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Bullet Sunday 746

Posted on Sunday, January 9th, 2022

Dave!I'm still buried in snow, but Blogography will carry on... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Return! Okay... we already have a contender for Most Remarkable Story of 2022: Abducted son finds family by drawing map of village he last saw aged four. His hand-drawn map is remarkable considering is was made from memories of 30 years ago. And then there's another layer of remarkable coming from the fact that people were able to help him find his original village by looking at his map and remarkable because he was reunited with his mother...

Jenny waits for me to get off my Zoom call.

"Abducted in 1989, Li was sold to a family in Lankao, more than 1,100 miles away. Child abductions are common in China and Li was probably taken because the family wanted a boy."

   
• Aliens! A big surprise last television season was Alan Tudyk in Resident Alien. They really went for the jugular with the concept, which is based on a comic book series I liked. Now season two is imminent...

Looking forward to it, Dr. Vanderspeigle!

   
• Lara! I passed on the Tomb Raider reboot because it didn't get a terribly good reaction. But it was on sale a while back, so I bought it. Finally got around to watching it and I really liked the film! Some of the reviews I read said that the actor playing Lara was wooden and boring. And I'm like... did we watch the same movie? I thought she was excellent. Though... Angelina Jolie has this wry delivery with a hint of amusement that worked so well in her two Tomb Raider films. I just wish she had better stories to work with.

Tomb Raider Poster.

I hope that the sequel manages to get made! (UPDATE: Apparently it's in active development, COVID-willing, and will be titled Tomb Raider: Obsidian! Nice!

   
• Free Ride! Okay, this is pretty great...

My favorite part of visiting Costa Rica (after the natural beauty of the country) was the sloth sanctuary that we got to visit. They are such remarkable creatures.

   
• Hole of the Tiger! ZOMG! Lego made the Year of the Tiger piece anatomically correct! Kinda. Still a few things missing, but... nice! (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@hollyonfilm This LEGO Tiger is the best thing that will happen in 2022 don’t @ me #lego #yearofthetiger #legotiktok #newyear ♬ original sound - holly

And, yes, Survivor's Eye of the Tiger is playing through my head right now.

   
• Paid! Yesterday I needed to make bread because my sourdough starter hadn't been used in almost two weeks. But I forgot that I had used the last of my yeast last time. And while I could make sourdough bread without it, I didn't want this to be an all-day affair. Then something weird happens. I didn't think "I better make sure that I grab my wallet so I can pay"... instead I think "I better make sure that I grab my iPhone so I can pay with Apple Watch." And since Washington State hasn't done a damn thing to start implementing digital driver's licenses, THEN I think "I better make sure that I grab my wallet in case I get pulled over." I truly long for the day that I don't have to carry a wallet at all. But I'll probably have to move to a more forward-thinking state than mine so that's actually possible. Because knowing how utterly incompetent Washington State legislators are at moving anything forward except higher taxes... digital driver's licenses ain't happening here any time soon.

   
• COVID? Last Friday I was going to take a third COVID test just to make sure I wasn't carrying 'rona to Christmas (my previous two were negative)... but then I woke up that morning and smelled the horrendous dump that Jake took and figured I'm probably good. Though the smell was so bad that I'm guessing it could break through even COVID loss of smell! If anybody else wants tests, I've been ordering directly from iHealth Labs... which has a CDC-recommended antigen test available. They are running behind on orders right now (not surprising) but they do eventually come. Omicron may be "less bad" than Delta (except for young kids, apparently), but it is still causing hospitals to fill up (even in my local hospital, they're recording a rise in admissions), so it's nice to know if you should isolate. Fortunately data suggests that the vaxed adult population has been able to avoid hospitalization (for the most part) even though the current vaccine wasn't designed for it. Really, really hope that they offer up an Omicron Booster soon. That will better prepare our bodily defenses against what gets mutated into next (Lord help us).

   
And that's all the bullets I can muster this fine Sunday.

   

Peace to Die For

Posted on Thursday, January 13th, 2022

Dave!Despite having some of my favorite comic book characters, DC Comics totally shit the bed with their cinematic blunders. With the exception of Wonder Woman, I haven't really liked anything since Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy wrapped up. And before that only three movies were really worth anything (Superman, Superman II, and Batman). Everything else was pretty much shit.*

Until James Gunn's The Suicide Squad. It was big, bold, bloody, funny entertainment... that was pretty faithful to the idea of the comics. I enjoyed it quite a lot. James Gunn had once again taken a D-list super-group and turned them into something fun (just like he did with Guardians of the Galaxy before this).

But James Gunn wasn't finished.

As he was making The Suicide Squad, he saw potential in one of the more outlandish characters... Peacemaker. A man who wants peace so bad he's willing to fight and kill for it. And so he developed a television series for HBO Max featuring John Cena and some of the other cast from his movie.

The result is just insane. But incredibly funny and entertaining. I mean, just take a look at the opening credits...

And even that doesn't really prepare you for how off-the-wall bonkers the show is. I love it. It's deeper than you'd expect it would be. And from the first three episodes that got released, Gunn hasn't just done the Peacemaker justice... he really pulled out all the stops to make The Vigilante interesting as well. In the comics he's deadly serious with a tragic backstory. In this interpretation, he's just plain nuts.

If you have HBO Max, Peacemaker is worth a look. If you don't, it may be worth getting it for a month once all the episodes have been released. Just be warned that it's definitely Rated-R entertainment.

I hope it goes on for more than a single season.

   
*And I am not exaggerating. All too many of the DC movies have, in fact, been shitty. Or worse...

1966 — Batman: Campy fun, but shitty.
1978 — Superman: The dawn of modern super-hero movies.
1980 — Superman II: Fantastic super-hero escapism, despite being butchered.
1980 — Superman II (Richard Donner Cut): Mind-blowing followup to the original.
1982 — Swamp Thing: Bad.
1983 — Superman III: Horrible.
1984 — Supergirl: Horrible.
1987 — Superman IV: The Quest for Peace: Utter shit.
1989 — The Return of Swamp Thing: Bad.
1989 — Batman: Imaginative "Tim Burton" take on the character.
1992 — Batman Returns: Best Catwoman ever in a campy, bad script.
1995 — Batman Forever: Shitty.
1997 — Batman & Robin: More shitty.
1997 — Steel: Shitty.
2004 — Catwoman: Shitty.
2005 — Constantine: Decent, but not the Constantine from the comics.
2005 — Batman Begins: Terrific reboot and a faithful take.
2006 — Superman Returns: Sad rehash of the first Superman movie.
2008 — The Dark Knight: One of the best super-hero movies ever made.
2009 — Watchmen: Acceptable interpretation, but deviated too much from the book.
2010 — Jonah Hex: Shitty.
2011 — Green Lantern: Shitty.
2012 — The Dark Knight Rises: A good finale to the Nolan trilogy.
2013 — Man of Steel: Utter shit.
2016 — Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice: Beyond shitty.
2016 — Suicide Squad: Meandering mess.
2017 — Wonder Woman: Fantastic, but deviated from the mythology too much.
2017 — Justice League: Utter shit.
2018 — Aquaman: Acceptable, but not great.
2019 — Shazam!: Horrifically shitty.
2019 — Joker: Bad.
2020 — Birds of Prey: Acceptable, but not great.
2020 — Wonder Woman '84: Grotesquely shitty... one of the worst movies ever made.
2021 — The Suicide Squad: A fun-filled bloody adaptation that totally worked.

   

Bullet Sunday 747

Posted on Sunday, January 16th, 2022

Dave!New year, new surge in the pandemic. But some things never change... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Tokyo! I love major cities. They have a life to them... an excitement... that you can't find in rural areas (which I also like). One of the most fascinating cities to me is Tokyo, Japan. I've been six or seven times, and every time I feel very much at home. One of the best parts of Tokyo is the public transportation system. It's phenomenal... and very hard to explain because you have to experience it to understand it. This video gives it a try...

But the best way to experience Tokyo without visiting Tokyo? Watch the movie Lost in Translation. It always takes me back. I sure would like to visit again one day.

   
• Emoji! This website shows the relative scale of a bunch of emojis. It's pretty clever. If you visit, you have to scroll down for the show to start.

   
• W_RDLE! I've been playing Wordle for a few weeks. So far I've never lost, but I've yet to win in under four guesses either. I don't know if that makes me a success or failure at the game, but it's pretty much an essential morning activity while I wait for the cats' breakfast alarm to go off.

   
• Inexplicable Success! LOL. Robert Langdon would suck at Wordle. I’m happy that people are piling on The Da Vinci Code now. It pulled from far better books with a mediocre story that was inexplicably weird and dull at the same time...

I had hoped that the movie adaptation would elevate the material given that Tom Hanks was involved, but it just sunk the material further for me.

   
• Gemstone! One of the bigger surprises to come out of 2019's televisionscape was The Righteous Gemstones. It was a fascinating and hilarious look at a televangelist family with secrets threatening to tear them down. And now Season 02 has arrived with more temptation for HBO viewers...

The Righteous Gemstones Season 2 Poster

So far it's not really taking off like the first season, but I'm hopeful it's building to something. More than a few shows can't manage to recapture what made them great out of the gate.

   
• Hookup! Don't you hate it when a once good television show just keeps collapsing into a black hole of awfulness? The first season of Plan Couer (AKA The Hook Up Plan on Netflix) was great. Second season was not so great. Now the third season is absolutely horrific. Everybody has gone stupid. Elsa and her dumbass environmentalism crap that borders on insanity. Charlotte and her idiotic ignorance when it comes to money and... like... THE WORLD. Emilie and her rambling non-stop crazy. And I don't get it. WHAT HAPPENED?!? The people writing it thought "You know what? Smart romantic comedy is dead. Let's just throw everything that made the show good out the window and focus on nothing but shit, shit, and more stupid shit!" — So disappointing that this is how they're going out. I still like Maxime though. Oh well. It's the last season, so at least we won't be suffering even more in a fourth season.

   
And that's the end of bullets for me this Sunday.

   

Shoot for the Moon

Posted on Wednesday, January 19th, 2022

Dave!The only two heroes in Marvel Comics that I was invested in was Doctor Strange and Black Panther because DC Comics had nothing like them. As time went on and DC kept making bizarre creative choices, I slowly migrated some of my reading to Marvel, which had some very interesting things going on.

Enter Moon Knight.

The first I remember seeing him was in some reprint comic of a Spider-Man story (most likely Peter Parker The Spectacular Spider-Man #22). Or maybe it wasn't a reprint? I dunno. In any event, I bought the comic specifically because it had a very cool cover with Moon Knight on it. But I didn't become a true fan of the character until a series of backup stories by Bill Sienkiewicz. At the time I was a major fan of his art, and would buy absolutely anything he did. This series essentially turned Moon Knight into Batman (my favorite DC Comics super-hero), and I was definitely here for it.

The success of these stories led directly to Moon Knight getting his own title in 1980...

Moon Knight No. 1 Cover.

They attempted to differentiate Marc Spector and Moon Knight from Bruce Wayne and Batman by giving him multiple identities. It wasn't much of a change because Bruce Wayne adopted all kinds of identities over the years.

But then it happened.

Moon Knight was canceled and revived in a mini-series called Fist of Khonshu in 1985 (Khonshu being the Egyptian moon god that gave Marc his powers). Now Marc Spector didn't just adopt multiple identities, he literally had dissociative iodentity disorder (AKA "Multiple Personalities"). His power also grew or waned with the phases of the moon and were steeped in Khonshu mythology). With this one series, Marc Spector finally became more than "Marvel Comics Batman"... even if the way some of the material was handled ended up being a bit cringe by modern standards.

Eventually I kinda lost track of Moon Knight. He would pop up in team books I'd buy, but they last I remember buying a Moon Knight book was in the late 90's when yet another mini-series was getting some traction.

Fast-forward to today, and we're getting an Oscar Isaac Moon Knight TV series that looks to be leaning heavily into the dissociative identity disorder angle from the comics...

But boy is that "English accent" a show-stopper! Somebody on the internet compared it to Dick VanDyke's hilarious accent in Mary Poppins and now that's all I can hear!

Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke in Marry Poppins.

I do very much like the way that his costume appears and wraps him like a mummy. Very apropriate, and something I don't recall seeing in the comics. But the moon symbol on the hood is weird and unnecessary given that it's huge on his chest. These kind of odd and distracting details are usually avoided by Marvel Studios (and embraced by the shittier DC Comics movies), so this is puzzling to me.

All I can say is that I am really, really looking forward to this series. It looks like a much more violent and unique take on the super-hero genre for Marvel Studios, which is probably why they moved forward with it. They try to make all the characters unique, which is quite a challenge given that they're all super-heroes from comic books. And, if nothing else, getting Oscar Issac to play Marc Spector is an interesting and talented choice.

So long as that "English accent" is used sparingly.

Really, really sparingly.

   

Bullet Sunday 748

Posted on Sunday, January 23rd, 2022

Dave!The snow's a meltin' and Spring is on the way, but don't get too excited... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Mo Betty! Thanks to Brandon from One Child Left Behind fame for this absolute gem of a video featuring a story with both President Obama and Betty White (and, no, you don't have to be a fan of Barrack Obama to enjoy this)...

It's just amazing how many amazing Betty White stories are circulating out there. She touched a lot of lives.

   
• Abbot! Who is watching Quinta Brunson in Abbott Elementary? Genius. The show shining a spotlight on what teachers are facing in the school system... but it's a comedy which has jokes that really hit perfect. Plus it has Sheryl Lee Ralph, whom I adore in absolutely everything she's ever done... and she is a frickin' star in this show. Could not be more perfect. This part had to be written for her. Or maybe it wasn't and she's just that flawless an actor...

