Tag Archives: entertainment

get down girl, go ‘head get down

28 Jan

I’m not the kind of person who sets goals to get done by certain dates. I know myself, I’m a procrastinator. I’m also someone who is really into doing something for a while and then I just forget about it or lose interest. So, I’m doing something different for myself. Now that January is ending, I’m giving myself a task for February: learn the dance for Robyn’s song “Call Your Girlfriend”. There’s no official dance for the song, as far as I know. But, Robyn shows off some sensational moves in the music video, and I want to learn everything she does so I can do it myself. I feel that this won’t be too difficult a task for me. I dance pretty similarly and I also love rolling around on the floor and doing somersaults, both backwards and forwards. It seems only right to me to learn the dance she does, since “Call Your Girlfriend” is forever on my pregame playlist. It’s just that good.

So, wish me luck, imaginary friends! This is one goal that I actually want to accomplish.

this post used to be much more relevant to my life, but thankfully, i’ve changed my ways

23 Jan

I’ll admit it: I used to genuinely like “Glee”. I guess I was a “gleek”, but that’s embarrassing, so we’ll forget I said that. As season one progressed and wrapped up, I found myself anxiously awaiting season two to premiere. Once that happened, however, I found myself confused. Nothing about the show made sense to me anymore. Everything that was refreshing about it in the beginning was growing stale.

I watched mercilessly through the entire second season and was left with mixed emotions; I was happy the season was over, yet sad because of how disappointing it was, and increasingly becoming angry because I sat through that pile of shit. So, less than enthusiastically, I watched the premiere of the third season. And you know what? It showed promise. It seemed like the show was going back to whatever roots I was under the impression it strayed away from and was going to entertain me and enter my heart yet again. However, I don’t know what happened during the third season, but what ultimately was handed to me was yet another heaping pile of shit that I was left to mourn over. I think I officially just hate “Glee” and have come to accept it.

So, with the fourth season recently beginning (I wrote this post originally in September, so yes, the new season was recently beginning), one would assume that I was not tuning in, avoiding “Fox” on Thursday nights from 9-10, moving on with my life. That’s partially true. I didn’t see the show when it originally aired, but thanks to modern technology, I caught it on demand while babysitting. So many people around me were trying to tell me that the fourth season premiere was good, that I would like it, that the new characters were good. How did I feel after I watched it? The same as I always feel: angry. Not with the show anymore, but with myself. The show is bad. I’ve accepted that. I was mad at myself because I continued to watch it and torture myself by doing so week after week. I have issues and I know that. I’m beginning to think I’m a masochist because I kept going back for more of the shit that’s being served to me. But something about the stupid show was pulling me back in and as much as I complained, I didn’t stop watching. So, I figured I’d put my complaining to good use and compile the five main reasons why I really hate “Glee”. Oh, there are so many more reasons, but I’ll try to just stick to five.

Side note: “Glee” went on a like four or five week break during the election season and that was just the jump-off I needed to stop watching the show. I quit it, cold turkey, and my life has never been happier. But, I avidly read PerezHilton.com and hate every second of it because Perez is a self-righteous piece of shit who constantly misspells words, forgets the rules of grammar, and also is just terrible at reporting everything, and “Glee” is still thrown in my face on a daily basis. So, this list still applies despite not watching the show anymore and being a masochist for it. I’m a masochist for other reasons, so it’s all good.

1)   The Characters

When the show first started, I liked the characters; they were diverse, accepting, albeit one-note, yet we were just getting to know them so this was all right. However, as the show has gone on, these characters have remained one-note. They have almost no depth whatsoever and essentially all have one definitive quality. Rachel: wants to be on Broadway. Kurt: proud gay kid. Mercedes: sassy black woman. Tina: quiet Asian. Artie: wheelchair kid. Brittany: stupid cheerleader. Not only are they completely one-note, but they’re also extreme stereotypes and walking clichés (or a rolling cliché in Artie’s case. Cue the drum set). The show is completely steadfast on keeping these characters in their molds, despite whatever storylines are created for them. Ultimately, they can all be defined by these descriptions for their entirety on the show.

What’s more annoying than these tried and tired character elements are the characters themselves. Many of them are not even likable. Rachel is extremely obnoxious. Yes, she can sing, but I honestly don’t care because she is so ridiculously annoying. What is frustrating is that all of the other characters know this and call her out on it constantly, yet they still continue to “love” her and talk to her out of school. If this were real high school, Rachel would be sitting at home alone on Friday nights, or maybe have one friend of equal or lesser obnoxiousness, and would not be invited to social functions. In this alternate “Glee” universe, however, Rachel not only has friends and is the leader of the “gleeks”, but she also dates the star of the football team. Like all right, I’ll in no way believe that.

Speaking of the star of the football team, Finn has got to be one of the most self-righteous and frustrating characters out there. Finn is not even that good of a singer, yet he gets all of the lead male parts in the glee club. That just doesn’t seem fair. He also called Santana out on being a lesbian, which just wasn’t appropriate and apparently thinks he is God for whatever reason. There was an episode where he was angry because Blaine, the new kid, was getting more solos than him in the club. Uh, yeah, that’s what fucking happens in glee club, Finn. If someone is better than you, they sing more than you do. Also, you can’t dance for shit, so what are you even doing here? Plus you called Kurt a “fag” once, and that was just mean. For some reason the glee teacher, a fully grown man (close to Finn’s portrayer’s age in real life) wanted him to be his best man at his wedding. That’s normal. I don’t get why Mr. Schu has no friends outside of glee club, but that’s really embarrassing for him. Also embarrassing is Finn thinking that him and Rachel were the hottest couple to hit the Earth. Like, I don’t care about you two. Get off of my screen. That was my thought every single time they were on my screen. Then they got engaged. In high school. Because high school relationships last forever. OH and you’re a fucking moron and thought you got Quinn pregnant even though you didn’t have sex. I just can’t even handle Finn.

So this brings me to Quinn. I had always been a Quinn fan. I liked that she was bitchy and mean, especially to Rachel, who absolutely deserved it for being a conceited loser (I’m a really nice person and word things very passively). But, as the seasons went on, I found myself becoming more and more confused as to why ANYONE would even speak to Quinn anymore. She sabotaged the glee club multiple times, cheated on boyfriends, helped boys cheat on their girlfriends, slapped Rachel across the face (I approve of that though), gave her baby up for adoption and then tried to get the baby back by setting up the foster mother to look like an asshole, dressed terribly (this has nothing to do with her character, I just hate her outfits), and so much more. On top of this, she got put in a wheelchair because of texting and driving and was STILL a huge prick to everyone about being prom queen. Like what is your issue? I don’t understand why people keep going back to being Quinn’s friend, but it’s high time people stop talking to her.

I believe what would have made the show better is when the students took a group trip to Six Flags (of which there are none around the area they live in), the bus should have crashed and killed all of them. It really would have been the best for everyone involved. Especially me.

2)   The Storylines

“Glee” has this problem in which they forget what has already happened in storylines. They completely change them when they want, add stupid details in that are insanely irrelevant, and some are just completely dropped and we are left with never understanding why it was even created to begin with.

I think my biggest issue with the storylines on “Glee” is those involving relationships. This show acts like high school relationships are the end of life, which I get they are in high school, but it’s annoying as fuck to watch. I was annoying enough when I was in high school about people’s relationships, I don’t need to relive all of that obnoxious shit for the sake of ratings. For example, when Kurt and Rachel were both planning to go off to New York for college, they both had to think about their relationships. As I said, Finn and Rachel get engaged (OKAY) because what else would they do? Just try to make it work long distance? No? Okay. Kurt and Blaine also stay together (I’m shocked they don’t have an extravagant gay wedding since “Glee” is so ridiculously cliché and over the top for shits and gigs), but the way they act about them being separated is so dramatic. I get it, you’re sad about leaving your boyfriend. But you know what? I don’t care. I had a boyfriend when I went to college and we were three hours apart. It worked for a little bit, then didn’t, and then the end. Yeah, it sucked at the time, but the end. I was in college. It was time for me to get drunk and develop crippling alcoholism instead.

The characters on “Glee” seem to constantly forget the past storylines and what has happened. As I mentioned with Quinn, she was a complete asshole to every single person in the glee club (I’m not even exaggerating, LITERALLY every single person), yet they must have all had collective amnesia and so they carried on thinking she was cool to them at all times.

The show also has a problem with re-hashing old storylines constantly. The biggest problem I can think of is that of Mercedes and her place in the glee club. I think that maybe ¾ of the first three seasons revolved around the idea that Rachel got too many solos in the glee club and Mercedes felt she deserved more. Like, yeah, I completely agree, but how about everyone do some Sudoku or crossword puzzles to keep their minds sharp so I don’t have to hear about some glee members being ignored again.

One of my least favorite episodes of season three had to be the Michael Jackson tribute episode. I’m all about tribute episodes, ESPECIALLY if they’re Michael Jackson-themed. However, the episode IMMEDIATELY set itself up as being a tribute episode. They didn’t even nicely string the songs along to fit in with the storylines, they actually announced at the beginning the MJ was the greatest singer/dancer of our time or some shit. Like, I love me some Michael Jackson, but how about we set up a story arc instead of just saying, “fuck it, we’re singing MJ songs”. It was kind of bullshit for me. But I guess I can’t expect more because they essentially did the same with Lady Gaga and Britney Spears (except for the recent “Britney 2.0” episode, in which they surprisingly did tie in why they were singing Britney songs).

