Archive for August, 2009

The Mad Men Recap Where the Internet Threatens to Collapse in on Itself
August 31, 2009

As per usual, last night’s Mad Men was par spectacular.  Certain things, like Betty and Don’s ever tumultuous relationship, remained the same.  For example, Dan solves his distaste for Roger Sterling’s blackface performance by making himself an Old Fashioned and cryptically discussing his past with a bartender.  Meanwhile, a silverfox by the name of Henry Francis flirts with Betty at Roger Sterling’s Derby Day party; naturally, she does the only the only polite thing to do if you’re a married, pregnant, and fending off advances from another man: Shoot him the ol’ fuck-me eyes.  That’s just proper social decorum when you think about it, and Joan would probably remind us that Emily Post says so.    They fight when Betty realizes Jane drunkenly reveals that she knew about Betty and Don’s split, Roger gets called out by Don for being a tackyass who flaunts his embarrassing marriage, then Betty and Don hug.  With all that drama, it’s no wonder that Sally turning into a thieving lesbian.

Fortunately Trudy Campbell continued her wearing-the-best-hats streak, and then she and Pete did the Charleston:

My goodness how a dancing Pete Campbell GIF can make everything better.  Right?  Right.

We also discovered that nothing changes the uncomfortable conversation of screwing up a surgery like Joan playing the accordion.  Really, it was amazing, and just another reason to remind us that she’s the World’s Second Greatest Joan.  Her husband is the undeniably the worst, and it’s quite heartbreaking to see her trapped in a marriage that amounts to little more than a case of Stockholm Syndrome that substitutes marital “obligation” for sympathy, but she seems like the character most primed to benefit from The Feminine Mystique (which we all know came out in 1963), so I optimistically suspect that this situation will eventually turn around.  I mean, seriously:

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Peggy Olsen Singing “Bye Bye Birdie” Never Gets Old. EVER.
August 28, 2009

I’m certain that the second people at AMC get wind that this clip is online, embedding will be disabled; and, soon after, copyright laws will have this clip going the way of the dodo, the dinosaur, and my beloved clips from Powder Blue.  Until then, though, let’s all bask in the sublime, almost Lynchian pleasure that is Peggy performing “Bye Bye Birdie” in this past week’s episode of Mad Men:

LOVE IT.  Particularly the way the crazy burns in her eye.  Oh, and the way she calmly returns to brushing her hair as though this ain’t no thing.

Seriously, I’ve watched this scene too many times to keep track of, but that hasn’t stopped it from being just as incredible the 137th time around as it was when I first watched it.  I obviously don’t need anymore reasons to love Elisabeth Moss’s work on the show, but Matthew Weiner blessed us with this little morsel of ridicuweirdness, and I’m not going to complain.  

Now let’s all watch it AGAIN!

I Hear Britain’s Faggots Are Totally Delicious
August 27, 2009

Yesterday, while the rest of the nation mourned the passing of a Senator Ted Kennedy, I was in the fits of a craving even more debilitating than cookies.  This isn’t to say that I wasn’t saddened by the news or incapable of appreciating his impressive political legacy, but I have a tendency to live as though I’m the human personification of Carnie Wilson’s I’m Still Hungry, so it only makes sense that I found myself having tunnel vision the second that I began thinking about Swedish meatballs:

i want swedish meatballsAnyways, as my mind became increasingly one-tracked with the thought of those succulent morsels slathered a creamy gravy, I realized that I had absolutely no knowledge as to what made Swedish meatballs so Swedish.  I naturally turned to Wikipedia for the answers, which explains that Swedish meatballs are a mixture of ground beef and pork, along with milk-soaked breadcrumbs and chopped onions.  That’s all quite interesting, but not nearly as interesting as this:

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Check out this new blog!
August 27, 2009

From Shmarker:

Check out this new blog!:

firstyearcompteacher.wordpress.com

It’s magic!

