Crunch time

Jackie Warner, above, the lesbian trainer whose reality series Working Out certainly counts as one of the most artificial and transparently banal of its type, is back on Bravo in a format that better suits her — or at least my tolerance for Warner’s brand of faux toughness. Rather than watching her battle with her equally annoying Russian girlfriend, or acting as if she’s the most important woman in Hollywood, she’s doing what a trainer should do: Train clients.
Thintervention is The Biggest Loser conducted by surprise. Warner takes on eight clients, including a mother and daughter and a gay guy who says he and his partner are “the hottie and the hippo,” getting them to change their diets and reach their exercise goals. The surprise comes as Warner makes unannounced ambush calls on the clients, barging into their homes and throwing out high-fat foods and shaming them into losing pounds and inches.

As weight-loss shows go — and with Loser, Dance Your Ass Off, Celebrity Fit Club and more, there are an astonishing number of them on TV — Thintervention has the Bravo touch, meaning it’s as much about the host as the contestants. But as just one more in a glut of series, this is buoyed more by the presence of Warner’s super-buff gay trainer Craig Ramsay than Warner herself. Still, we’ll take what we can get.

Grade: C+

— Arnold Wayne Jones

Dancing with the Stars announced its newest lineup of second-tier celebs hoping to waltz away with top honors. The most interesting of the bunch are comic and gay fave Margaret Cho, who is having a busy year with a new album and tour, Bristol Palin and Jersey Shore’s Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino. How will Cho interact with Palin?  More important, how much more cut will The Situation’s abs get with all that intense cardio?

The rest of the lineup includes Michael Bolton, Florence Henderson, David Hasselhoff and Brandy. And we’ll find out if baby is put into a corner with Dirty Dancing’s Jennifer Grey in the mix.

— Rich Lopez

Thintervention premieres Sep. 6 at 9 p.m. on Bravo. DWTS premieres Sep. 20 at 7 p.m on ABC.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 3, 2010.

—  Michael Stephens