March 29, 2012

New SNL Cast Member - VIDEO

Yesterday we announced that Saturday Night Live will be adding a new female cast member named Kate McKinnon.  We didn't know much about her at the time, other than that she frequently performed at the UCB theater, but we now know a little more about her.  She actually has a sketch comedy background, starring on the Rosie O'Donnell-produced The Big Gay Sketch Show for all 3 seasons on the LOGO network.  (She will also be SNL's first ever out lesbian cast member.)  Here is a clip of her signature character Fitzwilliam, a British boy whose only wish is for a vagina.  Just hit the big PLAY button below to watch.

MORE BREAKING NEWS: New SNL Cast Member Announced!

According to Deadline, it was announced that UCB comedian Kate McKinnon will be joining the cast of Saturday Night Live starting on next Saturday's episode on April 3 hosted by Sophia Vergara.  She was apparently hired in response to rumors that Kristen Wiig might be leaving the show after her contract expires at the end of this season (nothing is official yet).  

Looking forward to seeing what Kate McKinnon adds to the show!  

BREAKING NEWS: Ron Bergundy Appears on Conan to Announce Anchorman 2!

On tonight's episode of Conan, Will Ferrell made a surprise appearance as Anchorman's Ron Bergundy to announce that a sequel to Anchorman will in fact be happening!  The sequel has been rumored for years, but due to studio negations it never took off.  They have now reached an agreement, and the sequel will be moving forward.  Judd Apatow will once again produce along with Will Ferrell's Gary Sanchez Productions and original director Adam McKay will be directing.  Co-stars Steve Carell and Paul Rudd will also be returning.  Based on the articles I've read, it is not yet known if David Koechner or Christina Applegate will be back for the sequel.

As a huge fan of Anchorman, I am very excited about this new!  Check out Rob Bergundy's announcement on Conan below!

March 26, 2012

TV Star Spotlight: Stephen Colbert

Stephen Colbert is best known as the host of the late night political comedy talk show The Colbert Report.  But the host of the show is not Stephen Colbert, it is actually Stephen Colbert.  You see, Stephen Colbert is a character played by an actor and comedian named Stephen Colbert.  While the two have much in common (such as their names), they actually quite different.  For one, the real Stephen Colbert is an actor who has played many different characters on many different TV shows,  before landing the role of playing the host of The Colbert Report.  So let's take a look back at some of the lesser known Stephen Colbert TV roles before The Report.

In 1995, Colbert starred in his first major TV show, the short-lived Comedy Central sketch comedy show Exit 57.  The show co-starred comedians Amy Sedaris, Paul Dino, and Mitch Rouse.

In 1996 Colbert starred on another short-lived sketch comedy show The Dana Carvey Show.  The show ran on ABC for just one season before it was canceled, and starred Dana Carvey fresh off his run on Saturday Night Live.  Steve Carell also starred on the show, often being teamed up with Colbert in sketches.   In this sketch, Colbert and Carell star as waiters who are nauseated by food.

From 1999-2000, Colbert re-teamed with Amy Sedaris to star in Strangers with Candy, a parody of after school specials.  Amy Sedaris starred as a student, and Stephen played her teacher.

Colbert also starred on the Adult Swim animated series Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law.   The show starred Birdman, the character from the old Hannah Barbara carton Birdman and the Galaxy Trio, as a retired superhero and now modern day lawyer defending various other Hannah Barbara cartoon characters in court.  Colbert voiced two main characters - the first was Harvey's eye-patched boss Phil Ken Sebben, and the other was Reducto, a paranoid opposing lawyer who was obsessed with shrinking people with his shrink gun.

Colbert also provided his voice to "The Ambiguously Gay Duo", the popular Satuday Night Live cartoon which started out on The Dana Carvey Show.  Colbert played Ace opposite Steve Carell's Gary.

Stephen Colbert also of course starred on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart as one of the original correspondents (once again with Steve Carell).  Here is Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell's popular segment "Even Stevphen", where the two debate religion.

Which brings us to The Colbert Report.  The Report is a spin off of The Daily Show, which gave Stephen Colbert's popular on-screen character his own show.  Here is Stephen Colbert as Report host Stephen Colbert, in a recent episode of The Colbert Report where he unveils his new avant-garde Super PAC ad:

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The Colbert Report returns from a short hiatus tonight at 11:30 on Comedy Central!

Jimmy Fallon's "Tebowie" to be Released on Vinyl!

April 21 is Record Store Day, a day when artists release special rare or unreleased tracks on vinyl records to be sold at local record stores.  This year, Jimmy Fallon will be releasing a 7" single of his hit song "Tebowie", as featured on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.  For those of you who don't know, Tebowie is a hybrid of football star Tim Tebow and rock star David Bowie.  The songs are parodies of David Bowie songs about Tim Tebow.  It's not entirely clear which Tebowie song will appear on the album (the original "Space Oddity" parody, the "Changes" parody featured in The Voice segment, or the more recent "Ziggy Stardust" parody), but I assume it will be the original "Space Oddity" parody.  The B-side of the album will be Jimmy's cover of the theme from "Reading Rainbow", as sung by The Doors.  As a collector of comedy records on vinyl, I can't wait to pick this up!  Stop by your local record store on April 21 to get your copy!  It was also announced that a full album (CD) of Fallon's hit songs from Late Night will be coming out later this summer!

