Wednesday, July 30, 2008

PSA's: Don't Do Drugs

In a reminiscing moment my pal remembered this wonderful ditty:
"Users are losers,
and losers are users,
so don't do drugs,
Don't do drugs!"

I immediately went to youtube to try to find the 25 year old commercial with McGruff and stumbled upon this amazing PSA:

Thanks Pee Wee! (creeepy)
My pal's response -
"Remember when everyone thought little kids would get into crack? So whack!"

Anyway, here's the McGruff one:

For more ad council fun - check this out.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Studio 54 - The Television Show

Because two feature films weren't enough, it's all over the news today that Showtime is going to have a Studio 54 show.
Here's the important details:
  • It will be a drama.
  • It will not use real life stories from the club, the only "real" character is founder Steve Rubell, so it can be totally crazy without being libel.
  • There will be tons of sex and drugs and disco music
Ok, so that third bullet point wasn't on the press release, but you totally know it will be true.

Question is, are we excited about this show?

It matters who's in it, but I think it could be an interesting show.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Shows I Can't Wait For: Dexter and Californication

In exactly 2 months, September 28, 2008 --Showtime will premier Dexter AND Californication.

I'm obsessed with both of these shows.

If you like CSI and/or Law & Order - take it to the next level with Dexter. Ya know how cops always get way to into the cases on those shows? Well, Dexter wants vengeance so bad he'll indulge in another extreme need he has, he'll kill the wrong-doer.
It's extremely creepy thanks to Michael C. Hall, an amazing supporting case, great writing, and an overall well put together production team.

I wasn't really super crazy about David Duchovny in a sexual attraction ever. I always was on the line about his aloof acting in The X Files. But, like many I was won over when he was in the comedy film Evolution. (His cameo in Zoolander also hilarious) So, I watched the film The TV Set on Showtime, and then decided, what the hey - I'll check out Californication.
The premise is pretty much things my nightmares are made of - a New York writer goes to LA to work on seeing his vision put on film, only to see his work and his life be reduced to phony Hollywood glam.
This show is sexy, funny, real and absurd. A completely entertaining show that I look forward to seeing how they continue the storylilne through in the second season.

Basically kids, get psyched for September 28th...

Mad Men Season 2 Premier

Was a little anti-climatic.

What did rock my socks was the cinematography of the show. It's magnificent, but I feel like the story fell a little flat.

...but even without a thrillingly interesting storyline - I love the characters, and setting on this show.

SPOILER ALERT: If you haven't seen it before, I'm gonna talk about the show and possibly spoil it for you. You've been warned...Dumbass.

Questions the season premier spurred in me:

Are we going to see Don Draper have a dramatic fall due to health issues similar to boss Roger Sterling?

WHERE can I get Meditations in an emergency [poems]by Frank O'Hare?? I want to see those poems! (Get thee to a library! It's out of print according to it seems to be available via Alibris.)

What exactly are the pills Don's on, are they going to alter his state?
I looked this one up, and they are:

How much do I love the female roles? (Ok, so this is more of an exaggerated rhetorical.)
Betty Draper - The former model turned housewife with too much free time is back to trying to act as frighteningly close to perfect as possible.

The voluptuous Joan Holloway who's obvious queen bee mentality within the secretarial pool and over the most powerful man in the office (the aforementioned Roger Sterling) makes her a delightful power woman of the '60s to watch.

And, the creative mind and strong young woman Peggy Olsen, (her character's name is such a throw back to Clarke Kent's (Spoiler Alert: Clarke Kent's Superman) wide-eyed co-worker Jimmy Olsen, but season two finds her growing much stronger, and colder. The surprise baby of last season has somewhat made her focus on her position all the more. It doesn't hurt that she's Draper's appretice, which makes me giddy, mostly because Don chose her over the snarky-brat Pete Campbell (a character I Love to Hate).

So, was the season pemier of two exciting?

Was it the start of something good?

Stay Tuned.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Melrose Place IS a Really Good Show

Let me clarify before you stop reading this blog thinking that I have no taste.
It's good in that cheesey goodness that only television can provide.

I never watched Melrose Place during it's original run. When I found it on I was a little surprised seeing as it is a FOX show. Then I got over and said, what they hey, I'll give it a shot.

The first few episodes of season one are god awful. Truly craptastic.

