Saturday, January 24, 2009
- Make sure to configure the board so that all movies showing at your theatre appear on the board, so as to avoid questions from folks about whether particular movies are playing there. If necessary, use the boards to alternate lists of movies. Yes, it would have been easy enough to check a newspaper/the Internet/a cell phone to see if what a patron wanted to see was playing at that particular theatre or the other one down the block, but you should not overestimate your patrons' competency. In particular, do not have tons of blank lines on the board when movies are not listed.
- As soon as a movie has sold out, alert the appropriate people, and promptly have them flip the switch to show that movie as sold out. This will avoid folks getting up to the window and asking to see a movie for which you have already sold all available tickets, and give them a chance to decide on an alternative while in line rather than while standing at the ticket window.
Here, Felix Gaeta -- with a set up of some big action to come -- is in a headlock with the injustice of his own actions. Toadying up to the Cylons on New Caprica, Letting himself get shot on Starbuck's walkabout. He needs redemption from somewhere. I don't recall him being a believer in the Gods, nor in the Cylons, nor in the Church of Baltar. So, now he's going to try to find redemption in this world. Interesting is that, throughout the series, he's taken comfort from being within a chain of command. On New Caprica, of course, but also when the Old Man was in a coma and Tigh was frakking things up. And now, he seems quite ready to bust out of that singular solace to get that redemption.
What's on the other side of the equation? The future of humanity. The only thing that's kept him together. I'd hate to see him ride the lead express like Dee, but I don't see how this ends well for him. But, if he stays in character, I don't think he'll ask himself the question again. It's all about Felix, because that's all he has left.
It wouldn't suck if Felix sang a few bars about it, either.
Also, comment away about the complex life in the maternity ward, the less complex relationship of the Admiral and the President, and just how the frak do they bring Gaius Baltar back into the mix before this is all over.
Friday, January 23, 2009
This seating chart (PDF) can help you get your bearings; if you're looking for me, I'm obscured by the tree in front of the reflecting pool on the far-right side of the screen in the infamous Purple Section. TPE has suggested, quite rightly, that the only thing which could make this better would be the ability for all of us to annotate the photo to indicate who's where. In the meantime, just tell us what you see.
In other tv/doctor news, George Clooney is making a final trip to County General.
This, sadly, is not going to be that. Instead, it's "an origin story that reveals how Tom and Jerry first meet and form their rivalry before getting lost in Chicago and reluctantly working together during an arduous journey home." Yuck.
I'm also going to guess that, understandably, Mammy Two Shoes is out.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Martin has won Grammy Awards for his comedy recordings and for his banjo work on Earl Scruggs' 75th Anniversary album.... Martin will also release his first full-length music album, "The Crow: New Songs for the Five-String Banjo" on January 27, 2009. The bluegrass-flavored album has been 45 years in the making, and will feature special vocal appearances by Mary Black, Vince Gill, Tim O'Brien, Dolly Parton and musicians Earl Scruggs, Pete Wernick and Tony Trischka.
And we've met the kids, the parents and the aunt, but it turns out, perhaps the most colorful member of the Campbell clan is granny, who, accompanied her son and daughter-in-law to court recently only after sneaking a few shots of schnapps--and this despite De Fuhrer being a famous teetotaler.
And huge, huge, ups to the coders and designers at the Voice, who for the first time have all 1,685 albums and 1,762 singles listed on individual-view Web pages (please, take note Time and EW!)
ETA (1): Complete list now available.
ETA (2): Some analysis:
- Complete snub for Gran Torino, with Richard Jenkinis taking the Eastwood slot in best actor. Also substantially snubbed is Revolutionary Road, with only a Supporting Actor nod for Michael Shannon.
- Even though Winslet was pushed for Supporting Actress in The Reader and Lead in Revolutionary Road, her sole nomination is Lead Actress for Reader, which is the surprise 5th nominee for best picture.
- Slumdog Millionaire and Doubt kind of mirror each other. Slumdog has nominations in a bunch of categories, including picture, director, screenplay, 2 songs, and score, but no acting nominations. Doubt has all four principals nominated for their performance (Phillip Seymour Hoffman is supporting) and a screenplay nomination, but is not in the big dance and has no technical nominations.
- Complete match for picture and director nominees for the first time in a while, with Stephen Daldry nominated for The Reader where Chris Nolan was expected to be in.
