Monday, January 09, 2006

No man's Monday

I'm not a huge sports fan but I get a little anxious about this time of year when Monday Night Football goes off the air. There is something reassuring about turning the old TV to ABC at 9 PM and hearing the words: "Are you ready for some football?" Even if the game is crap, Al Michaels and John Madden will entertain and (in Madden's case) mystify us with their arcane knowledge about the venerable game of football. Next Monday, the television equivalent of Methadone, the fifth season of "24" on Fox, will ease the pain of football withdrawl.

But not tonight. Tonight, Monday is reclaimed (if only for this one night) by women - who own TV every other night. ABC is totally abandoning men with a slate of God-awful sitcoms and reality shows. The only show tonight that has any Male-Interest-Quotient, or MIQ, is CBS's CSI Miami and that only because David Caruso is so frigging hilarious as the ultra-cool, sunglass-wearing alpha male, Horatio Caine (you'll never see William Petersen's "Gil Grissom" going all drama queen like Caruso.) If you get HBO you can watch Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel although Gumbel and Horatio Caine are cut from the same cloth (I believe it's silk).

Of course, the big fear many of us have is that when ESPN takes over Monday Night Football in the fall it won't be the same. Nobody is saying whether Michaels and Madden will be back in the booth, whether Hank Williams Jr. will open the show or whether ESPN will just pander to their base audience and make it a straight "sports" show. ESPN never seems to remember that the "E" in ESPN stands for "Entertainment". Oh well, we'll survive. We survived Dennis Miller didn't we?

In the meantime, Jack Bauer will make us all forget that tomorrow is Tuesday.


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