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Christmas ‘Stache

Posted on December 16th, 2021

Dave!The next season of Ted Lasso is likely 9 months away. It's an agonizing wait. But I'd rather they take their time and do it right than rush it to a bad conclusion. If, in fact, it's actually the end. It may be contracted for three seasons, but it's hard to stop a success train like this. Even if Jason Sudeikis decides he's had enough.

In the meanwhile... there's this...

Yeah. They could create this as a series and I'd totally watch it as well.


Ronin (Again)

Posted on December 15th, 2021

Dave!The penultimate episode of Hawkeye was released at midnight last night and of course I had to stay up for it (I was working late anyway). It's incredible. And it pisses me off. This should have been Episode 04, not Episode 05... because this is where things are getting good, and you just know that the conclusion is going to be rushed if it's all crammed into a single episode. I can only guess that the story is going to be badly truncated or it's all just setup for other series. Which is definitely is. But it shouldn't be that in a way that short-changes Clint Barton, which is the guy we're all here to see...

The last thing I want to do is spoil the show for those who haven't seen it yet, but I do want to get into this episode. So... if you're not up to speed on Episode 05, here's your chance to bail before some serious spoilerage gets dropped on your head.

And if you're not watching Hawkeye? I can't recommend it highly enough. You may remember that I ranked all the Marvel television shows a few days back. Well, this series is now in my #1 spot by a wide margin. It is easily the best of the Marvel Studios shows, and worth getting a Disney+ subscription just for this (but there's a lot of good stuff on there, so it's a price I'm happy to pay for each month).

My spoiler-filled commentary is in an extended entry...

→ Click here to continue reading this entry...


Bullet Sunday 742

Posted on December 12th, 2021

Dave!Snow has finally come to Redneckistan! But will it last? Doesn't matter... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• MACGRUBER! This coming Thursday. Four more days. I love, love, loved the MacGruber movie. I've watched it an embarrassing number of times and have been wanting a sequel forever. But a TV series will do just fine...

It looks like it's going to be even better than the movie. Can't wait!

• Beautiful! Flawless...

Dumbass bigots self-own so often that I just accept it as their default.

• Enter the Matrix! I'm intrigued...

Though I remember being excited for the two shitty sequels we got last time, so I'm cautiously optimistic.

• Crossed-Stitched! This made my entire morning (here's a link if TikTok is being a dick)...


This. Took. So. Long. 😢 ##pleasehitlike ##myfingershurt ##TubiTaughtMe ##crossstitch ##xstitch ##summer ##foryourpride ##shecamedowninabubbledoug

♬ original sound - Collecting Weekly Clips


• BACON! In general, not buying Kellogg's products has been easy for me... except Morning Star Farms fake bacon. I eat this stuff by the truckload. I put it on sandwiches. I eat it for breakfast. I crumble it and put it on everything... E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G... because it's such a great product. There are few alternatives in my area, and the ones I've tried have been awful. I seriously hope that Kellogg reconsiders their abhorrent behavior so I can start buying it again... but... oh well. I refuse to buy any of their products now, and may never buy them again. Hopefully stores will replace Morning Star Farms "Bacon" with Lightlife "Smart Bacon" or something I like.

It's so weird. I've been buying shitloads of Morning Star Farms since I first became a vegetarian in 1986. In many stores where I live, they were the only option. And many of their products remain a favorite... Grillers Original Burgers... Sausage Patties... OH LORD, THOSE GLORIOUS CORN DOGS... and, of course, the bacon. At most, it's been an inconvenience for me. I dipped and fried my own Lightlife corn dogs and they were every bit as delicious as the Morning Star Farms (better even!), but a hassle to make. I will have to see if I can made 100 of them and hope they freeze well? I dunno. Fingers crossed..

• Happy Holidays! The irony is not lost on me that it may very well end up that my favorite Hallmark Christmas movie of 2021 is actually a Hanukkah movie...

Maybe it's because they only get one Hanukkah movie each year that they get to put all their good ideas in a single movie... unlike Christmas where all the ideas are split between 40 movies... but this is another winner after an equally good flick last year.

