Archive for: March, 2010

Catching Fire

Catching Fire

Catching Fire is the sequel to Suzanne Collins’s “The Hunger Games”.

Last time Katniss Everdeen had to fight in The Hunger Games she pimped the system by playing the old ‘hey don’t make me kill my childhood friend Peeta – I’m pretty sure I love him’ card.

President Snow is furious because only one person is allowed to win his crazy death-match. He shows up to menace Katniss in her house and his breath smells like blood.

Well there’s your problem. If I had to pick a president for a future world, I’d go with the one that doesn’t smell like blood. Wonder how he got elected- probably stood far away from everyone. Big presidential banners everywhere: ELECT PRESIDENT SNOW I ASSURE YOU THAT BLOOD SMELL IS FROM SOMETHING ELSE.

Katniss and Peeta have to go back in the arena along with other previous winners of The Hunger Games, even though they were all promised houses and riches and to never have to fight again. They all get jumpsuits and dropped in the jungle and then Axl Rose is all like you know where you are you’re in the jungle baby you’re gonna die!

All the districts that have to give the President two kids every year for the worst episode of Double Dare ever filmed aren’t too happy about it and start to revolt. Even the guy in charge of building The Hunger Games is in on the revolution. He tries to tip Katniss off by showing her a secret watch with the mockingjay symbol of the uprising but she just says nice bird and walks off. It’s pretty tough for any character to get Katniss savvy to this whole rebellion thing- even her mentor Haymitch says ‘Hey when you’re in the arena this time don’t kill nobody. They are your secret friends.’

Cut to her in the Hunger Games arena, she’s basically waiting on the first opportunity to crack everyone’s skull with a rock. Even people who go out of their way to save her life get moved to the top of the “To Stab With A Serrated Blade” list.

Then they have to fight bad monkeys and flesh eating fog. I had an idea for a restaurant once where people pay to wait tables for monkeys. Anyone can train a monkey to wait tables but it takes a real visionary to charge people to bring steak and cigars to unruly chimps. The only thing the bad monkeys get served in Catching Fire is an arrow in their monkey faces.

Katniss can’t make up her mind about whether she really loves Peeta or her best friend Gale. Gale works in the mines and they used to hunt together illegally. Look- I’m sure if you’re a young girl it’s fun to break the rules with cute boys, but Katniss needs to let that relationship go. She barely even sees that dude anyway. It’s like carrying a torch for some guy you broke into an abandoned Dairy Queen with in 10th grade.

Peeta is clearly the best choice. They survived The Hunger Games together. Katniss is not only looking a gift horse in the mouth, she’s taking out his wisdom teeth and putting gold fronts in his grill.

If my government was trying to kill me with monkeys (your banana mash brandy, sir—will that be separate checks?) I wouldn’t spend much time wondering what boy to like.

¡Viva la Revolucion!

Interview with Paul Scheer

Interview conducted via email.

SM: You’re the last surviving human getting ready to board a ship leaving Earth. What brief message would you leave behind?
PS: “Watch Gossip Girl every Wednesday Night at 9PM on the CW…Shit is it on Wednesday Night? I don’t know, I think it is…I DVR it, so I can watch it whenever. Damn. I should I have researched that before I made this final announcement. Anyway people of Earth goodbye.”

SM: Come to think of it, how did you manage to be the last surviving human?
PS: I made a backdoor deal with the aliens. I gave them all gift cards to the Olive Garden. They are suckers for unlimited breadsticks.

SM: When was the last time you dressed up for Halloween, and as what?
PS: Yesterday. Unfortunately it wasn’t Halloween. I dressed up like a sexy kitten. Meow!

SM: What was your most recent good deed?
PS: I created and produced NIGHT OF 140 TWEETS
a celebrity TWEET-A-THON for ARCHITECTURE FOR HUMANITY which includes performances by Ben Stiller,  Weird Al Yankovic, Diablo Cody, Sarah Silverman, Ashton Kutcher, Demi Moore, The Cast of Always Sunny and 140 more performers all reading their favorite tweets. You can actually download it on amazon and itunes. All the proceeds go to charity and Amazon also carries a special edition DVD which has appearances by Kevin Smith, Olivia Munn, Chris Hardwick, Questlove and Andy Cohen from Bravo.
So yeah. I’m helping people . What the fuck are you doing?