You need to watch this on ABC, Hulu, or ABC.com.

   
• Husbands! TikTok is a 100% bizarre place because you just know that half of it isn't original. So many times I'll see something I like then find out it was lifted from somebody else and wasn't credited. Take for example this one, which I loved because it's kinda hopeful for the future (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@thatk1da_en #duet with @matadornetwork u never know#gay#fyp#funny#cliffjumping#wow#foryoupage ♬ original sound - scalar quantity

But then you learn that he actually copied it word-for-word from another creator (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@timjohns_ #duet with @matadornetwork ♬ original sound - scalar quantity

Which was addressed in (you guessed it) yet another TikTok (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@timjohns_ #duet with @thatk1da_en ♬ original sound - scalar quantity

It's like... on one hand... that's pretty shitty. But, on the other hand, it did lead me to the original guy's TikTok, which I now follow, so I dunno.

   
• Nightlife! I am trying my best to burn through as much Netflix as I can before I discontinue monthly service due to yet another rate increase. Right now I am binging Midnight Asia and it's absolutely wonderful...

I've experienced the nightlife in Tokyo and Seoul many times... and the show absolutely does them justice. I am not as familiar with Bangkok's nightlife, but it's a fun episode too. The other episodes are Mumbai, Taipei, and Manilla. Three cities I've never been to, but now I want to visit..

   
• Jacket! Whenever I see BOYCOTT! messages on my Facebook timeline, I usually take a pass. I just don't care. Dig deep enough and all big companies are likely trash. It's the reason for the boycott that interests me. Tucker Carlson is big mad that he's no longer sexually attracted to Green M&M because she isn't wearing high heels any more? Hilarious. The fact that people are boycotting M&Ms over Tucker Carlson wanting to fuck a piece of candy is epic. Then today I see Carhartt being boycotted and I'm like... "Their clothes are great... and they last a while because they're tough. Why are people boycotting them?" The answer? This private company is electing to have a vaccine mandate in order to keep their workforce safe. And I'm like WTF? I thought it would be because they encourage employees to kick puppies or something awful. Personally I applaud them for the move. Must make people a bit more comfortable to work there knowing a co-worker has less a chance of being a petri dish mutating a new strain of COVID. If you don't want to get vaccinated, you can just get a job somewhere else the same way you would if they started mandating a new uniform you hated. Simple. So I was like "I wonder if there's something I want to buy there? A new jacket maybe? I've been wanting a new jacket!" So I ordered one. — Sadly, they didn't have the style I liked in the Carhartt Brown color, because that would have been awesome. But even the black one has a nice-sized logo on the pocket. Looking forward to being screamed at the next time I go to the grocery store. "YOU SHOULD BURN THAT JACKET! DO YOU SUPPORT VACCINE MANDATES BY THE GUBERMINT TOO?!?" Not usually, no. But I'm so fucking tired of this COVID shit that I'm ready to change my mind, and if everybody got vaccinated so the shit would stop mutating unchecked then maybe it would finally... finally... end.

   
• LOLZ! The funniest thing I've seen all month (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@dr.jon.l Day in the life according to the comment section #ivermectin #doctor #funny #teamhalo #covidvaccine ♬ original sound - Doctor Jon

   
• LOLZ2! The second funniest thing (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)....

@dr.jon.l Reply to @dr.jon.l Another day in my life according to the comment section #doctor #funny #teamhalo ♬ original sound - Doctor Jon

   
And I think that's enough for my Sunday bullets.

   

A Book is a Book is a Book

Posted on Tuesday, January 25th, 2022

Dave!I stayed up until midnight tonight so I could watch the latest episode of The Book of Boba Fett on Disney+. The first episode left me a little flat after the absolute joy that was two seasons of The Mandalorian, but I hung in there. And was rewarded with some fantastic episodes of Star Wars. And now that I'm invested, I've been staying up until midnight on Tuesdays so I can watch live and not have to worry about spoilers the next morning.

This was the best episode of the series yet. Which was actually a bit disappointing for reasons that I can't divulge lest I spoil the episode. Suffice to say that this one episode was better than most of the films that have come out of the Star Wars Universe.

And that's why I'm happy I stayed up to watch and am convinced that Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni should just be handed everything. Television. Movies. Specials. Everything. If it's Star Wars then they should be in charge of it. Full stop.

   

Bullet Sunday 749

Posted on Sunday, January 30th, 2022

Dave!Yikes. Look like it's the Northeast's turn to be inundated with snow! But you can still find warmth in your heart... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• BAT! I have watched this SO many times...

Those are some big bites! I love bats.

   
• Eats! Well that was sure nice of him...

@constructioncoach

♬ original sound - Learn To Remodel Better

Somehow, this never occurred to me. But I guess it happens. Or your UberEats driver gets in an accident... or has a car breakdown... or whatever. I guess the good news is that if you're an UberEats driver who gets in an accident you have something to eat while you wait for the tow truck.

   
• Minnie! Disney put Minnie Mouse in a pantsuit, and people are losing their fucking minds. And it's like... it's a cartoon character. Don't stress. My problem isn't that Minnie Mouse is in a pantsuit... it's that she's in a butt-ugly pantsuit. THIS is the best they could come up with?!?

Minnie Mouse in her butt-ugly pantssuit.

At the very least they could have kept her signature red, white, and yellow colors!

   
• Star Dreck! I'm desperate for new Star Trek ahead of the new season of Picard, so I thought I'd give Star Trek: Discovery yet another try. God what a shitty TV show. It's inconceivable that something so incredible in Season 01, just keeps getting worse and worse. Season 02 was bearable, but Season 03 was terrible, and holy shit... I didn't think that Season 04 could possibly be worse... and yet here we are. It's all talking and endless, endless whining about absolutely everything. WHO GIVES A FUCK?!? It is a complete waste of Sonequa Martin-Green, Doug Jones, Ronnie Rowe, and the rest. Star Trek is all about balancing the emotional core with excitement and adventure. Sitting around the bridge talking about your feelings to solve problems is boring as fuck and watching it is tantamount to torture. Oh well. I've decided to watch Picard Season 01 again instead. It didn't stick the landing, but boy did it have some good Star Trek along the way.

   
• Ink! One of my most favorite TikTok creators is "Sad Papi," a chef who has been creating cooking videos for a while now. Even when he cooks meat dishes, he's given me ideas for cooking that have been great. He posted this video recently that wasn't quite cooking-related, and it may one of my favorites (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@sad_papi Reply to @godzillaaa1 ♬ original sound - Sad_papi

Can you imagine being this good-looking, but still having to field shitty comments like this? Insanity. Fortunately he had the perfect response.

   
• MACGRUBER! I have been dying to see a MacGruber sequel ever since the first movie in 2010. It was bizarre, hilarious, and entertaining in a way I didn't really expect. Fast forward twelve years and Peacock gave us a MacGruber limited series. That lead to Will Forte going full-circle and returning to the character he originated on Saturday Night Live...

It's amazing to me that Kristen Wiig and Ryan Phillippe are back as well. Both have had non-stop work this entire time... but maybe working with Will Forte on another MacGruber project was just too much fin to resist? I hope they feel the same way about returning for a second season of the show!

   
Enjoy what's left of your Sunday, party people.

   

Bullet Sunday 750

Posted on Sunday, February 6th, 2022

Dave!I'm tired, but not ready to give up on my Sunday just yet... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• SHE GOT MONEY! If you aren't watching Abbott Elementary you are missing out. I've shared so many of Quinta's videos over the years... it's so very cool to be able to share her TV show, which is amazing. I was thrilled to find out that it's been such a big hit.

The cast of Abbott Elementary

Plus... Sheryl Lee Ralph is in it!

   
• The World May Never Know! Was it Hershey or Reese That Made Peanut Butter Cups Great?

   
• Darwinism. It's what's for dinner! Three Kids Tried To Get Spiderman Powers By Letting A Black Widow Bite Them. — I mean, the spider that bit Peter Parker was a RADIOACTIVE SPIDER! If these kids wanted super-powers, they would have had to have made the spider radioactive first. Sheesh!

   
• ADOBE IN 3D! The new 3D "technology preview" tools in Adobe Illustrator are choice. I sure hope that they continue to add features before they get rid of the old tools. Not being able to map user textures and control camera perspective is a major problem. And half the time when I add a cap, it doesn't appear on my extrudes. — At the rate that Adobe is adding 3D apps to their Creative Suite, I sure hope that this is an indication that they will be dropping a full-blown 3D modeler soon. How sweet would it be to be able to craft models with the same tools you already know and love?

   
• Credit Card Doubt! Five messages and two phone calls later and I *might* have finally gotten The Home Depot to credit the $50 I was promised on my purchase when I opened an account. I say "might" because I was told it will take 24 hours to a few days for the credit to be applied. So... yeah... I'm dumping that credit card the minute my $50 comes through so I can pay the shit off. I cannot BELIEVE that companies are allowed to try and scam you like this. I clicked ON A BUTTON that said "Up to $100 Cash Back" and yet I was given some kind of "12 Months Same as Cash" deal with NO $50 that I never even knew existed. It would be my fault if the button said "12 Months Same as Cash"... BUT IT DOES NOT! And it STILL doesn't. How fucking hard is this? You promise me $50... just give me the $50. This is not fucking rocket science. And yet... five messages and two phone calls...

   
And on that happy note, buh-bye Sunday.

   

Reacher 2.0

Posted on Monday, February 7th, 2022

Dave!I was not a huge fan of the Jack Reacher movies with Tom Cruise. The first one was actually pretty good, but Cruise ain't Reacher. His defining characteristic is his massive size, and Tom Cruise ain't that.

I am, however, a big fan of the Lee Child books upon which the movies were based.

So I was more than a little intrigued when I found out that Amazon Prime Video was making a new series based on the material simply called Reacher. All I knew about it was that they had (finally) cast a big guy to play the part.

On Friday series finally arrived and it was darn good...

You miss the internal monologue from the books that makes Reacher's head such an interesting place to be, but they did a pretty good job making sure that he's seen as more than a grunting hulk of a man just beating people up. But anyway... if you're looking for a series to binge, this one is worth a look.

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Betty and Back Again

Posted on Tuesday, February 8th, 2022

Dave!I've been re-watching a lot of Betty White shows and movies this past week. There's just so many incredible things to choose from, but the best repository of clips can be found on YouTube. I've seen most of them multiple times, but there's always something I don't recall having watched. Mostly her gameshow appearances. She was very good at gameshows, but also highly entertaining as well. Which is not surprising. She always is.

While watching video after video, I happened across Betty White's interview on Inside The Actor's Studio, which I haven't seen in years. It's well worth your valuable time to watch...

Everything about this is great... but I love at the very end where one of the students mentions that he and Betty attended the same schools and she asks him if he wants to sing the Beverly Hills High fight song. He couldn't remember it... but of course she could. Classic.

   

Bullet Sunday 751

Posted on Sunday, February 13th, 2022

Dave!I may not care about football, but that doesn't mean today is lost on me... because an all new Trailer Edition of Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Strange! The latest trailer for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness dropped today, and I am 100% here for all of it...

Kudos to Marvel Studios for dipping their toe into the horror movie genre with this film. Obviously it's not going to be a full-on horror flick... there's no room for that in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as of yet. But it does look like they are trying to lean into the "madness" aspect of the name to try and do something different with the movie. That's a good thing, because it would be all too easy for them to stretch the whole super-hero thing too thin with all these films. Endeavoring to make them all have a different tone is what makes them work so well. And one last thing... ws that... Professor X? saying "We should tell him the truth?"

   
• NOPE! Jordan Peele has become a major force in movie horror, and it looks like he's pushing boundaries even further with Nope, his next film coming this Summer...

It's pretty crazy how all I know about the film is that Daniel Kaluuya, Steven Yeun, Donna Mills, and Keke Palmer are in it... and the trailer doesn't really even tell you anything... yet I'm dying to see it anyway. Not too many directors able to pull that off!

   
• Moon! I am still riding a high from the last Disney+ series, Hawkeye (having just watched it again yesterday), and have to admit that I'm skeptical that Moon Knight will end up as good. But the latest trailer does look pretty killer...

Kevin Feige has made it clear that they are not shying away from violence in the series. I know they aren't going to make it into a blood bath, but it definitely looks like that are going to make it hit harder than they have with other series.

   
• Baby Me! Is it just me, or does the GM Doctor Evil commercial just make me want to see another Austin Powers movie?

The individual ads are all good, but the capper ad is what makes a new film feel like such a good idea...

It kinda seems like a no-brainer, if not for another movie a streaming series, but here we are left waiting.

   
• DC! The DC Cinematic Universe has been a complete shit-show from the very beginning. In looking at the combo-trailer for The Batman, Black Adam, The Flash, and Aquaman 2, I can't say I'm exactly blown away...

The only one that looks remotely interesting to me is Black Adam, and that's only because we've got Dr. Fate, Hackman, and The Atom happening. I'm guessing this is because Black Adam is going to be fighting the Justice Society, but it doesn't look like Black Adam is going to be an actual villain like in the comics since the trailer title is "The World Needs Heroes."

   
• Rings! YouTube is full of videos saying that Amazon Prime Video's Lord of the Rings prequel is being "destroyed" by "woke culture" because it has Black characters in it. And I'm like... whatever. I can believe that elves and dwarves are Black just as easily as I can believe that elves and dwarves are white, so I'll be just fine...

