- "Team Thor" Comic-Con Video - I heard about this a while back and thought it sounded fun; it's finally been released, and lo, it is very fun. If you like the Marvel movies, you should watch it. Potential nominee for Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form for next year? I think so.
- Aquaman, King of the Seven Seas, Has Fucking Had It With You, Man. This will naturally become more relevant the further we get into DC movie universe land.
- Getting to the Heart of David Letterman - Interesting nugget in this interview with David Letterman:
DL: We did this television show - my friends and I - for a very long time. It's probably like anyone else's professional pursuit. When you are doing it for so long, and for each day - I have always likened it to running a restaurant—because you get response to the day's endeavor immediately. Either from the audience or the ratings, but you know as early as the next day how you did.I don't think you need to feel foolish for working on things, but it's a good idea to keep things in perspective. If we were all this introspective, the world'd be a better place.
And because of this introspection, you believe that what you are doing is of great importance and that it is affecting mankind wall-to-wall. And then when you get out of it you realize, oh, well, that wasn't true at all. (laughter) It was just silliness. And when that occurred to me, I felt so much better and I realized, geez, I don't think I care that much about television anymore. I feel foolish for having been misguided by my own ego for so many years.
- Mary Carillo's Badminton Rant - I went on an Olympic badminton jag on YouTube and wound up at this video which is absolutely glorious.
- On 'Going Away' - It doesn't go where you'd expect, but it's always worth reading Julieanne Smolinski:
When I was in junior high school, my broke single mom got her first decent paycheck and took my sister and me on a trip to a small, sparsely populated, tremendously beautiful island in the Caribbean.Heh.
All local transport there had to be secured through a man named Scooter Dave. Scooter Dave looked like Captain Ron’s tartar-sauce stained rap sheet. I remember him telling us some suspect origin story about fleeing a dull corporate job for the island life, but he was almost certainly fleeing something more sinister. He lived in an actual beach shack and each night, could be seen at our hotel bar, spinning raunchy yarns for uneasily entertained guests while palming a miniature snifter of rum as though it were a small, shapely breast.
- Why 'Stranger Things' worked while 'Ben-Hur' and 'Ghostbusters' went wrong - It's not a mind-blowing sentiment, but it's well put and apparently needs to be said since we're drowning in uninspired remakes and sequels right now:
"Stranger Things" was a wholly original confection, one with a pleasing synth-soundtrack aftertaste. It's the story of a trio of boys teaming up with a little girl who has superpowers to track down a friend who has been kidnapped by a monster. And it's the story of a mother's love for her lost son, her refusal to give up searching for him in the face of interference (and worse) by the federal government. And it's also the story of teenage angst, young lovers coming to grips with the desires and their responsibilities in a world that doesn't particularly care for, or about, them.Indeed. It's hard to make a generalized statement, but I usually tend to prefer something new and interesting over a note-for-note retread. This can be done in a remake, but it hasn't been done in most of the recent, inane remakes we've been inundated with lately. I don't usually want remakes or sequels, but rather, new and interesting things that make me feel the way the originals did. Sometimes a reboot or sequel can do that, but mostly they don't. Fortunately, there are lots of alternatives if you're willing to hunt for them. This weekend alone, I got Hell or High Water, Don't Breath, and Blood Father. None of those movies are perfect or even particularly great, but they're far above the grand majority of remakes/sequels we've seen lately. There's more to this idea, I think, so I'll save that for a later post. Er, yeah, I'll get to that sometime. Right.
Sure, there are echoes of "E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial" and "It" and "The Thing" and even "Pretty in Pink" and "The Breakfast Club." Yes, there are classic 1980s touchstones, like Dungeons & Dragons and walkie-talkies and "Evil Dead" posters and cassette mix tapes. But any sense of nostalgia "Stranger Things" inspires in viewers is healthy, earned - because it comes wrapped in an original story, one that stands on its own whether or not you ever rolled a 20-sided die or swooned over a John Hughes creation.
As per usual, just a random assortment of ye olde links from the internets: