Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Psych... FINALLY Back For Season 7

It's FINALLY back!  After what seems like an eternity, Psych is back for it's 7th season.  Now, if it's going to take you 400 years between seasons, best not to end season 6 with a cliffhanger.  In fact, I completely forgot last year ENDED in a cliffhanger.  So it was a little awkward when I had to google to remind myself what was going on.

Last season ended with Sean's dad getting shot on the beach.  It was a whole dirty cop thing.  So this is one of those episodes where Sean gets really serious for a bit, which is cool because I think James Roday is pretty hot when he gets all serious on us.  But what is Roday without Dule Hill.  Within 20 mins, Sean's dad is doing better and Gus is there to help Sean catch the baddies.  Who would have thought these two men would make such an epic comedy duo.  Their "TSK" fight during this episode was epic.  But, they plot of this episode was kind of boring, I felt like we kept going around in "he did it but how do we get him" circles.  Of course they catch the bad guy in the end, and Sean gets all serious on us again for a bit but then Juliette comes in to save the day.  Not a strong opener, but the hilarity was there so I'll let this one slide.

There are some thing about the show that are starting to slip after 7 seasons.  Sean barely does the Psych thing anymore, and it's beginning to seem like his psychic charade is the smallest part of the show... even though its the title of the show.  Also, I am not digging Sean's relationship with Juliette.  I know they are together in real life or whatever, but there is no chemistry   It kind of seems like Maggie Lawson doesn't know whether to play the tough cop or the sweet girlfriend.  It's kind of like when you try to say two words at the same time and it comes out as one weird amalgamated word like "Awestastic" trying to say awesome and fantastic... it just ends up gibberish.

But on the pro side, the show is still hilarious.  Gus's whine/girly noises are enough to keep me watching.  There is great comedy not only between Sean and Gus, but I do love me some Detective Lassiter.  Timothy Omundson is a great foil for Roday and Hill.  Last season's haunted apartment episode was one of the funniest of last season.  I also love the addition of Woody the mortician, the hilarious if not insanely awkward, but mostly hilarious Kurt Fuller (Zachariah for you Supernatural fans out there).

Anyway, I'm just happy to have Sean and Gus back on TV.  Judging by the coming attractions for the season there are a lot of laughs coming our way.  And as always, lots of fabulous cameos.  Let's do this!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Ripper Street Just Keeps Getting Better And Better

Is there nothing about this show that isn't beautiful?  Between the sets, costumes, dialogue and brilliant performances it's hard to find a fault.  I find with most TV shows that no matter what, there tends to be something irritating about a show, whether it be a cast member or cinematography or bad writing, but this show, much like Boardwalk Empire, is not only is it historically well written and put together but superbly acted.  Well, Boardwalk had to deal with Paz de la Huerta, but they got rid of her right quick.  The truth is, there are no cast members in this show I would want to see removed, in fact I find myself wanting more of certain performances.  Basically, I think we need more Emily Reid (Amanda Hale who I wrote about in Being Human), her performance is quietly brilliant portraying extreme depth in silence.  That girl needs to get in some Pinter plays.

Everybody on Ripper Street is wonderful, and a shout out to Adam Rothenburg who is playing Captain Homer Jackson, an American actor playing an American.  I mean, even in America we don't cast Americans in main or sometimes even title roles, a good accent goes a long way.  But Rothenburg is not only the real deal, but he keeps up with veteran and extremely talented British actors.  It's not secret that the Americans and British have very different acting styles and educations, but Rothenburg shines along side his Brit brethren so bravo!

But I had a point when writing this blog and my point was this.  Matthew Macfadyen is brilliant.  It's like watching poetry in motion.  He plays Edmund Reid with grace and beauty.  Reid's character isn't a new one, damaged cop with skeletons in his closet and a crumbling marriage.  We've all seen it before.  But Macfadyen brings something new.  It's not all close to the cuff, get your work done and move on.  In every frame you can see the pain of his life shining behind his eyes and he is constantly battling against it.  I mean... look!  Look at this:
I can't!  I can't!  It's just too good!  And his scenes with Emily... OH!  The two of the together are a lethal emotional combination.  They play off each other so well.

In the past few episodes we keep seeing the same few characters popping up over and over again.  One of those characters is Deborah Goren (played most lover-ly by Lucy Cohu).  At first she seems like a minor character but she kept popping up episode after episode.  And without showing it overtly,  you could see the unhappily married Reid falling in love with her.  So what you ask, characters fall for each other all the time.  No, you don't understand, Macfadyen played it in such a way that you could tell he had no clue he was falling for her and you could see in his eyes the moment he realized how he felt.  When he finally kisses her, you felt the release of the building tension as much as his character must have.  Isn't that why we watch TV?  For these kinds of cathartic moments?  Boy does Macfadyen deliver.  I could honestly go on and on with how impressed I am with this performance.  Macfadyen truly breathes new life into a totally beaten to death character type.