What I'm worried about is being bored with the damn thing. I thought The Wheel of Time fantasy series (also at Amazon Prime Video) was less than stellar, and didn't get past two episodes. Granted, I'm more familiar with the Tolkien material than the Robert Jordan material, but I'm no more attached to it. I'll give the show a shot though, and that's about all I can do.

   
• Adam! Netflix released their Super Bowl trailer a few days ago, and it's a tantalizing teaser of upcoming movies...

Knives Out 2 and Enola Holmes 2 are easily the two projects with the most pull... but the one I am most looking forward to is the latest Ryan Reynolds flick. His movies don't disappoint, and this one looks like it's going to be another winner.

   
Guess I'll go back to not watching the Super Bowl now.

   

Superb Owl Hal Ftimes How?

Posted on Monday, February 14th, 2022

Dave!No, I didn't want the Super Bowl. I don't give a crap about football. The only sports I have any interest in are baseball (GO RED SOX!) and hockey (GO BLACKHAWKS!). Which is not to say that I have no interest in the Super Bowl itself, because the commercials and half-time show are always a lot of fun.

The half-time show was amazingly great. Not Prince level-great (how could it be?), but I thought it was extremely well done and the performances were fantastic. Epic even.

But of course all the news today was either about how Snoop Dogg smoked a joint before he went on stage...

Snoop Dogg Smoking a Joint Before the Super Bowl Half-Time Show.

...or how Eminem kneeled...

Eminem Kneeling at the Super Bowl Half-Time Show.
Image from Mike Segar @ Reuters

...or how Mary J. Blige was showing thigh in her costume choice...

Mary J. Blige and her amazing outfit at the Super Bowl Half-Time Show.
Image from Kevin C. Cox @ Getty Images

...or how Dr. Dre sang the lyric "still not loving police" in his song Still D.R.E....

Dr. Dre soaking up the applause at the Super Bowl Half-Time Show.
Image Credit Unknown (taken from Rolling Stone)

To which I can only respond...

  • Snoop Dogg is always high. He in no way has ever concealed this, so when you book him for a gig you can count on him performing high. That's how he does what he does. Nobody should be shocked. Feel free not to watch the Super Bowl ever again if this offends you.
  • It's a free country. Eminem is going to do what he's going to do. So stop acting like he took out a gun and shot people during the snow. He took a knee. That's it. And I find it incredible to have to repeat the fact that Colin Kaepernick ASKED VETERANS THE MOST RESPECTFUL WAY TO PROTEST WITHOUT DISRESPECTING THE FLAG OR THEIR SERVICE, AND TAKING A KNEE WAS WHAT HE WAS TOLD. So everybody can just calm the fuck down. This form of protest was endorsed by the only people who should give a shit. And Eminem expressing his beliefs and opinions are exactly what this country is supposed to be about. Feel free not to watch the Super Bowl ever again if this offends you.
  • As for Mary J. Blige. Are you fucking serious? People wear FAR less than this at a public pool. She looked spectacular and her outfit was not the least bit problematic. If people want to feel otherwise, then go right ahead. It's a free country. So feel free not to watch the Super Bowl ever again if this offends you.
  • Dr. Dre is able to express his experience just like everybody else, and if he has a platform to do so, then why should he give a crap if some people won't like it? Answer? HE SHOULDN'T! Elon Musk and other billionaires do and say stuff which offends me all the time and people praise them for it... but Dr. Dre should be treated differently? Fuck no. None of the words he used were profanity. And condemning him over what he feels and what has experienced is absurd. Go ahead and be offended. Refuse to buy his music. You do you. But understand they he gets to do him too. And, oh yeah... feel free not to watch the Super Bowl ever again if this offends you.

I didn't look very hard, but I'm sure that Kendrick Lamar and 50 Cent were lambasted over something. They're Black men in America, which means somebody somewhere is pissed off about it. That (along with death and taxes) is a certainty. And all the more reason they deserve to be performing at the Super Bowl. And probably should have been a long time ago.

Anyway...

When it comes to the commercials, there were a few that got me. My hands-down favorite was The Sopranos remix with the kids reenacting the show opening...

It doesn't feel like a Super Bowl without a Budweiser commercial that makes you want to bawl your head off...

The star power in the Planet Fitness ad was great. And the way that Lindsay Lohan is willing to poke fun at herself just makes me love her all the more (I fell back into love with her again after her response to a Cameo request)...

I love anything with Salma Hayek... but it was the surprise appearance by Arnold that made this commercial so much fun...

I could listen to Morgan Freeman read the telephone book and be completely entertained, so hearing him in this terrific ad for Turkish Airlines was great...

The Alexa ad by Scarlett Johansson and Colin Jost was seriously funny...

Probably the most important and heartwarming commercial was for the Google Pixel 6 phone, which works to take amazing photos of you... no matter your skin tone. And I'm sure that Google will be accused of being "too woke" or some other such bullshit because a lot of white people will be saying "I don't know what Black people are complaining about!" because this is a non-issue FOR THEM... but imagine how important this is for persons with dark skin tones who have had to live with their photos turning out crappy because nobody ever bothered to try and make them look good? Wonderful. And how the world should be...

Runner up to most important commercial is a commentary on the insane divide of this country and how people will go at each other throats over shit that doesn't matter...

So... all in all... not a bad slate of ads that I actually wanted to watch. Effective advertising seems like a lost artform (99% of commercials are shit and don't make me want to do anything except ignore them, skip them, or not buy the product), so it's nice that somebody somewhere knows how to do it right.

   

Bullet Sunday 752

Posted on Sunday, February 20th, 2022

Dave!Do not go gentle into that good night... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• LEGEND! To say that Roy Kent is my favorite television character of all time is kinda underselling it. And to them get him to do something like THIS?!?

Perfect.

   
• Well, Fuck! Doesn't it just figure? After decades of finally trying to find the perfect frozen pizza, I actually DO, only to have Red Baron fucking change it...

Old vs. New

The cheese, which used to be creamy and gooey has been cut bigger and now tastes chewy... like I have a mouth of pencil erasers. The crust looks the same, but it doesn't cook up light a airy like bread... it's more pasty and dense. This could be because the cheese and sauce has changed... but it really doesn't seem the same. And it's like... WHY?!? Why change something that's actually good? Oh well. I was eating way too much pizza anyway (I was buying six at a time)... so that problem is solved.

   
• Marple! Ever since not being able to go to the theater to see the remake of Agatha Christie's Death on the Nile, I've been obsessing over other Agatha Christie adaptations. And I think that I've found the book which has been adapted the most... A Caribbean Mystery. This evening I started with the 1983 Helen Hayes movie, which is my favorite. Then tomorrow I'll finish up with the BBC/ITV versions from 1989 and 2013...

The three different versions of A Caribbean Mystery

The BBC version with Joan Hickson is likely the most faithful version... but I'm just such a huge Helen Hayes fan that it's difficult for me to see past it.

   
• MIWANDA! Dead. Legit dead. If you've seen Sex and the City: And Just Like That... this is one of the funniest things you'll see (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@zzzachariah Justice for silly Steve 🤪 #satc #sexandthecity #ajlt #andjustlikethat #mirandahobbes #stevebrady #carriebradshaw ♬ Sad Emotional Piano - DS Productions

Steve was thoroughly trashed by the sequel series, and this puts a cherry on it.

   
• Threat! For whatever reason, I have been getting a shocking number of viruses attempting to take over my computer these past few weeks. Four appeared just yesterday...

Threat messages from BitDefender.

There was a day that Mac users didn't have to worry so much about viruses, but now? Yeah. If you're a Mac user, I would install some kind of virus protection sooner rather than later. I went with BitDefender because I got a deal on it, but anything you find is bound to be better than nothing.

   
• EmmyEmm! I find it fucking hilarious when dipshit ass-clowns like Rudy Giuliani dare to talk shit about anybody. They just don't have the brains to do it without getting fucking roasted in the rebuttal...

Gotta hand it to the writers at The Late Show, this parody of Eminem is funny as hell. Not that it was very difficult for them to come up with something... Giuliani is basically a parody of himself.

   
• Peace, Mutherfucker! The season finale of Peacemaker was sublime. Absolutely perfect. Thanks to James Gunn for such a terrific show... but especially for Vigilante, who is easily one of my favorite characters now. Freddie Stroma was inspired casting! And then there's Adebayo. Holy crap did she get an amazing character arc in this series! "I was made for this shit!" is right! Cannot wait for Season 02.

   
Until next Sunday, true believers...

   

Streaming Wars 2022

Posted on Thursday, March 3rd, 2022

Dave!Last night I was asked which streaming platforms I subscribe to. My answer was "All of them... just not all at the same time." Firstly, because who can afford that? And secondly, there's only so many hours in the day I can watch television.

Those that I pay for with annual memberships (or monthly if they are backwards and don't offer the money-savings)...

  • Disney+ (Annual)
    As the Marvel Studios and Star Wars content keeps ramping up, I am watching more and more. Marvel worried me at first because I wasn't as enchanted as most people were, but Hawkeye redeemed their efforts. If I could only have one streaming network, this would be the one I keep because it's the one I most enjoy. Plus? Obi-Wan is almost here.
  • HBO Max (Annual)
    Color me surprised. I had subscribed for a month at a time off and on when there was something I wanted to watch. But then with Dune and The Suicide Squad and Matrix Resurrections I held onto it for a while... and was surprised at how often I was watching it. There's just so much stuff happening, which makes it a great value.
  • YouTube Premium (Annual)
    I watch a crazy amount of YouTube for everything from learning to entertainment, but I'm mortified at the number of ads they cram into their bullshit. Fortunately, you can pay money to eliminate the ads entirely. It seems more expensive than it's worth, but given how much I use it, it's worth it to me so I'm not wasting valuable time watching shitty ads.
  • Discovery+ (Annual)
    I watch an absurd amount of home renovation shows, and they can all be found here. And while the Magnolia Network section has been a scorching disappointment, there's still plenty I end up watching.
  • Amazon Prime (Annual)
    I don't order as much from Amazon as I used to, and started seriously questioning whether or not I needed to subscribe to their Prime service. But between the wide variety of "free" streaming programming and a nice discount on their music service, Prime is worth a lot more than just free shipping. Heck, I'd pay the price just to watch Reacher.
  • Apple TV+ (Monthly)
    Apple has been a mixed bag. For every total gem like Ted Lasso you get an abhorrent crap-fest like Foundation. And while the content it definitely lacking, the stuff I actually like is stuff I really, really like. I don't know yet where Severance falls... it's intriguing, but so slow-moving that I'm completely bored waiting for the interesting bits. This should either have been nine half-hour episodes or four to five hour episodes. Not nine hour-long episodes.
  • Philo (Monthly)
    I get a nice discount every month as a part of my T-Mobile perks, so I hang on to this for Hallmark Channel and some other content that I watch from time to time.

Those I turn off-and-on, as needed...

  • Hulu (Cheap-Ass Ad-Supported)
    While not entirely enchanted by their offerings, they do have some really cool shows and movies I've enjoyed over the years. So I activate my subscription a couple times a year to watch them.
  • Netflix (Cheap-Ass Basic SD)
    They raised their prices. Again. And so now I am just activating it a few times a year to catch up on the great stuff they do... while not sinking my money into a service which is quickly spending a lot of resources on crap I don't want and won't use (like games). The SD quality option looks like crap, but since I'm not watching all the time, it's fine.
  • Peacock (Cheap-Ass Ad-Supported)
    NBC's streamer is kinda... bad. There's just not that much there that interests me. But every once in a blue moon I subscribe for a month to see what I'm missing. Most of the time it's nothing, but they do have some good shows and movies.
  • Funimation
    Anime heaven. And even their cheapest plan is ad-free. I sign up for a month when I feel like taking a deep dive into anime, which happens a couple times a year. I prefer Funimation to Crunchy Roll, though there's some content there that's worth a look as well. What I don't understand is that Funimation and Crunchy Roll are both backed by Sony. Why?
  • BritBox/Acorn TV
    I have a deep, deep love of British television. These two services are good for a month or two when I simply have to have it. But both services, good as they are, have pretty sad back-catalogs. Love 8 Out of 10 Cats? Well, you're not getting everything... just the past four seasons. Like, WHY?!? WHY NOT ALL THE FUCKING SEASONS? And where are all the old episodes of shows like Never Mind the Buzzcocks? Nowhere to be found. It is hugely frustrating that these streamers are so bloody limited in scope, because I'd likely be an annual subscriber if they would only have some depth to their catalogs.
  • Sundance
    AMC (American Movie Classics) has ten-or-so streaming networks, none of which are worth much to me on their own. With the possible exception of Sundance, which is home to shows I like such as This Close. Why in the hell AMC doesn't just combine all their crap into a single mega-streamer (including Acorn TV!) is a complete mystery to me. That is something I might pay an annual fee to have.

Those that I pay for out of protest...

  • Paramount+ (Annual, Cheap-Ass Ad-Supported)
    This streaming service is technically 100% shit but has some programming I enjoy (most of the Star Trek stuff and cool shows like Magnum P.I. and NCIS: Hawai'i are here). But it's so fucking frustrating trying to get their shows to actually play. Newer shows often play without issue. But any of their older programming? 90% of the time it simply will not play. They'll say you are using a VPN or blame it on your browser or whatever... but I'm not using a VPN on my television and AppleTV doesn't have a browser. I've wasted entirely too much time being blamed for their problem by their customer "service" when I have zero problem with EVERY OTHER service. I detest these assholes and their fucking turd of a service, but still subscribe from time to time so I can watch a show that's only found here. I used to buy seasons of Magnum PI from iTunes, now I just sink the money here so I can watch Picard and stuff.

