Friday, September 21, 2007


Ok. As you may have heard, comedian Kathy Griffin won an award at the Creative Arts Emmys a week or so back. Accepting it, she said,

"A lot of people come up here and thank Jesus for this award. I want you to know that no one had less to do with this award than Jesus...This award is my God now."

As you can well imagine, the conservative, Christian community was not best pleased. But then, they never are, are they? They couldn't even laugh when Pat Boone released a heavy metal album.

But, I haven't had anything to say about the Griffin thing because frankly, it just seems all so predictable: Her comments, the reaction to her comments, the tut-tutting college newspaper editorials on the importance of the first amendment. Yawn.

But this afternoon, came the news that a christian theatrical group had spent a reported $90,000 to buy a full-page ad in USA Today condemning Griffin.

Hold a moment, gentle readers.

Putting aside for the moment the question of what you or I would do with $90, 000 (Do you have any idea what I could do with $90,000?).

Putting aside the question of what a theatrical group is doing wasting $90, 000 on something like this (except to ask Mr. Klemow: If Sacred Fools had $90, 000 to spare, what would they spend it on?)

Putting all that aside. WTF is "Christlike" about being so thin-skinned that a joke from an only fitfully funny comedian (Emmy notwithstanding, there's a reason why Griffin's show is called "...the D-List") wins your condemnation?

I would define myself as an Agnostic. But if there is a God, and a Jesus, I'm quite sure they have sufficent self-esteem not to sweat it when people make a little fun.

And speaking of fun.

Still and all, this dumbass move probably still wouldn't have gotten me to write a post. Conservative Christians work themselves into a lather about the darndest things, wow, film at 11.

Let me ask you, dear and gentle readers. what state... you suppose...

...this christian theatrical group is located?

(come to papa...)

That's right, Tennessee.* The state that keeps on giving.

*Also, it turns out, the home of the "Leave Britney Alone Guy."

Thursday, September 20, 2007

This is kind of cool

Someone has put together a program where you type in a word or words, and it searches flickr to find images to represent each letter of that word (or words).

What did I ask it to spell? What do you think?

K E I T otel and Restaurant Services A A N D is for door A N_McElman_070716_2505 N A B E L

Couldn't find, find a place to go

This is one of my favorite Fixx recordings.

In general Fixx are something of a guilty pleasure of mine. If I really listen to them critically, I have to admit they're not terribly significant. Yet I do listen to, like, and know well a number of their singles.

If nothing else, it can always be said that they had a distinctive sound (based around guitarist Jamie West-Oram and vocalist Cy Curnin).

Here's "Red Skies" (the redone version)

When I reviewed their Millennium Collection I said that the redo added "nothing to the arrangement or performance," but I've changed my mind. I now feel it's much preferable to the 1982 original.

(the video's not great, but it gives you the idea)

My favorite color gets lucky. worn by Eva Amurri.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

If you really bug me then I'll say goodbye...If you wanna be my sitcom, you gotta get with my friends

Just watched the premiere of Back to You, the new sitcom with Kelsey Grammer as a TV anchorman returning to a smaller market after he loses his job at a big Los Angeles station.

Also starring are Patricia Heaton, Fred Willard, Ayda Field and Laura Marano. Jim Burrows is directing, and Christopher "not that one" Lloyd and Steve Levitan are the creators. That's enough star talent both in front of and behind the cameras that you'd think it would be, if not a sure thing, then certainly a safe bet.

But somehow, I had a feeling it wasn't going to be that easy. And sure enough, although about a dozen critics have really liked the show, it's mostly been getting average reviews.

Based on the pilot, it really doesn't deserve much better...this was pretty laugh-poor. There were a few, but they were small and far-between....and the "big guns" didn't land any of them. Even allowing for the reality that Grammer has typecasting issues beyond most actors' wildest nightmares or that I've never really been a fan of Heaton's...that's not good.

(In Grammer's case, he's also not helped by the idea that crossed my mind of what a wonderful part this would have been for the late Phil Hartman. But obviously, we can't blame anyone on the show for that.)

Willard was funny once or twice...but he's also playing the same character he's been playing, with different names, since roughly 1974. Another bright spot is Marano, an 11-year-old performer who looks like she might be that rare child actress worth watching.

But poor Ayda Field-formerly Jeannie on Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip.

The role she's playing could be filled (and I use the word advisedly) by any Stuff model willing to mouth sub-Kelly Bundy gags. She certainly has the body for it, but I take it as an article of faith that an actress who's been on an Aaron Sorkin series deserves better. Even a failed one (noble though it was).

And stage vet Josh Gad's youthful news director character smells like it wants to be Murphy Brown's Miles Silverberg with computer nerd and fat-guy jokes larded on.

Really, the whole thing feels like nothing so much as a "wannabe" sitcom. The jokes are fresh only inasmuch as they're about what I would expect a college freshman to come up with. Shortly after we learn that Heaton and Grammer had a one night stand 10 years ago, he uses the newsman's announcement "This just in."

Do you really need me to tell you what her response is?

Even with Burrows textbook direction ("it's always funnier moving") as a guide, jokes like that can't be saved.

The plot mechanics are, if anything, even less subtle, including one "twist" that I saw coming just from reading some of the reviews. It's not they gave much of anything was just that easy.

I dunno. Maybe Benson's satirical novel is still too fresh in my memory for me to laugh at anything other than the most wonderful sitcoms (ah, NewsRadio, how I miss you). Or maybe the sitcom really is dead this time.