These Melrose Place Ads Tell Me All I Need to Know
August 25, 2009

Have you seen the print ads for this fall’s Melrose Place remake?  They’re straight-forward and to the point, and you have to applaud the marketing people at CW for not trying to advertise the show as anything more than the epically trashy shit show that it’ll indubitably be:

6a00d83451d69069e2011572248ef0970b-500wi

This poster says, “Melrose Place is about people that are prettier than you.  Prettier people that are doing it.  Some of them are in ugly shoes.  Others are allergic to shoes.  Oh, and sometimes there are old people, but they’re secondary to the young and pretty people that are doing it.”

But what about the other posters?  How much does the message stray?  Let us take a look:

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Of Pepsi Ads, Peggy, and Pregnancy Dresses: Small Pleasures from Last Night’s Mad Men
August 24, 2009

Excellent news!  It seems that the good folks over at AMC are crafting handy dandy video recaps for each episode of Mad Men, which means I officially don’t have to worry about plot summary!  I can just prattle on about the small pleasures of Mad Men and leave the serious recapping to those who are less ridiculous than me.  So should you only vaguely remember last night’s episode on account of that cocktail-induced fog, let’s get a quick refresher:

Sterling Cooper lost the Madison Square Garden account on account of their resident bohemian bear (thank goodness, because tearing down Penn Station was the worst), Sterling’s daughter doesn’t want his twentysomething wife at her wedding (even though he’s a total silverfox, you can’t really blame her), Betty’s father is moving into the Draper household (a noble move on Don’s part, but this does not bode well), and Peggy totally pulled a fuck-and-run (no further commentary; that speaks for itself)!   But as is always the case with Mad Men, the deliciousness is in the details.

Details, for example, like the fact that the opening shot of this episode gave me a whole new reason to fall in love with Mad Men:

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Here’s Pete Campbell Dancing to Brighten Your Day
August 20, 2009

Ask, and you shall receive:

This is simply the best thing to happen all week.  Well, the best thing since Mad Men premiered on Sunday.  No, I take that back.  It’s totally the best thing because I can watch this any time, anywhere.  I can’t lug my DVR to work, but I can watch this GIF whenever I need a Pete Campbell pick-me-up.  I could probably watch this all day, and I quite likely will.  It’s just that wonderful.

Also, let’s all agree that Vincent Karthesier’s the best.  I mean, everybody on that show’s the best, but particularly Vincent Karthesier.

Much love to Lydia for finding it on Kottke.org, and lots of love as well to This Recording for making my Dancing Pete Campbell GIF dreams come true.

DO. NOT. WANT.
August 20, 2009

Really?  REALLY???

I’m not one to take much stock in a story that first emerged from a Twitter feed, but that doesn’t mean I can’t be utterly outraged by the mere thought of it.  So here are 140 characters (or less!) from Production Weekly are likely to crush your soul:

Lionsgate is developing a remake of the 1987 classic “Dirty Dancing,” from a new script by Julia Dahl.

Of course, there’s a logical and immediate reaction to this bad idea to end all other bad ideas:

dirty dancing remake

As is, this is already pretty much the most abysmal idea I’ve ever heard, and that’s not even considering about how I’m possibly biased because one of the movie’s most famous lines is directly responsible for this blog’s name.  I’m most certainly am biased, yes, but there’s also no denying that Dirty Dancing is one of the iconic pop masterpiece of the 1980s.  You really can’t top Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey dancing to “Time of My Life,” so why the hell bother trying?

Also, the Dirty Dancing remake is being scripted by the woman responsible for this:

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Barney Frank Makes America’s Crazies Infinitely More Fun
August 19, 2009

I hate to drop the class bomb on you so unexpectedly, but this woman’s outfit is killing me with its incredible classiness:

class bomb

Nothing says “I am capable of making a well reasoned argument that legitimizes the hyperbolic comparison of a Fascist dictator responsible for ordering the deaths of millions with a President pushing for health care reform” quite like an exposed bra and cut sleeves.  Really, without the cut sleeves and the Flashdance-esque collar, I’m pretty sure I’d just write this woman off as a total crazy.  Actually, I’m pretty sure she’s still a total crazy for wearing such a ridiculous shirt with an infinitely more ridiculous political message, but at least you can spot it from a mile away with that outfit.

