Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Let's Put on a Schmo

I have full faith that this will be one of the best new shows of 2005.

Monday, September 27, 2004

Bloggers continue to obsess over fonts

I lowculture

But where were they when I was writing up my Fall Movie Preview?

Touching Tribute or Shameless Promotion?

We'll see.

He won't.

Sunday, September 26, 2004

I thought Hollywood was supposed to be run by a bunch of no-good, pinko-commie liberals...

...but three stars of this summer's high-rated mini-series, "The Republican National Convention," appeared on the season premiere of Law & Order.

The biggest star (not currently in charge of California) in all of Hollywood who the Republicans could find to (publicly) support Bush guest-starred as a lawyer.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg shot a cameo, reprising his role as the mayor of New York City.

And of course series regular, former senator and sometime Sam Elliot impersonator Fred Dalton Thompson was there, too.

If only Stephen Baldwin wasn't so busy...

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Who Derailed Roger Rabbit?

Here's an interesting piece I stumbled across that examines how personal feuds, money and one man's spiritual discovery can keep a promising film from hitting screens.

I love Spielberg, but this article makes him look pretty petty (granted, most of this stuff happened more than a decade ago). Then again, if Michael Eisner thought $100 million was too much for a sequel to Roger Rabbit but $200 million was a good deal for Dinosaur, maybe Roy Disney's got a point.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Theory of Relativity

Falling off the bandwagon

How long is a long time?

Matt Stone, apparently, thinks not long:

"I'm sick of hearing actors talk about s--t they don't know about," Stone says. "And we've been on the 'bash Michael Moore' bandwagon for a long time."

Well, it's only been two years since Stone appeared in Moore's Bowling for Columbine. Granted, that was before Moore won the Oscar, which is when I hopped on the "bash Michael Moore" bandwagon, but I would hardly say that one and a half years is "a long time."

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Emmy Autopsy

Well, I've gotta say I did pretty good (and so did The Emmys).

Seven of my "Will Win" predictions panned out, six of my "Potential Upset" predictions upset and a whopping eight of my "Should Win"s won. Plus Isabel Sanford did do very well in the annual death-applause-meter competition and I was half-right about the snide Joan Rivers joke (it was made by Conan O'Brien, and it was pretty funny). Granted, those "Should"s come from a pool of nominees that I was less than enthused about a few months ago, but even so, almost every winner would've been among my nominees (found here, here, here, here and here).

You'll be happy to know my T.V. survived the show intact. The biggest shock (and one of only two races I didn't call at all) had to be Allison Janney winning Best Actress in a Drama. Sure I would've preferred Jennifer Garner or Edie Falco, but I like Janney and The West Wing.

Best of all, Everybody Loves Raymond, Will & Grace and Curb Your Enthusiasm were all shut out for their lazy seasons. That, and hopefully the two people in the country who base their viewing choices on The Emmys will start watching Arrested Development (and hopefully they'll be Nielsen families). Oh, and Trump's ego takes yet another hit (somebody remove his belt and shoelaces!), which is always fun.

Lastly, did anybody else notice that the orchestra played louder than usual as soon as Jeffrey Wright started talking about AIDS? Much louder than when everybody else was rambling on with their list of names to thank.

Flipping Coins and Throwing Darts

Trying to get inside the minds of Emmy voters is like trying to figure out the rules to Forever Eden, The Benefactor or Mao – it just can’t be done. But that didn’t stop me from becoming the world’s only Forever Eden junkie, and I’ll be damned if I’m gonna let that stop me from making some Emmy predictions.

Before that, a few thoughts about the winners already announced at the Creative Arts Emmys:

I didn’t catch enough of the nominees for Guest Actor and Actress in a Drama Series to comment one way or the other, but in the Comedy Series categories, I guess they got it right. I liked John Turturro on Monk (much more than I liked any of his competition). I already gave my opinion of Laura Linney on Frasier, but compared to the rest of the nominees in this category, I’d begrudgingly give the Emmy to her.

