Monday, March 19, 2012

Boob Tube: The Walking Dead season 2 finale

Fucking WOW.
I think I have said that after every episode this season. Even with the first half of the season being heavy on talk and short on zombies, it was still just jaw dropping T.V.
Then shit got real when they came back to the second half of the season.

Spoilers will be below. Fair warning!

I haven't read the comic/graphic novel past vol. one "Days Gone By" but thanks to wikipedia I've briefly caught myself up on important plot points. Yes, they have switched some things up along the way. Otis not being killed so soon, Shane making it further into this plotline, Dale not getting his stomach ripped out this soon. This doesn't matter, it helps the T.V. adaptation be it's own monster.

Seeing Michonne show up at towards the end of this seasons finale to save Andrea who was stomping zombie skulls herself, was pretty rad.
 Being flanked by two armless zombies on chains and her sword was a fucking rad scene even though they didn't "show" her besides being a hooded shadow-y figure was still insane.

Laurie's reaction to finding out Rick killed Shane and then Carl putting down the reanimated Shane was priceless. Made me hate the hell out of her since she was the one who basically put the idea in Rick's head that Shane had to go. Not to mention the perfect expression on Rick's face when it dawns on him that Laurie had deeper feelings for Shane than he originally thought.
Rick's speech that "this is no longer a democracy" for those who still stick with the group next season was pitch perfect, seeing how his slice of life isn't exactly as he thought.
Ha, and I've discussed with friends how much Hershel didn't have to reload his shotgun. Pretty funny aside during the who farm invasion.
Infinite ammo code I suppose.

The opening teaser before the credits rolled with the helicopter flying overhead really left an avalanche of questions and that was like 45 seconds in give or take. That spurring on the herd of "walkers" that end up overrunning the farm was interesting, seeing them reacting to such a small bit of stimuli really made it extra scary. They still have some "human" abilities to understand what a helicopter flying by so quickly meant, to comprehend what they hear. How far they will travel for food, that there must be some sort of communication between them that so many followed the others.

Then there was the revelation of what Dr. Jenner told Rick at the CDC. That has always made the zombie apocalypse isn't exactly a disease or virus, EVERYONE eventually will become a walker. That is truly terrifying. There is no cure. That famous tagline from Dawn of the Dead "when there is no more room in hell, the dead will walk the earth" Chilling. It makes me so happy that it isn't some man made virus that caused this.

Now we have about 6 months to sit and stew over what happens in season 3. We know Michonne figures in, the last scene of the episode revealing the prison, which I'm guessing will loom big throughout the season.
I've heard that The Governor has been cast makes me wonder if they will shorten the prison storyline so they can get to the town or will he be a building block added to the prison storyline?
There will be some changes made of course to further separate themselves from the comics which is fine, I'm guessing some of the rape stuff that is suppose to be in the comics will be whitewashed in the show or not addressed at all. I've heard rumors that Michael Rooker will be returning next season. Will it be another hallucination of Daryl's or is he going to show up for real and we find out how he got out of Atlanta? I am so amped to find these things out. I have this sneaking suspicion that Merle led the walkers to the campsite in the first season resulting in the massive attack and exodus. Just my guess though.

OH one thing I have not addressed that wanted to was how blown away I have been with the "walker" special effects. I'm ecstatic to see that they have been using so much practical real world make up effects and been relatively light on CGI which I feel so many movies and to a lesser extent shows have relied on as a crutch in recent years. Good ol fashion Tom Savini-esque effects really put the meat in the show visually. I can't even fathom the budget they are allowed. Kudos for putting the resources behind the effects team.
It pays off in spades.
I think I'm done gushing for now. I believe I have covered most of the observations i came up with.
I now have to wait until Netflix Instant adds it so I can rewatch the entire season in two days or less.
As much as I love the summetime, I wanna skip it to get to October and start finding out what happens in the 3rd season. Maybe I'll get my hands on the graphic novels so I can catch up with it's storylines so I can anticipate this third installment later this year.
So fucking good.
Fucking WOW!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Projection Booth: Nightmare On Elm St. 2 real-time blogging