- Big snubs in the song category, where they only nominated three this year ("Jai Ho" and another from Slumdog, and "Down to Earth"), include the Miley Cyrus song from Bolt and anything and everything from HSM3.
- Among the odder films which can now bear the "Academy Award nominee" banner? Wanted (Best Sound Editing), Tropic Thunder (Best Supporting Actor, RDJ), Iron Man (several technical nods), and Hellboy 2 (Best Makeup).
There followed an impressive edition of Restaurant Wars (in a bad way). The leadership vacuum was more or less perfect on both teams. Radhika could not even commit fully to her supremely correct decision to focus on the front of the house and let Jamie take charge of the kitchen, and Leah was apparently unable to bone a fish much less cook one. When the judges sent that plate back it should have been the end of the world. Simply astounding that a Reverse Marshall Plan of Southern European Charm and Northern European Execution could rescue Humpty and Dumpy from their own distracted semi-competence and send the judges to the diners’ review cards for a decision. Fabio, man, he could sell flashlights to the blind.
Finally, speaking of monkey ass on a clam shell (and you knew we would), less is certainly more in the Toby Notbourdain department.
That’s all I’ve got. Likely more than enough.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Just a few miscellaneous comments and questions before a flash of white light carries us into the comments:
(1) Faraday's record player explanation was a nice touch, given this show's propensity for showing record players in its season premieres.
(2) Given Richard and Locke's conversation tonight, why did Richard leave so angrily when he visited young Locke last season?
(3) Does Hurley really not know about hot pocket sleeves?
(4) Did no one warn Josh Holloway that he was going to spend a lot of time shirtless this season and that he might want to buy an Ab Roller for use during the off season?
This is going to be a fun season.
- The Love Guru--Worst picture, worst actor, worst actress, 2 worst supporting actor (Troyer and Kingsley), worst director, and worst screenplay
- The Happening--Worst picture, worst actor, worst director, and worst screenplay
- In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale--Worst picture, worst supporting actor, worst supporting actress, worst screen couple, worst screenplay, worst director, and worst career achievement.
- Disaster Movie and Meet The Spartans--Jointly nominated for worst picture, worst supporting actress (Carmen Electra for both and Kim Kardashian for Disaster Movie only), worst director, and worst screenplay.
In my case, I think you know it -- I want recognition for Rachel Getting Married beyond Anne Hathaway's performance and for screenplay, best supportings and, yes, Best Picture. I want The Dark Knight in the Best Picture mix because it's time for Big and Fun to be recognized again, and it's a hell of a good movie. As for a curve ball, I'm just going to say that Jeff Bridges still doesn't have the number of nominations which would be commensurate with his talent, and since Heath Ledger's winning Best Supporting Actor anyway, why not throw Bridges a nomination for Iron Man?
PILOT: So, we have a little time and the auto-pilot’s on. How ‘bout you tell me about the island?
JACK: Well, we lived on the beach, mostly, except for the time we lived in the cave with the skeletons and the time we lived in the secret underground bunker with the lending library and the time we lived in the village built by the scientists that the people who don’t age gassed to death with the help of their leader, my third nemesis, the nebbishy con man with spine cancer, which we took over when the freighter people came to kill everybody. We ate wild boar and fish, and then the supplies stashed in the storeroom of the bunker, and then the scientists who the people who don’t age gassed to death were nice enough to replenish our food by airdrop, but only once, but that was okay, because the people who don’t age had some agriculture that we completely ignored while we stood in front of their refrigerators with the doors open. And I saw my dead dad just hanging around on the island, which I didn’t think too much about because I was preoccupied with the smoke monster and the baby stealing and the mind games with the nebbishy guy and my TOTALLY AWESOME tattoo which got my ass kicked in Thailand and the power struggle with my second nemesis, the formerly paralyzed bald survivalist mystic, who was, frankly, nuts.
PILOT: Nuts, you say?
JACK: Yeah, man of faith, thought the bunker wanted you to punch Hurley’s lotto numbers into the computer every few hours, and I was like, it’s a GAME, you lose, sucker.
JACK: So he finally came around after the shipwrecked sailor who lived in the bunker for two years told him that you had to punch the numbers, which obviously meant you didn’t have to punch the numbers. Which, come to think of it, I guess he was right in the first place. Missed the numbers, cratered the whole freaking bunker, knocked the guy who used to live there right into last Tuesday. Literally.