Tebowie (the new one, the original isn't available online)

Reading Rainbow (as sung by The Doors)

March 23, 2012

Weird Al on 30 Rock - Recap

If you've been reading this blog lately, then you should know that "Weird Al" Yankovic was on 30 Rock last night. We thought he was did a great job on the show, and we really enjoyed his performances.  For those of you who missed it, here are some clips of his appearance on last night's show:

Weird Al also had the honor of providing lyrics to the 30 Rock theme in the show's tag ending:

Also, check out this behind the scenes video of Weird Al filming his scenes, and talking about how being on 30 Rock was a real dream come true:

March 22, 2012

REMINDER: Weird Al on 30 Rock tonight!

Don't forget to watch "Weird Al" Yankovic on 30 Rock tonight at 9:00 ET on NBC!  It's the second episode of two back-to-back episodes starting at 8:30 ET.  Here's a new photo that Al posted from the episode, which is slightly different than the one we previously posted:


March 21, 2012

BREAKING NEWS: 30 Rock to do 2nd Live Episode!

This just in!  According to HuffPo, 30 Rock is planning to film a second live episode on April 26!  30 Rock previously did a live episode last season, and I thought it was really great.  No word yet on the plot of the episode or if there will be any guest stars.  Here's a great clip from last season's live show:

The live episode also featured some live commercials, such as this one from everyone's favorite NBC doctor, Dr. Spaceman:

No word either on whether or not the new live episode will similarly contain commercials.  Guess we'll have to wait until April 26 to find out!

Clip of the Day: Tebowie Returns!

On Late Night with Jimmy Fallon last night, Tim Tebow/David Bowie hybrid "Tebowie" returned to sing about his recent replacement by Peyton Manning:

Who Dat Ninja? Mitt Romney's Son on SNL

A few weeks ago we were watching the following sketch on Saturday Night Live:

When they showed Romney's sons, we obviously recognized Seth Meyers, Fred Armisen, Taran Killam,. and Bobby Moynihan, but who plays the other son?  It turns out it's Mike O'Brien, one of the writers for SNL.  O'Brien has actually appeared on the show many times, but he is probably most known for his talk show 7 Minutes in Heaven.  You've never heard of it?  That's probably because it's not on TV. It's an internet talk show that takes place in O'Brien's closet.  He interviews mostly SNL and other TV stars, and asks them weird questions about themselves or has them act out silly scenarios with him.  Each interview then ends with Mike O'Brien awkwardly attempting to kiss his guest.   Here's a few of our favorite episodes of 7 Minutes in Heaven.

Kristen Wiig

Tracy Morgan

Ty Burrell

Seth Meyers

To see all the other guests who have joined Mike in the closet, check out all the videos here.

March 20, 2012

Who Dat Ninja? - President of Pawnee's Seniors United

Parks And Rec Carl Reiner 120301

A few weeks ago, this old man appeared on an episode of Parks & Recreation as Ned Jones, the President of Pawnee Seniors United.  While this man may not be recognizable to most, he is actually a comedy legend who has won multiple Emmys, Grammys, and even the prestigious Mark Twain Prize for comedy.  So who is this man you ask?  Looks like it's time for another edition of Who Dat Ninja?

This man is none other than the great Carl Reiner.  Carl Reiner began his career as an actor, playing the straight man to the crazy Sid Cesar on the 1950's variety show Your Show of Shows:

After Your Show of Shows ended, Reiner used his experience on the show to create the wildly successful Dick Van Dyke Show.  The show starred Dick Van Dyke (obviously) as Rob Pettrie, a comedy writer for a fictional variety show called The Alan Brady Show.  (Liz Lemon anyone?)  Carl Reiner not only created and wrote for the show, but also played the occasional role of the show's talent Alan Brady.  Here is a classic episode which features Carl Reiner as Alan Brady, where's Rob's wife Laura (Mary Tyler Moore) reveals to the world that Alan wears a toupee:

Carl Reiner also teamed with with comic filmmaker Mel Brooks (who wrote for Your Show of Shows) to create the classic "2,000 Year Old Man" comedy routine.  Reiner and Brooks used to improvise the routine backstage at Your Show of Shows, and then started performing it for friends at parties.  The routine became so successful, that they released 5 albums, the last of which won a Grammy Award for best comedy album.  In the routine, Reiner again played the straight man, interviewing Mel Brooks who claimed to be a man who was 2,000 years old.

Reiner has also had much success in film, writing and directing many films, many of which were for Steve Martin, such as Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid, The Man with Two Brains, and most famously, The Jerk.  He has acted in many films as well, most notably in the Oceans trilogy as Saul Bloom:

Carl Reiner is also the father of Rob Reiner, who starred on All in the Family and directed such classic films as The Princess Bride, This is Spinal Tap, and When Harry Met Sally... (Carl's wife, Estelle Reiner, delivered the famous "I'll have what she's having" line in the film).

Carl Reiner and Rob Reiner - AARP Magazine's "10th Annual Movies For Grownups" Awards Gala - Red Carpet

And finally, here is Carl Reiner on Parks and Recreation!

And that's Carl Reiner, the guy who plays the President of Pawnee's Seniors United on Parks & Rec.  Today also happens to be Carl Reiner's 90th birthday, so Happy Birthday Carl!

Guest Post: American Idol Recap - Top 13

Here's a new American Idol Recap from Guest Blogger Daniel!

 Jessica Sanchez impressed slaying one of Whitney Houston’s classics

So, Idol is back with the top 13 and they are singing songs in tribute to the late Whitney Houston with the girls singing songs by Whitney herself and the guys singing songs by the great Stevie Wonder. Also, a twist! America will vote on the bottom guy and bottom girl and the judges will chose to save one of them. Also, I liked Ryan’s backstage intro. And its American Idol’s 400th episode. To the recap!