This just makes me think about how the show, rather than adding the songs into the storylines, must choose what songs they’re singing first and then create storylines around those song choices. It’s so frustrating because problems are created where they don’t need to be. There’s just so much wrong with the stories, it’s stupid.

The show has a huge consistency problem. For example, the glee club made it to nationals twice. The first time, nationals were in New York and there were like thirteen competing teams. The New Directions didn’t even place in the top ten, and it deservedly happened that way. The next year they made it, there were only three competing teams and it was much less high profile. It probably explains why they actually won nationals that year. Less competition = more time for those assholes to spend being mediocre. Which brings me to my next point…

3)   The songs sound like Kidz Bop Covers

The majority of the cast of “Glee” have really amazing voices. Some of them, not so much, but for the most part, yeah, they can sing. Their individually performed songs are usually pretty good, but it’s when they do group numbers that they run into a problem.

For some reason, “Glee” finds it important to be relevant in music choices, and then they tend to choose the worst pop songs of today and cover them. The first episode of season four had a rendition of “Call Me Maybe”. Like, really? For a show that’s supposed to be so cutting edge, you’re covering “Call Me Maybe”, which came out months ago? All right, thanks. All of the songs seriously sound like they’re straight off of the Kidz Bop cds. That’s never a good thing.

I don’t really know what else to say about this other than the fact that the group songs sound like shit. Well, I guess I should add that the show should just end at this point.

Oh, I will add that it’s also completely ridiculous that the glee club puts on extremely elaborate performances when just rehearsing for Mr. Schu. Like, where the fuck did you get that budget and why does this not seem weird to any of them?

4)   The show pushes its morals on you

I totally get that “Glee” is trying to send a message out there. It’s saying to be yourself, be happy in your skin, don’t bully, accept one another, etc. etc. I get it, I really do. And you know what? I also believe those messages (ignore the fact that I called Rachel a “conceited loser” who deserved to be bullied for argument’s sake right now). But I don’t need them shoved down my throat every single fucking week. I get that that’s still your morals and you want me to remember that.

What’s more annoying than those morals being thrown at you constantly is that the characters don’t even embody what they’re supposed to be supporting. They’re all bullies. I don’t give a fuck what anyone says, they’re all assholes. They’re all mean to one another, say spiteful and hateful things, and I don’t think any of them would ever genuinely like one another or be friends. I get the show isn’t supposed to be realistic, but I at least like to be fooled into thinking that characters could actually hang out in real life. Not here. But anyway, back to my point, as I’ve said constantly, Quinn’s an asshole. Finn outed Santana then acted like he was God and did nothing wrong. They all call each other names. Artie has bullied pretty much every girl he’s dated (he called Brittany stupid and told Tina to dress differently) because he has a superiority complex and thinks he’s smarter than everyone. Literally every single person in that club has taken a massive shit on Rachel. But no, because they’re all outcasts and ostracized by others, this means that it’s okay if they bully each other, because they’re all victims. That is such shit to me. How about they practice what they preach on each other and treat each other well if they’re seriously considering that they’re all friends.

I think that one of the biggest issues this show presses on you is about gay rights and gay students. I totally support gay rights, but the show puts all of its anti-bullying eggs in that basket. I understand that that’s extremely in the limelight right now, but the other students being shit on by their classmates who aren’t gay should also probably do something about the fact that everyone hates them. If we’re shooting at our target audience of theater nerds, “Glee”, let’s be more inclusive about all victim groups in high school. This issue of bullying and gay rights leads has a lot to do with my final problem with the show.

5)   Offensive for the sake of being offensive

I feel that because “Glee” is making such strides in making the gay youth of America feel accepted, the creators think they can do and say whatever the fuck they want with the dialogue. Ryan Murphy is literally offensive because he can be, and it’s pissing me off.

The characters are racist as fuck. Almost all of them. It’s almost always brought up that Tina is Asian and that she dated another Asian. Rachel being Jewish is always a point of discussion, and there was an episode about her hating her Jewish nose. They literally called it her Jewish nose. The show HATES gingers with a passion, and after watching other Ryan Murphy shows, I see that’s a trend with him.

I really am a fan of Ryan Murphy’s work, I love “American Horror Story” and “Nip/Tuck”, but I feel that he is much better at making shows that are dramatic with dark comedy thrown in than straight up comedy. He literally gets license to say whatever the fuck he wants because the show has a moral about not bullying and tolerance or some shit being pushed at the end of every episode. If this is true, however, why is it okay for Sue to make derogatory statements to and about Kurt’s sexuality and the fact that he is feminine almost every episode? It just doesn’t make sense to me. For a show that is supposed to be about tolerance and acceptance, there is just so much other offensive shit going on.

And that’s the point, which makes me mad. I read an article saying that Ryan Murphy referred to himself as the “male Lady Gaga”. As unnecessary as it is for that statement to EVER be made by any person ever, all it says to me is that he does shit for shock value, because that’s how I view Lady Gaga. He pushes the envelope as much as he can on every single issue because he wants to and it’s getting so old. His new show, “The New Normal”, is somehow more offensive, and it gets away with it, because for some reason Ryan Murphy doesn’t follow the laws of common decency like the rest of it. I guess it explains why all of his characters think that they’re God when really, their shit stinks just like the rest of us.

So that’s just a glimpse as to why I hate “Glee”. It’s pretentious, obnoxious, the characters are unlikable, the music stopped being even somewhat good, and the plots conveniently always get lost and forgotten. The original ending to this post was about how I knew that I’d be watching “Glee” again on demand the next time I babysat, but I am so extremely overly proud to say that I have not watched the show since September or October, which I know is four years after I should have stopped watching the show, but for someone who has a habit of not being able to look away from car wrecks (this show is a car wreck), I’ve managed for the past few months to keep my eyes straight ahead, instead of cringing at what was beside me on the road (driving metaphors. So deep).

depression: the musical!

23 Jan

From what I have been taught to believe, sitcoms were created to make the audience laugh. As we can tell from my insane ramblings on “very special episodes”, they teach us to laugh at even the most depressing and disturbing of situations (child molestation? Children possibly found dead in fridges? Please hold while I stitch my sides back together!). But, sometimes sitcoms know how to actually handle a situation and make the audience feel something other than comfort from a show. Brian told me he wanted me to look into some of the saddest episodes of sitcoms, or just shows that we would never naturally watch and get upset about.

After an extensive Google search (and by extensive, I mean I typed “saddest episodes of sitcoms” into the search box and clicked the top answer), I found a list of clips already created of some of the saddest episodes of sitcoms. It’s called, “The 10 Weepiest Situation Comedy Episodes Ever”. Not surprisingly, “Scrubs” made the list three times. For anyone who watches “Scrubs”, like I used to do avidly, this makes sense. The show handles sad episodes all the time; it’s about a hospital for Christ’s sake. And sometimes, at hospitals, shit happens. Fortunately for me, some of the clips of the other episodes listed wouldn’t work anymore, which I was happy about because I really don’t feel like watching “M*A*S*H”. So, I’ll just put the site up and you can click the videos that I’m referring to. You’re welcome for putting no more effort into this post, but rather just copying off of what another list does.

Also, I’m nervous that this post won’t be that funny since I don’t really see humor in most of these scenes. That’s probably a downer. Sorry in advance :\

*SPOILER ALERT: If you watch “How I Met Your Mother” and for some reason haven’t seen the most recent season, there’s a heart wrenching clip on here you might want to avoid.

 http://www.pajiba.com/seriously_random_lists/the-10-weepiest-situation-comedy-episodes-ever.php

Scrubs “My Long Goodbye”: Yeah, so, Laverne is a well-loved nurse at Sacred Heart Hospital where the “Scrubs” crew chills (or works, whatever), and she gets into a car accident and dies. So, that alone is pretty depressing. Girl had sass coming out the ass; she was a real feisty one. RIP Laverne. But, so, everyone is preparing themselves to say goodbye to her, except for Carla, a fellow nurse, who can’t seem to let go and accept what’s happened. That’s also pretty depressing. She hallucinates Laverne with her all day. Also depressing is that Dr. Cox’s daughter is being born on the same day and he is trying to hide that fact because he doesn’t want her birth being associated with Laverne’s death. There are just so many layers of sadness here. It’s like one big emotional onion, continuously being peeled. The clip has the comic relief of Elliot telling that weird and stupid story about her friend in school that annoys me because Elliot annoys me, but also J.D., who is desperately wanting to be Dr. Cox’s daughter’s god-father, but it is all intricately woven together with the sad moments. “Scrubs” has an insane talent for that. So, the most depressing aspect of this clip is clearly the passing of Laverne, but I’d also like to argue that there is another depressing aspect at the end of the clip. The doctors go out for a beer and toast to Laverne, communally grieving and commemorating her, but J.D. and Jordan are left in her hospital room, waiting for people to arrive to meet the new baby. Is this sad to anyone else? I’m not even talking about how no one is visiting Jordan and her baby, but I mean how J.D. is not out with the rest of the doctors drinking to Laverne. If I were J.D., I know my feelings would be hurt. Crushed, really. I’d be crying when I found out they all drank together without me. And not only because I like drinking and being included in everything that my friends and acquaintances do, but because that was a really touching moment that they will all remember and J.D. didn’t get to be a part of it. I don’t know, I just think that makes the situation even sadder. I’m getting worked up thinking about it.

