Tuesday, December 27, 2005

good evening...

I hope the holiday season is treating you well.

I picked up this horror movie at Best Buy today, with the $15 giftcard I had. I searched high and low for something halfway decent. I was uncertain at first but then remembered that I'd heard great things about this early '80s slasher. Word has it that it's got great atmosphere and lensing and is a truly great horror film. Fangoria and The Horror Channel both gave it rave reviews. I also want to pick up the 1982 Jack Palance/Donald Pleasance/Martin Landau horror film Alone In The Dark, directed by Jack Sholder, who made the very excellent The Hidden in 1987. Morningwood's debut album is released in a week or so, as is Jenny Lewis's solo CD Rabbit Fur Coat. Thankfully, I get paid this Friday. Hopefully, the holiday pay will help my pocket money.

For Christmas I received a very nice long-sleeved white shirt from my sister (from Old Navy) plus an awesome brown jacket, Candies cologne, boxers, and sparklers (it's an inside joke; I'll explain it some time). Her friend Toni got me a tin full of homemade goodies (chocolate-covered peanut butter crackers, cookies, etc.) plus a Christmas card that had a book of Carmike Cinemas gift certificates inside - worth $25. My father dropped off a Christmas card when I was at work the other day. A $50 bill was inside; after having to spend it on food while I worked and then I treated my mother and myself to a very tasty appetizer at Chili's, it was soon gone. Oh well.

All in all, it was a very nice holiday.

I watched Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price and Videodrome last night. What a great double feature. The documentary needs to be seen by every single person. Everytime I hear someone mention they got something at Wal-Mart, it sickens me. We haven't shopped there in more than five years and will continue not shopping there. I will aggressively promote this thing, as I did before I rented it last night.

What can be said of David Cronenberg's Videodrome that has not already been voiced? It's a mind-bending odyssey of one man's total self-destruction as he surrenders himself to the blinding brilliance of the flickering television screen. Or is it? You can never really tell, and James Woods is stellar in the lead role. I still think I like Cronenberg's video game/VR analysis eXistenZ more but Videodrome is still aces all around.

We picked this up at Target while getting a few items for the house. Mom received a $50 giftcard for the store from Toni for Christmas. My sister Samantha got her Betty Boop pajama bottoms, a Dr. Scholl's massaging backpad, socks, and we got a brand new cordless phone, with embdedded caller ID. We needed a new phone badly; the old one was cordless but unless one pressed the star key before dialing you'd get a rotary sound as the number was dialed.

But I digress.

Eugenides' novel is purported to be a master work. I certainly hope so as I've tried to read the opening passage when I've seen it in stores at various other times but it didn't gel for me. Here's hoping another whack at it will result in a warm experience.

Syriana is a four-star film. Expect a review in the next fortnight. At first I thought Stephen Gaghan would end this thing with something terribly maudlin but then soon realized Syriana had no other way to end but how it did - the wheels keep turning, as we all know.

Lasagna and garlic bread await me.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

off to Best Buy!

Hey you! Yeah, you! Get your ass in gear and go pick up the best film of the year! I'm heading out to grab a bite to eat and pick up Serenity at Best Buy. Then at 4PM I'll be heading over to Robin's apartment where I'll unleash this awesome film upon her and her husband.

I'm off tomorrow also...and I WILL be seeing Syriana, dammit! Mark my words!

Monday, December 19, 2005

#1 on Amazon.com, baby!!! Yeah!!!

Tomorrow you can bring home the best movie of the year, as Universal Home Entertainment releases Serenity, the big-screen follow-up to Joss Whedon's unjustly cancelled FOX television series Firefly, which aired in 2002.

I was going to use the $15 Best Buy giftcard I have on this but my mother informed me that this is one of my Christmas gifts so that was pretty cool. We'll be getting up bright and early to go pick this up as I'm off tomorrow...and Wednesday. I'll post my thoughts on the extras and the DVD in its entirety. I also plan to hang out at Robin's and watch this over there, as she's not seen it and I most definitely want to see and hear her reaction to the film as it's running. She won't know WHAT hit her.

The Golden Globes are an interesting lot...I think Brokeback Mountain is going to clean up and it was no slouch at the box office this past weekend, taking in $2.2 million from only 69 theatres!

I've successfully hooked my mother on Veronica Mars! Disc 4 of Season One arrived from Netflix arrived today and I mailed back Disc 3 earlier today. Two more left. I also am able to rent at work, as my exorbitant account balance at work has been paid. I rented Danny Boyle's dark family film Millions and the Dark Castle Entertainment-produced House of Wax. I'm not expecting much but any movie in which we get to see a character played by Paris Hilton killed is pretty cool.

Arrested Development. It looks like there may just be a bidding war between ABC and Showtime over the series! Whoever wins, I sincerely hope they buckle down for the long run and pair this show with something great. A block of Weeds (and Mary-Louise Parker better win that Golden Globe!) and AD would be heaven. I truly think that Arrested Development can become a beloved institution, much like the very overrated Seinfeld.

I saw King Kong Saturday night. WOW. It was a great film, full of passion and wonderous beauty. It wasn't as great as the hype but then again nothing is. Go see this thing on the big screen; it deserves to be seen in that type of exhibition. The special effects are truly amazing. At no point in time do you think of King Kong as just another CGI creation - it feels like you are watching a very large silverback gorilla on screen.

I still need to see Syriana and will do so ASAP. Hopefully we'll get a few more arthouse flicks before the end of the year and many more after.

Chicken and dumplings is the dinner tonight. Yum.

Behold...the funniest damn thing I've seen on Saturday Night Live in at least five years. It's 'An SNL Digital Short' starring SNL cast member Chris Parnell and Featured Player Andy Samberg. The title of the short is "Lazy Sunday". Enjoy.

'An SNL Digital Short' - "Lazy Sunday"

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Veronica Mars-athon in progress...

I just stopped for a second to do some web-browsing.

At work, we had our annual holiday party at 9AM. I received this...

Our gift exchange is called "Chinese Christmas" by our manager. You most likely saw it referred to as "Yankee Swap" on last week's hilarious episode of The Office. A co-worker received a Gumby and a Pokey doll. Then I came home at 10AM, ate two bowls of Yogurt Burst Cheerios - Vanilla and quite yummy -, then slept from 12:30PM-4PM as I'd only had 2 hours of sleep.

I returned the Dane Cook CD I'd bought with my birthday money. The supervisor would only give me store credit. So I now have a $15 Best Buy giftcard. I may just save that to get Serenity on the 20th.

I watched Fantastic Four last night. It was an enjoyable film and not as horrible as everyone made it seem.

On Tuesday, my movie geek badge gets shinier and my love for film is intensified even more, as the awards season officially arrives with the announcement of the nominees for the...

Kate Beckinsale, Steve Carell and Mark Wahlberg will announce 2006 Golden Globe Awards nominations

Kate Beckinsale, Steve Carell and Mark Wahlberg will join Hollywood Foreign Press Association President Philip Berk in announcing the nominations for the 63rd Annual Golden Globe Awards at a 5:00 a.m. (PST) press conference on Tuesday morning, December 13, 2005.

Nominations will be announced in 24 categories. More than 400 media and publicists from around the world will attend the event Numerous radio and television outlets will carry the live announcements from the Beverly Hills Suite at the Beverly Hilton. The nominations press release will be distributed immediately following the announcement to media in attendance and via online at www.hfpa.org. As previously announced, Anthony Hopkins is this year’s recipient of the Cecil B. DeMille Award for lifetime achievement. Dakota Johnson, age 16, the daughter of Melanie Griffith and Don Johnson, is the 2006 Miss Golden Globe. She is the first daughter of a former Miss Golden Globe to ever be selected.

The 63rd Annual Golden Globe Awards will take place Monday, January 16, 2006 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel with a live telecast airing on NBC at 8 PM (EST) and produced by dick clark productions in association with the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Philip Berk is President of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Allen Shapiro and Barry Adelman are executive producers. Chris Donovan is director. Al Schwartz is consulting producer. Ken Shapiro is producer. Ron Weed is co-producer.