Joshua Ledet                         I Wish
Joshua did a really good job with this up-tempo song. Mary J. Blige made a smart move by putting the guy with the church background on the piano to make him more comfortable with the song. I also noticed the little hand thing he did and I agree with J-Lo that it's not really a bad thing. A-

Elise Testone                         I’m Your Baby Tonight
I actually thought this was pretty solid. Was it fantastic? No. But it was pretty good, especially considering that she had just learned the song. I thought the judges were really too hard on her.  B

Jermaine Jones                     Knocks Me Off My Feet
I really like his voice but this performance was just boring. The vocals weren’t bad, it's just that there was nothing really interesting. I like Jermaine but it’s a fierce competition. I hope he makes it, but I’m a bit concerned. If he does make it through, he will have to really come through next week with a performance as good as “Dance With My Father” was last week. C+

Erika Van Pelt                     I Believe In You And Me
When I first heard her sing in the video I thought it was a boy. At the beginning of the performance, same thing!  That said, Erika and her low voice that I once hated pulled out a solid performance. It was really impressive how at the end she hit the high note. I wouldn’t say it was “unbelievable” the way Randy did, but it was good. But what did she mean at the end when she said that she has “fire inside?” Anyway EVP was solid but not great. B+

Colton Dixon                         Lately
Colton is probably my favorite contestant and “Lately” probably my favorite Stevie Wonder song. But like Jimmy said, Stevie is not Colton’s wheelhouse. That said, he is immensely talented and I was sure that he could pull it off, especially with a song as great as “Lately”. The problem with choosing “Lately” though was it was done by Stefano Langone last season and he absolutely killed it. Colton would not only have to nail it but really put his own spin on it. And he did. Colton delivered a practically flawless vocal. Also, how incredible was the falsetto at the end. Also, I loved the small part of his original song we heard in the video. I’m ready to buy a Colton Dixon album. He hereby receives my official endorsement for American Idol this season. Colton Dixon 2012! A

Shannon Magrane                  I Have Nothing *Worst Performance Of The Night*
I like Shannon a lot but early in that song she lost her breath. However, until then, she was singing pretty well. But then her voice cracked and it went down hill from there. This was defiantly not Shannon’s best performance. However, I did not know what the judges were talking about with the band possibly being off at the beginning. Hoping that Shannon sticks around but that was not a great performance. C-

DeAndre Brackensick             Master Blaster
I really like his personality. His reaction to the backstage footage of him crying was really funny. I like his voice, he just has to make sure he doesn’t overuse his falsetto, like he did when he sang “Georgia On My Mind” for his life. And he nailed it tonight. This is what the judges saw in him. This was so good it made me feel better about the fact that he got the wild card spot over Reed Grimm and Eben Franckewitz. Also male Naima, Steven?  Really??? Really with Seth AND Amy??? DeAndre deserves better then that. Anyway, great job DeAndre! Your really winning me over. A

Skylar Laine                           Where Do Broken Hearts Go
Skylar took on the daunting task of “Where Do Broken Hearts Go.” Not only is this a great song and a tough one to sing but it was sung really well last season by Pia Toscano. That said, Skylar nailed it. Skylar looks like she could be a force to be reckoned with in this competition. A

Heenjun Han                          All Is Fair In Love
This guy is super funny. The thing he did with the pictures he gave to Mary and Jimmy, very funny. But how did he sing? Not too well. I like him but this was very pitchy and boring. However, it wasn’t terrible. He really nailed that last note but the performance was so inconsistent. I loved his banter with J-Lo. I really hope he improves cause he’s lots of fun. That said, he’s got a ways to go. C

Hollie Cavanaugh                  All the Man I Need
WOW! She’s so young. And so small, but she can really belt. I know I just said the female front runner was Skylar, but Hollie looks really strong too. And we cant forget about Colton. And Phillip hasn’t even sung yet. We are in for a great season. Anyway, Hollie was fantastic. A

Jeremy Rosado                      Ribbon In The Sky
Jeremy has a really great voice. His ability to hit that long, high note is something that no other male contestant has. His voice has a purity that no one else has. If he is voted out, Idol will have really lost a talent.  B+

Jessica Sanchez                      I Will Always Love You *Best Performance Of The Night*
This is hard song to sing. Probably Whitney’s biggest hit. And Jessica absolutely nailed it! Just perfect. The lights. The way she looked. The steam. The wind machine. The way she sang. All great. A+

Phillip Phillips                          Superstition
This is the Phillip I know! He bounced off a rough performance by absolutely killing "Superstition". I loved his howl at the end. At the beginning it sorta sounded like he was behind the music, but he caught up by the chorus and nailed the rest of the song. A-

March 18, 2012

We Love Lucy - Part 2

As I described in the "We Love Lucy - Part 1" post, we became obsessed with watching I Love Lucy.  This was last summer (2011), we were just about done watching all the episodes, and I was looking for somewhere Lucy-related we could go for fun.  I thought perhaps there would be a Lucy Museum in New York City or something (we live in North Jersey, very close to New York City).  It turns out that there was a  Lucy Museum in New York, but not New York, New York.  It was in Lucy's hometown of Jamestown, New York, a good 7 hour drive from where we live.  Furthermore, not only did this town have a Lucy Museum (entitled the Lucy Desi Center), but every summer they have an annual "Lucy Fest" where they celebrate all things Lucy!  And not only that, but this particular year, Lucy Fest occurred over what would have been Lucy's 100th birthday!  This was too good to be true!  So we decided to go on a little road trip and spend a long weekend in Jamestown for Lucy Fest!