The Office “Jim and Pam’s Wedding”: I think that Jim and Pam’s wedding is really cute, but I don’t know if I would necessarily call it “weepy”. I’m looking for tears of sadness, website I found through a Google search, not tears of “awww that’s so cute. Michael Scott is funny; everyone almost messed up the wedding! Good thing Jim and Pam were smarter and knew ahead of time to make sure this didn’t happen. Awww, Jim and Pam are so cute”.

Futurama “Jurassic Bark”: K, so I used to watch “Futurama” when it was on back in the 90’s or whatever decade it was, then stopped because I just stopped caring, I guess. Whatever, I was over it and I don’t regret what happened. So, I have no idea what this episode was actually about. I’m assuming that Fry’s dog has been found fossilized. That seems to be fairly obvious. But whatever, this clip is actually so upsetting. I’m not someone who “cares” about “animals”. There was no need for the quotation marks around “animals”, I just thought it made me sound more dramatic. As my mother said earlier today, “I don’t like things that are alive and not human”. Wise words, mom. Wise words. But, this is just sad. Fry says he wonders how the dog became fossilized, so there is a flashback to 2000, when Fry was transported to the year 3000. The dog just sits there for what seems like years judging from that dude who works in the pizza shop’s changing appearance. Like, how depressing is that? The dog just sits. And waits. And the man brings him pizza but the dog doesn’t eat it. I don’t understand how the dog could have survived for years if it didn’t eat, but um, also, it hangs out in snow, so I’m genuinely confused as to how the dog lived as long as it did. And the dog’s face at the end. That is the face of sadness. Angels lose their wings when they see the face of that dog. Also, the music playing. I’m a sucker for music of the past (and by “past”, I don’t mean the 90’s when we were all into boy bands and now it’s wicked cool to be into them again). The music playing in this scene just gives it a different feel than if the dog was sitting there in silence or something. It makes it nostalgic and you know what’s going to happen to the animal. Damn, that was actually really upsetting. Come on, Matt Groening. That was dark.

Scrubs “My Lunch”: All right, so this episode is about J.D. finally receiving love and friendship from Dr. Cox after one of his patients dies or something and it seems like all is good. There’s this wicked annoying patient on it that was on the show during one of the first seasons and she’s back. She dies and there are three patients waiting on organs, so they finally have their donor. Also, Dr. Cox is a good friend with one of the patients, so he is very pleased. I bet you’ve all figured out exactly where this is going now, huh? Well, you’re all correct. That organ donor has rabies and they didn’t find out until after all three other patients had been given her organs. You all guessed that, right? I’m just going to assume so. You’re all so smart. Yeah, so all three patients die and Dr. Cox just gets real mad and forgets all of the words of advice he gave to J.D. earlier about his patient dying. This actually isn’t that sad. They could have picked a much better clip if need be that this website had a three “Scrubs” episodes quota to reach. Like there’s one where this lovable old lady who has been in the hospital for a while is finally being released, and then this screw up intern gets her sick again and she doesn’t realize it and “Fix You” by Coldplay is saying so it’s all just so upsetting. But whatever, this website. You do you, I’ma do me. Dipset.

How I Met Your Mother “Bad News”: So, this website only has a picture of this episode for some reason, so I’ll include a 13 second YouTube clip because I can’t find a longer one that makes sense or is in English. Essentially, Marshall and Lily are getting nervous because they’re having trouble getting pregnant. They’re both tested and Marshall is extremely nervous because he’s afraid it’s him that’s the problem. Throughout the episode, they show flashbacks and continuous clips of Marshall calling his father for advice and to give him good news. His father always answers and is sitting in his same garage working on something. So, Marshall gets the good news that he isn’t baron or something and he calls his dad and his dad doesn’t answer the phone and the scene shows the garage, but Marshall’s father isn’t there. Marshall’s wicked excited though so he ignores this as being weird. He runs out to talk to Lily and she tells him that his father passed away. This is really depressing and upsetting because as opposed to other shows, like “Scrubs”, which doesn’t have a laugh track/live audience, “How I Met Your Mother” does, so it’s always extremely unsettling to me when shows with laugh tracks have no one laughing. If there’s a real audience there, I can’t imagine how uncomfortable all of them felt. I’m assuming it wasn’t a real audience, I feel like an ass for even suggesting there could have been. But yet, that’s always so off to me. Also, “How I Met Your Mother” gets laughs constantly, so it’s even more disturbing that it’s just Jason Segel being sad. Also, it’s Jason Segel. JASON SEGEL SHOULD ONLY BE SAD AND CRYING TO BE HUMOROUS LIKE HE DID IN “FORGETTING SARAH MARSHALL” WHEN HE HAS SEX WITH THAT WOMAN AND THEN CRIES. I’m sorry, I got worked up. I just love Jason Segel and never want to see him sad. Seriously though, this episode almost made me cry the first time I watched it. It’s just so unnatural with the rest of the show.

The Wonder Years “Independence Day”: Damn, this was the final episode of “The Wonder Years”. My God, do I love that show. That’s a damn good show, right there. A damn good show. So coming of age. So many noogies. So many girls wearing three pigtails (there was actually only one). So, I forget what happens this entire episode. If you asked me to name what happened in this episode from memory before I watched this clip of the last four minutes, I’d say that I remembered one thing happening, but really, so much occurs. So, apparently Kevin Arnold hasn’t been home in a long time and apparently neither has Winnie Cooper. But they’re back for the fourth of July for some reason unknown to me. Paul’s still weird looking as fuck, so he has that going for him. Good thing him and Kev stay in touch later, huh? And apparently Kevin wasn’t speaking to his family at this point. Also, his rebellious hippy sister is pretty pregnant which he didn’t know about so how fucking long has Kevin been gone? What’s going on here? I could easily look it up, but I’d rather be confused. All right, so Kevin tells the audience what happens to everyone later in life because the show is ending. Damn, I’ve been watching “Boy Meets World” pretty much daily these past few weeks and those Savage brothers really look a lot alike which I never thought when I was younger. Also, can I say, Fred Savage, hubba hubba. You know what I mean? Kid’s a real cutie. Anyway, so his sister, mother, and brother apparently just go on to live the lives that you’d expect of them. I guess. I don’t even know anymore. But here’s the killer: Kevin says that his weird looking brother took over the family business in two years…when their father dies. Like okay. Right there. That alone, that statement alone is going to make me cry. Obviously he has to die at some point, but two years? That’s it? That’s so unbearably depressing to me. Especially since Kevin says that they mended their relationship. Obviously that’s really good, but they only get two more years together. All of the kids are still relatively young then. And their poor mother. That right there all kills me. And you just weren’t expecting him to say it. Pretty sneaky, Kevin Arnold. So, that was the only thing I remembered about how the episode ends. I kind of just assumed that Winnie and Kevin stay together, but then he drops that other bombshell that he greeted Winnie when she came back from Paris…with his wife and kids! Kevin! What is this shit?! I understand that “The Wonder Years” was different from other family shows at the time in that it displayed more realistic depictions of family life and real life and blah blah blah , and I get that Winnie and Kevin staying together, especially during that time period and after she’d been in Paris for 8 years, is cliché and unrealistic, but I don’t give a shit. I’m the number one person who hates when things are cliché and expected, but I don’t care. Kevin Arnold and Winnie Cooper belong together. This was just depressing on so many levels. I don’t believe in love anymore.

Scrubs “My Screw Up”: When Brian first brought up the idea about writing on really sad episodes of sitcoms, this was actually the first episode of a television show that came to mind. I cried when I first saw this episode. And I cried when I watched it again. “Scrubs”: triple threat. Killin it. So, Brendan Fraser plays Dr. Cox’s wife/exwife/wife’s brother who he is best friends with. In either the first or second season, he’s introduced and they find out that he has cancer. I think Leukemia. So, that in itself was depressing. But, then they brought him back in the third season and he chilled with Dr. Cox the entire episode, being fun and charming and making us laugh the entire way. Until this clip. Dr. Cox talks about his son’s birthday party during the episode and he apparently thinks that’s where he is, even though I think it’s kind of clear from the background and his outfit that he’s not going to a child’s birthday party. Then Brendan Fraser says something ominous and weird that Dr. Cox doesn’t understand and it’s revealed: Brendan Fraser has died. I don’t remember the full episode well enough to know if there was a time earlier in it that we might pick up that he’s died, but from what I recall from my initial reaction seeing it for the first time, we’re completely blindsided by the death. As far as I remember, we have no idea that he’s going to be dead, perhaps he’s even been dead the whole time. Who knows? We were tricked. Pretty rude. But anyway, this is sad. This is real sad. It’s always sad when Dr. Cox gets sad and shows emotion since he’s such a sassy beast in every other episode. Also, again, the music is so perfectly placed here. That Zach Braff, he knows his music selection. This episode will always succeed in getting me teary eyed. And that is a job well done, “Scrubs”.

