Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Reading/Watching/Etc.


READING:

Inventory: 16 Films Featuring Manic Pixie Dream Girls, 10 Great Songs Nearly Ruined by Saxophone, and 100 More Obsessively-Specific Pop-Culture Lists by the Onion A.V. Club
This is perfect for lunch breaks; every list is like a little capsule of brain candy, and yet its an easygoing read that doesn't tax me during my lazy time. Not my favorite Onion book -- that's still The Tenacity of the Cockroach -- but very entertaining.

Twitter
My two favorite Twitter streams of the moment: Conan O'Brien and Stephen Colbert.

Helena Independent Record
This story about passengers subduing an "alien" on a flight out of Helena is so quintessentially Montana, it cracked me up. I'm sure it was frightening to be in the midst of that craziness, but wow, it makes for a great story. Here's hoping that poor "alien" gets some meds to help him out, or that the mother ship comes back and beams him up soon...

Then That's What They Called Music (A.V. Club)
This is like falling into a time warp that dumps me out in my dorm room at UMD. If someone had told 20 year-old me that someday, I'd be nostalgic for "Barbie Girl," I never would've believed it.


WATCHING:

Doctor Who, Season 5
I was a huge fan of David Tennant as the Doctor, but the new guy's been great so far. I like the dynamic that's developing between him and his new companion, Amy -- she's got some moxie and both actors seem to have some solid comedic chops, too. This is the first time I've been able to watch the show as it airs weekly on BBC America -- I've always had to wait for the DVDs before this, and it's fun being caught-up and able to stay relatively spoiler-free.

Torchwood, Season 1
This is like the evil twin version of Doctor Who. Same universe, a lot of the same elements (and a few of the same characters), but definitely much darker and seedier. If I might mix my sci-fi metaphors for a moment, Doctor Who is Good Spock, and Torchwood is Evil Spock. I'm not completely sold on this show yet; some of the characters are hard to get attached to, and I don't think this first season really hit its stride until the tail end (the last two episodes, in particular). I'll be adding season 2 to the ol' Netflix queue, and we'll see if it grows on me...

Bones, Season 4
Is it just me, or did the "Bones wants to have a baby" plot seem incredibly tacked-on? Almost as tacked-on as the ending to season 3's serial killer saga...

The September Issue

I'm hardly a fashionista -- most of my fashion knowledge comes from Go Fug Yourself -- but this peek behind the curtain to see high fashion wizards at work was pretty interesting. (Sidenote: if The September Issue makes you want to see more of Andre Leon Talley, which it probably will, and his judging stint on America's Next Top Model isn't enough for you, may I present this delightfully cuckoo segment from last Friday's Martha Stewart Show?)

The Back-Up Plan
I wish I'd had a back-up plan to get out of watching The Back-Up Plan.

Date Night
This was better than it had right to be; the whole thing seemed kind of half-baked and a little slapped together. Still, I laughed.

Life and Times of Tim
My younger brother and I saw this on a rack at Target and it looked intriguing...fortunately, we both resisted the urge to buy it on impulse and got it on Netflix instead. What a dud. That was $30 well-saved.

Ponyo
I really liked this; very dream-like, and pleasantly weird.

Clash of the Titans (2010)
Warning: there isn't nearly as much kraken in this movie as the advertisements would have you believe. In fact, I'd go so far as to say this movie suffers from a distinct kraken deficit.
I found it surprisingly boring, given the subject matter, and given how much campy fun the original was with its choppy special effects and scenery-chewing. Sam Worthington's such a blank slate as an actor, it's hard to feel much of anything about the characters he plays -- I found myself wishing I could see more of Liam Neeson & Ralph Fiennes hamming it up and less of the heroic types wandering around semi-aimlessly.

Conan O'Brien on 60 Minutes
Conan: In its day, this was quite a sexy car. Do you believe that?
Steve Kroft: No.
Conan: I didn't think you would.




LISTENING:

Clem Snide - The Meat of Life
Their best in a while. I've been following them since I was in college and I've kept following them even as some of the albums (and solo albums) got a little choppier over the years...I feel like this album's rewarded my patience.

Josh Ritter - So Runs the World Away
I got this in the mail yesterday, and have only had a chance to listen to the first three songs. Already, I'm in love.


ETC:

- I finally finished that @#$%&*! baby blanket I started crocheting two months ago...what a beast. Since I got that monkey off my back, I've regressed to some quick & easy old standbys: potholders, and cat toys. (It helps that I found a giant baggie full of catnip stowed away in my yarn stash...this gives me an excuse to use that up.)

- Next on my list of crafty endeavors: flocking powder. There it was, sitting on the shelf of Martha Stewart-branded craft goods at Michaels...after a little bit of research, I've concluded that I could handle this, so one of these days when I'm feeling ambitious, I'll be busting out my glue sticks and seeing what happens.


1 comment:

CitizenBen said...

Good for you for jumping on the Nu-Who as it develops. Let me just tell you as someone who gets to see the episodes as they air on the BBC, you are in for a treat then next two weeks. Oh and that Amy Pond, what a minx (you'll see). Doctor Who continues to be one of my favorite things on television.

As for Torchwood, you have to understand the WHO-triumverate; Doctor Who (For everyone), Torchwood (For adults), & The Sarah Jane Chronicles (For kids). All are good, all have great moments. Sarah Jane is a bit more ham-fisted, but it's for kids, so I understand. Now when it comes to Torchwood the first season is good, the second season is excellent. Again let me drop a veiled foreshadowing on you, don't get attached to ANY of the characters. That show "pulls a Conan on you" quiet a bit.

I finally watched the new Clash Of The Titans, and I can't agree with you more. When it comes to acting chops Sam Worthington is a great underwear model. He is a modern day John Agar. And the Kraken was a bit of a let down as well. ALL that being said for a big dumb summer movie it was sort of entertaining, in a guilty pleasures sort of way.