Category Archives: Entertainment

The Best thing to come from True Detective Season 2

Let me start by saying that I’ve legitimately enjoyed True Detective‘s second season. It’s kind of a moot point because I’ll watch anything with Rachel McAdams. I think we always knew this second season wasn’t going to be as good as the first, but it’s the usual flat-circle bullcrap when our human inability to perceive the fourth dimension of time has us sticking with a bad show because it might get better, and saying things like, “Season 1 started slow too.”

It hasn’t gotten better. It’s been slow, and mostly boring. Watching Vince Vaughn on Jimmy Fallon after 6 episodes of True D reminds you how neutered his personality is here.  Season 2 makes you miss Rust and Marty. One was smart, and the other was steady. Rust relapsed into drugs like it was the second coming of Christ, and Marty had an inexplicable knack for philandering in areas that should have been well beyond his service coverage. It’s sad that they’re not around anymore, but aren’t they always around, because now is happening at the same time as then? Rust always knew. He was smart. Marty’s just finding out, and it rocks him to his steady core.

Advertisements

Breaking Down the 80s – “Africa” Music Video by Toto

This is a bit of a narrative journey, but stay with me. It pays off IN SPADES! A couple days ago, I heard the song Africa while driving with my girlfriend. After I bored her with stories about the song’s greatness, I happenchanced upon this interview with the song’s writer. In that article, I watched music video, and I don’t mind telling you, it’s a masterpiece. So much goodness here:

0:01 – We fade in, spinning globe and a slow, percussive build. You know you’re in for something special. Wikipedia tells me that this video was directed by someone named Steve Barron (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!!), but don’t be confused, this is some Terrance Malick imagery shit right here. Hope you’re paying attention.

Your Hero

0:21 – You’re hero is an obvious lover of knowledge. And is that a kerchief fashionably slung around his neck like a blue-collar ascot? You’re in. To recap, this is going to be a mind-bending safari thrill ride, and this guy’s got the keys to the jalopy. We’re all in.

Bespectacled Beauty

0:58 – Beautiful and bespectacled, our lady of the video aims a sultry gaze. At what, we can’t be certain. Is it the bearded peruser of books that’s captured her interest? Perhaps it’s dreams of the dark continent that is the song’s title? And maybe she’s just a lusty librarian—maybe a student, but her eyes betray more confidence than curiosity—feeling the emotions we feel as fans after getting our first look at Toto’s drummer, bell-shaker and pianist. She has to be a librarian, right? Turned on by that kind of musical acumen and range? Save the simple acoustic guitar on the quad for the students.

Shrunk Band

1:10 – An exhilarating drum bridge launches us into the chorus where, what in sweet 80’s heaven is going on? It appears that Toto is using the magic of film to shrink themselves down on some books about The Birthplace of Humanity. Hopefully this gets explained.

All The Books

1:21 – Are these all the books you have about Africa!? I’m questing with a torn piece of parchment that I have somehow fantastically tracked back to this very library! Give me more books about Africa! I’m questing!

Stranger Lurks

1:50 – A stranger lurks. Tension builds.

2:00 – “Sure as Kilimanjaro rises like Olympus above the Serengeti” is some all-time lyrical genius.

Mustache Singer

2:20 – Not in a million years would I have imagined that mustache was the thing singing this chorus. Just, wow.

Goofy Uncle

2:32 – Is there any way that guy could be more dressed like your goofy uncle? Or how about that underachieving cousin of yours in the background? Those are rockstars, people.

Wristbands Piano

2:34 – Wristbands on a pianist. It’s practical. I get it. When Big Data finally brings advanced metrics to ivory tickling, you’ll see a correlation between wristbands worn and the lower numbers of keys missed. Also, that pianist wrote this song. Don’t judge an innovator.

Book Search

2:39 – These can’t be ALL the books you have about Africa, can it? Anything more obviously titled? Maybe hiding under a mystically miniaturized rock band?

Africa Book

3:10 – Yahtzee!!! And then, well, I won’t lie to you guys, things move quickly and get a little confusing…

Spear

….A spear crashes into the wall…

Glasses Ground

…the sexy librarian drops her glasses and is never seen again, and you’d feel pretty lost about what it all means except that our hero shows us the exact emotion to feel  about all this.

Emotion Face

A thousand words in that thousand-yard stare right there. Fear and excitement, he thrills at the unfolding of events, and thanks to him,  you feel all these things too.

