Saturday, December 12, 2015

OONTA GOOTA, SOLO?  Evaluating Han Solo's preemptive self-defense under the Model Penal Code.

Related: so, Obi-Wan Kenobi hasn't probably used his lightsaber since the battle with Anakin on Mustafar, twenty-ish years ago.  Now, within a couple minutes at the Mos Eisley cantina, he's slashing Cornelius Evazan and Ponda Baba without giving it a second's thought? And without any kind of reaction afterwards, like, damn I guess I've still got it?
AMERICAN LEAGUER MISUNDERSTANDS WHO SHOULD HIT WHAT:  I talking about anything to do with space, especially the prospect of Terraforming Mars.  I also love making fun of Jose Canseco.  You could reshuffle the universe a thousand times and I doubt I'll ever get a second chance to do both things at the same time,

Friday, December 11, 2015

Thursday, December 10, 2015

THE DARKSIDEBOOK:  The L.A. Times has a helpful style and information guide for all things Star Wars.  Please note that "Imperial" is to be capitalized when used as an adjective, and that it's a "proton torpedo," not a "photon torpedo."
PRESENTED BY PIA ZADORA:  Golden Globe nominations arrived this morning, and a few interesting things to note:
  • Even though they're being aggressively campaigned in Supporting Actress, the Globes nominated Rooney Mara in Carol and Alicia Vikander in The Danish Girl as leads (Vikander also has a supporting nomination for Ex Machina).  Cate Blanchett is widely considered a virtual lock on the prize at the Oscars, hence the category shifts.
  • Room recaptured a little bit of mojo, with Best Picture, Best Actress, and Best Screenplay nominations.
  • The Martian (although it has a lot of funny moments) running as a Comedy is pretty blatant category fraud, right?  That said, seems like The Big Short could throw a kink into that plan, with Best Picture, 2 Best Actor, and Best Screenplay nominations.
  • As usual, the TV categories are where we get the really Globes-y nominations, where they like random newcomers (Rachel Bloom, Wagner Moura, Catriona Balfe) and name stars doing TV work (Patrick Stewart, Jamie Lee Curtis, Gael Garcia Bernal).
  • A total of two network shows among 16 best TV series/movie/mini-series nominees:   Empire and American Crime.  The comedy nominations are all either premium cable or streaming.
  • Globes fell hard for Mr. Robot, with a (well-deserved) nomination for Rami Malek, as well as a Best Supporting Actor nod for Christian Slater and a Best Drama nod.
MAIL ... KIMP?  Serial, season two, has begun.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

BILL MURRAY AIN'T NOTHIN' TO F--- WIT: The alleged final Wu-Tang Clan album, Once Upon A Time in Shaolin, has only a single copy, and a bunch of restrictions tied to it to "preserve the art," including a bar on selling additional copies for 88 years (though the buyer can have listening parties and give it away for free).  Most bizarre, however, is an alleged clause stating that currently active members of the Wu-Tang Clan and Bill Murray have the right to (without legal repercussion) attempt to plan and execute one (but only one) "heist or caper" to steal back the album, and if successful, all rights would revert to the Clan.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

I CARRIED A WATERMELON:  ABC is also getting into the "musicals for television" game with a 3 hour event--Dirty Dancing, starring Abigail Breslin as Baby.  So, who do you cast in the other roles?

Monday, December 7, 2015

EGOT WATCH: Grammy nominations are out this morning, and a few EGOT-watch notes:
  • Wiz Khalifa/Charlie Puth ("See You Again," Song of the Year and others)
  • Seth MacFarlane (Traditional Pop Vocal Album)
  • Amy Poehler (Spoken Word for the audiobook of Yes, Please)
  • Louis C.K. (Best Comedy Album)
  • Michael Cerveris/Sydney Lucas and Christian Borle/Brian D'Arcy James (Best Musical Show Album, even though they won't be winning, because Hamilton)
  • There are no listed individual nominations for "Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media," but goes to "artist(s) or in-studio producers of a majority of the tracks on the album."  That probably does not qualify either Elizabeth Banks or Anna Kendrick for an award (Kendrick/"Barden Bellas" are credited on only 7 of the album's 18 tracks), but who knows?
 Also, given that she was nominated for song and record of the year last year for "All About That Bass," doesn't the Meghan Trainor "New Artist" nod seem iffy?  (The rule is that you're only ineligible if you've won a Grammy before.)  
BOB DOBBS APPROVES: As a reminder, Andrew Raff has been kind enough to set up a Slack channel to accompany the site, for real-time chatting and linking in a private setting, which 26 of us are already using. You can sign up here.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

FROM THE ALOTT5MA SCYLLA AND CHARYBDIS DEFAMATION LAW DESK:  A Turkish criminal defamation case turns on whether a tweet comparing the President to Gollum is defamatory:
After a judge said he did not know enough about the Tolkien creature to make an appropriate decision, five experts were ordered to conduct an investigation into Gollum’s moral character before the next phase of the trial begins in February.... 
Peter Jackson, the director of the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy, and two screenwriters, Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens, said in a joint statement given to the website The Wrap that the images the court will analyze are of the character Sméagol, not Gollum. 
“Sméagol would never dream of wielding power over those weaker than himself,” the statement read. “He is not a bully. In fact he’s very lovable. This is why audiences all over the world have warmed to his character.” 
Stephen Colbert, the talk-show host who knows so much about Tolkien that he was asked by Mr. Jackson to clarify elements of “Return of the King” during an interview on “The Colbert Report,” declined to comment through a publicist.