SM: When was the last time you had to wear a suit?
PS: When I had to perform a eulogy for Chester the Cheetah, he died of Cheese Poisoning.

SM: Where do you like to go to sort out your thoughts?
PS: Taco Bell.

SM: When was the last time you risked your life?
PS: Cereal or the board game?

SM: As Ludacris once remarked, ‘What in the world is in that bag, what you got in that bag?’
PS: A Pen, Some Pocket Lint and a Zune.

SM: If a wizard shrunk you down to the size of a green bean for 24 hours, how would you spend your day?
PS: Trying to jump into people’s salads and when they tried to eat me, I’d yell “MURDERER!”

SM: What is something you’d like people to know about you?
PS: That if it came down to it, I’d enter an arm wrestling competition to win back my son’s respect and love just like Slyvester Stallone did in Over the Top.

Paul Scheer’s website

Ghosts of Girlfriends Past

Just what the world needs—a sexy Ebenezer Scrooge.

Matthew McConaughey’s character bones his way through an alternate dimension where there are no STDs, women think of McConaughey with slicked back hair as some kind of sex god, the brakemen have to tip their hats and the railroad bulls are blind there’s a lake of stew and of whiskey too you can paddle all around ’em in a big canoe in the Big Rock Candy Mountains.

Let me ask you this, GHOSTS. Why do you give a damn into whom or what this man has or will put his penis?  Not sure what you lady ghosts are getting out of this whole deal. Do lady ghosts get a bag of ghost money every time Matthew McConaughey falls in love?

Damn girl where did you get that ecto-dress? I haunted Matthew McConaughey and GOT PAID.

Seems like if you want to haunt a man about his sexual past you’d do it with a ghostly floating dick, not a beautiful lady. Ooooooh, I am the ghost of your dick, Matthew McConaughey. <chains rattle>

You know who’s the best Scrooge of all? Scrooge McDuck. Because even though he lives in a world of duck robots and golden helicopters, he keeps his head on straight. He might solve a mystery or rewrite history but no matter what he’s got his priorities in order and I admire him for that.

Can you imagine Ghosts of Girlfriends Past starring Scrooge McDuck? Oh Hilda Quackengoose! Debra Featherbill! Jennifer Garner! Sorry I slept with you and dumped you. What’s that?! You’ve got twenty ducklings to support and they’re all mine?

Just put it on my bill!

Gremlins 2

In Gremlins 2 a careless janitor sprays water all over Gizmo in an office building. Next thing you know, gremlins.

You got gremlins buying and selling stocks, gremlins flashing their nonexistent genitals, gremlins choking Leonard Maltin with a belt. There’s a lady gremlin who has sex with an executive. I don’t think I could make it work with that lady gremlin, though. Even if she was in a wedding dress. Especially if she was in a wedding dress, come to think of it. How did she even find a gremlin sized wedding dress? It would have to be specially tailored to fit her body.

I’m not saying anyone should throw Gizmo in a fire— but I do know that if evil versions of me came out of my skin whenever I got wet, people would think about not having me on this planet anymore, considering it’s 70% water.

One of the gremlins wears a sports coat, smokes a cigar and talks like a well-to-do yacht captain. He drank out of a lab beaker with a brain icon on it. Try again, scientists. That gremlin’s not smart- he’s rich. Now there’s a hit country song.

“You may think he’s clever/ with an IQ that’s healthy/ that Gremlin ain’t smart- he’s just wealthy”

Time to dust off that Grammy for “Best Gremlins 2 themed three lyric having country music song”. What?! Somebody else won?

Damn you Lady Gaga!

The Hurt Locker

Imagine my shock when I realized this movie was not about the contents of actor William Hurt’s high school locker. William Hurt is one of the finest audio-book narrators of our time. His reading of Stephen King’s ‘Hearts in Atlantis’ nearly moved me to tears in my office chair. Maybe that’s what Hurt Locker means, when you’ve been so captivated by a William Hurt performance of an audio-book that your very heart becomes locked in place, unable to beat for a moment.

Ranger Sergeant First Class William James loves defusing bombs so much he’d rather be feeling around under a rusty old car for bomb parts than hanging out with his family. How do I know this? He confesses his true feelings to a baby.

Can you blame the man? Babies very rarely require expertise in improvised explosives. Yeah I know. Their diapers. Improvised explosives. I get it!

