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Required reading: Jesse Williams’s powerful BET Awards speech

By on Jun 29, 2016 in Tinseltown | 0 comments

This blog has been long dormant, but some pop culture moments cannot be ignored — including the speech Grey’s Anatomy star Jesse Williams delivered as he accepted the Humanitarian Award at the 2016 BET Awards. Here’s the transcript in toto, thanks to TIME. Peace peace. Thank you, Debra. Thank you, BET. Thank you Nate Parker, Harry and Debbie Allen for participating in that. Before we get into it, I just want to say I brought my parents out tonight. I just want to thank them for being here, for teaching me to focus on comprehension over career, and that they make sure I learn what the schools were afraid to teach us. And also thank my amazing wife for changing my life. Now, this award – this is not for me. This is for the real organizers all over the country – the activists, the civil rights attorneys, the struggling parents, the families, the teachers, the students that are...

Completist destiny: Shows I’ve watched beginning to end

By on Jul 3, 2014 in Inner Monologues | 0 comments

Completist Destiny, as defined by Wikipedia, is the belief that a television addict such as myself is destined—nay, divinely ordained—to watch a series completely and completely chronologically. Fine, I admit: that might just be a dogma of my own creation. But I stick to it. (This is where you, in solidarity, shout, “Leave no episode behind!”) Of course, I have to compromise sometimes, like when networks boneheadedly air episodes out of order, or when I’m watching TV with someone who’s not as obsessive-compulsive devoted to the intended chronology as I am. Anyway, I was thinking today about the series I’ve watched in their entireties—i.e. series for which I’ve seen every episode made available. Here they all are, from the most prolific to the shortest-lived… and even the ones I’m not so proud I watched! The X-Files (205 episodes)...

TV’s Weirdest Family is in Kohler’s “Two Kids, One Toilet” Commercial

By on Apr 5, 2014 in Inanities | 0 comments

No offense to Kohler — a company whose products I genuinely respect — but its commercial entitled “Tresham” shows the strangest ostensibly-“cute” family dynamics on TV. It’s more a PSA for lockable bathroom doors than it is an ad for bathroom plumbing. Imagined logline: Two kids urinate simultaneously in a Kohler toilet while nude Mom enjoys a soak in a Kohler bathtub mere feet away. As the commercial starts, the two boys open the door just wide enough to scope out the situation and their mother inside, who is luxuriating in a bubble bath — perhaps contemplating the mystery of that odd latch mechanism on the door. (“There must be a way to ensure my privacy! Is there something else one should do to a bathroom door after closing it?”) And as the rugrats breach Mommy’s Spa Weeknight, the woman doesn’t even check to make sure her bobbly...

The Great TV Show Title Jumble

By on Sep 17, 2013 in Inanities | 0 comments

Today in Hypothetical Alternate Realities: What would happen if two totally different shows exchanged words in their titles? Behold. Drag Notice — HR representatives are replaced by drag queens, who then put delinquent employees on notice. “Gurl, you betta werk!” RuPaul’s Burn Race — RuPaul trades her loving “shade” for appallingly cruel barbs (punctuated, of course, by her trademark cackle). Pretty Little Anarchy — Four teenage fashionistas live to regret having overthrown the government of Rosewood. Sons of Liars — Four grown sons of formerly-teenage fashionistas form a motorcycle gang… and dish about small-town secrets over nonfat lattes. The Good Stars — An inventory of all the celebrities in Hollywood who haven’t been arrested for DUI, become a Scientologist, flashed their nether regions, or made anti-Semitic remarks. Dancing with the Wife —...

2013 Emmys: And the nominees are…

By on Jul 28, 2013 in Tinseltown | 0 comments

After poring over the 2013 Emmy nominations, I have a just a few observations, objections, musings, congratulations, speculations, and ramblings. American Horror Story has quickly become one of my all-time favorites, so I’m gratified that Emmy voters share my love for it and awarded it 17 nominations this year, more than any other program. Game of Thrones leads the dramas with 16 nods, and 30 Rock reigns over the comedies one last time with 13. Saturday Night Live holds the record for having the highest total of nominations for a variety show — or any show — with its 171 nods. But considering it’s been Emmy-eligible for 38 years now and has thus received average of 4.5 nominations per year, its longevity is more impressive than its nomination history. That said, SNL earned 15 nominations this year, more than thrice its average. This is the show’s second most-nominated...

Completion for completion’s sake totally sucks

By on Jun 16, 2013 in Inner Monologues, Rants | 0 comments

I have attachment issues — not with people, luckily, but with stories. I’m ashamed when I don’t make it to the last page or the final frame. But, in some cases, I stop right before the end and feel like I can’t proceed. Alex and I saw Cirque du Soleil’s Totem recently. No, I’m not citing it as an example — we loved every minute of it. Buoyed by its exuberance — and perhaps wanting to debunk what could only be described as theatrical and athletic magic — we started the Bravo series Cirque du Soleil: Fire Within, a documentary about the creation of Cirque’s Varekai. Surprisingly, the closer to opening night of Varekai the show’s chronology progressed, the less engaging the show became. Is it because we already know — as viewers in 2002 perhaps did not — that the production of Varekai was a rousing success? Is it because we were seeing the...