Captain Hammer!!! "Have a friend that excels at math and science? Report him!"
30 June 2008
The Museum of the Moving Image got an awesome gift from some serious fans of Babylon 5.
Eleven fans of the epic science-fiction television series Babylon 5 —all previously unknown to one another, and living in places from Washington State to England—purchased a pristine prosthetic mask used on the show and donated it to Museum of the Moving Image. Worn by actor Andreas Katsulas in his role as the exiled alien ambassador G’Kar, the mask had been put up for auction on eBay. The donors pooled their resources to purchase it and then gave it as a gift to the Museum, so that the mask would be accessible to fans and to the general public.The museum galleries and theater are closed for a major renovation right now, scheduled to open in the winter of 2009-10, but they've still got some interesting shows going on over the next few months at outside spaces.
28 June 2008
Two-and-a-half weeks, baby! Straight from the Joss's mouth.
ONE WEEK ONLY! AN INTERNET MINISERIES EVENT!
"Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog" will be streamed, LIVE (that part’s not true), FREE (sadly, that part is) right on Drhorrible.com, in mid-July. Specifically:
ACT ONE (Wheee!) will go up Tuesday July 15th.
ACT TWO (OMG!) will go up Thursday July 17th.
ACT THREE (Denouement!) will go up Saturday July 19th.
All acts will stay up until midnight Sunday July 20th. Then they will vanish into the night, like a phantom (but not THE Phantom – that’s still playing. Like, everywhere.)
27 June 2008
There's video above, FeedReader. Via Becks.
Doogie knows doctorin'. And apparently Doogie knows odor prevention.
Hehehehe. Back in May, I posted a link to a Flickr version of the classic George Crane "Tests for Husbands and Wives". Well, someone's done that one better and turned the hard to read pages of the scans into an Internet test! So, how do you rate? Let me know in comments.
As a 1930s husband, I am
(A gray, grimy interrogation room. One table, two chairs, harsh fluorescents. MARVIN HENDERSON sits nervously opposite DET. JASON DETWILER.)
It's not fair.
Life's not fair, Henderson.
I need guarantees.
Guarantees? Haven't you figured out from all of this that there are no guarantees in this life? Or the next?
He'll kill me. You've got to protect me.
Witness protection? You give us what we need and testify against that sonuvabitch and we'll talk.
I'm just an accountant!
And I'm just losing my patience, Henderson. Spill.
(Sighs deeply) Okay. At first, I just thought it was an error in the numbers. Doesn't happen much, I make sure of that, but once in a while a mistake creeps in and sticks around. So I started tracking it back. It took me a while - he's got books going back forever - but once I found it, things started falling into place.
Found what? Spell it out.
I should have realized. 144K isn't that much. I mean, there's billions of people, right? Why only 144,000? Why is that his magic number?
You tell me.
It's timeshares. He bought up some swampland in the Everglades and drained it, put in condos, a little town, a man-made lake. A whole, self-contained little community. 2000 units, some one bedroom, some two. Week-long shares. You see, it's not really 144K. That's just approximate. Could be more, could be less.
Heaven is a timeshare in Florida.
Sounds more like hell.
His old accountant was clever, but he couldn't hide the payments. The boss had to grease a lot of palms to get that through. Plus, he had to pay off the masons.
No, the Freemasons. They wanted a piece of his action, and Jehovah didn't want to start a war. He was trying to fly under the radar.
This is good stuff, Henderson, but I don't know if it's enough to nail him. You've got to give us more.
I've got more. He's been skimming money off the top for years. His kid doesn't even know, not that he'd do anything about it but pout anyway. It took me a month of going through the books, line by line but I caught it. You see, once you know what to ask, the answers can be found in his books.
You know the X Prize?
Big fund to build a private spaceship. Ten mill.
What's that got to do with your boss?
It's him. He's the guy behind it.
What does god need with a starship?
Nothing. He's been using it as a tax shelter. An illegal tax shelter.
We've got him!
Tell me Henderson, why? Why did you turn against him?
