Prediction: Eric Schwartz will be invited to perform on the American Idol finale.
Is this more or less annoying than the real Sunjaya? I can't decide. Part of me thinks it's hilarious and part of me just wants to poke my eardrums out with a pen after listening. Hmm, I guess that means there's really not much difference between this guy and the real thing.
Saturday, March 31, 2007
Prediction: Eric Schwartz will be invited to perform on the American Idol finale.
Friday, March 30, 2007
Oh, look! My old, intended-to-be-recurring topic has finally recurred! Yeah, I drop the ball a lot, but eventually I pick it up. And hey, "Eye Boogers" is still around. Just don't ask me what happened to "Other Guy of the Month."
Anyway, this is just a list of songs that I'm really digging right now for one reason or another. The links will either take you to a video or a MySpace page, depending on what's available for each song.
1. "Stuck in a Windup," Lord Large - I discovered Lord Large after the Glenn Tilbrook show in December. Stephen Large was the keyboardist for Glenn's band, The Fluffers, and, before that, Electric Soft Parade. He's teamed up with producer Andrew Jones and enlisted the help of great vocalists like Tilbrook, Andrea Britton and Clem Curtis of The Foundations, to create a funky, soulful, Motown-throwback kind of record. This song (with Curtis on lead vocals) is currently my profile song on MySpace and I can't stop singing it. Why would I want to?
2. "Build Me Up Buttercup," The Foundations - Discovering that Clem Curtis sang the above song made me remember how much I always loved this gem. (Note: Curtis had already left the band prior to its recording, so lead vocals were provided by his replacement, Colin Young.) Also, I had to explain the meaning of the lyrics to two different people last week. Odd.
3. "By The Light of the Cash Machine," Glenn Tilbrook - Hey, we're on a roll here! This is a song that Glenn released as a B-side to "Parallel World," the first single from his 2000 solo debut. I always heard fans talking about this song, but I had never heard it (other than an acoustic version on his tour documentary, One For the Road) until recently, when he finally put it up on his MySpace page! It's such a cute song...very early-Beatlesque. It was co-written with Ron Sexsmith, whose songs are either hit or miss with me. This one's a hit.
4. "Nausea," Beck - I've actually had this song in my head since I saw Beck perform it on Saturday Night Live a few months ago, with that fantastic puppet show. With a name like Beck, it goes without saying that he's cool.
5. "In The Beginning," The Stills - I'd only heard one other Stills song ("Still in Love Song") before sitting down to listen to their new CD, Without Feathers. It's my roommate's CD, and I often find some of the stuff he likes to be that whiny, coffeehouse crap, but it ended up being pretty good. This is my current favorite from the record. Bonus: I see now, watching the video, that the singer has a lovely head of hair. I wasn't even looking for it, but that piece of eye candy fell right into my lap. I love when that happens.
6. "Love Today," Mika - Yes, it's that song from the new Verizon RAZR commercial with all the yee-da-dee-dum-dee-da's in it. It's just such a catchy, fun song that I had to download it from iTunes after seeing that commercial for the umpteenth time. If it doesn't make you at least tap your foot, check your pulse. Oh, and make sure you check out the video! Mika looks like Robbie Benson, circa 1979.
7. "When We Were Younger," Charlie Sexton and Shannon McNally - This is from a short EP these two recorded after going on tour together. It's all very mellow stuff, and this is probably the most uptempo song on it. It's got a nice groove, and I'm sort of getting over my grudge against Charlie Sexton by this point. (Sorry, I could only find a live version of the song online.)
8. "Long Trip Alone," Dierks Bentley - I'm sure there was just a collective groan from all the country haters out there. I don't care. This is a very good song. My attachment to it has nothing to do with Dierks's recent performance on The Tonight Show, or that he looked super-fine. No, no...this is about the music, people. Honestly, I do like the song. But it's so much better when paired with the video. I always liked Dierks's messy, curly hair and was a little shocked to see his newly-shorn look but, good gravy, does he look good! He even gets his head buzzed in this video. At first it's a little sad to watch all those lovely locks go, but the end result is quite drool-inducing.
9. "Satisfaction Guaranteed," The Firm - I wanted to post this as my "Forgotten Classic Video" last week, but the only file available on YouTube had a 5 minute interview segment tacked on to the beginning of it. The vid is over at iFilm, but I guess they don't allow embedding. I had been thinking of this song because I remembered that I neglected to recommend it to Jef for his "in the mood" CD. It's always worked for me! Oh, that Paul Rodgers. Not exactly a stud, but if he was singing to me, I'm sure I'd jump on him...in spite of that insane mass of chest hair.
10. "Night Shark," Children of the Unicorn - I found this band on MySpace and can't stop playing this song, as well as the other highlight, "Icicle Dagger." If you haven't figured it out by the titles, this is a metal band. Sort of. They seem to effortlessly blend musical satire with sincerity, and irony with a true love and understanding of metal. Whether it's supposed to be taken seriously or as a joke, this '80s kid thinks it's fabulous. I think the singer is the same guy who sings for Hair Supply, the heavy metal tribute to Air Supply. Obviously, he's my new hero.
I'd escaped being "tagged" for a long time, but now I've gotten hit with two in as many days. This time around, Bond has plopped the Meme with No Name in my lap. And away we go...
LIST FOUR SENTENCES YOU'VE NEVER SAID BEFORE:
1) I cried when "Full House" went off the air.
2) I can't wait to see the new Heather Graham movie.
3) Why can't I meet a guy like K-Fed?
4) Grease 2 was so much better than the original Grease. (It pains me to even say that in jest.)
LIST ANY NUMBER OF SONG TITLES THAT DESCRIBE HOW YOU'VE FELT THIS WEEK:
1) Every Day is a Winding Road, Sheryl Crow - And every day I miss my car!
2) I Wanna Be Adored, Stone Roses - Who doesn't?
3) It's Hard to Be a Saint in the City, Bruce Springsteen - I didn't know what he meant until I moved to New York.
4) Dizzy, Tommy Roe - I just haven't had much sleep lately!
IMAGINE YOU'RE HAVING THE IDEAL PERFECT DAY. WHAT FOUR THINGS WOULD YOU BE DOING?
1) Sleeping in late.
2) Driving to the beach with the windows down and the radio up.
3) Frolicking on the beach with a Jeremy Sisto lookalike. (I'm assuming the real one wouldn't be available.)
4) Completely vegging out, sipping on fruity drinks and watching the sunset.
(No one ever accused me of being high maintenance.)
MAKE UP FIVE CREATIVE NAMES FOR A NEW ROCK BAND:
1) Violent Jackass (There's actually a story behind this.)
2) The Misguided Russians (There's a story for this, too!)
5) Zoot Suit Alors
CONGRATULATIONS! YOU GET TO GO BACK IN TIME AND ENSURE THAT THREE SONGS WERE NEVER WRITTEN, THUS SPARING HUMANITY FROM EVER HAVING TO HEAR THEM. WHAT THREE SONGS WOULD GET THE AXE?
1) Relax, Frankie Goes to Hollywood
2) Mambo No. 5, Lou Bega
3) In 'Da Club, 50 Cent
(I only get to save humanity from three?? So unfair.)
That's all, folks. Anyone can do this meme if they want, but I'm not going to tag anyone. See how nice I am? I told you in the last meme that I was a softie.
Thursday, March 29, 2007
I thought I was out, but they keep pulling me back in!
Yep, I just got "tagged" by one of my new blogfriends, Deadspot. I don't normally look forward to these memes, but it's nice to have something to divert my mind away from constant thoughts of Sunjaya.
I usually try to tailor these memes to the pop culture format, but these questions really aren't allowing that. Oh hell, I guess I'll have to get personal.
A - Available or Single – Don't these mean the same thing? If they don't, they should. I'm both.
B- Best Friend – Angela.
C- Cake or Pie – It depends. I really only like apple pie, but I really like it. With cake, it all hinges on the icing. Butter cream is the shiznit, but sometimes too much icing makes me sick. So I prefer angel food cake (no icing), ice cream cake and/or cheesecake.
