Saturday, May 02, 2009

Best of the Week vol. XIX

Quote of the Week: Devon, why are you letting Sam Kinison and an Indian lesbian ruin your wedding? (Woody Woodcomb, Chuck)

Song of the Week: Mr. Roboto – Styx (as performed by Jeffster, Chuck)

Big News of the Week: ABC coming to Hulu: And along with ABC is the Disney family including ABC Family, Disney Channel, SOAPnet, classic ABC series, and titles from The Walt Disney Studio. Conspicuously absent for the Disney umbrella is any ESPN programs which means no Pardon the Interruption. Hopefully that gets remedied because I would love to hear another uncomfortable new media pitch from Tony Kornheiser while Michael Wilbon grumbles about how he will refuse to use it. Unless I am blind I did not see exactly when the Disney family will be added to Hulu in the press release. When it does I will have to remember to log off whenever I have a Wizards of Waverly Place marathon so it doesn’t show up as viewed on my profile.

Gratuitous Token Hot Chick Picture of the Week:

Yvonne Strahovski after getting caught in the sprinklers

Coalition Links of the Week:
With the Upfronts fast approaching, Buzz took a spin through some of the networks' most promising pilots. (BuzzSugar)

Vance gives his 2 cents on Lost, Survivor, 90210, Gossip Girl, American Idol and a few other shows. (Tapeworthy)

So we've got a question about Jonathan Rhys Meyers from The Tudors. Is he creepy, hot or just creepy hot? Vote in our survey! (TiFaux)

This week, the TV Addict discussed why Moonlight failed with Criminal Minds guest star Alex O'Loughlin. (The TV Addict)

Matt just caught up on the first two seasons of Californication. Bring on season three already, Showtime! (TV Fanatic)

Kate was delighted to hear that Chuck, Ed Westwick...will guest star on Californication. (TV Filter)

Free Download of the Week: Four Winds – The Killers (Kanye University): I am not entirely sure if this is on the up and up, but Kanye West routinely post music from him and artists from his label. Then occasionally he will post others like thyis The Killers cover of a Bright Eyes song. Because Kanye West is where I go for the latest in indie rock music advice.

Deal of the Week: DVD for Mom: As Low as $6.49 (Clueless, Elizabethtown, Mean Girls)

Video of the Week: I am not entirely sure about marketing campaigns that insult their potential customers, but hey, the latest Hulu spot stars Denis Leary. So there’s that.

The Leary Mission

Next Week Pick of the Week: Lost, Wednesday at 9:00 on ABC: Last week on Lost set into motion of what could be an explosive final three episodes of the season. Literally considering Faraday wants to take the buried bomb and blow up the Dharma station. Will they succeed? Considering the two-hour season finale is called The Incident, something better. Although why didn’t Kate or Jack bother to ask Faraday what exactly would happen to them if they did blow up the station, keeping Desmond from crashing the plane? That would have been my number one question.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Everyone Gather 'round Now Sing Him a Song

In a story I broke yesterday, the songs of Ben Folds sounds pretty good sans any musical instruments (see: If There Is a God He Is Laughing at Us and Our Football Team). But still nothing beats him when he is on his piano pounding away and the pinnacle was back during the Ben Folds Five era when they released Whatever and Ever Amen. That album is this month’s Scooter Hall of Fame induction.

When most people think of piano players they think of the Piano Man at the local lounge, but Folds isn’t one to stay seated and instead takes the Jerry Lee Lewis root to the instrument and goes even further sometimes making The Killer seem like Alicia Keys in comparison. Just take a listen to first track to hear that with the fuzzed out and frantic One Angry Dwarf and 200 Solemn Faces. But Ben saves his angriest tirade for an-ex girlfriend A Song for the Dumped which remains to this days the greatest Kiss Off song ever in the history of music.

Even when Folds isn’t raging against anyone, there is a melody to these songs without getting to smaltzy (except for Brick, but the heavy handed topic adds much weight to the song). The band goes down to New Orleans for the jazzy Steven’s Last Night in Town which sounds like it was recorded in the French Quarter. And after hearing the song, I kind of want to be Kate also. One downside to the demise of the Five is his solo work lacks the detailed harmonies that can on songs like Fair or The Battle of Who Cares Less.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

If There Is a God He Is Laughing at Us and Our Football Team

Ben Folds Presents: University a Capella

When Al Gore invented the interwebs, he must have had YouTube in mind because there is no greater accessory to the World Wide Web because you can basically watch any video ever created there. Of course the downside to YouTube is you can basically watch any video ever created including an absurd amount of videos of crappy singers destroying songs. One of the few variations of those singers that doesn’t suck are the numerous a capella groups that rework songs without any instruments but their mouths.

