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Finales, Finales, Finales: Part 2
June 1

Also available as a podcast. Click to listen!

We start this time around with the “Celebrity Apprentice” finale this past Sunday. Bret Michaels was “hired” by Donald Trump and won the $250,000 Grand Prize for his charity, The American Diabetes Association. Snapple matched the Grand Prize for the Holly Rod Foundation, the charity which Holly Robinson Peete was playing for. Her foundation deals with autistic children, trying to find a cure for autism and services for families with autistic children.

The finale dealt with Bret and Holly designing a new flavor of Snapple. They had to produce the flavor, shoot a commercial and present it to an audience including Snapple executives and the Donald. After watching both presentations and commercials, I believe Bret legitimately did a better job than Holly did. By the way, both Bret’s flavor, Trop-a-Rocka Diet Snapple and Holly’s Compassionberry Tea are in stores now.

This year finale was a love fest worthy of Woodstock compared to the war between Annie Duke and Joan Rivers. Bret Michaels made an appearance, and he looked a little frail. He either is stupid, has a big set of cojones, or maybe it was a little bit of both.

Did Bret Michaels “win” because of the sympathy vote? Probably. But I do not believe it was the only factor in Trump’s decision. Bret DID do the better job in the Snapple challenge and I thought he deserved to win. There was no way that Trump was going to “fire” Bret Michaels. He would have looked like a total, unfeeling ass. That wasn’t going to happen.

The Apprentice will be back with 2 editions with the fall edition being “real people” getting back to work and in the Spring of 2011 we will have Celebrity Apprentice 4.

A quick trip to the ballroom shows Nicole Scherzinger winning the 10th Edition of Dancing with the Stars besting Erin Andrews and Evan Lycasek. The ending was pretty obvious, as Nicole’s training in the Pussycat Dolls gave her a distinct advantage.

I have to give it up to the production staff of the show. While it didn’t attract people like me, the ratings for the show were huge. The casting was spot on, and I can’t wait to see who they will get next. Some people who would be fun in a train wreck sort of way include Betty White and David Hasselhoff. Let’s see who they get before the 11th Season Premiere on September 20th.

On to the American Idol final and as I predicted here last week, Lee Dewyze was crowned American Idol over runner-up Crystal Bowersox. It did not matter that Crystal’s three performances of “Me and Bobby McGee”, “Black Velvet” and “Up To The Mountain” blew Lee’s performances of “The Boxer”, “Everybody Hurts” and “Beautiful Day” out of the water.

In a prediction column on Wednesday, I stupidly changed my mind thinking that talent would win out over good looks and a guitar. I should have stuck to my guns.

For the last two seasons, good looks and a guitar have outweighed pure and real talent. The pre-teen girls, teenage girls and women are more concerned with looks than talent. That’s why Casey James finished in third and Lee won.

The finale show was a love letter to Simon Cowell. The big question is...who will be his replacement? That is something the Block Party will follow and comment on.

Block Party Quick Hits:

--TV Pioneer Art Linkletter dies at 97.

--The 12th Season of Big Brother begins July 8th.

--Survivor Colby Donaldson will host “Top Shot” on June 6th.

--Oxygen preps for the “Dance Your Ass Off” tour to promote heart health and the American Heart Association.

--Bret Michaels makes an appearance on the American Idol finale show and plans to correct his heart with surgery this fall.

--Paula Abdul is returning to the judges table as part of a new primetime talent competition series on CBS. Abdul will serve as the lead judge, executive producer, creative partner, mentor and coach on "Got to Dance," a series from Shine Group/Reveille that's based on a UK hit. The competition show is billed as broadcast's first all-ages all-genres dance series -- "from ballroom to break dance, bhangra to ballet, and tap to tango." A wide variety of acts will compete for a panel of judges, with viewers getting to vote for their favorites during the semifinals and finals.

--Cupcake Wars starts June 15th on the Food Network.

--Kara Dioguardi becomes a weekend DJ in Los Angeles.

--In another upfront news item, Univision is producing two reality shows: The first is "Mira Quien Baila" ("Look Who's Dancing"), a dance competition produced in conjunction with Endemol, and the other is "Desafio: La Gran Batalla" ("The Challenge: The Big Battle"), modeled on the CBS hit “Survivor” and produced in conjunction with BETV.

--Design Star returns for Season 5 on June 13th on HGTV. This will be the first season that Mark Burnett Productions will helm the show.

--Six Minds, formerly known as “The Six” is casting. To apply for Six Minds, call the casting hotline at 323-785-2119, or send an e-mail to 6mindscasting@gmail.com. Keep in mind that the casting call says they're looking for "teams of six," even though the premise of the show was said to be that the teams are made up of strangers.

--Nigeria launches a sports version of “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire”

--Gordon Ramsay says, ““I don’t think chefs should be fat,” Ramsay yesterday told a radio station in South Africa, where he is the star attraction at a food and wine show. The New York Post reported the comments. “It’s just not a good advert[isement],” he said of fat chefs — suggesting that the chef and his kitchen are out of control. “Nothing worse when you’re going out for lunch or dinner, and out comes the [overweight] chef. They fold their arms, sweating over the table and they ask that dreaded question: ‘What do you think of my food?’

--And Chris Daughtry and his wife are expecting twins.

Jason Block's season is over, but he'll be back in the summer. E-mail him at jiblock@yahoo.com.