James reminds me of the soldier in 28 Weeks Later who push starts a car and sacrifices himself in the nerve gas. Wow I’m adding spoilers for other movies now. I’ve might as well start going directly to theaters, stand next to the guy taking tickets and hand out brochures about the end of the movie and who dies.

James takes off his protective bomb suit so much when he’s defusing bombs he might as well just wear cargo shorts and a torn Myrtle Beach shirt out on missions. Or a summery halter top, Daisy Dukes and Old Navy flip flops.

And instead of being a dude he could be a sexy lady. And instead of defusing actual bombs she could defuse Jägerbombs.

Spring Break!

Up in the Air

George Clooney you old goat!

Clooney handsomes his way across America firing people left and right. Here’s a tip, struggling companies: maybe the reason you have to lay people off is because you hire ladykillers like Clooney to fly in an airplane from another state to do a basic company function. While you’re at it why don’t you buy Jude Law a train ticket to come clean the microwave in the break room?

Clooney’s character Ryan Bingham meets Alex, a traveling business lady just like him. They have sex on a pile of airline miles and make the room service guy watch.

Well they might as well have.

Bingham’s biggest fantasy is to get ten million airline miles so he gets to meet the King of Pilots. When it finally happens the King of Pilots leans in to Bingham and whispers:

hey come closer.
No closer.
Closer than that, I have a secret.
Ok I’ll tell you.
I’ve got pilot’s dick.

Well he might as well have said that.

Look for the sequel when Clooney’s character gets tired of firing people and goes to beauty school in ‘Up in your Hair’. The trilogy wraps up with a tale of Clooney’s trip to the second floor in ‘Up on the Stairs’.

Bingham also mentors Natalie, a stuffy young lady who wants to switch his company to firing people over the computer. Like a sexy robot-factory union organizer, no computer is taking his job so he takes her around the country to show her it’s better to ruin someone’s life in person.

The last time I was on an airplane my ears got stuffed up and wouldn’t pop even after I landed in New York, ate Mexican food and got drunk. I couldn’t keep my hand off my ear and I walked around cupping my ear going “aaahhhh…ahhhhh….it won’t pop!”

Interview with Paul F Tompkins

Interview conducted via email.

SM: Please describe your most recent brush with danger.
PFT: I thought I was allergic to peanuts! False alarm. Totally psychosomatic. Now I eat peanuts by the shellful.

SM: Are you a good dancer? Please describe your style.
PFT: My dancing is not, how you say, so good. I only dance at weddings and only if I am sufficiently drunk. My style could best be described as Drunk Wedding, which also describes my martial arts fighting technique.

SM: When was the last time you had a memorable night in an unfamiliar city?
PFT: Oh, I’d have to say August 18th, 1999. I wandered the streets with two dear friends, passing a flask of fine old whiskey between us, talking of our hopes, fears and dreams, talking, laughing and, yes, even crying until the sun came up. Oh, and the city was THE LOST CITY OF ATLANTIS.

SM: If society encouraged men to wear make-up, how would you do yourself up?
PFT: Probably just a little lipstick, nothing too bold. I don’t need any eye makeup becaus I already have beautiful long lashes.

SM: What’s the craziest thing that ever happened to you at the beach?
PFT: I suffered a complete nervous breakdown. Pretty crazy!

SM: What was the first thing you thought when you woke up this morning?
PFT: “AGAIN with this.”

SM: What’s in your pockets right now?
PFT: A portal to Narnia. I think it’s Narnia? It  looks all fantasy-y and whatever.

SM: Are you king of anything?
PFT: Well, I will be, if I could ever get this goddam SWORD out of this goddam STONE. Who even put this thing in here? Did they have to put it in there that deep? Thanks a bunch, guy (or girl, shouldn’t be sexist).

SM: When was the last time you took a gamble on something?
PFT: What time did you send this email?

SM: How would you recommend we recognize you in the afterlife?
PFT: Oh, you won’t see me there. I got a “to-haunt” list that’s longer than your arm. People are gonna be SORRY.

paulftompkins.com
Paul’s album Freak Wharf on Itunes



The Girl Who Leapt Through Time

This review has one spoiler.

Makoto Konno is a Japanese high school girl who gets killed by a train because her bike brakes failed. Except instead of waking up in Japanese heaven full of businessmen cats she wakes up back at home in the past. Turns out she can leap through time by literally running and jumping in the air.