D – Drink of Choice – Water or iced tea. I need to drink more of the former and less of the latter.
E- Essential Item – Well, it was my car but that's gone. So, I guess my CD player. I still don't have an iPod.
F- Favourite Colour – Purple. Me and Prince.
G- Gummi Bears or Worms – Eww, neither. I hate "gummi" anything.
H- Hometown – Pittsburgh, PA. I miss it.
I- Indulgence – Milkshakes. Supposedly, they bring all the boys to the yard....but I don't have a yard, or any boys for that matter. (See A.)
J- January or February – I have to go with February, just because my B-day is in it. More importantly, John Travolta's birthday is that month.
K- Kids – Some day. Maybe. I might need to start freezing my eggs now.
L- Life is incomplete without – Music. The good kind. Not the way Sunjaya does it. (Looks like someone's replaced K-Fed as "bad obsession of the month.")
M- Marriage Date – Hopefully before I have an answer to K.
N- Number of Siblings? – Four. Three brothers, one sister, all much older than me. I was a little slip-up.
O- Oranges or Apples? – I love oranges so much, but they always give me those ulcers on my tongue, which I hate. Apples are great, but I can never seem to finish a whole one. Hmm, perhaps I'll just drink orange juice and eat applesauce. Whoever had the idea for applesauce was a genius.
P- Phobias/Fears – Death, I suppose. And I'm really, freakishly afraid of nail guns and even staple guns. Maybe because I'm afraid they could inadvertantly cause fear #1 to occur.
Q- Favourite Quote – Right now? I'll go with, “In three words I can sum up everything I've learned in life: It goes on." - Robert Frost
R- Reasons to smile – Good music, good food, good friends.
S- Season – I like Spring and Fall. Not a fan of extremes.
T- Tag 3 People – Arrrgh, I hate doing this! Uh, Jef, Travis and Writeprocrastinator...because he's Mr. Touchy.
U- Unknown Fact About Me – I'm actually kind of a softie. (Shhhh!)
V- Vegetable You Hate – Most of them! I'm like a 5 year old when it comes to veggies. But the worst are mushrooms. Pickles are vegetables, right? I hate those too.
W- Worst Habit – I have no conception of time, so I'm late for everything.
X- X-rays You've Had – Many of my mouth and, I don't know. I'm sure I've had at least one or two on other body parts when I was younger.
Y- Your Favourite Foods – Meat and potatoes, baby.
Z- Zodiac – Pisces.
I didn't watch the results show, so I have no pithy comments about Gwen Stefani or the newest soul-sucking Idol Ford/Coke commercial. When I got home last night and checked the news, it was no surprise to find that AI said "bye-bye" to Chris Sligh.
It's at least good to know that I'm back on a semi-roll, as far as picking the cast-offs and bottom three. I predicted that Sligh, Haley and the retarded rooster would all be in the bottom, with Sligh getting the axe. Curly did, in fact, get bounced, while Sunjaya, once again, escaped elimination. Phil Stacey was the third on the chopping block, meaning that Sunjaya, once again, wasn't even in the danger zone.
I have a new theory. This season of American Idol is actually a psychological experiment conceived by an evil cabal of reality TV writers and producers to see just how much we, the audience, can take. Really, every week that Sunjaya is proclaimed "safe," I feel like I'm in my own Twilight Zone episode. I'm waiting for some old-timey actor to run onstage and start yelling, "What is this? Some kind of gag or something?" That's exactly what Sunjaya's presence is turning the show into...a big joke.
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
This week's theme on AI is a rather random one: Gwen Stefani songs. Or No Doubt songs. Oh, or just songs that Gwen Stefani likes. Is this the best idea the producers could come up with? I'm anticipating that the theme for the Top 5 will be "Songs written by guys named Bob, Bill, Joe or Clem." Can't wait!
Kicking things off tonight is LaKisha Jones with her version of Donna Summer's "Last Dance." LaKisha is wearing her ass-kickin' boots and making everyone miss disco. All the judges like seeing her vivacious side and give her good marks across the board.
Next, Chris Sligh gives The Police's "Every Little Thing She Does is Magic" a shot. In rehearsals, Gwen mentioned that Chris has a habit of getting ahead of the music, which has been his problem throughout the competition. He doesn't rise above it for his performance and ends up all over the place. I normally like Chris, but he's not doing this song justice and he just looks bored. The judges all tell Chris to give them a call when he finds the beat.
Since I haven't really been a fan of Gina Glocksen's, I'm not expecting to like her rendition of The Pretenders' "I'll Stand By You," but she really knocks it out of the park. This is the best I've heard her and this performance is going to be hard to beat tonight...even for Madame Doolittle. Again, all the judges agree that this was Gina's best. Why is everyone getting along so well tonight? I guess Randy and Simon finally caved and started taking whatever Paula's on.
So, hmmm....how to follow up Gina's lovely performance...
I know! How about setting music back a few years, courtesy of Sunjaya Malakar and Haley Scarnato? Ryan tells us they're up next and...oh Good Lord, Sunjaya has some sort of girly-mohawk thing going on. Has AI suddenly become a sitcom? After a quick shot of Sunjaya's bad hair day, Seacrest gives the camera his best zoinks-stare, a la Jim from The Office.
Now I'm getting a better look at Sunjaya's head and...well, what should we call this look? The retarded rooster? It's obvious that the evil little marionette realizes that gimmicks are his only hope for staying in this game. Sunjaya announces that he's going to sing No Doubt's "Bathwater," which prompts a smirk/eye roll/shrug combo from Ms. Stefani. Well, at least she doesn't have to worry about him singing it badly, because he's not really singing at all. He's lumbering through this song with all the passion of someone reading an eye chart. Oh, hey look! It's Fonzie! On waterskis! Yes kids, I think AI jumped the shark right this instant. It's just so pathetic that Sunjaya knows that he could come out, flash all his 4,000 teeth, hum a few bars of something and literally take a dump onstage (he's been doing that, figuratively, so why not), and he'd probably still be here next week. The judges are all laughing, Simon has just given up, the audience is in disbelief, and even Ryan, who is usually very supportive of all the contestants, is ready to kick this kid in the ass. Now would be the time for the producers to finally examine the flaws of the voting system and - here's a crazy idea - stop letting talentless jackasses get through to the final group. If it's really a singing competition, they need to stop worrying about making "good TV" and give us some good vocalists.
Churning through Sunjaya's wake, Haley is warbling Cyndi Lauper's "True Colors" like she's hoping to just walk away with the Miss Congeniality crown. Ho-hum. Everyone tells her, again, how pretty she is. Oh, I'm so glad. I don't think she knew.
Phil Stacey takes on the second Police song of the night with "Every Breath You Take." Every time I hear anyone but Sting do this, it just sounds like bland, AC fare...which is the direction this cover is heading. It's definitely not bad, just a bit humdrum. Phil definitely has a nice voice though, and I'm so glad he's cooling it with the yelling tonight. The judges all say it's good. I can't take all this harmony from the judges. I'm waiting for them to all join hands and sing "Kumbaya."
Guess what? Melinda Doolittle was great! Yeah, yeah, yeah. Sorry, folks, I'm just so bored all of a sudden. All that shark jumping took a lot out of me. Let's see, what else can I say about Melinda? I'll say this - her technique is kind of overpowering this song tonight. She's doing "Heaven Knows," another Donna Summer song, so I think she should be having a little more fun than she is. Don't get me wrong...it's good, but I think LaKisha captured the Disco Diva attitude much better. But, whatever. Melinda could sing the phone book and still bring down the house. Big surprise - everyone's in agreement.
Blake Lewis is lulling me to sleep with his version of The Cure's "Love Song." Well, this sucks because I've really liked Blake lately and I was looking forward to him doing something funky tonight like "Hella Good." His voice is pleasant enough, but this is doing nothing for me. All the judges seem to like it. Simon agrees, though, that Blake is in danger of falling into a rut.
Oh, thank God Jordin Sparks has come along and snapped me out of my coma. She's singing No Doubt's "Hey Baby," which I hate, but she sounds really good. I prefer her take on the song much more than the original. She's another of the judges' darlings, and with good reason. I'm a bit put off by her Homeless Girl Scout outfit, though. What the...?
