4th and Loud: A season in review

4th and loudWhat do you get when you mix football, rock and roll and reality television?  4th and Loud is your answer.

I’ll admit to being slightly intrigued about the possibilities for this show when I first saw the previews and I’m not even a Kiss fan.  I have far too much musical taste.

I’ve been to only one Arena Football League game in my life.  It was years ago on a whim and I immediately regretted it… except for all the bikini tops I saw there.  Don’t get me wrong.  I have nothing against bikinis.  I just don’t go to football games to see them.  One would think the presence of Kiss team owners Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley would increase the bikini factor tenfold.

It did.

I caught a glimpse of one of their games on ESPN.  Their uniforms and off-colored field grabbed my attention.  So I decided to give their show a shot, a fair review even.  With the amount of crap on the tube these days, I wondered if this program could provide entertainment where most reality TV shows, in my mind, do not.

Stanley and SimmonsCould 4th and Loud get me to watch Arena Football?  Could it keep my interest?  Could I tolerate staring at Paul Stanley’s horrible facelift and Gene Simmon’s JewFro one hour at a time?

There was only one way to find out.  I set my DVR to record the show to see if it was at all worthwhile and perhaps save you the trouble of doing so yourselves.

As any good Episode One should, the premier broadcast introduces the main characters and their dedicated efforts to get Team Kiss off the ground.  Not only is their team a business, it is Stanley’s and Simmons’ lifelong brand.  As figureheads, they are more than just financially vested.  They also, however, quite unrealistically want a championship in their first season.  Someone should have informed them Rome was not built in a day.  The season becomes a constant struggle to combine entertainment with a winning football team.

“What we brought to rock and roll is what we want to bring to sport.  This isn’t a Kiss concert.  This is a Kiss mentality.”  If nothing else, Stanley and Simmons know how to build a successful brand.  But could they build a successful sports franchise?

Bob McMillenWe are introduced to Head Coach Bob McMillen, a man with a long record of coaching success in the league.  He does his best to hold his ground when it comes to fielding talent, something which is easier said than done when so much is focused on marketing over substance.

Colt Brennan makes an early appearance.  Remember him?  The Hawaii Heisman hopeful tries to make this team but a 2010 car accident left him with slight brain damage.  Ultimately doctors do not give him a clean bill of health.  JJ Raterink, a league vet, who smacks of Dennis Quaid in the Any Given Sunday, gets the nod as starter, more out of necessity than anything else.  With Raterink behind center, this team will struggle with quarterbacking issues all season long.

We also meet a number of lesser-known players who, in trying to make this team, remind us that not every professional football player in this country makes ten million dollars a year.  Oh, and then there are the cheerleaders.

As an expansion team, the LA Kiss are behind the 8-ball when it comes to fielding their opening day roster.  Stanley and Simmons are obsessed with putting a winning product on the field but their unrealistic expectations are tempered by a coaching staff that understands the roster cards they’re dealt.

As the episodes roll on, we see Team Kiss win their first game against San Antonio but struggle the rest of the way out.  There are even, as one would expect, heated moments between coaches and players, one that takes place while a game was actually going on.  Oh, reality television, how I despise thee.  4th and Loud isn’t exactly mind-numbing programming but it’s not exactly educational either.

Co-owners Brett Bouchy and Schuyler Hoversten, two of the show’s least likeable characters, are constantly scrambling to ensure their football games pack an entertainment punch. Pyrotechnics, suspended go-go dancers and the players entering through elevated scaffoldings all add to the entertainment value.

Brent and SchuylerBut what about the wins?

Budgeting huge productions ultimately distract both players and coaches.  I’m pretty sure having a camera stuck in their face didn’t help matters either.

After a successful start, Team Kiss gets exposed for what they really are: a team ill-prepared to compete against the better teams in the league.  As they start to lose, the drama mounts and 4th and Loud devolves into your traditional reality TV show:   athletes and the women they cheat on, men trying to make money, people getting fired and all the drama that ensues when cameras follow people around in their allegedly unscripted lives.  Infidelity, infighting and insolence, oh my!

