Meet the Man Band: There's Chris Kirkpatrick from *NSYNC, who was once mop-topped with a devilish grin, and is now a drunk scary frat boy with dead eyes. Then there's 98 Degrees's Jeff Timmons, who is now...identical to himself. Way back when Brenda was prettier than Kelly, we had Color Me Badd, whose Bryan Abrams seemed likely to sex you up with or without consent, and who has grown very large and now blocks out the sun. And finally, there's LFO's illiterate Rich Cronin, whose face is doing a Cojocaru but used to look creepy in a different way.
"Can lightning strike twice?" asks a bewildered voice. Or will something happen? No, and no. There's a long preview segment of the whole season to get us all excited, and let me tell you: the nothing that happens tonight will be eclipsed by much more nothing in the weeks to come. Leukemia, alcoholism, infighting, sexism, brawls, smuggling, forgery, kidnapping, betting with money, cruising past stoplights, being in the pool after 10 PM, homicide, replacing the Brita pitcher without refilling it: none of these things will happen.
Chris futzes around his house in -- you guessed it -- Orlando, putting up posters of all the Boy Bands. Even LFO! That's nice of him. He keeps saying something "sparks" him "into" something but I'm not clear on the concept, and I reject it. He wants to get his feet wet, and his hands dirty. He wants to mix metaphors like he was Spinderella. They show a clip of the "Bye Bye Bye" video, which makes me smile from ear to ear for two reasons: one is my long-lost friend John Behlman, who taught me that dance one summer, and the second is the fact that I did that dance onstage at the Alamo Drafthouse after drinking two entire bottles of wine, to thunderous applause. Or so I am told.
Chris says that he was basically left with his thumb in his ear once JT and JC left to make their very good albums, Joey went off to be unspecified-famous, and Lance disappeared to be an astronaut. So he drank a lot, and that was his activity. It was not low-carb. That's not the saddest part. He laughs about how he's an alcoholic but admits -- and this is terribly sad -- that he really only throws parties so that he will have friends. But that's not the saddest part either, the saddest part is that he pins his drinking -- and he could be right for all we know -- on how he misses being on tour with *NSYNC. Which is why child actors are fucked, basically: that's all he knew, so now he knows nothing. Then there is a shot of him being so gross and fat and sweaty in a hot tub that I shed all my sympathy like so many unwanted pounds.