This other woman looks well put together and quite sane; however, the second she opens her mount, she puts all doubts to rest:

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If There’s Any Justice in the World, Seth McFarlane Will Never Win an Emmy
August 18, 2009

Seth McFarlane wants his show Family Guy to win an Emmy, y’all.  He wants it so badly, in fact, that he’s made a YouTube channel where he’s recycled a scene from an old episode, thrown in some poorly written new dialogue, and decided that this in fact qualifies as some sort of clever, viral campaigning.  Viral?  Likely.  Clever?  Hardly.

Barf bags ready?  Then behold:

Oh man, he’s right.  Nothing says “Give Me an Emmy” like extended sequences of violence and casual racism.  I guess this makes Seth McFarlane the love child of the Saw franchise and D.W. Griffith.  Awesome.  Pop open the bubbly ‘cos it’s Emmys all around.

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A Day Late and a Beef Bourguignon Short, We Finally Have a Mad Men Recap!
August 18, 2009

So I spent my Sunday sipping Pimm’s cups and preparing a beef bourguinon for a Monday crock potting.  It was all very Betty Draper; however, as the cruel mistresses of food fate would have it, I didn’t turn on the crock pot before leaving for work the next day.  I headed back home upon realization and turned on the crock pot, but in my frenzy neglected to make certain that the crock pot was actually plugged in.  Ruh-roh:

crock pot catastrophe

Needless to say, I could’ve broken a chair (Betty Draper style), but I instead chose to drown my sorrows with chicken salad sandwiches and Cary Grant movies, so this recap will be more…impressionistic.  Sure.  That’s a fancier way of saying I’m distracted by my mourning over the loss of French cuisine (because I’m ridiculous), so let’s go with it.

ANYWAYS!

Culinary disasters aside, I think it’s pretty safe to say that the wait for Mad Men was worth it.  Seriously, sweet Don Draper deliciousness, y’all:

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MonaVie Releases New Crack Drink!
August 17, 2009

Greetings from Shmarker!  It’s been awhile, fellow followers of all feats fagulous, since my last post.  I’m sorry for such a long delay (though I know I don’t have quite the following my fellow NPBiaH posters have), but I must blame my studies for such.  No, seriously. I had to sprint a session of marathon reading in order to finish Gravity’s Rainbow by my self-imposed deadline for my directed reading, followed by a fantastic trip to Washington, DC, where I took pictures in front of rockets (see, that was educational as well!) when not drinking at Brickskeller, house of 1,000 beers, followed by a brief visit with Mrs. Dalloway, who insisted on buying the flowers herself (that’s what servants are for!), then a pit stop for Three Cups of Tea with Greg Mortensen (a somewhat delightful read, but I’ll let you know more after I attend a speech he is giving my school and place of employment on Sunday), only to begin my whale watching expedition to locate Moby Dick.  So, yes, I’m a tad stressed.

And, apparently, the Diet Coke of nerd, as Shmathan so nicely called me in a comment on my last post.

But anyway, in an attempt to procrastinate on my reading, I felt compelled to tell you about the most amazing product out there: MonaVie’s energy drink.

monavie_emv

Isn’t that gorgeous looking?  And, if you look closely enough, it’s HEALTHY, too!  I mean, 170 calories in 8.4 ounces!  But, it’s made of Brazilian super fruits, and every Brazilian I’ve seen is super skinny, so it must be healthy!  Delicious, too.  It tastes like a drink my bar makes, which uses regular MonaVie and is marketed as “the world’s healthiest cocktail.”  I like to fashion myself as a connoisseur of energy drinks, as I usually consume at least three or free sugar free Red Bulls, Monsters, Rockstars, or Venoms a week.  A neighbor who sells the stuff brought these MonaVies to me.  It has replaced all other energy drinks as my favorite.  It is Just. Plain. Amazing.  As I live only a two-minute walk away from a movie theatre, I drank one before seeing Julie and Julia last night, and this is where my diatribe about the wonders of this drink really kicks off.

