Friday, December 24, 2004

LEARNING FROM EACH OTHER, WHILE WE DO OUR THING: Maybe it's the spirit of The Holiday Season. Maybe it's the residue of too much lambic. Maybe it's just nostalgia. But, most likely, it's just from a profound sense of gratitude.

It is hereby ordered that no criticism of the film Fat Albert evermore appear on this blog.

Yes, I know, it's gotten some harsh reviews. Okay, most of them.

But if there's any living American comedian who's earned a lifetime pass on his creative works on account of the combination of his good work and good deeds, it's William H. Cosby, Jr., Ed.D.

(Okay, fine, criticize his political activism if you dare, but this is a kid's movie we're talking about.)

I'm still awfully fond of the old Fat Albert cartoons. And the Brown Hornet. And Picture Pages, picture pages, open up your picture pages . . . and then there's The Cosby Show.

I've got a soft spot for the guy. So, too, does the WaPo's Desson Thomson. So until there's a Leonard: Part VII, save your haterade for those who deserve it, and leave Bill alone.

Who gets your free lifetime pass?

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

ON SECOND THOUGHT, STAY MISSING: You know that item we posted regarding the career disappearance of Natasha Lyonne?

Well, she's been located, alright. Maybe twice.

The American Pie curse continues . . . .
MR. ROBOTO AND THE INFINITE SADNESS: Dennis DeYoung (former lead singer of Styx, a band that peaked in 1979) and Billy Corgan (the guy who sang "1979") apparently have a little too much time on their hands these days. How else can you explain this note from today's Chicago Sun-Times?
Two of Chicago's best known rockers -- Billy Corgan and Dennis DeYoung -- will team up for the first time to sing a Christmas song live on WGN-Channel 9's morning newscast during the 8 a.m. hour Thursday.
I believe WGN's news is broadcast is on the nationwide superstation feed, so just remember that's Central Time.

Word is that if the pairing is successful, an entire series of washed-up Chicago-area '70s rockers will be teamed with washed-up Chicago-area '90s rockers for duets. Look for Peter Cetera and Liz Phair, Kevin Cronin and Nash Kato, and others coming to your morning news in 2005.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

THAT'S NOT A WHOLE LOTTA CAR: Tonight on TAR6: an ending the likes of which you've never seen before in an episode. And I'm not sure that I liked it.

Let me ask you this: did you find that car challenge fair? All this, and the merits of male shirtlessness and oddly-placed bunches, are open to your commentary.
A LITTLE FREE LEGAL ADVICE: If you were thinking of asserting that the Housing and Rent Act of 1947 is "an incubator and hatchery of swarms of bureaucrats to be quartered as storm troopers on the people" in violation of the Third Amendment, don't. United States v. Valenzuela, 95 F. Supp. 363 (S.D. Cal. 1951).
QUICK BELATED REMINDER: The Race airs 8pm tonight, an hour early, so that CBS may broadcast The Kennedy Center Honors, one of my personal favorite programs every year.

Speaking of which: so, what other living American performing artists deserve the honor? My list starts with Woody Allen, Richard Pryor and Robert Altman. Yours?

Monday, December 20, 2004

THE ROOF, THE ROOF, THE ROOF IS ON FIRE: Yes, apparently the Love Shack has burned down. No word if it was caused by the glitter on the highway, the glitter on the front porch, or maybe even the glitter on the mattress.
ALOTT5MA FOREGONE CONCLUSION OF NEXT YEAR, OR: GO THE OTHER WAY. IT'LL LOOK WORSE This list will fawn over TAR while distancing itself from Jonathan and early-round exitees Rob and Amber. We (really, just Adam) will continue to be your most comprehensive source for mukluk coverage. Britney will end the year a mother (or mother-to-be) but not a wife and we will pencil in 2017 for the combination bat mitzvah/seance/implant imbroglio/Nickelodeon debut/denial of canoodling with Wilder Valderrama/Us Magazine "too sexy too soon" cover for Kabbalah Juicy Spears-Federline. Either Dean or Ickes McClinton08 will take over the Democratic helm, thus reinforcing the Republican stranglehold on government.

But those are the runners-up. Arrested Development is the best show on network television. Therefore, my own ALOTT5MA Foregone Conclusion of Next Year is that it will be cancelled. Let's review the math. Tonight's episode of Arrested Development featured (a) incest jokes (2); (b) a joke about a "colored man" (blue); (c) double entendres about sex, oral sex (2), infidelity (many), and anal sex; (d) the ingestion of drugs; (e) a wicked stab at fundamentalist Christians; and (f) for the second straight week, a plot point featuring the public exposure of male character's genitals. At a time when Michael Powell's FCC, prompted by exactly nine complaints (apparently from people who weren't actually watching the show), is investigating NBC's coverage of that gay burlesque show known as the Olympic opening ceremonies, we probably have to thank the confluence of two factors for the fact that AD hasn't been fined into oblivion: (1) nobody is watching it; and (2) Rupert Murdoch owns Fox. Anyway, there is more comedy in the editing and reaction shots of this show than there has been the entire season of, say, Joey, so get it while it lasts. But I'm preaching to the choir, right?

Sunday, December 19, 2004

MIZZLE TO DISMIZZLE: As someone with far more familiarity with certain of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure than I might wish, I really can't resist this Civ Pro-centric parody of Jay-Z's "99 Problems." Based on the fact pattern provided, there may well be 99 problems, but I'm not so sure that surviving a motion to dismiss under 12(b)(6) "ain't one."