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Archive for the ‘Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood’ Category

Creep, Creeper, Creepiest: A threesome for the ages

In Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood, People are so weird on April 1, 2009 at 10:45 pm

In one fell swoop during a five minute span of True Hollywood Story: Jenna Jameson, E! unveiled to the world the guys behind the scenes of the porn world.   Parading three men who commented on Jameson during the early years of her career, the show’s train started with the co-CEO of the Vivid porn empire, moved on to the stylist who prepared Jameson for her first scene (thus becoming the answer to a trivia question), and then finished with the Senior Editor of a little publication called The Adult Video News. That’s right, senior editor.

Without further adieu, let’s start from the top. . . and move quickly to rock bottom.

The Creep:

Steven Hirsch, Co-CEO of Vivid Entertainment Group

Steven looks a lot like one of the Maloof brothers, the freewheeling billionaire playboys who own the NBA’s Sacramento Kings.  And the similarities don’t stop there: in order to get signed by either the Kings or Vivid, being a good ball handler is key.  You saw that one coming, didn’t you?

Odds of a Steven Hirsch / Paris Hilton wedding in the next ten years?  100 t0 1.  Odds of Steven signing Lindsay Lohan to a film deal? 25 to 1.  Odds of him being connected to organized crime? 7 to 1.  Odds of him doing enough cocaine to kill an elephant? 3 to 1.  Odds of him giving me the chills? 1 to 1.

"Daddy, how did you win that trophy?"

"Daddy, how did you win that trophy?"

The Creeper:

Lee Garland, makeup artist

It’s amazing what a stencil and some black spray paint can achieve.

Cha Cha Cha Chia!

Cha Cha Cha Chia!

The Creepiest:

Mark Kernes, Senior Editor of Adult Video News

According to wikipedia, Adult Video News is a monthly publication with 40,000 subscribers that consists of 80% ads.  According to the below picture, Mark Kernes makes the principal in Billy Madison look attractive.  Even without his lofty title, this is the kind of man who obviously knows his porn.  And his suspenders.

You like porn? Shocking

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Bob Barker, come back to me

In Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood on March 29, 2009 at 5:59 pm

I recently realized that while I talked a big game about pledging to never again watch The Price is Right due to Drew Carey, I relapsed back to the show at one of the first opportunities since that writing.  Flipping through the channels last week, I fell upon the Showcase Showdown, and in accordance with one of my personal rules, I could not change the channel.  Final Jeopardy.  Fast Money on the Family Feud.  The final puzzle on Wheel of Fortune.  These are four segments of television I will not intentionally miss.  So, with my dislike for Carey as a host in the back of my mind, I gave him another shot.

After the first contestant blatantly overbid, all the second guy had to do was bid a dollar and walk away with a new boat, ATV, and dining room set.  But no.  He bid $24,000.  Great move.  Especially when the showcase was worth just over $22,oo0.  Just like that, both contestants lost out.

How did Drew handle this unfortunate ending?  Awakwardly.  Like a dejected kid who just had his lunch stolen, he said, “A double over bid.  You guys just bummed me out (pauses 3 seconds, then tries to recover). You each won $1,000 in the spin-off . . . that was cool.  And we gave away a camcorder, a car.”

I don’t know what I was expecting overall- maybe no one will be able to live up to the lofty status that Bob achieved as host.  Maybe I’m being too hard on Drew.   Maybe I should realize that The Price is Right is made for people three times my age.

Maybe this picture should never have been taken.

Remember to have your pets spayed or neutered . . .

Please remember to have your pets spayed or neutered . . .