So far I haven't felt a need for streamers like Showtime and Starz and such... but if there's a series or movie that's exclusive and something I'm dying to see... well... I guess you do what you gotta do.

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Bullet Sunday 753

Posted on Sunday, March 6th, 2022

Dave!Don't let life distract your from what's truly important... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Homemade! The last French rolls I bought were $4.80 for six, were small, gummy, and didn't taste that great. So this time when I wanted an Old Amsterdam Old Cheese sandwich roll I made my own big, beautiful, fluffy rolls...

My fluffy buns!

My fluffy buns with cheese on them!

Cost me less than $1... and they are unbelievably good. So good that I can't stop eating them. I've had three. It will take all my effort to not to eat a fourth.

   
• Welcome to My Nightmare! Had I seen Nightmare Alley in 2021, it would have made my best-of list for sure. The story is interesting enough, but it's the visuals and atmosphere that makes the film so special. It's a work of art. Its every scene is gorgeously and meticulously constructed...

Nightmare Alley Poster

And the performances! Bradley Cooper can act, sure... but it's Cate Blanchett who drives this bus home. Then you get Willem DaFoe, Rooney Mara, Toni Collette, Ron Perlman, Mary Steenburgen, and an utterly brilliant and pivotal character by David Strathairn. It's too good. The fatalistic destiny which haunts everybody is palpable.

   
• Good Bye. Dang. Dieter Bohn is leaving The Verge. He and Marques Brownlee are the only two tech reviewers that I actively seek out because they are just so good at their job. In his farewell video, Dieter talks about his online handle, "Backlon," which is something I can very much relate to. Online I'm "Blogography" for everything because it's my blog name and how everybody knew me. So it became my handle everywhere. As Dieter says, "The choice causes a cascade of associations for whoever sees that handle." And it's 100% true. This is a fascinating video about our online identity... and everything I will miss about Dieter Bohn...

Best of luck at Google, sir.

   
• Dave! There have been a lot of great guests on Hot Ones, and Dave Growl is right up there...

And here's a bonus bit of Dave for you...

He is hands-down one of the most fascinating people on the planet.

   
• Depot-Free! It only took three months, four phone calls, and a dozen messages to get The Home Depot and Citi to credit me the $50 I was promised when I opened my account... but here it is! CAN YOU BELIEVE IT? I can't believe it. I just made the full balance payment, so I'll believe it when it's posted, I have a zero balance, AND I CAN CLOSE THIS FUCKING ACCOUNT. I wish to God I had never messed with the Home Depot Credit Card which has been a complete nightmare from the very beginning. If you are going to promise a customer "Up to $100 Off" if they open account... and their purchases qualify for a $50 credit... THEN GIVE THEM THE FUCKING MONEY! How difficult is this? Apparently very difficult, given what I've been through. Do they expect people to just give up so they never have to pay what was promised? Well, you got the wrong guy for that.

   
• Say Human! Florida's "Don't Say Gay" bill is disgusting. The inhumanity of this horrific decision sickens me to my very core. And all I can think about is what happens to those kids in school who have two moms or two dads or a trans parent or a sibling who identifies outside the absurd artificial construct of binary sexuality. Their family members no longer exist while they’re being “educated.” Which is to say that they’re not being educated at all. They’re being discriminated against. Fuck those grotesque mockeries of humanity who would be so overtly bigoted and cruel. I’ve long since given up hope that our lawmakers will be decent human beings who want to represent all of us... but I do kinda cling to the hope that I can count on them to be selfish. That they’ll look at friends... family... neighbors... and other people they know... even actors, musicians, writers, and such... and say "I can’t possibly legislate against these people who mean something to me." But of course they can. Because they’re absolute garbage who don’t care who is hurt no matter who those affected may be to them. Appealing to bigotry is how they stay in government, and the money and power they get for that means more to them than anybody or anything. And also? Fuck the heinous assholes who vote for these repugnant pieces of shit. Fuck them twice.

   
• Just Die Already. And speaking of fucking assholes... this decrepit piece of shit wouldn't know the Bible if it sat on his face...

It defies belief that people believe his idiocy. Has he even actually studied the Bible? I sincerely have my doubts, because most everything he has ever said is not supported by Scripture. These are just his unhinged, demented fantasies. Counting the days until he's sent to hell for his shameless false prophet money-grabbing.

   
See you in seven days, true bullet believers.

   

Help Me Obi Wan Kenobi Number One

Posted on Wednesday, March 9th, 2022

Dave!This is the tenth anniversary of Disney's epic disaster, the movie John Carter. I was reminded of this sad fact because there's a look-back at the movie happening over at The Wrap. I don't have anything more to say about this heinous abomination of a film than what I said in my initial scathing review... but I do have a new perspective.

A perspective that comes from the successful adaptation of Dune after the initial failure of that film in 1984.

If only somebody like Denis Villenueve with reverence of the original books could have been put in charge of John Carter of Mars, then maybe it would have had a shot at success. Instead we got a movie which bore only a passing resemblance to the novel. They ignored some fairly major things that made the series work as books, and instead added a bunch of stupid shit that didn't work at all.

As a massive fan of the Edgar Rice Burroughs novels, I fucking hated this film. And my opinion hasn't changed one bit in a decade. I tried watching it again tonight to see if there was any redemption to be had, but there was not. Terrific visuals and special effects which are pounded to shit by a horrible script.

Part of the article at The Wrap was Andrew Stanton talking about the plan for sequel films. The second of which was to be Gods of Mars and the third of the trilogy being Warlord of Mars...

Given how badly the film portrayed the holy Therns and their role in things, there could be no doubt that the sequel would have totally fucked up Gods of Mars just like it completely ruined A Princes of Mars. And so... a part of me is relieved that John Carter failed so utterly that we never had to suffer through the sequels. But the bigger part of me is still angry that we had to suffer through any of this shit at all.

Oh well. The books haven't gone anywhere, so I can return to Barsoom... the actual fucking Barsoom... any time I like.

And then there's this...

If there's anything that can redeem Star Wars after the shitty fucking prequel trilogy, this would be it. Ewan McGregor as Obi Wan Kenobi was one of the few good things to come out of those crap films (another being Samuel L. Jackson's Mace Windu).

I guess all we can do is hope for the best.

And then there's this...

After an incredible first season, Star Trek: Discovery became one of the shittiest Star Trek shows to ever air, which is why I am really, really hoping that the best thing to come out of it... Captain Pike, Spock, Number One, and the crew of the original-original Enterprise... will redeem that franchise.

I guess all we can do is hope for the best.

   

Bullet Sunday 754

Posted on Sunday, March 13th, 2022

Dave!I've been watching too much television lately, but never you fear... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• UPLOAD! HOW ABOUT THAT UPLOAD SEASON 2?!? This show could have so easily... so very easily.... just kept doing what what it was doing in the first season and stagnated into irrelevance. But they decided to really go for it...

Alas, they dropped it with yet another cliffhanger. Which is fine IF WE GET A THIRD SEASON. But an official renewal has not been greenlit, so who knows. The first season seemed to be just the right length at 10 bingeable half-hour episodes... but we only got seven episodes this time, which seemed a bit rushed. But that's the COVID world we live in, I guess.

   
• Presence! Well that was unexpected. Easily one of the best Hallmark movies I've ever seen (which is saying something considering I've seen... well... most all of them), The Presence of Love is worth a look if you enjoy the occational rom-com flick...

Gorgeously shot on location in Cornwall and beautifully-acted by Eloise Mumford and Julian Morris, this is a very special film that caught me entirely by surprise.

   
• Unintended Use! Now that I have a new chair, I've been working on sprucing up my studio so it's more comfortable and productive. A big part of that is getting rid of the cardboard box that's clamped to my drafting table to hold all my stuff. It doesn't really work very well and I have to dig through it to find things. So I bought these little kitchen trays that have just enough friction to keep from sliding around. As a bonus, the soap holder fits inside the tray to organize my pens...

Drafting table organization.

Drafting table organization.

It's always nice to run across something that works for what you need when it's not the intended use of the item!

   
• Adam! Ryan Reynolds makes even bad movies watchable, so I knew I'd enjoy his latest for Netflix... The Adam Project...

And while not in any way groundbreaking, it was darn entertaining. It also had a story that wasn't terrible, assuming you don't think about it too hard. If you're a fan of Ryan Reynolds and sci-fi fun, this is the movie for you.

   
• Construction! The guy from Primitive Technology is back at long last. I love his videos...

   
• ER! The second season of Transplant, which has been playing in Canada for MONTHS has finally been released here in the USA on NBC (I just bought the Season Pass on iTunes again). This is hands-down my favorite medical drama ever (and my third favorite show of 2020 after Ted Lasso and The Mandalorian). If you're not watching it, you're missing out...

If you give it a try, be sure to start with the first episode of Season 01, because it starts out with a bang you don't want to miss.

   
• Edward! Ever since finding out that Mitchell Ryan passed away on March 4th, I've been rewatching the first season of Dharma & Greg, where he was in top form as Edward Montgomery. He was hilarious in the show, which was really great for a couple seasons...

Mitchell Ryan

Rest In Peace, sir.

   
Until next week there, buckaroo.

   

Stream-Based Economy

Posted on Monday, March 14th, 2022

Dave!It was announced that HBO Max and Discovery+ will be merging.

This was inevitable. People dumped cable and satellite companies so they could pay for only the networks they actually watch instead of a bunch of shitty channels they never watch. But there have been way, way too many streaming services out there. And their value to consumers is starting to plummet as people give them up completely (or do what I do, turn them off-and-on as needed). By merging together, you're guaranteeing that there's more content people will want to see, so they'll keep paying for your stuff. I watch enough HBO Max and Discovery+ that I buy annual subscriptions. But neither of them is really worth that and I always struggle on spending the money. But if they were a single service? Subscriber for life, baby.

Assuming the price is affordable.

Which begs the question... will they raise prices after the merger? Probably. We'll have to see if it's enough for me to bother. Since I've quickly become disenchanted with commercial-supported subscriptions and never want to watch a fucking commercial ever again, I'd rather turn my subscription on-and-off than to pay for an annual ad-supported subscription.

I wonder how long it will be until all the streaming services merge and we're right back to the shit-show we were in with cable and sattelite?

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Ms.

Posted on Tuesday, March 15th, 2022

Dave!I hate to say it... but I was a bit underwhelmed by WandaVision and The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. WandaVision was not what I was hoping to see from those characters and The Falcon and The Winter Soldier was too convoluted and the overall story was lacking (though the magical chemistry between Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan made it totally worth watching).

Then came Hawkeye and Marvel Studios totally redeemed themselves. That series was SO good. Very faithful to the original Matt Fraction and David Aja comics and incredibly entertaining thanks to fantastic performances from Jeremy Renner and Hailee Steinfeld (not to mention every other actor in that series... it was impeccably cast). All of a sudden I was excited for the Disney+ series again.

Then we got the trailer for Moon Knight and that looks fantastic too.

And now Ms. Marvel...

The original Ms. Marvel comic book series was great. I absolutely loved how it blended so many elements into something that felt new. If you haven't read it, you should really take a look.

When I heard that the character was coming to the MCU, I was thrilled. But also worried. Because Ms. Marvel's powers are essentially Mister Fantastic (of the Fantastic Four) but come across more like Plastic Man. Since Fantastic Four is coming to the MCU in their own movie fairly soon... it would be weird to have the stretching/distorting powers already belonging to an existing character...

Ms. Marvel being all stretchy and stuff.
@2022 Marvel

But (fortunately) Kevin Feige and Marvel Studios aren't falling into this trap.

So they adjusted Kamala Khan's powers to be more energy-based, like her hero, Captain Marvel. And they look fantastic, don't they? She's kinda got what we were hoping that Green Lantern would have... and yet it very much harkens back to her comic book powers with the giant fist projecting like that. Cool.

What's so wonderful about what Marvel Studios is doing is trying to give all their franchises a different feel. And Ms. Marvel looks completely different from anything we've seen yet. Sure, the Spider-Man movies have played on Peter Parker's high school life... but it wasn't rooted there. And now we have it, which will be fun to see.

Alas, we have to wait until June 8th... which seems a very long time from now.

   

Bullet Sunday 755

Posted on Sunday, March 20th, 2022

Dave!Spring has sprung and I'm motivated for nothing but being lazy, yet do not fear... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Saavik! I put off watching "How I Met Your Father" for the longest time because I still feel burned by the horrible way that "How I Met Your Mother" ended. I'm not too familiar with Hillary Duff... but I'm fans of Chris Lowell and Suraj Sharma, so I decided to give it a try. I had no idea that Kim Cattrall was playing Future Hillary Duff! She's great!

This was definitely a better move than dredging up Samantha Jones for the awful Sex And The City revival (And Just Like That...). Wise move on her part.

   
• Windu! PLEASE! PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE!!! Disney+ needs to make this happen!

   
• Moon Knight! This show just keeps looking better and better...

Ten more days...

   
• National Treasure! Dolly Parton respectfully requested to be removed herself from consideration to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame because she hasn't made a rock & roll album... but hopes they will consider her in the future if she does make one (something she's always wanted to do).

First of all... ZOMG! A ROCK AND ROLL ALBUM FROM Dolly Parton?!? GIMME GIMME GIMMEEEEEEE! Can you just imagine?!? Second of all... I think Dolly severely underestimates her contribution to rock & roll. It's not just the music you release, but the influence you have on other musicians and the industry as a whole that should be considered. And she's got that all over. Third of all... you don't "nominate" Dolly Parton for anything. You just give it to her. I find it a little embarrassing for The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame that they would even put her in this position. And they really need to stop. I mean, Quincy Jones wasn't inducted until 2013, and that was a grotesque oversight waiting that long. Can you imagine having to vote for Quincy Jones to be inducted? Ridiculous. Just give it to him. Then there's Nile Rodgers, who wasn't inducted until 2017. TWO THOUSAND SEVENTEEN!!! Nile Rodgers!!! It's like... what are you even doing?

And then they denied her request.

   
• The Flight Attendant! The first season was such a pleasant surprise. This looks great!

More television to look forward to!

   
• Harassment. Trevor breaking it down as only he can. This is a must-watch video (here's a link in caseTikTok is being a dick)...

@thedailyshow Unpacking the Kim-Kanye-Pete situation and the harassment many women face when trying to leave a relationship. #fyp #foryoupage #dailyshow ♬ original sound - The Daily Show

   
• Jeez! What. The fuck. Jane Campion stepped in shit and that smell ain't EVER going to leave her. Serena and Venus Williams are INARGUABLY two of the greatest athletes to ever walk this earth, and to try to diminish that by saying they're only great because they don't have to play against the men like you do?p>

— =clicks tongue in amazement= —

Yeah. Good luck with that. I try to imagine the majority of male tennis players going up against Serena Williams and very nearly wet myself laughing.

Do not try to take the shine off of somebody else's greatness to make yourself look better... because you only end up tarnishing yourself. I mean, Campion wrote and directed In the Cut, a total turd of a film, after all. Man or woman, a steaming pile is a steaming pile. This is SO unbelievable. Is Campion going to try the Rosanne Bar Defense and blame Ambien or whatever for her being a dumbass? I guess we'll find out.

   
Enjoy your week! Hope you're not lazy like me.

   

In Absence of Travel

Posted on Monday, March 21st, 2022

Dave!For decades... 30 years plus... I've traveled on the week of my birthday. Partly because I just don't want to be home to celebrate an occasion that I don't celebrate, but mostly because it seemed like a nice treat for myself for surviving another year. In years when I could afford it, I've left the country. In other years I find something a little more domestic. And it's been great.

The hard part these past two years have been seeing my Facebook feed packed to the rafters with all my past travels... all the while knowing that I'm not going to be going anywhere thanks to the pandemic.

Oh well.

Could be worse.

Though looking at the shit-show this world has become, I guess it is worse?

And, to be honest, I'm not sure my heart is in travel any more. Certainly not to the extent that it used to be. There are still some places I'd really like to go, but will I ever get there? As time marches on will I even care? And if I ever do care enough to travel again (and if it's ever safe enough to travel again), will the places I want to go even be available to me? It's always been my dream to visit St. Petersburg. But, well, you know...

In other news... the Netflix Marvel shows are now on Disney+. I found this out when I tried to log in and they asked me to set up a ne profile so that I can watch shows not meant for children.

And so I've been rewatching the three seasons of Daredevil we were lucky enough to get. One thing that's immediately apparent is why Marvel Studios didn't bother to recast Matt Murdock & Kingpin for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Charlie Cox and Vincent D'Onofrio are sublimely perfect in the roles. Anything less would be a step backwards...

Though what's going to come of it, who knows? A new season of Daredevil on Disney+? A new Daredevil movie? More appearance in other Marvel Studios movies and series?

Hopefully all of that.

   

Bullet Sunday 756

Posted on Sunday, March 27th, 2022

Dave!I may be another year older, but I'm not letting my advanced age slow me down... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Death! The fact that Taika Waititi still makes time to do crazy stuff like this in-between all his other massive projects is a gift...

I really enjoyed the series! Find it on HBO Max!

   
• Harm Reduction! This is essential viewing. So few people actually understand what's at play here and how addiction actually works... and the best way to combat it while keeping non-addicts safe...

Seeing people who have no clue about ANY of this making laws is outrageous.

   
• CODA! ARTICLE: “We’re Not Deaf Actors — We’re Actors, Period”: ‘CODA’s Watershed Moment in Representation — When you read this story (and I *highly* recommend you do) I hope you are as enraged as I was to learn that movie studios defeated a class action lawsuit which would have required that films have their music lyrics captioned so that deaf persons can know what is being communicated by the songs the filmmakers selected. If you're deaf, you don't get to experience the whole story of movies you see... and studios fought against you being able to experience the whole story. Why the fuck would they do this? Why would they WANT to do this? Outrageous. And I hope that Disney, Warner Bros., Universal, Paramount and Sony are nailed to the fucking wall by consumer rage after people learn about how they treat their deaf patrons.

   
• Buying Air! I saw "falafel burgers" and thought they sounded amazing. So I bought a box. When I got home, I was surprised to find that two of the four burgers were missing! I laughed about it... until I turned the box around and saw that it wasn't "4 Veggie Patties" it was "4+ Veggies" in "2 Veggie Patties." — This has got to be one of the most deceptive packages I've ever seen. It's the same exact size as other boxes containing 4 burgers... then they put "4" on the front above the contents... so unless you really read it, you'll think it contains four burgers. But you only get two, and the box is less than half full. LESS THAN HALF FULL!

A mostly-empty box of falafel burgers.

A mostly-empty box of falafel burgers.

As mad as I am at the company... I am more mad at Safeway for selling this deceptive bullshit in their stores. $5.50 for TWO veggie patties. Unreal. I paid more for an EMPTY BOX than anything else. I would have NEVER bought this stupid crap if I knew I was getting mostly air... no matter how good they taste (or don't).

   
• Bullseye! I really, REALLY hope that when Charlie Cox comes back as Daredevil on Disney+ that they get Wilson Bethel back to play Bullseye. Benjamin Poindexter's downfall and descent in the third season of "Daredevil" was a difficult sell. It took an actor of real talent to pull it off, and Bethel managed it flawlessly. His every move... the way he spoke... everything slowwwwly changes as Dex's world falls apart... you could SEE it happening. The Kingpin knew what buttons to push and how to break him and you could FEEL it happening as you watched it happening...

Wilson Bethel as Bullseye confronting The Kingpin of Crime.

This added a level of tragedy to the character which made him go above being superficial and one-note. Bethel deserves another shot at Bullseye after all his brilliant build-up.

   
• HAAAAAA! This was funnier than I expected it to be...

What's funny is that Douglas Adams did something similar to his ASL interpreter at a book reading. He picked a chapter that had outrageous character names... said them really fast... then quickly looked over at the interpreter to see how she managed it.

   
• Halo?? I've been playing "Halo" since before "Halo" existed. Bungie, the video game studio now owned by Microsoft which birthed the mega-popular series of games, was originally a Mac games developer. And the precursor to "Halo" was "Marathon." I obsessed over "Marathon" and its sequels... then transitioned to "Halo" once it became an Xbox franchise. The latest, "Halo Infinite" is yet another feather in Bungie's cap (I got an Xbox S just to play it). It's a great game that's worth your valuable time. Given all that history, I was anxiously awaiting the Paramount+ TV series "Halo"...

...only to be rewarded with a pile of crap. =sigh= I guess getting a truly good adaptation of a video game is just never going to happen. Maybe I'll tune in again for the season finale, but right now I wasted enough of my time getting through the first episode.

   
Let's see if I can get through my Sunday without having to take a nap.

   

Moon Knight

Posted on Wednesday, March 30th, 2022

Dave!Last night Disney+ unleashed the first episode of Marvel Studio's Moon Knight at midnight. And of course I stayed up to watch it, not getting to bed until after 1am.

I had some pretty high expectations, because the previews all looked so darn good. Plus I'm a fan of the original comic book character upon which the show is based...

The first episode has precious little actual Moon Knight in it (he appears at the very end). The entire episode (the first of six) is focusing on Steven Grant, a nervous worker from a museum gift shop who is hearing voices and having a tough time discerning dreams from reality. When he starts losing time and waking up in inexplicable locations in the middle of events he doesn't remember... well... it's all going to come crashing down on the guy eventually.

Marvel Studios is going for kinda a horror vibe this time, and it's darn cool. Thankfully they put in the money to get a talent like Oscar Isaac to carry the series, because the show would have crumbled if they just plopped in any ol' actor. I sincerely hope that they will have Moon Knight appearing in other Marvel shows and movies. The character would bring a very different mood anywhere he appears.

Worth tuning into for sure.

   

Bullet Sunday 757

Posted on Sunday, April 3rd, 2022

Dave!Don't worry about the world, worry about me... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• TREK! Star Trek: Strange New Worlds looks SO good...

Here's hoping that Paramount+ doesn't turn it to whiny bullshit like they did with Star Trek: Discovery (that show started amazing too, but has devolved into the worst Star Trek ever).

   
• le Carré! I never saw The Night Manager 2016 mini-series adaptation of the le Carré novel... but it's on Amazon Prime Streaming, so I've had it running today. It was very good. The performances are all sublime. And that ending... delicious...

If you're looking for binge-worthy television and like the spy genre, it's worth a look.

   
• Holy! A while back, a-ha came up as one of my favorite bands and I commented that it's such a shame that so few people know of their albums after their smash-hit first release. It remains some of my favorite music ever made. AND EVER SINCE I have had their song Holy Ground stuck in my head. But not just the song (though I've always found it gorgeous and haunting) what's stuck there is a crappy fan edit that mashes up the studio recording with the video of a live performance and scenes from the movie "Troy." It contextualizes both the song and the film in a way that elevates them both...

I wish it was available as a hi-res, better-quality video, because it really is beautiful. And I'm dying to know how the person who cut this together came up with the idea.

   
• Fooling'! Sometimes you kinda have to wish that April fools' jokes were reality, right?

OREO Cookie Cream in a HEINZ packet!

I hope I never see this in grocery stores, because I will buy it in bulk and smear this stuff on everything I eat.

   
• Mavericky! I hate to say it... but this actually looks like it's going to be good. It's certainly going to have plenty of edge-of-your-seat action, it looks like...

Very cool that they got Val Kilmer to appear. Though, much to my horror, the only thing that enters my head any more when I hear "Maverick" is this...

Lord. And apparently she (Palin, not Tina Fey) is running for office again. Or something. I'm too afraid to look into it.

   
• Horse Dewormed! Wow. I may shit my pants in disbelief.

   
And speaking of shitting my pants, time for me to put away the bullets and see what's being reported in the news.

   

Bullet Sunday 758

Posted on Sunday, April 10th, 2022

Dave!Winter may have come back, but there's warmth in my heart... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Two No More! I wanted taco salad for dinner. I had the lettuce, tomatoes, avocado, cheese, salsa, sour cream, veggie crumbles, thousand islands dressing, and frozen corn... I just needed tortilla chips. So I stopped at the store on my way back from Home Depot. The "$2 ONLY!" Santinas Brand I've been buying forever are now "$2.29 ONLY!"

NOW $2.29!!

I know that prices for all the food I buy is through the roof, but this shook me. "$2 ONLY!" ain't "$2 ONLY!" any more.

   
• Cumin! The "Martha Stewart and Marley Spoon meal service has been a huge source of culinary happiness for me. So many new recipe ideas and flavors. But they keep raising their prices which, on it's own is not a deal-breaker... but they refuse to do anything to protect their ingredients, even after I've made numerous complaints. Nor do they compensate you any more. It used to be that when something was missing or damaged... they'd at least give you a token credit on your next order. Not any more! Your sour cream packet was smashed open and smeared everywhere because it was placed under ice bricks? OH WELL! Missing your carrot? SORRY! Tomatoes pulped by a can of beans? OOPSIES! And so I canceled. And replaced them with "The Cumin Club," and Indian-based food service that you prepare from little packets...

Cumin Club Packets

So far I am quite pleased. Fairly economical, promised authentic flavors, easy to prepare, and tasty (if a little on the spicy side). If you're interested in giving them a try, here's a link that gives us both 15% off.

   
• What? A director I like with a movie starring a bunch of actors I like is usually guaranteed to grab my attention. It is not, however, guaranteed to please. Enter The Bubble...

The Bubble actors yelling in front of a green screen.

A movie about making a movie in the middle of the pandemic... which is supposed to be funny, but is actually about as unfunny as it gets. What a waste of talent all the way around.

   
• Gooshing! Chipotle Mexican Grill keeps sending me emails telling me how close I am to getting enough points for a free entrée. I always order a rice & black bean burrito with salsa, sour cream, guacamole, and extra cheese. But the last burrito I bought was INEDIBLE. I always have to order double tortilla wrap so it doesn't bust open while I'm attempting to eat it... but this time even a double wrap wasn't enough because (and I am not exaggerating here) the entire first half of the burrito was entirely guacamole, sour cream, and salsa. That's it. And how can even two tortillas compete against THAT? — I was half-way through before I hit cheese and rice, so it was just gooshing liquid the entire time. By the time I hit beans, the tortilla had disintegrated. It was one of the grossest things I've ever eaten and I had to dump a bunch of it back in the bag so my clothes didn't look like a murder scene...

The very wrong way to make a burrito.

So... yeah... I guess I'll keep ordering until get my free burrito, but then I'm done. It will just be chips and guac from then onwards. The burritos aren't worth the trauma.

   
• =eyeroll= Real NASA Astronomer Reviews Flat Earth Simulator...

I mean... holt shit. It defies all possible common sense, yet here we are.

   
• Discovery! When you read this fascinating story... be sure to read the caption under the photo: Woman Discovers She Isn't The Biological Mother Of Her Own Children.

   
• Brain Hurty! Veritasium is a YouTube channel that I watch because it's interesting and challenging. Even when Derek breaks down items and concepts into something that I can mostly understand... there's always elements that lay just outside my grasp. This video I've watched at least three times over the years. It's actually not overly-difficult to understand... there's a reference point change that explains things quite well... the thing that I have a hard time grasping is how there exists within science concepts which are absolutely horrifying to contemplate. Such as the idea that there were people thinkning that eventually the earth would flip over...

Now, this turns out not the case... science has an explanation as to why that's not going to happen... but for a while there it seemed like a possibility. And this has me wondering about all the horrifying things that haven't got science to explain it away.

   
And that's all the bullets for today, buckaroo.

   

Reaching for the Moon

Posted on Tuesday, April 12th, 2022

Dave!Welp, we're three episodes into Moon Knight from Marvel Studios on Disney+ and I am most decidedly not impressed. Usually by the half-way point you'd expect an escalation of the story so you can race to the finish line. Well, that ain't happening.

Good Lord is this series awful. How could Marvel Studios take such a cool character... amazing acting talent... fantastic locations... and come up with something THIS boring? It's all talk talk talk talk that ultimately goes nowhere interesting.

And Mr. Knight has gone from badass in the comics to tedious in the television series...

Mr. Knight from Moon Knight

I sure hope that they manage to do something interesting in the back-end three episodes, but given how the latest episode ends, I'm guessing that we've got at least one more episode of Moon Knight without Moon Knight.

What a wasted opportunity. They aimed for Raiders of the Lost Ark but fell way, way short.

There is such a wealth of comic book source material to mine from... but we get this hot mess? I would have rather we got a two hour movie that was tightly tuned instead of six drawn-out episodes of whatever this is.

Comic book shows shouldn't be boring. This is show is boring and sad.

   

Bullet Sunday 759

Posted on Sunday, April 24th, 2022

Dave!Don't you dare touch that dial... because an all new, all YouTube Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Heartstopper! Easily one of the best series I've seen so far in 2022, Heartstopper (Netflix) is about the most adorable TV show you'll find. What really got me is how much of the lives of young people today are invested in immediate feedback from texting. The struggle to put your thoughts and feelings in short little messages... the frustration of not knowing what to say... and the agony of sending something and immediately regretting it... we had absolutely nothing like this in school. Maybe note passing. That's it. The game is entirely different today...

What amazes me most about this show is how many opportunities they had to fall into the Hallmark trap of letting a misunderstanding sabotage their entire relationship, but were actually more adult about talking things out than adults are in Hallmark movies. Refreshing! There's also a guest star playing Nick's mom who may not be a known face to American audiences, but she was a major "get" across the Atlantic, and I was SO happy it wasn't spoiled in the trailer. Worth a watch. 100% Dave Approved television.

   
• Hard Rock Park! I don't have many regrets. But I do regret that I never made it to Hard Rock Park. The year that it opened, my travel calendar was packed, but I had plans to visit the following year. Alas, it closed after a single season. It would become "Freestyle Music Park" for another season before closing permanently. One of the most unique things to ever come out of Hard Rock and I missed it! Then I ran across a couple videos about the park, and regret not making it even more...


Boy. I wish somebody would rescue all that material and published it in a book or something. I could have spent hours going through all that!

   
• Miriwoong! Few things are as sad to me as a language dying out. Because it means an important part of humanity's culture is lost, because in so many ways language is culture. Or at least a very good symptom of it...

I've long been fascinated by languages, and Miriwoong is an example of exactly why I'm fascinated.

   
• Giza! Holy cats I love videos like this. And, let me tell you, that walk into the pyramid is something I will never forget. It was hot, stuffy, and claustrophobic for sure, but it's the fact that the passage could collapse behind you and leave you trapped inside that's the real scary part. What would they do? Rip apart the pyramid to save your life? Yeah, probably not...

Manuel Bravo is a YouTube creator I've never heard of before. But I subscribed after 2 minutes in on this video, only to find his entire channel is magic. Give it a look if this kind of stuff interests you.

   
• Bud! The fact that John Oliver releases short videos like this on the weeks he's off to tide you over until his next show is why his YouTube Channel is a must-subscribe...

I mean. Holy cow. The dogs got super-powers?!? Where have I been?

   
• Space! If you're not excited to bits about the James Webb Space Telescope, it's because you don't understand it properly. Lucky for you, Marques is here to drop some knowledge...

I have gone through so many rabbits in learning about what this incredible telescope is going to do for our understanding of the universe, and all of it is positively mind-boggling.

   
• History! The Statue of Liberty is one of those things that we kinda take for granted. It's there. It's been there for a while. France gave it to us. But there's so much more than that. For a very cool glimpse into all things Lady Liberty, this video is worth a watch...

   
And that's it for year another fascinating Bullet Sunday. Tune in next Sunday where I may... or may not... have even more interesting things to share!

   

Marc Spector, Steven Grant, and… Endings?

Posted on Tuesday, May 3rd, 2022

Dave!I haven't been all that impressed with Moon Knight. Mostly because the show has barely had any Moon Knight in it. And it's perfectly understandable. They tapped an actor of Oscar Isaac's caliber, so covering him up in a mask for six episodes simply wasn't in the cards. No, the reason they needed Oscar Isaac was to have an actor with the chops to portray a character with dissociative identity disorder, which he delivered. As expected.

And now we've reached the end of the road. The final episode aired tonight.

And while it doesn't entirely make up for the fact that they dragged out this show for far, far too long... I have to admit that the payoff was pretty sweet. I just wish that this sixth episode had occurred at the half-way point, because now I really want to see what they do next...

I'm not going to post any major spoilers (though if you're a fan of the comic books, it's not anything entirely unexpected), but I am going to hint at one: part-way through, a little Egyptian girl says in awe "Are you an Egyptian super-hero?!? and it hits pretty hard. Because representation matters. I hope that Marvel stays on this course, because super-heroes are getting played out, and anything new and different is welcome.

   

May The Force…

Posted on Wednesday, May 4th, 2022

Dave!Though I thought the Star Wars prequels were crap, there's some things that came out of them which were undeniably great. Ewan McGregor's take on Obi-Wan Kenobi was one of them (Samuel L. Jackson playing Mace Windu was another, but more on that in a minute).

The official final trailer for the new series was released today in advance of the May 27th premiere, and it looks darn good...

I mean... that's everything you could want from Star Wars, right?

Not entirely...

Samuel L. Jackson has straight-up said that he wants to return as Mace Windu. We found out a month ago that he asked Bryce Dallas Howard to bring the character back...

Samuel L. Jackson as Mace Windu

If Samuel L. Jackson is willing... and if they don't give him his own series where Mace Windu is the baddest muthafucker in the galaxy... then Disney+ is just flat out worthless.

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Strange New Worlds

Posted on Thursday, May 5th, 2022

Dave!I'm just going to come out and say it... Star Trek: Strange New Worlds is my favorite Trek since the original series, and I've only seen the first episode. This is kinda how I felt about Star Trek: Discovery before it went from being phenomenally interesting, exciting, and brilliant in the Season 01 to being a phenomenally whiny, weepy, and dull pile of shit in Season 03. Disco has become so bad in Season 04 that I can't even bring myself to watch it. Such a pity.

But back to Strange New Worlds...

The cast, as we've seen from their appearance on Disco is sublime. The visuals and special effects are absolutely gorgeous. And the writing is whip-smart with a bit of fun. In short, it's absolutely everything you could possibly want out of a TV show.

Finally Star Trek is Star Trek again...

Eschewing the season-wide arcs that Disco decided to adopt, Strange New Worlds is back to episodic television which neatly wraps up the story by the end of the episode. Despite my love of how Disco started out, I think this is the format which works best for Trek.

The debut episode, aptly titled Strange New Worlds, is about a First Contact mission that goes terribly wrong for Number One, and it's up to Pike, Spock, and Co. to make things right. It's not even remotely a spoiler to say that it all works out, but it's how it works out that makes this such good Trek. It's hopeful and inspiring as it was when Trek was new.

Plus it's got Spock in it.

   

Bullet Sunday 761

Posted on Sunday, May 8th, 2022

Dave!It only seems as though we're descending into a hells cape from which there's no escape, but don't let that get you down... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Water! Looks amazing, as we knew it would...

And no Paparus font to be found!

But the real question is... Will it have a decent story? Time will tell.

   
• KHAAAAAAN! Couldn't agree more...

It was so masterfully done that few other movies have managed to top it... despite there being a huge advancement in special effects since the movie was made.

   
• Virgin?! During the boring, irrelevant bits of The Offer (of which there are MANY), I have been running through the latest TikTok meme. It's glorious. They have a bunch of geeks ridiculing their own hobbies and lives with the "ARE YOU A VIRGIN?" sound (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@mattwhets #duet with @jurassicah they didn’t let me show my handmade fantasy map pottery #writertok #fanatsy #booktok #writer ♬ original sound - jurassicah

These are my people! I just love people who have a sense of humor about themselves.

   
• New Julia! Much to my happiness, it was announced that HBO Max has renewed Julia for a second season. If you haven't seen it yet, it's a series exploring Julia Child's early days as a television star, and it's gold...

This is a show that you really just don't want to end. And now we know that it isn't over just yet.

   
• Thor Four More Thor! I'll bet everybody who was mouthing off over Natalie Portman not being buff enough to play Thor are feeling pretty silly right now...

Jane Foster as Thor and Thor Odinson as Thor!

This looks fantastic, and I cannot wait to see what Taika Waititi has done this time around.

   
• Cosigned! Yeah, pretty much this...

It is fucking horrific that Roe vs. Wade is set to be overturned... and this is coming from somebody who personally doesn't endorse abortion outside of cases of rape, incest, or the health of the mother being endangered. But, for the millionth time, my personal feelings have no fucking bearing whatsoever on what somebody else chooses for themselves... and neither do the feelings of legislators and members of the fucking Supreme Court.

   
• BRAINS! Well here's something you should not watch before going to bed...

And, if you did, sleep tight!

   
And now I'm going to bed. AT LEAST I HOPE SO!

   

Bullet Sunday 761

Posted on Sunday, May 15th, 2022

Dave!You can't keep a good blogger down, even in the middle of your blog not allowing you to upload images for some reason... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• WAAAAAHH! The bastards at CBS canceled Magnum P.I.. The show's first season was incredible. The second nearly as good. They faltered a bit in the third season, but rebound beautifully in the fourth (and now final) season. What's interesting is that the final episode tied up a few things and answered a question which everybody had since the beginning... will Magnum and Higgins ever get together?

Magnum and Higgins walking and smiling.

What's so shitty about all this is that Magnum P.I. was a fairly sold performer. Not stellar, but more successful than some of the stuff which gets renewed. Guess CBS is dedicating themselves to another shitty reality show that they can buy for cheap and cancel after a year. Well, duly noted. The entire cast was gold, I can't wait to see where they end up next.

   
• Lost! Okay... maybe it's the Hallmark fan in me, but I really liked this one! Lost City is funny, adventurous, and surprisingly sweet...

The Lost City Movie Poster

Everybody went all-in on their roles. Sandra Bullock, Daniel Radcliffe, Brad Pitt, all great... but it was Channing Tatum who completely owned his character. He was unafraid to play dumb as a box of rocks, and I loved it. If you see the movie (on Paramount+, the worst of the worst of streaming services), be sure to watch the credits for a scene that's pretty great.

   
• Remo! Fred Ward, Star of The Right Stuff, Tremors, Dies at 79. Except Fred Ward will forever be Remo Williams to me...


Though having Joel Grey play Korean will always be cringe.

And he was a big part of why Big Business ended up working as well as it did...

Fred Ward and Lily Tomlin in Big Business

There were other roles, of course. The guy did great work for a long time. Rest In Peace, sir.

   
• Heartstopper! This actually is hope...

@merrowchild At this point, who's isn't reading #heartstopper ?! #waterstones #shortstory #booksellerlife #aliceoseman #merrowchild #retailstories ♬ Heartstopper - Adiescar Chase

Kids are going to believe whatever they're taught to believe. But access to information is easier than ever, and sometimes the truth wins out.

   
• Fruit! When I was a kid, my mom used to pack little tins of Dole fruit in my lunch. Now, of course, they've switched to plastic like everything else. But here's the problem... there is no way... NO WAY AT ALL... to open these little containers without juice pouring out everywhere...

I've been douched by pear juice.

I have tried everything. Usually I go to the sink to open them, but when I'm trapped on a call and can't leave, I have to open it here. This is me trying to be my most careful when opening my pears... FUCKERS!!! Now I look like I had an accident in the bathroom or something.

   
• Moose! YESSSSSS! WHY IS THIS NOT AVAILABLE IN THE US?

Mayo Mousse. Genius.

   
I'm guessing eventually I'll figure out how to post this. Probably.

   

Bullet Sunday 762

Posted on Sunday, May 22nd, 2022

Dave!The sun may be shining outside where I'm at, but I'm not out enjoying it as I should be... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Breakfast! The season finale of Saturday Night Live was fairly mediocre... despite having Natasha Lyonne hosting and great send-offs for Kate McKinnon, Aidy Bryant, and Pete Davidson (and apparently Kyle Mooney is leaving as well?). HOWEVER... it introduced me to Japanese Breakfast, a band I never knew existed but fell in love with immediately. This has to be one of my favorite SNL performances ever...