So, I guess those are some sad episodes of shows, as according to this website. I agree with them. It’s kind of weird looking at more recent shows, as opposed to shows that were absolutely terrible in the 80’s and 90’s and no one realized. Maybe we’ll look back in 20 years at these shows and realize they’re terrible, but who has time for that now? No one. Literally no one. Because we can’t fast forward and see what’s going on then. I miss my older shows. They’re so much easier to make fun of and not feel bad about making fun of them. Although, I have no feelings, so I don’t really know how my emotions would function. It’s anyone’s guess, really. If anyone finds out or has a guess to venture, I’m willing to listen. And then I’m willing to ignore you.

why did i go to college? pt 2: i’m thinking about asking umass amherst for a refund because they didn’t teach me any of this shit

23 Jan

Pre-cursor: The first paragraph of this post isn’t going to make a lot of sense because Brian’s website had a completely different set-up. My main page had an info box that I said I went to UMass in, and my twitter feed was posted below it. So, that should really get you all caught up on everything that is happening in the first few sentences of this post. Peace.

So as I’ve previously stated, I recently graduated from college. By “previously stated”, I mean that I wrote it in that little info box on the side of the screen, above my awesome twitter feed (@alainpennylaine. follow me, I’m hilarious). After watching so many “very special” clips, I question my entire education. All of the money and time I spent at school drinking and ignoring my work could have been so much better spent watching 80’s and 90’s television. That’s essentially what I’ve learned from this experience. I would be so much more street-wise and worldly had I just watched continuous television, specifically that focusing on intense 80’s era issues.

Now, I will conclude my two-part investigation into the television world of years past; the lessons taught, the lessons learned, the lessons coming out all confusing and leaving the audience with no idea of how they are supposed to take in what they just watched. I personally like the fact that I have no frame of reference for half of the clips I watched. I think that a true test of how effective a “very special episode” is depends all on knowing nothing about context and then trying to decipher the message for myself. So, here I go again, down that road of “very special” clips.

Side note, as I said in the last post, since a lot of these clips overlap with ones from the last documentation I presented, I’m just going to comment on those that I did not talk about before. Unless a previous one really confuses me still or confuses me more. Then I really can’t not comment on it. I can’t not state my confusion. Being confused about life and what is in front of me is one of the three states of being I can accurately project, along with being bitter and being angry. I’m also really good at being judgmental and condescending. I’m a fun person to hang out with in your spare time.

– Saved By The Bell “Peer Pressure”: So, this is the episode that the Public Service Announcement from the last clip compilation came from. Kelly’s lucky that she was already totally popular, so not smoking a doobie with a pop star didn’t ruin her reputation. Why these “Saved By the Bell” kids were so popular is really beyond me. I was always taught to give into peer pressure and drink and smoke at all times to be cool. At least she wasn’t taking caffeine pills. The only way anyone on that show could be more embarrassing is if they took caffeine pills. Way to go, Jessie Spano. Except Lisa Turtle is cool. Girl only cared about shopping and openly hated Screech. We would have been really good friends.

– Major Dad “Child Abuse”: I have absolutely no idea what the hell “Major Dad” is about, but I can assure that I am in no way interested in finding out. Next.

– Small Wonder “Cigarettes”: Okay, for a show that was about a cyborg girl or something, that clip should have been a LOT cooler. First of all, the girl wasn’t even in the clip. She’s the only reason I’d watch that show and she wasn’t even present for the clip. Second of all, who are these children and where is the cyborg? Oh, I’m sorry, did I just present the same point twice? I don’t care, the show has a robot on it and for some reason they weren’t chronicling every single moment of the robot’s life. They should have had a scene of her smoking cigarettes. That would have been something else.

– Valerie’s Family “Virginity”: Damn, look at young Jason Bateman there. So much hair. What a little cutie. He’s trying to tell me he’s a virgin in this scene? I doubt that. The kid was on “Silver Spoons”. Him and Ricky Schroeder must have been surrounded by eligible bachelorettes when they were like ten. Maybe it’s because he’s wearing that white turtleneck in this clip. That’s never a good choice, Jason. That alone screams “virgin”. Again, I have a problem of separating characters from their actors. And I don’t care.

– Charles in Charge “Fugitives”: I really have no idea what’s happening here. Talk about no frame of reference, huh? Can you let me know what the consequences are? Or why there are consequences? Or why Scott Baio recently had a television show? All valid questions. If he’s not Chachi, I simply don’t care what he’s doing.

– That’s So Raven “Shoplifting”: There is literally nothing in this scene to analyze. It’s just a boy very visibly putting something into his pants. How he didn’t get caught is beyond me, that kid sucks at stealing. Absolutely no form.

– Punky Brewster “Cocaine”: What the fuck? Seriously? How old are these girls? Where did they get any of these drugs let alone all of them? They seriously look twelve or younger. Maybe I was just raised in an extremely sheltered environment or maybe I was just missing out because I didn’t chill in an extremely sweet treehouse like these chicks, but there’s something incredibly off about this scene that I absolutely cannot relate to. Or perhaps I relate to it too well and that’s why I’m trying to play it off as being too unrealistic. You be the judge. (Answer: it really in no way relates to my life. I’m just jealous because I want that treehouse). Also, thanks for saying all the street terms for the drugs, blonde girl.  Also, thanks for having braces and doing coke. You’re really a role model.

– Saved By the Bell “Homelessness”: Okay, this is seriously one of my favorite episodes of “Saved by the Bell” ever. It’s up there with the caffeine pills. The best part about this homelessness storyline is that Zack’s family takes in that homeless girl and her dad who shaves in the bathroom at the mall, and they’re told that they can stay as long as they need to, until the father who shaves in the bathroom at the mall can get a job. Then they’re never seen again. Never seen again, never heard from again, never spoken of again. That’s a tad concerning. I guess Zack’s Aryan family couldn’t handle it and had to kick them out. Also, I really think Zack and that blonde girl, Laura, boned on the reg. No way they couldn’t not have. They were living under the same roof and Zack is a stud. I’m not judging her for that. I think we’d all do the same.

– Mr. Belvedere “Predators”: If I had to choose any episode of “Mr. Belvedere” to watch after the one about Danny having AIDS, it would probably be this one. No one seems nearly concerned enough that this kid was pretty much molested. And that doesn’t sit well with me. Where’s Danny when you need him?

– The Facts of Life “Cerebral Palsy”: Yeah, I’m not going to comment on this one. That’s a little much.

– The Partridge Family “Runaways”: Uh, okay. Should I care about this clip? Who’s this girl? I assume a runaway, but like, who cares? She’s not one of the Partridges and I assume she’ll be gone after this episode, so I am going to invest no time or energy on her. Where’s Danny Bonaduce? That’s really my main concern. I’m afraid he’s off punching transvestite prostitutes again.

– What’s Happening!! “Bootlegging”: God DAMN Rerun!!! You can’t tape record a concert, ESPECIALLY not a Doobie Brother’s concert!! If Rerun wasn’t such a sick dresser, I’d be angrier with him. But you can’t stay mad at that red beret for too long. Especially if he starts dancing. They really should have just put in a clip of him dancing. That’s where the magic is. Look it up. I not only suggest, I insist. Also, I feel like the Doobie Brothers wouldn’t give too much of a shit about having their show tape-recorded. As long as they had their doobies waiting for them, I think they’re all set 😉 😉 😉 :p Get it? Doobies.

– Moesha “Birth Control”: Uh, no girl with that haircut, the pill and the condom will not make you overdose, take a health class. Thanks.

– The Golden Girls “Gambling”: Gambling may be one of the worst subjects for a “very special episode” out there. It’s seriously such a cop out and I am just so not interested in it. I don’t even care to comment further because it’s such a stupid storyline to me. Maybe throw some gambling in between a story about an unwed teenage mother with a learning disorder and an interracial couple who just started doing crystal meth in a small town, and then I’d sing a different tune.

– Step By Step “Dyslexia”: I guess I’m glad to see that the family on “Step By Step” handles the subject of dyslexia a little bit differently than the Huxtables. Don’t get me wrong, jumping up and cheering seems like a completely normal response, but I think people would expect to hear the special soft music come on when sharing information like that. Also, who exactly has dyslexia? I used to watch “Step By Step” and I’m pretty sure it’s not that little glasses kid. Too bad the clip cut off, huh?

– Good Times “VD”: I hate Jay Leno. Thinking about him having any sort of sexually transmitted disease makes me want to cry. In fact, thinking about him having sex in order to get the disease makes me even more upset and disgusted. I don’t know if I can carry on now with those mental images in my mind. At least JJ has that sweet bucket hat on. Funny story, Brian and I have a cousin who calls herself JJ and used to wear bucket hats. My point is that I’m trying to get the image of Jay Leno having sex out of my head and it’s not working. I think I need to try to move on.

