Thursday, March 29, 2007

Oprah's Next Book Club Selection: Cormac McCarthy's "The Road"

Finally, it's my turn to write an Oprah-related post!

Yesterday, the Queen of All Media announced that the new selection for her uneven book club is "The Road," by Cormac McCarthy. I'm quite a fan of McCarthy, whom I picture as a steel-toed boot-wearing, tobacco-chewing, shady past-having good old boy who sees the world through death-colored glasses. His "Blood Meridian" was called one of the best novels of the past 25 years by the New York Times. This is true. It's also true that the book features babies hanging from trees.

"The Road," which I've not yet read, is typically bleak and beautifully-written according to all the reviews. It's a tale of a father and son trying to survive in a post-apocalyptic America. I seriously doubt that it has an uplifting ending.

I'm a little perturbed that a McCarthy book will have an Oprah seal of approval stamped on the covers of its next edition. This really dilutes his subversiveness, his badass-ness. It will be hard to fancy oneself an outlaw creating catastrophic violence along the U.S.-Mexico border when Oprah is encouraging stay-at-home moms across the nation to read the same books I do. But I suppose I should cast off this intellectual elitism and be glad people are reading literary fiction at all. After all, I wouldn't turn down the stratospheric book sales that come along with Oprah's endorsement.

One thing's for certain: Oprah's interview with McCarthy is going to be some delightfully uncomfortable television. The guy's old school, a recluse, and certainly won't take kindly to being asked any questions about his personal life. Set your DVRs, kids: this could be more squirm-inducing than Oprah's on-air chastising of James Frey.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Go See John Fugelsang's All the Wrong Reasons

Last Saturday, I saw John Fugelsang's one man show All the Wrong Reasons: A True Story of Neo-Nazis, Drug Smuggling, and Undying Love . You may remember John from such past gigs as co-host of America's Funniest Home Videos along with the illustrious Daisy Fuentes, and also co-host of The TV Guide Network's TV Watercooler along with the illustrious Debra Wilson. Ten fake dollars to the one who lets me know in which case I misused the word illustrious.

Anywhoo, sitting in the theatre Saturday night, it really smelled like DEAR JESUS LET THIS SHOW BE MY TICKET OUT OF EVER HAVING TO PROVIDE HIGH PITCHED VOICES FOR DOGS AS THEY ACCIDENTALLY RUN INTO GLASS DOORS. So since I enjoyed the show, and since John shared with us that he has a rather small marketing budget, I figured maybe any of the .5 people that read this might be interested in going.

Getchyo tickets here!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

WWHBOD? Answered!

The NY Times, obviously staying abreast of our concerns here at the trend-making Boob Tubers, ran an article today about HBO's plans for keeping subscribers around after The Sopranos finale airs.

Chief Exec Chris Albrecht, also known as the Scourge of Deadwood, seems in deep denial highly optimistic about the cable channel's prospects.

So says the article,

Mr. Albrecht said HBO was promising its customers the channel would deliver “the goods,” which he defined as “something you can’t get anywhere else.”

If by "goods" he means "bizarre foreign knock-offs" and "surf noir," then yeah, I suppose you won't find those anywhere else. Chris & Co. will be satisfying their viewers' need for shows about "the zen of surfing," "quantum physics," "a singing duo from New Zealand" and "Lily Tomlin." Speaking of Lily Tomlin, I imagine she could use the support right now.

As dubious as all this sounds, I'm going to hang in there with HBO. Considering I not only tolerate, but enjoy repeat episodes of Degrassi: The Next Generation, I think I can tough it out even if "the goods" backfire.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Jeopardy Three Way

Now there are three words I'll bet you NEVER thought you would see in one sentence/thought/anything...but it happened in the episdoe that aired last Friday, 3/16 when all three contestants ended the game with $16,000. The previous day's champion, Scott Weiss, did go into the bonus round with, like a $5,000 dollar lead, though, so I'll bet he was on top.

Also, I love Jeopardy so much.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Boob Tubers Mob-A-Thon, April 8, 2007

We woke up this morning and got ourselves....AN IDEA. This doesn't happen often. In fact, it happens even less frequently than comments on this blog from people we don't know. Which is why we've decided to reach out to our fellow, more successful entertainment bloggers with our very first BLOG-A-THON!

We at the Boob Tubers are quaking with excitement over the upcoming return of HBO's great ethnic white hope, The Sopranos. This is a show that built a network and changed television forever. And by changed television we mean introduced more cursing, boobies, overly long dream sequences, and scenes of fat men eating manicotti than any other program before. So in honor of this revolutionary series' final nine episodes, we present to you... THE BOOB TUBERS MOB-A-THON!

On April 8th, the date that the final Sopranos season premieres, we want you to write about telegenic and filmic interpretations of organized crime. From The Godfather to The Departed, from The Sopranos to The Black Donnellys, give us your thoughts on Mafiasploitation. Don't limit yourself to the traditional Italian Mafia - we also enjoy Russians, Chinese, and Jewish mobs. Because they're so cute!

Email with your intentions.
Post your Mob-A-Thon entry by 9:00 PM, EST, on Sunday, April 8th.
We will post a list of all participating blogs as entries are published on the 8th.
Please don't break our kneecaps.
This message has been brought to you by, the only known manufacturers of the bloody horse head pillow.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

TV Gets Gypped, WWHBOD?

Howdy howdy howdy! It's been a while, as I've been wandering the countryside much in the style of a Gypsy. Which is such a coincidence, because the first half of my post today is about Gypsies, or rather, the recent spike in Gypsy representation on television.

Full disclosure: I have some Gypsy in me. My great-great grandmother was all about Bohemia back when it was an actual place rather than something from a Rent song.

OK, OK, time to make a disclaimer before the Gypsy population of West Bushwick or wherever decides to flood this blog with complaints. (Edited to add disclaimer: Nothing in this blog is serious, except for the fact that shows about Gypsies exist. Oh, also the paragraph about mythologizing.) It's just weird because I've noticed a lot more Gypsies on TV than there used to be. Oh, and they prefer to be called Roma (because they roam-a around a lot! hahahaha!)

First was on House, in which a young Gypsy boy falls mysteriously, yet predictably ill, and his relatives stupidly, yet predictably fight House on his treatment. The boy's family are funkily dressed, vaguely ethnic weirdos who seem to have missed the boat on modern medicine despite living in suburban New Jersey. The father chews on toothpicks like a shady used car salesman and they all hate the boy's honky girlfriend. In fact, they refer to all honkies by a word I forgot - let's say it's Groosalug - that probably means "The Less Swarthy Ones Who Shall Not Be Named."

Now, on FX's new series The Riches, Eddie Izzard plays the patriarch of a Gypsy family that moves into some dead people's mansion and pretends its theirs. First of all, who knew there were so many Gypsies in the United States? I thought they were all flirting with Juliette Binoche in quaint French towns. Second, wouldn't a sweet manse like that go on the market right away, outting the squatters before they could say "American Dream"? Third, are Gypsies the new Little People? That is, a widely mythologized and misunderstood group of people for us normals to become fascinated with? If so, feel free to feature me in your new series, "Gypsies, Tramps, and Thieves," FOX Reality!

Another question on my mind lately is WWHBOD, that is, What Will HBO Do? In just a few months everyone's favorite curse-words-and-graphic-sex channel will be out of decent programs. They've axed Deadwood, Rome will end once Octavian becomes Emperor in two weeks, and The Sopranos - which has nose dived in quality anyway - will air its final nine episodes in May. After that, HBO doesn't have a leg to stand on, unless you consider Entourage a leg. (Which I don't. It's a trifle.) Deadwood's David Milch is currently developing a series called John from Cincinatti, which he describes as a "surf noir," and I describe as a "How? What? How?" I don't know, guys. Will the ol' Home Box Office get overpowered by Showtime or HBO Lite, as I like to call FX?

Saturday, March 10, 2007

The Secret ...

Have you all heard of ...The Secret? In a nutshell, ...The Secret, made available to the public in book and DVD form, preaches that the power of positive thinking can get you anything you want in life, ANYTHING. In this day and age, that tenet alone can't sell books and DVDs, but guess who can...Oprah! Oprah is swearing by this way of life, which kind of makes you wonder what she could be positively thinking for...the ability for billion dollar bills to come straight out of her ass into her platinum toilet bowl, instead of her "working" for them?

Anyway, if you actually watch ...The Secret DVD, you will notice that it has the same production value of my VHS taped eleventh grade project on The Great Depression, except my cinematography might have been a little better. The fine presentation of ...The Secret is all thanks to the work of the folks at Prime Time Productions, whose company biography I will now share with you:

Since mid 1994 Prime Time Productions has been a significant and consistently successful supplier of programming for the Seven, Nine and Ten Networks in Australia. The company to date has had several major series, the first the light entertainment family based - The World's Greatest Commercials and the second the reality/actuality based - Great Escapes. Prime Time has also branched out into the documentary field. The first program of this nature OZ Encounters - UFO's in Australia was screened on the Seven Network in November 1997. Learners a reality based docu-soap, fly-on-the-wall series aired on the Seven Network in 1999. Australia Behaving Badly, a candid camera style ethical dilemma series was made for the Ten Network. Romantic reality series Marry Me and the sequel Loves Me Loves Me Not were created for the Nine Network. Sensing Murder, a tele movie dedicated to solving unsolved murders in Australia screened initially on the Seven Network as a pilot episode, and on the Ten Network as a six part series of tele movies. Prime Time's latest production for the Nine Network is The Secret, an unprecedented worldwide event.