We got there Friday night just in time for the big parade.  Marching bands and flag twirlers from all over the country marched along with Lucy-themed floats, as hundreds of Lucy fans lined the streets to watch!
The next morning we went on a tour of Jamestown, and saw Lucy's house, Lucy's high school, and even Lucy's grave.

We also got a great overview of the town of Jamestown, which as the proud birthplace of Lucille Ball, has huge Lucy murals painted on various buildings throughout the city.
We then went to the Lucy Desi Museum, which had lots of Lucy and Desi related artifacts, such as the saxophone that Lucy often played in I Love Lucy and one of Lucy's Emmys!
After that, we visited the Desilu Playhouse, which had replica sets from I Love Lucy!
We then went to a staging of My Favorite Husband, Lucy's radio show before I Love Lucy, which was hosted by Greg Oppenheimer, son of I Love Lucy creator and head writer Jess Oppenheimer.
For dinner, we attended a dinner show in a replica Tropicana Club (the night club where Ricky would perform on I Love Lucy).  The show featured Lucy, Ricky, Fred, and Ethel imitators who sang all of the memorable songs that were sung on I Love Lucy.  And for dinner, Ricky's favorite dish: Arroz con pollo (chicken with rice)!
After dinner, we attended an outdoor screening of the film Stone Pillow, a drama that starred Lucy as a homeless woman living in the streets.  While this certainly wasn't the hilarious Lucy that we usually think of, it was interesting to see that she wasn't just a silly comedian, but also a very talented actress.  It was the last film Lucy ever made before she died.
The next morning we went on a boat cruise in a nearby lake and got to meet Joe Mayer, one of the twins who played Little Ricky as a toddler on I Love Lucy!
And after that, we headed home.  We really had a wonderful time in Jamestown and really enjoyed Lucy Fest!  If anyone's interested, they just announced Lucy Fest 2012!

But now that we've finished watching every episode of I Love Lucy,  and being more obsessed with Lucy than ever before, we had nothing to watch!  WE NEEDED MORE LUCY...

(Coming soon, We Love Lucy - Part 3!)

March 17, 2012

Clip of the Day: Will Ferrell the Leprechaun

Happy St. Patrick's Day everyone!  To celebrate, enjoy this old clip of Late Night with Conan O'Brien with guest Will Ferrell, back before he was a movie star and when he was just an SNL cast member.  As you can see, Will Ferrell shows up as a leprechaun for St. Patrick's Day...

Will Ferrell at Conan O'Brien - Sexy Leprechaun from Pontus Olsson on Vimeo.

Weird Al's 30 Rock Episode Scheduled for Next Week!

As we've recently reported, comedy singer "Weird Al" Yankovic will be appearing on an upcoming episode of 30 Rock.  At the time, we didn't know when the episode would air, but we now have an update.  According to Weird Al's official website, his episode will be airing on this upcoming Thursday, March 22, and is entitled "Kidnapped by Danger".  Note that there will actually be 2 new episode of 30 Rock on that day - one in the show's new 8:30 time slot, and a second one immediately after at 9:00 (in place of The Office).  The episode featuring Weird Al will be the second episode airing at 9:00.  Don't miss it!  We'll be sure to post some great clips after the show!  And once again, here's a photo of Al from the upcoming episode:

March 16, 2012

Clip of the Day: Max's Random Thought on Happy Endings

I know it seems like we only ever blog about NBC shows, and while most of our favorite shows are on NBC, we do love some non-NBC shows as well.  One of those shows is the ABC comedy Happy Endings.  In this week's great episode, the group spends the entire episode trying to find a good restaurant for Penny's birthday. (Penny is played by former SNL cast member Casey Wilson.  OK, so I guess there is an NBC connection.)  While the whole episode was great, my favorite part was this completely random Mary Tyler Moore-referencing clip in the cold open.  (And yes, we did happen to just do a blog post partly about Mary Tyler Moore.  That is a complete coincidence).

Happy Endings airs Wednesday nights at 9:30 on ABC (after our other favorite ABC show, Modern Family)!

March 14, 2012

Will Ferrell's Promotional Tour for Casa de mi Padre

This Friday, Will Ferrell has a new movie coming out called Casa de mi Padre.  The film is a spoof of traditional Mexican telenovelas, and features Will Ferrell speaking Spanish throughout the entire film.  As a huge fan of Will Ferrell, I am very excited to see this film.  And based on the commercials I've seen, it looks hilarious.  

Now when most actors have a film to promote, they appear on various talk shows to talk about the movie.  And usually they come out, tell a silly story, and answer the same old questions about the film on each show.  Will Ferrell however, is not like most actors. Over the last few days he has appeared on many talk shows to promote the film, and each appearance is vastly different.  And of course, hilarious.

First up, Will Ferrell appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live.  He arrived on a fake horse, and did the entire interview in Spanish.  

On The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Will Ferrell spent less than a minute talking about the film, and the rest of the time talking about his stylish "comedy helmet".

Will's most "normal" interview was on the Today show with Matt Lauer:

Will appeared again on the Today show in the 4th hour to talk to Hoda and Kathy Lee.  This time, he was joined by co-star Nick Offerman (Ron Swanson from Parks & Recreation).  The two conducted the interview in robes will drinking Bloody Mary's.

Lastly, while not a television appearance, Will Ferrell made a special video for his 3.5 million Facebook friends.  If you're not Facebook friends with Willl Ferrell, I suggest you become one, because you get to see the movie for free!  Check out the video here:

Casa de me Padre arrives in theaters in just 2 days on Friday, March 16!