The Outstanding Casting for a Comedy Series win by Arrested Development is very well deserved.

I haven’t had the pleasure of hearing “Because You are Beautiful” from the Lifetime Original Movie Until the Violence Stops, but I seriously doubt it’s as entertaining as the song from Futurama.

Speaking of which… I should know better than to disparage shows I’ve never seen, and I really have been meaning to catch Samurai Jack, but how could it possibly deserve the Emmy more than the final season of Futurama?

Interesting that the Outstanding Reality Program category is part of the Creative Arts Emmys (the Special Olympics of Emmys), while Outstanding Reality Competition Program is in the big leagues.

Finally, Frasier adds four wins to its already record tally, bringing it up to 35. We’ll have to see Sunday night where the final gauntlet is set for the next generation.

Now, on to the predictions:

The thing is, I’m not sure I fully understand how the voting at this stage works. I think it’s a panel of chosen judges who watch the submitted tapes (1 for Lead Actors, 2 for Supporting Actors and 8 for Series). I have no idea who these voters are or how many they are or what their demographics are. I don’t know if they have watched each series equally throughout the year and whether or not they bring that outside familiarity into their deliberations beyond the individual episodes submitted for consideration. I’m not sure how influenced they are by things like sentimentality, gossip and previous Emmy wins. I’m not nearly as familiar with the history of The Emmys as I am with that of The Oscars, so I can't gauge these things, and I don’t really care enough to research it fully. But I think there are a few key match-ups this year, of which the winner may provide hints.

Here goes nothing…

Outstanding Directing For A Comedy Series:
Will Win: Joe Russo & Anthony Russo, Arrested Development, “Pilot”
Should Win: Joe Russo & Anthony Russo, Arrested Development, “Pilot”
Potential Upset: Robert B. Weide, Curb Your Enthusiasm, “The Car Pool Lane”

The three Curb Your Enthusiasm nominationss will most likely split the vote, leaving a battle between a pilot and a series finale. Pilots tend to have a much better track record in the writing and directing categories, but that may just be because so many finales are such disappointments. Still, I think Emmy voters recognize the more daunting task of establishing the tone of a series from scratch as opposed to guiding it to home.

Outstanding Directing For A Drama Series:
Will Win: Tim Van Patten, The Sopranos, “Long Term Parking”
Should Win: Tim Van Patten, The Sopranos, “Long Term Parking”
Potential Upset: Walter Hill, Deadwood, “Pilot”

I know, I’m going against pretty much everything I said in the Comedy version of this category, but The Sopranos has frequently survived multiple noms in the writing category to emerge victorious, especially when one episode (such as “Long Term Parking”) had so much buzz surrounding it (“College,” “Employee of the Month,” “Whitecaps”). Surprisingly, along with its shutout in the Best Series competition, The Sopranos has never won an Emmy for direction (as with the Series rebuffs, it’s been mostly because of The West Wing, which isn’t represented here at all this year).

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series:
Will Win: Kelsey Grammar, Frasier
Should Win: Kelsey Grammar, Frasier
Potential Upset: John Ritter, 8 Simple Rules

I know it’s never a good idea to put my personal favorites in the “Will Win” slot, and Tony Shalhoub will probably prevail, but Ted Danson won for Cheers’ last season, so why shouldn’t Emmy’s prodigal son Kelsey?

This will be one of the contests that reveals something about the hearts and minds of Emmy voters. There is no artistic reason for Ritter to win, so if he does, it will be purely out of sentiment. If Grammar wins, it’ll be for a combination of artistic merit and sentimentality. If Shalhoub wins, they’re either judging it solely based on the work or they’re rubber-stamping last year’s winners through.

Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series:
Will Win: Anthony LaPaglia, Without a Trace
Should Win: James Gandolfini, The Sopranos
Potential Upset: James Spader, The Practice

Since I’ve only seen two episodes each of Without a Trace and the James Spader Practice, I’m at a bit of a loss to analyze these performances on my own. So I’ll take Gold Derby’s word for it, and also recognize that based on their repeated recognition of LaPaglia’s work on Frasier, they obviously like the guy. Though I still think Gandolfini could very well win his fourth Emmy.