My wife died last year. Cancer. I asked him why. "Why, Lord? Why did you take her?" He just sat there and said nothing. Bastard.
(A small, neatly furnished living room. Marvin and MARIE sit next to each other on a couch. Marvin's hair color has been changed and he looks a few years older.)
Ben, honey? I'm going to get a beer. You want one?
Sure, that'd be great.
(Marie gets up and starts to head to the kitchen. The doorbell rings...)
I'll get it.
(Marie crosses and opens the front door. A bright shaft of sunlight streams in through the opening. As the visitor speaks, Marvin's expression changes from neutrality to abject terror.)
Have you heard the good word?
26 June 2008
New post up at Pop Critics. I accidentally bumped into a pre-air of the pilot for TNT's Leverage. Go read my spoiler-free take.
This is going to be one of the best new shows of the 2008/2009 season and you don't want to miss it when it premieres in December.
24 June 2008
Teaser from Bad Horse on Vimeo.
There's video above, FeedReader
Frankly, there's not much I can say about this. Either you care that NPH, Nathan Fillion, Lord Joss, and a bunch of the Whedon stable made an Internet musical about an evil genius/supervillain or you don't. I pity those who fall in the latter camp! ;)
There's video above, FeedReader
In case you didn't know or couldn't guess, I'm a wine snob. Add that to my love of quirky comedies with large, talented casts, and this movie's a no-brainer. Looks great.
22 June 2008
Wow. I'm a misanthrope prone to finding things like this annoying, but instead I enjoyed the hell out of it. I laughed out loud four, five times and thought a few of the juxtapositions were worth every penny it cost to make.
Seriously, watch Matt dance all over the world.
21 June 2008
It's been four long weeks since the last Sketch War summary, but that doesn't mean there haven't been some good sketches in the interim (and one very obscure one last week, sorry.) But this week we're back at normal strength with a three-man knock-down drag-out donnybrook! So let's get to it.
- David fired the first shot with the deadly accuracy of an action movie superstar...
- Coyote retaliated by unloading the clip of his service revolver, and curing cancer as an afterthought...
- Michael might be back from his honeymoon, but his mind and sundry body parts remain behind.
If you think you've got the chops to join in our weekly merriment, send a link of your funniest work to sketchwar at dreamloom dot com.
20 June 2008
(Harold and Debbie sit in their car, strobing blue and red lights shining through the rear window making clear their plight. At the wheel, Harold looks forlorn, Debbie irritated.)
RADIO ANNOUNCER (O.S.)
...come on in to Spiedermann's Metal Gazebos. With every great bower comes great bronze stability!
Turn that off!
(Harold kills the radio. A trooper strides to the window in full regalia. His boots a-gleam and his hat brim arrow-straight, Dudley Do-Right's got nothing on him.)
License and registration, please.
(He examines the provided materials for a moment.)
Do you know why I pulled you over this evening, folks?
I sure don't, officer.
Harold! Don't be difficult. You know what you were doing. Tell the nice man.
I suppose I might have been just a smidge over the speed limit back there. Sorry, officer. I was just keeping pace, you know. And yes, I know that's wrong.
Speeding, huh? Didn't notice that. Let me get that down. Just how fast do you think you were going, Mr. Renshaw?
Oh, I wouldn't say more than a couple of miles over...maybe six?
Ten. Okay, I was going ten over. I'm real sorry.
Ten. I should probably write you up for that.
(The Trooper pulls out his ticket pad and gets poised to write.)
You know, that's actually not why I pulled you over this evening, Harold. Do you mind if I call you Harold?
What else did you do, Harold?
Now ma'am, don't get too mad at Harold. It's not what he did, but what I can do for you. Folks, I pulled you over tonight to talk about Prickly Pear Products. Are you familiar with the healing power of prickly pears?
Are you giving him a ticket or not?
Well ma'am, that depends. You see, I'm a distributor for 3-P, that's what we call Prickly Pear Products, and I'd like to ask whether I can interest you in making hundreds of extra dollars a month with just a few hours of work. Our products practically sell themselves. From hair care to health care, soap to supplements, prickly pear pulp can change the way you live.