GIF of the Week: Darryl and Toby do the Looney Tunes Frog Dance

I know I'm late with this again.  I couldn't find the clip I wanted, so naturally I had to spend these past two days finding another one.  

Here, Toby and Darryl perform the Looney Tunes frog dance:

And here's the original dance:

March 13, 2012

Who Dat Ninja? - Irene on The Office

Welcome to the first installment of our newest recurring segment called "Who Dat Ninja?".  "Who Dat Ninja?", which derives its name from the popular Tracy Jordan film, will look into an actor or actress who makes a small guest appearance on a TV show, and we figure out who they are.  ("Who Dat Ninja?" is essentially the same as "Sitcom Moms & Dads", except that they're not playing moms or dads).

Today, we look at Georgia Engel, the little old lady named Irene who has appeared in the last few episodes of The Office as Erin's new friend and employer.

But who is this random old lady?  What has she been in before The Office?  It's time we ask the question, WHO DAT NINJA?

Decades before The Office, back in the 1970's, Georgia Engel starred on Mary Tyler Moore as Georgette, the soft-spoken girlfriend and (spoiler alert) eventual wife of the loud and brass newsman, Ted Baxter.  She became a popular character on the show, and even earned herself two Emmy award nominations for the role.  Here's the beginning of an episode which prominently features Engel's character of Georgette.  (Georgette enters at the 2:15 mark)

More recently, Georgia Engel  appeared on Everybody Loves Raymond as Robert's mother-in-law (Amy's mother) Pat MacDoogle.  Here's a nice little compilation video I found on YouTube of the best of Georgia Engel as Pat MacDoogle on Everybody Loves Raymond:

Lastly, while Georgia Engel is primarily known for her work on television, she has also appeared on the stage.  I had the pleasure of seeing her live on Broadway in the musical The Drowsy Chaperone.  

And that's Georgia Engel, the little old lady on The Office.  Tune in next time when we'll find take a guest actor or actress and ask the question, "Who Dat Ninja?"

So we were sitting around, watching an old episode of the classic Nicktoon Hey Arnold! on Teenick (part of the 90's Are All That block), when Anna recognized that unmistakable voice coming from the show.  "Hey, isn't that Georgette from Mary Tyler Moore?"  Turns out it was.  Georgia Engel voices the old lady with pink hair, a peg leg, and one eyebrow who mistakenly took Arnold's bag of money.  What are the odds that particular episode came on tonight, the day I posted a "Who Dat Ninja?" on Georgia Engel?  Anyway, here is the full (11 minute) episode entitled "Bag of Money" which features the voice of Georgia Engel.  Her character first appears around the 2:00 mark, and then again around the 9:30 mark.

Community Returns in 2 Days!

NBC's cult comedy Community will be returning from its winter hiatus in just 2 days on Thursday!  Here's an epic trailer to get you pumped for the return:

Here's another little promo:

Can't wait 'till Thursday?  To hold you over, Community has released these short animated webisodes.  Enjoy!

Don't miss the return of Community this Thursday, March 15, at 8:00 on NBC!

March 11, 2012

We Love Lucy - Part 1

Years ago, back in my childhood, I still liked TV.  But of course, since I was a child, I mainly watched children's television on the only network for kids - Nickelodeon.  And as the day got later and the kids shows ended, Nickelodeon transitioned into Nick at Nite, the place for TV hits.  While nowadays Nick at Nite airs shows that have only been off the air for a few years like George Lopez and My Wife and Kids, back in the 90's, Nick at Nite aired real classic television from the 50's, 60's, and 70's.  And while I enjoyed the other classic shows like The Munsters, Beverly Hillbillies, and Bewitched, my absolute favorite was I Love Lucy.  I was obsessed with this 1950's black and white show, to the extent that I had an I Love Lucy Board Game, I Love Lucy Monopoly, 2 I Love Lucy posters in my basement, and some I Love Lucy VHS tapes (back in the day when TV Shows on home media was rare).

And as it turned out, years before we ever met, Anna was a big I Love Lucy fan too.  We bonded over our love of the show (amongst other things) and for Anna's birthday in college, I got her the first season of I Love Lucy on DVD.  We'd watch it on occasion in college, and it was fun.  But being as we were in college, we were busy with schoolwork and other things, so we didn't fully get into it.

We stopped watching for a while, and didn't pick it up until a few years later, when we were bored, looking for something to watch, and decided to continue with I Love Lucy where we left off.  And similar to our experience with How I Met Your Mother, we got hooked.  We'd come home after work, and just pop in some I Love Lucy and just watch all night.  After we finished the first season, we decided to just go all out and by the complete series DVD set.  This set had it all: All 6 seasons of I Love Lucy, the 3 seasons the Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour specials, and tons of special features such as the long lost I Love Lucy Movie, a colorized episode, and much more.  It took us about a year or so, but we finally finished watching it, and we truly had a great time.

Although we were hooked on I Love Lucy, it was very different to our addiction to How I Met Your Mother.  With HIMYM, we were mainly driven by the plot of the episodes, and we couldn't wait to see what would happen next and how all of the little details would fit together.  With I Love Lucy, there really wasn't much of an overlying plot.  While there was a little bit of continuity through the episodes (for some episodes they went to California, for some they were traveling through Europe, eventually they moved to the country), you could pretty much watch each episode on its own, and still fully understand what was happening.  What was fun about watching I Love Lucy, is that it we had already seen most of these episodes as children before, so they had a lot of nostalgia.  There were some episodes that were so classic that we looked forward to them, such as the classic Chocolate Factory episode:

And then there would be other episodes, that we forgot about at first, but then as we were watching, it would all come back to us, like this one (Ricky rehearses the song straight first with the professional singer, then at 2:19, Lucy takes over :

And still, there were other episodes that we had either never seen before, or had completely forgotten about, and it was a thrill to watch them for the first time.  But while we may have finished watching all the episodes of I Love Lucy, our Lucy obsession was far from over...