OH OH to be a fly on the wall during the meeting of the minds that led to the hiring of Prime Time Productions. In fact, that is EXACTLY what I want out of life. Let me positively think myself back in time and into the body of a fly...
Secret Guru 1: It is time...
Secret Guru 2: Time for what?
SG1: Why, to share our secret with the world!
SG2: YES! YES! It is getting lonely being the only ones who understand true happiness. Just yesterday, I positively thought for my love slave/100% accurate biological clone of Carmen Elektra to have crabs, just so I could know what it feels like to be normal again...
SG1: Precisely. I thought maybe I would just put a few shots of us being really, really happy up on youtube myself, but our secret would NEVER reach everyone that way. We can't compete with that cute little Asian girl singing. She's just TOO CUTE.
SG2: Come on, just yesterday we positively thought ourselves on top of a HUGE pile of Scrooge McDuck gold coins. We can get through this...
SG1: You're right...right now I'm...thinking...hard...that Spielberg will call...that Eastwood will e-mail...that Scorcese will ring the doorbell with a box of cannolis and an open heart...
SG2: And I am...postiviely...thinking...that we can book Prime Time Productions for the gig...
SG1:Wait! THE Prime Time Productions?! The ones behind World's Greatest Commercials!? Like they would even consider working with us!
SG2: Well I think the tone they captured in Oz Encounters- UFOs in Australia is really what we're going for here.
SG1: I'm sold! Let's get our thinking caps on!

And now, your moment of zen. And by zen I mean bullshit. Confirm or deny: this clip features Wilmer Valderama and a Genie!?!WTF?!

Friday, March 09, 2007

The Today Show, Awareness Tubers, and Vagina, 3/9/07

Don't know if you've heard about this story, but earlier this week three juniors at John Jay High school in Cross River, New York were suspended for saying 'vagina' during an open mic night. The girls were performing a piece from Eve Ensler's The Vagina Monologues, and had been told ahead of time by the school's principal to take the line about their boxes out.
As a result the girl's were suspended, and appeared this morning on The Today Show with some sort of school official and Eve Ensler herself. Their suspension is under consideration by the superintendent, especially in light of the fact that there were students using actual "curse words," if you will, and faced no punishment.

I'm going to go ahead and say that these girls shouldn't be suspended; they should be expelled. Not because Vagina is an inappropriate word. I totally went into my take back the night, college mode re: this issue and agree with Ensler's assessment that we shouldn't be forced to be ashamed of our bearded clams by an opressive male hegemony.

I think these girls should get the boot because they are...horrible, HORRIBLE actresses/public speakers. Today, sitting across from Meredith on the couch, their big break came. They were asked to deliver the controversial line. In unison, they sounded like my second grade Catholic school class reciting times tables. They could have gotten a walk on role on The Hills out of this if they managed to muster up some sort of talent. Now all they'll get is Smith's dream of what a college entrance essay should be.

I hope this helps others see exactly twat the real issue here is.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

The Big O, 3/6/07

You may accuse me of myself being gay for Oprah, as this will be my second consecutive blog about her, but I just have to get this off of my 36D chest.

Oprah is a homophobe with a capital phobe.

I am currently watching today's installment of daytime syndication's gem, and home girl hates the gays! Her guests are men and women who realized they were gay after already being in heterosexual marriages. She just asked a lesbian woman if she could tell who else is gay. And earlier, she was talking to a woman who was bi-sexual before coming out as a lesbian. Oprah then shared that her very gay hairdresser claims the only way he could have sex with a woman is if the face of a man were attached to the headboard. I think she could have just saved us all the second of our lives it took to listen to that sentence by instead spitting on the woman's face.

Seriously, Opes, I hope that the leadership academy is don't ask, don't tell...

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Thou Shalt Not Have False Idols

I hate American Idol. It's glorified karaoke. It's an overbloated juggernaut that crushes everything in its path. It pre-empts House and sends Lost scampering for a later time slot like a little bitch. It produces mediocre pop stars who don't write or compose any of their own material. It has, directly or indirectly, produced such inane phrases as "Soul Patrol" and songs like "Jesus, Take the Wheel." It prolongs the slow, painful deaths of the careers of inebriated wash-ups like Paula Abdul.

This article predicts that Lost will die after its fourth season, and the swan dive of its ratings are due in no small part to Idol. Lost ain't what it used to be, but it's still better than watching a limey make fun of autistic people who think they can sing.

To illustrate my hatred, I am going to give Sawyer-like nicknames to current Idol contestants:

Antonella Barba: Meadow Soprano
Sundance Head: The Other Farley Brother

I don't have any others because I don't watch the show and I don't know who the contestants are. But I hate them.