Closing out the show tonight is Chrustin Richardslake with No Doubt's "Don't Speak." Gwen doesn't like Chrustin's "vocal olympics" any more than I do. This kid needs more singing lessons and a new wardrobe. He's at least making strides with the clothing choices. He's gone from used-car salesman to bowling instructor to - tonight's look - out of work junior high teacher. But, I don't hear his voice getting any better. Just once I'd like to hear him sing a one syllable word. Just once. Of course, Randy loves all those runs. He likes the "flava." Paula would like to taste Chrustin's flava too. All she can manage to blurt out is "you're so goooooooooood." She's such a shameless hussy. Anyway, I really hope Chrustin can pull it together and I can go back to calling him Chris. There's something very sweet about him that always makes me feel bad about dissing him. He looks particularly melancholy tonight. Maybe he's sad about the whole shark thing too.
Will this be the end of the road for Sunjaya? I'm afraid the answer is still "no." However, I'm still holding out hope that he will be the one to go this week. Making fun of him isn't even that enjoyable anymore. I'm just sickened by him. I think the bottom three will be Sunjaya, Chris Sligh and Haley. I have a bad feeling that his performance tonight might be enough to get Chris bounced. While Sunjaya has nine lives, one bad performance is sometimes all it takes to end the ride for everyone else.
I was almost to the point of just skipping the video today, because neither my first nor my second choice was available on YouTube. I found the clips on iFilm and MySpace, but I can't seem to embed videos from those sites. So, I was ready to throw my computer out the nearest window and pout all day until I remembered that there was a Billy Idol video where he was kind of naked. Well, that perked me right up. Luckily, "Catch My Fall" is available on YouTube, so here it is for everyone's viewing pleasure. This actually was one of my favorite Idol songs, and watching the vid brings back such tingly, adolescent feelings.
My only complaint with this particular clip is the annoying menu that pops up every now and then. Obviously, the jackhole who taped this from TV didn't know how to keep his finger off of the remote's "display" button. But why am I griping? Billy Idol's in the shower!
Monday, March 26, 2007
To coincide with TV Guide's Sexy Issue, I've decided to take this time to pay homage to "the sexy." Straight men, if you want to shield your eyes and file a complaint that I'm not giving equal time to the ladies, go read Playboy. Or Penthouse. Or Maxim, FHM, the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue or the Victoria's Secret catalog. Or just turn on the TV. Any channel.
10. Jesse Bradford - Ah, such boyish charm! The first time I ever saw Jesse was in Bring it On, a movie that I'm not ashamed to admit to loving. Recently, I saw him in Happy Endings, and he still managed to look good with way too much facial hair. Never been a fan of facial hair, but the hair on Jesse's head is just how I like it: thick, unruly and dark. You'll notice that is a common trait that many of "my" men share. I'm noticing one other...I'll get to that later.
9. Patrick Dempsey - With him being so over-hyped in the media, I should probably be sick of Dr. McDreamy by now, but how could I be? He's gotta have the best hair on the list. Besides, his extreme sexiness is worth talking about ad nauseam, considering his extreme dorkiness in the '80s. Let him, and all of us, bask in his newfound hotness.
8. Paul Rudd - Another cute, boy-next-door type. However, there is always something behind his smile that kind of hints that he's hiding some dirty little secret. It's very endearing and appealing.
7. Chris Cornell - It's been proven that Chris can hit notes that can actually make women ovulate. I can't cite the exact studies but, trust me, it's the truth. Also, he's one of the few guys who always sports facial hair and can always pull it off.
6. Johnny Depp - He can put on all the bad wigs, makeup and fake teeth that he wants. We all still know that this (everyone, stare at picture...make sure to wipe that drool off your keyboards) is what he looks like underneath. He's almost too good looking to be on this list...I like my men slightly imperfect. But sexy and Johnny go together like Jump and Street, so he had to be here.
5. Bradley Cooper - This is a guy who has really caught my eye lately. I first noticed him as that total a-hole, Sack, from Wedding Crashers. He was the perfect, smarmy bad guy. I started seeing him as "the jerk" in a lot of movies, until Failure to Launch, where he played Matthew McConaughey's nature-loving best friend. (Yes, there was serious hottie overload in that movie.) He doesn't even have dark hair. He has the other trait I mentioned earlier though...it's coming.
4. Ewan McGregor - Another of the light-haired variety (well, sometimes) but I'm a sucker for the accent! Ewan is so cute, and he knows it without being too cocky. If you've ever seen him in an interview, you know what I'm talking about. He's got such a flirtatious energy about him that's really irresistible. A friend of mine keeps promising me that we're going to have a "naked Ewan McGregor night," where we will have a film festival of all the movies in which he's appeared in the buff. I only knew of one...imagine my delight when I found out there were more!
3. Jeremy Sisto - Well, we're at the top 3, and the order here hasn't changed in YEARS. Jeremy...my solid #3 man. Actually, I recently watched his film, The Movie Hero and his performance in that almost prompted me to bump him up to the #2 spot. However, I pictured #2 Man giving me that dark and brooding look he gets and I couldn't go through with it. But, #3 is still mighty fine. That hair. Those eyes. That voice. That...crooked mouth. That's what you've all been waiting for, folks. I never realized it until recently, but there's something about a crooked mouth that is so attractive to me. I love when a man smiles and it's kind of a smirk that travels diagonally up his face. Jesse, Bradley, Jeremy, and maybe even Paul all have it. I used to even think that the dorky singer from Third Eye Blind was cute too, and the first thing I noticed about him was that he had a crooked mouth. See what I mean when I say I like my guys slightly imperfect? I'm weird, I know.
2. Eddie Vedder - What can I say about this man that I haven't said a million times already? He touches my soul. What's hotter than that? Bearded or clean-shaven, long-hair or short hair, brunette or blonde (the platinum blonde phase was way hot, strangely enough), it doesn't matter. He even managed to stay beautiful with a mohawk, which isn't easy.
1. John Travolta - Unless this is the first time you've read my blog, this is no shock. Please don't ask me if I've seen the "chubby" pics of him in the hot tub. Please don't ask what I think about the "gay" rumors. Please don't start in on Scientology and Battlefield Earth. Many have tried to taint John in my eyes and all have failed. He was my first love, and I adore him. I don't care how much he weighs, I don't care if he's losing his hair or any of that other nonsense. He'll always be THE man.
Wow, I definitely have a type. Look especially at numbers 3, 8, 9 and 10 (and compare them to a young Johnny T). They all look like brothers...or at least cousins. Cold you imagine a family like that? I'd go skinny-dipping in that gene pool any day.
Saturday, March 24, 2007
Bo Catlett: "You have the idea and you put down what you want to say. Then you get somebody to add in the commas and shit...you come to the last page, you write in 'Fade out' and that's the end, you're done."
With the movie studios turning in their thinking caps and feeling content to repeatedly churn out modern spins on old '80s TV shows, I thought I would try my hand at developing my own movie treatments. Any soulless screenwriters out there who would like to help me get rich quick, give me a call.
* Joanie Loves Chachi
Starring Beyonce Knowles (Dreamgirls) as Joanie and Diego Luna (Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights) as Chachi.
Action/Adventure/Drama: When a Latino boy falls for an African-American girl, both of their families end up locked in a Capulet/Montague style feud. Because of all the turmoil, Joanie and Chachi flee home, move to New York and form a hip-hop group.
Just as their band signs a record contract and is on the verge of breaking big, news reaches Chachi that his older cousin, Fonzie, has been gunned down by a member of Joanie's family. Filled with rage, he throws away his musical dreams, and leaves her to exact his revenge on the killers.
Chachi is about to murder Joanie's brothers when he hears their band's song on the radio. Those beautiful, meaningful lyrics make him realize that more killing won't solve anything and, with tear-filled eyes, he gives a powerful speech that changes everyone's way of thinking. The end of the movie finds Joanie and Chachi's band performing to a sold-out crowd at Madison Square Garden, with both families finally together, proudly watching from the front row.