(Coming soon, We Love Lucy - Part 2)

Jonah Hill Brings Adam Grossman Back to SNL!

Jonah Hill hosted Saturday Night Live last night, and we thought he did a great job.  And as we wished for in our previous post last week, he brought back our favorite 6-year-old character - Adam Grossman!  Check out Adam Grossman's return to Benihana below.  You can watch his first appearance in our previous post.

March 9, 2012

Clip of the Day: My Portland

In honor of tonight's season finale of Portlandia, here's a clip from Portlandia featuring Portland's mayor (Kyle MacLachlin) singing a song for Portland entitled "My Portland":

The Portlandia season finale airs tonight at 10:00 on IFC!  Don't miss it!

Guest Post: American Idol Recap - Revealing The Top 13

Guest Blogger Daneil shares another recap of American Idol: 

The Judges chose three contestants of these six, Erika Van Pelt, Reed Grimm, Jen Hirsh, Jeremy Rosado, Brielle Von Hugel and DeAndre Brackinsick, to save.

I won’t usually write about results shows, but this was a big one. In this episode, the top 13 were revealed. The top 13 is made up of the 5 guys and 5 girls who America voted for. Then the judges choose six people, three guys and three girls, of the people of those who got eliminated to sing one more time in an effort to earn the last three spots, which are given by the judges. So let's get to it.

After the usual back and forth “Welcome to American Idol” stuff and a commercial break we get into the results with some guys first. Jeremy Rosado (who got an A the other night), Phillip Phillips (C+) and Chase Likens (A-) were called to the stage. We also got in house mentor Jimmy Iovine giving a brutal, (sometimes too harsh) but probably necessary dose of honesty. Even though I didn’t like Phillip the other night, though Jimmy loved it, he is clearly one of the more talented singers and I was hoping that he would make it. I like Chase but the guys are very talented this year and I’m not sure he’s as good as some of the others. And I hope I wasn’t the only one who thought that what Steven said to Chase mad absolutely no sense. Anyway, Ryan first told Jeremy that he didn’t make the cut and then told Phillip that he made it and Chase that he didn’t.

He then moved on to the girls, calling down Jessica Sanchez (B+), Hollie Cavanagh (A-), Brielle Von Hugel (A-), and Hallie Day (A-). I was hoping for them to all make it but Hallie, even though I knew that was unlikely. Interestingly Jimmy said that Jessica was in the “pole position.” Ryan then told Brielle that she didn’t make it and said the same to Hallie, sending Jessica and Hollie into the top 13.

Ryan went back to the guys, calling forward Adam Brock aka the man with the large black woman inside him (B-), Heejun Han (C-), and Joshua Ledet (A). Jimmy really trashed Heejun though, saying that this isn’t America’s comedian and that Heejun only had an ok voice. When Ryan asked him about the “American Comedian” comment Heejun brushed it off saying “who’s that?”, then turning to the camera and making a "Debbie Downer"-esc face. The guy is really really funny. I only really wanted Joshua to make it through but both Joshua and Heejun made it to the next round. Also, there was this one really awkward moment where Adam threw his head back on stage and laughed for no apparent reason and no one else in the whole studio laughed.

Ryan then called forward Shannon McGrane (A), Skylar Laine (A), Chelsea Sorrell (C), and Bailey Brown (B). Ryan first told Shannon that she made it through, and then also sent Skylar through to the next round. The other two headed back to the couch.

Ryan then called forward Reed Grimm (B-), Aaron Marcellus (B+), and Creighton Fraker (B). I was really hoping that only Reed made it. I really like his quirkiness, but sadly he didn't, and neither did Aaron or Creighton.

Next up, Ryan called forward the only four girls who hadn’t been called yet: Jen Hirsh (D+), Haley Johnsen (F), Erika Van Pelt (B+), and Elise Testone (B-). Four girls and only one spot open for a girl in America’s top 10. Not surprisingly, Elise was who filled the slot, which I think was probably the right decision by America.

Ryan then got around to the final four guys, Jermaine Jones (A), Colton Dixon (A), Eben Frankowitz (B+), and DeAndre Brackinsick (C-). This group (below) had my two favorite contestants in it, Colton and Eben, and I really wanted them to both make it. Jimmy said something very interesting about Eben, claiming that Eben was “a really talented kid” who at 15 was “not ready for prime time, not yet” He then went on to say “If he doesn’t make it, I’d like to see him come back but the way the rules work he can’t come back. They’ve got to change the rules.” DeAndre didn’t make it and after he embraced the other three we saw him and all his hair loop behind them, which got laughs. Ryan then continued saying to Colton “You are not” literally making me yell, “what is wrong with you America!?” Ryan then finished with “going to be disappointed tonight” and sent Colton to safety leaving Eben and Jermaine, the little guy and the big guy. Ideally, Heejun wouldn't be there, and they would both make it, but only one could make it. I liked watching Eben jokingly stand on his tip toes to try to compare to Jermaine height wise. However, then Ryan delivered the news that Eben did not make it and (spoiler) he will not be given a second chance by the judges L. I’m really disappointed about that and now I’m with Jimmy. “THEY’VE GOT TO CHANGE THE RULES.” Eben Frankowitz season 12?