Oh don't worry Jerome Flynn, I haven't forgotten about Drake, the brute with a heart of gold.  It's just that your presence on this show is disturbing to me as I adore you on Game of Thrones and your main character status on Ripper Street makes me believe you may be biting the big one this season.  I don't like that.  Either way, Drake is the complete opposite of Bronn, showing the range that Flynn can perform.  No offense Flynn, but you have the face of a tough guy, so it's not hard to see you as the muscle on a show, but on Ripper Street he is sensitive and kind... even if he does beat the shit out of most suspects.  His pining over the whore Rose (played by the absolutely gorgeous Charlene McKenna) was heart breaking.  He was like a puppy.  I love contradictions, but they are hard to pull of, Flynn does it with skill.

Another character that I hope to see more of is Long Susan, played by MyAnna Buring.  Her character is still a complete and total mystery, other than the fact that we know she is in bed (literally and figuratively)  with Captain Jackson.  And we also know she is a tough cookie.  For a women as lithe and beautiful at her, the tough bitch character is hard to play convincingly, but the small amount of fear in her eyes shows that her mask is on the verge of slipping.  I really look forward to see more of this macho madame.

If you haven't watched Ripper Street yet I suggest you do so, especially if your an aspiring actor because there is a lot to be learned from these talented men and women.  I hope to see a lot of awards in the futures of these actors because boy do they deserve them.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Why I Want To Be Excited About The Oscars... And Why I'm Not

Oh the Oscars, a night of glamour, where the famous become epic and beautiful people get told that their beautiful.  Once was a time that I sat on the edge of my seat, fingers crossed, shouting with excitement when my favorite actor/director/costume designer wins.  But now, well, it's just not the same.  Hollywood has gotten too political, you can's t even bet on the Oscar's anymore because there is hardly ever a surprise.  And 10 best films... REALLY?  Is that necessary?  I don't think so.

First thing's first.  This Oscar season started with a big slap in the face for Ben Affleck.  Why was he not nominated?  Why?  It really is mind boggling that he can win every other award for a Argo and that everybody seems to love the film, but he loses the nomination to a movie I've never even heard of.  Wut.

Secondly, Seth McFarlane,  I'm having my doubts.  I want to believe, really I do, but I'm not feeling it.  I think we will have an epic opening number song and dance bit, but I feel it going downhill from there.  So far I've been impressed with the ad campaign, but here is my problem with McFarlane, he isn't that great live.  Ever watch an interview with him?  He's kind of flat.  And it's one thing to be offensive when you're hiding behind a cartoon, it's another thing when you just flat out say something offensive without a "gigady".  Then again he can't be worse than Anne Hathaway and James Franco were.  That was the worst thing to ever happen to the Academy Awards.

Third, there is no surprises this year, even though their should be.  The only thing that is totally a toss up is best picture, but I'm kind of hoping it goes to Argo just to make up for the Ben Affleck drama.  I think it's really a toss up between Lincoln and Les Mis, but here's hoping.  The greatest thing that could happen is that Hugh Jackman and Daniel Day-Lewis split the votes and somehow Bradley Cooper wins because I thought he was genius.

Look, I know the people who are going to win deserve these Oscars, especially Anne Hathaway and Jennifer Lawrence but I miss the feeling of genuinely not knowing.  Also, I think if you win so many Acadamy Awards you should pull yourself out of the race.  We get it Daniel Day-Lewis (and Meryl Streep) you guys are demi-gods of acting.  We know, the world knows, let somebody else win!  Okay, I would never take my hat out of the ring if I kept getting nominated, I JUST REALLY LOVED BRADLEY COOPER'S PERFORMANCE!  I'm sorry, I'll go pray to Day-Lewis and Streep for forgiveness.

All and all, the best thing that could happen is that McFarlane blows me away.  After that, unless a boob pops out of Adrien Brody kisses a stranger I'm just not feeling it.  It's an excuse to drink on a Sunday at this point.  Strike that last statement from the record.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Being Human... WITH JULIAN BARRATT (Spoilers)

So as a monster Boosh fan, a monster Being Human fan and, well, a monster monster fan, tonight's mash up gave me a full on nerdgasm.  Not to mention that I've been following Ripper Street and who else shows up in tonight's episode?  DI Edmund Reid's wife Emily (played by the lovely and beautiful Amanda Hale)!  Oh it's just so overwhelming!  Barratt showed us what Howard would have become if it hadn't been for Vince, and it was epic... I miss the Boosh.

So tonight's episode was called Pie and Prejudice, and while I loved this episode for all of the reasons I already mentioned, I had one huge problem with it... It was almost exactly like the season 1 episode "Tully".  A lonely and scared werewolf gets taken advantage of by an older, seemingly more successful werewolf.  Just like the first time around, the housemates get pissed when the invited/uninvited furry guest overstays their welcome.  Despite the fact that it was the same episode I didn't care because Julian fucking Barratt.

