Monday, October 31, 2011

On Mashup Monday: Graveyard Smash edition

Okay, so I was kind of worried about this Halloween. Thanks to the new "papers, please" immigration law in Alabama, the apartment complex down the hill from me practically cleared out, and I was convinced we weren't going to get any trick-or-treaters this year. Not to get all serious or whatever.

We did get a few, though, and they were actually in costume, which was nice, and in non-shitty costumes, which was extra nice, and they all actually said, "Trick or treat!" instead of just mumbling and shoving their bags at us (with the exception of two really little kids who appeared too intimidated by The Boy to speak up). Also, a puppy dressed as a pirate (OMG, y'all). Also, lots of leftover candy. Also-also, Fanta Zero and Bacardi Coco. So a good night, all told.


VV Brown/Bobby "Boris" Pickett and the Crypt-Kickers - The Monster Mashup

Happy Halloween, y'all. And since I know at least one of you was wondering: Amy Pond.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

On TV shows that aren't meant to be watched as marathons: Glee

Okay, so the problem with Netflix is that when you find a show that's available in full seasons, the temptation exists to watch them, well, in full seasons. You tell yourself you're going to watch two episodes, and then it's late but there's time for one more, but that one was a two-parter and now you have to watch the second part, and before you know it you're asleep in front of the TV, dreaming that you're sitting at a piano and Lea Michele is circling you like a shark, and you wake up screaming.

And as you watch, little things start to jump out at you: Rachel says something obnoxious in three... two... one... There. Mr. Schue hands out an awkwardly conceived theme assignment in three... two... one... There. Accompanist(s) appear without warning in three... two... one... There. After-school-special moral in three... two... All things that would seem quasi-natural (natural for a musical-comedy TV show) one episode at a time become annoyingly predictable in sequence.

So no, Glee isn't meant to be watched as a marathon. There are just too many tropes that are hard to ignore when they're stacked on top of each other.

1. Finn and the drums. For some reason, Finn Hudson always ends up on the drums. Always. He's on the drums. He's singing and on the drums. He's singing and on the drums and then… walking away from the drums. That other guy is on the drums, and somehow Finn is back there playing too. And Finn knows all of two rhythms. Finn, just give John back his drumsticks and go back to singing in a tenor that's kind of disconcerting from a man of your size. Give him--Finn, give him the sti--Drop it. Drop it.

2. Poop notes. Lea Michele/Rachel Berry is passionate about her music. So passionate, in fact, that each high note has to be laid like an egg. Watch the way she squats down, squints her eyes, and wails out that note--it's equal parts "feeling the music" and "needing more roughage." (Now that Blaine has transferred to McKinley, we see more of Darren Criss's approach, which involves squinting his eyes, wrinkling his nose, and turning his head in the classic, "Jesus, God, who beefed?")

3. Asian kids are Asian. Things that Mike Chang and Tina Cohen-Chang (unrelated; dating; because all Asians are named "Chang," right?) talk about: Asian food, Asian couple's counseling, "Asian kiss[es]," getting an "Asian F," and Asian Santa Claus. And something about tea made from panda hair. Because they're Asian!

3a. Mercedes is big and black. And sassy! Had you noticed? She sings about weaves and tater-tots and says "hell to the no" a lot. (Also: Kurt is gay and wears designer clothes and sings songs written for girls!)

4. The Grand Piano Derby. Put Rachel, Finn--frankly, put any of the kids up next to the grand piano and they'll end up circling it over and over and over as they sing like they're looking for an opening to pounce. I'm just waiting for the day poor Brad finally gets uncontrollably queasy and barfs on Rachel's penny loafers.

5. Nude erections. Say it. "And now, some song weakly shoehorned into the theme of the week, performed by the Nude Erections." Say it out loud.

Glee remains fun--just in measured doses. Keep at least a week between episodes, and you might not notice the constant barrage of "Lauren Zizes is fat, but she thinks she's super hot!" jokes and find the character kind of cool and entertaining. And we have to give Sue Sylvester credit for her Tupperware-esque shelf life: Even an episode that's stale as vending-machine crackers can be perked up with a cheerleader cannon and a reference to her time in Special Forces.