Anyway the second chances. Here is who I would have chosen: For the guys - Eben, Reed and Jeremy And for the girls - Brielle, Baylie and Jen. But the judges chose Jen, Brielle, and Erika for the girls and Jeremy, DeAndre and Reed for the boys. Good Bye Eben. L Anyway, Eben or no Eben, let's get on to grading the people who get to sing again.

Jen Hirsh                                Oh Darling
She has a good voice and a good attitude, but this is her second really bad performance. She can’t do that and what she did the other night and get through. Sorry Jen. C-

Jeremy Rosado                      I Know You Won't
Jeremy put so much emotion into this, it was truly touching as was seeing his mom crying in the audience. He has a wonderful, pure voice. At the end, the emotion got the best of him and he started crying, but that was part of what made it great. J-Lo was crying too. Anyway, I gotta believe that gave Jeremy a spot in the top 13. A

Brielle Von Hugel                  Someone Like You
Great song but didn’t Jimmy just say that he thought Adele songs were super hard? Anyway, this wasn’t great. I felt her emotion too but it didn’t help her voice the way it did with Jeremy. It had some ok moments but overall I don’t think this helped her chances too much. You're better then this Brielle! Also congrats to Steven who gave a legit critique. C+

DeAndre Brackensick           Georgia On My Mind
This is DeAndre’s potential and it was very good. Notice how he didn’t sing everything high like he did the other night and that it was miles better just like I said. He actually has great tone and I don’t know why he feels like he always has to go high. Anyway, he showed what he could do here and I liked it. A-

Erika Van Pelt                                    Edge Of Glory
Interesting song choice. This was good but it was actually a little boring. And this is a Lady Gaga song we’re talking about. It was pretty good though. Anyway, it was by far the best one out of the girls who sang tonight. Also, them showing Eben in the middle of the song only made me more nervous about the last available spot that Eben could have gotten. B+

Reed Grimm                           Use Me
Not Eben! L But I like Reed. He is really talented and likeable. He has a fantastic voice. I love his attitude and how outgoing he is. How he had to take his shirt off before he sang. He was fantastic. He is a great performer. He can dance and he can really sing. He just entertains. This was fantastic. I was sure he had locked up his spot. This also was our first A+ of the season. A+

I was sure that the results would be Erika, Jeremy and Reed making it through. Sure enough, Erika was given the go as was Jeremy, who knelt down sobbing with emotion when J-Lo told him he had made it, and when Ryan asked if he wanted to go hug J-Lo, he said passionately, “I do”. Then… DeAndre. I like DeAndre, but over Reed??? Really? Sorry Reed. You got robbed. Also, Reed seemed genuinely happy for DeAndre when his name was called. You’re a good guy Reed Grimm. You’ve got a bright future. You too Eben!

Anyway congrats to the top 13 (top row left to right) Ellise Testone, Phillip Phillips, Jermaine Jones, Erika Van Pelt, Jeremy Rosado, (middle row) Joshua Ledet, Heejun Han, Shannon McGrane, DeAndre Brackensick, Skylar Laine, (bottom row) Colton Dixon, Hollie Cavanagh, and Jessica Sanchez.

March 8, 2012

'Figure It Out' Returns to TV!

It was announced yesterday that the popular 1990's Nickelodeon game show Figure It Out will be revived by Nickelodeon with 40 new episodes expected to air later this year.  Figure It Out was one of my favorite shows growing up, and I am excited that the next generation of kids will get to enjoy this show. 

For those of you who didn't grow up on 90's Nick, Figure It Out was a game show hosted by Olympic gold medalist Summer Sanders.  A kid would come on the show with a special "talent" (usually not that special), and a panel of celebrities would ask "Yes or No" questions to figure it what it was.  The celebrities usually consisted of Nickelodeon stars, such as Lori Beth Denberg, Danny Temberelli, Amanda Bynes, and current SNL star Kenan Thomson (see picture).  If the panelists are having trouble guessing, physical clues would appear to help them along.  There was also a "Secret Slime Action", usually something very common, that if the panelist did, they would be slimed (again, see picture).

It has not been announced yet if Summer Sanders will return as host, but according to her blog, she is excited for the return and would be happy to host if asked.  No word yet on who the panelists will be, but I imagine they would include the current Nickelodeon stars and not the old panelists of my day.  We'll be sure to post an update as this story unfolds!

UPDATE: According to this article, Summer Sanders will not be returning to host.  The show will be hosted by Jeff Sutphen, who previously hosted the 2009 Nickelodeon game show BrainSurge.

Here's a classic episode featuring celebrity panelists Lori Beth Dengerg (All That), Kenan Thomson (All That, Kenan & Kel, now on SNL), Arjay Smith (The Journey of Allen Strange), and Mike O'Malley (Global Guts, now on Glee as Kurt's dad).  The kid's special talent is that he's a Rodeo Sheep Riding Champion.

Oh childhood.  I miss you so.

March 7, 2012

Guest Post: American Idol Recap - Girls Top 12

Here's another American Idol Recap from Guest Blogger Daniel!

Skylar Laine’s energy, folksy charm, and powerful voice made her a stand out last night

Last night on American Idol the top 12 girls performed after a good showing by the top 13 guys the other night.