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series:
Will Win: Sarah Jessica Parker, Sex and the City
Should Win: Sarah Jessica Parker, Sex and the City
Potential Upset: Jennifer Aniston, Friends

The Emmys seem to be more comfortable honoring performers for their final seasons than they do honoring the series themselves. Most recently, Helen Hunt picked up a win for coasting through her final season of Mad About You. Parker’s never won – but I have no idea if in the world of The Emmys, that’s a help or a hindrance. She has by far the most dramatic, emotional performance out of these five women, but it may not be comedic enough to win. Aniston has a good mix of emotion and comedy in the episode she submitted, but it’s not her strongest work of the last few years by a long shot. Another win for Patricia Heaton will probably be the “Throw my TV out the Window” moment of this awards show (there’s at least one in every awards show).

Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series:
Will Win: Jennifer Garner, Alias
Should Win: Jennifer Garner, Alias
Potential Upset: Amber Tamblyn, Joan of Arcadia

Most people are predicting yet another win for Edie Falco, and that is the safe bet. Not to sound callous, but her announcing (right around the time the Emmy nominations were announced) that she’d just triumphed over cancer is a lot more sympathetic than dumping your husband for your co-star, and then dumping him for Ben Affleck – if these things influence voting at all. But Falco was essentially relegated to a supporting role all season (I can’t remember how big her part was in the episode she submitted, but I don’t recall her ever owning an episode like she did in “Whitecaps”), and she has won three times already (again, not sure if this is a help or a hindrance). Garner on the other hand is movie-star-hot right now, but remains loyal to her TV gig. And the emotional scene she gets in the episode she submitted is killer. If she can’t win with that performance, she’ll never win.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series:
Will Win: Peter Boyle, Everybody Loves Raymond
Should Win: Jeffrey Tambor, Arrested Development
Potential Upset: David Hyde Pierce, Frasier

I’ve been predicting a win for Boyle for the last several seasons, yet he remains the only Raymond cast member without a statue (at least for his work on the show). But this season, he at least got two episodes that were centered somewhat around him where he had more to do than just sit in a chair cracking wise. He even got a little bit of emotion to play. So what the hell, I’ll predict a win for him again and watch it go to Brad Garrett.

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series:
Will Win: Steve Buscemi, The Sopranos
Should Win: Michael Imperioli, The Sopranos
Potential Upset: Michael Imperioli, The Sopranos

A movie star slumming it for a season wins every time (except with Robert Downey, Jr., who somehow actually helped Peter MacNicol finally win).

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series:
Will Win: Kim Cattrall, Sex and the City
Should Win: Kim Cattrall, Sex and the City
Potential Upset: Doris Roberts, Everybody Loves Raymond

Here’s another slot where outside events could very well dictate which way this Emmy swings.

A lot of predictors are claiming the three Sex girls will cancel each other out, but The Emmys aren’t like that nearly as much as The Academy Awards. Michael Richards and Laurie Metcalf repeatedly beat out Jason Alexander and Sara Gilbert respectively, as has Brad Garrett done to Peter Boyle for the past two years. And David Hyde Pierce, Rip Torn and Peter MacNicol each did it to their co-stars once. I believe (though I’m too lazy to fully research) the last time three Comedy (it happens much more frequently with Dramas) actors were nominated for the same show in the same category was in 1989 when Bea Arthur, Rue McClanahan and Betty White went head to head (and indeed, none of them won). However, in each of the three preceding years, one of the Girls triumphed over the other two, so while a win for Cattrall may be akin to a seven-ten split, it’s not impossible to pick up.

