Monday, June 29, 2009

Hung: What Is YOUR “Tool” For Success?

The new HBO show Hung recently aired its pilot. You have to say one thing about the people at HBO, they know how to make a touchy subject like the Iraq war, racism and in this case man whoring, honest and entertaining. That is what you get in this new dramedy set in one of the hardest hit areas, economically speaking, in the U.S. namely, Detroit Michigan. The story is centered round a high school teacher; he is really the schools head coach. He, like many these days, is finding it hard to keep his head above water when it comes to the bills, to make matters worse he is recently divorced and has had to move into his parents house, which before his divorce was rented out as a second source of income. Living there with his two children the coach got by, that is until his last refuge, this little cottage of a house, burns to the grown. And since money has been tight he was late on the insurance payment, so, he is double screwed. Not being able to even provide a roof for his children’s heads anymore, his kids decide that they would rather live with mom. What is this poor guy supposed to do? Living out of a tent in the back yard of the chard remains of his childhood home, he actually starts to take part in those ridiculous money making seminars. But it is through these seminars that our protagonist “finds his tool for success”… in his pants. You see, on any other network a man in the same situation would find another way to make some money on the side, anything else. Not so with HBO… that could be their motto, it rhymes and everything. No, the coach realizes that his big dick is in fact his TOOL for success and puts it out there on… where else Craigslist. This show has stumbled upon an untapped resource big dick equity, it is pretty much a safety net for the midnight cowboy in every man, a last stitch act of bravado before entering the poor house. The show has heart and though the content may suggest otherwise, it is not too explicit… at least the pilot wasn’t. Definitely check this show out, who knows maybe you may pick up some notes if you too have to fall back on your big dick equity. This is a great show

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Fox's New Sci-Fi show Virtuality: A Big Letdown

In the new FOX show Virtuality a crew of astronauts, travel to a distant star in search for a new world. To make matter more exciting in this not to distant future Earth is on its last legs and the human race as a whole is depending on the crew to find them a new home world. But is everything so clear cut? That is the general foundation for the show. The pilot episode proved to be less than exciting, with dull conversation and 2001: Space Odyssey eske exterior shots of the crews’ space ship the Phaeton. Didn’t most people fall asleep during the twenty minutes of slow moving space shots in that 2001: Space Odyssey? So, why would they incorporate that style of camera shots in this new series? It seems like a poor start just in terms of style. The thing about the pilot episode was that it was boring, long and worst of all you don’t care about the cast. You don’t get that sense of interest that some may have had with Battlestar Galactica in its introductory mini-series.

The idea that the crew is a part of some kind of interstellar version of Survivor is something, it seems appropriate that Fox make a scripted show about a reality show, there is something poetic about that. Fox the great reality show monster making a sci-fi show about a crew on an extended space journey, while a part of the show is about how the mission is funded by a large corporation and broadcast by Fox. It’s a little bit of Fox on Fox action, and it’s funny though it does not redeem the show itself.

Spoiler Alert: At the end of the episode the Capitan of the ship is killed, yet reappears in the virtual reality visors that are the true focus of the show, spouting lines from Alice in Wonder Land (Matrix?). These virtual reality visors, act as a kind of escape for the crew, that is until they start being attacked by a mysterious figure who shoots, rapes, and throws crew members off of mount ranges.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Network TV vs. Paid For TV

Has anyone else noticed that when it comes to comparing network television or free TV to it's paid for counterpart there appears to be a quality division. In terms of innovative ideas and relevant content the cable channels have got it made. That's not to say cable has cornered the market on innovation and relevance, with nonsensical shows like John From Cincinnati. In which, the ranting of a would-be profit permeates a storyline that takes place within an unlikely circle of morally eclectic people. Other than that it does appear television has a quality differential that starts and begins at your cable companies' premium subscription.

    Also, it seems that the most interesting of the dramas almost always involve someone with an addiction of sorts. This is no accident. The consumers of North America are addicted to things ranging from abstract obsessions with fear to the delectably tangible Big Mac hamburger. Of course this obsessive behavior would peak the interest of some of the more observant writers for HBO and SHOWTIME. Shows like Californication, Rescue Me, and even John Form Cincinnati tackle the pangs of addiction and the loss of one's self control. The maintaining and control of these negative qualities of people seem to draw a raw and sometimes disturbing picture of our current state of being. Some people are firm believers in the idea that our day-to-day life is reflected (in an exaggerated way) by the artistic expressions produced in it's time. By this token we have lost our interest in the mundane and ordinary and can only be remotely entertained by the most outrageous.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles - Why It Was Good & Why It Was Bad

Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles takes place a few years after T2 was set. Sarah and John Connor are living a normal life keeping under the radar of any possibly killer robots. The Connor’s life is once again upended on account of an attack on the Messiah of the future John, while is at high school. Not to worry though the future of the human race is not ended yet again as a new type of terminator comes into place as a sort of replacement for good old Arnold in the form a of young woman played by firefly’s Summer Glau. In order to escape the ever pursuing and attacking Terminator both mother and son along with girl-bot find and use a time machine hidden within the safe of a bank and travel back to the future… no to our present and the characters future.
Sounds exiting right? Well as fast as the excitement came it ended. Both of the two seasons made are only lightly peppered with entertaining content. The part of the show which makes it worth the watch are those little throwbacks to the films (the first two not the third), such as exposed metal skeletons, truck chases, and a few really obvious attempts at benefited, straight from the movies elements. If you choose, you can watch out for them yourselves. This show is more for diehard fans of the Terminator movies, but let that be an excuse to watch the movies as a kind of pre gaming for the TV show.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Mad Men… Things Were Better in The 50’s

Ad Men (not people) are center stage for this period drama. Well not really, unlike the time which the show is set both genders are given equal opportunity on screen. Set in an advertisement firm in the mid 50’s, the show provides a window into an era which for most is considered a better time, but the characters are hardly plucked from the set of Leave it to Beaver or Happy Days. Focusing mainly on Don Draper, the show gives the viewer a unique and sometimes startling perspective on the era on the cusp of a revolution. Draper has a family, wife, kids, a house with a white picket fence, but he also has a mistress, a drinking problem, and is going through a mid-life/existential crisis (mid-life in the 50’s being about thirty-two). On a purely esthetic level the show is unmatched; with its rockwellian style the show can truly engulf your senses. The attractive visuals are tempered by the often disturbing (sometimes endearing) misogynistic overtones. As a show set in the 50’s it is less like a homage and more of a deconstruction, one may look at it as a cautionary tale, for those of us who love to sing the praises of past eras. There is a certain part of everyone that could find this show appealing, just in terms of abstract simplicity. Who doesn’t want to be that guy that can so smoothly sit in a gray wool suit, smoking a Lucky Strike cigarette and enjoying a cocktail, all the while being on the clock? (Probably the woman being patted on the bum after pouring the drink)

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Summer Glau Is A Shape Shifter!

As an actress, Dancer and most notably creepy, Summer Glau is an oddity. Not quite Hot and Not quite Ugly. She is what was aptly titled a two face by the long syndicated show Seinfeld. The basic idea behind the two face theory is that a person, in this case a women, can look very attractive in one light while looking completely freakish in another. It also goes beyond bad lighting, a two face is someone that is physically almost unrecognizable in one atmosphere (lighting or otherwise) to another.
As you can see there is a significant change in the face area, making my point that she is a two face and very possibly a shape shifter of some kind. Thank you.