Oh, I forgot to mention that my dead father came back and kidnapped my secret sister.
PILOT: Um, okay. So … happy to be getting back?
JACK: Yeah, you know, I’m looking forward to having the time to grow a beard.
PILOT: How about you, freckles?
KATE: Don’t call me that.
KATE: You know, I’m a convict. I didn’t even want to get off the island. I killed my boyfriend.
PILOT: So what was so good about the island?
KATE: Well, when my boyfriend and I …
PILOT: The dead guy?
KATE: What? No, Jack. My boyfriend and I had a good thing going on the beach and in the cave and in the bunker, except for everybody dying and the smoke monster. And then our friend led us into a trap, even though we knew it was a trap, but it was okay, because while we were captured I got it on with my boyfriend in a cage …
PILOT: With Jack?
KATE: What? No, Sawyer. Jack was watching, though. Anyway, I got back together again with Jack, kind of, but he was really into this doctor that the gassy people kidnapped from Oregon, and then I got back together again with Sawyer, and then I left him for Jack. I forgot to mention that I had a nice proper date with a new dress and dinner on the beach …
PILOT: With Jack or Sawyer?
KATE: What? No, with the nebbishy spine cancer con man who loves me – KEEP UP. But it didn’t go well, which is why I ended up having sex in the cage in the zoo.
PILOT: There was a zoo on the island?
KATE: What? No, different island. The polar bears on our island were free-range.
PILOT: Well, at least I understand how you have a baby.
KATE: What? No, he’s not mine. The island is actually a contraceptive, THANK GOD.
PILOT: Okay, forget it. You, what’s your story?
SUN: Pretty simple, really. I was trying to run away from my emotionally abusive hit-man husband, but he was on the plane with me when we crashed. So I pretended not to speak English for a while, and then I got pregnant and he’s really just a sweetheart, really. Just my luck, though, he missed the helicopter when he and our friend who killed our other friends and later went undercover on the murder-freighter on behalf of the nebbishy guy took too long unsuccessfully trying to defuse the giant bomb. So I’m going home to buy my asshole dad’s conglomerate with funding from the guy responsible for blowing up my beloved ex-soon-to-be-ex-husband, the father of the long-lost lover of our time-traveling sailor friend who was living in the secret bunker.
PILOT: Is this a joke?
HURLEY: No, all of the jokes around here are mine.
PILOT: Oh, great, tell me a good one.
HURLEY: What has two thumbs and is dead?
PILOT: I give up.
HURLEY: My girlfriend and my best friend and the French paramilitary lady and her daughter and Arzt. Wait, that’s eight-to-ten thumbs.
HURLEY: But at least I got to hotwire a 20-years-abandoned VW bus, because 1970s VW electrical systems never go bad when untended in humid weather, and drove it over Big Tom, the murderous teleporting gay non-aging gasser who sometimes wears a fake beard and wool cap that he keeps in a locker in the abandoned medical and child-care bunker.
PILOT: Okay, last guy. What’s your story?
SAYID: I tortured a shitload of people.
PILOT: I meant on the island.
SAYID: I tortured a shitload of people.
PILOT: That all?
SAYID: Got tortured.
PILOT: Well, new day, and all that. What are you going to do now?
SAYID: Go to work for a guy I tortured.
PILOT: Doing what?
SAYID: Torturing, mostly.
PILOT: Say, look at the time, gotta get back and check on the autopilot.
JACK: Wait, what did we miss when we were on the island for a flexible length of time?
PILOT: Every financial institution you’ve ever heard of is out of business, America fell in love with a gay cowboy movie, and we elected a Black college professor President instead of a war hero.
JACK: We find your story implausible.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
That's all I've got. Commence your Big Bang Theory threadjack now.
Subway: Blue, Orange, and Green Lines are closed due to congestion. All stops on Red Line are closed except Friendship Heights. All stops on Yellow Line are open but expect 43-hour delays.
Buses: All buses are currently full but will make regular stops to facilitate market trading in bus seats.
Cars: No autos may start or stop. Autos traveling prior to the start-stop ban will be grandfathered with proper documentation. Traffic police will be enforcing strict all-lanes-must-turn-right rules at all intersections.
