Mr. Cellophane

In a location adjacent to a place in a city of some significance, what comes out of my head is plastered on the walls of this blog.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Seasonal rot.

I mentioned recently how I've fallen in love with the show "Malcolm in the Middle". Sadly, both Nick-at-Nite and FX are currently cycling through the first season. With a handful of exceptions (the episode "Stock Car Races", certain plots at the military school, Hal's 'birds and the bees' speech in "Cheerleader"), I'm disengaged with these episodes. Yet, paradoxically, this is the only season currently available on DVD (and double dumbass on you, 20th Century Fox! Here's an idea that'd be a stone-cold hoot for everyone: instead of spending valuable cash on something like Marmaduke, you could put together season sets of "Malcolm". This way, something of value gets put into the marketplace and you can look yourselves in the mirror without puking. Sounds like a win-win in my book.).

This kind of got me to thinking: why is it that some first seasons of TV shows are blah while others are near perfect? By definition, the first season is when the cast and crew are trying things out; seeing what works and what doesn't. In my experience, I've seen a lot of shows reach both ends of the spectrum, such as:

"I got it, I got it..."

Kim Possible: Seldom an unwatchable show, but before the forced shipping and ridiculous slang that would shame Diablo Cody, this show provided a strong mix of high school and adventure plotting. Not every episode hit the mark, but the home runs this show hit (far more than in any following season) were remarkable ("Sink or Swim", "Tick-Tick-Tick", "Low Budget", "Kimitation Nation", "Number One", "Attack of the Killer Bebes", "Mind Games", "Pain King vs. Cleopatra").

The Drew Carey Show: This show knew what it wanted to be right out the gate. The writing and rapport between the cast made this a fantastic show for its first few seasons.

The Fairly Oddparents: I don't think there's a soul that'd argue in favor of the later episodes. The first six are still hilarious and inventive, if cheapened by the current run.

"...I ain't got it."

The Kids in the Hall: Some fine sketches broken up by stretches of monotony. Put it like this: when I buy the seasons on DVD, I'm getting this one last.

Futurama: Though I like Billy West's Burgess Meredith impression for Farnsworth in these earlier episodes, I can't help but see the show struggling to find its footing.

The Angry Beavers: Perhaps I've said this too much, but I really believe the show went from fair to classic once the premise changed from 'ultra-smooth beaver and his dorky brother' to 'word-stretching beaver exasperated by the antics of his childlike brother'. The first season is built on the former, alas.

I just know that there are more shows, not just ones I've never seen, but, particularly, the ones I have.


Saturday, May 29, 2010

"And I told you to remind him!"*

Two straight obituary posts. That seems like a really bad omen, for some reason.

Unlike Gary Coleman, I knew that Dennis Hopper had been ill for a while, but, like a lot of deaths, this took me by surprise.

Also, it's somewhat astonishing how many iconic (if not well-known) movies he's been in: Rebel Without a Cause, Easy Rider, Apocalypse Now, Blue Velvet and Speed.

One could call this ad weirdly prescient, but why don't we call it 'hopeful'; for all we know, Heaven could look like this:

* - BTW, yes, that is a line from Super Mario Bros.. Not everyone hates that movie.


Friday, May 28, 2010

Gary Coleman (1968-2010)

Instead of saying something like 'But did he ever find out what Willis was talking 'bout?', I'm just gonna post a commercial I found:


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Random thoughts.

- Define irony: The Lorax, who speaks for the trees, appearing on a gift card for Borders. Audrey, you crazy Once-ler, what have you done?

- Remember last fall in my review of Christopher Young's score for Drag Me to Hell when I made that statement about disproportionate punishment? Given that it premieres on Cinemax tonight, I've thought of another layer to keep me from ever defending this movie: As I've worked in customer service for close to a decade, I've run across a number of customers who thought they were in the right, even though, nine times out of ten, they were dead wrong. The movie features a woman who, when you get right down to it, was simply doing her job. I don't think I could be held responsible for my actions if I was persecuted for doing my job.

- Went to the flea market for the first time in God knows how long. It was kind of nice feeling a sense of community and seeing all the vintage items available. However, being the finicky person I am, I couldn't bring myself to buy any of it.

- For some reason, I always get seduced by comic books with either limited runs or ones that come out haltingly/stop abruptly. As such, I think I could review some of them. I always say that, but I stumbled onto a new limited run comic that could use some coverage.

- This was the week of my vacation and nice as it was to get away from work, it was fairly uneventful. Not uneventful in the sense that I did nothing, but more in the sense that I did the same old crap I do during work weeks. Now that I have a license, I wanted to go on a day trip to Toronto. Maybe next time?


Friday, May 21, 2010

Why I haven't had a Twinkie in years.

Another Shrek movie, another go-round for "Shrek Twinkies". Just like regular Twinkies, but with nasty-looking green stuff* in lieu of the traditional cream filling.

