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American Chopper: Senior vs. Junior: Winners and Losers

13 Feb

February 14, 2012

Last time we saw American Chopper, Paul Senior got his ass kicked in the three-way build-off between Sr., Jr., and Jesse James. Why did he lose? Because his trained pet Jason designed something that was anything but a motorcycle. Smart move for a company that builds motorcycles.

What’s on tap for this new season kick-off?

In the aftermath Chopper Live, Junior celebrates his win while fulfilling an order for an overseas client, while Senior focuses on the future with a big build and an even bigger opportunity: a spot on Celebrity Apprentice.

What does this mean? This means a double dose of Paul Senior: The Apprentice on Sunday, American Chopper on Monday. I am going to recap the Apprentice as long as Senior remains unfired, which frankly can’t be long. To put it mildly, he is not a team player.

Here we go.

Less than one-minute in we see Donald Trump shaking Jason Pohl’s hand. This is going to be bad. 

The show opens in the aftermath of the live show at Paul Senior’s house. As usual, he ran down his son’s bike and was impressed with Jesse’s bike. Did you expect anything else?

“I don’t think it made a difference if we made a bike or not… I knew we weren’t going to win.” And then he was sad because he was booed. Tough.

He was also disappointed that he hasn’t heard from Paulie since the hug on the live show. But on the other hand, he’s building a bike for Trump! (Don’t blame me for that, he more or less made that segue himself.)

Paulie went back on local radio, and with all the appearances he makes on that show, I have to wonder what other programming they have. the big DJ pointed out what I am sure we all noticed, that PJD came out en masses, and Senior came out himself. Tells you about his mindset that he came out to represent the bike, which yes, his company built, but he had zero hand in building or designing.

Then we get to see Senior and Jason at Trump Towers. Jason, to give him the merest  modicum of credit, wore a nice suit. Senior wore an old sleeveless t-shirt. That’s class. He looked like an old orangutan in a fancy office. Anyway, Trump is hiring OCC to build a bike and of course, he wants a gold  bike.

Get used to this. Clearly, Senior is giving Jason more and more influence in the shop. Never mind the “meltdown” last season, never mind the complaints from Rick, Senior loves Jason. He went with his design in the build-off, he took him to meet Donald Trump and let him sit at his side, he is going all-in on Jason. during the meeting, Trump flipped through a portfolio of OCC bikes but when he wanted to see more, Jason told him to go look on the web.

Trump is aware that he is on TV, he is aware that he is in a couple of deals with Paul Teutul, so he let it go. You try telling Donald Trump to go to your website and see how well that goes over.

Trump helicoptered up to OCC headquarters and there, Jason showed him his design for the bike, which was branded more or less as you’d expect a Trump bike to be.

Back to PJD, the crew watched a replay of the live show. Jesse James was no less dopey this time around. Paulie watched the clips of the fights, a bit somberly, and looked impassive when he saw himself hug his father. He explained that yes, he loves his father, but he can’t have a relationship when his father acts toward his family as he does. Maybe yes, maybe no, but he hasn’t even tried to talk to the man. If you’ve read this blog before you know I think Senior is almost all to blame, but hey, don’t say you can’t have a relationship without even talking to the guy.

“Paulie worked for me for twenty years and the day I made him a millionaire, he told me to f**k myself.” -Paul Senior to Donald Trump.

Ok, scratch what I said above.

Coming out of commercial, a very sad note: Paul Senior’s mother died. And no matter what else is going on, I’m very sorry for that. She’d been on the show a few times and they showed some clips, including when she met Jorge Posada of the Yankees and called him “George” over and over.

Throughout the show Senior has been having conversations with his wife and I haven’t said much about it since they are obviously staged for the cameras, with the wife just listening as Senior explains what is going on. Staged.

And then the news- Paul Senior is going on The Celebrity Apprentice!

And next, Mikey’s website! Have you gone there? I have not but it has a forum where, he says, people are talking about his father going on The Celebrity Apprentice. What did the scene add? We got to see Mikey in a sport coat.

Do you watch this show for the bikes? We are now 35 minutes in and motorcycle-related programming has been about 5 minutes. But honestly, that isn’t a problem as the people who used to watch for the bikes have left as the show has begun to feature family drama in the forefront.