Johnny Utah: 1, Johnny Montana: 0

In Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood on March 25, 2009 at 7:25 pm

Saved by the Bell was, and is, awesome.  Granted, it is also awesomely bad.  Never before or since have characters been so typecast, stereotypes so liberally exaggerated, or plots so ludicrous.  With the Tori Paradox fresh on my mind, I couldn’t help but start to think about some of the other absurdities the show presented.  Screech’s talking robot, Kevin, who not only had the ability to speak, but also had human emotions.  The fact that Slater wore a jersey and/or something acid washed 78% of time time.  Zack’s ability to pause time in order to address the camera or, in one case, avoid a punch.  He could also smooth talk his way out of most any situation, and I suppose if he could escape his way out of detention by getting Mr.  Belding to voluntarily eat chocolate covered grasshoppers, he could charm his way into Yale.  But he could not score a 1502 on his SATs.  It’s mathematically impossible.

Hey hey hey hey WHAT IS GOING ON HERE? - Mr. Belding

"Hey hey hey hey WHAT is going on here?" - Mr. Belding

A recent comment by the Los Man piqued my interest about the order of events in the world of Bayside (though I disagree with him that Zack was interested in Tori for sex.  She presented a challenge.  Also, there was no sex in Bayside.  Only kissing, during which an invisible audience would invariably “whooooooooooooooooo!”).  I was floored to see that in 1991, the show aired back to back on Saturdays.  The first episode of the day would be set at Bayside, leading into the second which would center around the gang’s activities at Malibu Sands, the club owned by Mr. Carosi.

Also, by finally looking into the original airdate of the each show, I was able to end, once and for all, the age old “Johnny State Name” debate.  Who came first: Johnny Utah, the ex Ohio State QB turned F-Beee-Eyeee AGENT, played by Keanu Reeves in Point Break?  Or the teen star Johnny Dakota, who burst onto the Bayside scene in order to film an anti-drug commercial, only for Zack and the gang to discover that he puffed the magic dragon himself?

As I always expected, Saved by the Bell appears to have taken a page from the Ohio State Buckeye playbook, as that episode aired on November 30, 1991, some 5 months after July 12 premiere of Point Break. Was Saved by the Bell taped before the movie’s premiere?  We may never know (I can’t find it on the internet), but one thing is for sure: Johnny Utah was one radical son of a gun.  Johnny Montana was not.

They only live life to get radical.

They only live life to get radical.



Update: 3,333rd viewer is anonymous presumed awesome (APA), and MaineCoast12 looks to Chuck Klosterman for answers about Bayside

In Come on!, Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood on March 22, 2009 at 11:24 pm

If you happened to be reading JSF on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, between 4:45 and 5 pm, there is a chance that you may have unknowingly hit the jackpot of luck.  Around that time, the 3,333rd viewer visited the site, earning the right to all the good luck that will surely follow this person like a tail, the massive shout-out, my undying adoration, etc, etc.

In heartbreaking fashion, two of the more serious cases of the Fever came close- Uncle Mike logged in at 3,229, while Joe Sarge was moments too late at 3,334.  Both deserve shout-outs, but the rules were the rules.  Only for 3,333.  So, sadly enough, we will have to wait around for 33,333.  I will be praying that THAT person will actually realize it.  FYI: We’re now at 3,585, so only 29,748 more readers necessary.  Also FYI: that could be a while.  At the current rate at which the Fever is spreading, the number will be reached on approximately August 4, 2011.

More importantly, mentioning Tori replacing Kelly on Saved by the Bell aroused the interest of one MaineCoast12, and I’m happy to report that this issue has been studied and reported on by one of the great minds of our generation, Chuck Klosterman.  In his fantastic book Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs: A Low Culture Manifesto, Klosterman expounds upon MaineCoast12’s very question, terming the replacement as “The Tori Paradox.”

The Tori Paradox refers to the show’s last season in 1993.  NBC, the network airing Saved by the Bell, ordered a 13 show final season, with the final show consisting of the six main character’s graduation.  After the season had been shot, NBC ordered more episodes, but the Elizabeth Berkeley (Jessie Spano) and Tiffani-Amber Thiessen (Kelly) refused to sign new contracts (stardom as a flashdancer in Vegas and a switch of zip codes to 90210 beckoned).