• Interview! I met Anne Rice twice at book signings. When people ask me what she was like, I had the same response both times... "She was nice. But disconcerting because it felt like she could see right through me." And it's true. Nice as can be... made some sweet chit-chat with me... and made me feel like she had supernatural eyesight that was more than a little intimidating.

Which is why I was very sad to hear of her passing. I liked some of her books. Was less enchanted by others. But ultimately enjoyed the entertainment she generously offered me. But I'm more upset because I feel that a total stranger who knew me better than I knew myself has gone. And, yeah, I know that doesn't make much sense. But it does to me.

And I guess that's all I got to say about that.


The Automat?

Posted on December 9th, 2021


There's a documentary on "the automat" (called The Automat) that I really want to see. In pre-COVID times I might have even flew to one of the film festivals where it will be playing in 2022. I don't know why I'm so obsessed with the idea of an automat, but it probably has to do with the movie Dark City, one of my favorite films. "The City" has an automat, and it just looked to cool...

The Automat from Dark City.

The Automat from Dark City.

The Automat from Dark City.

The Automat from Dark City.

The Automat from Dark City.

The Automat from Dark City.

The Automat from Dark City.

The fact that they are making Dark City into a television series is something to get excited about. Especially since director Alex Proyas is involved.

No idea if the film is playing near you (there's a few dates for 2022, and you can find out here) but I'm sure we'll see it on some streaming service eventually. Until then, here's a taste...

Automats never came out West. The closest I have come to seeing one was a similar concept in Japan, but they didn't have all the little doors like the US Automats had.

If there's one thing I'm sure of, we'll eventually see an automat again. It's just too fantastic a concept to ever truly die.

Doubt they'll have pie for a nickel though.


Comic Book News Day

Posted on December 7th, 2021

Dave!My comic book news day started with good news... Shang-Chi 2 is a go with Marvel Studios. But then I read the gut-wrenching news that brilliant comic book artist George Pérez has inoperable pancreatic cancer with months to live and there was no amount of good news that could compensate.

So many comic books I bought simply because George Pérez was drawing them. I bought every magazine I could find where he discussed his art and career. Every book, every special, every interview, every everything. His revival of Wonder Woman remains my favorite version of the character. His interpretation of The Scarlet Witch remains one of the best super-hero costumes ever created (and the sexiest). And nobody draws a team book like George. Absolutely nobody. There are many comic book artists whom I enjoy... but there's only one George Pérez. And while I am sad to hear of his latest setback, I temper my sadness with the knowledge that his work will live on. He has left us a legacy so amazing that it cannot help but endure.

In other comic book news, The AV Club ranked all the Marvel TV shows. It's kind of hard to take any list seriously that doesn't have The Inhumans in dead-last place... but a lot of their reasoning is sound (except with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., which I can never understand how people actually enjoyed). Just for kicks, here's my ranking...

