Saturday, April 27, 2013

HOME OF TAX-FREE DRIBBLING:  Adopting perhaps the best minor league sports name since the Albuquerque Isotopes began PCL play in 2003, the Philadelphia 76ers-owned team in the NBA D-League will be known as the Delaware 87ers, or just "the Sevens."
WEASLEY IS OUR KING:  We have not discussed Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, since his 2011 wedding, but he recently toured the UK Warner Bros. with his wife and brother, and the pictures of them on the Harry Potter sets are worth a moment of your time.

Friday, April 26, 2013

IN YOUR OPINION:  With the fourth season finale just a few days away, Kate Aurthur ranks The Good Wife's top 76 recurring guest stars -- yes, 76 -- in order of awesomeness, and it's not a slideshow.

[Too low: Daddy Detective, F. Murray Abraham, Dreama Walker.  Too high: Dylan Baker. Appropriately ranked: the viral dancing lady, and the last two on the list.]
EGOT WATCH: Two pieces of theatre news of note.  First, while Hathaway's people have now denied the report of her fronting a revival of the Sam Mendes revival of Cabaret, the current rumor has Emma Stone attached

Second, unlike the Oscars, the Tonys have rules about who's a lead and who's a featured role.  You're presumed lead if you're above the title, and presumed featured if you're below it.  The big surprise is that the four young actresses who rotate in the title role of Matilda will not be eligible for consideration, since they're getting a special Tony Honor.  Most of the other decisions are unsurprising, and many of the races this year?  Kind of dull.  Patina Miller looks set to march to victory in Lead Actress in a Musical, and the stellar reviews would seem to lock up Bette Midler for Lead Actress in a play.  There's an interesting race in Best Musical and Best Actor in a Musical betwen Matilda and Kinky Boots, but not that interesting.
I'VE GOTTA HAVE MY MANGO PIE:  Your final three SNL hosts for the season will be Zach Galifianakis, Kristen Wiig, and Ben Affleck, the last of whom now joins the Five-Timers Club.

(FWIW, that's 16 male hosts to 5 female this season; the two preceding seasons were both 14-8.)

Thursday, April 25, 2013

DUN, DUNDUNDUNDUN, DUN! DUN! DUN! DUN, DUNDUNDUNDUN, DOO-DE-DOO!  Grantland surveys the summer blockbuster season, which basically starts next week with Iron Man 3.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

CAN DO? After much negotiating, apparently Fox has successfully locked up the rights to remake Guys and Dolls, with Channing Tatum and Joseph Gordon-Levitt attached to play Nathan Detroit and Sky Masterson, respectively.  (Honestly, wouldn't that be better with the casting flipped?)  I'm sure we'll have suggestions for othe parts--in particular, who plays Sarah and Adelaide?  (I can readily see Jennifer Garner or Anne Hathaway as Sarah, but Adelaide is a tougher nut to crack--maybe Megan Hilty or Sutton Foster?)
EGOT RED ALERT:  You know how we like to fake-cast Anne Hathaway and NPH in every Broadway role possible?  Because this fall, Anne Hathaway really is going to star alongside Alan Cumming in a Broadway revival of Cabaret.

(This also raises questions as to Season 5 of The Good Wife, for what it's worth.)
YOU KNOW THE BUSINESS AND I KNOW THE CHEMISTRY. MAYBE WE COULD ... PARTNER UP:   So I've finally started watching Breaking Bad; four episodes quickly down, and I can see completing two more per-night on nights when there's nothing else worth watching. Between the show's general reputation and that thing with the bathtub ... okay, I'm hooked.

There's fifty-four episodes in total; fifteen weeks until the show returns. Do others want to form a recap club to make sure we all finish in time and, if so, how to structure?  In addition, if any Breaking Bad vets want to provide any non-spoilery pointers on what to watch for, I'm listening; about all I know is "Walter White does bad things"/"Bryan Cranston is awesome at it" and "there's a character named Gus Fring to whom I should pay attention."
CHOOSING MONEY OVER POWER IS A MISTAKE ALMOST EVERYONE MAKES. MONEY IS THE BIG MANSION IN SARASOTA THAT STARTS FALLING APART AFTER TEN YEARS. POWER IS THAT OLD STONE BUILDING THAT STANDS FOR CENTURIES. I CANNOT RESPECT SOMEONE WHO DOES NOT SEE THE DIFFERENCE: We've somehow survived here without talking about Netflix's House of Cards thus far. At this point, I feel like most of the people who wanted to watch, did, and for those who didn't, let me just suggest that while it's not perfect, if you're a fan of watching Kevin Spacey at his hammiest and most cynical, plus tales of (occasionally implausible) political treachery, plus Robin Wright quietly being awesome, then it's worth committing the 13 hours (plus one month's Netflix, if you're not using it already, which you can cancel thereafter) for a fun little yarn. Spoilers below, and in the comments.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

SUICIDE IS PAINLESS, YET HE DIED OF NATURAL CAUSES: I'm sure in the days ahead, there will be rumors that Allan Arbus, who portrayed M*A*S*H's Dr. Sidney Freeman, was suffocated by a Korean mother in the back of a bus at the behest of Alan Alda. But he died of natural causes at 95. Dr Freeman was o doubt my favorite recurring non-regular character, but he was no doubt responsible for my deep-felt fear of being hypnotized.
PRODUCT SPOKESPERSONS WHOM I DO NOT NEED TO SEE RE-SITUATED INTO A NARRATIVE UNIVERSE, FOR $500, ALEX:  Cap'n Crunch; Kool-Aid Man. Seriously, I never want to see a quote like this:
“For us, this was about getting Kool-Aid Man back to his roots,” says Erica Rendall, Senior Brand Manager at Kraft Foods. “He is still a walking, talking, seven-foot jug of delicious Kool-Aid. This is a great opportunity for people who love the Kool-Aid Man to get to know him in a way they didn’t before.”
SOON TO BE SEEN AT A STADIUM NEAR YOU:  Daenerys Stormborn, of the House Targaryen, of the blood of old Valyria, gets the slow clap.

Related: inside the credits astrolabe; GoT theme music performed on the UW-Madison Carillon; this week's episode as a series of Facebook updates.

Monday, April 22, 2013

THE CHOIR INVISIBLE: We like lists around here. So how about 101 euphemisms for death taken from real-life (or, rather, real-Translated to the Temple Above) tombstones. I'm particularly fond of "Remanded."
THAT'S WHAT I LOVE ABOUT THESE HIGH SCHOOL GIRLS, MAN. I GET OLDER, THEY STAY THE SAME AGE: It hardly counts as "news," but it's nice to see in graph form just how consistently Hollywood Leading Men Not Named "Tom Hanks" keep getting cast with much younger love interests, no matter how much the men age.
WITH STEVE ZAHN CURRENTLY AUDITIONING FOR THE KEY ROLE OF "IT":  Remember that super awesome WSJ A-hed from January on the 40-something year-old guys who play Tag Across America one month every year?  Because Will Ferrell and Jack Black are now attached to star in a film adaptation, so long as someone can come up with a script and all those other little details.

Sunday, April 21, 2013