Instead of just moving on with Lisa, Screech, Zack and Slater, the show’s writers introduced a new character, Tori, to fill the void left by two of the three female characters.  The Tori Paradox, of course, refers to the fact that Jessie and Kelly’s disappearances are never explained, nor is it made clear by Tori shows up.  To make matters more complicated, the show’s final episode was the graduation episode, in which Jessie and Kelly are back.

The lack of commitment to the story from Jessie and Kelly is shocking.  You’re telling me that they could have witnessed heroic performances like Samuel “Screech” Powers inventing a new dance fad, “The Crutch,” to compensate for Lisa’s injury during a dance competition at The Max, and you can’t even finish out the final season?  Come on!

Head Cheerleader + Grade Grubber = Biker Chick (Bayside Class of '93)

Head Cheerleader + Grade Grubber = Biker Chick (Bayside Class of '93)

Emmitt Smith + Leonardo DiCaprio + 1996 styles = MAGIC

In Just absolutely dominating people, Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood on March 6, 2009 at 12:45 am

As I couldn’t find a single person who wanted to go to Hoboken to see Maps & Atlases with me tonight, I instead settled in for what turned out to be a glorious night of being productive watching TV.  True, I could have gone out and been social, but a comfortable couch and Michael Scott beckoned.  And all the popsicles I wanted to eat.  Not going to lie, the popsicles were a major selling point.

After a double dose of humor from Steve Carrell and Tina Fey, I decided to venture into the land of cable.  As I scholar, I obviously levitated (the use of that word is what we like to call foreshadowing) to TLC to learn something.  I fell for the name and was full of big expectations.  Sadly, I did not learn anything.  Because besides a ninja and a pro baseball player, there are few things I would rather be than a magician.  But I did not learn magic by watching David Blaine: Street Magic.  In fact, I am more confused.  Mostly by the laws of physics, like how old DB can levitate, how he can pull off insane sleight of hand tricks and my personal favorite, throw a deck of cards against a glass wall and have the card that an unsuspecting woman had secretly picked just moments ago stick to the inside of the window!  It boggles the mind.

What is also mind boggling is that it is probably the seventh or eighth time I have seen this very special.  It is classic David Blaine before he became a weird guy who hangs upside down for days or freezes himelf in a block of ice rather than just sticking to cunning card tricks like his street magic.  And that’s not to mention the hour long program’s spectacular cameos.

Instead of just jumping right into magic without the proper amount of foreplay, the special begins with an interview with Blaine, humanizing him before he makes you think he is supernatural.  The interviewer?  A young Leonardo DiCaprio, somewhere between being an adopted Seaver on Growing Pains and being your favorite and mine, Jack Dawson, who steals a woman’s heart away from Billy Zane, which is no easy feat indeed.  Filmed in 1996 (thanks imdb), it also features David Blaine pulling various shenanigans of the magic variety on some of the most popular NFL players of the time: Deion Sanders, Emmitt Smith and the rest of America’s Team, the Dallas Cowboys.

Now this was 1996, and Emmitt Smith was at the peak of his stardom.  His outfit reeked of both flamboyant awesomeness and the 90s.  Beige vest and matching pants? Check.  Gold earrings, chain and bracelet? Check.  A cell phone tucked into the front of his pants?  Check.  Timbs on his toes, and this is how it goes playas.

The result of google imaging "Emmitt Smith flamboyant"

Emmitt Smith on Dancing With the Stars apparently bringing down the house with the Carlton Banks

But like all good things, with one last levitation, the special soon ended.  Until next time David, young Leo and flamboyant Emmitt.  I will miss you, but for now it’s time to head over to IFC to watch the end of a classic, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go on an overnight drunk, and in 10 days I’m going to set out to find the shark that ate my friend and destroy it.  Anyone who wants to tag along is more than welcome.