  1. Agent Carter
    This series was sublime. Haley Atwell made every scene worth watching. And while it took a nosedive in the second season, that didn’t diminish my hope that we’d get a third. I still want it.
  2. Loki
    While a bit more esoteric than I was hoping for, I did like that they found a way to make the character interesting. It would have been so much easier to make him trade on his one-note villainy, but they took him in an entirely different direction while still letting him be Loki. Since we’re getting a second season I hope that they figure out how to avoid a sophomore slump that would be all too easy after the way the first season ended.
  3. Daredevil
    This one had a rocky start, but ultimately managed to do the character justice. The casting of Charlie Cox as Matt Murdock was flawless, and has me really hoping that the character crosses over into the MCU proper. And then there’s Vincent D’Onofrio who nailed his performance as The Kingpin so thoroughly that it seems impossible that they can’t pull him into the MCU somehow.
  4. Luke Cage
    This series might have taken my top spot if the second season was better. I didn’t like the storyline they had going and it was weirdly paced. But that first season? The guy WAS Luke Cage. Another series that should come to the MCU, Mike Colter and all.
  5. Falcon & Winter Soldier
    This series had a lot to love, starting with the undeniable chemistry that comes out of Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan. But it was a lot of setup for stuff that may or may not ever pay off. I wish they would have concentrated on a good show for The Falcon and The Winter Soldier first and MCU-building second.
  6. WandaVision
    A critical darling that never quite landed with me. The whole TV gimmick was clever, but I would have rather seen them actually have a story that focused on the super-heroes that are Scarlet Witch and The Vision. Yes, there were some clever, emotional, and smart moments that made me take notice... but I wanted something else.
  7. Jessica Jones
    Another bit of flawless casting... this time married to some really good, thought-provoking stories. Kristen Ritter’s Jones is another character that should just walk across to the MCU and give us another couple seasons on Disney+.
  8. What If
    While they tried to tie it all together at the end, it was frustrating seeing so many of these episodes not really end. And when you think about the finale, they don’t really actually ever have an ending. Still, I am looking forward to more.
  9. Legion
    I think if I were watching this now I might enjoy it more. But I watched with the full knowledge of who the character is in the comics and what ties he has to the X-Men and couldn’t escape the idea that we were being short-changed.
  10. The Punisher
    I enjoyed the series and thought that Jon Bernthal did a great job with the material he was given. Unfortunately what he was given was kinda weak. Sure there were bright spots to be had, but not enough of them to really get me invested in the series.
  11. MODOK
    Funnier than it had a right to be, I did start to get bored as the series progressed. They had their idea, they stuck to that idea, then rode it right to the end. Sometimes that works, but in this case it felt like they could have done more. Still... darn funny in spots.
  12. The Defenders
    It is inconceivable that they managed to get Sigourney Weaver for this series... which wasa everything that four other Netflix series were leading up to... and they kind of shoved her aside. I mean, come on. Sigourney can do loads with the smallest of parts (look at her amazing albeit small contribution to the movie classic Paul) so even if your time was limited you could have still given her a compelling villain to play. Instead we were left a bit disappointed.
  13. Cloak & Dagger
    Two good actors... New Orleans as a location... based on an interesting comic book concept... how could you go wrong? Well, you could go seriously wrong if you were to drag things out and make the show more about Tandy and Tyrone than Cloak and Dagger. When their powers were going on and being used creatively, this show sang. But most of the time I was bored, bored, bored.
  14. Iron Fist
    Where to start? The show was always going to be problematic by having a white guy be a martial arts master trading on an ancient power that comes out of Asia. But then they just made the stories so bad. SO bad. And Finn Jones really never embodied the character (especially in the first season). What really sucks is that by the end of the second season we were finally getting to an interesting place... just before it was canceled. Where they ended is where they should have started, because the character CAN be interesting.
  15. Agents of SHIELD
    Despite loving Agent Phil Coulson, I detested this series. It was comically bad. And every time people would tell me “No! It’s getting good now!” I would tune in only to find that it was just as bad as when I had left it. Then it went all "Agents in Space" and built weak-ass ties to The Inhumans for something I didn’t like even a little bit from start to finish.
  16. Runaways
    I could NOT get into this show, even though the concept in the comics was pretty great. In the end I think they skimped too much on what could have happened with a bigger budget and interesting stories.
  17. The Gifted
    Yeah, this was pretty much a disaster from the first episode. Trying to do the X-Men without the actual X-Men is a recipe for disappointment and I never made it past episode three.
  18. Helstrom
    The show never really had a chance and I cannot fathom why Hulu bothered to make it in the first place. A Marvel series that’s not a Marvel series with no ties to Marvel shows? WTF? It could have been different if they at least made it interesting. But they watered down an already watered down concept which left a bland show that didn’t know what to do with itself.
  19. Inhumans
    Lord. Not only the worst Marvel show ever made... one of the worst television shows ever made. Period. Just like Odo the shape-changing alien than never changed shape on Deep Space Nine, here’s a TV show with super-powered characters that never really did anything super. And they made it clear that’s what they were going for from the jump when they cut off Medusa’s hair... her only power. Awful stories with awful performances and laughable special effects that sold absolutely nothing. Every frame of the show was shoddy and cheap, and it makes zero sense how it ever came out of Marvel Studios. They should have just buried it rather than let it tarnish Marvel’s hard-earned reputation.