Monday, October 10, 2011

On Mashup Monday: Just Wanna Tell You How I'm Feeling edition

Okay, so I don't suppose it's actually a Rickroll if you know he's coming. Otherwise, I'd have to save this for April Fool's Day. But this is no prank--no, the sweet, dulcet tones of Rick Astley telling what he is and is not going to do can be considered nothing but a gift. So you're welcome.

Rick Astley/Nirvana

Gotta make you understand...


Friday, October 07, 2011

On the Good, the Bad, and the Friday Not-Even-Random Ten: Bueller? Bueller? edition

Okay, so it was just a quick break. Making sure you'd miss me while I was gone. Did it work? [cricket sounds… cricket sounds…]

What's good (for the indeterminate period ending 10/7):

- The Nobel Peace Prize, this year awarded to three women: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee, and Tawakkul Karman. These leaders and activists demonstrate that women's issues aren't just some niche concern and that world peace can't exist without addressing the needs of fifty percent of the world population.

- See that last link? That's me, yo! Having a fancy-schmancy big-time blogging job is good.

- Nuts.

- Whatever lipstick Amy Pond has been wearing throughout her tenure on Doctor Who. I've taken to calling it Amy Pond Red, and I want it. If anyone can find a color match for Amy Pond Red, please let me know.

- Sally Hansen Tough as Nail Xtreme Wear nail polish in Gunmetal.

What's bad:

- Alabama's new immigration law. Listen, I recognize that illegal immigration is a problem. It's not like I'm completely ignorant of that and Pollyana-ish that it's problematic. But profiling drivers and demanding immigration papers at traffic stops, requiring schools to determine the immigration status of their students, and forbidding anyone to give an illegal immigrant a sandwich or an afternoon's work or a ride to the hospital is sick. As a nation, we're supposed to be better than that.

- Not having a parade to sing in when you're skipping work in celebration of the 25th anniversary of Ferris Bueller's Day Off.

The Ten:

1. Big Audio Dynamite, "Bad"
2. The Dream Academy, "Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want"
3. The Beatles, "Twist and Shout"
4. John Williams, "Star Wars (Main Title)"
5. Zapp, "Radio People"
6. The (English) Beat, "March of the Swivelheads"
7. Yello, "Oh Yeah"
8. Blue Room, "I'm Afraid"
9. The Flowerpot Men, "Beat City"
10. Wayne Newton, "Danke Schoen"

Your Ten, your favorite Ferris Bueller quotes, and your--Okay, screw it, find that lipstick for me and put the name of it in comments. Find it. NOW.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

On a squirrel trying to get a--wait, no, he seems to be okay

Okay, so there's nothing more shocking than public nudity, but some folks are just shameless. They just don't care. They don't care whose moments they're spoiling, or which impressionable eyes might be watching.

Shameful brazenness hidden behind the jump for the sake of the innocent.

Monday, October 03, 2011

On Mashup Monday: Back (I'm pretty sure) and better(ish) than ever edition

Or, We Apologize for Interrupting This Interruption

Okay, so I know I promised that my new blogging gig wouldn't come between us, and it now seems time to come to terms with something: I'm full of shit. Just haven't been trying hard enough. Really sorry about that. I'ma fix that. See? I'm posting right now! Does that count?

What if made an apology? What about a gift? What about a mashup gift? What about Notorious B.I.G. and Tom Petty?

Notorious B.I.G./Tom Petty - Mo' Free, Mo' Fallin'

Pair those overly-familiar guitars and that damn “can’t-eject-from-brain” hook with the radio-glossed truth-isms of Kelly Price and “Shiny Suit Era”-heyday tag-team of Ma$e and Biggie (sans The Artist Then Known As Puff Daddy) rapping about their rich man problems though, as those master mash-uppers The White Panda have done in their latest creation, and you’re talking something we could blast on repeat for days.

Marrying Biggie with White folks’ music will never lose it’s novelty awesomeness.
More to come, I promise. Thanks for hanging around.