I think the biggest obstacle for her isn’t people voting for Kristin Davis, but her behavior off-screen (if that’s an issue). She’s rumored to not be a team player, and she blew an opportunity for redemption during her Emmy morning interview on E! by saying nothing about her co-stars’ nominations (as opposed to the very gracious Cynthia Nixon). But if the voters are judging based solely on acting, I don’t see how they can reward anyone else (if Roberts wins, my TV may not make it to the announcement of Best Actress).

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series:
Will Win: Drea de Matteo, The Sopranos
Should Win: Drea de Matteo, The Sopranos
Potential Upset: Janel Moloney, The West Wing

The closest thing to a sure bet this year (aside from Garry Shandling making a snide joke about Joan Rivers’ absence on the red carpet and Isabel Sanford doing very well in the annual death-applause-meter competition).

Outstanding Comedy Series:
Will Win: Sex and the City
Should Win: Arrested Development
Potential Upset: Arrested Development

Back in the 80s, rewarding freshman comedies was all the rage (Taxi, Cheers, The Cosby Show, The Golden Girls, The Wonder Years), but not since Frasier have The Emmys bestowed this prize on a first year comedy series. In fact, Arrested is only the fourth series since Frasier to even be nominated in this category for its first at-bat (Friends, Ally McBeal and Sex and the City being the others). So will Emmy embrace its past by rewarding its future (Arrested), or will it just reward the past (Sex) or the past its prime (Everybody Loves Raymond)? I feel it’s a legitimate toss-up between Arrested and Sex (I think that both serialized shows will benefit from having a captive audience for eight whole episodes – especially since their competition will be hard-pressed to find eight decent episodes from their most recent seasons), so Raymond will probably win again just to spite me, but I’m still predicting (barely) Sex to be the first comedy since Barney Miller to win the Emmy for its farewell season.

Outstanding Drama Series:
Will Win: The Sopranos
Should Win: The Sopranos
Potential Upset: C.S.I. Crime Scene Investigation

Last year people said that there would be rioting if The West Wing won again, however, when it came to fruition, there was little more than quiet grumbling. This year, though, there might actually be some overturned cars if Wing wins its fifth consecutive Best Series award. But the only way I see that happening is if the election year’s political climate overshadows the declining (though not nearly as horrible as critics exaggerate) quality of the Sorkin-less show. Yet whereas last year, The Sopranos had an equally disappointing season preventing it from finally winning, this year they should have no such problem.

Outstanding Reality Competition Program:
Will Win: The Apprentice
Should Win: Survivor
Potential Upset: The Amazing Race

The Apprentice was this year’s hot buzz reality show, and even though Donald Trump’s about as classy as a gold-plated apartment, the show itself is often described as classy (relative to dreck like Trading Spouses, sure, but classy nonetheless). Maybe Trump can melt his Emmy down and do some painting.

Outstanding Writing For A Comedy Series:
Will Win: Mitchell Hurwitz, Arrested Development, “Pilot”
Should Win: Neil Goldman, Scrubs, “My Screwup”
Potential Upset: Christopher Lloyd and Joe Keenan, Frasier, “Goodnight, Seattle”

As with the directing category, pilots tend to do well, though I should mention that Larry Sanders finally pulled off wins for its sign-off episode. The writers may wish to memorialize a series that was at one time a juggernaut in this category (four wins plus four nominations in Frasier’s first seven seasons vs. one win plus five nominations in Sex’ first five seasons gives Frasier a slight edge). Then again, “My Screwup” is a bit of a “trick episode” like Malcolm in the Middle’s winning “Bowling” episode, so it could go anywhere. But I’ll stand by Arrested.

Outstanding Writing For A Drama Series:
Will Win: Terence Winter, The Sopranos, “Long Term Parking”
Should Win: Terence Winter, The Sopranos, “Long Term Parking”
Potential Upset: David Milch, Deadwood, “Pilot”

The Sopranos has always cleaned up in this category, no matter how many of its scripts are competing amongst themselves, and “Long Term Parking” is the clear standout this season.

We'll see how I did Monday morning. And we'll see if I still have a TV.

