Monday, January 07, 2008

Cashmere Mafia Vs. Lipstick Jungle - Pilot Reviews

Cashmere Mafia - Pilot (ABC/E!Canada Wednesdays 10pm)
Lipstick Jungle - Original Pilot (NBC Thursdays 10pm starting Feb. 7 2008)

Alright, so which group of ladies will win out in the race to copy the success of Sex and the City. Do we follow Darren Star to Cashmere Mafia or Candace Bushnell to Lipstick Jungle?

Cashmere Mafia stars Lucy Liu (Ally McBeal, Charlie's Angels), Miranda Otto (Lord of the Rings), Frances O'Connor (Mansfield Park), and Bonnie Somerville (Grosse Pointe, Friends, Kitchen Confidential). A combo of movie actresses and young(ish) TV veterans that I like.

Lipstick Jungle stars Brooke Sheilds (Tom Cruise's rival/BFF), Lindsay Price (US Coupling (the not as good one)), and Kim Raver (24, The Nine). Has-beens and show killers. I don't mind Brooke Shields in theory but this is not her comeback. I know people LOVE Kim Raver. I don't. Meanwhile, I hate Lindsay Price in theory but I didn't mind her in Coupling and she was the most likable thing in this pilot, which may not be a good thing.

Point: Cashmere Mafia

Cashmere Mafia has Peter Hermann (Mariska Hargitay's husband/ Broadway/ Soap star, United 93)
Lipstick Jungle has David Alan Basche (United 93)

Point: Cashmere Mafia

Cashmere Mafia's pilot has Tom Everett Scott (That Thing You Do, The Little Dog Laughed) as Lucy Liu's fiance who checks out of the relationship when he can't handle her success.
Lipstick Jungle's has Christopher Wiehl (Love Monkey, Playmakers, J Crew Guy in The Broken Hearts Club) as Brooke Shield's husband who checks out of the relationship when he can't handle her busy schedule because of her success.

Point: Lipstick Jungle because even though both Tom and Christopher are looking a bit older, my heart will always belong to J Crew Guy. Oh wait, they replaced him from the pilot with Paul Blackthorne (The Dresden Files). They just recast the only reason why I liked Lipstick Jungle? I take back my point and hand it to Cashmere Mafia.

Both shows are about "successful" women dealing with work and relationships, blah blah blah...

It's an excuse for high fashion, bitching about men and other women, and showing successful women still having a hard time managing their lives. (Though most of the fashions on last night's Cashmere Mafia pilot was hideous).

Yeah, problem. Seeing young(ish) beautiful successful career women isn't as interesting as it sounds. Part of it is jealousy. Why do I really want to watch someone who has already made it? I don't care that they may have problems. If they are that successful that early, they probably aren't all that interesting anyways since they spent all their time on their careers. It didn't even work for men on Big Shots.

It worked for the ladies on Sex and the City though because their careers were almost an afterthought. Plus, Carrie was poor. She bought expensive shoes but she had money problems. We could relate. Samantha did well but she was older, and Charlotte did okay but she was looking for a man to save her from financial obscurity, and Miranda was a successful lawyer with a mess of a personal life. Nothing was perfect.

The ladies on Cashmere Mafia and Lipstick Jungle? Yes, they create the imperfectness with cheating husbands/boyfriends and bad nannies but it's all just minor. It's hard to care at this point, though I will also say, I didn't think Sex and the City really came into it's own until the second season but at least we did start caring about them early on.

Still, is one better than another? Yes. (Cashmere Mafia was slightly better but I'm talking relatively speaking here). Will I be watching either? Hmm... doubtful but with the lack of new shows because of the writers strike, I may tune in a few times longer just to give them more of a chance. Maybe.

At this point, Cashmere Mafia gets 2.5 stars (**1.2) and the original pilot of Lipstick Jungle gets 1.5 stars (*1/2).

The Cast of Cashmere Mafia:

Lucy Liu

Miranda Otto

Frances O'Connor

Bonnie Somerville

Julian Ovenden

Peter Hermann

The Cast of Lipstick Jungle

Brooke Shields

Kim Raver

Lindsay Price


TV Guy said...

Kinda harsh. I too have seen the pilots for both shows and I can say that Cashmere is much more sophisticated and smart when compared to Lipstick.


Cashmere 3.5/5
Lipstick 3.0/5

Vance said...

hmm.. maybe I was a bit too harsh. CM wasn't BAD, I just found myself bored at times or laughing AT the situations, though that's better than Lipstick where I was laughing AT the ladies.

I think Lipstick came while I was watching every other pilot back in the summer so against Pushing Daisies or Chuck, it felt underwhelming (then again, so did Sarah Chronicles and Bionic Woman and I was right about Bionic Woman).

Cashmere Im hoping gets better because I like the cast and the pedigree, but it needs to get my sympathy a lot faster soon or else I'm out.

kokostiletto said...

haha. look like everybody is waiting for the battle for Cashmere Mafia and Lipstick Jungle. I can't wait! I will love both shows!

Anonymous said...

yea, i haven't seen LP but I don't have high hopes after seeing CM. I just feel too that they are boring and the situations are so unrealistic on CM. Like, all four of them always find time for drinks when they claim to be so busy. And the lesbian relationship is laughable because they never even show it. it's not a relationship at all yet they somehow keep wanting us to believe that it exist. it's such a cliche. as is the rest of the show. too bad.

Anonymous said...

I haven't seen either yet (saving a few episodes on the tivo) but I'm not hearing a lot of encouraging feedback.

Seems CM is the fave, but a lot of people have commented the dialogue isn't that strong. I'll find out this weekend, but hope its not the case!

Anonymous said...

I love love Cashmere Mafia! I haven't really gotten into Lipstick Jungle. The girls don't have style and aren't as great of actors. Brooke Shields belongs on Suddenly Susan...I just don't buy the powerful woman thing.

Anonymous said...

I love the humour of Lipstick Jungle! Sure it's a crappy-chick-night-soap, but it's at least fun to watch...

Never heard of that other show...