Advance word is that Brokeback Mountain is going to clean up. It's already won the Los Angeles Film Critics Association's Best Film and Best Director awards. I'd personally like to see Jenna Fischer get nominated and take home the Golden Globe for Best Actress In A Comedy Series as her role as Pam on NBC's The Office is pitch-perfect. And c'mon Golden Globes! You've GOT to give Kristen Bell an award for Best Actress In A Drama Series for Veronica Mars. There's simply no better actress in a dramatic series right now.

I'm off Tuesday so I may just get up early and watch the nominations live. Or have my best friend TiVo nab the Today show that morning. And if you have TiVo and you think it's NOT your best friend, then you are just so sad. Does a human friend always have new episodes of your favorite television series? I thought not.

Speaking of TiVo, SCI FI's miniseries The Triangle waits, as does their 2-hour movie Painkiller Jane. It's based on a 1995 comic book about a young woman who gains the power to heal quickly, along with increased strength and speed. The delectable Emmanuelle Vaugier (Saw II) stars. If it did well ratings-wise SCI FI will pick this up as a weekly series.

Friday, December 09, 2005

A legend was silenced...

(And for those of you who say it was 25 years ago yesterday...whatever...I was running late for work and couldn't post earlier)

John Lennon



When I was schlepping through the microcosm of middle school, going from class to class, one thing was a constant: the music of The Beatles. I became immersed in their lyrics, their life stories, the basic DNA of each member. While I enjoyed the music and wore out many Beatles t-shirts, only John Lennon stood out to me. As Paul wore out the songwriting lexicon of love until it was threadbare, John grew from writing the same type of wistful romantic tunes into a master wordsmith who married genius composition with smart, literate lyricism.

Listen to "Strawberry Fields Forever". Listen to "I'm So Tired". Listen to "I'm A Loser". "Yer Blues" is a powerful blast of raw energy. Then you get to his post-Beatles music. Just utter brilliance. "Working Class Hero" should be the national anthem. Of course we all know the big ones: "Imagine", "Instant Karma (We All Shine On), "Give Peace A Chance", and the annual "Happy Xmas (War Is Over)", never more timely than now.

To just think of all of the great music we've been denied, the political activism John would have been a part of, really makes us miss him even more. Five bullets severed our tie to one of the most commanding and real musicians of this or any century. John Lennon is gone; through his music, his writings and his words he will continue to inspire the mind and inflame the soul.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

well...alot's happened....

My mother is in the hospital. She had an infected ant bite on the front of her left leg and as she's diabetic, they wanted to admit her in order to pump her full of antibiotics and insulin. They lanced the bite, dug a small inflamed cyst out of the wound, packed it with gauze, and took a culture of the pus inside. She's been in there since Friday and HOPEFULLY they'll let her come home tomorrow. I've visited her twice with my sister, the latest being about six o'clock tonight. I've been feasting upon fast food and my birthday money is all but gone.

Hopefully I can return the Dane Cook CD I mistakenly purchased (I'd heard most of the material on the CD, unknown by me) so I can have some extra cash. I also have to purchase a small, under-$10 gift for our Christmas party at work. The theme is toy so I'm leaning towards a yo-yo. I also want to see Syriana, Aeon Flux (which was scheduled to be my birthday movie), and The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. I'd also like to see Keira Knightley in Pride and Prejudice before it leaves our area. And then there's, of course, King Kong on the 14th. This is the time of year when the good movies come out and I sincerely hope that we get some indie films in a timely manner. Plus there's the $26 balance on my account at work, which is partially Mom's fault as she wanted sodas late last week.

I've got Fantastic Four due to arrive tomorrow from Netflix. I've heard it's great popcorn fare and I shall treat it as such. I've also got sleeper cell, Showtime's new terrorism-related series to watch on TiVo, along with part one of SCI FI's The Triangle miniseries (produced by Dean Devlin, who produced Independence Day and Bryan Singer, director of both X-Men films andThe Usual Suspects). The cast includes Catherine Bell, Eric Stoltz, Sam Neill, and Lou Diamond Phillips. The Triangle debuted to stellar ratings last night, with 4.3 million viewers.

X-Men 3 Official Teaser Trailer

Click the poster to see the official teaser trailer for the Brett Ratner-helmed X-Men 3. I don't care how this trailer looks; I will not watch this movie. Ratner is a hack of the very worst kind and his movies always sacrifice competent storytelling for loud, dumb, garish action. This breaks my heart as X-Men was the one comic book I read religiously in elementary school. If Fox had simply waited, Bryan Singer would have been more than happy to make this film. But Tom Rothman and the morons at Fox are impatient morons, so in order to be truly petulant they wanted to beat Singer's Superman Returns to the theater. Whatever. I'll entertain myself with seeing Singer's film and various other films this summer. It truly doesn't matter what I say - the slack-jawed willfully ignorant masses will line up in droves, not caring that a hack with all the directing ability of a coffee table is behind the camera. Let them deaden their minds for two hours. I'll not suffer that fate.

Dominion: Prequel To The Exorcist was brilliant. It told a stripped-down, articulate story of one man's lack of faith and how he is tested and begins to believe in his convictions and beliefs after feeling like he has no purpose. Stellan Skarsgard was masterful and Schrader's direction was strong and true. One of the best films of the year, Dominion doesn't rely on shock scares and copious gore to convey its frightening notion that evil can be found anywhere, and that it's not always clearly defined as horror films usually present.

So I think I'm going to break out the summer sausage, the cheese ball, and the cracked pepper-flavored crackers (we got those at Fresh Market....oh my God! What a place! Fresh meat, fresh fruit, fresh *everything*!) in a minute.

More later of course...I'm off tomorrow then work Thursday-Saturday, 3:30-close. I hope to cram in many hours of TiVo-watching between now and then. I've also promised to tape the new season of Desperate Housewives for a co-worker who I hooked on the show. She's the same one I hooked on Firefly. Yep, she bought a copy of the show as well. Sadly, she missed Serenity in the theater but she's promised to throw a shindig at her and her husband's on the 20th when the DVD is released.

Your homework is this....


Lead singer Chantal Claret leads this band. They produce a sound that can veer from punk-sounding explosion to infectious pop-rock. Their debut CD, released by Capitol Records, is coming out January 10th and I can't wait. I haven't fallen in love with a band in a long time. I still need to pick up Tegan and Sara's So Jealous CD. Hell, I'm a White Stripes fan and Get Behind Me Satan is still not in my possession! Anyway, pick up Morningwood's CD. You won't regret it. To get a feel for them, here's music videos for "Jetsetter" and "Nth Degree", the first single from their upcoming CD.

Click here to rock the fuck out.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

wednesday. is. today.

Alright...so how was your giving of Thanks? Mine was stellar, until a disagreement broke out between my mother and sister over minute things. All is well now, however. Isn't that how the holidays are at times, though?

Laughter can be a relief. It can bring joy and solace to someone when they need it most. Leading up to and after the 2004 presidential election, the one thing I could compare to a comfortable bed after a long day of hard work was Air America Radio's Morning Sedition with Marc Maron and Mark Riley.

Click here and scroll down to the 14th for my expansive thoughts on the show.

Well, as of January 2nd, the show is no more. Yep, apparently AAR CEO Danny Goldberg doesn't want comedy in the mornings and was not impressed with the show's ratings. It's all in this press release:

Air America Mornings to Take Over Morning-Drive

Mark Riley and Rachel Maddow to Host Shows on “Air America Mornings”

NEW YORK-November 29, 2005- Air America Radio announced today a change in its morning line-up. Beginning Jan. 2, the new morning format, “Air America Mornings,” will broadcast weekdays from 5-9am EST. The announcement was made today by CEO Danny Goldberg.

Veteran radio talk show host and current co-host of “Morning Sedition,” Mark Riley, will lead off “Air America Mornings” from 5-7am EST. Riley will highlight the top news stories of the day and will also interview various guests every morning.

Rachel Maddow will take her highly-rated and acclaimed show, “The Rachel Maddow Show,” to the 7-9am EST slot. In addition to continuing to give listeners fast-paced news and witty soundbites, Maddow will also interview a variety of guests. Maddow has previously guest-hosted the highly successful “The Al Franken Show,” heard weekly 12-3pm EST and will do so again the week of December 12. Maddow continues her night job as contributor to MSNBC’s “The Situation with Tucker Carlson.”