Chelsea Sorrell                      Cowboy Casanova
She is cute and she is very country. There’s the good. The bad? Her performance was plain boring. She didn’t really do anything interesting. She didn’t even have one of those solid, well-sung but unoriginal performances that we see so often (see Baillie Brown). This was just not at all interesting. Oh, but there are a few more good things, they just don’t have to do with her singing. THE JUDGES WERE HONEST. Or at least sorta. I applaud them because the other night they just loved everything the guys did and over exaggerated their praise for every song the guys sung. Also happy to see that Idol is still doing those backstage interviews they started last season. And in this interview I really admired Chelsea’s positive attitude after not great comments from the judges. C

Erika Van Pelt                                    What About Love
Uggg. Her. I literally can't believe she’s made it this far. I would not have put her through the audition, when she sang a pathetic “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow."  She didn’t impress me at all in Hollywood, so I was all set to hate her. When I heard she chose “What About Love” I thought “Great song, but will she be able to sing it?” and to her credit she did a good job. Now let me be clear, I still think she stole a top 24 spot from Ariel Sprague and various other more deserving girls, but this was actually pretty good. Also congrats to the J-Lo and Randy who made a real critique yet again! B+

Jen Hirsh                                One And Only One
I know from Hollywood week that she is talented, but quite frankly this performance was a bit of a mess. At times her voice sounded a little weak and once or twice it sounded like it was on the verge of cracking. I didn’t like it at all. However, as I said before, I know Jen has talent and I hope she makes it to the next round. If she isn’t voted in, I think the judges might save her, depending on who else makes it and doesn’t make it. D+

Brielle Von Hugel                  Sittin’ On The Dock Of The Bay
I remember her from last season, and I liked her. I was glad to see her come back, but this year we are getting a lot of her mom, who is super annoying. Anyway, Brielle did a really great job I thought. Great, gutsy song choice. I liked the way she started with the guys on the stage. That said, at the beginning it sounded like the key might have been too low for her. But she pulled it together and earned our first ‘A’ of the night. Interesting that the guys first ‘A’ also came from the 4th singer of the night, Colton. Oh and I like her personality from her bubbly backstage interview to her telling America what her numbers were. A-

Hallie Day                               Feelin’ Good
I wanted to hate her because she has no personality. She is so boring. Really boring. That said she has a good voice and she sang well. While a few notes were kinda flat, overall she was good. She should make it to the next round, however, if she actually wants to make it, let alone win, she has to be at least relatively interesting as a person. Another problem: her facial expressions are so wooden. At times she seemed almost Mitt Romney-like in her blandness. Almost.  It wasn’t THAT bad. And like I said, she sang generally well. Also Randy said something about Lana Del Rey, right? It would certainly seem that her atrocious SNL appearance has certainly made her famous. Anyway Hallie. Um. A-

Skylar Laine                           Stay With Me *Best Performance Of The Night*
Take notes Chelsea Sorrell. Skylar did what you were aiming for. Wow. She went out there with energy and flair. She worked the stage tremendously and she showed off her SUPER powerful voice. Nothing else really to say now. She just nailed it. A

Baylie Brown                         Amaze
I enjoyed it. There was nothing particularly outstanding about her performance but it was solid and very pleasant. She had some good moments. And, as the judges said, she did look gorgeous. And wait? Did Steven Tyler just make a critique? B

Hollie Cavanaugh                  Reflection
Aww. Cute Dog! Anyway Hollie sang very well. It started off a little slow but when she got into it she really got into it. Her song choice really allowed her to show her at her best during the chorus. She clearly has talent, which, as I said before, is all we are really looking for at this stage. And she’s really cute! I loved how she let her hair down backstage. Sorry, I got lost in her adorableness. I totally agree with Randy: it wasn’t perfect, but the good moments were really great. I’ll want to keep an eye on her. A-

Haley Johnsen                                   Sweet Dreams *Worst Performance Of The Night*
Oh my God. This was truly terrible, verging on scary. C’mon! That was awful.
Don’t make me fail you Haley. I like you, I really do. I don’t wanna do this. How should I say this? Ah here, Randy just said exactly what I was thinking. It was a bit of a nightmare instead of a dream. God Bless you Randy Jackson for bringing a dose a reality to the judges panel. Anyway, I will end on a good note. As I said before, she seems like a really sweet girl. With that… F

Shannon McGrane                Go Light Your World
I really like her. She’s been one of my favorites since the auditions. I also feel like I can relate to her with the whole sports-homework balance thing. Also, she’s really pretty. They did some fun banter with her dad and Steven (of course). I was expecting big things from Shannon, and she did not disappoint. Her unconventional song choice perfectly showcased her big, beautiful voice. Also, loved her backstage reaction. A

Jessica Sanchez                      Love You I Do
Another one who seems really sweet. I liked it. That said, I wasn’t as impressed as the judges seemed to be. Don’t get me wrong, she has a great voice and she sang really well but I think the judges exaggerated a little. The only problem I had was the beginning seemed a bit off. I could tell that she had been sick recently or was getting sick. Then backstage, we learn she was sick earlier in the week! B+

Elise Testone                         One And Only One
Oh no! They doubled up on songs. That is never good. I’m not gonna blame Alice, she might have chosen the song first and Jen might have copied her. Either way, Jen didn’t do too well so its not really a bad thing. I like Elise and especially considering she was singing last I was expecting big things. Was it good? Yes. But I was a bit disappointed. At times she had too much rasp and at times she seemed out of breath. Either way, I know that she’s talented, even if this wasn’t her best performance and she seems really nice. I liked her room service flowers. Anyway, looking forward to next time Elise, because I think there will be a next time, and I think you are capable of much more than what you showed last night. B-