Friday, September 17, 2004

Losin' It

"This chump is the biggest star in the universe?"

I just watched a re-run of Letterman with Tom Cruise on, and it was either one of the best segments I've ever seen on there, or one of the worst. I'm really not sure. But it was bizzare.

Through the entire interview, there seemed to be a slight disconnect between the two, which happens from time to time with Dave, and Tom was laughing at a random things - a little odd, but nothing too strange. But then, when he gets to telling this story about how he almost killed a guy when he was flying by depriving him of oxygen, Cruise just totally lost it. He couldn't get the story out, because he was laughing so much. He was crying. At one point, he even hocked an accidental loogie, which only caused him to lose it even more. Letterman was amused, but not nearly as much as Cruise.

Anyway, this was from a few weeks ago, but I don't remember hearing anything about this incident in other media. Sure it wasn't as outlandish or embarrassing as Farrah Fawcett's breakdown or Quentin Tarantino wasted off his ass on Leno, but the sheer magnitude of the star at hand would seem to have made it slightly buzz-worthy.

On another note...

I can't remember ever seeing two late night talk shows on the same network re-running appearances by the same personality back-to-back on the same night. But tonight, Dax Shepard was interviewed on both The Late Show With David Letterman and the late Late Late Show With Craig Kilborn. Either it was a wacky theme night at CBS late night, or somebody wasn't paying attention.

Monday, September 13, 2004

I See B.S.

What is The (brown) Eye spewing?

There has to be something more going on here than either side is letting on.

First, I should admit that I’m an unabashed Madonna fan. I caught her Re-Invention show back in May. The concert was an astonishing sensory overload that could never be convincingly translated to video. However, since there was much more going on than my brain and field of vision could possibly absorb, I was looking forward to seeing it televised.

Now, it’s hard to believe that these two parties would enter into such a pricey (reportedly $10 million) deal without first settling on the terms of the broadcast. Say what you will about Madonna, but she’s known for being a savvy, detail-oriented businesswoman. Even though she says that she doesn’t watch any television, she and her business people must have some familiarity with the medium – enough to know that to assume that a broadcast network would just air two and a half hours of commercial-free programming is as much mishigas as her fellow Michigander thinking that a network might air Fahrenheit 9/11 before the election.

If they had any realistic hope of these unrealistic demands being met, they must have known that they would have to get something on paper. As I recall, when negotiating the broadcast rights to Jurassic Park, there was a concrete stipulation that NBC also air Schindler’s List without commercial interruption. While airing Schindler’s List sans advertisements is much more of a no-brainer (though still unprecedented at the time) than a pro-bono broadcast of a Madonna concert, even this had to be agreed upon before money changed hands.

In addition, considering some of the more controversial, politically-charged elements of the Re-Invention show, Madonna and her people must have had doubts before signing with FCC-beleaguered, conservative, The Reagans-banishing CBS that the concert would be shown uncut. If they didn't seek some sort of guarantee, then they were being shockingly naive.

What’s also suspect is the timing of this announcement, just days before her final two tour dates. This doesn’t allow much time for another outlet to swoop in and record the concert. CBS could pass it along to one of their Viacom siblings (MTV, VH1, Showtime), which would seem to be a better fit – though I suspect that if that were going to happen, it would’ve been mentioned in CBS’ press release. HBO, which aired her last three concert specials to very high ratings, would also be a logical alternative. They reportedly dropped out of the bidding (presumably because CBS was offering such a high figure), but I wonder if any corporate bad blood between Madonna and HBO parent company Time Warner stands in the way of that alliance being reformed.

Regardless of how this suspicious business abortion came to be, the real losers (what’s $10 million to Madonna when artistic integrity is at stake?) will be her fans. Our only hope is that somebody records one of her Lisbon concerts, if only so that it can be released on DVD (preferably with the multiple-angle feature enabled so we can take it all in). Come on, there must be somebody out there who still wants to make a buck.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Fun With Numbers!