Things finally come to a head after they start the season 2-8, getting outscored in one game 70-21, then the next 70-25.  Cue the shit hitting the fan.  Things also get juicy when a quarterback they bring to replace Raterink tries to take the head coach’s job.

LA Kiss ownersI can’t say the show wasn’t entirely well done.  It’s just difficult for me to commit an hour of my week to anything that doesn’t involve work or sleep.  It is entertaining to see Simmons and Stanley play the dickhead bosses we all love to hate.  Perhaps a cameo in Horrible Bosses 3 is in order.

The good news is the show is not as bad as the team, which is saying something considering how bad the team actually turns out to be.

4th and Loud was Hard Knocks-ish on an Arena Football level, just with a little more face paint and Kiss paraphernalia.  There are some engaging personalities, guys with real world problems who when they don’t make the team must turn back to their day jobs but isn’t that what happens to all of us?

If you’re a fan of Arena Football and/or Kiss, you’ll probably get a kick out of the show.  Its future, however, remains uncertain.  AMC has decided not to renew 4th and Loud.  It may still be picked up by another network.  If Simmons and Stanley have anything to say about it, it will be.  But as they learned in their initial season, that still won’t equate to wins on the football field.

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12 Replies to “4th and Loud: A season in review”

  1. So Jon Bon Jovi wasn’t interested in this crap ? The rocker was an owner of the Philadelphia Soul and then sought to lead a consortium who wished to buy the Buffalo Bills . The franchise was purchased b Terry Pegula for $1 billion .

    D-How once the forgotten man of the NBA is now getting it done with the Houston Rockets . Any chance both the Lakers and Magic are missing the center ?

    Ben Roethlisberger on tap to shred another NFL defense , throwing six touchdowns and over three hundred yards for a third consecutive week ? New York Jets , come on down for your can of whup ass .

  2. I wonder who’s made more money over their careers, Al.

    Bon Jovi or Kiss.

    According to Wikipedia, the internet’s source for all things useless, Bon Jovi has actually sold more albums in the US but Kiss makes most of their money touring. It’s safe to say that neither batch of rockers is wondering where their next meal will come from.

    Re: Dwight Howard, Al, there was a time where he was the most promising young center in the league. Despite his bitchiness, we all knew that if he landed in the right spot, you’d probably still rather have him on your team than not.

    Houston was a good fit. It’ll be interesting to see how far they can go this season.

    Big Ben? Yea, I would think the Jets won’t pose much of a challenge to a hot Steelers team but we all know how my picks have gone this season.

  3. Bon Jovi have had hits worldwide whereas Kiss as you state , are more of a road and marketed brand .

    Well , now that we know who the best team in the West currently are , we can now say the Rockets are good but not great, as the best offensive combo in the NBA shredded the defense as Klay Thompson and Step Curry bit#ch slapped the Rockets back into last week . Is there anything else that needs to be said at this juncture ?

    Is there a better college quarterback in College Football than Dak Prescott ? Granted , the talk about Marcus Mariotta remains the talk of the town but Prescott has been as equally impressive over the course of this season . The Heisman is Mariotta’s to lose as his body of work has been impressive .

    tophatal ……………

  4. Chris

    Two suggestions after today’s games in the NFL . Jay Cutlert needss to refund 95% of his $126 million deal of which approx $54 million is guaranteed. The Bears suck and now we know that Jay Cutler is no better than a three legged mule being asked to run in the Kentucky Derby .

    Great to see that the Raiders are intent of continuing with their mediocrity . The Broncos’ pounding of the Raiders , another case where were this a Thursday night game there would be an outrage .

  5. Al…

    We’re about to find out how good Prescott really is. He plays at Bama this weekend. A win and solid performance could wrap the trophy up for him already.

    Cutler is horrible as are his Bears, man. If they’re not the worst team in the league, they’re damn close to it.