Missing Page

3:32 – Ant then the book falls open. That’s it. The end of the rainbow. What’s it all mean? I’d like to think that our hero is putting together the very story of the legendary hunter who threw an opportune spear into an apparently arid and thus super-flammable library. But he wasn’t ready to reveal himself. Like the Africa of 1982 itself, there’s a romance to the unsolved mystery here. It’s best that way. Even when the promise of closure goes up in flames…

Burning Missing Piece

…Isn’t it best this way? You tell me, does this look like a guy who is unsatisfied with the way his adventure ended?

Lounge Book

Not at all. He had his great African walkabout, and while he’ll bask in this deep, life-altering moment a little while longer, he needs to get back to the states to raise his 13-year-old son, Zach Galifianakis, who’s in talks right now about fleshing this out in a movie called Kingdom of Desire: The Toto Story.

“Hurry, boy. It’s waiting there for you.”

Crying out in the night,
Dusty “Wild Dog” Riedesel

Controversial Opinion: Music Sucks!

In the audible diet of life, music is dessert. Sure you can live on dessert. There’s caloric value in it just like there are ideas in music, but the lean protein of information and experience is rarely there in the abundance needed for intellectual growth. The musical sugar toys with people’s mental glycogen to lift them up and down, addicting them. Maybe booze is a better analogy. How many people drink their coffee and listen to c-span or talk radio on their way to work, and then jam out to a brain-unplugging tune on their way to a post-work beer?

Never in the history of man have people had access to such an audible buffet. You could be reading The Sound and the Fury on your morning commute instead of listening to T-Swift shaking it off for the 37th time. And yet most people I know keep going to the chocolate fountain instead of the carvery. Your brain deserves better.

On a budget? Listen to podcasts. Ideally something that gives you counter-intuitive ways to look at the world. Comedians like Marc Maron and Pete Holmes have famous and interesting guests and have a habit of asking questions successful habits, beliefs about God, and the double-edge of relationships. You know what makes the Dos-Equis guy so interesting? Life experience. And you can be learning the pivotal life experiences of some of the world’s most interesting people while your pounding the treadmill to atone for last night’s Oreo’s.

Now, I like music. I listen to it while I write (Blues Traveler is playing right now), and I listen to it while I work out. Those are times I like to be a little raw and emotional and just let myself be manipulated by it. I love the way it controls the tone of movies and TV. Like sugar, the world would be bland without it. But it’s the opportunity cost of playing to our emotions instead of our minds that’s unsettling.

This thought came to me upon noticing a wild snapback in my mental dialogue in the car. I was listening to Slacker Radio (my first mistake), and “Colorblind” by Counting Crows came on. I found myself reminiscing on something I wrote once: “I thought we made minutes small to trick ourselves into thinking that life is long. But I think the real trick is that the minutia of time was built in cycles. Hours, days, weeks and seasons repeating in perpetuity so that the future always looks like a cul-de-sac instead of a dead end.” Only minutes later, “Semi-Charmed Life” by Third Eye Blind was on, and I was thinking about the time me and three high-school buddies jammed out on air instruments in a Toyota Corolla. With no one around, the memory had me smiling ear-to-ear.

I like going to both of those thought spaces. I just don’t like the concept of something external shoving me there, commandeering my personal mental agency. I’d rather maintain an even emotional keel while learning about the (possibly crackpot) ideas of Deepak Chopra on the “reality sandwich” of material, quantum, and virtual aspects of the universe. That stuff kills at cocktail parties.

One last thing about music. Here’s the first Google image of the artists that are in the top 5 at Billboard right now.

Teenage girls love pure sugar.

DR

Don-O-Mite trailer — MAD MEN meets Blaxploitation

Donomite_Poster

Every now and then, the Internet does exactly what it was meant to do. This is one of those times. The final season of Mad Men is debuting this Sunday. Frankly, it’s the best written show I’ve ever watched, and I’m happy spank anyone who disagress like a 1950’s stepchild.

That said, if there’s ever been something recognizably missing in the show, it’s relation to the world-dominating Marvel Comics movie franchise. If there’s two things missing, it’s the world-dominating Marvel Comics movie franchise and black people. The gaping holes left by the absence of black men (and women) have been satirically and satisfactorily filled thanks to the Internet harkening back to the blaxploitation of the era Mad Men inhabits.

By the way, this is incredibly well done. Hat’s off to Leroy& Clarkson.