– Family Ties “Pills”: I wasn’t aware that people just always referred to pills as “amphetamines”, but okay, dad from “Family Ties”.

– Welcome Back, Kotter “Pills!”: Right, more pills. Clearly an epidemic. Or clearly the most vague category to create a “very special episode” about. Smooth move, television.

– Mr. Belvedere “Pills!!”: I know I talked about this episode in the last post, but really? Pills again? All right, that’s enough.

– Diff’rent Strokes “Kidnapping”: I’ve seen other clips of this episode. This is from that time on “Diff’rent Strokes” when they got rid of some characters and it was really apparent to the audience that there was something seriously wrong with Gary Coleman and he was not in fact “adorable” as time went on, so they threw on some ugly ginger kid and decided to get him kidnapped. No big loss to me, Mr. Drummond. I would have just let the kid figure it out. That’s just my opinion. Also, how unrealistic is this? A ginger kid getting kidnapped? Aren’t people trying to get rid of gingers, not take them in? (I joke, I have nothing against gingers, I just couldn’t not make a ginger joke. That kid, Sam, sucked).

– iCarly “Honoring Military Families”: Boring, this is from like last year, that’s not of interest to me, bring me back clips from the 80’s and 90’s.

– Webster “Fire Safety”: How old do we all think Emmanuel Lewis is here? He has the same thing as Gary Coleman, in that he looked like a child far beyond the age that he actually was a child. At least he was actually cute. And Webster is such an adorable name. Poor little guy, getting caught in a fire. That sentence might seem creepy if he was in his 40’s when this episode was shot.

– A Different World “Adoption”: The episode of “Boy Meets World” when Eric contemplates adopting a kid for some reason unknown to me and everyone else is way better. Try harder next time, “A Different World”.

– Smart Guy “Online Predators”: I was hoping this clip would make the list. “Smart Guy” is such a good show. And this episode was really confusing. I saw this when I was younger and since “Smart Guy” was on the Disney channel and I was a naïve young girl, I had no idea what was happening or why. I just wanted to watch TJ Henderson make fun of people because he was infinitely smarter than them and only like ten or some shit. I didn’t want to see some guy try to take pictures of him in his basement.

– Hannah Montana “Diabetes”: This is really fucking stupid. Recent “very special episodes” of TV shows suck. Stop trying.

– Maude “Abortion”: You go “Maude”! You deal with abortion and show no shame. My only confusion about this scenario is that Maude seems like she’d be well into menopause, so I don’t think it was physically possible for her to get pregnant. But whatever, what do I know? I’m not a doctor.

– Punky Brewster “Illiteracy”: Shit, the kids on “Punky Brewster” have it rough. I’m pretty sure Punky and all of her friends are orphans. That blonde chick was pushing drugs on everyone. That girl was sleeping or dead in the fridge in that clip from the last post. I still have no idea what the answer to that is. No one in that town can catch a break.

– The Fresh Prince “Guns”: It’s no Carlton on speed, but Carlton with a gun is pretty good, too. But I’m a little concerned that he was carrying that into a hospital room. I’ve never seen this episode, so I can only assume he went in to shoot Will because he’d never have his sense of fashion. And that’s really not the way to go, Carlton.

– Silver Spoons “Bullies”: AWWW poor baby Ricky Schroeder with a black eye. Why do bullies always want milk money? Why do kids always seem to have milk money on television shows? I’m pretty sure not everyone buys milk at school. Sucks for the kid who didn’t bring his milk money that day, I guess. I doubt Ricky didn’t bring any though because I’m pretty sure the entire premise of the show is that Ricky is rich or some shit like that. I think his dad was a toy maker. There’s no way in hell Ricky wouldn’t have his milk money. Unless he came to school with a golden goblet encrusted with jewels and filled with milk. In that case, bad day to bring your goblet, huh Ricky?

– Too Close for Comfort “Rape”: Uh, okay, I saw some clips from this episode of this show on a Cracked.com list about fucked up storylines and it was disturbing. This like, slightly mentally handicapped guy is raped by these heavyset women and everyone makes jokes about it. At one point, I’m pretty sure the guy talking in this clip says he’d let it happen again. So that’s just utterly disheartening and I really don’t like the fact this “Too Close for Comfort” show ever existed. I’m uncomfortable now.

– Growing Pains “Drunk Driving”: Nice, a drunk driving storyline. I’d expect to run across more of these through this extensive research, but I guess everyone in the 80’s was too busy on amphetamines to consider drinking. Also, watching this clip just makes me question where Boner, the loveable neighbor, was during all this poor decision making happened. You know a guy named Boner would never let this fly.

– Full House “Eating Disorders”: Another amazing episode. The best part is when DJ says she’ll eat her sandwich but then gives the sandwich to the dog and says she’s fat or something. And then she goes to the gym and passes out. It’s classic sitcom scenario. According to TV, people get eating disorders that involve immediate crash diets that consist of absolutely no eating and incorporating physical activity, and then fainting. Then suddenly, the disorder is gone. Just like real life, huh guys? Television. Always teaching life’s lessons properly.

– Blossom “Interracial Couples”: I just like the roughly four audience members who laughed. I don’t know if they were supposed to or not. And I feel like they didn’t know, either.

– George Lopez Show “School Violence”: I refuse to comment on anything George Lopez is involved with. Not worth my time.

– That’s So Raven “Discrimination”: God, don’t you love it how straightforward people are with their intolerance and racism? Happens on a daily basis, especially in department stores. Good work, “Raven”.

– Mr. Belvedere “AIDS”: DAANNNYYYY!!!!!! My precious angel has returned to my life, warming up my heart and bringing tears to my eyes. I kinda hate that this is the only clip available of the episode, though. I want more Danny, and I want it NOW.

– Sesame Street “Death”: Okay, so this episode was created because Mr. Hooper died in real life and “Sesame Street” saw it as a great opportunity to teach the audience about death. They were right and it is insanely depressing because Big Bird can’t grasp the concept. I don’t feel like insulting this clip, so instead I’ll point out that I just started typing “Big Beard” instead of “Big Bird”. Oh, Alaina. You’re losing it, girl.

– Happy Days “Racism”: Oh ho ho, another scene of the audience laughing at racism. They just can’t get enough of those fiery old racist ladies. So cute and endearing. What a sweetheart.

– Punky Brewster “Refrigerator Safety”: SERIOUSLY this clip. What is this? It still hasn’t been explained. Also, I need to point out that the caption for this is “refrigerator safety”. So I’m going to assume from the caption that this girl didn’t understand that fridges are for food and not for sleeping, and she has to face the consequences for her bad behavior. I really can take nothing else out of what the fuck has been placed in front of me.

– Boy Meets World “Cults”: RIP Mr. Turner (??????????)

– The Facts of Life “The KKK”: Right, so, I’m not given much to go off of here. That’s an extremely loaded clip because of what it means, but also, where do they go from there? What’s the point of saying that? Is it because Blair is friends with Tootie? I actually have no idea who the person she even mentioned is; I assume it’s a family member because Blair is kind of an asshole from the south. I mean, I guess I need to assume it’s a family member. I’m just lost. I don’t understand why that information was shared and I want someone to explain it.

– The Fresh Prince “Dead Beat Dads”: This clip makes me feel awkward. I really dislike when the show’s comic relief is given serious storylines and have to actually act. It bothers me. I feel like I’m supposed to laugh at them because that’s the point of the character, but what they’re saying is in no way funny. Also, I feel like the audience should have cheered Will after that speech, but instead there was just complete silence. That is really unsettling to me. Can we also notice how AGAIN the final clip in one of these compilations of “very special moments” is of “Fresh Prince”? They don’t do intense often, but when they do, DAMN do they hit hard. That Banks family, they just bring the drama. But seriously, I feel like this show usually gets laughs every ten to twenty seconds, so going this long without any sound other than Will screaming chills me and I’d rather it never occur.

All right. So that was that. My extremely in-depth exploratory surgery into the realm of the sitcoms of yesteryear is complete. What have we learned from all of this? The answer is everything. We’ve learned every single thing in the world that there is to learn, because television is a better teacher than I’d ever be, and better than I’ve ever had.

Now I have to spend all week thinking about something different to write for next week since I clearly killed these “very special episodes” analyses. I beat them to death. There’s no need to ever touch upon them ever again. Unless we’re talking about Danny, of course. He’s our nation’s hero. But, yeah. So that’s that. Falcon out.

why did i go to college? pt 1: everything i needed to know i learned from sitcoms

23 Jan

So, as I clearly mentioned in my last post, “very special episodes” are amazing. They were huge in the 80’s, but after some extensive YouTube research, apparently they’ve been used more recently as well (mostly by the Disney Channel), but on shows that were directed at me when I was twelve. I watched those shows when I was twelve, and I took nothing out of them. That shows you how affective the Disney Channel is at teaching me about the tough times in life.

For this post, I decided to delve further into the “very special episodes” of our television past. But, it was too hard for me to just choose one episode to focus on. Instead, I found two awesome compilations of very special episodes, each of which I will go through clip-by-clip and make fun of. Some of the clips overlap, so that makes life easier for me. Now, watch this video so you can understand what I’m talking about. This post is useless for you if you don’t watch these amazing, breath-taking clips.