  6. The Raiders remain the worst team in the league closely followed by the Buccaneers and Bears . Mark Trestman might be lucky if he’s still in a job at the end of the season .

    The game between ‘bama and Mississippi State should be one hell of a contest . Dak Prescott will seek to shred a good Tide defense . Nick Saban is an idiot if he is comparing Prescott to Tim Tebow . Prescott is a far better passer and has a better rushing game .

    Well the Warriors got brought back down to earth with their loss against the Suns but it’s still early days yet in the NBA . Things won’t really heat up until mid December .

    Watched two bouts over the weekend which featured older athletes getting their @sses handed to them . Bernard Hopkins now needs to walk away after his unanimous loss to a East European knockout specialist Sergey Kovalev . In MMA Mauricio “Shogun” Rua barely lasted 35 seconds , having been knocked out by a former SEC lineman , Ovince St Preux . Bam and Rua saw pixies and fairy’s as was knocked flat on his @ss .

  7. I’d like to thank the Steelers for laying down flat on their back like a hooker giving up ” the goods'” for one her tricks . It was an embarrassing display by Ben Roethlisberger and his teammates .

    How bad is the NFC South at present ? Hard to believe the team that wins the division could very well end up with a sub .500 record and knock off a team without better mark out of a playoff berth .

    tophatal …………

  8. Jay Culter wears the same feminine hygiene product as his wife Kristin Cavallari .

    Which feat do you believe to be the more impressive ? The Miami Heat’s four straight appearances in the NBA Finals where they went two and two ? Or the San Antonio Spurs’ five appearances with four wins since 1996 ? Add in this little factoid also , last night when the Spurs’ defeated the Clippers , it happened to be the five hundredth victory where Tim Duncan , Manu Ginobli and Tony Parker were on the court as a trio . How ’bout them apples , rather than the kiss @ss mentality about what the Heat achieved over the last four years ?

    The Miami Heat were never going to be a dynasty , as they were built for the purpose of satisfying Pat Riley and Micky Arison’s ego __________ and the continued posturing of LBJ , who yearns to be loved by the masses.

    How would you stack up the Spurs’ trio against the likes of Bird , McHale and Parish ? Or even Magic , Worthy and Kareem ?

    tophatal …………..

  9. The way I see it, Al, there are six absolutely atrocious teams in the NFL this season: Oakland, Tampa, Jets, Giants, Bears and Jags.

    Here’s the interesting thing… how many of them actually need quarterbacks?

    Bama-Mississippi State? That, my friend, is must see television. I wanna see how Prescott performs on the biggest stage.

    Speaking of boxing, I hear one of the Klitschko brothers is fighting this weekend. Any chance he’ll lose? And if he does, wouldn’t that be good for boxing?

    NFC South? Horrible, Al. I mean, just terrible. The Bucs are 1-7 and they haven’t even been eliminated yet, have they?

  10. Quarterbacks ? Due inflation , the ones I’ve seen representing the six worst teams in the NFL ain’t worth Jack #hit . In other words deflation has struck at least 20% of the league’s passers .

    If Prescott can get his team past the Tide then he’s shoo-in for the Heisman .

    Another clunker of a game on tap in the NFL tonight .

    Louisville vs Minnesota in college basketball . Rick Pitino faces off against his Rich Pitino . The Master and his gakusei (student) .

    Now let me I’ve seen the Sixers (0-7) this season and I’ve laughed my @ss off watching the Lakers but last night the Nuggets giving up eighty four points in the first half was frigging priceless . Brian Shaw , come on down take a bow and then kiss your own @ss goodbye .

    The Knicks JR Smith is an @ss , he has a wide open ‘melo in close proximity to rim with the clock running down and his dumb @ss decides to shoot brick that clanks off the backboard which wasn’t even close to the rim . Why the #%ck did Carmelo Anthony choose to remain with the Knick other than for the money ? That team remains a worthless piece of crap .

    Blake Griffin is so tough , he takes his angst out on a guy who took his picture at Tao’s in Vegas . WTF !

    Tophatal ………….

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