Jack Bauer, Barney Stinson and Bob Barker: True American Heroes

In Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood on February 8, 2009 at 2:05 pm

Whenever you find a random roommate on craigslist, there are always risks for all parties involved.  Like maybe they don’t clean up after themselves or don’t do the dishes.  Or maybe they have a super annoying habit they somehow suppressed during the initial meeting and lease signing.  Of course, you could end up with someone whose idea of a wild night is having the boys over to the apartment for a rousing game of Magic: The Gathering.  Or worse, they could kill you in your sleep.

So far, after almost 6 months, I can report that random craigslist Jack has worked out well to quite well.  He’s introduced me to new things that have become mass media staples in my life.  Girl Talk dance parties.   Blu-ray movies on his PS3.  American Idol (ok, that one’s not so much a staple in my life.  Although the new judge is pretty cute).  The Sweet Wizard Band (his band with college friends that only have concerts in our apartment between the hours of midnight and 5am).

But the most important contribution he has made, without a doubt, is getting me addicted to 24.  Yes, I realize this is the 7th season of the show, and the critics, not to mention countless friends, have loved it from the start.  I missed the boat when the show first came out while I was in college, and have found various excuses not to watch it since.  But because Jack is a fan, my Monday nights have improved dramatically.  First, from 8:30-9, the best sitcom on TV right now, How I Met Your Mother, transports me to a version of New York where everyone is gorgeous, well dressed and ridiculously funny.  Wait, I just described my apartment.

We're so classy.  And hilarious.

We're so classy. And hilarious.

This is a great prelude to watching Jack Bauer absolutely dominate and attempt to save the free world.  Right now, he is single-handedly protecting both America and Sangala.  While I don’t have any previous seasons to compare it to (though Jack does have all previous seasons on dvd, so I anticipate a hardcore 24 binge in my future), the action is pretty fast and furious.  And extremely satisfying.

During an episode a few weeks ago, however, I was hit with a deep depression while watching Bauer save approximately 100,000 Sangalians between the hours of 11am and 12 noon.  The feeling of despair did not come from comparing what I would ideally be doing during that timeframe to what the great Jack Bauer did.   Obviously, I would want to be watching The Price is Right.  What got me depressed is the fact that this will never happen again.

Jack Bauer may be able to save the world, and he may be able to do it outside the law, but he cannot force me to watch Drew Carey host The Price is Right. Watching Carey host the show is kind of like witnessing the ridiculously socially awkward kid try to ask a girl to dance back in 7th grade.  I used to be a hardcore Price is Right fan, but Carey has killed the show for me.  I once saw a women guess the exact price of a car, and his reaction was about as enthusiastic as if he had just found a $1 bill in his jacket pocket.

Bob Barker, on the other hand, would have not only celebrated with the woman, he would have let her kiss him on the cheek (arguably a better prize than a new car).

The Price is WRONG, bitch

Man, I'm sweet

Uncle Jesse could outplay any of the guys on Tool Academy even if he shaved off his mullet

In Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood on January 24, 2009 at 6:26 pm

Before he married Aunt Becky, Uncle Jesse was what you would call a player.  There is an ad in magazines for Canadian Club right now that says before he met your mother, your dad got two numbers in one night.  Apparently this is supposed to be impressive.  And maybe it was in the early 70s, or whenever those ads are supposed to be based in, but it was not in Uncle Jesse’s prime.  Uncle Jesse could get two numbers in a room just by leaning against the wall and putting out the vibe.  Your dad may have drank Canadian Club whiskey, but he was no match for the charisma, mullet and leather jacket of Uncle Jesse.

One Friday night while out in San Francisco, Uncle Jesse got the numbers of 77 beautiful women, 43 of which he would later bed.  The other 34 were denied access to unspeakable pleasure because either: a) they were only hot enough to give Jesse their number, not sleep with him b) they didn’t like Elvis or c) there are only so many days on the calendar.  It wasn’t too hard for him, as Uncle Jesse Syndrome is a precursor to John Stamos Fever.