Did you know that before the white man arrived, the native Americans of the Southwest never got cancer?
I really don't think we're inter...wait. That can't be right. You're saying they never got cancer? And you expect us to believe that?
(The Trooper looks at Harold and Debbie for a second, then raises his pen to the ticket.)
No sir. I suppose I don't. You said fifteen miles over the limit, correct? You know in this state that's considered reckless. I think you should step out of the car.
I said ten! Ten!
Excuse me. Officer? I was wondering if there were any other uses for prickly pears. It all sounds so fascinating. Doesn't it Harold?
I'm glad you asked. My product display case is in the trunk of my patrol car if you'd like to take a look, folks. Don't mind the man in the back seat. He's harmless.
19 June 2008
I can finally provide one, concrete reason I really do like Twitter.
June 19, 2008 -- Dice-size crumbs of bright material have vanished from inside a trench where they were photographed by NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander four days ago, convincing scientists that the material was frozen water that vaporized after digging exposed it.I saw that news almost immediately after it was posted because I follow MarsPhoenix. Of course, I then saw it several more times as people re-tweeted the incredible (though tentative) discovery.
Of course, I also knew when Matt Fraction went to take a leak last night, so it's not all earth-shattering information.
I've got a new piece up at Pop Critics on SciFi's recent decision to reschedule Charlie Jade in the ever-popular Monday 3am slot.
I can’t be too upset by this. Clearly the show was underperforming on Friday nights and the programming wizards at SciFi needed to move it. What impresses me is the depth of analysis they performed to figure out its new home. Who knew Charlie Jade did so well with insomniacs and people who buy Flowbies?Mostly, I discuss what SciFi did wrong and why they might have done some of that intentionally. I also prognosticate on the future of that channel and the future of science fiction on television.
Please click over and read and comment. If you're a social networking type, go ahead and forward that link to your friends, Digg it, Stumble it, etc.
17 June 2008
There's video above, FeedReader, via Joshua James
Honestly, have you *seen* Cindy McCain? Is it any wonder he'd call her that? I think it fails to do her justice. Not nearly a bad enough word. Do we have a better one?
Release your goddamn tax filings, you...well, you know.
16 June 2008
Lawyers from the AP cried like little bitches this past weekend and told Drudge Retort to take down "seven items that contained quotations from A.P. articles ranging from 39 to 79 words." Wah, wah, wah. You stole my words. I mean, you didn't plagiarize, and you included links to the articles, but wah, wah wah!
This piece in the Times (who are NOT a bunch of whiny bitches and therefore probably won't complain that I've quoted Saul Hansell's article) says the AP has slightly backed off of their earlier position, hoping to set guidelines on quoting. But don't think it'll be easy. I mean, those AP writers know how to distill:
“It’s hard to see how the Drudge Retort ‘first few lines’ is a substitute for the story,” Mr. Wu said.The AP should probably be careful what they say. If I were a managing editor of a newspaper, I'd be asking why I have to pay so much for print rights when one or two sentences is all that matter. I'd start demanding massive discounts.
Mr. Kennedy argued, however, that The Associated Press believes that in some cases, the essence of an article can be encapsulated in very few words.
14 June 2008
There's video above, FeedReader. Via Becks.
Posted by R.A. Porter at 11:34 AM
Okay. I realize I overreached so far on yesterday's sketch that it appears I've had a stroke. To assure you all, the ASPBV (American Society for the Protection of Blood Vessels) monitored the writing of that sketch and no blood vessels were injured in the production.
So here's a quick legend:
- The patient is named Jim Halpert. If you don't know, he's a character on the American version of The Office. If you watch, you might remember this prank.
- Bears. Beets. Battlestar Galactica.
- The second man is Bear McCreary. That's two 'bears'. I specifically chose McCreary as the second Bear because he is the composer for BSG. Also writes a great blog on the process, here.
- I should have been clearer about the soup that looks like blood. It's borscht. That's the 'beets'.