Kate McKinnon waves good bye.

   
• The Valet! I'm a huge fan of Eugenio Derbez, and his new movie The Valet on Hulu is great. At first I worried that it wasn't taking advantage of his talents, but boy did he bring it in the end...

Worth your valuable time. And we're also getting a second season of his show "Acapulco," which is something else you should be watching.

   
• Baymax! My favorite animated character since Stitch from Lelo & Stitch and Sully from Monsters, Inc. has his own show...

And how great is it that they kept the other characters from Big Hero 6 to be in it as well?

   
• Umbrella Academy 3! I've been in awe at just how good the Netflix adaptation of the Umbrella Academy comics have been... actually improving on the material in some ways. And now we're at Season 03 and it's looking as cool and bonkers as ever...

With Netflix being an absolute shit-show as of late, and their tradition of killing shows after 2 or 3 seasons, I'm more than a little worried about getting Season 04.

   
• She-Hulk! This is what happens when a show looks like it has a very good chance of exceeding your expectations. People of earth, I give you She-Hulk: Attorney at Law...

   
• Marvel! And now that Ms. Marvel is nearly upon us, Marvel Studios is giving us a bigger taste of what's to come...

I. Cannot. Wait.

If nothing else, casting Tatiana Maslany in the lead is 100% pure win.

   
• Heartstopper Redux! And lastly, the news I've been waiting for ever since I watched the show... Netflix has renewed Heartstopper for two seasons...

Announcement of Heartstopper's renewal on Netflix by Netflix.

While this is incredible news... had they waited any longer, the actors would be getting too old to play their characters... it's also a bit disappointing. From my estimation, they'll need four seasons to get through all the graphic novel material which has defined Nick & Charlie's relationship, so why not renew for three? And boy oh boy do I hope that they fold in more material for Charlie's sister, Tori (or, better yet) give her a series of her own and adapt Solitaire). In any event, not all the news coming out of Netflix is bad, it seems.

   
And now I need to get outside and tie up some of my flowers before they take over my yard!

   

Bullet Sunday 763

Posted on Sunday, May 29th, 2022

Dave!A three day weekend (for a lot of us here in the good ol' U.S. of A. isn't even the best thing to look forward to this fine Sunday... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• You're Our Only Hope! I was not expecting the world from the new Obi-Wan Kenobi series on Disney+, even though it was focusing on one of the best parts of the shitty Star Wars prequels. But, then again, The Mandalorian proved that it could be good if they wanted it bad enough...

Obi-Wan Kenobi Poster

Well, apparently they did want it bad enough, because the show is looking darn good from the first two (or six) episodes which have aired. I don't want to spoil a single frame, as I was careful to not learn too much about it before it started running. Suffice to say that the premise for the series is not what I expected, despite being a very good one (and kinda obvious). Even if you've given up on Star Wars, this might be worth a look.

   
• More Hope? This past week was Star Wars Celebration, the annual lovefest for A Galaxy Far, Far Away. The most interesting thing to come out of it was the trailer for Andor, which I've been anticipating for what seems like an eternity...

Looks great, doesn't it?

   
• Mavericky! Top Gun is one of those seminal 80's films that I have seen multiple times since first seeing it in the theater. When they came out with a sequel: Top Gun: Maverick I kept my expectations in check, because it seemed absurd that they could possibly have more to say. Or at least not enough to warrant a sequel. But it was actually quite good despite covering a lot of the same territory. This is largely thanks to very cool practical fighter plane shots which were far better than a bunch of CGI special effect shots could have ever been...

Tom Cruise in a fighter plane cockpit.

Tom Cruise was... well... Tom Cruise. Jennifer Connelly was good as she always is. And Miles Teller, who hasn't impressed me much in anything he's ever done, inhabited his role as the son of Goose in a way that really made you believe he could be the son of Meg Ryan and Anthony Edwards. Do I think it was risk getting COVID to go see? Probably not. But it should have no problem making my best-of list for 2022 because of the huge dose of retro thrills it provides.

   
• Thanks, Jims! While there's a lot of attention being focused on Obi-Wan Kenobi, Top Gun: Maverick, and the return of Stranger Things, I can tell you right now that the entertainment to beat is Shoresy. Based on the unseen (but not unheard) hockey-playing character from Letterkenny, it's a fantastic (and very funny) look at "the dirtiest player in the game"...

The cast of Shoresy with their missing teeth in a lockeroom.

If you're a Letterkenny fan, this is a no-brainer. But even if you aren't this is nice diversion from the horrors of the real world.

   
• Fletch! I was very sad to hear that Andrew "Fletch" Fletcher from Depeche Mode had died. As one of my all-time favorite bands, I've collected all their music and have seen them in concert a half-dozen times. Rest in Peace, sir...

Tom Cruise in a fighter plane cockpit.

   
• Less Strange? And speaking of Stranger Things... I'm more than a little disappointed in Season 04. Each episode is bloated in a bad way, focusing more on distraction, filler, and "side-quests" than the show I was hoping to tune in for. And it's like why? Why deviate from what made the show so darn good in Seasons 01-03? I guess everybody wanted a bigger paycheck and the only way to get it was to film more material? I dunno. The show isn't exactly bad... but I'm really hoping they stick the landing in the final two episodes in five weeks to make this time investment worthwhile.

   
• Subway. This video from Last Week Tonight is fascinating stuff. And you OWE it to yourself to watch the Korean Meatball Drama at the end! Glorious...

The fact that Subway knew that Jared was a kid-raping pedophile and ignored it so he could keep selling their sandwiches means that they can fuck off forever. Interesting to note that Kidfuckers is the ONLY chain restaurant in my small town, which is just further evidence that they do indeed push their franchises to the breaking point and put them everywhere.

   
Until next Sunday then...

   

Talking Points Redundancy

Posted on Friday, June 3rd, 2022

Dave!Today was the day that Amazon dropped the first three episodes of The Boys for their third season. As the first episode begins, it shows everybody's favorite sociopath, Homelander, on an apology tour for having dated Stormfront, who ended up being a psychotic white supremacist and literal Nazi in the previous season. It's told in montage, where Homelander is on several different television shows delivering the exact same talking points over... and over... and over... and over again.

Which is exactly how it works in Real Life.

We've seen it many times from disgraced politicians, actors, pastors, and anybody who achieves a bit of fame and then goes on to fuck it up.

Billy Butcher with powers from The Boys Series 3

At first I was upset at this, because it felt very much as if the show was fighting to get back to the status quo and the same old stories we've seen in the first two seasons. Homelander loves fame and adoration more than anything on earth, and he'll do whatever it takes to keep his hold on the people who love him.

But then we get to the point where Homelander is no longer able to be kept in check by threats to his popularity, and I completely changed my mind. So long as The Boys doesn't try to backtrack their way out of this new development, this could make for a very interesting season.

And if it all falls apart?

Ms. Marvel is dropping on June 8th, so I think I'll survive.

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Bullet Sunday 764

Posted on Sunday, June 5th, 2022

Dave!Don't let the pouring rain, thunder, and lightning stop you from today's bullets, since it's not stopping me... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Best Trek! I cannot process the fact that there's a Star Trek show that I like better than the original series. It's inconceivable. But holy shit! Star Trek: Strange New Worlds on Paramount+ is blowing my mind episode after episode. And Episode 05 is just next-level good. Funny as hell, and incredibly satisfying to watch. How in the heck did they come up with this? And Spock... it's just... Ethan Peck is killing it. He's wonderful.

Spock and T'Pring on Star Trek.

Now I worry that they're going to take a great show in its first season and flush it down the fucking toilet like they did with whiny, boring Star Trek: Discovery. Hopefully the show-runners think better than that, because I would sure miss Strange New Worlds.

   
• Marmalade! Okay... this is really great...

Wishing a happy Platinum Jubilee to Her Majesty.

   
• More Death! HBO has (finally) renewed Our Flag Means Death for a second season...

Blackbeard finds a friend.

Probably the best show you haven't watched. Yet.

   
• TAPS! Pretty much this, yeah (Here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@maxtheverygoodboy Is it working yet?? No?!? #satire #nyc #news #rip #texas #trending ♬ original sound - maxtheverygoodboy

So many of our politicians are useless pieces of crap. It's amazing that people have been conned into accepting it... even defending it.

   
• Helpless! Used to be that you just held down the sleep/wake button until your iPhone force-restarts. Now if you do that, you end up calling 911. I can never remember the new combo (you up, vol down, THEN hold sleep/wake) so I asked my iPhone. BUT OF COURSE THE FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT IS ZERO HELP...

Jesus Christ, Apple... just fucking give up on Siri already. She can't do shit.

   
• False Prophets! All these people reaching to find Biblical meaning in shit that is easily Googleable just to fit their idiotic narrative is mind boggling...

@maklelan Responding to @FedUpGear #maklelan836 ♬ original sound - Dan McClellan

Just fuck off with your stupid bullshit already.

   
And now back to our regularly-scheduled thunderstorm.

   

The Sandman Cometh…

Posted on Monday, June 6th, 2022

Dave!One of my favorite comic books of all time is Alpha Flight... in particular the Vol. 3 version by Scott Lobdell and Clayton Henry. Their story would be a perfect fit for a really good Disney+ series, so I keep hoping that one day they will show up.

And they really should, because I think Canadians would appreciate seeing their own super-group brought to life...

Jenny flopped over showing her belly.

Another of my favorite comic books... The Sandman has already been developed as a series for Netflix, and it looks very good indeed. The visuals are highly reminiscent of the source material...

Needless to say I'm quite excited about seeing it, and August 5th seems a long time away.

Fortunately, we've got Ms. Marvel coming in two days, Thor: Love and Thunder coming July 8th, and Season 04 of What We Do in The Shadows coming on July 12th to help occupy our time until August...

Also? The sequel to one of my favorite comic book adaptations ever, The Old Guard, starts filming this month... assumably for release in 2023 some time. But before that? She-Hulk: Attorney at Law debuts on August 17th, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever coming November 11th, and Nick Fury's Secret Invasion (assumably) shortly thereafter!

An exciting time to be a comic book nerd, that's for sure.

   

It’s Ms. Marvelous!

Posted on Thursday, June 9th, 2022

Dave!When it comes to translating their comic book properties to non-comic media, Marvel has done a darn good job when it comes to the compromises which have to be made. The way costumes look... the way powers work... the way continuity has been built... choices have to be made every step of the way, and there has been shockingly little that I've not felt was smart, cool, and appropriate.

Ms. Marvel, based on a highly successful character from the comics, is an American girl of Pakistani Muslim heritage who idolizes Captain Marvel and wants to be a super-hero just like her. Then one day she gets her shot, and her life becomes a balance between being a hero and being a girl trying to fit into her life and school while still holding true to her family's traditions and values.

In the comics, Ms. Marvel is a "polymorph" who has the ability to stretch and embiggen parts of her body. She got her abilities after being exposed to the Terrigen Mists, which is how Marvel's Inhumans characters gain powers (meaning that Ms. Marvel is technically an Inhuman).

In the television series, Ms. Marvel finds a family heirloom (a "bangle") which gives her the ability to make cosmic energy constructs. You can see it on her wrist here...

Jenny flopped over showing her belly.

Now, even though her powers are very, very different in the MCU, she still uses them in a way that harkens back to the comic books. If she wants to catch somebody, she generates a giant hand out of cosmic energy and stretches it out to make the catch. As opposed to making her actual hand grow to giant size and then stretching her actual arm out to make the catch.

I know some fanboys are going to be upset by this change, but I think it's pretty smart. First of all, her powers look kinda ridiculous in the comic books and probably wouldn't translate very well to television and movies. Second of all, part of her powers is basically a copy of Mister Fantastic's stretching abilities, which means that the Marvel Cinematic Universe would have two people with a confusingly-similar gimmick once The Fantastic Four movie arrives.

Which is to say that the MCU Ms. Marvel is more "Green Lantern" than "Mister Fantastic."

I'm not sure if I approve of the whole "cosmic bangle" source of her powers, but the powers she has been given I definitely approve of.

I also approve very much of the show itself.

Ms. Marvel streamlines the comic book narrative into something that works for television very well. The core aspects of her character are very much the same, and that's more important than most anything else because it's those aspects which make her unique.

Visually the show is quite good... using auxiliary graphic elements to give the series a unique flavor and make it fit the youthful vibe of the character.

The cast is phenomenal. Iman Vellani IS Ms. Marvel, and they fill out her family, friends, and acquaintances with equally-capable actors. It seems as if Marvel Studios is simply incapable of making bad casting decisions...

We've only gotten one episode to look at, but the storytelling is on-point and things move at a brisk enough pace that the episode doesn't feel bogged down (as what happens with so many origin stories). But the best surprise of all? MS. MARVEL IS ACTUALLY IN THE SHOW! After the way Moon Knight had practically no actual Moon Knight in it, I was mortified that this might be a new trend. But nope!

I don't know that Ms. Marvel will overtake Hawkeye as my favorite MCU Disney+ series... but maybe it will get there. The pieces are certainly in place to make it a fantastic show, so fingers crossed.

   

Bullet Sunday 765

Posted on Sunday, June 12th, 2022

Dave!It's another cold and rainy Sunday, but I'm not letting it get me down... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• More Bargains! ZOMFG! Keith, Evan, and Shea are back with more Bargain Block! Easily my favorite home renovation show, I was thrilled that it was renewed for a second season... and would subscribe to discovery+ just to watch this one program!