When numbers lie

When you narrow the parameters enough, any performance can be record-breaking. What’s telling is how far publicists are willing to reach for a record to be broken. NBC must’ve been feeling pretty desperate to reach for this one:

NBC notes that "Joey" gathered the largest audience among the advertiser-friendly 18-to-49-year-old age group of any other entertainment show since May. It was also the best-rated 8 p.m. comedy premiere for NBC in 14 years.

Putting aside the obviously pathetic first “record” (if Joey couldn’t beat summer re-runs of C.S.I. and fresh Method & Red, it’d really be in trouble), the second one may sound impressive at first, until you look at all the memorable comedies Joey had to top to come in second to The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.

Remember these gems? The Adventures of Mark and Brian, Here and Now, Saved by the Bell: The College Years, The Mommies, Something Wilder, The Tony Danza Show, The Michael Richards Show, Emeril, In-Laws and of course, Whoopi.

That’s not a selective list. That’s every freshman half-hour comedy NBC has scheduled for 8 p.m. since 1991 [in the fall, since I couldn’t find mid-season schedule grids]. Among these classics whose premieres the spin-off of one of the most popular series of the last decade managed to surpass, the longest lasting was The Mommies, with a whopping 38 episodes! That’s a whole season and a half! Congrats, NBC, you’ve really outdone yourself!

But wait, their publicists are working overtime, spinning straw into yet another record:

NBC says that with a 7.5 rating among adults 18-49, "Joey" had the highest demographic rating for a premiering 8 p.m. series on any network since Sept. 16, 1996 (that would be CBS' "Cosby," if you're scoring at home).

Again, sounds impressive. Then you look at Joey’s competition for that title. In addition to The Tony Danza Show, The Michael Richards Show, Emeril, In-Laws and Whoopi, that includes the ABC, CBS and FOX (why bother with WB and UPN?) series: Two of a Kind, Living in Captivity, Ally, Bette, The Ellen Show, Bram and Alice and 8 Simple Rules – a(n ever so) slightly more distinguished crop, but notice Joey could only manage to top them in the 18-49 demographic.

The point of this is not to beat up on Joey. I actually liked the pilot. I even laughed (not out loud, but in my head, which is more than I do with most sit-coms). I had a lot of the same problems that most people have had, but I’ll keep watching and I hope it succeeds. I was just amused by NBC’s proud assertion regarding its performance relative to other 8 p.m. comedy premieres, knowing just how rare it is for a network to lead-off a night with an unproven commodity.

For some reason though, the press seems to be focusing much more on the not-all-that-bad ratings for Joey than on the truly disappointing numbers The Apprentice 2 brought in. Granted, both shows had to deal with competition from football and the fact that the season hasn’t really started yet – but it’s not going to get much easier with Survivor and C.S.I. around the bend, and that prized 18-49 demographic audience Joey pulled in may be chipped away by The O.C. more than expected. We can only hope that this (ever so slightly) cools The Donald’s ego.

But NBC still has something to brag about: Joey was the highest rated premiere of a sit-com spin-off starring Matt LeBlanc ever, trumping even Top of the Heap and Vinnie & Bobby!

Monday, September 06, 2004

Lost in Translation

The Surreal Life has lost something in its move from The WB to VH1. The first two seasons were – much to my surprise - among the most enjoyable reality series ever. I found that it didn’t matter how lackluster the list of “stars” was, what mattered was who they were in the house. Yes, the producers often tried to embarrass the “stars,” and yes, I often laughed at them – but I also grew to care about these real people who were once celebrities before they were punch lines. Surreal Life was one of the few reality series that could frequently make me laugh out loud, and get me emotionally involved – all at the same time.

Right off the bat, there appear to be several problems with The Surreal Life 3, now on VH1. First, they’ve gone graphics and sound effects happy, trying to put an extra layer of cheese on moments that don’t need them. Second, most of the cast members seem to have come into the house to perform, not be themselves. Part of the joy of the first two seasons was seeing people let their personas fade and just be regular (if slightly quirky) people. Third, they’ve overdone it with the irritating/unlikable cast members – sure Season 1 had Corey Feldman and Season 2 had Traci Bingham, but half of this house has already worn out their welcome – Jordan Knight, Flavor Flav and Brigitte Nielsen. They're creating a mean-spirited vibe when in the past, the show has ultimately had a positive one.