- When Edward James Olmos shows up, that's the explicit BSG reference.
- No next appointment for the patient until 2009 because last night was BSG's season finale.
- One more throwaway joke: McCreary was wearing a yellow smiley face and spilled borscht on it. That joke will make a lot more sense to a lot more people in 2009, but if you've read The Watchmen, you should get it.
Oh well. Next week will be better.
Okay. Same as last time, but not. After a long-ish beta tryout of ID last fall and winter, I gave up and went back to Blogger comments. A big part of the reason I'd gone back was the addition of the ability to subscribe to the comments on a post through email. That's a nice, big piece.
But I still missed the voting, threaded comments, and more community/social aspects of the commenting system.
Pop Critics recently switched over to Disqus and I've been watching that for a week now. It's actually missing a feature I'd like, but it has a lot of nice ones to almost make up for that. After interacting with it as a user, I decided I liked it well enough to give it a trial run here.
So, let me know what you think. Worth it, not worth it?
And yes. I know. There aren't that many comments around here. But I blame all y'all for that. ;)
13 June 2008
Okay, this one's an odd egg. There are several jokes buried in here, but they're targeted to specific audiences. I figure you either don't get this at all, get pieces, or get everything. This might be my most layered piece yet. Now, whether it's funny or not...
David has already posted his piece for the week, an excellent one at that. He completely nailed his character's voice. Michael's on his honeymoon, so if a sketch shows up I'm going to be a bit concerned about the marriage! As for Red, she's going to be out of the game for the next month or so as she lives the exciting life of a WSOP dealer. Poker, free drinks, and a salary. Not a bad gig.
As always, we welcome - nay, beg - others to join in the sketch war games. Just email your piece or a link to your piece to sketchwar_at_dreamloom.com.
The Three Bees
(Jim lies on a couch. He wears shirt and tie, stylishly loose. His hair is a mop that says "I don't care how it looks" but in reality takes thirty minutes and much product to achieve. Seated in a chair behind him taking notes is Dr. Josefs, a 50-something man in a cardigan. A very traditional Freudian.)
How are you today, Jim?
Okay. A little anxious...I had that dream again last night.
Tell me about it.
I've told you about it before. It's the same, every time. Nothing ever changes.
I know, but this is a process. Talk it through. Tell me about the dream.
Okay. (Deep sigh)
(As Jim starts to speak, the lights go down on the doctor's office and come up on the scene he's describing.)
I'm sitting at a table in an old-style nightclub. It's late, maybe after hours, and there are only a few people left. This one table is right in front of me. There are two men - one in a white dinner jacket and dress shirt with his bow tie undone, the other has his jacket and tie completely off and draped over the chair. Oh, the guy with the jacket, he's got a button on the lapel. A yellow smiley face button.
What are the men doing?
They're talking to each other and laughing, but I can't hear them. All I hear is the sounds of tables being bussed.
Do you recognize these men?
Same two as always. The one with his jacket still on is a musician I saw perform once. McCreary, something. The other one is that guy who hosts "Man vs. Wild". That Bear Grylls guy. He starts gesturing pretty wildly, pointing and waving his hands for emphasis. The McCreary guy just shakes his head no during the rant.
(The men in the dream freeze and the lights dim to half-power. Then they come back up on the therapist's office.)
And you can't tell what they're talking about?
Nope. I try. Everytime I have the dream I try to hear them, or read their lips or something. Doc, it's happening more often. I've had it three times this week alone. I wake up sweating and shaking. What is it?
I don't know. But we'll figure it out. What else happens?
I've told you! I've told you at least ten times already. I've been having this dream for months!
I know, Jim. But we're getting close to a breakthrough, I'm sure of it. What happens next?
(Jim settles down and breathes deeply to calm himself. The lights go down again and they come up on the club scene. The men unfreeze.)
They finish their argument and then a carhop comes to the table with a tray.
One of those girls on rollerskates they used to have at drive-in burger places. She doesn't have on much, but it all sparkles. It's like she got in a fight with a Bedazzler and lost.
What's on the tray?
Two bowls and a big jar.
Yeah. The bowls are empty. She puts them in front of the guys and then opens the jar and pours it into the bowls. It's thick and red. Looks like blood.
Do the men eat it?
Yeah. Like they're starving. She rolls away and they're already bent over the bowls. They're ravenous. After a minute, they put down the spoons. They just pick up the bowls and drink, gulping down the soup. The one guy, McCreary, he spills a little on his shirt. Gets some on his smiley button, too. Then they turn right to me, both of them staring at me.
What do you think they want?
I don't know. I can't tell. Their expressions are blank. The wilderness guy, he raises his arm and points at me, and then I wake up.
(Blackout on the nightclub scene. Lights back up on the therapist's office.)
Doc, I can't take it any more. What's it all mean?
(Dr. Josefs looks at his notes, jots a few more down. Doesn't say anything for a few seconds. It feels like an eternity.)
Jim, how are things at work?
At work? They're fine. Same as usual.
(Dr. Josefs jots a few more notes. From the darkness where the nightclub sits a man walks out. It's Edward James Olmos, wearing a tuxedo. He walks right up to the couch while Dr. Josefs scribbles, not noticing.)
Your table is ready, sir.
(Smash cut to the same exact scene, but Olmos is gone. Jim opens his eyes with a start and gasps.)
I saw him. He was right here.
The maitre'd. But it wasn't...it was that guy from "Miami Vice".
Don Johnson? Don Johnson was the maitre'd?
No. Not him.
Tubbs? You dreamt about Tubbs? This is more serious than I realized. We'll need to--
--no. Not him either. The lieutenant. What was his name?
(Dr. Josefs scratches a few peremptory notes and puts down his pen.)
Jim, I think I understand what's been bothering you--
--What is it, doc?--
--but, we're out of time today.
(Dr. Josefs presses a button on his intercom and speaks into it.)
Mary? Could you please schedule another appointment for Mr. Halpert. Sometime in 2009 would be fine.
12 June 2008
There's video above, FeedReader
Yesterday, someone commenting on last week's BSG thread at Sepinwall's blog posted a link to the Old 97s video above. Then a little while ago, friend-of-the-blog Sarah sent me another link to it. I figured the world wanted...
- ...me to watch it several times - ✓
- ...me to become an Old 97s fan - ✓
- ...me to link the damn video for y'all - ✓
You know, you hang out here for a time and you might forget my job isn't posting silly videos, trailers for upcoming movies, and my little attempts at writin'. Until I get my big break and land a job as a staff writer on The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, I'm still a software engineer.
Once upon a time, I used to write real software. Now, in the Valley of the Old, not so much. In fact, I've been spending the last day or two in a PHP environment. You can't get much further from real software than PHP. What an abortion of a language and deployment platform that is. But back in the day, I wrote the real stuff. And I cut my teeth at WebLogic, back when it was Bob and Paul running the show and purple shirts were a job requirement.
Considering I didn't stay around long, I still made a pretty penny when BEA bought WL. Then I watched from afar as everyone fought to make it to full vesting before abandoning ship.
The Oracle/BEA deal is closed and Oracle's announced the products that survive and their branding. And here's Bob's take:
With this widely expected move crowning WebLogic Application Server as Oracle’s go-forward appserver product, while “continuing to support” (shorthand for “silently kill”; see “PeopleSoft” and “Seibel”) every other revenue-generating product, Oracle tells us what we already knew from its last 8 years of near-stagnant revenue numbers : BEA couldn’t develop a product from scratch to save its life (literally).
09 June 2008
There's video above, FeedReader
Here's a trailer for a bland and predictable indie documentary. Sure, the critics lurve it, and it was a Sundance Official Selection. So what?
If the concept seems interesting, I'd suggest you'd be better served watching the very small, very overlooked romcom Seven Girlfriends starring Tim Daly. Less grungy loser and more voice of Superman.
06 June 2008
My recap of the Charlie Jade pilot is up at Pop Critics.