It will be interesting to see how the concept of the show has to change to meet with rising house prices. The entire show was built around the idea of taking homes so trashed that they could be bought for almost nothing and turning them around. But now even trashed houses cost money.

   
• RITZOREO? What the-?!?

Why? I'm not going to say it's terrible because I haven't tried it... but this just looks like a complete disaster. Even so, if I see these I will buy them.

   
• Strange! If the new Thor and Black Panther films weren't being released this year, this would be the movie I most want to see...

There needs to be more science fiction animated films. Let me restate that... there needs to be more good science fiction animated films. Hopefully this is good and performs well so we get more.

   
• Welp! This is actually kinda scary.

But what isn't scary now-a-days?

   
• Smart! Hacks fell apart for me in the second season. It just kinda meandered around, and the "life" that the first season excelled at felt more sporadic. But boy oh boy did they stick the landing on the last episode of this season. It really has me hoping that HBO Max picks it up for a third season, because the way it ended felt final... but actually opens up some interesting avenues for all the characters...

Plus... Jean Smart.

   
• Ouch! As a huge fan of Ben Wishaw, I was compelled to watch his latest series This is Going to Hurt. He plays a London doctor working in the gynecology department in a busy NHS hospital. It has graphic depictions of medical procedures that are tough to watch. The way that women get ripped into for caesarean births is unbelievably rough... almost violent. But even a straightforward birth looks double-tough. From this perspective, it's probably a good idea for men to watch this show and gain a new perspective on what women go through giving birth. It's probably NOT a good idea, however, for expectant mothers to watch this. Because... damn!

I honestly don't know how Ben Wishaw makes his roles look so effortless... even when they are wildly complex like this one is.

   
• Happy Tenth! This past week marked the tenth anniversary of my first tattoo! I had wanted a cartoon skull and crossbones tattoo forever, and the first drawing I made of it was 26 years before it was actually inked. The only thing I changed from my original drawing was that I made it bolder with much thicker lines because I didn't want it to look like something I could cover up easily. I never once changed my mind about what I wanted in 26 years, so I was committed and didn't want to half-ass it...

Dave's Tat

One of these days I really need to get back to San Francisco for another tattoo. I have zero regrets on any work I've had done, and my only true regret is that I didn't start getting tattooed earlier so I'd have more ink on me.

   
And on that happy note... hope your weekend was a good one now that it's almost over.

   

Marvel-ous Part Deux

Posted on Tuesday, June 14th, 2022

Dave!=sigh=

The second episode of “Ms. Marvel” was wonderful from start to finish. AND YES I STAYED UP UNTIL MIDNIGHT SO I COULD WATCH IT! The cast... story... cinematography... all incredible. This is quickly getting to be right up there with Hawkeye as the best Disney+ series for me. It's inconceivable that this is Iman Vellani's first acting job! She plays Kamala Khan so effortlessly and believably. Well, as believably as you can get with a comic book movie...

There have been numerous changes from the comic book to accommodate video media... but there were more than a couple scenes in the second episode that were right out of the source material, which was wonderful to see. The showrunners are absolutely respecting the spirit of the original character in very good ways.

If you're not watching Ms. Marvel, you really should be.

   

Bullet Sunday 766

Posted on Sunday, June 19th, 2022

Dave!Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there! As for me? I don't get to celebrate being a cat-dad... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• Tokio! I first heard of the German band Tokio Hotel years ago when I was in Italy, I think. They were getting some notice from their debut album Schrei (probably because they were so young when they recorded it). It's a dang good album if you like hard rock. Fast-forward to yesterday and I happened across a new song from them called When We Were Younger which was quite surprising for three reasons. 1) It's in English. 2) It's pure pop. 3) It's actually really good, and I've been playing it on repeat for a day now...

Great, right? But it's the end where they say "Together since 2001" where it kinda gets you. All those photos are of the band as kids... essentially growing up before your eyes...

Tokio Hotel as kids!

Tokio Hotel as kids!

I love stuff like this.

   
• Smooth! Welp. Cooper Raiff has 1000% done it again. How he manages to not take the easy or expected route... but still manages to create such satisfying movies is beyond me. All this and he's actually a really good actor on top of of being an exceptional writer and director. The setup for Cha Cha Real Smooth is like films you've seen dozens of times before... and yet the payoff is so much better because it's not like films you've seen dozens of times before. You end up feeling completely different about some characters at the end than you did in the beginning, and that takes true talent to accomplish because most times when this is attempted it just feels so fake and unearned.

In both Shithouse and Cha Cha Real Smooth there's that one scene which really crushes you. And in Cha Cha Real Smooth you never see it coming. Really looking forward to whatever Cooper Raiff does next.

   
• She's a Beauty! Well, you are (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@callmegrand

You are beautiful❤️ from “Man of the World”

♬ Sunroof - Nicky Youre & dazy

Ukrainian and Czech are close enough to Russian that I got those. I haven't studied Japanese in forever, but that one was easy. I thought I would have had a shot at Chile, Puerto Rico, and Spain... but the only other one I got was USA!

   
• Raise the Roof! I've never been to The Palace theater in New York City. But I have stayed at The Doubletree hotel that was built around it. I had read a while ago that they were planning on doing something extraordinary... raise The Palace 30 feet in the air so they can build a new hotel and entertainment complex around it. That's now been completed, and how they went about it is fascinating...

I'm not a "Broadway guy" but I admit to wanting to see how this all works out. It all looks pretty darn incredible.

   
• Oh Jodie! I missed the entire last season of Graham Norton because Philo didn't record it. On the episode I'm watching now, Coldplay is singing "My Universe" (with a cool BTS video background) and it's great. BUT THE BEST PART is that Coldplay super-fan Jodie Whittaker from Doctor Who was on the show, and this happened...

After it was over, they went back to the couch and Jodie mentioned that she has her alarm set for next week so she can try to get tickets for when Coldplay is playing Wembley. Well, needless to say, Jodie now has tickets to go to see ColdPlay. And it will be one of the greatest missed opportunities ever if they don't get her on stage!

   
• Seriously? BWAH HA HA HA HAAAAA! no.

   
• This time... There's a very good sleight of hand magician on TikTok named Mat Franco who is constantly having to re-do his tricks because people believe that he's not being honest about what he's doing. Like this one, for example (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@matfrancomagic Reply to @everythingballard ♬ original sound - Mat Franco

And here we go again (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...

@matfrancomagic Reply to @dembirdsbedirty ♬ nhạc nền - AK乂Duty

Fortunately, the guy is patient enough to keep humoring everybody. But you'd think that eventually people would just enjoy the show.

   
• Pixar! I responded to a meme where people were ranking all the Pixar films. My Top 5 hadn't changed in years... until Luca came out, which I loved...

  1. Monsters, Inc.
  2. The Incredibles
  3. Up
  4. Toy Story 3
  5. Luca
  6. Toy Story
  7. Finding Nemo
  8. Coco
  9. The Incredibles 2
  10. WALL-E
  11. Brave
  12. Encanto
  13. Ratatouille
  14. Toy Story 2
  15. Turning Red
  16. Finding Dory
  17. Soul
  18. Monsters University
  19. Inside Out
  20. Onward
  21. Toy Story 4
  22. Cars
  23. The Good Dinosaur
  24. A Bugs Life
  25. Cars 2
  26. Cars 3

Yeah, not a fan of the Cars films. But even a bad Pixar film is better than most.

   
And now back to your regularly scheduled Sunday.

   

Streaming Overload

Posted on Tuesday, June 21st, 2022

Dave!Just mentally preparing for tomorrow

That's when Umbrella Academy Season 03, Ms. Marvel Episode 03, Obi-Wan Kenobi Episode 06, Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, and who knows what else is releasing.

I'd take the day off from work... but, alas...

   

Streaming for Two

Posted on Wednesday, June 22nd, 2022

Dave!Last night I waited until midnight for Ms. Marvel, as usual, then saved everything else for today when I could find time. It was a lot of TV packed into a day...

Umbrella Academy Season 03
While it had some very good moments, this fell short of the first two seasons for me. Not as twisty, smart, and interesting. But there were also some changes that surprised me. In the first two seasons I loathed Vanya and loved Allison. This year that completely reversed... Loved Viktor, outright detested Allison (fucking hated her this season). But my favorite in all seasons is Number Five, even though he had less to do this time around. I can't go much further without delving into spoiler territory, but suffice to say I enjoyed the third season and sincerely hope we get a fourth.

Ms. Marvel Episode 03
Beautiful, joyous, and clever. And boy did they really go there with Kamala using her powers! Really great to see, as I was starting to worry that they were going to pull a Moon Knight and not really do anything interesting with her. I don't know if this quite eclipses how amazing I found Hawkeye to be, but I am already hoping for another season after she appears in The Marvels.

Obi-Wan Kenobi Episode 06
I've enjoyed every episode of this series despite the fact that there really couldn't be any surprises since we know how everything has to turn out. Even the "surprise" at the end wasn't much of a surprise because it was foreshadowed heavily in one of the earlier films. Despite this being a series that was meant to be complete, I would not at all object to seeing what else happened with Obi-Wan before Star Wars happened. Ewan McGregor is just too darn good to let go.

Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness
On second viewing, I actually appreciate this movie more than I initially did... even though I still think that Wanda was done dirty. I enjoyed this flick the first time around, sure, but it just didn't feel that the multiverse was used to great effect. Spider-Man: No Way Home was smarter about it, and this one just felt like an afterthought. That being said, America Chavez managed to fit into the story in a way that felt meaningful, and seeing the Illuminati portrayed so beautifully left me wanting more. A lot more.

And now... it's 1:00am and time for bed. Past time for bed. I'll just have to make up for all the sleep I didn't get tomorrow night.

   

Scrubs Intern

Posted on Thursday, June 23rd, 2022

Dave!One of my favorite TV shows of all times is Scrubs

Every two or three years I take a run through the entire series just because the writing is so incredibly smart and creative (even though some of the language is less than PC and hasn't aged well). After work I started the series again because I saw Brendan Fraser in something and was reminded how he was in the best three episodes of Scrubs that ever aired...

Brendan Fraser on Scrubs

It's kinda a minor miracle that this show was so good from the very first episode. That doesn't happen very often. Veronica Mars... The Finder... Limitless... Sports Night... and, unlike other TV shows that started amazing with the first episode but then took a nose-dove after a few seasons (Alias, Twin Peaks, and the rest), Scrubs was relatively consistent until the end. And then the very end after the show was canceled and renewed on another network.

Oh crap. Now I want to watch all these other shows for the hundredth time.

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Bullet Sunday 767

Posted on Sunday, June 26th, 2022

Dave!The heat is on and my air conditioning is struggling to keep up... and so am I! But never fear... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

   
• SPACE LEGO! LEGO is re-releasing a couple of their most popular sets from days past, but updating them with modern pieces so that they appeal to modern LEGO consumers. The one I am sorely tempted to get is the "Galaxy Explorer"... one of my favorite sets of all time...

It looks so good. Similar to what made the old set so great... but with some very cool changes. But, alas, that's a wad of cash I don't have burning a hole in my pocket!

   
• Day-Old Goodness! Why is it that baked spaghetti always tastes better the next day? Yesterday I made garlic bread from scratch and put together a nice baked spaghetti to go with it. The stuff was amazing. But today's lunch? Even better!

Delicious baked spaghetti!

I cook spaghetti as usual... but make my own sauce so I can use tomato paste instead of thinner tomato purée. Mix it together with the noodles and cheese. Put into an oven-proof container with lid (I use a large skillet), then bake at 325º for a half-hour. That way you get a lovely dry "sauce" that's really concentrated and sticking to the noodles instead of making a wet, sloppy mess everywhere. I top with toasted almond slices, parmesan, diced chives and Italian parsley. Food of the gods!

   
• A Legend Passes. I forgot to mention last Bullet Sunday how sad I was to learn that legendary comic book artist Tim Sale passed away. The guy was only 66, so this is a tough loss to take. Tim Sale was highly gifted, and worked on some characters and titles that cemented his upper-echelon status with fans. Rest in peace, sir.

   
• ALEXA, STOP!!! Alexa used to be so good. But then Amazon Alexa added a bunch of shitty bloat that nobody gives a crap about to fuck over the service. She regularly gets simple requests wrong now EVEN WHEN SHE UNDERSTANDS WHAT YOU SAID, whereas Google Assistant ACTUALLY WORKS. Embarrassing as fuck for Amazon to just toss it all away like this. Also? Alexa acknowledged the command in my bedroom (where I’m at)... but then played the song in the bathroom down the hall? WTF?!?

Alexa heard 'Play Dance by Fly by Midnight'

At first I thought... "Well, maybe Amazon Music doesn't have the song?" But nope. There it is...

Dance by Fly by Midnight exists in the Alexa catalog for Amazon Music

I never had problems like this even two years ago. Now it's almost every day.

   
• Mr. Bats! I've shared this video before. But this morning I ran across it again and was compelled to share it again because it's one of the most adorable things I've ever seen...

That bat really likes bananas! I've always loved bats, and it's just crazy to me that there are people who don't... especially considering how incredible they are for the environment and controlling pests!

   
• How Stupid Are We?! Apparently very stupid. We keep ignoring the serious problems facing us. And it's not like there aren't actual solutions out there, it's just that we're not looking into them. Take our disappearing water supply, for example...

God forbid we don't stop building golf courses out in the middle of a dessert and adopt water-saving solutions instead of creating more water-consuming problems.

   
Enjoy your Summertime Sunday heat without me! I'm stying indoors.

   

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