Now she’s altering the fabric of time whenever she wants another hour of karaoke. She uses time travel to play matchmaker for her friend Kōsuke and ends up getting him and his new girlfriend killed by that same train. Also she goes back in time to stop that from happening, too.

I wish I could go back in time and go on a date with beautiful ladies of the past. Sorry present day girlfriend. Does it count as cheating if you date someone from another time? I like that apparently all it takes in my fantasy is a time machine. Any woman in any historical period is just dying to go out with me and listen to me talk about nerdy shit.

Hey I’m from the future let’s go on a date! How did you like Star Wars, Jane Austen? Would you like to see my hacked iPhone, Marilyn Monroe? Let’s play Xbox, Cleopatra!

Maybe I’ll just use the time machine to go back in time to alter television shows about going back in time.

BAM INTO THE QUANTUM LEAP WRITER’S ROOM

You’ve got to change the episode where Sam leaps into Elvis. IT SUCKS! More episodes where he fights the devil! You’re gonna get canceled and write a terrible series finale—it’s really confusing! Write a better one I’m from the future!!!

UPDATE: I had to get rid of the hacked iphone and buy an android phone. Sorry Marilyn Monroe I was going to [high pitched singing voice] excite your body with futuristic-Steve-Jobs-soul technology!

Fable II

This game was on sale for twenty bucks at Target. Twenty bucks! You can get paper towels, a jug of Hawaiian Punch and three frozen pizzas for that price.

My Fable 2 character started out all sexy and scruffy-shirtless, poet’s beard, sandy blond hair. Unfortunately for him, eating pies not only replenish health, they fatten your character up.

One thing leads to another, I find myself in a tight spot- I’m feeding that dude pie left and right. Soon he’s so fat I have to put a coat on him (a stylish coat, but a coat of shame nonetheless). Well, his long alt-rocker hair won’t work on his chubby face so I change his haircut to shaved and grow out his beard to cover his chin.

Suddenly I realize my Fable 2 character looks exactly like me, if I had a fabulous coat.

For a game that gave me “evil points” for overcharging people on the rent, Fable 2 didn’t seem to mind that I had three different families in as many cities like a secret polygamist businessman. If you’re a lady in a strange town, and I don’t have any families in that town, I’m going to get you pregnant and then high tail it out of there. Good riddance, women and babies! See you next time I want to buy a sword or new clothes in the town where I abandoned your ass.

I was on the way to bring some fancy furniture to this prostitute I married when the game froze up and went to a black screen. I reloaded it and the same thing happened. I got on the internet and guess what- a LOT of people had this same problem. And it’s UNFIXABLE. You have to delete your whole game and start over again. Something to do with a corrupt save file.

Now my prostitute wife will never get her luxury linens! Her powdered skin will never know the exotic thrill of laying on fancy sheets oh wait she’s a prostitute the last thing she wants to see is another bed.

Well, kiss my grits Fable 2! I can’t even get my money back. Can you imagine the headache of trying to explain corrupt save files to the customer service people at Target? You see the save file is broken….other people on internet forums….no switching the game won’t work….Oh I see, well I guess I’ll just go THROW THIS GAME IN A GOD DAMN RIVER and hope a magic fish gives me a wishing coin for it.

What’s that magic fish? You say I get three wishes? Hot damn! I guess magic river fish must use broken Xbox games as some kind of currency. What are you going to buy with it? Enchanted river porno, you say.

Huh. Wasn’t expecting that answer.

Doctor Who Season 3

This review contains spoilers.

You think Doctor Who gets hot wearing a long coat over his suit all the time? I hate wearing a coat unless it’s really cold. Ever wear a coat in a car that’s been sitting in the sun all day? Even though it’s cold outside, the car is really hot but you’ve made your coat decision and got your seat belt on, so now you just have to sweat while you drive around.

Doctor Who is so lonely he can’t help but pick up another strange woman on his travels in season three. Good thing he has an eye for heroic ladies. Hate to see the Doctor get graadlefaxrd on the planet Hyrule because a truck stop hooker sold him out for a pack of sonic cigarettes.

It took me three seasons to wonder this, but where do the Doctor’s companions sleep on his police box ship? Must get frustrating sleeping in the same room, but not the same bed, as someone you have sexual tension with. Doctor Who’s TARDIS is like the champagne room of time traveling ships.

