Saturday, January 31, 2015

Kathy Griffin revs up 'Fashion Police'

(Jan. 30, PDI Entertainment)
By Oliver M. Pulumbarit

Comedian Kathy Griffin is quickly proving herself a worthy replacement for the late Joan Rivers in E!’s irreverent “Fashion Police” panel of commentators. This comes as no surprise, really; Griffin has talent, gumption and the penchant to speak her mind—no matter the consequences!

The dynamic has changed, of course, and while many may miss Rivers’ more succinct, sharper jabs—the icon made crude or scathing critiques of celebs and their fashion choices with just a few words and a punch line at a time—Griffin brings to the equation her more anecdotal but nonetheless brash and observational brand of humor.

Which isn’t to say that she overshadows her copanelists, Giuliana Rancic and Kelly Osbourne; far from it, and Griffin is generous enough to let them talk just as candidly. Rancic is showing a more pointed wit, and is more verbally vulgar, while Osbourne has been offering surprisingly more mature and wiser assessments of their chosen celebrities’ fashion snapshots.

Another new addition to the panel is fashion stylist Brad Goreski, who manages to give snappy and catty insights, as well. This revamped roster made its debut some weeks back, just in time for the Golden Globe Awards. It wasn’t immediately smooth, but the host-critics found themselves bonding soon enough.

By the second episode, the quartet had become somewhat tighter, and much easier to watch.

Griffin, who previously hosted her own talk show, manages to slam some celebs for what she sees as ill-conceived fashion statements. Some standout “critiques” are her digs at Amal Clooney’s gloves, which have been mentioned by the “D-List” stand-up comic in two episodes. Just for the heck of it, she playfully lambastes an actress she ran into, Patricia Arquette—not because of what she wore, but because she previously told Griffin not to include her in the worst-dressed segment!

No stranger to feuds and controversy, Griffin also jokingly dismisses pop star Rihanna’s dress, the comic admits, because she hopes to start “what you kids call a Twitter war!”

Rivers’ inimitable and distinct comedy is much-missed, but the show is differently funny with Griffin’s addition. And the show remains amusing; nobody is sacred. It’s still an odd platform for smart, sometimes-nonsensical dissections of celebrity couture—and culture.

No comments: