Bleh with Barry

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Archive for the ‘Television’ Category

X-Men: Days of Future Past

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X-Men: Days of Future Past

X-Men: Days of Future Past Opens tomorrow, and guess who’s excited? I freely admit that I let my nerd flag wave when it comes to the X-Men. They are my favorite. Here, you see the shirt that I will be wearing when I watch it tomorrow night. Look forward to my post on the movie soon. ūüôā

Till then.

Written by uncannynerdyguy

May 22, 2014 at 8:01 pm

Rhiannon

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So on “American Horror Story: Coven” tonight, Stevie Nicks appeared. I’m posting this video because of my love of her. This is a live version of her hit “Rhiannon,” which she performs on the show. I do, however, wish that the show had used her a little more effectively, not just a songstress, white witch (this is okay too though). I hope you enjoy this extended version of the song.

Written by uncannynerdyguy

January 8, 2014 at 10:47 pm

An Interesting Aspect of Patrick Stewart

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So I’m posting this because I was on IMDB the other day and found out something really interesting / fun about my favorite starship captain Patrick Stewart. While reading the trivia about him, I discovered that he “Is a self-confessed huge¬†Reba McEntire¬†fan” (IMDB). Not only was I surprised, but I additionally laughed really hard. However, this laughing was not directed at Stewart¬†per say, but at the fact that those who are objects of fanboy obsession are fanboys themselves in their own right. This makes me respect Stewart that much more because it humanizes him in a way that I believe those that obsess over him can understand (I’m not saying that I obsess over him… I really enjoy him on TNG and¬†American Dad).¬†So with all of this said, I leave you with a video from Reba (and Kelly Clarkson that Stewart might not enjoy… but oh well, I just don’t know).

Written by uncannynerdyguy

August 12, 2012 at 1:17 pm

Migrating My Posts About True Blood and Vampire Stuff to My Other Blog

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As you’ve probably read, I started another blog (Vampires in the Mist). So if some of you are here just for the vampire stuff, I’m probably going to be posting my vampire content over there from now on. However, don’t fret because I will link up things here for a while just so that you don’t miss all my thoughts about the undead and their feeding habits… besides, they’re cool, and I don’t want you to miss the cool vampire-ness.

The first post I share with you on there: True Blood Season 5 Thus Far (*Spoilers Possible*). I hope you enjoy. Also, if you like it and get super excited about vampires, you should follow my other blog. ūüôā

Written by uncannynerdyguy

July 19, 2012 at 4:34 pm

“The Munsters” Get Revived as Bryan Fuller’s “Mockingbird Lane”

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By CBS Television (eBay item photo front publicity release) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

I love the macabre, monsters, and other things like that. So it will come as no surprise upon hearing that Bryan Fuller of Pushing Daisies¬†and Dead Like Me¬†fame will be rebooting¬†The Munsters¬†(1964) on NBC as¬†Mockingbird Lane.¬†While Fuller himself admits that the show will be a reboot of sorts, he additionally allows that it will not be your parents’ (or grandparents’… I guess some people are old enough…) television show. Instead, the show will act as a revision to the previous source material (no neck bolts, Bela Lugosi costumes, etc.) and will build a new continuity.

If you’re familiar with Fuller’s work, you will know that he has a knack for dark comedy and quirkiness that will be an added addition to the world of our favorite monsters. Moreover, his¬†aesthetic will be wonderful when it comes to painting and creating the world that these favorites of ours will inhabit.¬†¬†Honestly, I’m excited to see what Fuller does with this series simply because I love his body of work and I loved the original version of the show from the 60s.

Starring:

Herman Munster– Jerry O’Connell

Lily– Portia de Rossi

Grandpa– Eddie Izzard

Marilyn– Charity Wakefield

Eddie– Mason Cook

While some of the casting choices seem a bit odd to me (*cough* Jerry O’Connell *cough*), I think that overall it’s a relatively strong cast. My overall favorite casting choice would be Eddie Izzard as Grandpa. To me, he is the right fit for the snarky and fun character that is Grandpa. . .Moreover, he’s a fabulous actor overall too.

Anyway, here’s hoping that the final product is good. I know that I’ll be tuning in to see what happens. Still, I have faith in Fuller and the cast that has assembled (that feels like an¬†Avengers¬†joke… not intentional… but whatever). Here’s hoping that writing, filming, and editing goes well so that we’ll get to see this new gem in the fall. I await it with neck bared.

For more information, check out this interview with Bryan Fuller by James Hibberd.

Why Watching an Anniversary Concert DVD Does not Make You an Expert

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By Photo: Andreas Praefcke (own photograph) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

As all of you know, I am a kind of a YouTube fanatic, but moreover, you all know that the comments / reviews on performance, literary, or artistic items unnerve me when they do certain things (“Commenting on Things: What You Should and Should Not Do“). However, most recently, I have been watching clips from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s¬†The Phantom of the Opera¬†and¬†Claude-Michel Sch√∂nberg’s¬†Les Miserables¬†from varying performances. In the comment sections, I have found people attacking other performers based upon their watching of the 25th Anniversary Cast DVDs of both musicals and think that they are the¬†quintessential casts and performances. While I don’t necessarily have a problem with either cast (besides that Jonas kid as Marius… because he’s wimpy compared to the rest of the cast), I think that it is entirely unfair to demonize another performance based upon the ideology that you liked another performer better, but moreover, I also think that it’s terrible to attack a performer simply because you say they’re terrible… Tell us why they’re terrible for heaven’s sake.

The biggest example of this comes when people are comparing Lea Salonga’s performance of Fantine (25th Anniversary of Les Mis) or Eponine ¬†(10th Anniversary) to the others that have played these roles and simply saying that they suck in comparison to her. ¬†While I have no objections to Lea Salonga per say, ¬†I do think that there are things that she does that are technically wrong. For instance, she spreads every vowel to the point that tight vowels are distorted by the overall¬†stretched¬†position of her mouth. (If you notice, I pointed out a flaw that is easily detectable… not just “Fuck no Lea Salonga is Fucking awfel”… spelling errors added for emphasis). However, I still believe that Lea Salonga is a good performer in her own right. Still, I don’t necessarily think that she’s the best performer for particular roles (Fantine is one thing that I just am not a fan of her in because her voice doesn’t convey the emotion that I think it should… to me it comes off as I’m trying to be sad and emotional but never really arrives at either). ¬†Ms. Salonga is good in many things, but I just don’t think that this is the best performance of her (I like her better as Eponine).

This brings me to the main point of this post. I understand that people love the anniversary concerts of both franchises. Honestly, the 25th Anniversary¬†Phantom might be my favorite filmed musical production. I also like¬†a lot about the¬†Les Mis¬†25th Anniversary (Ramin Karimloo and Hadley Fraser are awesome… and so is Samantha Banks… others are too). However, I think that you create a flawed perception for yourself if you think that¬†a DVD cast is the end all be all and don’t give anyone else another chance at all. I find nothing wrong with valuing one person’s performance over another. My biggest qualm lies with those that attack other people and other performances simply because they think that one person is better. This is why I say that watching that 25th Anniversary does not make you the expert on the whole of the musical or anything else for that matter. Believe me. There are others out there that know a lot more than you about whatever it is that you’re writing about, and most of them will allow you to have a valid point in an argument as long as it doesn’t turn into the “Nuh-uh she sucks!” type of statement.

Also, (this is connected to the previous paragraph, but I wanted to break here), don’t spread slander about an actor / actress / performer / writer just to do it. ¬†For example, this comment came from a¬†Les Mis¬†video with Ruthie Henshall:

“This DOMESTIC STARLET CAREERLESS HAS-BEEN (thank you, Arch) is terribly miscast for this role. She has the ugliest voice ever of any Fantine, she can’t hit the notes, and she can’t act. The overarated Ruthie Henshall should not be cast in anything!”

Why was this necessary? Additionally, I have seen the “Domestic Starlet Careerless Has-Been” quoted often and wonder who said it first. This does not make you appear knowledgeable… it just makes you look ignorant and hateful (also without citing your source, it makes you look like a plagiarist or that you’re ashamed of your source… all I’m saying). Additionally, please don’t mark everything as SPAM if it doesn’t agree with your opinion. That’s even more childish than the “Nuh-Uh” comments in my opinion. If you can’t have a rationale and civil debate, don’t hide what others say… GAH!!!

Sorry… I’m done with my rant now… I feel a little better about life, and hopefully, others who do these rude things simply because they can hide behind the¬†anonymity of the internet can take something from this… So in closing, I leave you with a few of the videos that started this rant. If you want more examples of the comments that people make, just look in the comment sections on these vids… So yeah…

The first is the Ruthie Henshall version from the 10th Anniversary concert of¬†Les Mis. Personally, this is my favorite and is the one that started the purpose of this post… I feel like she shows a great deal of emotion in the song and performance, which is limited by the concert setting mind you. Enjoy!

The second is the Lea Salonga video that also caused this post. While I’m not a huge fan of Salonga’s Fantine, I think that there are some things that are wonderful about her performance as well. I just watch her and feel that her technique is flawed because of the vowel spreading… I also think that she doesn’t sound like a woman who has been through all that Fantine has… (and she’s had it hard).

The third is form the original West End performer of the role Patti Lupone. While it’s in a concert setting (because the original show was in a time before bootlegging shows in the theater was more difficult… think of the 80s video cameras…), I think that it’s obvious why a lot of individuals believe her to be pretty awesome (I love Patti…).

I’m even including Susan Boyle’s version of the song, which many persons may know… Although I am impressed by her vocal ability as a relative unknown flying into stardom and her raw talent, I also think that it’s unfair to compare her to the Broadway and West End greats that have performed this song. She’s good, but she has a lot of little flaws throughout the performance (timing, vowel sound, counting) that make it weaker to me. Good performance overall.

Matter of factly, even Glee has done it with Idina Menzel and Lea Michelle performing. Auto-tuned¬†performances aside because of the nature of television, it’s pretty good overall… just not my cup of tea.

I could give you more and more of these performance, but I’m going to end here. But my PSA of the day would be that you (and I know that I’m writing toward a niche) should give other performances and artistry a chance before you judge something as terrible simply because it’s not what you’re familiar with or what you fell in love with to begin with… There you go.

True Blood Season 5: Hopes and Thoughts about What is Yet to Be

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I usually create one of these posts before the premiere of HBO’s¬†True Blood, and I figure that this year should not be any different than others. I love the Southern Vampire Mysteries and the subsequent television show, which makes me speculate about what might or might not happen. I link you to my “True Blood Post-Mortem of Season 4” to catch you up on my thoughts about the last season.¬†So without further ado, I give you my thoughts and hopes about season 5 (*SPOILERS* from this point on).

1) Tara’s Death– Honestly, Tara has lost favor with me from the first season version of her, and if you’ve kept up with the seasons till now, you know that she filled Eric’s place getting blasted by Debbie Pelt. At the end, Sookie sat holding her dying body and screaming for someone. While they are leading the audience to believe that she’s dead (and personally, it wouldn’t bother me if she was), I don’t think that they’ll actually kill her. I’m more inclined to believe that either shaman Lafayette or one of Sookie’s vampire beaus will save her before she actually fades to black. Do I really care with what happens with her after this? Not really. . .however, I feel that things will still be happening.

2) The Authority coming into the picture– At the end of last season, Nan Flanagan found herself fired for the witch¬†debacle¬†and wanted to enlist Bill and Eric to help her fight against them. However, they killed her and her constituents without a second thought. Still, from the previews and promo videos, it appears that we will meet the Authority in the form of Christopher Meloni, Christopher Heyerdahl, and others. I’m kind of excited to see them since they have been a main focus surrounding the ruling parties of vampires in the series. Vampire¬†hierarchy¬†in novels, television shows, etc. is always something that intrigues me.

3) Werewolf Stuff– As anyone reading this will know, book 5¬†Dead as a Doornail¬†deals a lot with shapeshifters and werewolves. In my opinion, I think that some of this stuff will come to pass because Alcide is set up to become the new leader of the were pack of Shreveport. I’m a fan of Alcide, but with the emphasis on the vampires, I think that this will become a footnote plot point… yeah…

4) Sam and Luna– This story line should be the most stable in the long run to me. However, I feel like some unpleasantness is going to occur thanks to Marcus’s death… Yeah… I love Janina Gavankar too… So it helps that this story involves her.

5) Eric and Pam’s relationship– From one of the promo videos, I worried about this aspect of the show the most simply because Eric was blaming Pam for unearthing Russell Edgington (which I will get to in a second). Their relationship was on the rocks at the end of the last episode of season 5, but I figured that this would be worked out pretty quickly, yet this turn of events has me thinking that Pam, my favorite character if you don’t know, might die… I’ve said it many times before, but if Pam dies, I will quit watching the show… Yeah.

6) Russell Edgington arises– This might be the favorite thing to happen at the end of the last season. Russell was unearthed, but we don’t know by whom (hence the Pam thing in the promos). With Dennis O’Hare as the delightfully demented vampire of 3000, I’m excited to see him return, which will allow the character to grow yet again. It will be awesome!!!! AWESOME!!!!

7) Off-Bookedness– What excites me and scares me the most about this season deals with the fact that they are going to be almost, if not completely, off book. While it’s been a while since I read the fifth book, I’ve realized since the second season that things are moving away from this canon text. However, I find that this is not necessarily a bad thing. With new thrills and ¬†changes around the bend, I like not being able to see what is coming.