Comedian and co-host of “Morning Sedition,” Marc Maron, is returning to Los Angeles and is currently in negotiations with Air America Radio to host his own syndicated show. He will be a regular contributor to “Air America Mornings”

Paul Marszaleck will serve as Executive Producer of “Air America Mornings.” Marszalek is a twenty five year veteran of radio and television, having served as Vice President of Music Programming at VH1/MTV Networks and having held senior management positions at KFOG/San Francisco and WXRT/Chicago. He has also consulted several NPR stations around the country and various stations and networks internationally.

"The upcoming year is going to be crucial year for Air America, for morning drive time radio in general, and for the United States. In the past several months, Rachel Maddow has experienced dramatic growth in visibility and audience and we are very excited about giving her a bigger stage. Mark Riley is a respected broadcaster and we are equally excited that he will shine in his new role,” said Goldberg. “At the same time, we are well aware of the intense and committed following that Marc Maron's brilliant work on Air America has created and would like him to be a major voice on Air America in the future. "

“We are very excited about the launch of ‘Air America Mornings,’ both in NY and across the Air America Network. Beginning in January, you will hear a tightly formatted, flawless presentation of the most important topics of the day by Mark and Rachel, as well most compelling guests from the world of politics and entertainment,” said President Gary Krantz. “We are also committed to generating at least one show in 2006 from Los Angeles to connect us more closely with the progressive creative community there, and thus to offer our affiliates a widening menu of politics, comedy, information, and entertainment."

“We are thrilled that we finally have found a way to display all three of these great talents on Air America Radio,” said President of Programming Jon Sinton.

With Mark and Rachel we have two of the most intelligent, engaging and committed broadcasters on the air today,” said COO Carl Ginsburg. “I would put them up against any talk radio hosts--- they are sharp, smart and ahead of the curve.”

Rachel Maddow has a Doctorate in Politics from Oxford University and a degree in Public Policy from Stanford. She was the first openly gay American to win a Rhodes Scholarship. Her background is in commercial radio (WRSI, WRNX) and political activism. Prior to launching "The Rachel Maddow Show," Rachel co-hosted Air America's "Unfiltered" with Chuck D and Lizz Winstead.

Mark Riley has been on the WLIB airwaves for more than 30 years, his seasoned experience produced such high-profile interviews with President Bill Clinton, President Nelson Mandela, Jean Bertrand Aristide, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Lena Horne, & Spike Lee to name a few. In addition to radio, Riley is a popular TV political analyst with bi-weekly appearances on the “Road to City Hall” on New York 1 News; commentary on BET, CNN, CBS Early Show, & MSNBC.

As I've previously stated, I've been an avid Marc Maron fan since the early '90s, when his stand-up would turn up on Comedy Central and then as host of that channel's Short Attention Span Theater. He is one of this generation's greatest comedy minds and if AAR doesn't find the right vehicle for his tremendous talent, then he needs to look elsewhere. I hope all works out...but it's still sad to see this brilliant, satirical liberal morning show get cancelled.

From Netflix I will (hopefully) be procuring the following two films tomorrow...


Word of mouth, along with Ebert and alot of other film critics, says that Mr. & Mrs. Smith is a fun, action-packed movie, with comedic bursts.

And then there's Dominion: Prequel To The Exorcist. Much has been said of Paul Schrader's film, which was intended to be released as Exorcist: The Beginning. Schrader was hired by Morgan Creek Productions to replace an ailing John Frankenheimer. Schrader lensed his film and turned it in. Upon seeing it, Morgan Creek founder and CEO James G. Robinson was incredulous and threw Schrader's version on the shelf. The reason? It wasn't an Exorcist film in Robinson's eyes. He wanted extensive gore and cheap scares. So he hired Renny Harlin, director of Die Hard 2: Die Harder, Cliffhanger, Cutthroat Island, The Long Kiss Goodnight and the more recent Mindhunters, to name a few, gave him a 90% re-written script and had him shoot a brand new movie, complete with the scenes he felt Schrader's film were lacking! Yes, twice as much money was spent! So after the Harlin version barely broke even and after Schrader's version was screened to critical acclaim at a Brussels film festival, Warner Brothers gave the film a short theatrical release in May and finally released it on DVD October 25th.

We just got it at work this weekend and had I known that I would have rearranged my queue on Netflix; however I didn't find this out until Monday morning. Oh well. In any case, it'll be interesting to see this film. I've not seen Harlin's on purpose to go into Dominion: Prequel To The Exorcist with a fresh point-of-view.

I have to work from 11PM-5AM tonight for store inventory. Hopefully we'll get some money soon. My father, whom I'm speaking to again, said he'd be sending a birthday check. I love my father and am reaching out to him. I was angry at him for many years for hurting my mother emotionally. I've come to terms with what happened (affair) and have realized that you only get one father. It's petty of me to let that stand in the way of quality time I could instead share with him.

I didn't mind to sound impetuous at the beginning of that last paragraph. We need some groceries ASAP and I'd like to be able to buy some breakfast on the way home after work early tomorrow morning. I'll keep you posted as always.

I'll probably be so sore after inventory but it's all in a day's work. Then I'm off Thursday and have to work on my fucking birthday, 6-close. It sucks beyond the telling of it but there's no one to cover it, as one of our assistant managers decided that, since he couldn't get anyone to cover his Wednesday and Thanksgiving shifts last week, he was going to be a no-call/no-show. Proper measures were taken to ensure the coverage was there, however, as his waffling on this issue was very anticipated. And then two other employees, who barely qualified as that, finally quit this week. They had another job (both are employed at said job) and were constantly giving their shifts away. So that's why I'm having to work on my birthday.

Festivities celebrating said birth will either be held on Thursday or early Friday or Sunday; I haven't decided yet. I had to quell my rage when I found that out but now I'm cool. I work 4-10 Saturday - ON THE FUCKING FLOOR! Grrrr....I hate that floor - especially on shop weekends, when a secret shopper comes in. It's fucking irritating!

TiVo is calling ever so much. I think I might buy a book with my birthday money. Maybe Al Franken's latest - The Truth (with jokes). I'm not certain yet. Well, that's all for now. Until next time here's a picture of the gorgeous Cobie Smulders from the very awesome CBS comedy How I Met Your Mother. *sigh* Le swoon...one day I'll marry a cool brunette who's wicked awesome. You'll see...you'll see...

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving!

As you feast upon bird today and sleep it off, have a great and happy holiday and don't forget what this day is for: remembering how our ancestors raped and pillaged the Native Americans and their land.

Oh, and it's about fellowship and togetherness. Although what would Thanksgiving be without a little dysfunction? Huh? How about just a smattering, then?

I'm TiVoing the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade and I'll be working from 12-6 and if a customer so much as cops an attitude with me or trots out their, "You're working on Thanksgiving?" spiel (Bitch, I'm getting paid time-and-a-half! I work every holiday! $ is good!), I'll drop-kick them.

Then after work is over, I'll be feasting at my sister's apartment. It'll be my mother, myself, my sister, her boyfriend, and their roommate and his girlfriend. They're frying a turkey, a ham will be cooked, my mother's making potato salad, I imagine stuffing will be involved; pumpkin pie will rear its decadent head. So whatever you do today, have fun, be safe, and enjoy yourself. I'll also be regaling myself with xm's Special X channel of quirky novelty Xmas songs.

BTW, I can safely say that The Office is my favorite comedy on television. It is aces all around.

Also, the company that made the leg lamps from A Christmas Story actually bought the house the movie was filmed in (on eBay!) and they're holding a fundraiser/movie screening/Q+A with some of the cast this weekend in Cleveland. The company plans to restore the home to its original look in the film (it's looking good so far) and then turn the home into A Christmas Story museum! Really cool!

Click the logo to visit the website.

A Christmas Story House

I'm off to watch a TiVoed episode of The Simpsons and then hit the hay. I'll leave you with this timeless holiday image. From Norman Rockwell's famous 1943 Four Freedoms series, this piece is entitled "Freedom From Want". Enjoy the holiday everyone.