Check it out if you caught the show. If you did *not* watch Charlie Jade, check the SciFi website for a replay. You'll thank me.
A reprint From the Archives!!! (Imagine a baritone announcer with a lingering echo for that line.)
Waves of the brave and the bold
I fear I may be alone again this week, folks. Michael's nuptials are here (if you've enjoyed his sketches in the past like I have, you should go on over and wish him and the bride luck) and David's been up against a wall at work for a long while now. This might be a one-man war band.
Imagine indeed, Mr. Lennon.
Bob's Knob Spot
(Bob, in his 50s and portly, stands front and center by the register of a cramped store. At the register is Mabel who may be in her 50s or may be in her 90s; it's hard to tell. Behind them are tightly packed aisles filled with doorknobs. At point of sale are more doorknobs.)
Hi folks. Bob Pushkin at Bob's Knob Spot here to tell you about this week's deals. We've got a sale on all of last year's six-centimeter, seven-centimeter, and nine-centimeter cabinet knobs. Round ones, square ones, wood ones, metal ones. It doesn't matter, they've got to go. We've got to make room for the new models and have slashed our prices. Take this knob for example...
(Mabel hands Bob a small knob for a cabinet drawer.)
Regularly priced at 89 cents, we've cut the price to 67 cents! That's a savings of 25%! And it's not just the base models, either...
(Mabel hands Bob a small porcelain knob with a design painted on it.)
Take this Miller & Steen porcelain knob. Regularly $3.75, we've slashed the price to $2.50! Don't miss out!
And now it's time for this week's comparison shopper where Mabel and I go under cover around town and check out the prices at our competitors.
(Mabel hands Bob a blister pack containing a full knob and lock assembly for a door.)
I picked up this LockJaw doorknob at Stan's Hinges and Doors for $37.99. Our price: $35!
(Mabel hands Bob another packaged knob set.)
Mabel picked this one up just last night. It's a Knob Factory solid brass knob which we sell for $60. Mabel got this one at Beds, Knobs, and Broomsticks for $75. $75?! Don't pay the markup at these high-priced shops, folks!
(Mabel hands Bob another package.)
This Shmekl & Petsl knobset in brushed aluminum came from Home Depot and cost..
(Bob looks at the price...and then tosses the knob away.)
Forget that folks. The big boxes can't compete with our legendary service, anyway.
Bob's Knob Spot, at the Corner of the Sevens. Seventh street and Seventh avenue. Two miles south of the Expressway.
BOB AND MABEL
Come on in today and let us polish your knob!
05 June 2008
There's video above, FeedReader
A couple of weeks back, TV Squad reported on FX's actor-on-actor interviews for The Shield. If you're a fan of the show, you owe it to yourself to check these out.
When I looked the first time, only two sets of interviews were in place; today there are four. It's great to see actors expounding on both their craft and on their characters, and there are some great, emotional moments in here as well. Listening to Kenny Johnson tell the story of how he found out Lem was going to die was amazing. Enjoy them.
04 June 2008
I've posted a new Ficlet this evening, the second in my modern-day homage to Bertie and Jeeves. It is *hard* to ape P.G. Wodehouse in 1024-character chunks, but I'm giving it my best. Click and enjoy.
I know, I know. It looks like I'm not writing much 'cause I'm not blogging much. But I'm writing a lot, I swear.
Like my new review of Gerard Way's Umbrella Academy: Apocalypse Suite at Pop Critics.
This is all a long-winded way of saying, there are a lot of very bad comics out there and celebrity “writers” are some of the worst offenders.Follow the link to read the rest.
So when it was first announced that My Chemical Romance frontman Gerard Way was coming out with a book of his own, it was ignored by the comics cognoscenti. Just another rock star (literally) wanking off (not literally). It would get published, his screaming fans would buy it, and it would get tossed in the bin a few days later to be forgotten forever.
http://view.break.com/465843 - Watch more free videos
There's video above, FeedReader
I would pay big money to see this on a big screen instead of my computer. Action, thrills, intrigue, and stripes!!!
via Pop Critics