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The Mildred Pierce Remake That’s Not a Remake Will Be Faaaabulous
August 15, 2009

Facto mundo: Todd Haynes loves himself some classic Hollywood, and it shows in every frame of his Douglas Sirk homage, Far From Heaven.  Just look at this image of the always ravishing Julianne Moore and try not to have a Technicolorgasm:

far-from-heaven-3

PERFECTION.  For that reason alone I’d trust this man above all other people (save for Guy Madden) to make a new adaptation of James M. Cain’s Mildred Pierce.  As it served the basis for the Joan Crawford melodrama masterpiece of the same name, one would think that I should be vying for the throne of Queen of All Bitches at such a thought, but Todd Haynes writing and directing a remake of Mildred Pierce is something I can really get behind.  Yes, Mildred Pierce is a sacred cinematic text for us gays, but an openly-gay director with that sort of eye for color has got me absolutely giddy at the thought.

But who shall be his Mildred?  Let’s take a peek:

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You’re a Nobody Until Your Private Parts Are More Talented Than Lady Gaga
August 14, 2009

Depending on your opinion, this kid is either everything that’s right or everything that’s wrong with the democratizing powers of the internet.  I personally think vlogging is the most embarrassing social act of the 21st century, but I also think this kid clearly has a future in law.  His arguments are flawless (and incredibly NSFW), so I’m going with “everything that’s right”:

Is it just me, or is his logic like some cross between a Möbius strip and a black hole?  It’s always a pleasure to see someone get so riled up by something as ultimately inconsequential as Top 40 radio, and even I needed some time before falling for the bashit fabulous camping of Lady Gaga, but his outrage is particularly delicious.  It’s all LOLsteam ahead from the moment he gets riled up about being called gay by the commenters on YouTube, and by the time he calls 102.7 Kiss FM gay–well–my brain has collapsed under the weight of his indignance.  I could try and craft some sort of counterargument, but I don’t think I can keep up with him or his incredibly talented penis.  $20 says it can write better lyrics than Lady Gaga, so I’m pretty certain I can’t compete with that.

So what’re we waiting for?  Someone get this kid an application to Columbia Law (or a radio station), ASAP!

How Much Longer Can I Still Refuse to Believe That the Poltergeist Remake Is Happening?
August 13, 2009

Yesterday, Laura reminded me that MGM is planning to remake Tobe Hooper’s (or, if you believe the rumors, Steven Speilberg’s) 1982 masterpiece, Poltergeist.  We all know how I feel about that:

poltergeist remake bad idea

 The Poltergeist remake is the sort of thing that I’ve been desperately trying to forget for the past several years, and I had remained quite hopeful that it would remain nothing more than baseless chatter and drafts of scripts that would ultimately languish in development for all eternity.  This isn’t optimism so much as flat out denial, but I get a feeling I can’t play ostrich much longer, y’all.

As there’s no word yet from Variety, I haven’t yet been forced to slam my head against my desk in disbelief that it’s any closer to actually existing.   ShockTillYouDrop.com claims that the Poltergeist remakes set to come out on Thanksgiving of 2010, and that’s more than enough for me to start bracing for impending cinematic doom.  To borrow one of Shmathan’s favorite interweb meme phrases: It’s going to be a catastrophe!

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Today’s Secret Shame: Megan Fox’s Fake PSA Has Made My Morning
August 13, 2009

ASUUU MADREEE!!!  There are mornings when I simply adore the MTA and all that public transit has to offer.  Then, of course, there are the days in which a train ahead of you stalls, and you find yourself pondering the injustice of another fare hike while your train idles on the track.  Sadly, today was much more like the latter than the former, so you’d better believe that I totally had my bitchface on when I got off the subway.  Gene Tierney bitchface, to be precise:

leave_her_to_heavensmb

Fortunately enough, a new bit of viral marketing for Jennifer’s Body has cropped up all over the interwebs, and it simply reconfirms my suspicions that this movie is going to be trashy goodness.  The clip’s a PSA in which Megan Fox discusses the trials and tribulations of being a teenager.  She may not be the obvious (or even reasonable) choice for such a message, but NO MATTER!  When Megan Fox wants to talk about peer pressure and teen bullying, you’d better shut up and listen:

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I Can’t Believe the News Today! Tragedy Has Struck Broadway!
August 12, 2009

Mon dieu, y’all!  Did you hear the news today about Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, the Spider-Man musical that was to be directed by Julie Taymor and has songs written by Bono and the Edge?  It’s simply terrible:

spider-man musical hiatus

NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!  Not an indefinite hiatus!  Damn you, recession!   You’re ruining EVERYTHING.

