- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 14, 2005

Shore’s ‘Store’

Comic actor Pauly Shore hopes reality television will let him have the last laugh with critics and former fans alike.

The former MTV personality is back after a long absence as part of the new TBS series “Minding the Store.”

The reality show follows Mr. Shore as he tries to breathe new life into the family business, the legendary Los Angeles laugh house known as the Comedy Store.

It’s a chance for Mr. Shore to prove his initial fame wasn’t a fluke while revealing a different side of himself.

“America didn’t know I grew up there,” Mr. Shore says of the club that helped comic greats like Jim Carrey and Richard Pryor hone their acts.

“The Comedy Store is like an artists’ colony. Watching the greats was obviously a huge asset,” he adds, crediting the environment for shaping his own comedy chops. His father, Sammy Shore, is a longtime comic, and his mother, Mitzi Shore, is the Comedy Store’s owner/manager.

Now, it’s the son’s turn to “Shore” up the legendary club and take another stab at fame — although viewers should know the comic has been in charge of the operation for a while.

Still, it hasn’t been easy for Mr. Shore to attempt a comeback. He virtually disappeared after a short-lived self-titled Fox sitcom in 1997 and jokes that he still has the lash marks from the critical whippings of such films as “Son-in-Law” and “Bio-Dome.” Both inspired his most recent film, the self-directed and self-financed “Pauly Shore Is Dead,” which bypassed most theaters.

The career crisis left Mr. Shore with time to ponder his past.

“You gotta be present with where you are … my phone isn’t ringing … and to be OK with it and talk about it,” he says, while pointing out that even the greats — like Frank Sinatra — experienced lulls in their fame.

“My career is no different than anyone else’s career who has been up and down,” he says.

The new show, premiering Sunday at 10 p.m., begins with Mr. Shore trying out a “Hot Girls of Comedy” night at the Store. He’s more the straight man this time around, letting his colorful sidekicks draw out the humor.

Mr. Shore says he hopes for a different kind of fame this time around, should the show hit its mark.

“I wanna be able to finance my own stuff,” says Mr. Shore, 37, adding that he has a script he’d love to shoot.

He sounds optimistic and hopes the public will give him a second chance.

“Sometimes you have to go away to come back,” Mr. Shore says.

New Fuse lit

Adonis Thompson once dreamed of becoming a scientist.

These days, though, he’s preparing to mix music, not chemicals, as a veejay for the Fuse music channel. Last week, the Memphis, Tenn., resident won the “Ultimate Fuse Gig: The VJ Search,” Associated Press reports.

Mr. Thompson got the majority of online votes to win the competition, beating Ronnie Ruelas Jr., a deejay from Los Angeles.

His first veejay duty is co-hosting “Videomaniac,” a new show with Fuse VJ Marianela Pereyra that will be filmed on the streets of New York.

“I’m bringing a different type of style to Fuse,” Mr. Thompson, 24, said. “The way I was raised, you are who you are. That’s my thing.”

Mr. Thompson, who graduated from Arkansas State University in 2003 with a degree in radio and television, counts Linkin Park and the Roots among his favorite acts.

The newly minted veejay is also familiar with the media glare. He was named one of Cosmopolitan magazine’s 50 Hottest Bachelors in America last year. Fuse casting scouts notified him in January about their contests. Now, a few months later, he’ll join Miss Pereyra, Dylan Lane, Steven Smith and Juliya Chernetsky on Fuse’s roster of veejays.

Mr. Thompson doesn’t know how many zeroes will be on his paycheck, but he’s focusing more on the transition from country life to the Big Apple.

“I’m in it for the long haul,” he said.

The ‘Battle’ resumes

“Battlestar Galactica,” a surprise hit for cable’s Sci Fi Channel, returns tonight for its second season with an episode that picks up precisely where the first season left off.

The show, airing at 10 p.m., finds a wounded Commander Adama (Edward James Olmos) battling for his life while his assailant (Grace Park) is taken into custody. Meanwhile, the Galactica vessel becomes lost in space when it gets separated from the Colonial Fleet.

The series, inspired by the kitschy 1970s space drama, has drawn glowing notices from critics and established itself as a solid original for the Sci Fi channel. The series also stars Mary McDonnell, Katee Sackhoff and Michael Hogan.

Compiled by Christian Toto from staff and wire reports.

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