Saved By the Bell “Drug PSA”: Okay, yeah, I want to point out that this was a public service announcement that they characters made at the end of the episode. For some reason unknown to me, only these six students were chosen to make special appearances in the video. I’ll never understand why these six have so much power at their school. Especially Screech. I don’t think that there has ever been a worse TV character than Screech. He’s literally the worst. And what makes me hate him more is that the audience actually laughed after he did his bit. Like, no thanks. I’d rather we ignore his existence.

Family Matters “Steve Gets Drunk”: Urkel shouldn’t have been allowed to leave the house, let alone be under the influence of anything. Also, I know I’ve seen this episode, but I don’t remember it. Was Urkel invited to this party? Did he just show and drink too much in order to try to fit in? Either way, any party that Urkel shows up to should be canceled on the spot. How does he catch onto the building? That just seems so unrealistic. As someone who is constantly drunk, I know that there is no way anyone could have this dexterity. Especially Urkel, who is a known idiot. Also, I feel like they could have used a better character to talk about binge drinking with. Like, choose literally any of the other characters and they would be more realistic and relatable. Urkel is a joke. The audience actually laughs when he says, “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up”. That’s terrible. HE’S ABOUT TO FALL AND DIE. Not a time to be laughing at his dated joke, studio audience.

Full House “Stephanie and Cigarettes”: I love “Full House”. It’s pretty embarrassing. This is a pretty great episode, but only because Stephanie embarrasses the shit out of herself. She literally can’t do anything right with the popular girls. Including looking cool by even pretending to smoke. Stephanie sucks. The people who made this YouTube video should have chosen the clip where the kid in Stephanie’s class is getting abused by his father. At least Stephanie doesn’t look like an idiot in that one.

Fresh Prince “Carlton on Speed”: Damn, Carlton on speed is hysterical. The idea that students just carry speed around with them is so great. It’s such a common thing in the television universe. As much as I love to watch Carlton dancing while on speed, the person who made this should have showed the clip where he’s in the hospital and discovers that he took speed. That part is amazing because Carlton thinks he’s a drug addict based off of the one time he accidentally took speed. Accidentally. “Fresh Prince” made a “very special episode” based off of the idea that someone accidentally took a drug. We’ll move on.

Home Improvement “Brad Smokes Pot”: I can’t take this clip too seriously, or even the concept of it, because I know that Tim Allen used to be a coke dealer. Everything he does is discredited from then on. You go on and smoke weed, Brad. Go on with your bad self. What’s your dad gonna do? Sell you coke? Maybe. He’s better at that than fixing shit, that’s for damn sure (side note: I’ve chosen here to not separate Tim Allen the man and “Tim Taylor” the character. They’re essentially one in the same).

Family Ties “Uncle Ned’s An Alcoholic”: Hey, look, it’s Tom Hanks. This clip gets a pass, Tom Hanks can do nothing wrong in my book. Next.

Degrassi “Liberty’s Pregnant”: Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha the idea that someone would have sex with Liberty disturbs me to this day. I could never take this clip seriously due to how unrealistic it is based on that one fact alone. Also, spoiler alert, JT dies the next season. Way to ruin everything, Liberty.

Diff’rent Strokes “The Pedophile”: Okay, I’ve actually seen this episode in full. I’m really upset with how little they show of it in this video. It is honestly really disturbing. It’s one of those episodes where things just get worse and worse for literally every single person on the show. Like, nothing good happens. And the audience has absolutely no idea how to handle what they are seeing. Essentially, it is the quintessential “very special episode”. That’s just my opinion. And my opinion is all that matters. I suggest everyone watch the full episode. Now. At this moment.

The Cosby Show “Theo’s Dyslexic”: Uuuhhh…right, I don’t think I’ve ever seen this episode of “The Cosby Show”, but from the looks of it, I guess the Huxtables are pretty into learning disorders. So that’s kinda weird.

Punky Brewster “The Refrigerator”: What the fuck? Is that girl dead? “Punky Brewster” really did an amazing job at singlehandedly portraying the homelessness epidemic in our country. Unless that girl is dead. Then I’m just deeply disturbed. Why is she there?

Captain Planet “High on Bliss”: Yeah, not 100% sure what “bliss” is, but this kid seems to be pretty into it. And who are we to tell him to not do what makes him happy?

Boy Meets World “Shawn Joins a Cult”: What a weird concept to do an episode on. Like, was joining a cult so prevalent in the 90’s that we had to have a full episode addressing it? I’m pretty sure Jonestown was in the 70’s, so I’m at a loss (I just googled it and I was right, Jonestown was in the 70’s). Also, this episode marked the last appearance of Mr. Turner, the third most beloved teacher at John Adams High (I count Eli as the second most beloved. He was just so cool). Show some respect to the apparent death of Mr. Turner.

Dinosaurs “Robbie Does Steroids”: All right, I don’t understand what Disney was trying to do. You can’t use a show that is centered on the idea that a family of dinosaurs walks and talks like humans and live in a developed society to push ANY political or moral matters. What were you thinking Disney? Robbie can do as many steroids as he wants; he’s a fucking dinosaur.

Mr. Belvedere “Amphetamines”: Unless Danny is on the TV talking about having AIDS but other than that being pretty good, I don’t care about “Mr. Belvedere”.

Home Improvement “Randy Might Have Cancer”: When the fuck was there an episode where Randy might have cancer? How did I miss that? This show chooses really weird topics to bum everyone out with. Also, Jonathan Taylor Thomas: still a fox.

Lizzie McGuire “Miranda’s Eating Disorder”: I remember watching this episode when it first aired (when I was 12) and being confused as to why Miranda had an eating disorder for legit one day and then passed out immediately. I’ve gone like twenty-four hours without eating before and I didn’t pass out. This is just another example of how Miranda sucks and deserved to be phased out by the end of the show. Also, “I’m outie”. She really was.

Beverly Hills, 90210 “Donna’s Abusive Boyfriend”: Yeah, so the acting in this is horrible. That’s what stands out to me the most to me. It’s really the worst when a show is trying to educate on an important issue and then the acting is painful so you ignore everything else happening.

Saved By the Bell “Hooked on Caffeine Pills”: Hands down the best episode of “Saved By the Bell” EVER. It is the most ludicrous concept ever to be shown on any television program. Jessie becomes addicted to caffeine pills. Who the fuck takes caffeine pills? Jessie, you’re such a nerd that you can’t even take real drugs? That’s just embarrassing. Also, you’re stressing out about a terrible music video that you’re making for fun with your friends. You really need to get your priorities in line. At least Screech is noticeably absent from this clip.

Fresh Prince “Racial Profiling”: Okay, so I get that this clip is discussing racial profiling. I completely get that. But what is this dialogue? I’m so confused as to what the situation that occurred earlier in the episode was that this conversation needed to happen. I agree with Carlton, a car driving at 2mph would be pretty suspicious and understandably pulled over. But, I feel like I shouldn’t be agreeing with Carlton because apparently it must have been about race? I’m just so confused. Uncle Phil’s pretty pissed off, that’s all I have to say. He’s probably more pissed off about the fact that Carlton agreed with the cops, therefore proving that something went wrong with Carlton’s DNA and he actually IS the whitest man alive. Also, what is the ending of that? Why did Carlton keep speaking after Uncle Phil left the room? Why was he sitting there still? Is that how they ended the episode? Is no one going to explain this to me? Why did whoever made this compilation of clips end the video this way? I just do not understand anything anymore.

All right, so I was going to describe another long-ass set of clips (sorry for saying “long-ass”, that was embarrassing), but this post is really long, so I’ll discuss the other compilation in the next post. There’s even more 80’s goodness, and even more confusing situations occurring that I can’t comprehend since I’m watching ten second clips. This is the good life.

meet danny: america’s love child

23 Jan

Side note before reading: I’ve decided not to edit the posts depending on if some of the information will seem irrelevant to this post. I just don’t have the energy, and we all have imaginations that we can use to fill in the blanks.

Television in the 1980’s was all about the “very special episode”. For example, Gary Coleman’s young friend gets given alcohol and molested on “Diff’rent Strokes”, “Saved By The Bell” introduced us to that homeless chick and her dad that shaved in the bathroom at the mall to explain to viewers that homelessness was alive and well, and there was that time on “Full House” when Michelle’s fish died and it was supposed to be a big deal for some reason. Wikipedia actually has an entire page to describe the “very special episode”. The 80’s were all about that shit.

Most people looking at this page are probably wondering who the handsome devil decorating the background is. That, my friends, is little Danny, a character used once on the hit show “Mr. Belvedere” back in, you guessed it, the glorious 1980’s, in order to create a VERY special episode. He was only on the show once, but damn, did he leave a lasting impression. Now, I’ve never actually watched an episode of “Mr. Belvedere”. The reason is mainly because this episode involving Danny is the only one I’ve ever cared to see and it is absolutely nowhere to be found online. I don’t get why, but it’s depressing, and you’ll understand why it upsets me so much in mere moments, once I explain what the hell this episode is about. Or you could just watch the clip and figure it out, whatever. Either one works.