Barratt played asshole weatherman Larry, who lives a semi-charmed life until he is scratched by a werewolf. Then he becomes a con artist, traveling and public speaking about a book he's never even read.  Tom, yet again struggling to be just as good as Hal, sees Larry as a new father figure.  Larry's a successful werewolf. And Tom is a perfect mark.  Larry tells Tom that he will teach him how to be a successful werewolf and Tom jumps at the chance, praying to make his father, McNair, will be proud.  Larry wiggles his way in to the triple supernatural home, and makes a very unwelcome guest.  The Tom competing with Hal gig is getting a bit tired, but I'll allow it this one more episode.

While Howar...I mean Larry, takes Tom for a ride, Hal goes to meet with his 250 year old ghost friend Marie (Hale).  Of course, Alex jumps at the chance to meet another ghost.  Hal refuses, Marie is a sensible lady of her time and he will not have Alex corrupting her!  Of course Alex goes anyhow, and Marie asks Hal if they can spend time, girl to girl.  And then we find out that Marie is batshit totally insane.  She curses, reads peoples minds, and has shags in gross bathroom stalls.  Alex is horrified.  She asks Marie whats happened to her and why she continues to lie to Hal about her lady like nature.  Turns out Marie thinks she was Hal's last victim.  She thinks she is keeping him clean with his visits, she thinks she is so helpful that she's been turning down doors for centuries!

Of course, Alex has to meddle.  She brings Marie home, where she does her best to act lady like as she can, but Larry is being a total lech.  The second Hal leaves the room, she threatens to cut Larry's balls off in the night and stabs the chair a bit close to his bait and tackle.  Hal sees but can't believe, but still refuses to tell Marie the truth.

After nearly losing his balls, Larry storms off to his room to punch a mirror.  Alex begs Tom to see the light about Larry and when Tom goes up to see if Larry is ok he finally does.  Also, Larry calls Tom "TomTom" which was hilarious.  In very Howard fashion, Larry seems to believe the bullshit he is spewing but FINALLY Tom calls him out.  Larry tells Tom that it's the wolf that holds them back, but Tom would never know because he's never known what its like to be human.  Tom leaves, he's going back to the woods where he belongs because he'll never be able to be really human.  He will never make McNair proud.

Confession time for Hal and Marie.

It doesn't go well.  Marie freaks out when she finds out Hal has only been clean 50 years.

But no time to worry, Alex and Hal have to find Tom, who is living next to McNair's grave.  And crying his eyes out.  TOM YOU ARE BREAKING MY HEART!  Hal tries to convince Tom that he is an amazing human and it's not the beast inside that has ruined him.  Hal knows what it's like to have a beast.  But Tom won't have it and Hal goes to have it out with Larry.  We see them confront each other, but the screen cuts to Alex and Tom having a heart to heart.

Alex convinces Tom to come home, but they enter to a bit of a nightmare.  Hal is fighting off a stake pointed at his heart.  Marie's revenge.  But they talk her off the ledge and it all works out, yey.  But what of Larry?

HAL FUCKING KILLED HIM!  NO!  JULIANNN!  He was so fantastic!  How can they let him go so fast!  After Larry begged to see the beast inside of Hal, he saw it... and was choked to death with an electrical cord.  Sigh, but it was so good to see Julian Barratt on TV again.

But, Larry's death did help somebody.  Hal has to call Rook to clean up his new mess.  Good thing too, cuz Rook was about to blow his brains out.

All and all this episode was actually hilarious.  Between Barratt being somewhat Howard-ish and Hale being hilarious cursing and being an awful person you couldn't help but laugh, a lot.  But, there was no devil this time around, so what is he up too?  Hal killing Larry must have given him a real hard on.

Anyway, did I mention I miss the Boosh?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Jonny Lee Miller, You Elegant Genius You

That's right!  You lay there and look smug!  You deserve it.  Every episode I become more and more in love with Miller's portrayal of Shelock Holmes.  Now, I'm not going to lie, I worried for Miller.  Benedict Cumberbatch is brilliant at playing Sherlock, but Miller's Sherlock is not only different than Cumberbatch's virginal more analytically minded Holmes, but just as brilliant.  If you are not watching this show, you really are missing out.

Tonight Sherlock gave an impassioned speech to Watson, admitting that not only had he known that she wasn't being paid to be his sober companion anymore, but that he tried to push her away.  It was beautiful.  Then when he turned around and asked her be his partner!  Oh!  So lovely!  When he said "I'm better with you," my heart literally melted.  I am dead now.