But, I'm old enough to remember the first time I read people were saying was just before a little series called The Cosby Show hit.

Aisha Tyler is a goddess

If further proof is desired, click on above thumbnail to see the image in original size.

Thanks, Alicia. I'll just email this to 1993, when I might have cared

Alicia Silverstone has filmed an ad for PETA in which she appears in the nude.


This blog is currently the second result if you do a Google search for "katharine mcphee stupid."

First result is video of Tyra Banks playing "honk honk" with McPhee's boobies.


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Seriously: God is stalking me or some such shit (Zork III: The Dungeon Master)

Things I've Found In Books:

Just now, between pages 174 and 175 of the Seattle Public Library's copy of Jane Wyman, A Biography by Joe Morella and Edward Z. Epstein: A religious tract "cunningly" disguised as a $1,000,000 dollar bill.

Which is a terrible thing to do to someone in the financial situation I'm in at the moment.

There's addresses for two different (but related) web pages written on the bill, but I'll get to that in a minute.

Written around the borders of the back of the bill is:

The million-dollar question: Will you go to heaven? Here's a quick test: Have you ever told a lie, stolen anything or used God's name in vain?

Jesus Christ, no!

Jesus said, "Whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart." Have you looked with lust?

You damn Skippy. Let's face it, if that's the criteria, I'm commiting adultery like a superbad pimp with a huge cock...

Will you be guilty on judgement day?

Guiltier than some, less than others.

If you have done these things, God sees you as a lying, thieving, blasphemous adulterer-at-heart.

Geez. And I thought we were friends.

The Bible warns that if you are guilty you will end up in Hell.

That's my understanding of the way it's supposed to work, yes.

That's not God's will.

Even if I'm a lying, thieving, blasphemous adulterer-at-heart? Cool!

He sent His Son to suffer and dies on the cross for you. Jesus took your punishment upon Himself: "God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life."

Yes, I do seem to remember something about that from Godspell.

Then he rose from the dead and defeated death. Please, repent (turn from sin) today and trust in Jesus, and God will grant you everlasting life. Then read your Bible daily and obey it.

Okay, but which parts? The parts about having faith? Turning the other cheek? I don't think so. Why? Because, moving onto the web pages I mentioned earlier...I almost didn't visit them, but when I did, oh, the smile that came to my face...

Because: This religious tract comes to us from the good offices of...Kirk Cameron. Yes, Kirk Cameron.

Sitcom actor, Tiger Beat coverboy. Christian of today. Disbeliever in evolution. Believer in the provable existence of God "without the use of faith," which I kinda thought was the whole point.

Clueless born-again who insisted that a woman should be fired because she didn't live up to his high moral standards (she'd been a Playboy centerfold).

That Kirk Cameron. His pupils reduced to slipping play money into library books, oh me, where hath the opulence of Growing Pains fled?

Monday, September 17, 2007

And then, Ben went out to play in the traffic

From the "Fall Books Preview" in the new issue of Entertainment Weekly. Discussing Jenny Downham's Before I Die.
Random House snapped up the TA heartbreaker a week after Downham finished.


(Only good sign: Downham is 43, and this is her first novel)

I never thought I'd say this, but god bless Robby Benson

...if for no other reason, then for writing a book about Hollywood that was better (much, much better) than Hollywood Car Wash.

According to "The Hollywood Dictionary," definitions from which are sprinkled throughout Benson's book:
Theater In L.A.: Baseball in Canada.

Hi, Corey.

Random Flickr Blogging: 1237

There's something in this about all women.

Damned if I know what, though.


Emmy one-liners

  1. Thank god for mute control.
  2. I really wanna know who thought: The Sopranos: Musical number!
  3. I still hate 30 Rock, that doesn't change just because it found favor with Emmy voters. I'm hoping it'll be like Arrested Development, a show that all the insiders (or people who want to feel themselves inside) love, but that no one else actually watches.
  4. Yo, Emmy show producers: Since Jon Stewart already has the Oscars next year, give this show to Stephen Colbert or Steve Carell. Jon and Stephen "giving" Ricky Gervais' Emmy to Steve was the best, biggest laugh of the night. Or, give it back to Conan, who did a much better job last year.
  5. Thank god Christina Aguilera didn't give Tony Bennett a heart attack.
  6. I know a lot of people are going to be whining about James Spader winning over Gandolfini. Fuck 'em. I'm already wondering how Alan Shore will refer to it in one of Boston Legal's trademark breaking-the-fourth-wall lines, though.
  7. And once again: I know this isn't a new question in life. It's not even a new question on this blog. But what has happened to the women in Hollywood? All those stiff, stiff faces...I can think of very few women on the show tonight that I would even want to kiss, much less do anything below the neck...

Sunday, September 16, 2007

I'm sure you don't

A post in the Christian worldmagblog from a couple of years ago says...

We're often told how uncomfortable and awkward nude scenes are. So why does Kate Winslet say she was thrilled with her scenes in the upcoming film Little Children? According to Ananova:

"If you had said to me 15 years ago that when I was nearly 30, and had two children, I would be doing some very explicit sex scenes, I swear to God, that literally would have been my worst nightmare.

"But I got to a point where I thought: “For God's sake, screw it. I'm always gallivanting around the place, going 'be who you are, be who you are'. I should just get over myself and get on with it”, and I did.

I'm still not sure I understand what was so thrilling.