Thursday, November 29, 2007

TV movies; like normal TV only longer

I’ve seen two movies based on television shows recently. Both were quite good, though this came as no surprise since the shows themselves are first rate.

The first was Battlestar Galactica: Razor. Now before any of you naysayers speak up, I’m not listening to any of your lip. Yes, Dwight loves Battlestar, thus assuring that it is a nerdy show. It may be nerdy, but it is awesome. I was just telling my roommate today that I’m looking forward to Battlestar’s upcoming season premiere more than that of Lost. Both are fine shows, but Battlestar is very often a more satisfying experience. The nerdiest among you have debated the value of Heroes versus Lost and what you may miss is that Battlestar takes the best elements of the two serial drama powerhouses, and adds better acting, cooler effects and an epic storyline. It’s a fantastic show, as anyone who has watched an episode and a half will tell you.

Razor wasn’t fantastic, but it was good. Strangely enough the movie takes place in three different time periods, none of which are in between the most reason season and the upcoming premiere. It’s basically three different sets of flashbacks, but which all tie together and provide a couple new bits of information for the upcoming season. The concept didn’t exactly enthrall me, but I trust the writers of this show to do whatever they please. And it worked well. The biggest impact the movie had was to make me excited for the new season. And perhaps this was the major point of it all. If only the new season didn’t correspond with my time studying for the board exams.

The second movie was the new Futurama movie. For those of you that are unfamiliar, this is another cult following show. It’s from the writers of The Simpsons, but was never terribly successful. But the DVDs of the show sold extremely well and it has been one of the centerpieces of Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim programming, and like Family Guy before it, it has been resurrected. In another unusual marketing movie, 4 movies are being made, which will be cut up into 16 episodes which will be shown on Comedy Central next year. It’s strange, but fans of the show are happy to see it in any form they can.

This movie is called Bender’s Big Score, and the plot is too complex to go into and fairly inconsequential. What is consequential is that it was very entertaining. Futurama is fairly unique in that it has funny characters spouting funny dialogue while acting out funny storylines, all the while with funny visual gags in the background. It doesn’t have as many laugh-out-loud spots as Family Guy or a classic Simpsons episode (though far more than current episodes), but it is constantly amusing. Furthermore the characters are much more relatable and paradoxically human (seeing as most of them are mutants, aliens, robots etc) than those in other animated shows. So not only is it uniquely funny, but the storylines, silly as they may be, seem more important to the viewer. I thought these strengths were shown very clearly in the movie. But I’m not sure if a new viewer will enjoy it much. There are constant references back to previous episodes throughout the movie. Almost none of them are essential to the plot, but I think the movie would seem very random to a new viewer. But for me, it was simultaneously a great bit of nostalgia and new entertainment. I can’t wait until the next one.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


Some lessons from Thanksgiving weekend

1. I have never, nor is it likely that I ever shall use my vacation effectively. My goal: study for 3 hours a day. That didn’t happen. It was a slackerly goal, and still didn’t happen. Wanting to get stuff done just spoils the vacation.
2. I don’t really like Thanksgiving. What is the main component of the holiday? Eating. I enjoy eating, but I don’t want a holiday for it. I don’t really have any family traditions, so there’s nothing else to do. I don’t like football, so the main activities of the day are also not enjoyable. All in all, it’s just not a good holiday for me. I may not celebrate it in the future.
3. It’s always cold on Thanksgiving. It was 70 degrees on Wednesday. It was 30 on Thursday. This wasn’t a problem, except I had to run a football game. I stayed by the hot chocolate the whole morning.
4. People don’t like sweet potatoes. I made a bunch, and brought about 80 % of them home. This was great, because I like them and got to eat them for the next couple days.
5. Black Friday, when experienced in moderation, is both easy and unproductive. I went to four stores, which weren’t the ones having huge sales. I went at 10, which is after the crazy sales started, but before the masses lazier than I got to the store. The really good stuff was already gone. But I didn’t have any lines and got some reasonably good deals. My experience didn’t increase or decrease my chances of shopping on this dreaded day next year.
6. Spamalot is nearly as funny on repeat viewings. I’m not a huge theater person, and have never seen a play more than once. But when offered a free ticket to the show which is in Columbus for the week, I took it. I think the presentation on Broadway was better (as you’d expect) but this was still a very enjoyable experience. I think due to the variability of a live performance, repeat viewings of plays hold up better than watching films over and over. But it’s not nearly as cost effective.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Like the Conchords

Our tribute to those delightful Kiwis.

Monday, November 05, 2007


I compulsively delete my spam every time I open my email, which is roughly twenty times a day. So as an effort to liberate myself from my unhealthy tendencies I refrained from deleting any spam for the last week. This was fairly convenient since it was test week and this probably saved me at least four minutes over the course of the week. In any case, my grand total came to: 139. Isn't that crazy? I'd get rid of the email account, but it's engraved on the back of my iPod, so I'm really stuck with it until B-Debbie dies.