Friday, November 18, 2005

radio to the power of x...

A while back, I had SIRIUS Satellite Radio. Air America Radio left their lineup, I did as well. I should have done more research instead of blindly jumping in headfirst with SIRIUS. I soon came to the realization that SIRIUS's playlists on all of their music channels was quite repetitive and overplayed, the very antithesis of what satellite radio should be. A big old yawn is what their music channels are.

I'd listened to their competitor, the #1 satellite radio service in America, xm.

xm satellite radio


And now, we have 72 channels of xm satellite radio on DIRECTV! It's really refreshing to hear great music. I love alternative rock, and xm delivers big with three (3), count them three channels:

All of the following channel descriptions are from xm's website for each respective channel.

Fred is where you'll find the music long ago banished from regular radio. This massive library of forgotten music has it's own home on Fred.

Fred likes the Violent Femmes, Simple Minds, Dead Milkmen, U2, New Order, Ministry, XTC, The Buzzcocks, R.E.M., Love & Rockets, The Damned, Bauhaus, The Ramones, Jesus & Mary Chain, Joy Division, X, Social Distortion, Talking Heads, Iggy Pop, The Replacements, Erasure and tons more can be heard on Fred.

The Killers of Alternative

Lucy is all about the most important and well known songs in the history of Alternative Music. While Fred, Ethel, Squizz and other XM Alt channels go deep, Lucy is about the encores...the giants...the defining songs of the generation. Non Stop. Just music. Just the killers. 24/7.

"A.K." Alternative Gems

On September 24th, 1991 alternative music entered a new era. Nirvana's Nevermind was released and grunge became a nationwide phenomenon. Taking the hand-off from Fred - XM 44, Ethel is here to satisfy your craving for all the tunes that have been released A.K. (After Kurt), all completely uncensored. If you don't know the music on Ethel, you may have been unconscious for the last decade...or you may have only been hearing the 3 singles they ever play on FM. On Ethel, expect to hear deep tracks from many HUGE artists...songs that were never played on the radio, but you know 'em cuz you bought the CD. Right?

I'd say it's a toss-up between ETHEL and LUCY as my favorite xm channels. xm has really outdone themselves: ETHEL is heads and shoulders above SIRIUS's alt-rock channel, Alt Nation, due to the simple fact that ETHEL, and every other xm music channel, has one thing SIRIUS is afraid of: a much, much deeper playlist. The reason people purchase satellite radio is to not hear the same top ten songs over and over and over, or the same worn-out top ten songs from a decade or so ago. Case in point, xm is currently airing a theme show on ETHEL, Faded Flannel. It's nothing but great, iconic grunge songs from the early '90s, from bands that rose to prominence from the Pacific Northwest. THAT'S dedication to a genre and THAT'S only one of the reasons xm's kicking SIRIUS's ass in subscribers and marketing. Sure, SIRIUS will amp up their marketing and whatnot when Howard Stern arrives in January, but so what? One shock jock does not a great service make.

There ARE two other channels I also enjoy...

From Grunge to Hip Hop; Techno to Soft Hits. From Old School to R&B; Freestyle Dance to Teen Pop Sensations. The music of the 90s MEANS diversity. And the 90s on 9 brings all the different music styles and the excitement to you 24 hours a day.

Join us for personalities that are fun and upbeat, lots of special guests from the music and entertainment world of the 90s, and all the flavors of music that make the 90s unique!


The Virus Returns. Spread the Virus.

Beware, this is radio like you've never heard it before. Irreverent, uncensored, so good you won't want to stop listening. Featuring outrageous radio from Opie & Anthony, weekday mornings 7-11AM ET with additional encores around the clock. And, the "Best Of Opie and Anthony" all weekend. Plus, Ron and Fez join the antics on High Voltage. These two comics jump on the air right after Opie & Anthony and deliver non-stop laughter each weekday morning from 11AM - 2PM ET, encores at Midnight ET.

In the early-mid 90s, there was one and only one radio show I adored...I would purchase Maxell blank cassette tapes in the summer and tape show after show after show. I would get up at 6AM almost every weekday morning, turn on WZAT-FM (Z102 - Savannah's Rock & Roll Radio; it's now a crappy Top 40/Hot Adult Contemporary hybrid owned by Cumulus Broadcasting), and bask in the aural glory that was The Ron & Ron Show. Hosted by Ron Diaz, Ron Bennington, and the larger-than-life Fez Marie Whatley, it was comedic gold. They had various characters ("Andre The Giant", "Iris", a crotchety old woman, many others) and Paul-O, their resident movie reviewer who was also their go-to guy whenever they'd want to do a stunt (when Tupac Shakur got a tattoo of the words "Thug Life" on his stomach, they made Paul-O get one too; on New Year's Eve 1996, he was sent, in an adult diaper, to area fast food restaurants and convenience stores to relieve himself). The guys would also devote shows to certain topics - overrated bands, cartoons; one show was Ron Bennington telling the guys how he'd knock out various animals. I simply cannot do the show justice.

St. Patrick's Day 1996, Fez and Paul-O came to Savannah. I actually went with my mother at 9:30 at night and met Fez at the airport. There were only a handful of us but Fez was gracious and happy to see us. The next day he and Paul-O were at the Saturn of Savannah car dealership where I got a Ron&Ron black license plate, ate a few hot dogs, drank some Coke, and chatted with the guys.

After Ron Diaz left the show, various other Rons were tried and then Clear Channel bought the company that owned the show's syndication rights and didn't pick up the show. I was crestfallen. I'd heard of Ron & Fez having their own show on various stations throughout the years: the now-defunct-as-a-rock-station WKRO in Orlando, WNEW in New York, WJFK in D.C., always wishing I could hear them again.

NOW I CAN! It's been a breath of fresh air hearing them again, although Fez had a mild heart attack last week. He's fine - he had an angioplasty and will be back in two weeks (The show's going on a break next week for Thanksgiving). Fez also found out he has diabetes. He's called in a few times (the latest being during today's show). So get well Fez!

Sorry if this was long-winded but I'm happy to have my favorite radio show back.

I'm also really loving xm and am seriously considering picking up their portable receiver for only $99, since they've got some really good discount deals for DIRECTV customers. They also have a car unit available for only $49!

I will be seeing Good Night, And Good Luck this weekend, and maybe Walk The Line.

Masters of Horror is on tonight. Steven Weber scripted and stars in this Dario Argento (Suspiria)-directed episode, "Jenifer" about a cop who becomes obssessed with a very unique young woman.

The first two discs of the first season of Veronica Mars are winging their way to me via Netflix. I've already converted my mother into a Desperate Housewives fan. Now to make her love the best show on television!

Also on the 'TO WATCH' pile from work are Kingdom of Heaven and Layer Cake. I'll update you with any progress I make, TiVo or film-wise.

And South Park really skewered the false heterosexuality of Tom Cruise and the false religion of Scientology in their recent episode, "Trapped In The Closet". It replays all weekend; check it out, it's hilarious.

The Comedians of Comedy airs at 8PM on Showtime tonight. It's a feature-length documentary about the comedy tour of some of the best comedians around today: Patton Oswalt, Brian Posehn, Zach Galifianakis, and Maria Bamford. It's also a series on Comedy Central, but they're both different. By that I mean it's different footage - the series is more about their journey on the road, while I'd imagine the movie features more of each comic's respective stand-up routine.

Friday, November 11, 2005


'Arrested Development' gets the axe

If FOX does can this, I sincerely hope that NBC picks it up. Imagine a Tuesday night comedy monolith...

8PM - My Name Is Earl
8:30PM - Scrubs
9PM - The Office
9:30PM - Arrested Development

I'd be there every Tuesday. Plus, I truly believe that the viewer retention going into Arrested Development would be very high. So, c'mon NBC! Make us AD fans happy and make Tuesday nights one of the best nights for comedy, only on The Peacock!

Congrats to Conan O'Brien and his wife, Liza. Beckett O'Brien was born Wednesday in New York.

Moustapha Akkad, daughter, dead in Jordan bombings


Rest In Peace, Moustapha. You and your daughter will live in our hearts forever as I know you both shall in Heaven.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

My new personal hero!