*I know that the studio will try to retitle it "Joanie HEARTS Chachi," but that will not happen. Not on my watch.
* One Day at a Time
Starring Tiffani Thiessen (Beverly Hills, 90210) as Barbara Cooper (aka "the pretty one"), Tori Spelling (Beverly Hills, 90210) as Julie Cooper (aka "the ugly one"), Valerie Bertinelli (the original One Day at a Time) as Mom, Ann Romano, and Joe Pantoliano (nearly every movie ever made) as Schneider.
Thriller: Recently divorced mother, Ann, and her two teenage daughters start a new life together in Indianapolis. Things are very tough on the girls, but soon they are befriended by the building superintendent, Schneider, who treats them like family.
As time goes on, Ann and the girls appreciate all that Schneider does for them, but start to feel that there is something "off" about him. When Ann rebuffs Schneider's sexual advances, they all soon find out that their feelings were dead right. The super snaps and makes the women prisoners in their own home, forcing them to pretend that they are all "one big, happy family."
Barbara finds a box of old newspaper clippings hidden in a closet which reveal that Schneider brutally murdered his wife and children a year ago, but got off on a technicality. When Schneider discovers that the girl knows his secret, a violent struggle ensues, and the women have to band together to stay alive and destroy their attacker.
* Kate & Allie
Starring Eva Longoria (Desperate Housewives) as Kate and Angelina Jolie (husband thief and third-world adoption expert) as Allie.
Romance: When Allie divorces her husband and gets custody of their two children, she moves to San Francisco and moves in with her best friend, Kate, also a divorcee raising a child. They form a special family and discover love along the way...with each other.
Once the two main characters discover their attraction to each other, the rest of the movie is full of gratuitous lesbian scenes that will guarantee that every straight man in America buys a ticket to see the film. Plot development is really inconsequential.
* Diff'rent Strokes
Starring R&B star Usher (She's All That) as Willis, Lindsay Lohan (Mean Girls, shares common interests with Dana Plato) as Kimberly and celeb spawn Jaden Smith (The Pursuit of Happyness) as Arnold. The film also reunites Richard Gere and Queen Latifah (Chicago) as Mr. Drummond and the newly created character, Wanda.
Drama: Widower, Philip Drummond, adopts two African-American sons after his maid Wanda, the boys' birth mother, abruptly leaves to follow her junkie boyfriend, abandoning them. The boys go from rags to riches and enjoy their new lives. Willis especially enjoys sharing a house (and often, a bedroom) with Drummond's free-spirited daughter, Kimberly, who introduces him to the wonderful world of sex, drugs and rock 'n roll.
Just when everyone is comfortable, Wanda returns, clean, sober and demanding her children back. A bitter court battle ensues and, although Arnold and Willis wish to stay with their rich new father, the judge grants Wanda full custody and prohibits Drummond from having anything to do with the boys. (Insert emotional, Oscar-seeking scene which features a sobbing Arnold being carried out of the courtroom by his mother while screaming, "Whatchoo talkin' 'bout Judge? Whatchoo talkin' 'bout??" This is a very poignant moment because it turns the normally cute and funny catch phrase into a heart-wrenching plea.)
Soon after, Kimberly announces that she is pregnant with Willis's baby, forcing the "family" to band together for the sake of the unborn child. As time passes, Drummond and Wanda learn about each other's "worlds" and find that they aren't so different. They come to respect and care for each other, everyone moves back into the mansion and Wanda takes her job back as Drummond's maid. Everyone lives happily together and Drummond and Wanda enjoy a hard-to-define relationship, much like Henry Higgins and Eliza Doolittle.
Comedy: Sam is a charismatic underachiever, ex-baseball star and proprietor of a local Boston bar called Cheers. The bar's eclectic staff and clientele are comprised of: an acid-tongued waitress with a bad perm; Sam's sweet, old, former coach; a dim-witted, young bartender; a chubby regular with a huge bar tab; a know-it-all mailman; and a troubled psychiatrist and his ice queen wife. Sam's humble bar catches the eye of Gary, the cocky owner of Gary's Old Towne Tavern. Gary intends to take over Cheers, and Sam's non-existent bookkeeping is making it all too easy for him. A foreclosing bank has stationed attorney Diane Chambers inside Cheers to finalize Gary's takeover of the bar. But Sam's charms win her over and Diane quits her job, becomes a waitress and joins his team of social rejects to beat the odds to try to save Cheers. How? A showdown softball competition against Gary's Old Towne Tavern.
The lovable Coach whips everyone into shape to prepare for the big game, but is tragically killed when the Cheers sign falls on his head. Sure that the sign was "loosened" by Gary in a prank-gone-wrong, Sam and the gang are more determined than ever to beat Gary and win one for the coach.
Why, yes...it is quite similar to Dodgeball. Thanks for noticing! It also boasts a somewhat familiar, all-star cast:
Vince Vaughn as Sam Malone
Drew Barrymore as Diane Chambers
Leah Remini as Carla Tortelli
Jack Black as Norm Peterson
Adam Sandler as Cliff Clavin
Owen Wilson as Woody Boyd
Jerry Stiller as Coach
Will Ferrell as Frasier Crane
Molly Shannon as Lilith Crane
Ben Stiller as Gary
Friday, March 23, 2007
I tried to resist posting on this topic, but those magnificent bastards at Best Week Ever posted such an adorable video, that I couldn't help myself. I, like every other sane person in the world, am totally in love with Knut, the polar bear cub who is being raised by zookeepers in Berlin. There are some animal rights activists who feel that the cub should be killed because he's been "tainted" by human contact and could now never survive in the wild or properly interact with other bears. I understand the reasoning behind this argument, but it's not like Knut is going to be dropped off in the wilderness to fend for himself. He's in a zoo. And more importantly, LOOK AT HIM!! Only a heartless scumbag would want to kill something so adorable. Oh sure, he'd be better off dead rather than be raised by humans...if the humans you're talking about are the kind of jerks that would feel good about killing a baby animal.
Wednesday, March 21, 2007
Wow, I really sucked this week! I predicted that the bottom three would be Sunjaya, Phil and Gina, and all of them were safe. Yes, that's right, Sunjaya is still safe. It's not even shocking anymore.
Last night, I almost picked Stephanie over Gina to be in the bottom, but changed my mind at the last minute. I still would've picked Phil to leave, so it wouldn't have really mattered. Still, I'm not surprised to see Steph go. No biggie. I knew Chrustin Richardslake wasn't going anywhere. (That's my new nickname for Chris Richardson. I could so write for Star magazine.)
Peter Noone and Lulu both blew Diana Ross out of the water with their performances. Although, Peter's attempts at dancing were worse than Ryan's, and the contestants all looked a bit frightened.
As for Lulu...well, I think the producers should see if she wants to be in the competition. She could spice the whole thing up. Simon certainly seemed to perk up when she hit the stage. That cougar was on the prowl tonight! She could certainly teach Haley a thing or two about showing off the milk without giving the whole store away for free. And if you all didn't think she looked like ONJ before, what do you think now that you've seen her in her modern version of Sandy II's outfit from Grease? She's electrifyin'!
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
This week's theme on AI is the '60s British Invasion, with Sidney Poitier's favorite one-hit wonder and Olivia Newton-John's doppelganger, Lulu, helping out the gals and head Hermit, Peter Noone, chattering his ginormous teeth at the boys. Oooh, something tells me I'm into something good.
I have no expectations whatsoever, but I've got $10 that says Gina will sing a Rolling Stones song. So Ryan, start me up.
(Okay, I'm done with the musical puns. Unless I see another golden opportunity.)
Opening the show is Haley Scarnato. Haley wants to be "more aggressive," so she chooses "Tell Him" by The Exciters. Right away she shows her new attitude by pulling the cheesiest move ever - heading into the audience. She doesn't sound that bad but hey, I don't think I sound that bad when I'm in the shower and no one is asking me to cut a record. It seems that Haley's definition of "aggressive" is "kinda slutty," so she's basically just wearing very little, showing off her gams (which, honestly, are pretty fabulous) and shaking her tats (which, honestly, are pretty flat) while trying not to trip over her stilettos. Randy, being a man, thinks it was "hot" with a lot of "yo factor" and Simon couldn't really give a proper critique because he didn't hear a word she was singing. Paula is still Paula. Since Simon has let me down where Haley is concerned once again, I will give the response he should have given: It was like some girl from a Nair commercial doing a dreadfully cutesy karaoke performance at a Hawaiian Tropic competition in a cabaret club on a cruise ship.