Now, I may wind up eating my words by the end of the season. In the past, the series has gotten better and the “characters” have continually grown on me throughout as the producers have shown more dimensions to their personalities and the celebrities start letting their guards down with each other. But of the three season premieres, this one was by far the weakest.

Not to say that there weren’t many fantastic moments. I particularly enjoyed Dave Coulier’s response to Jordan Knight’s comment about getting in a hot tub with the Olsen Twins [but Dave, before you get all high and mighty, remember that Alanis Morissette was only 18 when she was going down on you in that theater, and Jordan’s the same age now as you were then, so, uh, cut… it… out, and while you’re at it, get a decent haircut, man, you’re on national television]. Oh, and Charo and Ryan Starr look to be developing a sweet relationship similar to Tammy Faye Baker and Trashelle’s last year – only with less Bible-thumping and more cha-cha shaking. So I’ll keep on watching and I’ll keep an open mind.

Hot Blogs, Get Your Hot Blogs!

My favorite movie columnist David Poland (I know, I reference him far too often, but I dig his insight, even though he sometimes tends to beat dead horses senseless - ironically, in this case, about people beating a dead horse senselessly) has joined the blogosphere.


Thursday, September 02, 2004

It's a... Grouch!

"Have a yucky day!"

The Pop Culture Petri Dish has spawned its first spin-off blog to cover the Academy Awards race. Check out the first post at The Oscar Grouch, and stay tuned for updates in the near future.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

And the Pick of the Litter (**shudder**) is...

This was another tough competition to judge. The entrant with the most intentionally hilarious responses was Alex... however, when plugged into the Catwoman: Mad Libs story, they created a not-so-hilarious story, intentional or otherwise.

All of the stories had their merits...

Reigning champion of Pop Culture Petri Dish contests dipped in chocolate eerily (and unintentionally) provided the dyslexically transposed phrase: "They went to the snack BRA," while thanks to Jason the Asian, I can now fantasize about "fluffy cotton SORORITY PLEDGES!"

But the winning story was co-written by Drew, so The Official Pop Culture Petri Dish Gold Star goes out to him. Congratulations, Drew! And good luck persuading Warner Bros. to let you write Catwoman Returns! Here's his version of the story [SPOILER ALERT for the bizzaro version of Catwoman]:


Patience and Tom Lone had an APATHETIC time on their date. They went to the coolest carnival at the BIG TUNA, TX, where they played lots of NARCISSISTIC games. Patience’s favorite carnival game was knocking over milk bottles with a WAD OF CHEWING GUM – she was so good at it, she won a huge, stuffed MARMOT and an autographed picture of MEKHI PFEIFER! Then they walked over to the brightly lit Ferris JANGLY KEYCHAIN, where they AUTO-ASPHYXIATED in and traveled up to the very top, which was AT LEAST 32 feet! Then they went to the snack UVULA, where they LAMENTED gooey snacks like caramel PAD THAI and fluffy cotton OODLES OF NOODLES. On the way home, Patience and Tom walked hand in BACK OF THE KNEE and planned their next fun date – a trip to the A FILTHY BACKALEY!

Thanks again to everyone who entered! You can read the other completed stories in the Comments section...

Episode IV: No Hope

Movie City News introduces their link to this article with a pretty clever headline:

Will It Happen Before Ford Needs An IV?
Aussie Paper Oversells Still Unscripted Indy IV

The article itself includes this cringe-inducing quote from John "Sallah" Ryhs-Davies:

"George Lucas had reservations about the script and he said, 'The only way I can express my reservations is making another pass at the script myself.'"

Ugh. I think we all know how this is going to turn out.