Friday, July 31, 2009

Universal Remote

Two words copulate to breed a $15 lie that is somehow more damnably false than the sum of its parts.

RATING: 3%



(Image from www.goodhousekeeping.com.)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Coconut M&Ms

When I told my friend that I'd bought these, he didn't believe they existed, and rightly so -- there is no real reason why coconut-flavored M&Ms should exist. I know it's summer and all, and summer makes us long for palm trees and exotic islands, but there's no reason M&Ms should get involved in a ménage of tropical fantasy. This variety eschews the blue-red-orange-yellow M&M for a disorienting white variety. From the outside, they're about the size of the peanut butter M&Ms, and they taste like a toned-down, solid-chocolate version of an Almond Joy mixed with just a hint of suntan oil. I didn't barf after eating them, and they were totally fine, but I don't think I would pick up another bag of these even if they were on extreme clearance and there was a chance of me finding a golden ticket at the bottom of the bag.

RATING: 31%

Regretfully Yours by Superdrag

As far as inoffensively bland mid-90s rock albums go, you can't do much better than Superdrag's first album, Regretfully Yours. You guys might remember their one and only hit, "Sucked Out," but the rest of the album thankfully maintains that same level of catchy, loud disdain. I heard the lead singer found Jesus or something and they broke up, but ultrafan Bryan can probably fill you in on that. Check this out and why not buy some clove cigarettes or get excited about a Roland Emmerich movie or whatever else was cool in 1996.

RATING: 78%

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Mulholland Drive

#26 on Glenn's Top 100 Movie List

Mulholland Drive is a nice movie about a young aspiring actress who comes to Hollywood to make it big! It was made by the director of Walt Disney's Dune, and is really uplifting and fun. Ha ha, just kidding about all the nice stuff. This movie doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but it does manage to create a complex tonal and emotional landscape. I'm not big on decoding symbolism or meaning in art - that junk is for science nerds, math nerds, and philosophy douchebags. If it doesn't make me feel something, then it fails, and Mulholland Drive takes me through a terrifying spectrum of emotion every time I watch it, so there.

RATING: 93%

Friday, July 24, 2009

Comic Three-In-One

Daredevil Vol. 2: Parts of a Hole

Daredevil is blind, and he meets this woman, Echo, who wants to kill him but she's deaf, get it? It's actually pretty good, in no small part thanks to David Mack's writing/layouts (no part of me can give Joe Quesada praise, sorry).

RATING: 79%





Fantastic Four: Into The Breach

Roll call: Human Torch! Namorita! Scott Lang Ant-Man! She-Hulk! My vomit everywhere!

RATING: 22%





The Incredible Hulk Vol. 2: Boiling Point

Ugh, I bought this for 30 issues, Jesus.

RATING: 19%

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Sting

#27 on Glenn's Top 100 Movie List

Speaking of Robert Shaw, The Sting is about a couple of hucksters who want to con this mean rich guy out of a lot of money during the olden times when there was no such thing as stealing or crime (according to old white people). Like all great caper movies, you forget all the little details of the scheme, so every time you watch it it's like watching it click together for the first time. It's a great movie, and I bet if the internet was around in the 70s in the way it is today there'd be a lot of Newman/Redford slash fic out there, thought to be fair I bet there's probably a bunch anyway (I'm not checking).

RATING: 90%

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Top 20 Baby Names of 2008

Top 10 Girls Names:
1. Emma RATING: 37%
Admit it, you've never read Austen in your life.
2. Sophia RATING: 71%
Thank you for being a friend.
3. Madison RATING: 4%
Sure, go ahead and name your daughter after the most materialistic avenue in world. Might as well add "Rodeo" to this list, too.
4. Isabella RATING: 29%
Points off for pretension.
5. Olivia RATING: 80%
Okay this one's kinda cute.
6. Ava RATING: 63%
Points off for having sex with Hitler.
7. Madeline RATING: 51%
It was a fun kids' book, but c'mon.
8. Addison RATING: 2%
If you are naming your baby after a Grey's Anatomy character, you need to be sterilized.
9. Hailey RATING: 18%
Have you seen the Duff sisters?
10. Lily RATING: 85%
It's a flower, it's classic. It's not like "Peony" or "Hydranea"