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV)

He kicked asses all over Washington today by demanding the Senate go into closed session. The move was made to shine an extremely bright light on the shoddy, faulty pre-Iraq war intelligence and it made ALOT of noise today. Kudos to him. Mr. Reid, keep up the great damn job! Hold these Republican bastards accountable!!!

Democrats Force Senate Into Closed Session Over Iraq Data

So last night I spent at the apartment of Robin and her husband. We ate Pizza Hut, Cheetos, that awesome cheese ball thing with Wheatables, mini-3 Musketeers, and drank copious amounts of Dr. Pepper while we watched Night Of The Living Dead, Fright Night, and The Monster Squad. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) was out of the running, though, as both of my hosts went back and forth as to who didn't feel like watching it. It seems that they'd both seen the horrible, awful remake, and were discomforted by it. I tried to convince them that the original shows no gore but it was a lost cause, although they were open for watching it later. I will prevail in that endeavor. Both really loved Night Of The Living Dead. They'd purchased The Howling at Best Buy yesterday and I borrowed it. Now to finally get some time to watch it. TiVo beckons ever so much!

Monday, October 31, 2005

Have a spooky day!

Everyone have a wonderful, great day today! I'll be going to a co-worker's apartment after work. She and her husband are having a horror movie marathon and I'll be bringing Night Of The Living Dead, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974), and the always awesome cult classic '80s horror-comedy (only available on out-of-print VHS currently) The Monster Squad. So hopefully it'll be a ghoulish time for all involved. Sorry. But when else can one use these adjectives, except on Halloween?

In any case, have fun and stay safe whatever you do today and tonight!

Friday, October 28, 2005

Some disappointing news but oh well...

I will be unable to attend the Savannah Film Festival as I am broke. But at least Good Night, And Good Luck will start playing at Wynnsong next Friday.

Also, The Horror Channel was due to launch on DISH Network and various other cable outlets at midnight this morning, on The Men's Channel. It didn't. They've posted a response to the delay on their website, HorrorChannel.com

Dear Fans,

It is with regret that we were not able to bring you our special first night of on-air programming. We were notified by our host, The Men's Channel, late yesterday that there was a technical issue that would result in the delay of our much-anticipated launch. We are currently working overtime with our partners to overcome this delay and bring you the successful launch of the first ever dedicated horror programming at the soonest possible time.

For those of you that may have subscribed to DISH recently on the basis that The Horror Channel was debuting but now wish to cancel your installation, you may contact DISH and notify them that you would elect to re-subscribe once The Horror Channel debuts. We continue to urge all horror fans to call their local cable or satellite provider and "Scream for The Horror Channel!"

In the meantime, consistent with our "No Fan Left Behind" campaign, please tune in to our website (www.HorrorChannel.com) on November 11th to watch the launch show, A Tribute to George A. Romero in its entirety. You will be able to view it on your PC, and if you are a broadband subscriber, you may be able to view the program in full screen with little or no buffering time. We will be making additional public announcements regarding The Horror Channel Online broadband channel in the near future.

Despite the technical difficulties in airing our launch, we nonetheless were able to unveil the show to a packed private reception at the Chiller Theatre Convention last night. Among the attendees was none other than George A. Romero himself. The show was a huge hit, and the crowd went wild!

Please be patient as we work through our growing pains. We are diligent and steadfast in our quest to bring to you, our dedicated fans, the first 24-hour cable television horror channel. Stay tuned!!

--Nick Psaltos, Founder, and John Giunti, Co-Founder

I just want this damn thing on the air! Hopefully all of the legal red tape will get sorted out soon. It's a shame that different variables and roadblocks keep popping up but I wish them the best.

Today, we called DIRECTV and ordered Showtime. For tonight, they'll be unleashing...

Masters Of Horror

Pop some popcorn, turn off the lights, and get ready, fellow horror fans!

Showtime's Official Masters Of Horror website

The Official Masters Of Horror website

A Yahoo! News Article About The Series

Masters Of Horror brings together the creative minds of horror's greatest nightmares, including John Carpenter (Halloween), Tobe Hooper (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974), Poltergeist), Joe Dante (The Howling), John Landis (An American Werewolf In London), Dario Argento (Suspiria), Don Coscarelli (Phantasm), and many more, for an anthology of 13 all-new one-hour horror films. Upcoming installments will be helmed by other genre faves including John McNaughton (Henry: Portrait Of A Serial Killer), Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator), and Japan's famed horror auteur Takashi Miike (Audition).

The directors could bring a story of their own or use one already published.

The series will replay on Comcast ON DEMAND and each weekend at 10PM after it debuts that Friday.

Tonight's installment is "Incident On And Off A Mountain Road", based on a short story by Joe R. Lansdale. It was directed by Don Coscarelli and co-stars Angus Scrimm, otherwise known as The Tall Man from the Phantasm films.


A woman seemingly at the mercy of the serial killer who has kidnapped her turns out to be more resourceful and cunning than expected.

Upcoming films in the series include...

"Dreams In The Witch House" - Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator) returns to the work of horror novelist H.P. Lovecraft for this story about a physics student experiencing visions of another dimension where sinister forces conspire to kill his neighbor's baby.

"Dance Of The Dead" - Director Tobe Hooper and writer Richard Christian Matheson (son of novelist and Twilight Zone writer Richard Matheson) adapt this classic short story about a naive young woman who discovers the horrifying secret behind her survival of a nuclear holocaust.

"Jenifer" - Dario Argento directs this version of the classic comic book about a girl with eerie powers who destroys the life of a police officer (Steven Weber, who also adapted the script).

"Chocolate" - Writer/director Mick Garris's story of a divorced young man (Henry Thomas, best known as Elliot from E.T.) who creates artificial food flavors for a living and starts to experience sensual psychic flashes from a woman with whom he falls in love.

"Homecoming" - Directed by Joe Dante, "Homecoming" depicts terror and scandal when the media discovers that the living dead has swayed the Presidential election. This adaptation of Dale Bailey's award-winning short story "Death & Suffrage" blends zombie horror and contemporary political satire with chilling results.

"Deer Woman" - A series of bizarre murders lead a cynical detective (Brian Benben, HBO's Dream On) to suspect that an ancient Native American mythological creature is real in this sexually-charged horror comedy, directed by John Landis and written by Landis and his son Max.

"Cigarette Burns" - John Carpenter directs this script by Drew McWeeny (also known as Moriarty at entertainment website Ain't It Cool News) and Scott Swan. Kirby Sweetman knows how to find rare film prints. However, nothing could prepare him for the daunting search of 'Le Fin Absolue du Monde', a film allegedly shown only once and rumored to have driven its audience into a murderous frenzy before the theater mysteriously erupted into flames. Working for a shadowy patron, Jimmy's increasingly obsessive investigation becomes nightmarish and deadly. Finally he discovers 'Le Fin Asbolue du Monde''s infamy is well deserved. This supernatural Chinatown is a chilling look at the power of cinema and the lengths to which we will go to satiate our private demons.

"Fair-Haired Child" - From the director of House On Haunted Hill (1999). Tara, a lonely 13-year old outcast, is kidnapped and locked in a basement with their 13-year old child Johnny. Despite the fact that he is kind and sensitive, Johnny keeps a terrible secret. These two children form a special bond to find a way to battle a curse and survive the night. The film stars Lori Petty.

"Pick Me Up" - From the writer of The Crow comes this tale, directed by Larry Cohen (writer of Phone Booth, writer/director of the It's Alive! trilogy). Two urban legends collide on a desolate roadside when Wheeler, a serial killer who slays hitchhikers, offers a ride to Walker, a hitchhiker who slays any individual unlucky enough to offer him a ride. Caught between these two bearers of death and destruction is our heroine, a 25 year old woman who will need to choose her ally carefully or become another bloody notch on a belt in this deadly game of cat & mouse.

"Haeckel's Tale" - When Ernst Haeckel seeks shelter from the wilderness in a secluded cabin in the New England countryside, he is given one explicit instruction: No matter what he hears, he cannot go outside. As the cries of an unseen baby intermix with horrifying guttural moans, Haeckel disobeys his host and becomes embroiled in an orgy of the undead. Based on Clive Barker's short story, "Haeckel's Tale" is a sexually-charged campfire story with a terrifying twist.