Still trying to wrap my head around The AV Club thinking that Helstrom was somehow worse than The Inhumans.


Hawkeye is Here

Posted on December 1st, 2021

Dave!Disney+ and Marvel Studios debuted Hawkeye last week with two episodes. And while they were great, I was a little disappointed that they were dragging out the series with such a large amount of build-up. I know that Kate Bishop and her world has to be established since we've never seen her before... but come on. They could have easily done that in a single episode! Instead 1/3 of the series was pretty much over before we got to what we're wanting to see.

And then the third episode dropped today and, yep, now we're EXACTLY where the second episode should have started. This is everything I was dying to see from the Matt Fraction and David Aja comic book series come to life...

Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye

Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye

Echo, who appeared at the end of last episode is given some back-story this time around. And yet it's not drawn out so it infringes on the absolutely wild action we get to see. Seriously, watching Clint Barton escape from the mess he's in is thrilling. Jeremy Renner has nailed the character so thoroughly that I seriously hope that he doesn't disappear entirely after the mantle is passed to Kate Bishop. It's entirely possible for her to go on to do her own thing while still giving us a second season of Hawkeye.

And now is the time that I implore you to check out the comic book series upon which this television series is lifting from. It is, in all honesty, in my top ten comic book series of all time, and I've read through the Fraction/Aja run at least a half-dozen times now...

Well, well worth your valuable time.


Bullet Sunday 739

Posted on November 21st, 2021

Dave!It may be snowing out my window, but it will always be warm here at Blogography... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Sweet! Huh. M&M'S USA Sugar Cookie tastes just like a sugar cookie! Weird!

But... cool. And tasty.

• Pep! One of the most pleasant surprises to come out of HBO Max was the four-episode Adventure Time: Distant Lands episodes. As a massive fan of Adventure Time, it was so great seeing more from the show after it went away. Every episode was absolutely brilliant, and this last one... featuring Peppermint Butler called Wizard City is my favorite of the bunch...

I really hope that we get another season, because all these episodes did was make me want more Adventure Time!

• Simu! I don't know if Simu Liu inspired everybody or what, but last night's Saturday Night Live was one of the best episodes in a while...

The fact that every once in a while SNL is actually good kind of messes with my head. So many times it's mostly not funny and a waste of time.

• Man Park! Speaking of SNL, this sketch from last week was about the only bright spot in an otherwise forgettable episode...

I become more and more a fan of Pete Davidson with every sketch he's in like this.

• Homeopathy! Welp...

This was really well done (as are all the Kurzgesagt videos) and I like how they actually acknowledge that there are things that can be learned from homeopathy, which is true from many things that are ultimately nonsense. Beneath it all, the nonsense is believed because there's something there being addressed which is not being addressed otherwise.

• Gravy! This had me laughing way harder than I should have...

@marcwinski #duet with @justinrileyyy Gravy Sales #joke #share #food #fyp #thanksgiving ♬ Aww just gravy - Justin Riley

• Rant Rant! From ScreenRant: Shang-Chi's Ending Repeats A Problem We Thought The MCU Had Evolved Past. — Spoiler Alert... they say that "As mentioned before, many of the MCU's final acts have largely been flashy CGI battles."WELL NO SHIT! THAT'S WHAT THE PEOPLE WHO DRIVE UP BILLION-DOLLAR BOX OFFICE RECEIPTS WANT TO SEE! What would you like Marvel to do? Have Shang-Chi hug it out with his dad when the guy shows up at the end and then walk off into the sunset? These are COMIC BOOK MOVIES! Have you ever READ a comic book? CGI has finally gotten to the point where the massively cool battles that we've been seeing in comic books for decades CAN ACTUALLY BE CREATED FOR MOVIES! So why would Marvel Studios not do that? Why fix what ain't broken? The final battle in Shang-Chi was absolutely epic and a blast to watch. The CGI team killed it. Beautiful, thrilling, comic-book-come-to-life, over-the-top action. THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT I WANT FROM A COMIC BOOK MOVIE! If I want emotionally-driven drama, I'll watch something else. And if that's what you're looking for, I suggest you do the same. We've come a long, long way from when The X-Men battled frickin' WATER in their second movie. THEY FOUGHT WATER!!! ACTUAL WATER WAS THE FRICKIN' BATTLE AT THE END! And we don't want to go back to that pathetic crap. Now that Marvel Studios finally have The X-Men movie rights back, I am absolutely dying to see what we get out of the films they're dreaming up. Lord God please let it be massive CGI battles in the sky!