How I Met Your Mother Ends with a Perfect Non-Finale

The Series Finale of How I Met Your Mother is over. A lot of people are pissed:

And that’s funny. Most people were just haters. “Haters, would you just!…okay!?” The predominant gripe has been that this finale made the show all about Ted and Robin, that it should have been titled something like How I Met The Woman I Want To Be With Now That Your Mother Is Dead. While catchy, that’s wrong. This was a great finale because it stayed true to itself, just like all the characters did, especially Ted Mosby.

Stephen King compares the job of writer to that of an archaeologist. To summarize his viewpoint, a writer is trying to bring a preformed thing from obscurity to public attention. The analogy works even better from the vantage point of the consumer. An archaeological artifact is a small window into an entirely different time and civilization. It’s a fragment of a much larger world, and with few exceptions, that’s exactly the way stories let us look into their imaginative worlds.

208 episodes is a lot of time to spend with characters, but it all adds up to less than four days of real time. If you want this show to be true to real life, that’s an important fact to remember. A lot of life happens in these unwatched margins. Does it seem weird to you that the kids aren’t emotionally enraptured by how Ted met their mother? They’re teenagers who have been with Ted their whole life. They’ve heard the stories. They’ve seen him living alone, and they’re not shocked about the big reveal that their mother is dead. We’re all egocentric, so confusing the show and the story is simple, but the show was called How I Met Your Mother, not How I Met The Mother of My Children. We were always the show’s audience, but we were never the story’s audience. After waiting for 9 years, the word “Your” ended up being way more important than the word “Mother”.

Completion is the biggest fallacy pitched in most finales. Even the tightly-packaged Breaking Bad finale left us with some unanswered questions (What happens to Jesse? Did Hule ever leave that hotel room? Will Walt Jr. ever enjoy breakfast again?), and that was a show that told us it was a completed story. HIMYM was almost finished after a few seasons, revived, then dragged out all the way to season nine. It never had the luxury of being complete. Instead, the writers had to keep brushing away more dirt from the artifact. They had to keep showing you more and more of the fantasy world that these New Yorkers encompassed. And it was a fantasy, Barney alone proves that.

In the end, Ted probably did marry Robin (“The only way either of you are having sex with her is if you marry her.”) But the story we were actually being told was of the emotionally resilient Ted Mosby. Maybe we wished his life was even more fantasy because the real stuff isn’t as fun. We watched him fail. A lot. We watched him struggle to find himself by looking for completion in others. But we mostly just watched him keep on going. That’s what real people have to do. And in the final moments of the show, they took us back to the show’s one prevailing sentiment, the undying romanticism of a human soul (forever enshrined for Ted by a blue French horn). And honestly, to give that romanticism a complete finale would have been the biggest betrayal of the show’s true star.

“Love doesn’t make sense. You can’t logic your way into or out of it. Love is totally nonsensical. But we have to keep doing it, or else we’re lost and love is dead and humanity should just pack it in.” – Ted Evelyn Mosby

Kanye and Kimmel Krush Twitter Beef, A Sad Day For All Of Us Regular People

I just posted a piece about the Kanye/Kimmel reconciliation on PolicyMic. The one thing that I didn’t get into is why I was so extremely disappointed that this beef didn’t get deeper.

Is there any profession that’s worse to get into a Twitter beef with than a rapper? Their whole profession is built upon words and wit, and they usually try to be self-aggrandizing which includes putting down their rivals. They’re trained on being quick with their quips and comebacks, and the thing about Twitter is that it actually takes off the restrictor plate because nothing needs to rhyme!

The only worse profession to Twitter beef with is a comedian. You’ll never be able to make more fun of the comedian than he is able to of himself. What are you going to say to Kimmel? That he’s fat? Stupid? Unathletic? Unpopular? Dresses funny? I wouldn’t know where to start, but I can almost guarantee he’s said all those things about himself. Even when they were making up last night, Kimmel said, “I was always getting beat up in high school.” These guys are egotistical Teflon. Maybe the only thing that could stick is to tell them they aren’t funny or that they’re unoriginal. But you’ll probably get a response like, “Don’t you dare compare me to Dane Cook!”

Anyway, check out the video and article here. I’m so depressed that this didn’t become a bigger feud.

Dreaming of the next interracial Twitter beef,
Dusty “I’m not talking about porn” Riedesel

The 6 Essential Break Up Songs From Guys Who Know Break Ups

One day, you might go through a break up. Make a mental note that this post is here to help you get through it.