"Imprint" - Japanese horror master Takashi Miike searches the corpse-strewn riverbanks of 19th-century Japan in this tale of an American journalist escaping a dark secret. Hoping to find the love he left behind, the journalist's hunt leads to a dark island where the only refuge is a brothel. Spending the night with a unique woman, he learns the danger of dredging up old ghosts. Based on an acclaimed Japanese novel.

"Sick Girl" - Lucky McKee (May) directs this gender-bending lesbian love story about two women and the bug that got between them.

So I'm very excited for this! Plus, hopefully there'll be some good horror movies on the Showtime networks in the coming days. I also have TiVo to wade through. More posting will follow soon. I plan to review the Masters Of Horror episodes as they air, and will hopefully have a movie review or two to post in the very near future.

HBO & The Creator of Six Feet Under To Reunite For New Vampire Series

I've always debated whether or not to read the 'Southern Vampire' novels. Now I have a good reason to.

And here's the teaser trailer for Final Destination 3.


I can't wait! Plus it's good to see Glenn Morgan and James Wong returning to the franchise they created.

Friday, October 14, 2005

I *WILL*, dammit!


Yes, it's that time again. Time to shake off the shackles of tyranny and oppression that mainstream cinema usually foists upon us year in and year out.

The institution that owns this city's lifeblood whether or not the city wants to admit it or not, SCAD (Savannah College Of Art And Design) is putting on the annual film festival. It's been going strong since 1998, I do believe. Click the logo to see this year's screening schedule.

As much as I bitch about SCAD not coming through with an indie/arthouse theater downtown, they've really come through with this year's lineup. Time permitting (and it better!), I'll be seeing George Clooney's directorial debut good night, and good luck.

That'll be preceded by a tribute to director Sidney Lumet. I hope his new movie Find Me Guilty is good.

Then there's a conflict: do I see Noah Baumbach's (co-screenwriter of The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou) The Squid And The Whale or the "Project Greenlight"-birthed horror film Feast? I know Feast will be on alot of screens whenever the Weinsteins decide to release it so maybe I'll skip that in favor of the indie film, since Savannah's never too kind on arthouse films.

The Squid And The Whale
will have one of its stars, Jeff Daniels, in attendance. It's getting really good reviews, raves even. I think that will be my choice, between Feast and this.

On Wednesday, November 2nd at 7PM there'll be a "Special Screening" of a highly anticipated film due out this holiday season from a major studio. I don't care what it is; that's intriguing.

Earlier that day, a customer from work has a film of hers screening at 3PM, Red Thread. The website's at www.redthreadthemovie.com

I'll try to go but I might be working at 3PM that day. I just hope that my schedule is somewhat normal (i.e. back to its original format) so that I can see these screenings, as most are in the evening.

Thursday, November 3rd at 7PM is the screening of the Pierce Brosnan-Greg Kinnear starrer The Matador.

www.miramax.com/matador is the official site, BTW. It's a joint distribution between the new Miramax films and The Weinstein Company, the Weinstein brothers new shingle. Wow, a nice website for the film when the Weinstein guys don't even have one for their new movie company yet!

But I digress.

Friday, November 4th sees the enchanting Ellen Burstyn honored for her remarkable body of work. She was cruelly robbed of the Oscar she deserved for Requiem For A Dream, in favor of the boring offal known as Erin Brockovich and Mrs. Horse Teeth.

Anyway, after her well-deserved honor, the much-buzzed about Capote will unspool. It's about Truman Capote during the time when he was writing In Cold Blood. I will be there for this!

And closing night sees animation giants Don Bluth and Gary Goldman honored for their works. I was a big fan of An American Tail so I'm happy for Bluth and Goldman. Following this, the closing night film will be the first incarnation of Pride And Prejudice in 65 years. It stars my future wife, Keira Knightley. Yeah, I know I'm dreaming.

Come hell or water high, I will attend this. I'm through talking. I keep meaning to attend. But meaning isn't doing and I'm going to put my money where my mouth is. So if you're in the area and want to see some cool new movies that don't turn your brain into nacho cheese or want to attend filmmaking workshops, stroll into our fair city for a fun time.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

oh yeah...

There's a brand spanking new episode of

Night Stalker=
Click the Night Stalker logo for more info.

tonight at 9PM on ABC. I've still got the second episode to watch. I'm lukewarm on it so far. I'm a fan of Stuart Townsend, Gabrielle Union is a marvelous actress, and Frank Spotnitz is proven but I don't know yet. My work schedule is all out of sorts so until I'm back on mornings, I may have to sacrifice this for FOX's Reunion when it returns in November. The only other option is if ABC does the smart thing and posts podcasts on ABC.com to catch up viewers who may have missed an episode, like FOX is doing.

When I get paid (or if I can trade in 11 or so DVDs at work..hell I don't know if I have that many to trade), I need to pick up Veronica Mars: The Complete First Season. No extras to speak of, besides an extended version of the pilot episode and some deleted scenes. Oh well. We got a voicemail Tuesday at work saying that they'd sent the show to the stores as rental-ready but then realized that it wasn't bought for the stores for rental. So if stores want Veronica Mars for rent, they'll have to use the allocated store funds to bring it in. But guess what? That little treasure has been suspended until further notice because we don't know how to make money for our store? WTF? Like it's our fault?! So I think when cooler corporate heads prevail (perhaps mid-November), I may just buy Veronica Mars and then trade it in so we can get rent it. It's the best damn show on television and more eyeballs need to see it.

It was also nice to see Related's audience fall 30% last night from its debut last week. I love Lizzy Caplan (she was spot-on in Mean Girls) and I'm happy she has a show, but I'm ecstatic that Veronica Mars got the ratings win for Wednesday. I hope Veronica and the entire gang of 09ers and non-09ers is around for a very, very long time. And Joss Whedon's cameo as a rental car company manager will be in episode six, which is titled Rats Saw God.

tremendous thoughts...

Well, well, well...I've casually wasted my two days off. I was off yesterday and today; I work tomorrow and Saturday 4-close. And TiVo is patiently waiting for me, like a sad and forlorn puppy. It's because I'm addicted to...

98.3 JACK FM - playing what we want
and have sadly been forsaking my TV-watching duties. I'll also add in there DVD screener-watching duties. I may rectify that tonight, or stay up late and watch alot of stuff.

Here's a recent music log of the new station.

98.3 JACK FM Music Log

I'm trying to correct my blogging lack thereof. I will try harder, I promise.

Pink Is The New Blog
Click the candles.

Pink Is The New Blog has quickly become a daily read of mine. It's a great pop-culture treat, with webmaster Trent gathering up all of the movie, celebrity, music, and television news and gossip, hitting puree' on the blender and serving up a very witty and entertaining website. Check it out; you'll be bookmarking it before you're done reading it.

More later if the mood compells me and thoughts strike me.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

The before bed post...

Well to recap I've now seen Serenity 5 times. It just keeps getting better and better, folks.

I have a review of that film to post as well as the one I saw tonight (and really enjoyed) A History Of Violence. Let's just say that Cronenberg is back...not that he went anywhere.

I purchased Fiona Apple's new CD Extraordinary Machine. I'm mulling it over. I think this one will be a slow burn so I'm going to spin it several more times.

Stephen King's new crime novella The Colorado Kid is out. It's a throwback to the old pulp detective novels of the '40s. Yes, I bought it. New Stephen King for only $5.99? You know I'm there.

And in really good news...

Our main Oldies station here in Savannah, Triad Broadcasting's WGCO-FM (formerly Oldies 98.3) has been around for more than eleven years. It's always had a very loyal audience. But after what happened today at 10AM, I imagine they'll all be flocking to Cumulus Broadcasting's less-than-a-year-old Oldies station WTYB-FM, Cool 103.9...

That's right, ladies and gentlemen! We now have an official JACK FM station in Savannah! ABC Radio Networks distributes JACK FM and that's what WGCO is using. I was just bemoaning the fact the other day that I was tired of Freedom 104.7, the lame imitator of JACK FM locally.