And that's a wrap on snowy bullets... they're already melting.


Red Notice Roadshow

Posted on November 15th, 2021

Dave!I love Ryan Reynolds so much that my cat is named after him... "Jake Ryan Reynolds Simmer." He's just sheer entertainment from start to finish, and even though he's basically the same character in all his movies... I honestly don't care. He partnered with Netflix for the great movie Six Underground (which I'm still hoping gets a sequel) and now a new movie, Red Notice with The Rock and Wonder Woman. It was, as expected, highly entertaining...

Red Notice Poster.

Of course the critics gave it bad reviews because they don't give a shit about having fun at the movies, but I really enjoyed it. And it's apparently the biggest streaming debut Netflix has ever had, so there's that.

And now there's this... which might not make sense unless you've seen the movie...

I think the movies left on my 2021 Bucket List are Eternals, Spiderman: No Way Home, and Matrix: Resurrection. Fortunately I can see The Matrix on HBO Max, but I'm not sure if I'll risk a trip to the theaters for the other two.



Bullet Sunday 737

Posted on November 7th, 2021

Dave!I may be dealing with some very upset cats now that Daylight Saving Time has ended, but fear not... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• MEME! One of my all-time favorite memes... if not my most favorite... is the "How do you do, fellow kids?" meme (taken from 30 Rock) by Steve Buscemi. This year for Halloween he went AS HIS OWN MEME, and it's glorious...

Steve Buscemi dressed as his own meme for Halloween.
Photo from @DebraWexler_ on Twitter.

And if, somehow, you've never seen the original context for this meme... here you go!

I've always been a fan of Steve Buscemi. The guy ran to Ground Zero after the 9-11 terrorist attacks to search for survivors. He was a firefighter before becoming an actor and wanted to help out. He's had my respect ever since. On top of that he's a great actor. Every time he pops up, you know his part is going to be interesting... or hilarious.

• MATH DUEL, FIGHT! I am not a mathematician. I just don't have the headspace to get into the maths is requires. But the history of mathematics is something I absolutely love. Most all the discoveries and advancements made have some fascinating and highly entertaining stories around them. The Veritasium YouTube channel excels at bringing these stories to life in a way that's interesting even if you have no idea about the maths. This new one is really good...

I mean... come on. There's always been drama since the dawn of humanity. There's drama in The Bible, for heaven's sake. But back before the internet and telephones, it was some truly bizarre shit. And I love it!

• 80's TV! I love love love Acapulco on Apple TV+. This is a "behind-the-scenes" video that gives you a taste of what the show is about...

It's actually a sequel (of sorts) to the movie How To Be a Latin Lover, but you don't need to have seen it in order to enjoy this series. Highly recommended.

• Pink! I went to watch The Wheel of Time on Amazon Prime Video only to find out it's yet another freakin' "zero" non-episode. Then I saw Amazon was recommending a movie I never heard of called Touch of Pink. And it's truly bizarre. Jimi Mistry plays a gay guy who escaped his traditional Muslim family in Toronto by moving to London, England. He's in a relationship there and their lives are thrown into disarray when his conservative mother comes to visit. What makes it different than dozens of other movies following this formula is that Jimi Mistry has an imaginary friend... who is CARY GRANT?!? Played by Kyle MacLachlan?!? It's actually kinda charming, and Jimi's mom is fantastic...