Real time commentary as I'm watching Nightmare On Elm St. 2 Freddy's Revenge ( the most unintentional gay horror movie of the 80's)

1. The sister is eating a cereal called Fu Man Chews where she gets claw fingernails.
2. The horrible grandma couch in the living room.
3. The generic Tiffany-esque female lead.
4. They offer archery in gym class for the girls while (macho) baseball for the guys in short shorts.
5. bare ass wrestling between to guys within the first 10 minutes
6.there is apparently "an S&M joint" somewhere in downtown Springwood
7. Jesse has a nurse's shirt for a night shirt and he wears high tops to come down for a midnight snack
8. Jesse screams like a woman.
9. Jesse has a pretty sweet swatch
10. Nobody in class including the teacher noticed when a clasmate snuck over and grabs the snake from his cage to put on Jesse with he is sleeping in class.
11. Jesse sure likes some pussy R&B music and this dance/unpacking sequence is very gay with his gripping the screwdriver at his crotch and the ass bumping his drawer closed.
12. Jesse has a game called "probe" in his closet
13. He has a sign on his door that says "No Outta Town Chicks"
14. The guy playing Jesse is very very effeminate.
15. The constant shots of him dripping with sweat in bed.
16. The top of the basement stairs has a page ripped out of a magazine that looks like it might be Debbie Gibson.
17. The parents haven't bothered to see why the house is so hot until they let it get to 97 degrees. Wouldn't you think at maybe 80 to turn down the thermostat?
18. Heat makes parakeets go homicidal as well as spontaneously combust
19. the dad thinks that cheap bird feed will make them explode.
20. Zach called. Probably code for meet Slater and Screech at the S&M Bar and bring an umbrella
21. It's always a good idea to wander out in a downpour where you'll find your coach at a sleazy punk/leather bar.
22. When in doubt ask for "beer" and you'll get a highball glass as well.
23. Your coach will make you run laps when he sees you in public before making you shower while he gets out his whips and leather vest
24.The coach doesn't think its terribly odd that balls are flying at him
25.another bare ass man this time getting whipped, yup definitely not homoerotic
26. The dad thinks his son is on drugs when he is found by the cops in the rain wandering around naked.
27. The kid needs a "meth-a-don" clinic
28. more sweaty naked Jesse
29. C'mon Cheryl how did you think we got such a good deal on this house? Boom... the toaster starts on fire while unplugged
30. Letting you girl-friend take you to an abandoned powerplant that the guy you are dreaming about use to kill kids at is a great idea.
31.that blue oversized sweater is so stylish with its single button unbuttoned.
32. Maybe if Lisa wasn't wearing an ugly smock for shirt Jesse might be able to fight his homo urges and try to "make himself" straight.
33. Its not creepy at all that you are standing over your pre-teen sister all sweaty
34. big bags under your eyes is considered "looking better" to mom
35. The guy who bullies Jesse also seems to be his friend.
36. Bully/friend Grady looks rad in white khakis
37. Girl-friend's dad doesn't like splashing while he is grilling up wieners for the teenagers
38.Girl can't take a hint that Jesse likes boys
39. Slow reach in only to kiss his cheek. Awkward makeout sesh while the parents get drunk on their tacky bedroom set.
40. lights out means party, even if the parents aren't even asleep.
41. Jesse is a motorboatin' sonofabitch
42. Jesse's tongue looks like a black man's cock.
43. He runs away and into his bully/friend's bedroom while he was sleeping.
44. "There is something inside of me" "I'm scared, something is trying to get into my body"- classic dialogue
45. cue more homoerotic dialogue
46. There is never anything good on when I have to watch my crazy friend sleep
47.great special effects work. Like American Werewolf in London type transformation
48. Best chest bursting scene since Alien
49. The classic movie command "This is your father, open the door" never works
50. The cops show up really quickly.
51. Coca Cola fueled makeout poolside
52. Lisa isn't creeped out that the guy she likes comes barging in all bloody confessing murder. "But I can change him, he's different when it's just the two of us"
53. Ok who put the firecrackers in the hotdogs?
54. Teenage heat is makin me crazy
55. Yes, throw a lace cloth at Freddy. That'll stop him.
56. Freddy's in the mood for rape
57. Yum,  nothing says a party like strawberry shortcake
58. That is the worst stabbing attempt in history
59. Freddy.... or I guess nothing? just smashed through the french doors
60. damn, Freddy is trashing our pool furniture.
61. Awesome, this dude thinks he can play hostage negotiator with Freddy Krueger " Help yourself Fucker!"
62. Shotgunnin the Bogeyman, if only dad could aim.
63. Fire walk with me
64.Smart Lisa,you were nearly killed so drive tot he place wher Freddy raped and murdered the little kids.
65. "How are we gonna make it scary at the powerplant?" "I know, dogs with weird fat kid masks on"
66. Hey steaming pipes, lets touch it
67. creepy rat, no problem, creepy cat, wait creepy cat? Run away.
68. Jesse doesn't like the pussy, that's ok more for Freddy.
69. Gay boy kryponite is apparently when his fag-hag says "I Love You"
70. Love conquers all, even the bogeyman.
71. If Freddy was burned once wouldn't he almost be immune to being burned again?
72. Eww its smells like burnt dog hair, wait, its just Jesse.
73. Looks like Jesse went "across the street" not "down the road"
74. Yes Jesse, Lisa would not like you to talk about your homo past. Pretend to like the vag, atleast until the end of high school.
75. I didn't know Springwood IL was near a desert, hmmm guess I've never been in south Illinois