Top 10 Boys Names:
1. Aiden RATING: 24%
Your son will so get beat up by the Mikes and Matthews of this world.
2. Jayden RATING: 2%
Taking baby-naming tips from Ma Brit-Brit = sterilization
3. Ethan RATING: 55%
Yeah that one's fine I guess. A little dull, but fine.
4. Jacob RATING: 31%
That name better have been your grandma's deathbed request.
5. Caden RATING: 1%
Now you're just making things up that rhyme with Aiden and Jayden. Who wants to yell out "Caden" during sex? Give your son a break.
6. Jackson RATING: 17%
Might wanna re-think this one, Mama.
7. Noah RATING: 39%
When Matt and Mike are done with Aiden, they're coming for Noah.
8. Jack RATING: 87%
Yes please. Give your son a nice normal snappy name so he doesn't end up incarcerated or fathering a "Madison" or a "Jayden." Also points for not coming from the Bible.
9. Logan RATING: 26%
Does your son have superpowers? No? Pick another name.
10. Matthew RATING: 72%
Lacks imagination, but at least he's not getting beat up. Unless you call him "Matty." Don't do that.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Black Panther Vol. 2: Enemy Of The State

Like I said before, Christopher Priest's Black Panther run was probably the definitive run for the character. His use of nonlinear storytelling and humorously titled micro-chapters just propels everything into this insane barrage of pop culture, action, and political intrigue that has not since been matched in comics. This volume follows the title character as he deals with a coup in his home nation, Wakanda, intercut with Bill Clinton attacking Everett K. Ross with a hockey stick and the Avengers mucking everything up. The only downfall is that in the seven issues here they go through like three different artists, although Mark Brooks knocks it out of the park at least.

RATING: 85%

Batman: No Man's Land Vol. 5

Finally America decides to let Gotham be a city again, all because Lex Luthor is leading the charge as the billionaire philanthropist that he is, evil laugh. While real estate fraud is exciting in comics, the best part of this collection is Joker's manipulation behind the scenes, and the final confrontation with him, Batman, and Jim Gordon. This story was done a decade ago, and Joker hasn't been used as anything more than a lackey since. While that's a shame, I guess this is as good a way to go out as any?

RATING: 86%

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Man fends off Wyo. lion attack with chainsaw

Probably a young boy's chainsaw fantasy come true. Except the news story said it was a 4-5 year old lion who was starving, thereby creating moral and ethical complexity. Whose side to choose? I'm with the dude and the chainsaw. It's not everyday you get to square off against nature's killing machines with a good ol' American made killing machine of our own. Maybe this will spawn a reality series.




+





Rating: Title Says It All%

Red Pepper Jelly

If there's anything I despise more than bluegrass music, Bud Lime, and Slovaks, it's the hubris of people who dare to make things into jelly that have no business being made into jelly. I don't care if it's delicious on water crackers with cream cheese--that's not the fucking point.

RATING: Sounds like guts%

(Image from www.caribbeanflava.co.uk.)

Crumpets

A crumpet is a sort of Eurotrash pancake that you can reheat in the toaster and smear with jam. They're low cal sans condiments, and are thus a good choice for your fat kids.

RATING: Harry Potter%


(Image from wifflelevertofull.files.wordpress.com. Crumpet actual size.)

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Well Harry and Dumbledore go on some plucky misadventures, modeled after the pre-Hellenistic notions of pederasty (wands a waving everywhere and what not). As this promotional image tells you, the film tries to explore the relationship of Dumbledore to Harry and the rest of the students at Hogwarts. Result: fail.

Grade: Snape%

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Bruno


Sacha Baron Cohen follows up Borat with gay panic-palooza. I was both delighted and offended within the first five minutes, so I feel I got my money's worth. In usual fashion, Cohen pushes the envelope with ordinary people to see how far he can go before they walk away or threaten violence. Unfortunately, there are only a few scenes of him goading people into saying ridiculous things, my favorites being the scene in which Bruno consults actual "charity image experts" to help him pick a charity and the one in which Bruno talks to parents of baby models to see what they're willing to allow. Most of the scenes are geared around gay stereotypes taken to extremes. Bruno tries to get through boot camp. Bruno talks to gay conversion ministers. Bruno forces captive audience to see his penis. Bruno fellates a ghost. Bruno gets jackhammered in the dookie by various objects. Nice use of ironic music, nonetheless. I laughed and cringed my way through.

Rating: Predictable yet still quite funny% (60%)

Photo courtesy of www.thebrunomovie.com/

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Blade II

Blade II is the story of a vampire-hating half-vampire named Blade, who spends most of his time mercilessly killing any vampire he can find. Basically Blade is a super badass type who has all the powers of vampires except he can actually go out in the sun and eat pizza with garlic sauce. Anyway, in this movie the vampires ask Blade for help because there is a new, more evil breed of vampires out there with SIDEWAYS MOUTHS! Yikes! It sounds dumb and is dumb, but it's also a lot of fun and the action scenes are pretty good, so I think this goes in the top half of Marvel comic movie adaptations.

