'The Catalina' Premiere Review: Sex, Booze and a Russian Baby Killer
Tuesday, May 29, 2012
The Catalina, the CW's new reality series about the hot young
staff of a Miami hotel, is one of the most entertaining displays of
utter human depravity I've ever seen. Sure, these people all seem like
tragically awful human beings, but no one seems to care because they're
always drunk and having a good time. It also helps that it features
Morgan, who is the single greatest reality star I've seen in a long
The tone of The Catalina is set early on by the hotel's owner, Nathan, a man-child whose only goal is to make this hotel the ultimate party palace. He's the kind of guy who has no problem getting drunk with his staff and spraying his guests with champagne. By any account he should be absolutely ashamed of himself, but he seems to have had that part of his brain permanently removed.
Nathan's second-in-command is Stephanie, who has the thankless task of actually making sure thing are running smoothly. Basically she has to come in and clean up Nathan's messes, scolding the employees like her children and playing Bad Cop every time.
The raucous, sex-fueled attitude of the show comes primarily from the pool bartenders. Kris and Nancy are a former couple, primarily because he's a man-whore who will flirt with anything in a skirt. That list includes Vicky, one of the front desk girls, which brings out Nancy's jealous streak.
The new bartender is David, a party animal whose only employable skills are flirting, drinking and pretending that a hose is his penis. The girls on this show think that makes him the funniest guy in the world, which shows you where their intelligence level is at.
If it sounds like I'm condemning The Catalina, I'm not. The show seems to know that it's a morally bankrupt cesspool of sex and alcoholism. I think that might actually be in the hotel's brochure.
What turns The Catalina from a guilty pleasure into a genuinely glorious reality show is Morgan, the Polish restaurant manager whose broken English is topped only by her ball-busting, no-nonsense approach to life. She doesn't suffer fools, so working at this particular hotel makes her a masochist.
Morgan's is aided by her own bartender, the Israeli bisexual Eyal (or as Nathan calls him, Gayal, which I'm pretty sure he could be sued for). Morgan and Eyal have a wonderfully off-beat relationship: She loves yelling at people and he seems to be able to take it.
Morgan, in particular, is destined for greatness. Here's just a sample of her best lines from the premiere, and I suspect every week her frankness, hatred for Nathan's partying ways and fractured command of the English language will result in the highlights of the show.
"My employees are all very stupid."
"They call me Russian Baby Killer, which is absurd because I don't like Russians. I hate Russians and Germans. The French are not my favorite either."
"Staff meetings are totally pointless. All I've been presented with was the idea of to buy things. And do you know how hard it is to buy things that you don't know what the things are?"
What did you think of The Catalina? Are you wiling to spend the rest of the summer watching these party animals as they live out Nathan's depraved fantasies and drunken debauchery? Or are you already bored with the hotel's "very stupid" employees?
(Image courtesy of the CW)