Then Heather Locklear came in (Episode 21 "Picture Imperfect") and things got a lot better.
It's not the catty drama that I enjoy about Melrose though, it's the themes each episodes touch upon. They really set up the classic 90's storylines in TV dramas.

Plot lines such as:
-Car Jacking
-Racial Violence
-Gun Control
-Sexual Harassment

In the first season there were also cast members that never came back. Most notably the token black character played by Vanessa Williams:

Oh, no no no - not that one. The one from the show Soul Food that played Maxine Chadway.. yeah that one. She played an aerobics instructor with a boring plot line about dating an awesome millionaire.

The character that possibly had even less of an interesting plot line was "the gay guy", Matt Fielding. He is basically there to listen to stories and inform people it's ok to be gay, and of course about AIDS.

In one episode they go so far to have him comfort the Vanessa Williams character by saying, "I know it can be hard to understand issues like this, like all my friends with AIDS..." Did I not mention the stellar writing yet?

It's by my favorite writer ever - Darren Starr. He's a writer of my total fav show - Sex in the City. (That's sarcasm folks.)

The sad ending to this post, only has season 1. From what I hear/read/beg friends to tell me about it gets a lot crazier. While I'm intrigued to see what happens for myself, I did grow up watching Days of Our Lives and can spot a soap opera obsession budding when I see it.

I think I may just give up on Melrose for now and move on to something even more classic:

Stay tuned :)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Estelle Getty - Thank You For Being a Friend.

Very sad news to report to TV fans.
Our beloved "Ma", has passed away.

Estelle Getty suffered from advanced dementia and died at her sons home on July 22nd, 2008 - just two days shy of her 85th birthday.

Oddly enough, the role that brought her to the forefront of American Sweetheartery was as Sophia Petrillo an octogenarian grandmother living in Florida with her daughter, two other women, and some cheesecake. She was only in her early sixties when she first played the role.

Sophia was a great character brought to life with quick wit by Getty.

We'll miss you, but we'll always...

No matter what, Estelle Getty is a Golden Girl in our hearts.

Reruns air on Lifetime every morning.

FUN FACT: Often believed to be the youngest of the Golden Girls, Estelle Getty was actually the second youngest. Rue McClanahan is actually the youngest.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Freaks and Geeks Factor

Shows lasting for one season can sometimes be a great thing.

Let's take Freaks and Geeks for example.

It was only on for one season.
Some say this is a tragedy.

But let's be honest, they were able to end on a high note.
If Freaks and Geeks continued, it would've become sitcom spit-shined and lost all the glorious rough edges it had.

How do I know I can hold this as a truth?

Let's look at the careers the producer's, writer's, and stars went on to do:

Paul Feig - Creator, Writer/Co-Executive Producer all 18 episodes
Where He'd Be Now If Freaks and Geeks Stayed On: He'd run into burn out by 3rd season and need to bring in new blood. Though I'd trust his decision, my guess is network brass and heirarchy B.S. would get in the way and someone would be brought in that would try to sex it up for the masses. Though it was his creative brain child, and the network trusts him, he's original vision that was so great, will be lost in brightly lite laugh predictable laugh tracks.
Where He Is Now: He directed "Shoot", the best episode in terms of direction on Mad Men in the first season. Also some amazing episodes of the American Office. I mean, check out his IMDB director's list*. Stellar television direction. He's really grown to be one of the best there is.

Judd Apatow - Executive Producer (all 18), Writer, Director
Where He'd Be Now If Freaks and Geeks Stayed On: He'd probably stick through and possibly get to 1 or 2 movies in between.
Where He Is Now: He's behind your favorite movies -either by pen, camera or producing he's done something you've seen in the past 7 years. Titles such as 40 Year Old Virgin, Knocked Up, Anchor Man, Walk Hard

Allison Jones - Casting
Where She'd Be Now If Freaks and Geeks Stayed On: She did a great job she'd be used again regardless.
Where She Is Now: She is "aces" at what she does. Her resume is virtual lists of comedy dream teams… the two best that come to mind, oh just a little TV sitcom known as Arrested Development, and a film called Super Bad.

Linda Cardellini - Linda Weir
Where She'd Be Now If Freaks and Geeks Stayed On: Probably made into a sitcom starlit in the same vein of a Jennifer Aniston. While it would be great for the actress, the character would be capitalized upon by the network, she'd be made into the sex symbol more than the growingly independent female character that the actress played so well.
Where She Is Now: She's been in a decent films, most notable though was Grandma's Boy. She's also on ER, but starting in the older seasons that most original ER fans stopped watching. Even though it's still well written, let's face it- when Noah Wiley left they should've just named it "Thursday Night Doctor Drama".