This plot is leading to an obvious romance between Sherlock and Watson, but when?  Who knows!  Are they going to go Bones style and wait 6 seasons to start the romance?  I kind of hope so, they can't jump the shark, the show is too good.  This works out really well for Liu's character as well.  Now that she has finally admitted she loves Sherlock's work she has really opened up.  It seems that the shell around her character has cracked and when she hit Sherlock with a basketball and said "It could have been a knife" I saw light at the end of the tunnel in Liu's close to the cuff performance.

But back to Miller. I haven't seen many of his movies, but I must get on it because I really am falling for his simple and elegant performance style.  I adored his last American show Eli Stone.  The only reason that show failed was due to the unfortunate writers strike which also took down the brilliant Pushing Daisies.  Eli Stone was another beautiful performance from Miller, who also delivers a near perfect American accent.  I implore you to give me recommendations for other Miller performances, I have seen Dracula 2000, Aeon Flux and Dark Shadows.


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Face Off: Two Heads Are Better Than One (spoilers)

Ladies and gentlemen, I think this may be the best cast this show has had yet!  And BRYAN SINGER as a guest judge!  Need I say more?  The director of my two favorite X-men movies and the producer of X-men first class and producer/director on House M.D. and all around awesome guy Singer came on the show to plug his new film Jack the Giant Slayer.  The contestants were paired off in teams of two to create a two headed giant that Jack would fight.

The teams and concepts are as follows:

Alam and Eric Z:  This was a weird makeup.  A blue giant with heads under his feet.  I didn't get it.
Anthony and Autumn:  They had a multi headed monster, with a head in the back whispering to the main head.
Jenna and Meagan:  Hot mess.  Weird tree giant.  Honostly I don't know what was up.
Eric F and Chris:  A literal two headed GIANT where the actor's head would represent the head of a poor villager.
House and Wayne:  Two headed one armed giant.  One head was operated by the actor's other arm.

All of the teams did amazing work, but it was apparent from minute one that Eric F's idea to make a real giant seemed un-doable.  But Chris supported the idea, despite that every week Eric F takes on too much and nearly doesn't finish.  But this make up ROCKED!  It reminded me of a British pantomime puppet!  I could not get enough, and while the other makes ups (with the exception of Jenna and Meagan and Alam and Eric Z) were fantastic, nothing held up to the well thought out giant.  It was no surprise when Chris and Eric F. won.  Eric's idea to literally make a giant was fab-u-lous, this is the kind of thinking movie makers need today!  CGI my ass, that make-up/puppet was unbelievable, and having Jack stabbing at the giants hand was a touch of humor that no other contestant thought to add.

Jenna's needed to go since day 2.  I know she has a tumor that is causing her hand to go numb, but she should have left the show so other people could have stayed on.  It really wasn't fair, in two challenges she dragged her team mates down and then did nothing but complain.  Its sad because she is obviously talented enough to get on the show, but I was getting sick of hearing about her issues.

All and all I am so impressed with these artists.  I think Autumn needs to go next though because she is annoying and I don't want to hear about how awesome she thinks she is.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Being Human: Sticks and Rope (Spoilers)

ALEX!  Look at you!  Carving out a niche for yourself on this show!  And good God, this episodes actually scared me.  At one point I even let out a scream, which was weird because I was watching it on my computer with my headphones on and my dad looked at me like I was insane.  But little boy ghosts are super creepy.  This season is going to be epic.... especially with who will be in the next episode, but we'll get there... despite the fact that I am bursting with fountains of joy.

This episode had three main components, Hal and Tom in competition for employee of the month, Alex gets stuck with the ghost of a Victorian boy and Rook using Crumb to try to save his organization.

Hal and Tom are in competition.  Again.  Haven't we seen this before?  Yeah, we have but the whole thing ended with a food fight and you can't hate that.  Basically, Tom wants to feel like he matters, so when an employee of the month competition comes around, he sees it as his opportunity to prove himself.  Of course, their boss is pining after Hal, so even when Hal purposely tries to suck at his job, Tom somehow gets screwed.  It doesn't help that both of them have the devil whispering in their ear.
We learned in the season premiere that the devil feeds on the hatred between werewolves and vampires, so he pits Hal and Tom against each other.  At first it works, but Alex is able to make both men see reason.  Not before the two boys have a monster food fight in the middle of the hotel dinning room.  Their boss fires Tom blaming him for the whole thing, and Hal did the whole "if he goes, I go" thing and they are both sacked.  But the devil can't have that!  So he gets that snobby boss to hire them back.  Then he makes he face bleed, which was totally fucked, and she cleans herself up by killing herself.  But the devil needs one last thing to happen before He Will Rise.  Ghost girl's gotta go.  She keeps the peace between the werewolf and vampire, and he can't have that.  BTW, Phil Davis is absolutely fantastic and needs an award.