And that concludes my real time viewing of Nightmare on Elm St. 2 Freddy's Dead. 

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Projection Booth: An Open Letter To Bill Murray

Mr. Murray,
I am writing on behalf of most likely every "Ghostbusters" fan, that holds out hope of a third film.
We would be very pleased if you agreed to appear in the fabled movie. Actually we would be ecstatic, over the moon happy to if you were to star in it. I demand that you star in it.
I'm a huge fan of your work personally from "Stripes" to "Caddyshack" and all the way up to "Life Aquatic" and "Broken Flowers". I love your style of humor. The way you fully flesh out the characters you portray is a joy to watch infinitely entertaining. But one role stands out above the rest and that would be Dr. Peter Venkman.

I grew up watching "Ghostbusters" since I was 5 years old, I wanted to be a ghostbuster when I grew up. It tops my list of not only favorite comedy but favorite movie, period.
I watch it on average of every two months give or take. It only gets better with each viewing. I watch it when I'm sick, when it's rainy out, with friends, sometimes just to quote along with the movie. I had it on VHS then in high school got it on DVD and then on Blu-Ray. I'm a massive fan. I loved the video game, played it over and over to hear your voice work.
Your portrayal of Dr. Pete Venkman is stunning. The subtle deadpanned delivery is so great. The way you brought Dr. Venkman to life as a sarcastic cocky ghost catcher and made him a classic memorable character is awesome. I know that the quotability from the movie was the writing but you were the one who made him worth quoting.
When I was growing up I wanted to be funny and self-assured like Pete.
Screw Han Solo, Pete Venkman was the coolest character from a movie that I wanted to be like. "Ghostbusters" is a modern day masterpiece of a movie.

