'Rosie Live' recap: Welcome to O'Donnell's surreal world

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Live from New York… it was Rosie! Last night marked Rosie O’Donnell’s return to television, and—my ohhh my—it was one of the most surreal shows to flash on my screen in a long time. A glittery Liza Minelli opening the show with a overblown rendition of "City Lights"? Check. Jane Krakowski striptease? Check. Pop-by cameos from Clay Aiken, Rachael Ray, and Harry Connick Jr.? Check, check, check. Literally, a gay old time was had by all. (Honestly, with additional appearances by Ne-Yo, Gloria Estefan, and Kathy Griffin, could the hour of television have been any gay-friendlier?)

And who’s that there in the photo here with a pie on his face? None other than Conan O’Brien—a good sport if I’ve ever seen one. He got pied by—whaddaya know? another NBC star!—a very funny Alec Baldwin, who did a semi-ironic bit where he had to keep talking into Rosie’s mic, which incidentally was attached right by her breasts. A bit like that could have gone into too-randy-for-8 p.m. territory, but I’m happy to report that it was anything but. After all, with this show, Rosie is attempting to get back to those "Queen of Nice" days of yesteryear, after her recent, rage- and politics-fueled stint on The View. With only one mention of politics (her screaming "BARACK OBAMA!" during the monologue), Rosie kept it all rather silly and light-hearted. Which was fitting in the crazy days we live in and, especially, on Thanksgiving eve. Overall, while the show was insanely surreal (remember, Liza was there!), I thorougly enjoyed seeing Rosie back on TV.

As a huge Kathy Griffin fan, my favorite part of the evening was her appearance as Nancy Grace, who was hell bent on taking Rosie to task. I don’t usually see the comedian doing such dolled-up impressions, so that was quite the treat. Can she please be a regular on the show? Or maybe the solution is more installments of Life on the D-List.Or mini installments of D-List during future editions of Rosie Live! Yes, that’s it!

Meanwhile—and not to be Grinch-y—but I sort of despised that overblown, too too closing number. Why’d Rosie need Gloria Estefan to do that weird holiday homage? And dancing desserts? Really? I realize these type of variety shows are supposed to be over-the-top and all, but save some of that camp for round two. Please.

Speaking of what I loved and hated, PopWatchers, what’d you love from Rosie Live last night? What’d you hate? Would you watch something like this weekly? Monthly? Do you think a show like this more about the guests—or about Rosie? Take a break from the leftovers and leave a comment or two!

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Comments (282 total) Add your comment
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  • c webb

    I to admit I loved all except the Ending. I do not really like Gloria Estefan, so I fast forwarded 1xs through it. Other than that it was great fun. Poking fun were she could. All the had a sense of humour, and were great. My favourite part? Well as much as I love Liza Minnelli, and the tapdancing kids, it would have to be: Alannis Morrisette. I have always liked her songs and last night was good.
    I hope we get to see Rosie again doing what she is good at. She is a comedian and a performer. I felt she was lost on The View. She is back. I’ll watch.

  • Tessa

    PLEASE………….MAKE HE/HER GO AWAY

  • Max Frost

    A little too forced and heavy. Rosie looked uncomfortable and distracted. I know this was supposed to be her dream project but it appeared that someone was forcing her into it.If it’s picked up, I can’t say I’d ever watch it again.

  • ks

    I second that!!!!

  • susie

    I have never been so disappointed in any show in my life. Rosie looks like she has been blown up like a Macy’s parade balloon and the show was just terrible. No fun at all. No,I won’t watch again, ever!!!

  • shannon

    awful, just awful. Hope she is done for good.

  • Kate Johnson

    I will NEVER watch Rosie Live again–and I would be very surprised if the Network will let another stinker out of the can after this debacle. Horrible. Horrible. Horrible. I used to watch Rosie when she had her own show–she was funny and fun to watch–no more. She is like the witch in Hansel and Gretel–see all that candy and gingerbread? It covers a spiteful, bitter, nasty human being.

  • Manny

    I loved it! I love Rosie…I hope they make it a weekly show.

  • Jaydeezed

    I couldn’t watch it! I loved her talk show! This was terrible

  • Anonymous

    what a waste of good film!!!

  • Michael

    The show was a flashback to when TV shows were more light hearted and simple. It was entertaining but I’m worried that most Americans aren’t interested in this kind of variety show anymore.
    I do have to admit, I think Rosie is better to use her talent in political discussions. I think America needs a woman to speak up and challenge what the government has been feeding us for the last 8 years. Rosie made “The View” worth watching.

  • anne-marie

    I don’t think the show was that good. I don’t think I can watch another one like that. I hate reality tv shows and for that I don’t watch tv other than the cooking shows and the travel channel. I want entertaining shows back on tv! but this one was not one that I want to watch again. it will have to change and be more realistic.

  • Laura

    I like it overall…but I think it needs to be tweeked a little.

  • josher

    I love Rosie, buy that was one hot mess! Very, very disappointing.

  • Troy

    This wasn’t a variety show. This was a circus. The kind that ends in a horrible tent fire killing thousands. It was tragedy.

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