If all you've ever wanted is to look as cool as Don Draper, here's your chance. Brooks Brothers has unveiled introduced a Mad Men Edition Suit just like the one Don wears on on the show. The work of Mad Men's costume designer Janie Bryant, it's offered made of a grey sharkskin fabric. The two-button jacket features narrow lapels, diagonal pockets and side vents. It's very similar to a design Brooks Brothers introduced in 1961. The price, however, is rather 2009ish: $998.
Trauma, NBC's loud and incomprehensible new medical drama, has been give the last rites. The network will air keep airing the show into December, but the 13 episodes already ordered will be all, period. Console yourself with the knowledge that Scrubs, which is moving from NBC to ABC this season, will debut on Dec. 1.
Let's be clear here: I am not saying FX's new sitcom The League isn't funny. I'm just saying it's not for everybody. If you're sensitive about deviant sex, for instance -- or even normal sex, if it's had in restaurant restrooms -- you might want to give the show a pass. If drug use to the point of catatonia seems inappropriate as a springboard for humor, you probably shouldn't tune in. If emotional bullying, sexual blackmail and jokes about developmentally challenged puppies offend you -- in short, if you have a shred of human decency -- The League is not for you. Read my full review in Thursday's Miami Herald.
There's a network show that seems to think so -- and no, it's not Glenn Beck or The O'Reilly Factor.
The League (10:30 p.m. Thursday, FX) -- Six infantile guys -- one of them's technically a girl, but clearly was born with the wrong body -- try to escape their tedious lives through a fantasy football league in a relentlessly raunchy new sitcom.
Voces (10 p.m. Sunday, WPBT-PBS 2) -- This showcase of Latino films hosted by Edward James Olmos turns its eye on Cuba with Dream Havana, a documentary about two childhood friends -- one who left the island for Miami, and one who stayed.
American Experience (9 p.m. Monday, WPBT-PBS 2) -- Joe Biden last week said the United States is in a depression. Judge for yourself by watching The 1930s, a five-part American Experience look at life in the Great Depression. First up: an episode on the stock market
crash of 1929.
Note: Days and times for PBS shows are for the Miami area, and may differ elsewhere.
Let Miami Herald TV critic Glenn Garvin program your TiVo! Just click on his best bets for the week at www.tivo.com/guruguide.
NBC has picked up full seasons of sitcoms Parks & Recreation and Community, as well as drama Mercy, says the Hollywood Reporter. Notably absent from the list: the loud and incomprehensible medical drama Trauma. So maybe there's still hope NBC will sell its time slot to K-tel Records for an informercial.
South Florida's massive wave of Medicare fraud is finally starting to get some national attention. On Sunday, in a story largely reported from South Florida (with the help of WFOR-CBS 4's Stephen Stock) 60 Minutes' Steve Kroft looks into what the feds say is gigantic billing scam that might involve as much as $60 billion in thefts. Justice Department prosecutor Kirk Ogrosky says Medicare fraud is the destination for up-and-coming young criminals: "They've figured out that rather than stealing $100,000 or $200,000, they can steal $100 million. We have seen cases in the last six, eight months that involve a couple of guys that if they weren’t stealing from Medicare might be stealing your car."
Naturally, Miami is right in the middle of it. "You know, we were the king of the drugs in the '80s," says Miami FBI agent Brian Waterman. "We're king of healthcare fraud in the '90s and the 2000s."
Fort Lauderdale's AM talk station WFTL-850 has added a new local host: veteran conservative firebreather Jeff Katz. Katz, a former Philadelphia cop, has the 3 to 6 p.m. slot formerly occupied by Joyce Kaufmann. (Her show has moved to the noon to 3 p.m. slot.)
Katz comes to South Florida from Charlotte, N.C., where he was fired last year when his ratings slipped. (He was also fired from a station in Sacramento in 1996 for a very different reason: He suggested that drivers who run over illegal immigrants should be awarded sombrero bumper stickers that could be redeemed for a meal at Taco Bell.) But Katz has lots of fans in the industry: Talkers Magazine has several times ranked him as one of the 100 most important talk jocks in America, and Radio & Records readers once voted him one of the five best local hosts in the country.
Bill and Betty Garcia moved from New York City to Charlotte, N.C., so their sons could grow up away from the grind and grime of urban life. Now they think they made a mistake: ``The boys might have lost a vital connection to their Latino roots.'' So the Garcias take the kids back to New York once a year to reestablish their ethnicity, which, according to their parents, they do by playing basketball (which was invented in Kansas) and listening to hip-hop music (which was invented by Jamaican immigrants in New York City).
The Garcias' puzzling definition of "Latin roots'' is just one small part of CNN's massive Latino in America, a sprawling four-hour documentary that debuts Wednesday. (The second two-hour episode airs Thursday.) But it encapsulates the confusion and indirection of a program that is often interesting, sometimes heartbreaking, occasionally charming and frequently irritating. Read my full review of Latino in America as well as another new program examining a large U.S. subculture, Showtime's life-inside-a-gun-shop reality program Lock 'N Load, in Wednesday's Miami Herald.
It's not exactly about television, but ...
What I admire about the National Football League is the constant pace of innovation. Instant replay. The zone blitz. The Wildcat offense. And now, at long last, standards for NFL owners.
This last one was invented just last week, when the league pressured a group trying to buy the St. Louis Rams to drop conservative talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh from its ranks for what NFL commissioner Roger Goodell called ``divisive'' and ``negative'' commentary. ``We are all held to a higher standard here,'' Goodell added.
Presumably Goodell was using the phrase higher standard with a certain flexibility, since the NFL counts any number of rapists, cokeheads and serial dog-torturers among its players. But let's be fair: Those are players. There are a very limited number of guys who can thread a ball 50 yards downfield through two defensive backs to a wide receiver, so you don't want to set the behavioral bar too high.
But Goodell has apparently realized that the world is full of half-wit millionaires willing to spend a fortune in order to hang around locker rooms sniffing jocks, so the league can afford to be somewhat choosy. Read my op-ed column in Tuesday's Miami Herald for the new rules governing the behavior of NFL owners.