But here's the real surprise.... as I was watching I was all "What the heck ever happened to Jimi Mistry?" Turns out he fell in love with his dance partner from an appearance on Strictly Come Dancing and they moved to the countryside to become farmers! The guy hasn't done any acting since 2015! Hope he's happy in his life away from our screens and televisions.

• Alexa Say What? Why are we constantly settling for crappy apps that we pay for? All I wanted was to listen to the Kylie Minogue track Better the Devil You Know when I got home. I don't know much about her, but I love this one song. I had INXS on in my car, and it reminded me of the rumor that the Kylie track was about Michael Hutchence. So I tell Alexa to play it when I walk in the door. Instead of just playing the song I want, it starts playing... well... SOMETHING. I'm guessing it's some kind of remix or whatnot, but since the Amazon Alexa app is 100% SHIT, you can't even read what the hell it's playing...

Echo displays an incomprehensible mishmash of chopped text to show what's playing.

After yelling different ways (ORIGINAL! LIVE! OLD VERSION!) I finally just play it via the YouTube music video on my phone. Does anybody on Amazon's dev team actually use their own app? Because surely they would notice this, right?

• SCIENCE! So the reason I hate broccoli, cauliflower, and Brussel sprouts can be explained by actial science! Bitter salad greens like arugula and kale are awful to me. And now we know why. Probably the same thing that makes some people think that cilantro tastes like soap?

• Pro! What happens when Apple stops treating the MacBook Pro as a vanity project and actually builds something that has what professionals need to get real work done...

I've been waiting for this for nearly a decade.

And now back to our regular Day Light Saved programming...


Mister Monk and The Blogger

Posted on October 27th, 2021

Dave!One of my favorite television shows is Monk. It's a police procedural starring Tony Shalhoub which ran for 8 seasons... and won as many Emmy Awards. After the death of his wife, Adrian Monk had a nervous breakdown which caused all of his many phobias and his OCD to escalate to debilitating levels. Unable to serve as a police detective, he had to quit the police force and become a private detective. Brilliant to near super-human levels, Monk solves murders that nobody else can. Alas, his many quirks makes it difficult to assimilate with people and function in society, so he has to be aided with a nurse who accompanies him on his cases.

Surprisingly, the show never lost steam and was pretty great right up until its final episode...

I'm just going to get this out of the way right now... I find it inconceivable that the show hasn't been brought back as a mini series or a some movie specials or even a full-on revival. The closest we got were a few book spin-offs and this cool promo spot from Peacock...

How is it that people could watch that and not go... Holy crap! We should bring back Monk!

Over the course of its 125 episodes, Monk had precious few supporting characters which were along for the entire ride. Two, as a matter of fact. Police Captain Leland Stottlemeyer (played by Ted Levine... yes, Buffalo Bill from The Silence of the Lambs) and Lieutenant Disher. Even the nurse assistant was two different characters (Bitty Scram was replaced after 40 episodes with Traylor Howard... both of whom were excellent). Not even Monk's psychiatrist lasted the entire show due to the untimely death of actor Stanley Kamel.

I had been watching a couple episodes (most) every night for months now. Last night I watched the season finale and am done.

I gotta tell you... it is really tough to not start all over again from episode one right now. How many shows can you say that about? Not many. Off the top of my head, it's something like this for me...

  • Sirens
  • Wonderfalls
  • Veronica Mars
  • The Finder
  • The West Wing
  • Limitless
  • Watchmen
  • Firefly
  • Kitchen Confidential
  • The IT Crowd
  • Ted Lasso
  • Psych
  • Deception
  • Happy Endings
  • Hooten and the Lady
  • Life
  • Scrubs
  • Palace Guard
  • No Tomorrow
  • Sports Night
  • Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip
  • L.A. to Vegas
  • Twin Peaks (Season One Only)
  • Alias (Seasons One & Two Only)
  • Wrecked

Given the huge, huge number of TV shows I've watched over the years, the fact that I can only think of 25 of them speaks volumes.

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