"Ghostbusters 2" was somewhat of a letdown but thats because the bar was so high from the first one, which a third film can only go up from second. I've heard that "Ghostbusters 2"'s script was originally very different from the version we got but use that experience to guide the second sequel into better territory story-wise.
Sure "Ghostbusters 2" suffered from a bit of a weak story but it was you as Dr. Venkman that kept it afloat. I always saw the first film it was kind of a horror movie with comedic elements and the second was a comedy with some supernatural elements and I think thats where it suffered. The first film was kind of scary or creepy might be a better word but the second one was lacking that and I think that the other characters were watered down versions of themselves in "2" except for how you played Venkman. You kept it true to the spirit of what you did in the first film and it was made the movie more watchable. I would have liked the script to be more the same as the first in tone but sometimes sequels have that problem. The best part of the movie was Dr. Venkman even with the souped up love-y storyline between Dana and Pete which kinda dragged the second one down. I recognize that the "what-could-have-beens" potential with the second one probably makes you not want to appear in the potential third film but it NEEDS YOU.
I like Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis and Ernie Hudson's roles in the movies but without you as Pete Venkman a third movie would be shit. I haven't read the script for it but I'm sure you have and obviously you didn't enjoy it or find it compelling. Even if it isn't what you'd hope it would be but help them get it to a worthy script if need be. I do not want them to recast the role or even write in some lame reason for your character not to be in the movie.

I've heard you said something to the effect that "nobody wants to pay to see a couple of old men chasing ghosts" but I and I bet a ton of fans would disagree. You are what makes "Ghostbusters" so cool. Sure the ghosts are a big attraction but you make it worth watching. It would be a disaster if you weren't in a third movie. I'd love to see you throughout the entire movie but even if you were in just part of the movie it would be miles better than if you weren't in it at all. It would be a shit-tastic disaster if they recast Dr. Venkman.
I know you don't need to do this movie, you've got a great life right now but we as fans need you to do this movie. I've always wanted to see more of your version of Dr. Venkman. Please don't let the opportunity to close out the story on a high note as Ghostbusters 2 had too much of a cheesy ending. Just because the characters are older doesn't mean that they can't be effective and entertaining.

I really really hope you finally decide to appear in "Ghostbusters 3". I would be heartbroken if we didn't get a third movie or even worse of you are replaced. I understand the many reasons you may have for not doing a third film but don't let them get in the way of helping find closure with these characters, especially Dr. Venkman. You probably have a lot of leverage to get the script the way you would like to see it.  If you were soured on another sequel because of what part 2 started as and ended as, just think of the fans who would be so happy to see you in the brown jumpsuit one more time.

A pretty damn big fan

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Spin The Black Circle: You Can Shove Your Concept Albums...

I really like that “Chris Gaines” album- Said by no one EVER

I hate concept albums/rock operas. More or less detest them save for a infinitesimal few records.
Which also is not to say that I don't love songs from these type of records, I just hate the bloated ideas and pedestrian indulgences that come from them. These usually are spawned out of a musician becoming an "artist". 
As Gene Simmons of Kiss once said, "You're an artist? Then paint my house bitch" 

Be it Meatloaf's "Bat Out Of Hell", The Who's "Tommy", Coheed and Cambria's entire catalog or Marilyn Manson's... well anything they have released aside from "Smells Like Children", listening to these concept albums are asinine and most often boring. 
I realized how much I despise this type of musical endeavor from being subjected to Meatloaf's aforementioned album from 1977 while at work.
It's a overblown story having something to do with teenagers fucking in a car and getting married. All I hear when that plays is like 9 minutes of Meatloaf simply singing "like a bat outta heeeeeellllllllll!!" over and over.
 Fucking bleh!
"Tommy" from The Who, being the story of a blind, deaf, and mute pinball genius( pinball seriously?) who becomes a latter day jesus which to me proves that people are dumb and put faith in the stupidest things. And if I remember correctly there is also an insinuation of a molesting uncle in there somewhere too.(though maybe I'm still thinking about some Marilyn Manson song but i digress) 
The only song that is halfway memorable is "Pinball Wizard" otherwise I couldn't tell you how a single song goes from that album. 
I get too exhausted trying to follow the narrative.
Oh, while mentioning "Tommy" I have to throw out there Green Day's "American Idiot" which if Billie Joe Armstrong is really honest, is nearly an exact rip-off of "Tommy". And like "Tommy" there is only one memorable song so named after the album from which it is spawned. 