At an Ain't It Cool News talkback, I read about how some guy's ex-girlfriend caught chlamydia from a Shrek Twinkie. Maybe he made it up, maybe not, but I just knew those things were untrustworthy...and thankfully, I'm not the only one.

Seriously, why do I have to ship away for Banana Twinkies instead of finding them at the store? Fucking weak.

* - I know it's the cream filling dyed green, but that doesn't make it look not-disgusting...and since this was posted, I've seen the traditional Twinkies on the shelves and not these ugly ones. Hmmmm....


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Tuesday, I was bored out of my mind.

Wednesday, I went to work and wanted to kill half of the people there.

Which is worse, having nothing to do or having something to do, but dealing with worthless retards?


Friday, May 07, 2010

Watching The Spirit. Just as unintentionally hilarious as it was when I saw it toward the end of 2008.

Seeing Iron Man 2 today, I got a giddy thrill during the donut shop scene: Silken Floss and The Octopus together again!


Sunday, May 02, 2010

Summer movie preview.


Iron Man 2 - Manlier and more ironic than before! Really, who's not going to be seeing this?

Babies - A documentary about the lives of newborns in different parts of the world. Going by the trailer, this could be really interesting or really...not.

Robin Hood - If there was an award for Most Dull Looking Summer the very least, let's hope that this Robin Hood can speak with an English accent. Also, I'm somewhat intrigued - nowhere near enough to see the film, even for free - by the casting of Scott Grimes (the kid from Critters and, currently, the voice of Steve on "American Dad") as Will Scarlett.

Letters to Juliet - Amanda Seyfried looks for love in Italy. Okay, between her magazine covers, her high-class hooker in Chloe and how awesome her legs look on the poster of this movie, I truly hope that whoever cast her as the mousy nerd in Jennifer's Body is peddling for change at this very second.

Just Wright - Queen Latifah as a physical therapist who falls for recovering basketballer Common. Looks sweeter (and less gimmicky) than the year's other romantic comedies. Could be worth a look.

Shrek Forever After - They say it's the final chapter. We'll see. New additions include the Black dude from Hot Tub Time Machine, a "Spongebob" writer, the co-proprietor of Hamm and Buble and Megan Fox?! Well, nobody's perfect.

MacGruber - Based on a Saturday Night Live sketch. Maybe, for the first time in 17 years (some people do like Coneheads), that sentence won't be another way of saying 'comedy poison'.

Prince of Persia: the Sands of Time - This latest Jerry Bruckheimer production is, apparently, based on a video game. Never played it (but then, the last game I played was "A Link to the Past"), but it looks fairly engaging.

Sex and the City 2 - The first film ran two and a half hours long. Maybe, they hired an editor this time out.


Killers - Katherine Heigl marries Ashton Kutcher, little dreaming that he's a assassin. Remember what I said about gimmicky rom-coms? Still, the trailer made me laugh.

Get Him to the Greek - A spin-off of Forgetting Sarah Marshall with Russell Brand's character or another of those inexplicably popular comedies of embarrassment with a ridiculously miscast Jonah Hill in the Ben Stiller role? Both, probably, but I'm leaning toward the latter.

Marmaduke - Hey, at least it's not a "Curtis" movie. Or a "Zits" movie. Or (God help us all) a "Close to Home" movie. Still, why is he talking?!

Splice - A pair of geneticists create a creature that turns homicidal. Isn't that always the way? Okay trailer, but I'm not very interested.

The A-Team* - All it took was seeing the first trailer on the big screen (twice) to get me excited. The second trailer (despite the whistling, which kinda took me out of it) looks even better.

The Karate Kid - If I understand correctly, Fresh Prince Jr. is studying kung fu, not karate. Still, the title might get people into theaters. Music by James Horner (no, I didn't see it coming, either).

Toy Story 3 - Not sure what to say here. The trailers look good and one should never bet against Pixar, but '3'?

Jonah Hex - Based on the comic book, featuring two fine actors (Josh Brolin and John Malkovich)...and Megan Fox? Again? I know guys like to do things for girls they get wet over, but whatever happened to standards?! Pity, 'cause the trailer looks like trashy fun (as one would expect from a Neveldine/Taylor script).

Grown Ups - Adam Sandler. Kevin James. Chris Rock. Rob Schneider. David Spade. With a cast like this, a plot summary seems superfluous, don't you think?

Knight and Day - Tom Cruise is an unusual person who may or may not be out of his mind. As for the movie...looks good. "If anyone follows us, I'll kill myself, then her" makes me smile every time I think about it.


The Twilight Saga: Eclipse - I won't even dignify this with a response.