While this is going on, the scariest thing to ever happen in Being Human history is occurring   The ghost of a little boy starts haunting Alex.  It is the creepiest thing ever when she hears her name in the child's voice as water drips into the sink.  Each drop whispers the name "Alex."  When she turns the sink on, the most horrifying screams come with it.  Terrified she runs to get Hal and Tom.  Together, the three of them find the boy, named Oliver, who turns out isn't really scary so much as a pain in the ass.  And kind of racist.  At first he is demanding, driving Alex insane.  But Tom, being awesome entertains the boy at least for a while.

Alex hits the wall and sends Oliver to his room.  Hal suggests that she go talk to him.  Before she opens the door she hears little Oliver talking to a creepy voice coming through an old radio.  Alex asks who he is talking to, but Oliver won't answer.  Alex softens, and the next day she and Oliver have a great time.  Alex is reminded of her brothers, and really takes the young ghost under her wing.  Oliver starts to feel guilty and admits his past to her.  He tells her he is afraid of the men with sticks and rope, who went after Annie once.  Oliver felt responsible for the drowning death of his little brother, and he committed suicide.  He goes to tell Alex what he's been up to when the lights go out and neither ghost can exit.  Then things get horrifying.  

Oliver's dripping wet scary ass ghost brother shows up.  At first they run from him. but Alex realizes this is his unfinished business.  Oliver goes to his brother, and it seems all is well and the HOLY FUCKING SHIT ITS THE DEMON GUYS WITH STICKS AND ROPES!  I screamed, that happened.  We see the devil is using these guys as a mouthpiece, saying he must take one of the ghosts to hell, and Alex volunteers   Oliver tries to argue, but the men with sticks and ropes grab her.  In the nick of time Oliver's dripping wet scary ass ghost brother reappears and Oliver's door opens.  Alex tells him to walk through and close the door on his way.  The closed door ends the devil's connection with the demons, but they don't vanish until they leave a message.  He. Will. RRRRIIIIIIIIIIIIISSSSSSSSSSSSEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!

Poor Crumb.  This episode we find him locked up by Rook and starving.  Rook promises him blood, once he helps Rook out.  Crumb has lost it.  He has gone totally off the rails.  He agrees to help Rook, but he doesn't realize that he is agreeing to be trapped in a room with his sister and niece with extreme blood lust.  Rook's partner begs him to spare the child, but Rook feels sacrifices must be made.  A starving Crumb kills his sister and niece both.  Poor Crumb is just a nerdy guy who has gotten mixed up in a mess he has no idea how to fix.  Rook shows the video of Crumb killing his family to try and save his department but it's no use.

After killing his family Crumb finds Hal and begs for help.  He feels the monster rising inside of him and begs Hal to save him, but Hal refuses shoving him out the door.  We next see Crumb standing next to some body of water when Rook's partner comes, asking to be turned.  He is a nerdy guy just like Crumb, and they believe they can help each other.  Are these two bullied nerd vamps going to cause a commotion?  Is it all a trick to save this supernatural department?  We'll see!

But after this whole great episode what am most excited about.

 JULIAN FUCKING BARRATT!  The Boosh Boy hasn't been around an awful lot lately, and with Noel doing Luxury Comedy I think we've all longed to see his face again.  AND THERE IT IS!  There it fucking is!  Look at him!  Can't you hear him saying "Hey how's it going, I'm comin' atcha like a bee, like a buzzard."  I watched the show on a terrible internet connection so I didn't even realize it was him, thanks Tumblr. for clearing that up for me.  I AM SO EXCITED!  I have always been a Howard girl, I can get down with elbow patches and slap base.  LETS DO THIS! AHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

It snowed, I'm Bored, Let's Get Down With Cartoons

So, it snowed 3 feet in my town last night and I have literally nothing to do.  So of course, I've spent the day on the internet, mainly imgur, just trying to pass the time.  Somehow I started an argument as to whether Cartoon Network's Adventure Time is a kids show or not ( my username is burtongirl).  I understand the argument, there is definitely adult humor on Adventure Time but it is not an adult cartoon in the way that Family Guy or Metalocalypse which are both literally written for adults.  So, I of course made the argument that the cartoons that 90s kids grew up with were way more adult and disturbing than anything on kids TV now.  Then I thought... I'm going to blog about cartoons.

It's always been a dream of mine to write a book about the cartoons of the 90s because I see them as a second golden age in cartoon history.  Of course, Looney Tunes broke the mold, defining what cartoons should be, followed by Hana Barbera in the 50s... but then things got a bit boring.  And while the 80s hold a their own notable place, the animation began to get stale and cookie cutter-ish.  All of the shows started to look and sound them same, not to mention that almost all of them involved the same comic book super-hero style plots.  But then the 90s came, the face and look of animation changed and things go really, really weird.