John Francis Daley - Sam Weir
Where He'd Be Now If Freaks and Geeks Stayed On: Would've grown into and out of the role by the third season. It would stay on longer. He could've faced the dreaded teen sitcom star fate, or just rode into complete obscurity after the series.
Where She Is Now: He's done some film work, Waiting, and he's also been working on Bones.

James Franco - Daniel Desario
Where He'd Be Now If Freaks and Geeks Stayed On: He probably would've been the first Ashton Kutcher. Um, James, are you happy or sad about missing out on that? I'm not even sure.
Where He Is NowSpider-Man trilogy for starters, and more recently (to this post) Pineapple Express

Samm Levine - Neal Schweiber
Where He'd Be Now If Freaks and Geeks Stayed On: Ride the show as far is would go. They'd want to keep him and probably lock him in for as long as possible.
Where He Is Now: He's all over television. Every season at least three shows a season he's cameoing. He's a very talented baby face actor. I'm surprised no one's cast him as a regular on a sitcom yet.

Jason Segal - Nick Andopolis
Where He'd Be Now If Freaks and Geeks Stayed On: Continue to showcase talent in this character, perhaps done a movie.
Where He Is Now: He's starring in How I Met Your Mother, and just did Forgetting Sarah Marshall which he wrote and Judd Apatow Produced…are we seeing the trend?

Martin Starr - Bill Haverchuck
Where He'd Be Now If Freaks and Geeks Stayed On: Probably never as valued by networks as he should've been. Martin Starr killed this role, and would've continued to be awesome.
Where He Is Now: He's done some guest spots and had minor roles in films (Judd Apatow's produced 3). I wouldn't be shocked if he starred in a film soon. He's very good.

Seth Rogan - Ken Miller
Where He'd Be Now If Freaks and Geeks Stayed On: Kept up with wise cracks, most likely grow obese, perhaps get to one or two films
Where He Is Now: He's Hollywood's sweet heart and has been in pretty much every Apatow film since Freaks and Geeks. He's written, produced and starred. If Freaks and Geeks stayed on the air, no way we would've seen the entire potential he's grown to.

I'm not saying Freaks and Geeks didn't deserve another season. It could've gone on to do great things. But, let's not remember this as the-show-that-got-away. Freaks and Geeks is an amazing show, with eighteen really wonderful episodes.

The only way it could've survived is if it was a half hour instead of an hour long dramady. It could've been cut down, but there would've been a little less focus on each individual's story. This may have lost it's original intention, but it would've meant a long running show. The American public can't take a full hour of humorous reality. They like their hour long funny in the form of America's Funniest Home Videos.

What made it successful to fans is because it has a lovely way of portraying the realistic teen years. The changing relationships with friends, parents and the self are all captured with smart dialogue and actors.

If you haven't seen Freaks and Geeks, I highly recommend checking it out. It's too good for Hulu as of now. So go treat yourself to the box set. You'll be pleasantly surprised with the 1980's version of Wonder Years minus the voice over, which is a refreshing change of pace in coming of television.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The View: Whoopi Makes Elisabeth Cry

First, let me say I do have a full time job and cannot watch daytime TV as much as I'd like. If I had my druthers though, I'd still never watch The View.

Except today, because not only does Elizabeth Hasselbeck (Elisabeth I saw it spelled somewhere today and I was like, really? You even spell your name stupidly.) cry, but she is also beautifully cut off by Barbra Walters in classic, "let the adults talk now" fashion.

It all was over the N Word. And Elizabeth/Elisabeth Hasselbeck was trying to explain that Whoopi Goldberg and her were totally alike. Apparently Elizabeth/Elisabeth she doesn't see color, she also doesn't know when to stop.

Take a look:

Many thanks go out to my girl Erica Watson for alerting me to this breaking story.

Your 2008 Emmy Nominations

Here's the run down...

