Friday, February 13, 2004

IF THEY MADE A CARTOON OF YOU, I'D WATCH IT: Last minute strategies for Valentine's Day victory! Not because I care, but because they're of the smart, non-standard semi-cynical and mostly-home-made variety.

Download the jpgs, print and present! Sure to make big bonus points with your sweetie(s). No time to go indy like a Hallmark holiday!

Via Wil, via oneyedcat. (Not that we're content to be hopelessly derivative.)
PATHETIC EARTHLINGS have been picking up mad slack on the pop-culture front this week, what with bugs bunny, Mel-e Mel and the Vatican Two-step, NPR, copyright infringement, media morals and sports. Hit the man up, and read on back through the last 48hrs. Yummers.

Thursday, February 12, 2004

BEDEBEDEBEDE: Kind of disappointing, but it was stumped when I picked Dr. Theopolis. Maybe Buck Rogers didn't count as a sit com?

Still a decent diversion.

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

NO EXPLANATION. NO APOLOGY. Just trust that this link to a post on The Liberty & Power Group Blog is intended for entertainment purposes . . . or mostly for entertainment purposes.

Of course, it is also a terrifying cautionary tale about what you risk missing if you don't watch enough C-Span.

Monday, February 9, 2004

THREE GRAMMIES, NO WHAMMIES, AND SOME FRANK TALK ABOUT INNOVATION AND TRUE CREATIVITY: Unfortunately for me, it's far far far too late to get on the Outkast bandwagon, but there's a great pre-grammy article on CNN about their career and creative priorities. The capper, for an aspiring curmudgeon like me? Bingo:

Andre admits that rap doesn't excite him any more. He can't remember the last time he bought a rap album, and laments the fact that hip-hop is more about partying in clubs that rapping these days.

He allows that his age (Andre and Big Boi are both 29) might be influencing his thinking.

"It doesn't feel the same to me like when I was in high school, when Tribe Called Quest was out, and NWA," Andre said. "I can't really feel what a lot of rappers are talking about, and maybe it's because I'm not in the clubs. When I listen to rap music now, it seems like a lot of people don't have nothin' to say ... It's pretty much the same story we've been hearing -- 'From the ghetto, I'm rapping now, I made it big.' "

When I say that, I'm an illegitimate, comically mainstream, uncomfortably-comfortably-compensated white-bread player-hater. When the guys in Outkast say it. . . well, they won three Grammies yesterday. And I'm not saying there isn't good stuff out there. I'm just saying, is all.
NEXT TIME, PEOPLE, WARN ME: Saw Jim Sheridan's much-admired In America yesterday.

Now, the acting is all solid, especially the two real-life sisters playing sisters Christy and Ariel, and Samantha Morton's toughness really comes through.

But the story, my gosh! It doesn't get moving until the street carnival scene, and that works really well, but then, next thing you know, Djimon Hounsou -- Hollywood's Favorite Magical Negro -- shows up, and it's all malarkey from there on out. You just sit around waiting for the scene where Djimon's going to teach the family how to play golf, help them communicate with their dead son, shout "show me the money!", or, if necessary (and this is more of a Michael Clarke Duncan job), die so that others might live and be redeemed.

It's emotional at the end, but you'll hate yourself for reacting to it. Recommended avoid, especially when there's so many better options out there.

Sunday, February 8, 2004

ONE TWO THREE GO! Credit where credit is due: tonight's Grammy Awards was, perhaps, the most start-to-finish entertaining awards telecast I've ever seen.

I'm serious.

Taking its cue from what worked last year, this show was heavy on performances, light on actual awards-giving. So while I'm sure I could whine about the awarding of Record of the Year (i.e., best single) to Coldplay's "Clocks" ahead of "Hey Ya" and "Crazy In Love", there was so much good stuff going on that it didn't matter.

Where to begin? The very beginning is a very good place to start, with a young-as-always Prince leading Ms. Knowles through a medley of hits. If that's what Prince is going to be like in five years when he starts playing Vegas, I'll send in my $125 right now. And it kept getting better: Alicia Keys' emotional rendition of Burt Bacharach's "A House Is Not A Home" in tribute to Luther Vandross; the Black Eyed Peas' energetic antiwar hit "Where's The Love"; a gloriously messy and exuberant funk segment with Big Boi, Earth Wind & Fire (featuring Verdine "Sexual Chocolate!" White on bass), Robert Randolph and P-Funk, the Mothership; and, finally, Andre 3000 bringing the house down with a wild, party-up, get-down, yeah-Native-Americans-are-going-to-be-pissed-but-it-was-fun performance of "Hey Ya", which was, like, wow. Hip hop can work live, and Jen immediately replayed it on the TiVo. It was that good.

(Note to self: never watch an awards show without TiVo. Start a half-hour late, skip the commercials, skip boring speeches and unnecessary performances, end on time.)

This was great television, a fitting tribute to a great year in pop music. So if you want to mock Evanesence for joining Lauryn Hill, Paula Cole, Hootie and the Blowfish, Arrested Development, Marc Cohn and Jody Watley as Best New Artist winners, or anything else about the awards, well, you do it in the comments. I'm still buzzed from a good show.