Shows That Should Be Forgotten: ‘Pink Lady and Jeff’
Pink Lady, better known as Pink Lady and Jeff, is a notoriously bad show. It regularly makes it onto Worst TV Shows Ever lists. There is no good excuse NBC can come up with for having produced this train wreck of a show, which put the final nail in the coffin of the already dying variety show genre.
In 1980, NBC President Fred Silverman decided to create the show Pink Lady featuring the Japanese singing group Pink Lady, which had two members: Mie and Kei. He called in Sid and Marty Kroft, who are were known for their surrealist children’s show like H.R. Pufnstuf, to produce the show. Everyone quickly realized Mie and Kie didn’t speak a word of English, so NBC brought in comedian Jeff Altman. This should have been about the time NBC cancelled production of the show, but production went ahead anyway, leaving Mie and Kei to learn their lines and the English-language pop hits performed on the show phonetically with predictably terrible results.
On Pink Lady and Jeff, it is obvious that no one on camera is comfortable. Jeff knowingly tells awful jokes, while Mie and Kie can’t provide a real response because they don’t understand anything, including the words coming out of their mouths, so they just awkwardly laugh, smile, and nod. Throwing Jerry Lewis into the mix somehow manages to make the show worse. (Unfortunately, the video is only viewable on Vimeo’s website, so feel free to click the “Watch on Vimeo” button.)
Since it was clear no one was watching the show for its hilarious comedy, NBC thought that a little T&A would help the ratings. A running gag on the show was having bikini-clad Mie and Kie push the tuxedo wearing Jeff into a hot tub.
Pink Lady and Jeff is not so bad, it’s good. It’s just plain bad. Those who want the whole experience, which is not available online, can buy the complete DVD set of six episodes for the low price of $50. Can’t afford the whole series, but want to know what each episode was like? The Agony Booth has descriptions of every single episode.
Posted on August 2, 2013, in NBC, Network Television, Primetime, Shows That Should Be Forgotten, Variety Shows and tagged bad tv, donny osmond, jeff altman, jerry lewis, mie and kei, nbc, pink lady, pink lady and jeff, singing group, variety show, worst tv show. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.