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Ya Did Good, Rock

May 6, 2008 - Wes Burns
Television has the ability to bring together the diverse and wonderful landscape of the American populous. No other medium could possess the power that television wields. Television has shown us the pinnacles and depths of living in the twentieth century: the moon walk, the fall of the Berlin wall, the last episode of M*A*S*H (why did Mulcahy go deaf? What was that for?) Television can show us the great things that mankind can do; it can also pull back the veil of platitudes and pretension to lay bare the stark, pale manner in which man is wolf to man. I'm talking, of course, about “Rocky LaPorte”.

A few days ago I had the unique misfortune of attending what I'm going to laughably refer to as a “screening” of a new sitcom, “Rocky LaPorte”. A friend of mine, unbeknownst to her, had been placed on a mailing list to become a test audience for an unidentified new program. Anticipating a program so wretched as to violate the Geneva Convention she called myself and a few others to watch.

When we first put the DVD in we all had certain expectations: some thought that the program would be an infomercial, some thought an unaired pilot, while others thought that the entire endeavor was an elaborate ruse to confuse us into buying full seasons of “The Hills” of DVD. Before any of our predictions could be verified the monotone voice of the DVD menu told us to first confirm that fact that we were indeed watching the program on Sunday night. While we (read: audience) were waiting with bated breath to see this new landmark television show and all we are met with is a DVD asking us questions?

Now I may not be the most technologically adept person that I know but I'm pretty sure that a regular DVD player cannot write information to a DVD so ensuring that we “use the remote to record what hour, day, and month you are watching this program” seems like an empty gesture.

With the pedantic approval process aside it was time for the main attraction. As a man not prone to exaggeration I can say without reservation that within the span of the opening credits it was clear that this show was going to be awful. Meet Rock LaPorte. He's the prototypical blue collar man with a genius but socially awkward son and sassy teenage daughter. The family is balanced by Rocky's wife who may or may not have had a job/name. Rocky and his family clearly live in a gigantic house but spend the entire show talking about their limited income.

Rocky, upon finding out that he needs an anniversary present BY TOMORROW (uh-oh!) enlists the help of his buddy find a gift. Rocky's friend works as a social director at a nursing home and spends most of his on camera time flirting with the residents. (woooo!) They go to a jewelry store where they buy a cubic zirconia the size of the Hope diamond (Ha-Ha-Ha!) then Rocky's daughter tells him that diamonds that big costs thousands of dollars. (whoaaa!) Rocky's wife then comes home and gives him her anniversary present which is Bears season tickets. (awww!)

Side Note: Never been to an NFL game but I'm pretty sure for such a large and dedicated fan base as the Bears' their season tickets package would consist of more than a single, paper ticket. Just a worthless effort, prop department.

Rocky tries to give the gaudy ring to his wife and she tells him that, since he tried, quote: “ya did good, Rock” He most certainly did not.

If this DVD finds it's way into your mailbox do yourself, your family, friends, neighbors, the Bears football organization and the good people of the city of Chicago a favor and throw it out. Or YouTube; always an option.


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