Back from commercial break and we get  to see OCC building a bike. Sort of. Grainger got a few scant seconds of screen time for their bike. It was already built and all we saw was about 30 seconds of finishing touches. See what I said about the show not being about bikes? We then got to see the bike unveiled and Senior was busy with Trump’s show so who did Senior send? Christian. What, you  expected Jason? Ok, you got me, he sent them both. Christian rode it in, and Jason ran the show. The bike reminded him of “old-school Chicago.” Really?

PJD, on the other hand, is building a bike for a company in Poland and the show gives it similar short shrift.

And after a four-minute segment, another commercial break. Hey Discovery, I cut you some slack when you did that during the live show, you have no excuse here.

(During the break we saw Paulie and Nic Cage shilling for the Ghost Rider movie. Since when does Nic Cage just go by Cage?)

With Senior off on The Apprentice, who was running the shop? I am not sure who was running the office, but Jason was running the meeting in the shop about Trump’s bike. I am telling you, Jason is the heir apparent. Oh no, not someone who knows how to build a motorcycle, someone who can draw a motorcycle.

Memo to American Chopper: less Jason, more Rick.

Back at PJD the bike for the Polish client continued, and for what may be the first time on the show we saw Vinnie’s young son, who is almost two. Cute kid, and Vinnie seems like a nice father.

Then after another short segment, a commercial break, including the commercial for the awful-looking Ghost Rider movie. In the last 15 minutes, the shows and the commercials have been split about 50/50. Honestly, Discovery is getting really annoying.

One last note, at the end of the show we met the Polish client, who can’t speak a word of English. The guy had charisma to spare. He needs to be on every week.

Next Week:

Feb. 20, 2012
Senior deals with the death of his mother and is hurt then he does not hear from Junior or Mikey. Then, while PJD starts a build for One Call Concepts, OCC unveils a gold bike for Donald Trump.

A New York Minute (15)

13 Feb

February 13, 2012

Welcome to your New York Minute. What’s up?

Bruce Wayne once said that “criminals are a cowardly and superstitious lot.” That may or may not be true, but if Batman comics have taught me anything, it is that bad guys love their colorful nicknames. and while New York may not be as overrun with arch-criminals as Gotham City, we do have our fair share of interestingly named villains.

The list of New York City Mob nicknames includes Jimmy the Gent, Vinny the Chin, Benny Eggs, Joe Bananas, Crazy Joe, and even Johnny Cash. And while no one has been called The Joker, New York did boast Louie Ha Ha and his brother Bobby Ha Ha.

One man who would have felt right at home in Gotham City was Dart Man, and that was no silly nickname.

In 1990, at least 53 woman were victims of assault by the mysterious Dart Man.

Dart Man was the alias of Jerome Wright, a resident of the Bronx and a former thief and drug dealer. Mistakenly named Dart Man by the press, he assaulted women by shooing pins or needles from  a quote “straw-like device” at their buttocks. None of the women were seriously injured and after posting $1,000 bail the charges were reduced to misdemeanors. He was only charged in two of the cases, there not being anyone able to identify him the other attacks. Most of the needles never broke skin and there were no substances found on the pins. Although he was found competent to stand trial after a psychiatric examination, no motive was found. However, all of his women had one thing in common: They were all light-skinned women attired in business suits or skirts.

The Dart Man attacks came a few months after a gang of girls were convicted of sticking rich-looking women with pins on Broadway in 1989. Interestingly, those attacks seem to be the source of the urban legend of the pin prick attack.

The legend goes that people were randomly pricking people on the streets or in crowds with HIV contaminated needles and infecting unsuspecting people with AIDS. While the 1989 attacks had zero connection with HIV and the needles were clean, this was near the height of the 1980’s AIDS scare and it is easy to see how this legend took off. The kicker of the legend is that the attacks would take place in clubs or late night movies and the victim would have no idea they had been pricked until they found a note in their pocket or stuck to their clothes saying “welcome to the AIDS club.” For the record, there has not been a single case of anything close to that ever happening, but legends like this and of AIDS Mary persist.

New York has a lot of interesting characters. Sometimes too many.

This has been your New York Minute.

An audio version of this legend recently appeared in the amazing FlashPulp website. Check them out for awesomeness and goodies!

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