Oh there’s champagne in the Champagne Room. But you don’t want champagne… you want sex. And there’s no sex in the TARDIS.

Martha Jones is the Doctor’s companion this season. She’s so hot even Shakespeare wants to get in her pants (not a euphemism, they actually meet Shakespeare). She’s black, so every time they travel to a year before 1980 everyone has to make some dick racist comment to her. She even suffers through a job as a maid in 1913 England when Doctor Who becomes a human to hide out from some aliens.  Oh hey I’m going to lay low for a while— mind scrubbing floors for a few months? I’ll be over here teaching school as a well respected professor. Lalalala…

Doctor Who’s worst enemy the Daleks try to make a comeback on the top of The Empire State building during the Great Depression. They want to make human-Dalek hybrids. Doctor Who stops their plan by transmitting his own DNA into the human Daleks through a bolt of lightning.

I know how you feel Doctor Who. The last time I “transmitted my DNA” it felt like a bolt of lightning, too.

Captain Jack Harkness from Torchwood hitches a ride on the Doctor’s ship by literally holding on to the sides of the police box as it hurtles through time and space. I don’t think this follows NASA protocol for space travel. Just because the man can’t die doesn’t mean he can hold on to a wooden box with his fingertips on a trip to the end of the universe. This isn’t a mechanical bull on dollar beer night, Captain Jack.

Right before Harkness peaces out he drops some knowledge on the Doctor that he is, in fact, The Face of Boe. The Face of Boe is an enormous wrinkled face as old as time itself. It lives in a glass vat. Doctor Who watches him die in the far-flung future. Captain Jack is immortal and has a splendid coat. Wow, this show is all about coats. I guess it wouldn’t be as popular if it was called Doctor Coats.

I guess Jack is immortal, but not too immortal. He lives forever, but not FOREVER. More like a lot of ever. Quite a bit of ever. But not forever.

The big bad this season is The Master, another time lord that The Face of Boe warned the Doctor about. The Master takes all the humans at the end of time and puts their heads in some miniature death stars with needles and lasers. And he steals the TARDIS and makes it into a “paradox machine” (aka a Doctor Who scriptwriter’s keyboard) that ensures that time doesn’t collapse on itself.

Oh yeah and he ages Doctor Who one hundred years, turning him into a wizened little gnomish creature and puts him in a cage. I like that even in the cage the little Doctor Who had on a miniature suit. Where did he get that suit?

Oh hello, I’ve just taken over the world and turned my arch nemesis Doctor Who into a wizened diminutive version of himself. But I need a tiny pinstriped suit for him.

Well of course I’ve tried Baby Gap!

My Effortless Brilliance

Spoilers below.

My Effortless Brilliance is about a fussy little man (Eric) and his adventure in the country trying to mend an old friendship. Eric’s “effortless brilliance” is his super ability to radiate gamma rays with little to no exertion on his part, submerging evil-doers in the blinding light of justice.

Just kidding—the title just refers to the fact that he’s a talented self-absorbed writer. I think.

Eric calls his friend Dylan and says “Hey why don’t you drive your ass over here and bring me some Indian food” (in so many words). Apparently he pulls this kind of shit all the time because Dylan brings him the food but then says “You’re a terrible friend”, leaving Eric literally holding the bag.

BAM TWO YEARS LATER

Dylan lives in the country now. A hot book groupie  flirts with Eric, but you never find out if he gets any sexy literate action. Eric wears a scarf and is still persnickety. He must realize how much he sucks, because he hauls his curly headed butt out to the middle of nowhere for a surprise visit to Dylan’s quaint little cabin.

Dylan has a weird intense friend now. Like the kind of wild eyed guy that just make you uneasy. My friend Mike says if you can see the whites above a person’s pupil all the time they can’t be trusted. This guy doesn’t really have that going on with his eyes, but he should. He rides around on a horse looking to shoot a cougar.

Dylan and his uptight country friend are standoffish to Eric until they get drunk. A story is told about Liv Tyler’s ass. Everybody goes out in the middle of the night to hunt that cougar.

I totally understand why Dylan wanted to get Eric out of his life- I’m kind of a pain in the ass to my friends, too. I’m also fastidious and it’s like pulling teeth getting me to drive. I don’t have any scarves though.

THE END