Archive for the ‘TV’ Category

Mike Judge Has A New TV Show: Silicon Valley

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

The creator of Office Space, Beavis and Butthead and King of the Hill has a new (live action) TV show on HBO called Silicon Valley.

The first episode is up free:

I’ve seen about half of it. It’s reasonably funny, but some of the geek characters are a bit too cliched…

John Belushi on The Luck of the Irish

Monday, March 17th, 2014

Because a lot of people have been searching for this on St. Patrick’s day, and the old video appears to have died, here’s a new version.

Watch more video from the Top Picks channel on Frequency

The Complete Monty Python Reunion Press Conference

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

In case you hadn’t heard, Monty Python’s Flying Circus is reuniting for a live show at London’s 02 Arena next July 1st.

Because I like Monty Python, and because I’m not above blatant click-bait, here’s a video of the entire press conference announcing the reunion.

Random Notes:

  1. The sound seems screwed up after about 5 minutes, but you can still hear them.

  2. Love the wrong names.
  3. Love Gilliam’s Mr. Bill shirt.
  4. Carol Cleveland looks really, really good for her age.

Quick Impressions: Almost Human Surprisingly Good

Sunday, November 17th, 2013

By accident I tuned into Fox just as Almost Human was premiering, expecting to watch The Simpsons, and actually got sucked in, almost against my will, since I had zero initial interest in a cop/robot buddy series.

But what what the show is actually doing is broadcast American TV’s first serious attempt to rip-off Blade Runner and much of the entire cyberpunk canon for a cop show, and it actually does (considering the constraints of the form) a halfway decent job of it. The cop/robot interaction is (thus far) only a subplot to the main story of an injured cop returning to the force just as the powerful criminal syndicate that killed his partner and blew off his leg has returned to the scene. Surprisingly, none of the science fiction elements struck me as egregiously stupid, and they actually seem to have put some thought into the near-future setting of the show. Michael Ealy (Dorian the robot partner) hits the underplayed robot cop part very well, Mackenzie Crook brings brings some Whovian British Geek charm to the department’s robot specialist, and Karl Urban is pretty good as the lead; he needs to dial back his Gruff Stoic setting about 15%, but is otherwise fine. I could do without the “look, here’s a flying whatsit at the edge of the scene-bump just to say it’s SF” trope, but it’s not annoying.

Actually, the most problematic bits are on the police procedural end rather than the SF end. The building they work in looks entirely too clean, sparse and modern to be a real police office (like everything else, Blade Runner did it better with a real lived-in look); it’s too clean even for the already too clean CSI look. Ditto the “look at my spacious, open city apartment on a cop’s salary.” And you can already tell which characters (“Hi there, I’m the love interest!”) are going to be doing which buddy cop cliches. You have bits of The Dark Knight and (I’m guessing) Saw in the “over-complicated villain plotting” device. And it has the “lots of shoot-outs” modern cop/action show trope going on, which may or may not be a problem, depending on the direction they take.

I’m actually planning on watching this, which may be my first regular non-animated US broadcast series since, geeze, maybe Homicide: Life on the Streets. (I’m not much of a TV watcher, what with all the writing and book buying and Internetting and the Glavin!)

But despite that, it blends the cyberpunk and police procedural bits pretty (plus obvious dollops of The Caves of Steel and Starsky & Hutch). It’s obviously got money behind the production, which goes pretty far in TV. J.J. Abrams is the executive producer, so it’s possible the characters will turn into idiots further down the line. And it’s not as a good a cyberpunk police procedural as Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex. But for now I actually think it may be worth your attention.

2013 Comikaze Cosplay Expo Video

Saturday, November 9th, 2013

Putting this up because I’m sure that John DeNardo will want to know about it for SF Signal, and in no way because it has lots of attractive, scantly clad women in it…

Silly me. I didn’t even know the U.S. had a cosplay expo.

Also: Oh my…

Maybe You Shouldn’t Read This Post If You’re Depressed

Monday, October 7th, 2013

Ever now and then you come across something interesting, but you wonder “What the hell do I say about this?”

I was looking for some scary gifs when I came across this. There are a few in the, but it seems to be mostly depressing black and white gifs for suicidal teenage girls.

Like this:

Or this:

Interestingly enough, more than half seem to be of stunningly beautiful actresses from popular culture. And, naturally, there’s a lot of Nine Inch Nails references.

And this is pretty striking:

Anyway, if you find yourself making or posting these gifs, maybe you should read this.

Consider this more an act of reportage than commentary…

Guillermo Del Toro Simpsons‘ Couch Gag is Awesome

Saturday, October 5th, 2013

This came out two days ago, and already has over 6 million hits, but I still thought Guillermo Del Toro opening couch gag for The Simpsons forthcoming “Treehouse of Horror” episode was too awesome (and too full of SF/F/H references) not to share.

Hat tip: Hank Wagner’s Facebook feed.

And Now Here’s Something We Hope You’ll Really Like!

Tuesday, September 17th, 2013

June Foray, voice of Rocky the Flying Squirrel and about a thousand other characters, awarded a lifetime achievement Emmy. And not only was she still around to receive it, at age 95, she’s still working!

To celebrate, here’s a timely instructional video:

Hollywood Auction Alert

Saturday, July 27th, 2013

Hollywood auction house is having another big auction of film memorabilia, including a few interesting SF-related items:

  • The fourth issue of the fanzine Imagination, which includes Ray Bradbury’s first published story.
  • Willis O’Brien’s very shoggothian concept art for an unproduced film called The Bubbles, featuring “bubble-like creatures in Baja, California that devour everything in their path.”

  • Electrodes from both the James Whale Frankenstein and Young Frankenstein.
  • A diving helmet from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.
  • Concept art from Forbidden Planet.
  • Charlton Heston’s torn Planet of the Ape pants, plus ape masks.
  • Props from Alien and Aliens
  • A bunch of Star Wars posters and props.
  • Lots of The Bightmare Before Christmas props and sets.
  • Some Matrix stuff, both from the good one and the crappy ones.
  • That farking annoying robot from The Black Hole.
  • Frank’s bunny mask from Donnie Darko.
  • Enough stuff from The Wizard of Oz. and The Sound of Music to start your own museum.
  • Plus Bruce Lee’s nun-chucks, Conan’s sword, the Terminator’s gun, Jason’s machete, Maximus’ axe, Legalos’ arrow, Indiana Jones’ whip, Jack Sparrow’s sword, Captain Kirk’s phaser, a Ghostbusters proton pack, The Comedian’s pistols, Freddy Kreuger’s fingernails, Rambo’s knife, James Bond’s gun, and Scarface’s “little friend.”

    The auction is online in a “Flipbook” format, evidently invented because HTML was insufficiently annoying.

    Sharknado 2: The Sharknadoing

    Wednesday, July 17th, 2013

    Our short national nightmare is finally over! (Or, alternately, continues.)

    There will be a sequel to Sharknado.

    Set in New York City.

    Since John DeNardo at SF Signal has dubbed me “The Official Sharknado News Source,” I feel that I would be remiss in not mentioning it.

    I’m going to go ahead and predict right now that it will feature one scene with an enraged Alec Baldwin pummeling a shark to death with his fists.

    Oh, they also want Johnny Depp to star in it. Good luck with that…