Pedestrians: All streets whose names are numbers, letters of the alphabet, States of the Union admitted prior to January 3, 1896, Presidents, wealthy persons, or legal documents are closed to pedestrian traffic.
Bicycles: Three-day bicyclist hunting licenses will be issued for a nominal fee at the Department of the Interior. Hunters bagging undersized bicyclists will be fined.
Other: We have reports of inauguration attendees attempting to travel on clouds of euphoria. We strongly discourage this. Expectations are spiking dangerously high today and could create both obstructions and severe puncture risks.
But more importantly, if "Stranger in a Strange Land" -- which, universally, is (considered) the worst episode we ever produced -- had not been produced, we would not have been able to convince the network that, "This is the future of the show: how Jack got his tattoos. Everything we've been saying for two years about what's to come, is now all here on the screen. You argued that an hour of Matthew Fox in emotionally-based conflicts, it doesn't matter what the flashback story is, it'll be fine. But now that we're doing his ninth flashback story, you just don't care."
So yes, all our chatter around here concerning the show's pacing was accurate, and I suspect that we are in for a great ride over the remaining two seasons. Read the whole interview, if you have a few minutes -- it's a good one.
(I do wish that Alan had harnessed the power of the ThingThrowers when formulating his list of questions for the lightning round -- personally, I would love to know whether we're ever going to get any explanation regarding the kidnapping of Waaaaalt and what Ms. Klugh was doing with him over on the four-toed side of the island. Feel free to suggest other yes-or-no "will X ever be revisited" topics for Alan's next fireside chat with Mr. Lindelof.)
Video currently unavailable, but inevitable. ETA: video.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Part of the AV Club's 70 Songs About American Presidents, a list you should feel free to comment or or supplement, including but not limited to noting Twisted Sister's Jay Jay French modifying an earlier hit to create "I Want Barack."
"Both magazines have moved away from the health and pop culture covers that were so prevalent in the past," Kurtz notes, and Time's Rick Stengel is explicit about his goals: to "make Time lead the conversation, not follow it. To speak stronger with a point of view. To mix more analysis with reporting. Not to ask questions, but to answer them on the cover." Do you still subscribe to either? Rely on them?
Sunday, January 18, 2009
- 2003--"Come Away With Me" over "The Rising" and the Dixie Chicks' "Home."
- 2002--"O Brother Where Art Thou" soundtrack over "All That You Can't Leave Behind."
- 1997--Celine Dion's "Falling Into You" over The Fugees' "The Score," "Odelay," and "Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness"
- 1995--"The Bodyguard" soundtrack over "Automatic For The People"
- 1992--Natalie Cole's "Unforgettable, With Love" over "Out of Time," "Luck of the Draw," and "Rhythm of the Saints."
- 1985--Lionel Richie's "Can't Slow Down" over "Purple Rain"
- 1981--"Christopher Cross" over "The Wall"
- 1963--Vaughn Meader's "The First Family" over "Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music"
ETA: Clearly, I posted mere minutes too early, as the inexplicable trio of Sheryl Crow, Will.I.Am, and Herbie Hancock attempting to channel Bob Marley just created a new nadir in the broadcast. (Contrast with the Taylor/Legend/Nettles "Shower The People," which was much more effective.)
This was a flawed, lucky team playing with house money that had no business being in the playoffs in the first place. Today, the Cardinals had one great half, and we had one great half, only their half was a little bit better, and their borderline-in Hall of Fame quarterback made a few more plays than our own sturdy signal caller. It's a shame that it took so long for the Eagles to figure out how to pressure Warner (while the Cardinals were harassing McNabb all day) and had tackling issues for most of the day, but that's life.
No anger, no depression. As I wrote after the 2006 season (the loss at New Orleans), "I'm only asking for one title. (And a Democratic president on 1-20-09.)"
Well, we've got that title, and we'll have that President as scheduled. Pitchers and catchers report in twenty-seven days.
As long as we're talking Armisen, discussion of last night's "hey! I think Rosario Dawson is Latina!"episode of SNL is welcome. Enjoyed the "Aladdin: Ten Years Later" and "La Policia Mexicana" skits, but overall a weak episode. Line of the night goes to Weekend Update: "On Thursday, New York water taxis accomplished in half an hour what the creators of Lost haven't been able to do in five seasons."