Next up, Chris Richardson gives us his version of Gerry & The Pacemakers' "Don't Let The Sun Catch You Cryin'." His goal of "finally nailing a song," remains out of reach. It's not horrible. It's actually the best I've heard him so far. But he still sounds like the 2nd or 3rd runner-up at the Justin Timberlake Soundalike contest. At least he's dressed a little better this week. He's gone from used car salesman to bowling instructor. A small step, but a step nonetheless. Randy and Simon both say this is Chris's best so far as well, but Simon still agrees with me that his nose-singing is annoying. Paula just shrieked and threw her panties onstage.
Stephanie Edwards goes for Dusty Springfield's "You Don't Have To Say You Love Me," one of my favorite oldies. Lulu like-likes her, but I'm not digging this. She sounded very whiny at the beginning and her voice continues to crack throughout the song. The Dawg quickly throws down the "pitchy" card, and Simon kicks up the "night club" comparison that would've been better used on Haley. Paula avoids the topic of singing completely, as usual, and tells Stephanie she looks great.
Yay! Another of my favorite oldies, "Time of the Season" by The Zombies, is getting the Blake Lewis treatment. I'm liking Blake more and more every week. I actually have no snarky comments for this...I really like his take on the song. He brings a modern feel to the song by beatboxing in place of that awesome bass line. I normally don't like people messing with my bass, but this is fun. All the judges seem to enjoy Blake's performance. The Dawg says it had the "yo factor." Then of course, Ryan displays his "mo factor" by attempting to beatbox, dance and subtly feel Blake up.
LaKisha Jones lugs about $1 million worth of diamonds onstage to sing Shirley Bassey's "Diamonds Are Forever." You know she's not getting to keep those diamonds forever. Some little dude with a briefcase will probably rip them off of her as soon as she gets backstage. Anyway, at the risk of sounding like Paula, the first thing I think when I see LaKisha is, "Damn, she looks good!" As for her performance, this girl always brings it. For some reason though, Randy wasn't blown away and Simon thinks she came across as "LaKisha in 50 years." Paula keeps blathering on about the diamonds. Is FOX still paying her to show up?
Following LaKisha is no easy task, and Phil Stacey's version of The Nashville Teens' "Tobacco Road" isn't making it any easier on him...or me. First of all, he looks like some guy they just pulled out of the audience. What did he do, wake up late from his nap and have to grab the first thing that he saw in his closet? Where are the stylists? I guess I'm focusing on the clothes because I'm realizing that I'm over Phil's yelling at this point. He's worn out his welcome with me. The Dawg and The Dimwit both kind of like it, but don't really have good reasons to back those opinions up. Simon compares Phil's performance to a bad bar band. Oh yeah. I've seen enough bad bar bands to feel his pain.
Jordin Sparks saves the day with another Shirley Bassey song, "I Who Have Nothing." Jordin was really belting it out in the rehearsal video, and Lulu belted a few shots of whiskey, apparently. She was getting a bit loopy. But back to the present, Jordin is really tearing it up with this song. She sounds fantastic. Unfortunately, the audience agrees and they're all on my damn nerves. Let the girl sing, dammit! You monkeys don't have to hoot and holler every 6.3 seconds. The judges think Jordin is fabulous, and why wouldn't they? Hey, who did Simon just wink at? As if it's not bad enough that he's making a fool of himself by drooling over that little tramp, Haley, now he's flirting with a stagehand or, possibly, Ryan! I'm not going to put up with this behavior for much longer. Oh Lord, and now he says that Jordin sang beautifully but complains that the song was so "gloomy" that he "wants to jump off a bridge." This just further illustrates my point from Monday, that Simon just doesn't understand that music is supposed to move you. Whether the emotion is happy or sad, if a piece of music can have an effect on you, that's good. Man, I'm really starting to think that it's over between us.
I now see that my imaginary relationship with Lord Cowell is the least of my worries, as Sunjaya Meka-leka-hi-meka-hiney-ho, er, Malakar takes the stage. Sunjaya is singing The Kinks' "You Really Got Me." Oh no, I'm not kidding. I wish I were. Does anyone like this? Hmm, there is an obviously deaf girl in the audience who is loving this. She's crying. Wow. She's sobbing hysterically. It's just like watching The Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show! Is she crying because she's happy, or does Sunjaya scare her, like he does me? Damn you, camera man, stop showing that blubbering kid!! She does not make this train wreck any easier to watch or hear. The judges are all kind of nice to Sunjaya. They're obviously trying to stave off the sympathy voters. Crying Girl's name is Ashley, of course. It had to have been either Ashley or Caitlin. She gets to hug Sunjaya. She's happy. I'm physically ill.
Gina Glocksen makes me feel a little better by proving me right and singing The Rolling Stones' "Paint it Black." Anyone who doubted my earlier Gina statement owes me $10!! I accept PayPal. I think this is probably Gina's best performance, but I'm still not wowed by her. She doesn't seem to show very much emotion...it's all very mechanical. The Dawg says "What's going down," which, as I've mentioned before, always means he's not thrilled. Simon thinks she's an example of "style over content" and seems annoyed with Paula. Big surprise. Actually, I think he's still fuming over Peter Noone's earlier comment about AI being a "voting competition" and not a "singing competition." Wow, Simon is really prone to pouting spells. Just one more reason for me to kick him to the curb.
Suddenly, Chris Sligh appears as if by magic from out of the audience. Hmm, I guess this proves that there is a cheesier move than going out into the crowd. Chris is singing The Zombies' "She's Not There" and sounds pretty good. I don't see any little girls weeping over him, but he's 100 times better than Sunjaya. He's not the best of the guys, which seems like an insult, and he's not the worst, which seems like not saying much. I don't know what to say. I just like Chris and I hope he hangs around for a while longer. Simon seems to have his sense of humor back and tells Chris that he's fun and has charisma. Paula says nothing of importance. The Dawg must love Chris because he laid it out like this, "Check it out baby, check it out. DUDE! I mean, yo, it was good, man, yo yo yo."
Closing things out is Melinda Doolittle, who is undoubtedly setting one of the judges up to say they saved the best for last. Melinda does "As Long As He Needs Me" by - guess who? That's right, Shirley Bassey. I really don't remember her as part of the "British Invasion," but I was born in '73 so what the hell do I know? And who really cares what Melinda sings, as long as she keeps singing? Hey, the crying girl is back! I guess she has some good taste...or she has emotional problems. Is it redundant at this point to say that Melinda is wonderful? Is it pointless to keep saying that she is going to walk away with the crown here? So, what else can I say? I guess I could say that I would've actually liked to hear her try her hand at The Kinks. Simon says they saved the best for last. Ah, we're so in sync. I love him again...and all the judges love Melinda. Then they smile sheepishly, look around and secretly wonder if they should just skip to the Final 3, let Melinda, LaKisha and Jordin fight it out and start over with a whole new batch of contestants.
So, who leaves tomorrow night? Again, it should be Sunjaya, but evil can't be killed so easily. I think the Bottom 3 will be Sunjaya, Phil and Gina. I'd like to have more faith and confidently predict that Sunjaya's time is up, but I have a feeling it will be Phil.
Here's a pretty random video for you all to enjoy - "Hang up the Phone" by Annie Golden. A lot of you may be thinking, "Hang up the what by whootie who?" because the song was never a huge hit. Still, in my pre-MTV, Night Tracks-lovin' days, I recall seeing this vid quite a bit. At the time, I thought Annie was kind of a Cyndi Lauper knock-off, but I still thought the song was really catchy. As it turns out, Annie starred in the film version of Hair and, in the late '70s, fronted a punk band called The Shirts. So, who knows...maybe Cyndi was emulating her??