FR?  Freaking Radical

FR? Freaking Radical

Once he met Aunt Becky, however, Jesse burned his black book (though he was offered $500 from Joey Gladstone for it).  His playing days were over.  He had a girlfriend, and he had a responsibility.  This example of a reformed player was obviously the inspiration for the new Vh1 new show Tool Academy.

The premise of the show is both amusing and baffling.  Eight guys thought that they were going to be in a competition to crown “Mr. Awesome,” a title that apparently these fools didn’t know has already been awarded to John Stamos by me.   And everyone knows there can only be one Mr. Awesome in this country.

Anyway, Vh1 flips the switch on these guys, and they are actually enrolled in the Tool Academy.  What’s better is that their girlfriends see all of their audition tapes, and hidden camera footage of their boyfriends flirting with, getting nujmbers from and even kissing, other girls.  So you have 8 couples, the guys just getting completely exposed for being huge tools, and then their girlfriends come out, causing all sorts of shenanigans to occur.  Whichever guy makes the greatest strides to change from tool to cool passes the Tool Academy wins $100,000.

On an episode I watched this morning, one of the douchiest guys on the show, Sean (ironically, the vast majority of people in the world with this name are unspeakably sweet), is trying to win back the trust of his girlfriend, Jaimee.  He’s vowing to change, really selling himself as someone who will be a good boyfriend.  Of course, this is the cue in the script for a blonde in the sluttiest short shorts I have ever seen to walk in the room and announce herself as Aida, Sean’s gilfriend of six years.  Sean is of course shocked, and while he has feelings for both girls, is forced to choose one to stay on the show (he keeps the six year streak going and picks Aida).

I kind of hate myself for watching this show, but I can’t get enough.  It’s totally fake (while dumb, I’m sure these guys understand the concept of TV and how their girlfriends would eventually see what they happened, when the show aired), and the guys are all ridiculous meatheads.  The girls all look like the type who, while somewhat hot now, will eventually progress to a forty year old woman with two kids, no money, sagging boobs and a rocking fupa that she accents with the tightest pink Juicy sweatsuedos available.  The whole point of the show should be these couples getting counseling on how to ensure they never procreate.

I’m so excited! I’m so, so scared!

In Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood on January 3, 2009 at 4:24 pm

The following is directly quoted from perhaps my proudest achievement in life: a Facebook group I created back in the fall of 2004 while a senior in college.  Now, I agree that it is kind of sad that the proudest achievement of my life thus far is to create a group that a mere 78 Bowdoin College students are now members of, but this was before Facebook broke down the barriers and let people from other different schools join the same groups.  The group, “I’m So Excited… I’m So Excited… I’m So… So… So Scared,” spread through Facebook like the Fever, with tribute groups quickly popping up at schools like Brown and Michigan, among others.

To get in the mood, take a moment and watch an abbreviated version of the scene again: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ljtuGoIIKGs.

“This group is for anyone and everyone who, thanks to Jessie Spano, now knows the danger of caffeine pills. You have seen their devastating effects, how they can cause someone to black out for hours, completely forget they took Dewey’s midterm, and miss a crucial performance of their band, Hot Sundae, that night at the MAX. You, like millions of other Americans, witnessed one of the greatest moments in television, nay, world history, when Jessie, in a caffeine induced rage, sang/screamed those famous words and collapsed into Zack’s arms. No, Hot Sundae never made it big. But millions of teenagers learned never to trust caffeine pills. After all, pot and whip its are much safer. Thanks to Zack, Jessie’s life was back on track… for a while. Until she bombed her SAT’s and her worst fears came true, as she was rejected by Stanford. She was last seen trying to make ends meet by stripping in Vegas. And it all started with those pills.”