The Last Airbender - Full disclosure: I was initially going to see this just to spite the whiner babies bitching about how the roles are being played by White people, while conveniently ignoring the fact that the voice cast of the cartoon was mostly made up of White people. Now, though, this looks genuinely good, and I'm not even a fan of the show. (I don't dislike it; I just never got around to it.)

Despicable Me - The early trailer with the retarded fat kid and the inflatable pyramid actually had me ashamed to be a 29 year old man who still likes cartoons...but the newest trailer makes this look entertaining, with a pretty nice tagline: "Just because he's a bad guy doesn't make him a bad guy." (Why didn't they push it like this from the first?)

Predators - A disparate group of characters (including Machete, The Pianist, Morpheus and Eric Forman) must fight for survival know, I'm at a loss as to what they'll be fighting. Maybe the film will give me a clearer answer. Fun (and funny) trailer.

The Sorcerer's Apprentice - Flashy fantasy-adventure tenuously based on the classic cartoon. Looks interesting and Nicolas Cage and Jay Baruchel have to be the oddest couple I've seen in some time.

Inception - At the moment, I know little about Christopher Nolan's follow-up to The Dark Knight except that the trailer looked interesting and there's a hell of a cast.

Salt - Is Angelina Jolie a Russian spy? Who knows, but a lot of shit's gonna get wrecked on the way to the answer, that's for sure.

Dinner for Schmucks - To get a promotion, up-and-comer Paul Rudd must indulge his boss's dinner, where they bring (and make fun of) losers and idiots. Enter the goofy Steve Carell. Looks funny, but I so wish they didn't use the legend 'From the director of Meet the Parents and Meet the Fockers'. I know Jay Roach did those movies, but it's like having sex with a hot girl and, out of the blue, she mentions your mother. Kinda sours the experience, you know?

Ramona and Beezus - Adaptation of the classic Beverly Cleary book. Looks charming enough for the target audience, but a bit too twee for me.

Cats and Dogs: the Revenge of Kitty Galore - I'll always remember the first movie for the time I suffered a heart attack (despite what you may think, it had nothing to do with the movie itself). It looks less ridiculous than the season's other talking animal movie, though who could be blamed for thinking that it would've gone direct-to-DVD?

Beastly - Another adaptation of "Beauty and the Beast", with the girl from High School Musical and one of the Olsen twins. Seriously, why did Disney push their 3D-augmented 1991 version back to next year?!


The Other Guys - ...or Cop Out: the Good Version (really, was Tracy Morgan's character supposed to be retarded in that movie?). Hilarious trailer.

Step Up 3-D - I read somewhere (concerning the new Clash of the Titans) that 3-D has gotten out of hand. Would that that person waited a few more months...

Eat Pray Love - Based on a best-selling book...starring Julia Roberts...that's about the extent of my knowledge about this, and maybe it's better that way.

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World - Despite the penance due from Michael Cera, this film looks like all kinds of awesome, and why shouldn't it, given the presence of Hot Fuzz/Shaun of the Dead director Edgar Wright?

The Expendables* - Stallone. Lundgren. Li. Statham. Rourke. Willis. Schwarzenegger. Need. I. Say. More?

Takers - Originally set to open in February and then May before landing here. That doesn't mean that anything's wrong with the film, does it? In any event, this caper thriller looks like trashy fun.

Nanny McPhee and the Big Bang - Follow-up to the underrated adaptation sees Emma Thompson returning to the titular role and bringing along Maggie Gyllenhaal and Maggie Smith. I'm sure they could've found roles for Maggie Grace and Maggie Q, as well.

The Switch - If the script review I read is anything to go by, this story of a woman (Jennifer Aniston) desperate for the perfect sperm sample and her platonic friend (Jason Bateman) looks to be a dud.

Lottery Ticket - Bow Wow's lottery ticket can lead to great things if he can hold on to it. Very amusing trailer with especially fine bits from a nearly unrecognizable Ice Cube and Mike Epps.

Piranha 3-D - I'm genuinely looking forward to this remake. I doubt that it will top the original in any way, but it could be fun. Also, here's hoping there's an actual story to go with the 3D gore (*coughTheFinalDestinationcough*).

Going the Distance - Real-life couple Drew Barrymore and Justin Long must deal with a long-distance relationship in this romantic comedy from the co-director of the underrated The Kid Stays in the Picture. Apparently, this film is rated R. A R-rated romantic comedy. Really, how many good ones have there been?

* - Between these projects and the underrated The Losers, this looks to be a fine year for action movies about groups of guys kicking ass and taking names...except, they've run out of names.


Saturday, May 01, 2010

Today, I missed out on the new issue of "Love and Capes" for Free Comic Book Day and work was the usual parade of mouth-breathers...but who has time to worry about that when you're cruising around town making the most of your just-arrived-in-the-mail(-yesterday) driver's license?

I'm sure that it was driving alone that made all the difference, compared to how tentative I was with passengers.