So there you have it, some of the things that I’m excited about for season 5. While I know not all of them will come true, here’s hoping that my radar is right on and at least some of this will happen. If not, I may have to hang these posts up… and frankly, I like talking about vampires, the show, and the books too much to do that. ūüėČ

The Walking Dead: Post-Mortem Season 2 *Spoilers*

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By Uploaded to Commons Xeworlebi, image self taken [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

After watching the season 2 finale of The Walking Dead, I come away with many thoughts about what happened and why I like some of it and why other parts irritate me. Overall, I liked season 2, and the finale made the overarching narratives go out with a bang.

1) Zombie blood bath– I think that this might have been the most impressive and exciting part of the season finale because it was the first time a horde of zombies attacked the humans without the humans invading their territory (the tank episode in Atlanta would be an example of territory disruption on the part of Rick and the others). All the characters are able to show their badassness in how they take on the horde as well with many of the more minor characters finally getting some screen time to show their skills (Hershel standing there blasting walkers made it interesting…).

By sookie (Flickr) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

2) Shane’s death via Rick– I’ll be honest that I’ve never like the character of Shane. He was a dick and marched to the beat of a different drum that was going to get the others killed, it was just a matter of time. While I don’t know that Rick stabbing him was an entirely convincing way to waste him albeit a satisfying one, I feel like this¬† broke the character of Rick from the hopeful one of the group and produced a scary individual on the other side… I’m not sure what is going to happen with him, but I know that Shane did have to die… Lori being pissy with Rick after the fact, however, annoyed the hell out of me because she was the one who initiated the whole situation… What did she think would happen?

3) Jenner’s Big Reveal– I’ve been thinking that there was something fishy with the whole Jenner thing at the end of Season 1 and kinda expected something like this to happen. However, I’m not sure of the consequences of telling everyone that they’re infected. Moreover, I don’t think that anyone had the right to attack Rick over his decision not to tell them… Really? Does it matter that they know? Are they all going to “opt out” now? Frankly, I think that for everyone it was an overreaction because nothing changed except for the knowledge that was passed between them, and besides, Rick didn’t know himself until zombie Shane came after him…

4) Can’t they keep Carl in the f*@$ing house or at least watch him– I’m tired of Carl… He’s annoying, and I wouldn’t feel bad if the character happened to get bit by the zombies (maybe they’d get Lori too). However, I’m astonished that no one ever knows where he is in the post-apocalyptic zombie world. We know what happened when Sophia got away from the group (zombiefied). Moreover, they seem to be trying to make him useful in some way in terms of the story, but I’m still not buying that he’s up and about from a gunshot wound that quickly…

 

5) Michonne– While I’m not very knowledgeable about the comic series, the fact that we get a glimpse of a badass character wielding katanas with zombies on chains behind her makes me excited… it seems that someone has gotten it figured out in the zombie apocalypse and maybe she will help the other survivors…

While these are not all my thoughts about the last episode / season, these are some that still are on my mind and that I hope we are going to get some resolution for (the more open-ended thoughts anyway). What I do hope though is that the zombie-rific action and the human drama (not the whiny kind though… *cough* Lori *cough*) will continue to get better as the series continues and, furthermore, that we will get some more insight into the importance of some character choices as the story continues to unfold.

Written by uncannynerdyguy

March 24, 2012 at 1:19 am

Romero and Post-Romero Zombies as Gothic Antagonists and the Sublime

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Recently, in my Spectral and Sublime Gothic Literature class, we had a discussion in which the majority of people agreed that the gross-out, bloody zombies of modernity could not render a Gothic tale because they lack the element of the sublime which makes them the enemy that is foreboding yet one that you want to embrace you in some way. While on one hand, I do agree that in the traditional sense of the Gothic, the Romero-type zombie does not make one want to come to it and be converted into the path of the zombie (unlike the vampire which can be a very Gothic because they are unapproachable and sublime all at the same time). However, as I watched a marathon of The Walking Dead, I came to a conclusion that more than just the zombies exist as the supernatural, antagonistic elements of the show itself that does produce a Gothic tale of sorts.