RATING: 66%

Monday, July 13, 2009

Comic Three-In-One

Supreme Power: Hyperion

I dunno, I guess you can just imagine that the alternate future presented here where Hyperion has taken over Earth represents the conclusion of the Supreme Power series, since it never actually gets resolved.

RATING: 62%


Ultimate X-Men Vol. 8: New Mutants

Boring, endless Bendis-talk, although there is a great single issue here where Logan is sent to deal with a kid whose powers are just to kill everybody around him accidentally.

RATING: 67%



Sandman Vol. VI: Fables & Reflections

A collection of standalone issues, with the retelling of Orpheus and Eurydice being the strongest. I guess only half of my Sandman trades move the story forward, but whatevs, it's still great writing.

RATING: 71%

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Zaitzeff


Zaitzeff is one of New York City's many popular burger joints, and is known for serving beef that is free-range, antibiotic and hormone-free and for hand-cut, skillet fried sweet and regular potato fries. I was excited to try it out for lunch Friday, but left sadly disappointed. My friend and I split one each of a kobe and a sirloin burger. Both of these were obviously great beef, cooked perfectly to a wonderful texture, and served on tasty Portuguese muffins...all makings of a great burger. BUT, the meat was sadly lacking in the flavor department. Honestly, I think it just need more salt to wake up all that great meat.* The fries were also almost great, but suffered from the same total lack of salting. I'll definitely go back in the hope that they were just on an off day, but on this occasion I was disappointed by the unrealized potential for a great burger. So sad.


Rating: 76%

*That's what she said.

(Photo from A Hamburger Today.)

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Malice

Not that I'd ever personally wish to harm anybody. I mean, big deal, so you took my stuffed bear dressed as Uncle Sam, I don't care. Like, it's a bunch of energy to actually go to your place at 1423 Richards, Apt. 4 and take the spare key out from under your disgusting doormat. Enough tragedy befalls everybody eventually anyway. For example, a lot of people have accidents in their homes, with kitchen knives? They might be clumsy and fall on them or something a couple times. So it's beneath me to even think about it. I have too many friends to hang out with, each of whom is capable of verifying my presence at whatever time or place we choose to share in our revelry. Also I hear random, unsolvable muggings-turned-homicides are up in your neighborhood. Be safe!

RATING: 49%

Friday, July 10, 2009

Poppy Seed Tea

People who want to feel like a big shot law student in New York but don't want to date losers or study all the time can always ingest the seeds of Papaver somniferum in some ethnic-urban confection and then fail a drug test. However, my own research suggests that attempting to extract the trace alkaloids (i.e. opium) from 600 grams of seeds using a mixture of water, lemon juice and heat results in a foul tasting, oily mixture with no apparent medicinal properties. Disappointed readers might try befriending a hill tribe or Laurie.

RATING: 1%

(Image from www.kansasoz.com.)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Movie Three-In-One

Pay It Forward

When someone does you a big favor, don't pay it back...

RATING: 27%







Closer

If you believe in love at first sight, you never stop looking.

RATING: 12%








Shaun of the Dead

A romantic comedy. With zombies.

RATING: 73%

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

"Shoes" by Tiga

Reposting for our friends outside the U.S. MTV wouldn't allow the vid to be shown outside, so I've switched it to YouTube.



This video is everything I love about electroclash music. The style, the creative risks, the icy nonchalance of sexuality. It's like dipping your nipples in liquid chrome.

No relation to Kelly's "Shoes," btw.

Rating: Kitsch-orgasm% (94-ish%)

Monday, July 6, 2009

Drag Me To Hell

PG-13 rating and still the best horror movie you've seen in a while. I love Sam Raimi. But I haven't seen Spider-Man 3, yet. And I think The Gift is forgivable. How many good-to-great movies have you directed?

RATING: 85%

Funny Games (2008)

I saw the preview for this film in the theaters and thought it was supposed to be a dark comedy. So I finally get around to watching it, and it is pretty funny at times. But apparently a lot of critics were horrified by the film, and for some ridiculous reason compared it to the likes of Eli Roth's Hostel. It's not as graphic, and most of the violence occurs off-screen (a completely effective method in this film for several reasons). There are some incredibly great scenes focusing more on tension and emotion, or lack thereof, in the film, and it does a fantastic job of making a great point about violence in Hollywood, or whatever. Go see this movie because I told you it's worth it, and critics are fucking stupid too.