I'll be interested to know how many of you remember this one...
Monday, March 19, 2007
Like the goop that's always accumulating in the corners of our eyes, the following news items are curiously fascinating:
Simon Cowell Says He's Bigger Than Springsteen - Simon, I love you. But this is why it would never work between us. You only think of music as a business. You don't feel it in your heart and soul. It's all dollars and cents to you. You think because you can sell more units than The Boss that that makes you more important to the music industry? It's not that hard to spot a trend and capitalize on it. Anyone in the right position could achieve what you have. But not many could write something as brilliant as "Jungleland."
Rehab is Wasted on the Young and Famous - It seems that post-rehab Lindsay Lohan is even more of a menace than she was before. Since coming back from her "getaway," she's: 1.) Run over a photographer with her BMW 2.) Hooked up with the much-older, big-time player, Jude Law, either because she's a silly ho or to spite her ex, who is now dating Jude's ex, Sienna Miller 3.) Flipped out on fans who came to hear her DJ at a NYC club and 4.) Forgotten the point of detox, as illustrated by her still-constant partying. Then there's Britney Spears, who recently got nasty with a fellow rehabber in the bushes near the tennis court of her treatment center. She's also reportedly acting like a little brat, being rude to staff, throwing temper tantrums and leaving huge messes in her wake. Someone needs to fry LiLo with some good ol' fashioned shock treatment. As for Britney, she's already prepped her head for a lobotomy, so why not? I'm sure it would be a very quick operation.
Heather Mills Has a Leg Up on the Competition - The new season of Dancing with the Stars premieres tonight, featuring the cute Beatle's soon-to-be ex teetering around on her prosthetic leg. She claims she's not doing the show for publicity. Well, no! Of course not! Just like she didn't make up all that nonsense about Paul being worse than the Marquis de Sade. Hey, I know it must be hard to lose a limb, but that doesn't give a person the right to turn into an evil, lying witch. So, I hope her leg does fly off, spins around and her fake foot knocks out all of her horsey teeth.
What's A Three-Way, Alex? Noooo...soooorry. The Correct Answer is 'What is a Menage a Trois?' - On March 16, for the first time in the show's history, Jeopardy! ended in a three-way tie. The odds of this happening were calculated by some nerdy guy as being one in 25 million. The probability of Alex Trebek getting through an entire game without being a condescending jackass, however, is about 10 times less likely.
So Many Reunion Tours, So Little Spending Cash - It seems that a bunch of old '80s, and even '90s, musical favorites are gearing up for reunions this year. Most importantly, for me, is the recent announcement of a Squeeze tour. I would definitely dole out the big bucks to see those guys back together. I'd love to catch Crowded House and The Police too, but I don't know if my bank account could handle all that action. Wouldn't a Squeeze/Crowded House double-bill just beat all? To hear both Glenn Tilbrook and Neil Finn in the same night...and if they performed a song together? Good Lord. I would end up with a serious, irreversible perma-grin.
Friday, March 16, 2007
Thursday, March 15, 2007
My prediction from Tuesday: "As for who will be leaving this week...if there is any justice in the world, it will be Sunjaya. I have a feeling that even his sympathy voters are starting to lose interest. Still, a lot of dumb 12 year-olds may really take to his new Shirley Temple curls and keep backing him. If not Sunjaya, it will probably be Brandon."
Well, it looks like the Good Ship Lollipop won't be docking anytime soon. Sunjaya was saved and Brandon was forced to walk the plank. I don't know if it's the 12 year-olds or the support of VoteForTheWorst.com that's keeping this doofus in the game.
By the way, I think The Dawg should've told Diana Ross she was pitchy last night. She was. I'm just keeping it real. I kept waiting for Jennifer Hudson to storm the stage and yell, "She cain't sing like me!" and then burst into "And I'm Telling You." Alas, it only happened in my head.
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Ah, Spring has arrived! Simon Cowell is wearing a white tee-shirt.
Tonight begins the "real" competition on American Idol and, unlike Ryan Seacrest, I won't waste time sucking up to Ford and Coca-Cola. I'll just dive right in. It's Diana Ross night, so someone better sing "Upside Down" or my inner disco diva will be pissed.
Brandon Rogers - The big question upon hearing Brandon's version of "You Can't Hurry Love" is - how lame are you when Phil Collins can out-soul you? I mean, he's definitely not the worst contestant, but he's living on borrowed time. His good looks can only get him so far before he collapses under the weight of his own blandness. If the other Idols can take away anything from this performance, it's that they should never bust out quasi-Elvis moves. They not only look stupid, but doing them can also make you forget your lyrics. He didn't even cover his flub very well, what with the big, toothy grin that just screamed, "D'oh!" At judgment time, even The Dawg won't throw him a bone and Simon is honest, as usual, calling him "unoriginal." Paula said something. I'm sure she said something because I saw her lips moving, but I couldn't tell you what it was or if it was even in English. Seacrest then offers up some excuses for Brandon, like how singing on the big stage must be tough and going first must be tougher. Hey, even Billy Ocean knows that when the going gets tough, the tough get going. Hmm, I wonder when Billy Ocean night will be?
Before Melinda sings, Ryan asks her a viewer question and she endearingly reveals that she's a sweatpants and tennis-shoes kinda gal. As if Melinda needs to rack up more points with the public. Then, Simon and Ryan almost divulge too much about Ryan's sexual preference and possible women's shoe fetish. Moving on...
Melinda Doolittle - So as not to further drive the already-overdone "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" into the ground, and uh, since Diana Ross never sang that, Melinda opts for The Wiz's take on the same theme, "Home." As everyone is probably already aware, Melinda is the one to beat in this game. She's excellent, as usual. However, while watching her, I'm becoming increasingly aggravated with the audience's penchant for cheering every time someone hits a high note, holds a note for more than 5 seconds, gets slightly louder or continues breathing. This isn't The Dawg's favorite performance of Melinda's, but it was still "hot." Paula cried. I think her bottle of vodka is empty. Simon proves, once again, that he and I are soulmates by taking the words right out of my mouth and praising Melinda like he should.
Chris Sligh - Chris certainly has Diana's hair, but can he pull off "Endless Love?" Without Lord Lionel Richie's help, no less? I like Chris, and I give him an "A" for effort on this one, but his arrangement just sounded like the "Endless Love" lyrics put to the music of Coldplay's "Clocks." The Dawg thinks it sounded like "Speed of Sound." Yo, yo, yo, dude, that's whack! Well, aight, I'll give that one to him. It's hard to tell those two songs apart. Simon agrees that Chris "murdered" the arrangement and Paula is all nice and sweet....no, hold the phone! Paula is totally calling Chris out as a hipster! This is amazing. And Chris doesn't even crack wise! What the hell is going on? Who are these people?
Gina Glocksen - Something has always bothered me about Gina. I don't quite get why she's here. I think it has more to do with her filling the role of token "rock chick" than her having serious talent. Her performance of "Love Child" isn't doing anything to improve my opinion of her. It's just okay. Everything about her just screams karaoke to me. Simon agrees. The Dawg drops the first big P-bomb of the night. (That's "pitchy" for y'all not in the know.) Then Paula mumbles something about Gina's enunciation, which would have never occured to her had Ms. Ross not harped on that topic during Gina's pre-performance video. Then Madam Abdul actually calls this tune about an illegitimate child a "feelgood song." Will someone get her some more Absolut, please?
Sunjaya Malakar - He still can't sing and I still can't spell his name properly. And if Sunjaya wasn't the laughing stock of AI before, his Greg Brady-meets-Elaine Benes hairdo just made him the biggest comedy star on FOX. Why do the hacks always get the best songs? The creepy little doll is completely butchering "Ain't No Mountain High Enough," and I can actually hear Simon losing hair. He's not even singing this song, he's speaking it. This is like some bad combination of the deleted bloopers reel of High School Musical and home videos from the Neverland Ranch. Ugh. Randy opens his critique with "What's going down?" Now, there are a few things on AI that never vary. One of those is that when The Dawg uses that phrase, it's gonna be bad. He doesn't tell Sunjaya the song was bad though. He calls it "unlistenable." Ouch. Paula feels the need to deaden Randy's blow and soften Simon's impending one, so she blathers on about how Sunjaya is pure love. Boy, she really is drunk if she doesn't realize that Sunjaya's blinding smile is, in fact, hiding pure evil. Simon tries to be negative, and the audience halfheartedly boos out of habit. Then Simon just tells Sunjaya that he's "brave" and smirks the smirk of a man who knows he won't have to listen to that brave, horrible voice for much longer.