But yeah, so I’ve never watched an episode of “Mr. Belvedere”, but what I have learned from watching various YouTube clips of it is that it is weird as fuck. Practically every clip I saw had some weird dialogue either having to do with pedophilia, molestation, or bondage. That’s pretty weird considering this is a family show. Apparently “Mr. Belvedere” was really trying to cover every single possible topic of a “very special episode”. I hope this show won some awards.

Specifically, I hope the episode this clip is from won some awards. More importantly, I hope this clip itself won awards. Several, actually. I hope it won every award it was nominated for. That’s how much I love this clip.


So, everyone, meet Danny. He’s just a little kid, going to visit his friend. He looks the way he does, speaks the way he does, and he’s got AIDS, but other than that he’s doing pretty good. Yes, that sentence was just written. And I didn’t write it as some cruel joke or offensive statement, I’m literally quoting the scene. That weird little kid actually just said “well, I got AIDS, but other than that I’m doing pretty good”. What the fuck is that? Seriously, what is that? Who wrote that dialogue? Why did they write it? Why did no one stop them? I feel like that sentence should never be spoken.

Now, if that statement alone wasn’t mind-boggling enough, there’s so much more going on in the scene to dissect. First of all, look at that kid. Just take a good look. His glasses take up half of his face. I understand that the 80’s were a weird time, but that poor kid doesn’t stand a chance. Secondly, the way he speaks makes me really sad. I believe that the family name on the show is “Owens”, but if you listen to little Danny speak, it sounds like he is saying “Owns”, as in “Hi Mr. Owns, Mrs. Owns”. If it wasn’t bad enough that kid has those glasses, he has to also not know how to speak. Then add AIDS to it and I just don’t even know what to make of what’s going on. While he’s saying the line, it is also apparent that Danny is in fact cross-eyed. This poor kid can in no way catch a break. I don’t know what the writers had against him, but he must have done something really wrong to them.

What makes this scene so awkward though is not Danny himself, but the reaction of the parents and the audience after Danny says he has AIDS (but other than that, he’s doing pretty good). Mrs. Owens looks pretty disturbed. She kind of looks like if you’re at a dinner party and someone asks how the meat is and she thinks it’s a little dry. She’s uncomfortable fully saying it, but you can tell she feels that way. Mr. Owens looks like he smelled something bad and he wants to ignore it immediately, or that he is severely disappointed in one of his children after learning they drank after the big dance (“Full House” did a great job with that storyline). I have no idea who that girl in the background is, but she isn’t helping out the situation. But then there’s the audience. You can tell the audience has no idea how to react. There’s some laughter, but mostly, even though I’m watching this scene probably 30 years later and on a laptop, you can tell that everyone in that studio audience is uncomfortable. This would have been an awesome time for the bigwigs at “Mr. Belvedere” to use a laugh track rather than a real audience, but I guess they were going for authenticity. They wanted to make everyone uncomfortable. That’s what the “very special episode” is all about.

So yeah, this clip exists. This actually happened on a television show. I won’t lie, I think this is my favorite clip to ever exist on YouTube. I wrote this entire post without watching the video once because it is forever burned into my memory. I could watch it over and over without stopping and still be amused. I just love little Danny that much.

Oh, and for anyone who was wondering, I know how Danny got AIDS. Trust me, I looked up the information on this episode in my failed attempt to watch the full thing. Apparently, Danny was playing Abraham Lincoln in the President’s Day play. Suddenly, Danny stopped coming to school and they needed someone else to play Abraham Lincoln. It is soon discovered that Danny became infected with AIDS through a blood transfusion. I realize that I wrote that whole synopsis out before actually explaining how Danny got AIDS, and I’m glad I did. For some reason, I really love the idea that the episode revolved around the President’s Day play, and that Danny had a lead role. I think that makes his plight even more devastating.

Also, please note that I’m not trying to downplay AIDS. I’m just genuinely so confused by this clip and storyline that I endlessly need to discuss and share it with people. Everything about it baffles me, and I think that’s why I love it so much.

As an added bonus, here’s a preview from another “very special episode” of “Mr. Belvedere” followed by an extremely inappropriate ad for another t.v. show right after it. “Mr. Belvedere” and the 80’s really knew what they were doing in our society.

blast from the past

23 Jan

So, this previous summer, my dear brother Brian decided to buy a website domain and asked if I would post some blog entries for him about random pop culture shit that popped into my head. I wrote five entries in total for him (one of which did not make it to his website), before we both kind of forgot about the website and carried on with our lives. So, I told Brian that I was interested in writing for his website again because I needed to get my creative juices flowing. He told me he would find the password for the website again and get things up and running.

Well, Brian and I worked on a voiceover special for Halloween which he posted to his website. I went to check the website to give it a listen, and it turns out, he deleted my entire page off of his site. As one could assume, this is annoying as fuck. Yes, I have the documents saved on my computer (new computer, actually. Files transferred over like a boss), but unfortunately, they didn’t save exactly as they had appeared on my blog there due to the formatting differences and the fact that I didn’t post the links I was referencing on the actual word documents (I’m stupid).

Long story short (not really, since I just told you the entire story in those first two paragraphs), I am going to repost those entries onto this blog, because I was kind of proud of them and I entertained myself with my extremely profound insight into the world of sitcoms and television of the 80’s and 90’s.

So, the next five posts are all going to be ones that I wrote a while ago. I might edit them to fit the context of this blog better, but really, who knows? It’ll be a last minute decision. I’m a procrastinator, it’s what we do. But, I figured it’s best to get that work back out there on the internet for no one to read again. Enjoy!

shantay, you stay

22 Jan

I usually talk about how much I hate or dislike things, so it’s a real treat and rare occurrence when I announce how much I genuinely love and appreciate something. Back in 2010 when I was in London, my flatmate Steph (wutup pheebz?!) and I had a Tuesday night tradition: go for some bottles of wine with some friends at The Shakespeare, then come back to our flat and stalk relative strangers on Facebook while on our own laptops on separate sides of the couch in silence. Sometimes, we wouldn’t even be on the same couch, but just sitting in the same room. Always in silence. No speaking allowed. Only maybe Facebook chatting if we had to send one another a link. Why speak when you can just send something virtually? It was really a tradition we came to know and love, I honestly do miss it to this day. Most of the time we would have found some food in the kitchen to snack on while we sat in silence, but mostly, we just ignored one another for a while. However, there was another factor that was incorporated into this tradition that cannot go unnoticed and is the central topic of this post: we had “RuPaul’s Drag Race” playing in the background whenever we did this. One of the stations we received at our flat played season two of “Drag Race” every Tuesday night at the time we got home from The Shakespeare, and we would always put it on, but never pay attention. What made it better is that while we had it on, we always questioned why we were watching it, but neither of us did anything to change that. This happened every week like clockwork, and it was a beautiful bonding experience for Steph and I.

Well, last year while watching “The Soup”, Joel McHale commented on a clip from “Drag Race”, which reminded me that the show existed. The clip was extremely campy, dramatic, and ridiculous, and while Joel McHale was clearly insulting it, I thought it was hilarious. Luckily for me, Vh1 (still waiting for your call to comment on shit, Vh1!!!!!) was playing a “Drag Race” marathon one night when I was at a friend’s house drinking, and the episode that we turned on happened to be the one that contained the clip from “The Soup”. The episode was ridiculous in and of itself, as one of the contestants, Willam (who is insanely funny and has a better body than me and half of the women I know), threw up off of the stage during the big judging ceremony, then the vomiting wasn’t addressed, and then after the “lip synch for your life” was performed by two other contestants, Willam was randomly called up and kicked off of the show for violating the rules. Naturally, Lauren and I thought that it was because he threw up, but the episode never went into explaining what the fuck happened, so we were left confused and amazed. And it hit me right then: I was hooked. There was no turning back after this. I watched all of the episodes that had aired so far in the fourth season on my laptop the next day that I didn’t have classes, and I was actively involved in the season finale, even sending in my vote over twitter (I voted for Chad Michaels, who is flawless). People were confused by my love for the show, but I didn’t know how to explain it. I was just obsessed (and still am).

I eventually realized the reason why I became so infatuated with the show: I love drag queens. Everything about them amazes me. They know how to apply makeup better than I do, they know how to dress their bodies better than I do, they know how to own their sexuality and love themselves, which is more than I can say for myself. Drag queens just have their own lexicon and dialogue that does not work when anyone else says what they say. They are hysterical, know exactly what to say to snap back at another queen or answer one of Ru’s suggestive questions. Basically, anything a drag queen says is what I wish I could say, but I’d look like a complete judgmental asshole doing so (I already look like a judgmental asshole, so I don’t need anymore help in that department). I came to love RuPaul, who I had really only known from the song “Cover Girl” and as the guidance counselor in “The Brady Bunch Movie”. Pretty much, I wish I was a drag queen, but I unfortunately was biologically born a woman, not a gay man. I have thought for a while that I was a gay man in another life, but I’m starting to think that I was actually a drag queen previously. I wish I was one now. Maybe my mom would get off of my back about not having a career path.