RATING: 81%

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Semi-Homemade with Sandra Lee


Semi-Homemade is a terrible show on the Food Network where the WASP-iest woman you've ever seen "combines 70% ready-made products with 30% fresh" to make mediocre 70% processed food dishes that I wouldn't let anywhere near my damn kitchen. Recipe highlights include "Mascarpone and Grape Puff Pastry Bites" (includes bacos!), "Tea Sandwiches" (Seriously? Tea Sandwiches?), and Spicy Bat Wings and Bat Chips with Goblin Dip (received a whopping ONE star from reviewers on her website). The only props I will give this show is that Lee includes a cocktail recipe in each episode, but I do have to take those props back because she also includes a "tablescape" design in each episode. Lame!

Rating: 2%

A Month of Boring Things - Day Seventeen: Junebugs

Holy shit, look out! Oh, wait, that's not a flying palmetto bug, it's just a junebug. Forget about it.

RATING: 39%

Friday, July 3, 2009

Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen

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RATING: 8%

A Month Of Boring Things - Day Sixteen: The Trackball Mouse

Fine, I get it, nobody enjoys the kind of great wrist health that you do, but you'll still never catch me using one of these things.

RATING: masturbationjoke%

X-Force: New Beginnings

Imagine this: you're a regular reader of X-Force because you love the darker side of mutant life, and seeing a bunch of heroes cross lines heroes don't usually cross, but then all of the sudden Warren Ellis' run ends and you have this bizarrely drawn critique of consumer culture written by Peter Milligan. While I can't personally imagine anybody liking X-Force before this book, it must have been a pretty big shock. That's not to say this trade isn't great, though, because it is. It's weird that a mainstream, (presumably) in continuity book would go in such a strange direction, but hey, it was the new millennium anything could happen. Oh yeah, the plot is that a corporation trademarks the name X-Force and then hires a bunch of mutants to fight crime/bad guys so they can make bank on all the merchandising rights.

RATING: 78%

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Keurig Single Cup Coffee Maker

Even a retarded chimpanzee with hooks for hands could make a decent cup of coffee with this thing. Of course he'd be utterly confused and enraged by the fact that the most concentrated "espresso" setting just makes 100 ml less of the same medium-strength coffee as the second last setting. Also, it only does one cup at a time, so if he wanted to serve his friends refreshments after a hard day of stealing and eating human babies, he'd have to make several trips back and forth from the kitchen. But the worst thing about the Keurig is that every individual serving comes packaged in a disposable plastic container, so a month of moderate use is probably worse for the environment than an army of retarded chimpanzees with hooks for hands.

RATING: 74%

(Image from http://only-cookware.com.)

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

A Month of Boring Things - Day Fifteen: Twisted Ankles

Twisted ankles occur when you drive to the seedy side of town to buy beer so that nobody you know can calculate just how much alcohol you've imbibed in the last two hours. After you buy two Natural Light tallboys (for $2.50, after tax), what do you do, cowboy? Well naturally, you step off the curb without looking and, ¡ojo!, immeasurable pain. But don't worry; you're not getting any Lorcet out of this bad boy--just some swelling.






Rating: 4%

New X-Men Vol. 1: E Is For Exitinction

Grant Morrison's X-Men run was the most exciting and different direction the book had been taken in decades, so of course exactly one issue after he was done Marvel retconned it all away. Who better to follow one of the greatest writers of comics today than Chuck Austen? We can forget all that when we read back through his book, and the first trade captures the nuances of all the cast (Wolvie, Cyke, Jean Grey, Emma Frost, and Beast) perfectly, while adding the complications necessary to bring said characters to life. Sure, it's cool to hate Cyclops, but Morrison turns his dickishness into a kind of charm.

RATING: 95%

Fallout 3

Fallout 3 is an action/RPG type game that takes place in the ruins of Washington DC 200 years after World War III. The game is really complex and detailed, like you have to figure out clues for missions by reading people's diaries and shit, and also you can change the path of the game by being a jerk and stealing/killing people or being nice if you want. This game took me two months of pretty solid gameplay to beat, but after all the buildup and exploration of this massive environment with hundreds of engageable characters (but only like 5 voice actors unfortunately), the end was a total letdown. Oh well, I guess any game in which you have to steal the Declaration of Independence back from a robot dressed as founding father Button Gwinnett can't be all bad.

RATING: 76%

(Not to make Viking Andrew feel bad about his Red Ring Of Death)