Haley Scarnato - Haley's already in trouble, because she tells us that she's singing "Missing You" in the hopes that the song will show some emotion for her. Diana Ross looks distracted. I think she's itching for a costume change. Haley tells Diana that she's singing this song for her fiancee back home. Diana basically says, "Aw, how sweet...you know, this song is really about the death of a musical legend. But whatever. Break a leg, honey." Maybe Haley should run out onstage and break her leg, because that would be much more entertaining. She's whispering. Now she's yelling. Now she...has gas? I don't know. She looks like she's in pain. Oh, and now she's forgetting the words and singing the ones she remembers off-key. And all this while wearing some horrible Mary Kate and Ashley-esque lampshade dress. Haley's lucky I'm not one of the judges, because I'm the only one not being swayed by her fragile little girl act. The Dawg says something quickly and just tries to not make her cry. Paula, Mistress of the Obvious, points out how beautiful Haley is and continues to patronize her by focusing solely on her looks and avoiding any talk of her vocal ability. Simon...didn't think it was that bad!?!? What the...?!?! Oh, Simon. How you disappoint me. He's obviously letting the other head judge this performance. Oh well. I'm sure that her weeping will keep Haley around for at least another week. There are a lot of suckers out there. Case in point, Paula just told Haley not to worry about forgetting her words because "the audience doesn't know anything." Drunky McDrunkerson totally dissed the audience...and they applauded!
Phil Stacey - The Bald One sings "I'm Gonna Make You Love Me" very well, but it's all a little too Lite-FM for my taste. And this is coming from a girl who loves Air Supply. Still, after the last two Idols, it's nice to hear someone sing in tune. Randy also loved the vocals but thought it was a little boring. I think Paula said, "Whatever Randy said." Simon made it unanimous - it was just okay.
LaKisha Jones - LaKisha rarely disappoints, and her version of "God Bless The Child" is no exception. Something's missing though...I feel like the whole audience should be smoking during this performance. It's very smooth. I think The Dawg is in heat. He thinks LaKisha is "sensational." Paula says something nice. Simon says that LaKisha and Melinda are in a totally different league from all the other singers.
Blake Lewis - The little beatboxing wonder decides to put a "modern" spin on "You Keep Me Hanging On." Yet, strangely enough, it sounds even more '80s than Kim Wilde's version...which is probably why I kind of dug it. It's like a little Pet Shop Boys mixed with some club kid nonsense. The Dawg says he's a huge Blake fan, but this didn't quite do it for him. He jibber-jabbered something about "classics," which Paula claims to have understood. Please. She can't even understand what she's saying half the time. Simon doesn't get Blake's take on the song either. He, much more succinctly, explains that classics shouldn't be "messed with." Meanwhile, backstage, the unoriginal, non-classic-messin' Brandon Rogers slowly loses his mind.
Stephanie Edwards - I'm not a huge fan of Stephanie's usual Beyonce-light, shrieking routine, but she actually sounds pretty good singing "Love Hangover." I guess this is as close to "Upside Down" as I'm gonna get. Or is it? Stephanie never brings the funk and, as Simon says, basically just keeps singing the intro. Apparently she forgot some words too. I didn't even notice, so I guess Paula's earlier diss might have some truth to it. Paula's critique of Stephanie is less memorable than the performance, and Randy says something like, "so, it was aight, yo."
Chris Richardson - I have to get used to this kid, because he's sure to make it to at least the Top 5. I keep wanting to like Chris, like all the other girls, but his performance of "The Boss" is just weak. He's cute, but the used-car salesman suit has to go. More importantly, he needs singing lessons. I'm so sick of that nasally, whiny Justin Timberlake-meets-Nick Carter vocal style. The Dawg thinks Chris kind of over-did it, and Paula thinks...well, we all know what Paula thinks. I haven't seen her mooning over anyone this much since that Corey dude. Lust is blind and, apparently, deaf. Thankfully, Simon backs me up by telling Chris that he's been getting by on looks and charm, but that his vocals were "dreadful."
Jordin Sparks - Diana Ross explains to Jordin how important it is to really feel the lyrics and tell the story of "If We Hold On Together" - a song from a movie about animated dinosaurs. Gee, I hope she can bring the pathos required to get across Littlefoot's complex emotions. I haven't really been a fan of Jordin's until tonight. That dino song really put her over the top for me. Actually, Ms. Ross, she rose above the painfully boring song to give a solid, powerful performance. Paula is just sitting there gushing. Simon agrees that Jordin can hold her own with the other two powerhouse girls, and tells her she has a shot at the finals. Randy says that Jordin has just made it a three-girl race, between her, Melinda and LaKisha. Oh, that sound of breaking glass off-camera? That was just Stephanie Edwards out in the parking lot smashing in The Dawg's windshield.
There isn't a doubt in my mind that this year's winner is going to be a woman. The guys are all pretty underwhelming...and some are just plain awful. I don't think I'm going too far out on a limb by predicting that your 2007 Idol will be Melinda Doolittle. Although, I wouldn't be surprised if Jordin snuck in there. The viewers (and producers) like young stars.
As for who will be leaving this week...if there is any justice in the world, it will be Sunjaya. I have a feeling that even his sympathy voters are starting to lose interest. Still, a lot of dumb 12 year-olds may really take to his new Shirley Temple curls and keep backing him. If not Sunjaya, it will probably be Brandon.
I have no idea what made me think of this song, and I was sure that I wouldn't find the video on YouTube, but I should've realized that everything is on YouTube. I don't know how many of you will remember this song or band, but it's "Dirty Love" by Thunder.
I actually have Backstreet Symphony on cassette and, furthermore, I remember really digging it, even though it was released in 1990, just as hair bands were going out of style. I can't remember the last time I listened to it, but I seem to recall the song "Until My Dying Day" being one of those over-the-top, epic power ballads that I loved so much. Other than that one and this song, which was Thunder's first single, I don't remember much else about these guys. I guess they were kind of like the British Mr. Big.
Wow, this lead singer's voice sounds so familiar. He sounds just like someone else, but I can't quite put my finger on who. I'm thinking maybe Henry Lee Summer? Unfortunately, Henry Lee's video for "I Wish I Had a Girl" can't be embedded, so you will all have to check it out here and let me know what you think.
Monday, March 12, 2007
Getting back on the scary movie topic, this is probably the best thing I've ever seen on YouTube. I guess it's been around for a few months now, but if you haven't seen it yet, you simply must. Chris Rule is either a guy with way too much time on his hands or a true genius...with probably still too much time on his hands.
I just realized that I've been spelling Sunjaya's name wrong all this time. It's actually Sanjaya. However, I've decided that I'm going to continue misspelling it. If I didn't, it would ruin my old line about how "two Suns should've gone down" on the last elimination show. And really, until he learns how to sing, I don't think he deserves to have his named spelled correctly.
Hey, that Sunjaya kid doesn't need American Idol! I think I saw him in the trailer for this movie.
So, will any of you shell out the $10 to see Dead Silence? I'd like to dismiss it as just another cheesy horror flick, but the trailer gives me the heebie-jeebies. That's why I just posted the link (above) instead of the actual video. I don't want evil dummies on my blog. (The picture of Sunjaya might even have to go at some point.) Some people are afraid of clowns, some are afraid of ghosts...I'm afraid of dummies. So, uh, perhaps we should all stop calling them "dummies." That might be why they have such homicidal tendencies.
Friday, March 09, 2007
Some sad news for classic rock fans - Brad Delp, lead singer of Boston, died this afternoon at the age of 55. According to the police report, there was no evidence of foul play, but his passing is being categorized as "untimely." Delp was alone in his home at the time of death, and no cause has been determined as of yet.
I never realized until today that Boston released a new record in 2002, Corporate America, but now I feel compelled to check it out. I just hope that it's their last. I hope that the surviving members don't try to replace Delp. His shoes were much too big to fill. His was truly one of the great voices in rock history, and he'll be missed.
Boston was one of the most popular bands in the late '70s and early '80s, known for consistently turning out ol' fashioned, feel-good party rock. They have, unfortunately, become somewhat maligned over the years, much like other classic rock faves Styx or Kansas. Indie snobs would like to dismiss Boston's catalog of work as nothing more than soundalike, drunken frat boy music. They're wrong.
Regarding the "soundalike" part of that description - yes, it is true that a Boston song is pretty easy to identify. They have a signature sound that hinges on Tom Scholz's fuzzy guitar (achieved through much experimentation with amps and mics) and Delp's amazing vocals. However, their songs aren't so alike that you can't distinguish one from the other. They just all fit a certain mold.
As for the "drunken frat boy music" title - well, what's wrong with party music? I'll tell you - not a damn thing! But, that's not all Boston is about. Sure, the songs are great for blasting out the neighbors, tokin' and forgetting about your troubles, but they are also musically well-composed with simple yet vivid, memorable lyrics. And, personally, I love a dash of musical drama now and then, which Boston was pretty good at serving.
I would do a Boston shuffle on my iPod as a tribute, but I am the only person in America without an iPod. So, do me a favor, everyone. Here are my ten favorite Boston songs. Put 'em on your pod. Shuffle. Think of me. Think of Brad. Thank God for rock 'n roll. Then, punch an indie snob. You'll feel good, I promise.
Top 10 Boston Tunes:
1. Amanda - I can't stress enough how wonderfully dramatic this song is. Who didn't want to be Amanda when this came out? Who still doesn't? One of the best love songs EVER.
2. A Man I'll Never Be - More drama. Just a wonderful, gut-wrenchingly emotional song.
3. Something About You - Whatever it is, he's got-ta got-ta have you.
4. Feelin' Satisfied - "You gotta have a little rock 'n' roll music to get you through the stormy weather." That's what I've been trying to tell you people!
5. Longtime - "You'll forget about me after I've been gone." No we won't, Brad.
6. Rock and Roll Band - For some reason, everytime I hear this song now, the last verse always makes me think of the end of "Wayne's World." And it's still so fun to sing that part way up high: "Sign a record company contract..."
7. Peace of Mind - If anyone understands about indecision, it's me.
8. Hitch A Ride - Pretty lyrics and an even prettier guitar solo/outro.
9. More Than A Feeling - "When I'm tired and thinking cold, I hide in my music, forget the day." How I love odes to odes.
10. Let Me Take You Home Tonight - Taking us back to a simpler time when it was actually cool for a man to call a woman "mama."
Thursday, March 08, 2007
Sing it with me, y'all: Nobody does it Vedder....makes me feel sad for the Head.
Justice has been served. Sundance Head is gone. Note to the Top 12 American Idol finalists: there are certain artists you should never cover. Chief among them are Bruce Springsteen, Led Zeppelin, Stevie Nicks and Pearl Jam (obviously). You'll just sound like a very pale imitation unless you are a future classic-in-waiting, capable of infusing those artists' songs with some true originality, which I doubt any of you are.
The other 3 contestants getting the boot tonight were Jared Cotter, Sabrina Sloan and Antonella Barba. No shock where Antonella is concerned. Naked pictures can only hold the public's interest for so long. Her supporters must have finally realized that she couldn't sing.
I was a bit surprised that Jared and Sabrina didn't make it. Jared has been consistently bland, but in a sea of amazingly underwhelming guys he certainly wasn't the worst. Obviously, two Suns should've gone down tonight...Sundance and Sunjaya.
As for Sabrina, last night's performance wasn't her best but at least she didn't just scream off-key, which is what Stephanie Edwards did. I don't quite understand the judges' love for her. Then there is Haley Scarnato, who bores everyone, possibly even herself, to tears. Either one of them should've been waving bye-bye to AI tonight - not Sabrina.
Next week, the real competition starts, and my Top 12 assessment and predictions will follow shortly thereafter.
Wednesday, March 07, 2007
As many of you know, I had been rooting for Sunjaya to get the boot from American Idol, primarily because of his intensely high creep-out factor. Last night, however, another contestant did something so vile...so blasphemous, that I no longer care if that little wooden boy sticks around. I don't even care if he makes it all the way to the Top 3. There is a greater evil at hand on AI, and it must be dealt with. Sundance Head must be destroyed.
Sundance, what makes you think that being one of the best blues-light karaoke singers at your local dive qualifies you to touch a Pearl Jam song? You shouldn't be allowed to own a Pearl Jam record after shredding "Jeremy" like you did. You shouldn't even be allowed to say the words "pearl" or "jam" again. You should be banned from even having jam on toast, you hack.
When Seacrest announced prior to the commercial break that Sun BlockHead would be doing a PJ song, I should've turned the TV off right then and there. But no, my morbid curiosity got the best of me. Not surprisingly, Paula and Randy thought the performance was just fine. Simon proved, once again, that he's the only judge with a brain in his head. He didn't use the word "ghastly" though, as he often does. If ever there was a time to pull that baby out, it was during that peformance. I'm just hoping that I'll eventually forget the horror. My inner voice keeps chanting, try to forget this...try to erase this from the blackboard. I'll try. Until then, I'll just stand around looking like this:
But not nearly as hot.
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
I was a little worried that I wasn't going to come up with a video this week, but after recommending a Faith No More song to Jef, I decided to post "Falling to Pieces." I'm sure that everyone remembers their big hit, "Epic," but I was always much more fond of this one. And I had such a thing for Mike Patton. Yum.
That song I recommended, by the way, was "Edge of the World." You should all look that one up. At the risk of sounding like Paris Hilton, it's hot.
Monday, March 05, 2007
Submitted for your amusement: the latest nonsensical mutterings of Diddy or Puffy or Puff the Magic Diddy...whatever name that samplin' mofo is going by these days.
1. "I'll smack flames out of your ass." Stop laughing, this is supposed to be a threat. Recently, Gerald Rechnitzer, who will henceforth be known as "some dude," filed a lawsuit against Diddy, claiming that the Puffmeister not only had the audacity to chat up his girlfriend while he was in the little boy's room, but that when he came out to retrieve her, Diddy-o flipped out and yelled, "What the f**k you looking at dude? I'll smack flames out of your ass!" Then Staypuft punched the dude in the jaw and spit on his woman, 'cause that's how he rolls. Oh no, wait, P. Dud hasn't actually commented on how he rolls at this point.
Now, I know that there are a lot of wacky people out there who think that suing celebrities is a good way to make some fast cash, so it's possible that this is just a bunch of diddy-doody. However, if I made a false accusation against someone, I doubt I would fabricate a battle-cry like, "I'll smack flames out of your ass." What does that mean? Not a thing. Who says that? Not normal people. Picture those words coming out of anyone else's mouth but Po-Diddly. It just doesn't work.
That's why I'm inclined to believe that this incident really did happen. That's a Diddy-ism if ever there was one.
2. "I shave down there. I do it myself - or I have my young lady help me, because I don't want to get no nicks." Diddy just cop to shaving his pubes? Yep, and he's proud of it. And don't worry, the young lady he's talking about is his girlfriend. You know, because women like it when men call them their "young ladies." If I had a boyfriend who referred to me as "his young lady," I'd smack flames out of his ass.
In this story - yes, let's all marvel that this was actually a story in the first place and someone actually got paid to write it - The Puffinator goes on to brag about his lovemaking skills. Obviously, ripping off Sting's music just didn't make him happy enough, so he decided to rip off his "tantric sex" schtick too. Evidently, he and his young lady can get it on for up to 28 hours. If the idea of that doesn't make you nearly hurl, your stomach is stronger than mine. I'm sorry, but I wouldn't even want to have sex with John Travolta or Eddie Vedder for 28 hours. At some point, I'd just need to take a nap. And some pictures.