Best Drama
BOSTON LEGAL ---really? People are still watching this show? And they consider it a drama? It's pretty much the poor man's Alley McBeal without dream sequences.
Mad Men --- didn't this already win an Emmy for the first season? I mean I love it, but let's just say it's awesome and move on.
Dexter --- GREAT show. Really creepy, compelling and something that is not to be missed. A strong contender.
Damages: --- I found this show to be a little too into itself. I am willing to give it another shot, but I think the storyline is a little too night time soap opera meets law drama. I could be wrong here though. I'm going off the pilot, which is never the strongest.
Lost --- Amazing show. Great season. They really kicked it up a notch and deserve the recognition.
House, M.D. --- This season was the worst season, with the best season finale. Tough call. But can we all agree the extra team members are people you just couldn't care less about? Just keep showing House being a dick, it's all we really care about.

Best Comedy Series
Entourage - This show is a fun superficial comedy, but it's nothing so outstanding that deserves the kudos of an Emmy.
Two and A Half Men- a national tragedy that it's the number 1 sitcom. Make it stop America, I beg of you, make it stop.
Curb Your Enthusiasm- Consider it curbed. I love this show, but we've been uncomfortabley hilarious for long enough, this season wasn't as good as past seasons. I think it's time to say goodbye.
The Office
- Here's a show that continues to get better. The writers and actors seem to all work really hard together to put forth characters that you care about and want to love and laugh at. It's really well done, but I don't see it getting the award this year.
30 Rock
- This show has 17 nominations total, and had one of the best seasons ever in sitcom history. Topping out with my favorite 2.42 minutes in television history. I give you the clip that will win them their Emmy...

For more on Emmy nominations, stay tuned here, or visit:
The Prime Time Emmy Award List

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

SVU Marathons Hijack My Life

It happens every weekend, almost without fail.

I will plan my quality time with TV. There’s the hours allotted to a lovely slow wake up lounging in front of my roommates orgasmically large plasma TV.

On the couch I usually view DVR’d programs that I’ve been looking forward to. I get oh-so-comfy as I rub the sleep from my eyes. After my scheduled programs have completed, that’s when I take a gander at the channel listing.

And that’s when they get me.

It’s either USA Networks, Bravo, or TNT that is airing them,

And you can never have just one after you watch them.

That’s right folks,

Law & Order marathons.

I can take about two hours of plain old Law & Order.

I will go about 4 episodes deep of Criminal Intent (To be honest, I find most of the Criminal Intent marathons run short for me because they have a heavy hand on rotating in the same episodes. This is most likely because there are some episodes that are really not worth repeating of Criminal Intent, and it’s a young show. In a couple of years though, I’ll probably be able to take more episodes. That Vincent Dinafrio* is a trip!)

Special Victims Unit though, it takes hold of me.

I have spent entire 24 hour periods watching this show. Sometimes I don’t even mean to keep watching, they just keep coming and every story is more fucked up than Maury Povich’s wildest guests on crime sprees.

Not only is the story telling compelling, but it’s the only one of the Law & Order that really gets you committed to the characters. Since they deal with the most horrific crimes, they get background stories. It’s not as invasive as cop shows such as NYPD Blue, but you have a good idea the reasons they take on the sex crimes.

The best cop on the cast is the most experienced NBC police officer, Detective Munch, from the Baltimore unit in Homicide, otherwise known as Richard Belzer. His ability to attach himself from the crime and have witty jabs and off kilter conspiracy theories is always a refreshing injection into their dark stories.

But let's be honest, when it comes down to it, the best part has to be this guy:

Shows I Can't Wait For: Heroes

I saw this as I was walking in Manhattan the other day and stopped in the middle of the street to take a picture of it.


Cause it's almost too good to believe.

The Heroes series finale left us with the world being saved, but the villains uprising. For fans of the show you know each season is referred to as a chapter. The next chapter is entitled "Villains".

My theories so far are just that we can expect a lot more amazing fight scenes and a compelling story line that isn't constantly introducing characters and taking away from the characters we love (a problem the writer's ran into in the second season and freely admit to being the reason ratings fell).

For fans of the show, please, I beg you, remember to tune in. This show is costly to make and if ratings fall they are definitely going to pull it.

If you've never watched Heroes, get into it. It's well worth the time invested, especially if you enjoy super heroes, and ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Characters are relatable and all have interesting back stories. There's enough twists to keep you asking, but not so much that you're constantly questioning people motives (like the wonderful but often confusing LOST).

I cannot wait for Heroes to come back, and I couldn't be happier that they're keeping the Monday time slot. In the fall, we'll all have reason now to have a case of the "Fuck yeah it's Heroes Monday".

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

American Pride

I know the Fourth of July has come and gone, but being a native New Yorker I feel some sense of pride knowing that today was the day the Declaration of Independence was read in New York.

And because of that I want to celebrate my Amercanism by making up a new word (see: Americanism) and also celebrating one of the best shows to ever show off freedom of speech, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

This clip came from the classic episode entitled Charlie Goes America All Over Everybody's Asses and it can be seen on Hulu by clicking on this link. (NOTE: You will have to create a Hulu account to see this program due to the fact that it's TV MA. It's worth it.)

I cannot wait for this sitcom to return. It's by far one of the boldest comedies on television since Seinfeld. Just as they took the "friend" comedy to another level, It's Always Sunny goes even further and mocks just about everything in such a manner that you can't even get pissed at their hilarious ignorance.

If you aren't watching this show, I highly recommend picking up Seasons 1 & 2 on DVDwhich is absolutely hilarious.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


Here's the info I just read on Wild Sound,
AFTRA's agreed to the proposed contract:


Members of the American Federation of Television & Radio Artists have ratified the union's primetime deal, spurning SAG's avid campaigning to vote down the contract.

AFTRA said 62% of those voting supported the deal. Announcement came Tuesday evening following a month of bitter battling between the thesp unions...


Huzzah! The shows I can't wait to see will be coming back on schedule!

Theme Song Study

Have you ever noticed that whenever you try to sing the Family Matters theme song you always end up singing the Full House one?
When you try to complete the Family Matters theme song you get it garbled with the Perfect Strangers theme?

Well, first of all this is understandable. All three shows were on the golden years of Friday night television - the ultimate television package line-up known as T.G.I.F. on ABC.

What you might not know is originally the theme for Family Matters was Nat King Cole's What a Wonderful World. This changed, thankfully, to this song (click here)

The theme to Family Matters was written by Jesse Frederick, Bennet Salvay and Scott Roeme.
The duo of Frederick and Salvay also composed Perfect Strangers. This accounts for their similarities...

BUT, none other than Uncle Jesse himself, wrote the theme song to Full House. That's right ladies, John "still hot, still great hair" Stamos wrote this gem:

You think Stamos ripped that shit off from Jesse Frederick?


Jesse Frederick sings it.

And that is why Perfecrt Strangers, Full House, and Family Matters theme songs all sound the same.

SAG Strike Updates

Is anyone else worried about the SAG strike?
I mean sure, the Writer's got a bum wrap, and Broadway was able to negotiate,
but what's up with SAG?

Will this interfere with shows coming back???

Well here's the best resource I've found so far with up-to-date info for all you junkies:

Sunday, July 6, 2008

My Thoughts on Your Ad Here

This week’s discussion: Adam Corolla’s Taco Bell Commercial

Is it wrong that the more he talks about this "Big Box Meal" being a manly meal…the more I want it?

I mean, it's got all the food I love, and Adam Corolla likes it too?


Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Top Ten Reasons I Hate Sex and the City

10. Shoes – seriously, I wouldn’t listen to a discussion with my own friends about expensive shoes for more than a courtesy breadth.

9. The Short Haired Red Head – She’s the dowdy one therefore more business minded. How does this not piss more people off?

8. Charlotte – I know this one’s name because it fits her doughy eyed character. She’s been living in New York long enough, she should be more jaded.

7. The Old Whore- The cougar character is fine for a movie, but as a serial character it’s just an old whore. Blanche Deverogh kicks this character’s ass, hard. Ya know why? She didn’t do sex scenes.

6. The Sets – Friends was over the top with their apartment, and then the Sex and the City designers were like, ya know what? Let’s just go WAY over the top! We’re so fucking awesomely extravagant.

5. The Clothes – Ok, she’s in a fucking ballerina outfit in the beginning, and she means to wear it out. There are GIANT flowers on her outfits:

A. Those are $60!

B. If this was a fatter woman you saw on a Manhattan street, you’d think she was someone who speaks to trash cans.

4. Squint and Laughs – There are a lot of fucking phony ass laughing moments that start with a knowing or condescending squint and then chuckle.

3. The Dialogue – Female dialogue written by gay men. I said it. Yes, women discuss sex, but we don’t do the same as gay men, and I think it’s just painfully obvious.

2. Drinks – The alcohol they consume and the places they chose are beat you over the head prissy.

1. Sarah Jessica Parkwhore

important editorial note:

I know a lot of you TV Junkies love Sex and the City though, and I just want you to know, I do blame you.