JACK FM is all about the presentation. Plus the playlist is killer.

Clueless as to what the hell I'm talking about? Click the following link.


No new website or logo has been released yet. I hope that will change very soon.

So this new radio station was a rather nice discovery today.

I'll try to blog some more this weekend but TiVo is filled to overflowing presently and I have several DVD screeners from work to watch, chief among them High Tension, Happy Endings and The Mangler Reborn which I've heard is excellent.

Friday, September 30, 2005


It has finally arrived!!!

Serenity - In Theaters Nationwide!

All of the waiting is over as Joss Whedon's directorial debut, a feature-film adaptation of his cancelled 2002 FOX television series Firefly is resurrected on the big screen today nationwide as a Big Damn Movie called Serenity.

Are we ready?

We've poured every ounce of energy we have into bringing new Browncoats into the fold. Now is the time we reap the rewards we so richly deserve. But we mustn't rest on our laurels. Joss is counting on us to return in droves next weekend and we WILL. We bought the DVDs en masse, we made alot of converts...and I converted yet *another* person at work today; a girl returned Firefly then told me she'd just bought the DVD set at Media Play; yet another said she and her husband couldn't wait to see the movie. Then someone called and asked if we had Firefly in for rent. Guess what? It had already been checked out by one of our regulars mere minutes after it'd come in. I feel something growing here folks...

But I digress.

In 2002, Joss Whedon didn't just create a new television series. He created something alive and tangible, a cold splash of water in the face of what sci-fi had become: staid, tired, and predictable. This 'Verse lives and breathes. It brings us all together.

We rose from the ashes like a metaphorical phoenix, dusted ourselves off and did not go quietly into that good night (to steal a line from a really famous person) when FOX lopped us off at the knees. We were steadfast and resolute. Joss was just as dedicated, if not more so.

Now we have our BDM and I feel like it's the night before Christmas. Is anyone else on pins and needles?

To Universal - you are a shining light in a sea of low-watt bulbs. Mary Parent and Scott Stuber, you're both amazing. You saw that Joss's track record speaks volumes and did something other studios get scared to do: you took a chance. So to one of Hollywood's oldest movie studios, I say thank you a million times over.

To the cast - thank you for bringing to life some of the most brilliantly realized characters I've ever seen in any medium. True Joss's writing is lyrical magic but there are horrible ways to screw up brilliant dialogue. Thankfully, each cast member added their own special touches and flourishes on Firefly to make their character uniquely original. To all of you, please realize that the devotion of all of us faithful goes above and beyond --whatever future projects arise, we will support you. BTW, good luck with Slither in January, Nathan! :)

And finally to Joss - I saw Buffy The Vampire Slayer in the theater in 1992. Yes, I did and I enjoyed it for what I thought it was, not realizing it had been severely truncated. Looking back, I'd have liked to have seen your version on the big screen. Little did I know that it would become one of the best television series ever. I loved Angel as well. Firefly is the icing on the icing-covered dessert thing. Thank you immensely for this. You create worlds, characters, and dialogue that stir the imagination and awaken the soul. A million and five thank yous, sir, for all that you've done, for all of us.

As for our BDM, I'm seeing it at 1:30 tomorrow afternoon, then again at 4:10. I'll be seeing it several more times this weekend also, then back again next weekend.

It's our time. This is our very shiny moment.

Fellow Browncoats, let's soar!

Friday, September 23, 2005

From the land of awesomeness...

This sounds great!

Click here for the Variety article

Whedon's a 'Goner' for U
Universal pacts with 'Buffy' man for spec script


Universal Pictures has paid seven figures for Goners, a fantasy thriller spec script Joss Whedon wrote and will direct.

Film will be produced by [former Universal production execs] Mary Parent and Scott Stuber (producers of Serenity). The studio premiered Whedon's directorial debut, Serenity on Thursday night at Universal City Walk. Pic opens Sept. 30.

Whedon was cryptic in describing the project, but the title conveys that it will tread on supernatural turf comparable to his series creations Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the bloodsucker spinoff Angel.

"It's the story of a young woman's journey that involves a great deal of horror and some heroics," he said. "It's certainly darker than Serenity,' and there are a lot of left turns along the way. It is something I had in mind for a while, and it just poured out of me when I finished my film."

Timing isn't clear, since Whedon is writing to direct Wonder Woman, the Warner Bros. film based on the DC Comics. That may take some time, as Whedon started his script from scratch.

"I was given license to purely make it my own and yet she is already an iconic Amazon princess," Whedon said. " Goners has some similarities, but the heroines could not be more different, and the story is a bit more intimate and less complicated than Wonder Woman. "

Whedon, who began his career writing features Speed and Toy Story shuttered his TV operation this year to focus on features. He will continue to spend the majority of his time with bigscreen fare but acknowledged he has been toying with a TV project that would continue the Buffy the Vampire Slayer universe, focusing on Spike, the punk-haired vampire played by James Marsters.

Whedon's challenge is to figure a way to do it and be able to keep directing movies.

"Directing a film was as exciting and daunting as it was supposed to be," said the CAA-repped Whedon. "I learned a lot on Serenity and hope I hid that from the audience."

Is there ANYTHING this man can't do? I'll bet he makes tasty omelettes too!

our story begins...

Less than one week until the BDM comes out! Woo-hoo! I'll be residing at the movie theater for the two weeks or more following! I hope you all enjoy Serenity. I can't wait! After years of waiting, the wonderful world of Whedon will hit the big screen in a big way next Friday.

So, I have a new schedule at work. I will be working 4-close Tuesdays-Thursdays starting in two weeks. I already worked this schedule this week but will work my old schedule of 9-6 Monday-Thursday as our manager will be in Memphis at the annual store manager conference all week.

Last night was interesting. An A/C technician came out to work on one of the store's units. He was there for about 45 minutes. He said that he'd restarted the system and that he couldn't get on the roof to inspect it as it was wet from rain that had fallen earlier in the evening.

So I sign his invoice, stamp it, and on his way he goes. All is well until about an hour later, when the store short circuits. Basically four out of the five computers went out, half of the store's lights dimmed and half of the televisions went out. So after being unable to contact the store manager and telling our senior assistant manager, we closed at 9PM in order to call computer support and figure out what was going on.

There was no power going to the outlet in which the affected computers were located. We tried turning off and on the circuit breakers as usual, but all that did was knock out the one working computer. So we were given another number and the service rep said they'd said someone out immediately. Our senior assistant manager was there by then. The electrician came 30 minutes later and long story short said that there was a blown 150 amp circuit breaker. One of these can power a whole house, by the way. He had to leave and drive almost an hour back to his office to get two (in case one blew) replacements. So we whiled away the time watching Family Guy Presents Stewie Griffin: The Untold Story in the store as UPS had delivered our rental product for next Tuesday earlier that evening. The movie is very, very, funny but not as funny as I'd hoped. It's still worth a rental as many jokes will have you in tears.

Anyway, the electrician came back about an hour and fifteen minutes later. He replaced the part (with a 200 amp circuit) and said that there might be a blown compressor in one of our A/C units. I mentioned the malfunction we'd had with the unit a month ago. He said that that was probably the issue and that the A/C tech must have overloaded the circuit by recharging the unit. Before leaving he said he'd be back today with the normal 150 amp part. So we checked in all of the movies, ran the majority of them as our senior AM got the deposit squared away, and amscrayed. We left the store at about 1:15 this morning. I called the senior AM today and he said that the electrician had been by before the store opened.

That was my Thursday night and early Friday morning! ;)

In other news, I'm going crazy as I have to schedule TiVo to record various shows and then set up the VCR in the living room to record others...on the same damn night, no less! What's with these networks, huh? Scheduling kick-ass shows on the same night and time?! It boggles the mind.

And we have our first official cancellation of the Fall 2005 TV season, folks!

FOX's 'Head Cases' First On The Chopping Block

And for the record, I am a huge fan of Adam Goldberg...and his girlfriend Christina Ricci. I tried the pilot and it just didn't gel in my opinion. The incredible erosion of the audience it garnered sealed its fate.

Tonight CBS trots out Jennifer Love Hewitt as the....

