Meant to start the fall TV preview barrage, but I’ll start it tomorrow, promise.
When Michael Clarke Duncan died last night, I couldn’t have been the only one thinking that it was because his triglycerides were high and his bad cholesterol was shockingly high, and that he had to cut out all those pork rinds. “PORK RIND THIS!!!”
Or maybe he started singing the low parts to Leaving on a Jet Plane as he faded off. Either way, Michael Clarke Duncan was one of the most underrated “cool” actors around with a really infectious smile. How did I not know he had a heart attack in July? Totally missed that. But it’s too bad he’s gone, I liked him in pretty much anything he’s in, except for Daredevil, which he kinda brought down. I wouldn’t click through my Netflix queue and say, “Oh, Michael Clarke Duncan is in this, I should move it to the top,” but I have watched movies and said, “Oh, cool, I didn’t realize he was in this!” My favorite Michael Clarke Duncan movies:
Armageddon: “Hey man. Let’s draw and see who’s gonna stay up here and dance.” Amen.
Night at the Roxbury: For no other reason than he set up one of the Sadowski household’s favorite lines, one we use constantly:
The Whole Nine Yards: Writers of the thousands and thousands of mob movies get to sit around and think up cool mob guy names. No one probably had more fun with this than Nicolas Pileggi writing Goodfellas in the scene where the random guys of the crew were given their split second of fame. But of all the names writers have come up with, has anyone ever come up with anything better than Frankie Figs? Or found a more perfect real-person fit for the name? Don’t bother looking it up. The answer is no.
Talladega Nights: Really the only comedy Duncan was seen in for more than like five minutes — and he held his own pretty well against some comedy giants. I full expected to go in hating this movie, and didn’t. Not saying it all was because of Duncan, but he certainly didn’t stick out as a reason anyone should hate it.
The Green Mile: Umm, I’ve never seen it. But I’m pretty sure it’s good and he’s good in it, seeing as he got the whole Oscar nomination thing going on here.
Yes, yes, yes, yes!!! We just witnessed one of the worst bombs in movie history this weekend! Oogieloves, apparently something about a bunch of puppets that sing and dance — which we’ve never seen before — had one of the worst openings ever, a $55 million film that grossed less than $500,000 this weekend in wide release. That’s almost impossible to do. You almost have to put up some kind of effort to make that happen, like spending millions of dollars to carefully position cinema employees at the theater doors to bar people from going in and refund their money. Since I didn’t even know this was a movie when I put out my picks for biggest bomb of the summer, I’m not counting it. Instead, I’ll just say that yeah, I did pretty well picking Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and Total Recall as my bombs for the summer. Maybe we’ll put off TV until next week and do some summer movie season recaps the rest of the week. Wait! The column! Yeah, that’s what I’ll do for this week’s Sunday column.
What a poop summer of TV. I only routinely watched three shows all summer — Breaking Bad, Workaholics and Wilfred. I tried to watch some others, but found myself bored out of my freakin’ mind after a couple minutes in just about all of them. Dallas took me two weeks to get bored after a decent pilot. Just blech. And this point, it’s probably fair to mention that I did, however, watch two episodes of that Honey Boo Boo thing during the marathon on TLC yesterday. So I apparently thought it was more engaging than Anger Management.
Did someone say poop TV? Then step right up Jersey Shore! What makes me angry about MTV’s big announcement that Jersey Shore would be ending after this season is the gaggle of people who audibly cheered around the world when they realized Jersey Shore was finally ending its reign of terror. I want the show off the air more than anyone, but this isn’t the end! All MTV has done is end the Jersey Shore Proper show. There are still two spin-offs that aren’t going ANYWHERE. And now MTV only has to pay three people for their work instead six. Seven? I don’t even know how many people were on this POS. Maybe cutting off the head of the snake is a step in the right direction, but I’m not falling for this as “good” news that the reality craze could somehow be ending. Especially not when this announcement seems to take precedence over MTV’s own VMA hype.
At some point, I went to sleep. I must have been tired, really, really tired. Because when I went to sleep, I knew Michael Strahan as a semi-charming former football player who had trouble talking without a lisp and didn’t really say many interesting things whenever he was on TV. Subway commercials. Pizza Hut or Domino’s commercials, one or the other, I don’t even know which. NFL Fox Sunday. The guy was everywhere! Nothing existed that this guy wouldn’t plug. But even with all that face time, he didn’t really strike me as a.) intelligent, b.) engaging or c.) interesting. Not for a second. So then I woke up, and he’s been named the co-host of Live! with Kelly Ripa. So what was I asleep for, 10 years? 15? Where are all those flying cars we’re supposed to have by now!
You know when you hear something once in passing, and it sounds so logical and makes so much sense that you just figure it’s true? That’s me right now with the new rumor that Batman will be rebooted with the Justice League movie that may or may not come out in 2015. Which means you can probably expect another Batman movie by, say, 2018. Yeah, that sounds about right. I could have swore we heard this already around Dark Knight Rises time, didn’t we? Maybe not. Stuff seems to meld together more these days. But introducing characters in the Justice League movie instead of in their own movies? That seems like a big missed opportunity. So DC effed up the Green Lantern movie royal, so what? There’s no reason to think that’s going to happen with Wonder Woman and Flash movies too. Well, at least a Wonder Woman movie could be OK. A Flash movie is just slipping on the Bad Idea Jeans completely. The whole thing just reeks of desparation of trying to somehow trump or at least keep up with Avengers. Mistake.