One of the all-time greats was UC Berkley’s DeCadence who broke out Dr. Dre’s seminal (Expletive Delete) Ain’t (Expletive Deleted) in the vein of Ben Fold’s cover (see below, naturally not all that safe for due to the song title). Now this may or may not been the catalyst for Ben Folds to tour the county to get a capella groups to rerecord his songs but it is a pretty novel idea that resulted in Ben Folds Presents: University a Capella! Sadly (Expletive Delete) Ain’t (Expletive Deleted) didn’t make the cut.

The songs that did are a mix of Folds’ solo work like Landed (The University of Chicago Buffoons) and Jesusland (UNC Chapel Hill Loreleis) as well as some Five classic like Brick (Leading Tones) and Selfless, Cold and Composed (The Sacramento State Jazz). Ben even pulls a Bobby McFarrin on two tracks, Boxer and Effington, performing all the parts sans a few kids on the latter song. Considering Folds sometimes frantic piano style is, it amazing some of the arrangement like Not the Same (The Spartones) though most groups stuck to his slower songs. I’m not sure how much replay value the album has as a whole, but if you have a large mp3 library, one of these songs coming up on random will certainly break up your playlist.

Song to Download - Effington

Ben Folds Present: University a Capella! gets a Terror Alert Level: High [ORANGE] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

I Want My Music Television vol. L

There have been a couple of videos that have caught my eye lately so I thought I’d give them some love since the death of Musical Television left a void for a forum on the art form. If you are interested in buying the video through iTunes, click the title link (where available). If you are interested in buying the song, look for a link in the analysis.

Know Your Enemy – Green Day

It looks like Green Day is continuing the paranoia theme of American Idiot with the follow up as this video has a strong 1984 feel to it. The song still sounds like a run of the mill Green Day song for better or worse.

Crimson and Clover – Prince

Not to be outdone by Kid Rock mashing up Sweet Home Alabama and Werewolf of London, Prince combines Tommy James and The Troggs but in a psychedelic way. As a bonus: no Kid Rock.

People C’mon – Delta Spirit

Me thinks the members of Delta Spirit have watch one too many episodes of Lost with all their flash forwards and flash backs and nonsensical storytelling. At least the song rock.

I’m on Fire – Sarah Bareilles

Over at they started a new feature called Hangin’ Out on E Street where contemporary artist like Pete Yorn (Your Own Worst Enemy), The Avett Brothers (Glory Days), and Mat Kearney (Atlantic City) tackle their favorite songs from the Boss sometime with commentary from the artist. My personal favorite is by Sara Barielles who covers my one favorite songs from Springsteen.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Oh, Chuck Me

Just when you thought Jeffster couldn’t get any better than breaking out with a little Toto, they unveil Mr. Robato… and Ellie and Awesome’s wedding… while Sarah brings knives to a gun fight… with Casey parachuting in… only to proceeding to make it rain… literally. And that was just the first half of the episode.

This season, after an absurdly long layoff thanks to the writer’s strike, saw Chuck do anything possible to get the Intercet out of his head so he could live a normal life, and with any luck, get the girl in the end. All sins led to Orion who created the Intercet and just happened to go AWOL right around the time Chuck’s dad walked out on the family without making pancake and not surpisingly (to me anyway) they were one in the same with Scott Bakula.

Yvonne Strahovski after a shower

But the place to be this season was at the Buy More where we got a Jeffster concert, the two members of which got the best lines not uttered by Casey. Then there were their antics from confusing Casey and Sarah with each other while breaking into the Buy More to steal Chuck’s secret computer, manning up with Captain Awesome at Christmas, macking on Brooklyn Decker, Awesome’s bachelor party, and some serious Missile Command skills.

Vvonne Strahovski in 3-D

Jeff wasn’t the only one that got some back story this season on Sarah, going back to her ten year reunion, which Casey got to spin records by Hanson and Chumbawamba, and we got to meet her dad, Bill Lumbergh. M’kay. We even got to see another side of Casey as he took on his former sensei. And we finally got to meet the infamous Jill that dumped Chuck for Bryce Larkin who in turn ended up being Fulcram.

