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TeeVee Awards '03: George Gray Award

You know, we hated Paige Davis last year. Hated her so much that we gave her our second annual George Gray Award, given to hosts who don't give us anything we want. (George Gray himself won the first annual award, prompting him to write us a nice letter. Of course, if you visit the Junkyard Wars web site you'll see that George is the only one of five ex-hosts to have only lasted a single season. We rest our case, George.)

We hated Paige Davis so much that we didn't even bother to name-check Karyn Bryant for her yeoman work on removing Junkyard Wars from our TiVo Season Passes, a feat not even George Gray accomplished. That's how bad Paige Davis was last year.

This year's winner of the George Gray award is not someone we hate with fiery, we-want-to-bust-your-perky-ass Page Davis hate. No, this award is tinged with pity. Because this year's winner, Alex McLeod, was apparently and inexplicably edited out of the she hosted -- the famed Joe Millionaire -- as much as possible. And this from the woman who hosted Trading Spaces before the heinously perky Paige Davis!

"But wait," you sly TeeVee readers may be saying. "I watched several episodes of Joe Millionaire, and the brains of the operation was that butler!" Indeed, dear reader, Paul Hogan was the breakout star of Joe Millionaire... and the producers apparently realized it. The end result? They pumped up Hogan's role, while reducing McLeod's to mere cameos.

Or to put it another way: Um, that spokesmodel who kept showing up on Joe Millionaire just to introduce Joe and declare that the women would be receiving jewelry as prizes? That wasn't a spokesmodel. That was the freakin' host of the show. At least, before the editor's knife intervened.

Is it Alex McLeod's fault that she was edited out of her own show? Only Alex and the reality TV producers know for sure. When she was onscreen, she was an empty presence, full of inappropriate seriousness and not much else. Hogan, on the other hand, was a hilarious touch. And so Alex McLeod, who probably should've either been used properly or left on the cutting room floor, muscled aside such heavyweight contestants as the godawful Brooke Burke of Dog Eat Dog and the my-eyes-my-eyes-oh-god-my-eyes train wreck known as the second coming of Phil Donahue.

Hey, Alex, look at the bright side: we're probably not going to change the name of our anti-hosting award. Rank hath its privileges, as George Gray would attest.

Additional contributions to this article by: Jason Snell.


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