Over this summer, I watched the first three seasons of the show, came to know all of the queens, separated which ones I love, which ones I hate, and which ones I just don’t care about. I immersed myself in everything “Drag Race” and I have no regrets doing it. I’ve gotten my brother Brendan into the show, discovered that some of my friends love it, and even went to see one of the queens, Chad Michaels (who as I said before is FLAWLESS) at a club appearance a few weeks ago. I wish I could surround myself with drag queens. They seem to be the only other people on my level of bitchy who would not fault me for it. In fact, they would encourage it. That’s all I want in life. One of my top qualifications when looking for friends is that they’re judgmental (other qualities are that they drink and that they hate everything, but I guess I can overlook not fitting all qualifications if you have two of the three), and I feel like all of my favorite queens from “Drag Race” fit this bill. If karma is real, then I have to assume that I am royally fucked for what a mean-spirited and rude person I am, but watching episodes of “Drag Race” make me feel better about myself, knowing that there are others like me out there.

So, this is my open call for new friends. Drag queens. Any shape or size, I do not care. Just come hang out with me, drink cocktails with me, and teach me how to apply my makeup because I want to look better when we go out to gay bars. If you could pass me off as a drag queen, that would also be a plus. All of you drag queens whom I love, you are all the sisters I’ve always wanted but never had. It’s never too late to make new friends. Come find me now and save me from myself.

MTV’s Different Programming Over the Years…But Is It Making a Difference?

18 Apr

MTV truly was a revolution when it started; no other stations at the time were offering music videos around the clock like it was. However, the station has turned into one that provides programs of self-indulgence, excess, and irresponsibility. It is teaching middle and high schoolers that you don’t need to try hard to become famous; talent seems to be dwindling if we judge by what we’re watching on MTV. We know all about the cast of “Jersey Shore” and “Teen Mom”, but what have they really done other than be on television, acting as themselves? They are not positive role models, and MTV is not touching upon real issues that we are facing in our society. We should be teaching our youth how to save money and why getting an education and pursuing a career is important. Instead, we’re showing them programs that include clips of shows where people get injured and make fools of themselves. And according to MTV, that is something to be admired in our culture.

However, the revolution that is MTV and its influence on our culture is undeniable. It made strides in all new ways that other stations couldn’t begin to offer. Even when MTV took a step away from constant music to instead start showing other types of television shows, it was still making waves with its programming. “The Real World” essentially began the current reality television craze, and I really like to think it had noble intentions when the show first began. The first season was all about bringing different types of people from all over the country, in an attempt to get these different personalities to get to know a world outside of their own. Now, the show is all about gaining and keeping ratings, focusing on throwing a bunch of alcoholic 20-somethings into an insanely furnished house, hoping that multiple people will hook up with one another. If MTV is actually trying to “keep up with needs of the changing audience“, they’re telling us that we’re now not looking to watch tv with much substance behind it. “True Life” is another program whose de-evolution, I’d say, reminds me of “The Real World”‘s over time. “True Life” really has had some amazing episodes that deal with important issues, such as those of drug abuse, morbid obesity, Tourette’s Syndrome, and OCD. However, the show has a problem of adding in episodes that we would consider more “fluff”, such as “I’m a High School Freshman”, “I’m a Textaholic” and “I Have Embarrassing Parents” (which is actually a two part episode). However, the show has done far better than “The Real World” with staying socially relevant. Some of the most recent episodes include “I’m Occupying Wall Street” and “I Have Diabetes”, which are both important issues. This gives me some hope that MTV really is trying to keep their reality programming more on the realistic side.

But really, I don’t have that much hope…

Yeah, since this is from “True Life”, there’s really not much hope.

MTV seems to have gone through more of a reboot recently, starting with the emergence of the juggernaut that is “Jersey Shore”. That show is painfully easy to pick on and make an example of. You’d probably think that means I’ll skip over it, since it is such an easy target, but really, I’m saving it for its own special, private post (look forward to that!). I’m instead going to focus on the shows that were popular right before the rise of the shore. More specifically, “Laguna Beach”, “The Hills”, “Cribs” (and from that “Teen Cribs”, which is essentially just teenagers showing off what their parents have bought them…I’m not 100% sure why someone thought it was necessary to make a tv show out of this), “Pimp My Ride”, and of course, “My Super Sweet Sixteen”. All of these shows invite viewers into the excessive lifestyles of not only celebrities, but also those who just happened to grow up in affluential neighborhoods with wealthy parents. “Pimp My Ride” might be the only exception to this generalization, since the show was about crappy cars getting made over, but really, the make-overs were a tad over the top…

Really, only a little bit over the top…it hardly looks any different than the original car, trust me.

The show that really takes the cake from all of these programs would have to be “My Super Sweet Sixteen“. The show SCREAMS excessive spending and spoiled teenagers. Literally, the teenagers are always screaming that their parents weren’t buying them enough for their sweet sixteen, which is obviously the most important event of their entire life. It’s really all downhill after that point. The show was essentially encouraging teenagers to feel entitled, as if they deserve all of the items that their parents were shelling out so much money for. On top of this, the show was giving teens the wrong idea of how parents can spend money. “Super Sweet” would have you thinking that all parents are limitless ATMs, just waiting to hand you your every desire. The only good that the show does is bring together spoiled teens of all races, genders, and sexualities, to truly show that greed does not discriminate.

Necessary entrance.

Necessary tears.

Necessary tv show.

After the reign of “My Super Sweet Sixteen”, MTV has taken a step back and realized that not all that glitters is necessarily viewings gold. Our current generation is sick of this excessive spending and flaunting of wealth – we are Generation Debt and have actual money issues to worry about. So, now, programming has changed more from these previous “reality” shows to more scripted shows and shows that are “reality” but focused on those of a lower class (aka “Teen Mom”, which, have no fear, will also be getting its own post). However, in this programming, we still see no mention of how MTV is addressing, or even thinking about addressing, Generation Debt. Sure, we are no longer having lavish lifestyles shoved down our throats (on MTV, that is. Bravo is a whole other problem), but are we learning anything? I’m not saying it’s MTV’s job to teach its audience a “life lesson” or anything, but for a station with such an impressionable and wide-reaching audience, it could be doing a hell of a lot more to make a difference.

Who says MTV isn’t “music television” anymore? That’s all they blog about

10 Apr

On my quest to observe and study other other blogs, I decided to begin my search by looking up blogs created by and pertaining to MTV. I found three blogs from the MTV website, but also two just about shows that MTV airs or “issues” that MTV would touch upon. These “issues” were not so much issues that would pertain to viewers themselves, but more celebrity-related “news stories”.

Something I found very interesting was the way that MTV.com divides up its stories that are blogged about. I looked at three separate pages, one entitled “Newsroom”, one called “Buzzworthy” and the third “Remote Control”. While “Remote Control” is clearly about MTV television shows (you could guess that from the title of the blog), the other two titles are more misleading and confusing than one would think. “Buzzworthy” is the less confusing and misleading of the two; it is all about the most recent MTV gossip, aka information about musicians and their new cds and singles and whatnot. There are actually three posts about Justin Bieber on the first page alone. Apparently, there is that much important new information about him that needs to be shared immediately.

I prefer baby Bieber over slightly-grown up Bieber.

Now, the confusion sets in. You would think that “Newsroom” would be about actual news: world issues, issues pertaining to the youth that watch MTV, information other than news about Britney Spears’ unreleased music. Oh wait, sorry, is that third suggestion not actually considered news? One would think, but the latter of that statement is exactly what “Newsroom” is about. The first article I encountered was about Britney’s unreleased music. The next entry was about Katy Perry’s new cd. What I do not understand is how MTV.com differentiates between what is “Buzzworthy” and what is from the “Newsroom”. Both are essentially about what musicians are doing recently, and nothing that would actually be considered “news”.

Britney will always be relevant.

Now, back to the “Remote Control” blog. After reading through several entries, I came to the realization that it is in fact the most insightful of the three MTV blogs. While it does indeed discuss MTV television shows, it also discusses what the “actors” or participants in those shows are doing. There is an entry about social activist Dan Savage traveling across America to tell teenagers to “embrace their inner awkwardness”. There is an entry that discusses “Jersey Shore” star Vinny Guadagnino’s new book about his struggle with anxiety and desire to live in the moment. All of this gives me hope for this “new” MTV, that is trying to be more socially conscious. However, this area of the blog is also filled with complete fluff information, such as a behind the scenes look at the show “Fantasy Factory”, which is mostly just the crew messing around, and a picture of “Jersey Shore”‘s Jenni “JWoww” Farley’s dog, that has recently been dyed purple/blue (for reasons completely unknown to me).

Can anyone explain why this happened or why it is vital that I know about it?

This search through MTV and MTV related blogs just brought me back to the conclusion I already had figured out when first doing research for this blog: MTV walks away from important social issues in favor of telling the audience about celebrities and their own shows. MTV is reaching such a widespread age group and audience and I feel that they have much more of an obligation than they realize to talk about real issues that America’s youth are facing today. Nothing in these blogs I read touched upon Generation Debt; it is being virtually ignored by MTV’s programming and blogging. So for a station that is so devoted to its audience and what the audience wants to watch, shouldn’t they be doing more to inform that audience of what is happening around them?