Now, believe it or not, Nickelodeon launched their network in 1977 which promptly failed.  They relaunched in in 1979, but it wasn't until they opened their studios in 1990 and launched Nicktoons that we got the cartoon gold of the 90s.  The first Nicktoons animated were Doug, Rugrats and Ren and Stimpy.  Eventually they were followed with Nicktoons like Ahhh! Real Monsters, Rocko's Modern Life, Angry Beavers, Hey Arnold, CatDog and on and on.  Now most of these cartoons were super G rated, especially  Doug, The Wild Thornberry's and Hey Arnold.  Okay, Hey Arnold had a little weirdness with Helga's Arnold head shrine.  But most of these nicktoons were totally fucked.  They would never make it on the air today without parents having riots.

Cartoon Network was developed as an answer to Nickelodean's success, at first playing reruns of Hanna Barbera cartoons.  They had a few of their own series, but Nickelodeon was killing them in ratings.  That is, until What A Cartoon came around.  What A Cartoon.  This show gave independent animators a platform to showcase their work, and those lucky enough were given full contracts.  Believe it or not, the first breath Family Guy ever took was on What A Cartoon as a short called Larry and Steve.  What A Cartoon gave us gems like Cow and Chicken, I Am Weasel, The Powerpuff Girls, Courage the Cowardly Dog, and my least favorite Johnny Bravo.  Cartoon Network really found its niche in 2001 when they created Adult Swim, but we'll stick to the 90s.

Possibly the most underrated network of the 90s, producing some of the best cartoon shows was The WB.  Animaniacs was arguably one of the greatest 90s cartoons, taking a page from Looney Tunes with a large cast of characters and a series of vignettes, birthing spin-offs like Pinky and the Brain and Freakazoid.  The WB also had The Tiny Toon Adventures.

Now I can ramble on about Saturday morning cartoons and after school cartoons, Bonkers, Gargoyoles , Beetlejuice and Talespin, but they were all very G rated shows that would easily make it on the air today.  By today's standards Adventure Time and Regular Show have parents knickers in a twist.  I can't imagine how they would react to Rocko's Modern Life, that show was hilarious but totally disgusting.  Rocko's next door neighbors The Fatheads were constantly insinuating an active sex life, Heffer went to Heck and their favorite superhero Really Really Big Man had nipples of the future.  His nipples attached to your eyes and showed you the future.  HIS NIPPLES!  And Ren and Stimpy?  Forget about it!  The episode where Ren becomes a hermit and makes friends with an earwax sculpture of stimpy and the corpse of a hanged man scarred me for life.  Or what about Cow and Chicken... their parents were just legs!  And that devil character's ass was always out... and shiney

Of course, even at the time parents got upset about these shows.  I remember being the only girl in my girl in my girl scout troop (not my choice) that was allowed to watch Animaniacs.  Their parents thought the show was too violent.  But hey, that show was at least educational!  Yakko sings a song with every country!  I didn't learn it, but he did it.  And the Warner Brothers (and sister) helped Einstien come up with E=MC2.  Ok it's not factual, but I learned Albert Einstien came up with it.  Okay it was a silly show, but it wasn't that bad.

Look, I'm not trying to knock today's cartoons, they are great and I watch them, but they are just a lot more watered down then the cartoons we had a kids.  I can't say whether we were helped or hurt by the semi-disturbing cartoons we grew up with, but I do know we love them passionately.  So here is to 90s cartoons, the networks that housed them and their weird, slightly disturbing nature.

Thursday, February 7, 2013


It's official!  Taissa Farmiga and Frances Conroy are officially signed on for season 3 of American Horror Story!  Ryan Murphy has also revealed that the upcoming season will take place in present day, adding "It will also be more historical in nature."

Taissa made her acting debut in season 1 of American Horror story as the whiny teen turned suicide princess Violet Harmen.  She had a fabulous romance with the adorable yet murderous ghost Tate, and no matter what Tate did, the audience rooted for this teen romance.  At first I wasn't a Violet fan, but as the season progressed I became more and more involved with her relationship with Tate and absolutly fell in love with her and he bad ass-ness.  I just made that a word so deal with it.

Frances Conroy is a seasoned actress who gave brilliant performances in both seasons 1 and 2 of AHS.  In season 1 she portrayed one of my favorite characters the sometimes sexy, sometimes bitter old maid Moira, having it out with Jessica Lange at every corner.  This year she was fabulous again, even if her Angel of Death character was confusing.  I especially loved it when she was the badass inmate with a beehive who invaded on Lange's territory.

So now just sign on Jessica Lange, Evan Peters and Lily Rabe and we are cooking with fire!  I would love to see Violet and Tate back together again!  They had such good chemistry!  FINGERS CROSSED.

Bloggin' Bout Books: Author Addition

That, my friends, is the face of one of my absolute favorite authors, Christopher Moore.  His books are quirky, weird, supernatural and hilarious, so it's pretty obvious how I was drawn to him.  I have read his books and laughed out loud on the NYC subways system, ignoring my fellow passengers who slide away from me in fear that I'm either bat-shit crazy or patient zero in some sort of happiness disease.  New Yorkers aren't huge on happiness.

Now before I give you my top five favorite Moore books, it should be noted that there is an order that I would suggest reading them.  With the exception of Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal, Fool and Sacre Bleu, I would read his books in the order they were written.  Each of his books involve places and characters that overlap.  I read the books out of order, so I would be reading about characters that seemed established which would leave me a bit confused only to later read a different book slapping my head and going "OH!" also causing subway riders to once again slide away from me.

So here are my top 5 favorite Christopher Moore books:

5.  Fool-  Fool is the first Christopher Moore book I ever read.  The whole story is told from the point of view of King Lear's Fool, turning Shakespeare's tragedy into a knee slapping comedy.  As a theatre major, I was really into this concept, especially since I had auditioned to play the Fool in college and didn't get the part.  Still, next to Hamlet, King Lear is one of my favorite Shakespearean tragedies.  

Fool is the story of what's happening to the Fool (who Moore has named Pocket) on and off the stage.  It would be helpful to actually read Shakespeare's King Lear, but it's not necessary for those who make statements like "I wish Shakespeare was dead".  Trust me, I actually know people who have said this.  In Fool, Pocket is literally responsible for every single thing that happens in King Lear.  He spends the entire book planting seeds in the minds of characters often leading to their demise   Pocket loves to pull strings, play jokes, sleep with women and yell "Fucksocks!" whenever the catchphrase is warranted.  So if you like Shakespeare, or if you just like to laugh, I highly recommend this novel.

4.  The Bloodsucking Fiends Trilogy-  Ok fine this isn't a book it's a trilogy, so sue me.  Once I had read Fool I couldn't get enough of Moore, so I googled him.  Not the 30 Rock Tracy Jordon way, just put his name into the google search.  What did I find... this guy wrote a vampire trilogy.  No, I don't think you heard me, this Moore guy not only wrote about Shakespeare, he wrote about vampires.  I think that if you've read any of my other blog posts its pretty clear I have a thing for vampires.  A big thing.  Now, these books can be read in succession, but I would suggest at least reading Practical Demonkeeping and Coyote Blue first, though a character from Fluke does show up in Bite Me.

These books are basically about Jody, who after being attacked walking home from work wakes up to find herself a vampire.  Well that was rude, she never asked for this!  The transition isn't easy, but Jodi enlists the help of want to be writer/grocery store night clerk Thomas "Tommy" Flood.  Jodi turns Tommy's world upside down as she learns to cope with her new condition.  Each book gets progressively more hilarious, but they are also touching love stories and tales of great friendship.

3.  Fluke or, I Know Why the Winged Whale Sings- Fluke is not as hilarious as some of Moore's other books, but you're taken on such a journey, who cares?  I adored this book, it took me on an adventure and made me really think about the world around me, and as an Imgurian, it also made me think about the power of memes.  I made a biologist friend of mine read this book and he called me late one night to tell me he couldn't put it down and had finished it in no time.  He saw things in this novel that I totally missed and we spent a lot of time talking about the complexities of a book that seems so simple.

The novel revolves around Nathan Quinn, a marine biologist on Maui who is researching why humpback whales sing.  While out on a routine expedition to research the humpback whales in the area, he takes a picture of a whale's fluke to find the words "Bite Me" written across his fins.  This discovery leads him on an underwater journey involving goo, whale people and Amelia Earheart.  Come on, tell me that doesn't sound awesome.

2.  A Dirty Job-  So I had kind of a hard time deciding in which order to put my top two books because I love them both so much.  I really couldn't choose so I decided to put A Dirty Job second only because I think the next book will really blow people away.  This book has a darkness to it the Moore's other books don't and I love it.  Still it's just as funny as any of his other novels, but so much darker and more twisted.

The book opens with "beta-male" Charlie Asher in the hospital shortly after his wife has given birth to their first child, Sophie.  Charlie is over the moon, at least until his wife unexpectedly dies from complications, and Charlie is able to see her Angel of Death.  It's then that Charlie is chosen to be a Death Merchant, retrieving  souls from the dead and protecting them from the evils of the underworld until they can find a new home.  All this while trying to raise his daughter and run his second hand shop.  Unfortunately, due to one of Charlie's slip ups, darkness is rising up and threatening to take over our world.  Oh there is so much more I wish I could tell you about this book but I don't want to give anything away!  READ THIS BOOK!  Trust me you won't be disappointed.

1.  Lamb:  The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal- I may go as far as to say this is one of the best books I have ever read.  I was raised Catholic and was deeply involved in my church until I was about twenty, but I would still call myself a practicing Catholic.  But since I take nothing seriously, I have no problem laughing at the bible a bit.  This book fills in the bible's missing parts, Jesus' childhood and where he was between 13 and 30.  I mean, within the first few chapters Moore had me when he described Jesus' brother killing a lizard which Jesus would bring back to life by putting it in he mouth, only to have his brother kill it again.  This book isn't only laugh at loud funny (be prepared for crooked looks on the train) but also a great commentary on religion and how different religious views influence each other.