The New York Post has the details:

Last week, production crews at both the Hilton Theatre and the scene shop where the show was being built were put on “hiatus” because the producers ran out of money. Assistants in the scene shop “ran to the bank to cash their checks because they weren’t sure they’d clear,” a source says.

Now comes word that the actors have been released from their contracts, with no incentive (i.e., money) to hang around waiting for the production to get back on track.

While I’m rather certain Shmarker will be deeply disappointed by this news, I personally can’t say that I’m that sad.  Or even surprised.

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Reflections on the Robocalypse
August 12, 2009

So, I’m sitting here in a Marietta Starbucks, missing New York and hopped up on way too much caffeine–provided by mine and Benji’s favorite barista, Shmason–and passing the time by cackling not-so-quietly to Benji’s latest witticisms.  His last post, with its mention of the possibility that YouTube’s intuitive recommendations may be a sign of the coming Robot Apocalypse, got me thinking.  Personally, I’ve always found the evolution of artificial intelligence fascinating and frightening.  I have also long believed that the tech geeks at Google (which is truly becoming the repository of all knowledge…) are one wrong algorithm away from creating Skynet, or worse, Brainiac.

Google Brainiac

While I have previously asserted that I look forward to the Zombie Apocalypse with considerable enthusiasm, I do not have similar enthusiasm for the robotic equivalent.  And news stories like this, and this, do not reassure me in the least.  My reasons for my Robocalyptic Trepidation are myriad, but for the purposes of this post, I will restrict them to the top three:

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Things That Should Not Exist: The LEGO Movie
August 12, 2009

Well, I’ve long suspected it, but now I’ve absolutely no doubt about it:

hollywood officially the worst

I read this morning on ComingSoon.net that there’s going to be a LEGO movie.  Yes, you read that correctly: A movie based on LEGOs.  There’s an even longer piece in Variety about it, so you just know this isn’t a nightmare from which you’ll eventually awake.

I don’t even know where to begin with this bullshit, so here are some details to make you lose faith in humanity: 

Dan and Kevin Hageman are writing the script for the family comedy that will mix live action and animation. The studio is keeping the plot tightly under wraps, but it’s described as an action adventure set in a LEGO world.

Dan Lin (upcoming Shorts and Sherlock Holmes) will produce the movie through his Lin Pictures, which is also behind a Tom and Jerry film that will put the feuding animated characters in a live-action setting.

LEGO sparked to Lin and the Hageman brothers’ embrace of core values LEGO wanted to include in a film, especially “a fun factor, creativity and that imagination has no boundaries,” Lin said.

It’s ironic because the “core values” of LEGO are apparently “creativity and…imagination,” yet a movie about LEGOs suggests that creativity and imagination are more elusive to Hollywood than orgasms were to ’50s housewives.  Mad Men taught me that.

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Crushing On Colin Farrell Is the New Riding A Bicycle
August 11, 2009

Back during my freshman year of college, if you asked me how I felt about about Colin Farrell, you’d probably not get a coherent response so much as a stream of school-girlish noises that vaguely resembled squeals of enthusiasm filtered through a ridiculousness purifier:

Colin Farrell !!!

I bought Tigerland on DVD because there’s an out-of-focus shot of his business in it.  I nearly took out my roommate’s girlfriend as I darted to get in front of the television when he introduced U2 during the 2003 Academy Awards.  I sat through Daredevil.  And S.W.A.T.  In short, I was an utter embarrassment.

However, like all crushes, my interests waned.  I largely attribute this to both my fickle tastes and seeing Ryan Gosling in The Notebook.  Oh, follies of youth!

ANYWAYS, I was certain I was done with that business.  CERTAIN.  He won his Golden Globe this spring and, while I was happy to see him make a comeback, I wasn’t reduced to banshee-like shrieking.   Then I saw this video, though, and the shrieking recommenced:

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