Yvonne Strahovsk as a Buy More nerd

Larkin had a knack at showing up at the most inopportune times and did so again in the finale as he was primed to take Sarah away from Chuck on the new Intercet project. It was just that Sarah had different ideas. All plans were squashed when papa Bartowski flashed (you didn’t think he wouldn’t try out the Intercet on himself did you) when a dead man escorted Larkin to the new Intercet, thus introducing us to a third entity (something about a Ring) after it besides Fulcram and the US Government.

Yvonne Strahovski in her tighty whities

Oh, and the updated Intercet has uploading capability where Chuck can learn fighting skills. Then fade to the “To Be Continued…” card. Hopefully that turns out to be true.

Chuck 2.x gets a Terror Alert Level: High [ORANGE] on my Terror Alert Scale.

You can steam full episodes over at You can also download both seasons of Chuck on iTunes.

Monday, April 27, 2009

I Am a Makeup Lady Except the Makeup Is for Your Head

Head Case

We all know most of Hollywood have major mental problems so Head Case seems like a natural show. If you never have heard of Head Case it is probably because it is on Starz. The show features Alexandra Wentworth (In Living Color) as a psychologist to the stars that features actual celebrities, and legitimate ones too, not the kind ABC and VH1 trot out for their unwatchable reality shows.

Being semi-scripted, most episodes hinge on how well the stars can think on their feet, and while some can (Andy Dick, Jonathan Silverman) others fall flat (Good Charlotte’s Joel Madden). And there is a special category for Greg Grumberg that makes me happy I stopped watching Heroes because I never want to see him in anything again after this. And I thought his super-hearing face was disturbing.

The show isn’t all about the celebrities as we also follow Wentworth outside her practice to show just how she is the last person to give anyone advise as she has bad relationships with her family and boyfriend (Ron Benedict, Threshold). But the scene stealer is Steve Landesberg (Forgetting Sarah Marshall) whom Wentworth shares an office with despite not actually having any patients so he tries to land some of her clients and psychoanalyze the repair guy while he works.

One big problem with the DVD packaging is that is out of order. There is two hours worth of shorts that are on the second disk that actually aired before what the set calls the first season which is on the first disk. If you watch the first disk first like I did, there is a sense that you are missing something while watching the first episode. So if you check out the first season of Head Case on DVD, be sure to pop in the second disk first to watch it the way the show aired chronologically. The second disk also features a featurette and a blooper reel.

The second season of Head Case is airing Fridays at 10:00 on Starz. You can also download the first season of Head Case on iTunes.

Head Case gets a Terror Alert Level: Elevated [YELLOW] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

57 Channels and Only This Is On vol. LXXVII

Chuck: Wow, that could have made for one awesome series finale. But my sources tell me all that changes in the actual season finale tomorrow. Me thinks Chuck will get the Intercet back in his head. And if I am lucky Morgan will actually go to Hawaii and stays there with Harry Tang. You can stream current episodes over at You can also download Chuck on iTunes.

Greek: Very few things are worse than when the chick you like asks you if you can hook her up with one of your friends. There is very few ways that can end well. You can stream current episodes over at You can also download Greek on iTunes.

Rescue Me: The sight gag of the all black bar with no lights on may be the funniest sight gag (or lack thereof) of the year. You can stream current episodes over at Hulu.

Rescue Me on iTunes

Lost: I thought the plan they made last year was to give us uninterrupted runs for the remaining seasons and that was the second non-new Lost this season. Granted this special was helpful in putting some things in chronological order but couldn’t they have saved it for before the two hour finale like they usually do? You can stream current episodes over at

Lost on iTunes

Real World/Road Rules Challenge: The Duel II: I knew she wasn’t going to last long, but it was sad to see Brooke go home so early. I like my girls a little mentally unstable and she certainly fits that bill but she didn’t stick around to have one of her moments. You can also download The Duel II on iTunes.

Survivor: This was basically the tale of three episodes. The first part played like a Lifetime movie with Sierra pleading for her life and even squeezed out some tears. Even the background music sounded like something out of a Lifetime movie. Then we had the lamest challenge ever in the history of Survivor with the shuffle board. Then came one of the greatest blindsides in Survivor history. What was great was Sierra looked actually more surprised than Tyson did. Priceless. You can stream current episodes over at Innertube.

Survivor on iTunes

My Name Is Earl: It is episodes like this that makes me wonder why the show ever does non-list with the escalation list items that Earl had to keep adding to for the preacher. I almost coughed up a kidney when his wife stood up in church and admitted to sleeping with Earl. You can stream current episodes over at You can also download My Name Is Earl on iTunes.