When I was 15 I was dumb enough to think that Marilyn Manson's "Antichrist Superstar" was some work of genius. FALSE!
As the years have progressed I've come to understand that it is some lame attempt to channel Alice Cooper, the Devil and the Christian view of the apocalypse all flattened together to make a fruit roll up of a shock rock story of again some other type of cult-ish figure. 
I dunno what it is with all these band's obsession with messiah figures. I'll let someone else psychoanalyze, I just wanna spew vitriol that they do. 
Oh another shit-tastic concept album is Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and talk about over hyped. Absolutely wretched to endure.
Oh fuck, that Angels and Airwaves band, pure musical masturbation as so many concept albums are.
Last one I will pick on is Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”. They reason it is so lauded I think is because when people are in high school and start to experiment with drugs they are told from older kids how amazing it is. It isn’t. Its at best a record with one great song and then you have to listen to the rest and to make matters worse, which seems somewhat common with concept albums, it is a two disc or multiple vinyl record. So much unnecessary bravado that it was spewed past just one disc.

I'm sure this sounds like an Ipod generation pissing and moaning about not wanting to listen to an entire album. Perhaps a child of singles who are too hyper-active that can’t understand the value of “art form” of an extended story. Very much not the case, I actually enjoy listening to an LP from beginning to end. I absolutely enjoy it when a record has a cohesive flow to it. 
Starts up and builds then cools it down before bringing back to a great ending. A sonic rollercoaster if you will. That’s a great thing and so many bands can accomplish just that without having to stoop to concept albums. Thematic elements can make a record a classic but without stroking the musicians ego to the point of decadence.

For instance, AC/DC's "Back in Black" is basically entirely about getting pussy but it isn't a stupid story about getting laid. Similar themes yet not necessarily having to listen to the entire album to understand idea of chasing tail. 
Also the Replacements made great music which could be said that a fair amount of the songs have similar themes but they never indulged in musical masturbation. Even though Paul Westerberg is an extremely song writer he never let his ego outweigh what the band was about.

What bugs me the most is when a band mistakes a common thread linking the songs with having to make some epic statement. If you want to tell a story write a damn book or a fucking screen play, then maybe I'll care because that way they have editors that can give criticisms before it makes it to print. Concept albums strike me as a songwriter convincing him or herself that their grandiose ideas are good. Almost always they aren't. 

There are a few of these type of musical endeavor that I do enjoy, Weezer’s “Pinkerton” is one, can be enjoyed on a level of a great emo/rock record but then you can see the songs together as a updated version of M. Butterfly. I do not remember the band making a big deal of this, they just kind of let the audience figure it out for themselves.
I dig “Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars” which is one of the most famous concept albums and has probably inspired tons of terrible attempts of bands creating their own “Ziggy Stardust”. I really like this album because nearly every song on the album can be heard singularly and not get lost in in the overall message of the album. Perfect job of straddling  that line of intent without being bastardizing the experience.

Here are a just couple others that I can exempt from my hatred:

Modest Mouse “We Were Dead Before The Ship Even Sank”
The Lawrence Arms- “The Greatest Story Ever Told”
Arcade Fire “ The Suburbs”

Lastly I want to re-iterate that hating a concept album does not mean that I don’t like songs off of them, just that the idea on a whole fucking blows.
I’m not gonna for shame anyone who enjoys these as god  knows they have their reasons but I just find those records to be one or two decent to great songs and the rest is just wasting time and space.
Oh and I’m also not saying in the least that albums without concepts behind them aren’t also completely fucking dreadful. Those horrible ear rapes are another rant altogether.