The book starts with Biff finding himself resurrected in present day by a moronic angel who has calls on him to write the Bible's missing bits.  Biff sits down and pens his adventures with his best friend Joshua (Biff calls Jesus Joshua as that was his original Hebrew name).  Not only does he share what life was like growing up with the Christ Child, he tells of their travels to the East to meet the three wise men.  On the journey to meet each wise man, Joshua learns life lessons which he incorporates into his later teachings, while Biff makes and endless fool of himself, sleeping with whatever woman will have him and generally failing to find the point of the things going on around him.  Honestly, this book is beautiful, blending in eastern cultural ideas with the teachings of Jesus.  Despite Biff's debauchery and humor, you can't help but feel a bit enlightened when you put this book down.  If you read no other Christopher Moore book, please, please pick this one up, I promise you won't be disappointed.

Well, I hope this post introduces Christopher Moore to a new audience, he deserves it.  I have yet to read on of his books that I didn't enjoy, fun, funny and sometimes you really learn something.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

March Comes In Like A Lion... And Out Like A Freaking Lion

March is generally not the time of year that we expect new programming due to Basketball's March Madness, but not this year!  March has some of the most exciting season premieres and two new shows that look very promising.  March comes in strong with the series premiere of Bates Motel and ends even stronger with part 2 of Doctor Who's season 7, the series premiere of Orphan Black and season 3 of Game of Thrones.  March may be my new favorite month of the year!

First up, the series premiere of Bates Motel.  Now, A&E isn't known for it's stellar original programming, they mostly carry depressing reality shows like The First 48 or Intervention, but if History Channel can start producing Emmy Winning original series, why can't A&E?  The original trailers of this show were very American Horror Story-esque, with nothing more than an ominous shot of something gory, ie a burning body as seen here:  Even the music is similar to American Horror Story, so you know what I'm in.  Not to mention that Psycho is one of my all time favorite movies.  

Now, I am a little leery because they are putting Norman Bates in 2013, so it obviously can't be directly associated with the 1960 film, but it really doesn't matter, the psychology of a serial killer won't change whether or not he has a cell phone.  After seeing the cast I really have no doubts.  The incredibly talented Freddie Highmore is playing Norman Bates and I think this dark role is a great career move for him.  Then we have Vera Farmiga who has given powerhouse performances for years (not to mention she is the sister of American Horror Story's Taissa Farmiga).  Vera will bring to life the mother who sent a man over the edge, giving life and history to a corpse in a rocking chair.  I really am looking forward to the series it has great potential.

WHO ARE YOU OSWIN OSWALD!?  Finally we'll be getting some answers starting March 30th.  Doctor Who will be back with his new companion Owsin Oswald... who has already died twice.  But you know what, Buffy died twice and she kicks ass, so I think Oswin will too!  We will also be seeing the Doctor's 50 year anniversary episode at some point during the season, so I know all you Whovians have high hopes to see some Doctors past on the show... I am praying we see David Tennant, even if he is in his human form from the other universe!  

But possibly what I'm most excited about is the confirmation that Neil Gaiman has penned a Cybermen episode and it's rumored that Warwick Davis will be starring in it.  Gaiman has already wrote one of the most popular Doctor Who episodes "The Doctor's Wife" where we meet the TARDIS who has been crammed into a living body.  If you haven't read a Neil Gaiman book, GO DO IT!  I especially recommend The Graveyard Book and American Gods (which HBO has recently bought the rights to!)

So, I'm still not totally sold on BBC's new show which premiere's the same night as Doctor Who. The more I research it, the more confusing I find it.  For one, the trailer for it doesn't really explain anything and in it's attempt to be cryptic it kind of loses me.  The IMDB description is a bit more interesting, A girl named Sarah steals the identity of a dead woman who looks just like her, only to find that she is one of many genetically identical individuals who are being assassinated one by one.  Sarah has to discover why somebody would duplicate her genes and who is after her clones.  Now that sounds a bit more interesting.  Since it airs the same night as Doctor Who, why not?

No.  Actually we do.  But the next fucking day after Doctor Who and Orphan Black, Game of Thrones FINALLY comes back.  According to the producers this is the year they have been waiting for.  I heard about something they called "blood wedding" and refused to listen to any more because I won't ruin any of this for myself.  I think this year might be a blood bath and nobody will be safe.  I don't even want to try to speculate on anything that will happen this season but I am so so excited!  I just hope none of my favorite characters kick the bucket (even though they probably will).

So, in conclusion, March 2013 is going to be epic... at least for nerds like me.