scouring the net

I’m ticked at myself that it’s taken so long, but I’m trying to upgrade this blog a little.

Actually, that only means one thing — I’ve put links on the right-hand column of the page. I’m fine with plugging these sites, b/c it’s where I get a good chunk of the news

I’m going to add to them as much as I can, and if anyone has one of value they think should be on that list, feel free to send it to me anytime. I’m especially looking for blogs of note, because I just don’t use them that much and don’t think many of them are very well-kept. There are some exceptions I know I’m forgetting, that’s why I’m looking for people to send them in to me.

So wherever you go to get your entertainment news, send along the link and I’ll get it on there. Here’s the ones I have and why I have them:

Sharp: Look, we stopped printing the thing and this blog is the only thing I update on it anymore. But the entertainment news is still there and updated each day, and it’s where I go first in the morning to find out what’s going on.

IMDB: I used to be the friend that people called at 1:30 while they were in the bar to ask things like, “We were just rewatching In the Line of Fire and we’re wondering who the bank lady with the red hair that John Malkovich killed was!” I actually got that call in like 2000, and I knew off the top of my head that she was Principal DeWitt’s secretary in Growing Pains. That was exactly what my buddies had been thinking of, even though it took me 5 times to say it since I was at a different bar and we could barely hear each with The Thong Song blaring in our ears. That was all before IMDB. Now, all that knowledge is available at one spot. To me, it’s the most invaluable resource on the Internet and a colossally dangerous time waster. Now, the calls I get at 1:30 in the morning are of the variety “When we went to Opening Day in 2003, who pitched for the Phils?” That one came in a couple months ago. The answer was the immortal Joe Roa, of course. Thank God I’m still useful for something.

Rotten Tomatoes: It’s one of those things you can’t believe you didn’t think of first — a Web site that compiles movie reviews from around the country and puts them all in one place, giving them a composite score. Sheer genius. The daily news link section is also pretty good.

The Hollywood Reporter: You need to know a little bit about Hollywood speak (turnaround, spec script, etc.) to really understand it but it does a fantastic job on a daily basis. It’s only boring once a month, maybe.

Variety: The content probably is better than THR, but you need to have 20/10 vision to navigate/read it.

Entertainment Weekly: Has anyone noticed EW has really taken a dive recently? Maybe it happened when the mag put Twilight on the cover for an astounding 42 straight weeks. It’s almost as if they were trying to invent their own Jump the Shark subcategory. Which reminds me, I need to get on the links. He’s a rich nerd . . .

MTV Splash Page: Dedicated to comics becoming movies. Since disappeared, this is the best page of its ilk out there.

New York Times arts section: It wasn’t until I came to the Pocono Record that I started thoroughly reading the NYT, and what I’ve found, much to my surprise and delight, is that the NYT does a standout job when it comes to major pop culture news and especially trends. I guess I was a little biased, I thought it was too high-brow to be useful. Plus, AO Scott is the best movie critic in the country.

LA Times entertainment news: Still the best at what it does, even if it’s laid off like half of its staff.

Metacritic: Like Rotten Tomatoes for movie reviews, but with music and TV too. I have friends who swear by it — I don’t like it as much because I think their grading system is harder to understand and a little skewed.

Collider: A pretty raw site run by a guy who doesn’t mind dropping F-bombs, but very fanboy friendly.

YouTube: Someday I’m going to take a full day at work and scour YouTube to put together a PopRox page of cool, funny stuff. The Midnight Madness tribute I saw the other day would be at the top of the list, as would the Family Ties reunion from the Today show last year. Until then, explore it for yourself.

AOL TV Calendar: I find mistakes on here every now and then (I Love Money season 2 starts Feb. 2, not Jan. 26), but there’s a 99.9999 percent chance if I’m referencing a premiere date or a season finale date, I got it from here. Invaluable resource for people who forget when to DVR things. It’s basically become a gossip site since it was sold. It’s two best writers — Matt Roush and Mike Ausiello — have gone on to better things. But it does still break TV news, it’s just harder to find on the site.

Sports Guy’s World: Bill Simmons is the best writer in journalism today and the most influential in my life. If I’m sitting at my desk at work laughing, it’s probably because I’m reading Bill Simmons.

Nikki Finke’s Deadline Daily: She’s been making herself the news a little too much recently, but when the LA Times picks a fight with you, you must be doing something right.

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