, Chris Henry, Michael Irvin and former members of the Duke Lacrosse team.

Beer Pairing: Any domestic American beer; like the show there is nothing unique about them but they will do when you don’t have anything better