Miley’s a real person.

Dusty: How do you judge the quality of a break-up? How grandly disastrous the split was? How great the relationship itself was? Not many people sit around saying, “Now that was a hell of a break up.” Everyone always focuses on what it was before the ending. And I’m no different. This tune, voiced gloriously by America’s slutty best friend, Miley Cyrus, showcases all the worst emotions of a trip to splitsville. When you think you’re actually on target with that magic, that space between, that indescribable something that makes two out of six billion feel as if there is a God and a plan and a purpose for everything that’s ever happened to lead you to this single existing counterpoint of your soul…well, when that goes to shit, you play this tune and feel sad. And somehow you feel better because Miley’s as sad as you are. I’ll just say this, you should feel pretty good if this song makes you feel all of those things, because no matter how grandly disastrous the split was, you know you were in love. And it was probably awesome.

PS. Bob Dylan wrote this. Never forget, Bob Dylan wrote every hit song ever recorded.

Your Hair is….

Tommy: Here’s the premise. Guy sees a note. He reads it over and again. He doesn’t comprehend anything in said note (because its not addressed to him). But he does recognize who signed it “I will love you always and forever.” Pause. Let that sink in. DAGGERRRRRRR! She’s cheating on him!

As guys, we know that much like dogs pee on things to mark their territory, a woman’s hair gets left everywhere. Shower, your clothes, pillows, etc etc etc. When Chris Carraba wines “Your hair is everywhere,” I think we can all relate.

Just let the bottle of Beast take you home.

Endings, right?

Dusty: I wrote a little bit about rebirth and hope being woven into the fabric of creation this weekend. Sunrise. New Year’s. Spring. Monday. Beginnings happen on a routine basis, but that means ends happen too, and people hate endings. I mean, how many damn sequels make up the summer blockbuster schedule? Better Call Saul is going to jump in to fill the Breaking Bad void. Hell, Joey was a real show. We always want more. We need continuity. But sometimes, you just have to accept that it’s done. Date her friend or her sister or whatever you need to do to feel whole, but it won’t be the same. Frankly, looking for continuity after a break-up is a fool’s game. Maybe you find someone like that person who dumped you, but if that’s what you’re looking for, then everything she does will be noticeably tainted by the ex’s character traits. It’s over when it’s over.

Yeah, it’s over.
Yeah, it’s over.

F*#% It, AmIRight?

Tommy: Judging by the 4.2 million views on YouTube people either really love coping with break ups to this song, or really just think its such a bad song that its actually good.

Every one deals with break ups a little differently. Eamon, this man believes in a clean cut. “She gone” if you will. I mean, he throws an entire NY style pizza off of the table in the video! Oh the angst!

We deliver the edited version here on WBB, because Moms may read this, but I encourage you to look up the unedited version – some of the lines are a real hoot.

I’m not ashamed to admit that I know every lyric to this song.  I just can’t figure out why he was a one-hit(ish) wonder?!

Am I the only one who think Eamon looks like a Hispanic Drake?

I need a Whitesnake jean jacket.

 

Dusty: ANTHEM! For my money, no song will ever touch Whitesnake’s ballad of solitude. It’s almost not about breaking up at all because it’s so convinced of its lonely place in this world. Like being in a relationship was a nice cruise in the Bahamas and it’s time to get back to work in your Carolina cubicle. But that’s not quite right. This song makes you feel cool to be alone again, a wayward soul untamable by modern expectations of domesticity. You want me to enjoy a nice dinner and conversation with your parents? I’d rather ride around in a classic muscle car with a tacky suit and unkempt hair until I meet a wry broad with an uncertain amount of sexual morality. Guess what, America? I’m a lone wolf, and I’m hungry.

Ok, Ok, I’m still and Emo Kid

Tommy:  Yep, I was an Emo Kid from 10th grade through college. I have pictures of the calico hair and girl jeans to prove it. Sometimes that overly sensitive, musical part of me resurfaces in this blog and I bring you songs like “Letdown” by This Providence. If you couldn’t see the video, you might wonder: A) Is this a guy or girl singing? B) If said singer is a guy, how tight are his skinny jeans for him to sing that high pitch? Regardless, after any break up, we all feel like a letdown in some respect. In this case, you’re a letdown and all your friends feel the same. Oh and, she never loved you anyway and she never will.