Picks and Pans Review: Bette Midler's Mondo Beyondo

updated 03/21/1988 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/21/1988 AT 01:00 AM EST

HBO (Sat., March 19, 10 p.m. ET)

D

In a few short minutes Mondo Beyondo features mime, break dancing and rap music. If only they also had an openmouthed gum chewer, then this one show would have combined every one of my four greatest dislikes in the world. But Mondo comes close. Instead of an audible gum cracker, it has the next worst thing: a monologuist. What torture. The usually wonderful Bette Midler plays hostess to what is meant to be a parody of cable TV—on cable TV—with segments that are supposed to be cutesy, artsy and cool. In one, an infantile fool in the middle of a garbage dump pretends that plastic champagne glasses can sing. In another, two nearly naked men (one played by Midler's husband, Martin von Haselberg) wearing rubber tires dump cold SpaghettiOs on each other in a men's room. And I thought that the most senseless exercise on cable TV was still home shopping. Wrong again.

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