Ghost Whisperer

Advance word isn't good and likens this to Medium with tinkly piano music and no ghosts helping solve crimes. I'll still TiVo it though. I'm a fall TV completist, except in the case of NBC's new drama that premieres tonight. It conflicts with the TiVo-ing of Battlestar Galactica.

Fox unveils its latest entry into the crowded crime procedural genre with the formerly titled The Gate and then the awesomely titled Deviant Behavior. It's now called...

The series deals with the cases of the Deviant Behavior Unit of the San Francisco Police Department. My future wife Marguerite Moreau was fired after the pilot and Kristen Lehmann replaces her in episode two. I hope the series is good but I'm still pissed about them firing Moreau. At least the always awesome Chi McBride is in this.

Tonight's episode deals with a man releasing spiders into women's apartments who bite the women. The spider bites carry a paralyzing toxin, thus the women can't move. The man then rapes and murders these women.

At 10PM tonight, NBC unveils its new fertility clinic drama, Inconceivable. I can hear the keyboard and pen clicks of various red-staters now. The critical word on this is, despite the solid presence of Ming Na, this show isn't that good. And if you're an Alfre Woodard fan, don't get too attached: she's only in the pilot. Remember, she's the newest resident of Wisteria Lane now.

And my new Friday night series is the great-to-munch-popcorn-while-you-watch Threshold on CBS at 9PM. It's incredibly good and I hope Brannon Braga and David S. Goyer can keep the momentum going.

Sunday night the genius that is Ricky Gervais will invade HBO as his new series Extras debuts. I can't wait.

I also have NBC's blockbuster new comedy My Name Is Earl and the second season premiere of The Office to TiVo later this weekend. Ah, how I love corporate synergy! It allows me to TiVo repurposed shows to fit my schedule (i.e. the aforementioned shows on Bravo, NBC's new sci-fi series from The Pate Brothers, Surface, on SCI FI).

As far as the Emmys go...well...um.....

Click Here for all of my thoughts.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Tonight's the night...



Comedy Series - I want Arrested Development to win. But Desperate Housewives will be the belle of the ball and sweep everything that's not nailed down. Oh well...it's a great show also.

Actor In A Comedy - Jason Bateman. As the head-strong head of his family, it's due time Hollywood recognized the perfect comedic timing of this very underused actor.

Actress In A Comedy - Alot of people think the ladies of Wisteria Lane will cancel each other out; I beg to differ. This is Teri Hatcher's award as she's done her TV duty. She deserves it.

Supporting Actor In A Comedy - Jeffrey Tambor is awesome, but Jeremy Piven is my pick and the winner. He embued Entourage with its snarky heart and tenaciously outward venom. He was truly stellar.

Supporting Actress In A Comedy - Jessica Walter. As the matriach of the criminally clueless Bluth family (save son Michael), Walter is pitch perfect as the always soused Lucille. But again, mediocrity will give this one to Doris Roberts.

Directing For A Comedy Series - I was torn on this. But after seeing which episodes were nominated, I must cast my lot for Desperate Housewives. It did what a pilot should do, introduce its characters, give a taste of what's to come, and closed on an "What the hell's going to happen next moment", all brilliantly lensed by Charles McDougall. I think it will win the Emmy.

Writing For A Comedy Series - Arrested Development is again, brilliant. But as previously stated, Desperate Housewives was last season's breakout smash and will garner another Emmy here, for Marc Cherry's dark and delicious pilot episode.

Drama Series - Could it be? Could this be 24's year for Emmy gold? I certainly hope so, as last season was the best so far. I can't wait for Season Five in January. Sci-fi is never given respect at the Emmys, so the foul-mouthed denziens of David Milch's Deadwood will pick up the award.

Actor In A Drama
- Ooh. Tough contest here. Hugh Laurie deserves an Emmy for his portrayal of the brilliant yet tortured Dr. Gregory House. Kiefer was excellent on 24, as was James Spader's cool as a cucumber Alan Shore on Boston Legal, but Ian McShane will add to his Golden Globe win with another accolade for his mantlepiece.

Actress In A Drama - Patricia Arquette brought humanity and soul to a role that could have seem phoned in. Add in Glenn Gordon Caron's well-written scripts and that makes Medium one of TV's must-see shows. But Glenn Close's well-publicized turn on FX's The Shield shall win this one.

Supporting Actor In A Drama - The guys of Lost were wonderful and I've always been a fan of Terry O'Quinn's ever since The Stepfather. Alan Alda might be the spoiler here, but I expect Shatner to take home his second Emmy here.

Supporting Actress In A Drama - CCH Pounder has been a film and television stalwart so she'll garner the gold for her role on The Shield. I have no pick in this category as I've not seen any of the shows these actresses are nominated for.

Directing For A Drama Series - C'mon, Quentin delivered a pulse-pounding two-part CSI season finale and we'd all like to see his bountiful energy on stage. The king of kinetic will walk away with this one.

Writing For A Drama Series - Lost's pilot did a masterful job laying out its premise. But Hugh Laurie took David Shore's words and delivered one of the very best performances I've ever seen, on television or film, in the closing minutes of the episode that's nominated, "Three Stories". He'll get it.

Miniseries - The 4400 was great but this will be a toss-up between HBO's Empire Falls and CBS's Elvis.

Made For Television Movie
- Ricky Gervais's genius finale to his genius series, The Office Special, will get Emmy gold tonight.

Directing For A TV Movie or Miniseries - Stephen Hopkins will reel in the award for bringing to life the world of one of the funniest men to ever live.

Writing For A TV Movie or Miniseries - Again, Ricky Gervais will (and should) win for writing some of the best television that has ever been seen.

Variety/Music/Comedy Series - The laser-like focus of the astute writers of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart will win for their dead-on accuracy and ability to skewer all of the pretensions of the politcs. This show has replaced America's late-night news for the better, and we all know it.

Directing For A Variety/Music/Comedy - The Daily Show

Reality/Competition Program - N/A. I don't watch these types of programs. I think The Apprentice will get this, although don't count out the lameness that is American Idol.

Actor In A TV Movie or Miniseries -
Kenneth Branaugh's role as FDR will bring him the accolades of the Academy.

Actress In A TV Movie or Miniseries - Halle Berry might add to her Oscar with a win here. But I think Cynthia Nixon will win for Warm Springs.

Supporting Actor In A TV Movie/Miniseries - Paul Newman will win for Empire Falls.

Supporting Actress In A TV Movie/Miniseries - Kathy Bates will win for Warm Springs.

Performance In Variety/Music/Comedy - Jon Stewart, again, will win for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.

Writing For A Variety/Music/Comedy
- The Daily Show with Jon Stewart will complete its domination with a win here, and it's justly deserved.

I'll have my post-Emmy thoughts tomorrow.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

stay tuned...

A review of this film is forthcoming. I also have The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, recently arrived from Netflix (today), to watch.

I must scrimp and save for Serenity on the 30th.

Plus TiVo has a million and one things for me. I watched the series premier of Bones last night, followed by House. Great television. I've also become addicted to Prison Break as well. The WB's Supernatural is currently housed on TiVo. FOX's Head Cases debuted tonight, and TiVo graciously snagged that for me as well. CBS's David S. Goyer-co-created sci-fi series Threshold debuts Friday at 9PM. So I plan to immerse myself in fall TV goodness. It's going to be crazy, with many a TiVo scheduling conflict.

The Emmys are this Sunday. I hope Hugh Laurie wins for House, Jason Bateman for Arrested Development, Arrested Development wins (although I think Desperate Housewives will take home Emmy gold; nothing wrong with that) and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart wins.

Friday, September 02, 2005


American Red Cross

Please give. Those poor souls affected by Hurricane Katrina need all the help this country can provide.

This piece from The L.A. Times brought tears to my eyes. It's about the Superdome and all the sheer terror that place has evoked as the situation there gets increasingly tense.

Daily Kos has all of the horrible details of those that are showing they have no soul in this wake of this awful catastrophe. I'm speaking of course of Dennis Hastert, Michael Chertoff and Condoleeza "Buying Designer Shoes Is More Important Than Citizens That Are Suffering" Rice. These people are truly evil.