By Mark Marek Mark Marek Copyright Mark Marek Photography ©2007 URL: Zombie Walk Picture Gallery РFull Coverage with Video on Alberta Stars (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

To begin to deal with my ideology of the Romero / Post-Romero Zombie Gothic, I think that it is important for me to explain how I see the zombies begin to act as a sublime element within the movies, television shows, and comics in which I feel the Gothic exists rather than the norm of just horror. Whereas the zombies themselves are a representation of horrific / gruesome element of the sublime creature / person within a Gothic novel, they additionally represent the figure of death that comes into play in many Gothic tales. However, this death that they represent is not the beautiful death that one may identify with the Gothic notion of the sublime. Zombies represent a gruesome kind of death or undeath because they are not genuinely alive or undead with all their faculties and personalities about them like a vampire or a ghost, yet (and this is where it gets complicated in my mind) in many zombie movies, novels, etc., there is usually talk of “opting out,” as they call it in The Walking Dead.

While the zombies themselves are not what one would call sublime, this natural death to end human suffering in the zombie filled world takes up this sublimity. The humans themselves by “opting out” or committing suicide, usually from a gunshot to the head, create an air of the sublime in the natural death that does not happen as a result of being bitten or waiting to be bitten (cause let’s fact it… it’s only a matter of time in a zombie filled world). The beauty that natural death represents in this isolated and inhospitable world holds a certain air of that sublime that they want but what they are afraid to get because it is suicide. Moreover, this suicide sublimity also provides a stark contrast to the gruesomeness that is the zombie, walking till either starvation or some outside force takes them down. The need to be truly and definitely dead rises to conflict with the zombies.

Then, the nature of the sublime that exists within the modern zombie movie, television show, novel, etc. becomes a triangulation of sorts from humans to zombies / undeath, from zombie / undeath to natural death, and from natural death to

By Mark Marek Mark Marek Copyright Mark Marek Photography ©2007 URL: Zombie Walk Picture Gallery РFull Coverage with Video on Alberta Stars (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

humans. Thought the zombies themselves do not equate a form of death that can be considered sublime, the full equation of death that they and the natural death paralleling them represent the sublimity of the Gothic. As the concept of gruesome death in the form of the zombies overruns the world in zombie stories, the desire to have a natural death without the possibility of a sub-par undead resurrection plays at the corner of the survivors minds, even before a zombie literally plays with and eats their brains.

Written by uncannynerdyguy

March 8, 2012 at 11:51 pm

After the Mid-Season Finale: A Darker Degree of The Walking Dead *Spoilers*

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By Zarmaine (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

“This is how we both survive. Do you understand?”

After Rick uttering these words to Sophia’s cries of “Don’t leave me!” and her immediate disappearance, we knew something was going to happen. While I thought that the zombification of Sophia might occur, part of me was hoping that it wouldn’t. Not that it really shocks me that the show would go there because apparently the graphic novels are more explicit than this (I have not read the graphic novels…. I want to… but yeah, I haven’t gotten the opportunity); however, the death of the first child character changes the dynamic of the show a bit.

1) We lose another character that is more directly going to affect and influence the emotions of the remainder of the characters in the show. When Andrea’s sister Amy was bitten and died in the first season,¬† we didn’t bat an eye because she was taken in as part of the zombie collateral damage… When¬† Jacqui and Dr. Jenner decided to die in the CDC cleansing, we contemplated how bad that would be in a world filled with zombies. Yet, something about the defenseless twelve-year-old girl changes everything… even as Rick had to shoot her, we all knew that it was the only logical course of action… but you couldn’t help but feel for the stumbling little Sophia and everyone in the crowd as any hope they had in the zombie world came crashing down…

 

2) Lori’s pregnancy becomes even more problematic and scary… With the death of Sophia one of the precious children that the group wanted to protect, Lori’s concerns and thoughts for wanting to abort the pregnancy (albeit with morning after pills that would probably only mess up the child rather than abort it because she’s so far along) become even more realistic… They couldn’t protect Sophia, what makes them think they can protect a newborn.

3) The group is going to be even more disparate. Let’s face it… the death of Sophia is going to set many members of the group on edge and rightly so. Additionally, I think that it will make the whiny characters more whiny and the resolved / strong characters stronger… if it goes against this, I think that it would be refreshing… However, I think that I will probably be correct… Still, I am intrigued by what might happen with Hershal and his family as a result of Walker Slaying 2011… yeah…

By Uploaded to Commons by Xeworlebi, self created (Self created, design from the shows intertitle) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Whatever happens with the rest of this second season, I hope that it will continue to move along at a decent pace. Before the break, I felt as if at times the show began to drag… However, now that the main plot point keeping them in one place has been resolved, it seems that the season should move toward an epic conclusion… one can only hope.

Written by uncannynerdyguy

February 12, 2012 at 2:23 pm