ELLEN CROFT’S SUPREME PILATES: SUPREME ABS

2005, $2.99, at Goodwill Superstore on San Fernando

First Impression: People covet what they see every day.

Second Impression: Above all, he was jealous of her skin. Her smooth, clear skin.

The cover of this DVD should be in the dictionary next to “Dramatic Irony.” The ingenue smiles and laughs for the crowd, blissfully unaware that just behind her, an intense, shirtless dude is Making Plans.

Her stalker does not appear in the actual video, which is a relief. Or is it?  We don’t know anything of his whereabouts.  Did they ever catch him?  It’s amazing what never gets reported in the news.

I quickly learn that this is an 18 minute demonstration video accompanying a piece of fitness equipment known as The Tower. I will admit to you, Gentle Reader, that I was slightly disappointed that the top of said Tower did not house the Eye of Sauron. Nothing in life is ever what you think it is.

The instructor, with the golden ringlets of a High Elf, leads us through a series of exercises that could be done just as well without a cumbersome piece of equipment taking up your whole living room.  I know this, because I did the routine while pretending to have the bar in my hands, and it’s really not necessary.  How often does a tutorial video convince you that you didn’t need to buy the product?

There’s a lot of explaining how to attach and reattach the two different springs to the bar, and how to roll over. I think most people who do Pilates don’t want an additional layer of complications when they are just trying to get in a few minutes of ab work.  Or to quote the back cover, “de-jelly your belly.”  Ugh. Who wrote that?

The most interesting thing about this DVD is that it was clearly shot in the same unsold, prestaged condo where Anatomy of Fitness: Core jerked awkwardly to life.

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