Saturday, January 17, 2009

First Impressions: Friday Night Lights 3.x

The Cast of Friday Night Lights

Someone once said absence makes the heart grow fonder, but I’m guessing whoever said that didn’t have to wait for almost a year for new a new episode of Friday Night Lights. After a couple months without a trip to Dillon, fonder became frustrated quickly. And to add insult to injury, there was the fact that some people got to see the premiere four months ago thanks to DirecTV.

But it was well worth the wait even if there were a few “huh, did I miss something?” moments like Mrs. Taylor is the new principle? Seriously? Lyla and Saresen have been in the same grade the whole time making Lyla a Varsity cheerleader as a sophomore? And then there were the glossed over reveals like Lyla dumping Jesus for Riggins? And the completely ignored like Street’s miracle baby.

But really none of that bothered me because I was distracted by all the goodness that started with opening unmistakable earthly guitar licks (FNL is the best scored show ever in the history of television) and scenes like the Riggins brothers powwow in a strip club and subsequent proposal, Momma Smash, Landry at the Collette house, Tyra telling off the new guidance teacher (since when was it so hard to get into a State college: at one point Ohio State University had a 100% acceptance rate), the status of Tyra and Landry’s relationship, and surely I am forgetting something else.

The show’s strength is how emotions can change on a dime which was best on display during the racquetball scene that starts off as whimsically enough with Smash mentioning it is the whitest sport ever created (which I can attest to as I have an intramural racquetball championship under my belt), but at a drop of a dime Coach lays into Smash for giving up (Mrs. Taylor had her own scene with Tyra earlier which parallels each struggle to get out of Dillon).

Verdict: Last year Friday Night Lights ended the season number one of my Best Television Shows of 2007-08 list and after one episode it is hard to think of any show that will come close to knocking the show off its pedestal. You can and should catch Friday Night Lights at 9:00 on Fridays. You can also stream episodes at or download Friday Night Nights on iTunes or Amazon Video on Demand (see below). And you can still get the first two seasons for dirt cheap.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Lyrics Quiz: Best Songs of 1999

Every since I decided that the January Lyrics Quiz was going to be the ten anniversary o my best of that year list I have dreaded the 1999 list because it is pretty embarrassing as someone that is called a musical snob. In my defense, 1999 was the worst year in music ever in the history of the world. In fact a couple months ago when I did my Guilty Pleasures Lyrics Quiz, I could have well been a 1999-only list. Basically everything was teen pop, Latin pop, and frat rap-rock. But for prosperity sake, here is the list I created back in 1999. As always leave your guesses, both artist and song title, in the comment section or e-mail me. If you are correct I will un-bold the lyric. Please keep in mind the lyrics quiz is for entertainment purposes only so please only use your own meandering mind to guess them. Now onto the lyric quiz:

1. Hormones pumping at the speed of light but that don’t mean it’s got to be tonight, baby, baby, baby. (Genie in a Bottle - Christina Aguilera; guessed by Rebekah)
2. Just close your eyes and I’ll take you there. This place is warm without a care. We’ll take a swim in the deep blue sea. I go to leave but you reach for me. (Someday - Sugar Ray; guessed by Rebekah)
3. Since the last time you heard from me I lost some friends, well, (expletive deleted), me and (Name Deleted), we dipping again. (Still D.R.E. - Dr. Dre featuring Snoop Dogg; guessed by Angie)
4. Don’t come hanging around my door. I don’t wanna see your face no more. I don’t need your war machines. I don’t need your ghetto scenes. (American Woman - Lenny Kravitz; guessed by Rebekah)
5. It’s undeniable that we should be together. Unbelievable how I used to say that I’d fall never. (Back at One - Brian McKnight; guessed by Rebekah)
6. Man it’s a hot one, like seven inches from the midday sun. (Smooth - Santana featuring Rob Thomas; guessed by Rebekah)
7. She was looking kind of dumb with finger and her thumb in a shape of an “L” on her forehead. (All Star - Smash Mouth; guessed by Rebekah)
8. Getting back to my MC status, other willie that I kick make the other (expletive deleted) maddest. Moving through your town and situation. Shorty thought she subtle but she was really was blatant. (Vivrant Thing - Q-Tip; guessed by Big Wood)
9. Fell deep in love but now we ain’t speaking. Michael J. Fox was Alex P. Keaton. (Summer Girls - LFO; guessed by Angie)
10. You can buy your hair if it won’t grow. You fix your nose if he says so. You can buy all the make-up that man can make. (Unpretty - TLC; guessed by Angie)
11. We stay all day getting sober just hiding from daylight, watching TV. We just look a lot better in the blue light. You know I got to get out. (Hangin' Around - Counting Crows; guessed by Angie)
12. That was about the time she walked away from me. Nobody likes you when you’re 23. (What's My Age Again? - Blink-182; guessed by Rebekah)
13. Let’s go see the stars, the Milky Way or even Mars. Where they’d just be ours. (Fly Away - Lenny Kravitz; guessed by Angie)
14. We knew from the start that things fall apart. Intenses shatter, she’s like that (expletive deleted) don’t matter when I get home get at her.
15. It has to somewhere, it has to start sometime. What better place than here, what better time now? All (expletive deleted), can’t stop us now. (Guerilla Radio - Rage Against the Machine; guessed by Big Wood)
16. I can’t figure out which Spice Girl I wanna impregnate. (My Name Is - Eminem; guessed by Angie)
17. Lift up your open hand. Strike up the band and make the fireflies dance, silver moon sparkling. (Kiss Me - Sixpence None the Richer; guessed by Rebekah)
18. It’s on me, if you’re married then get a divorce. (Holla Holla - Ja Rule; guessed by Big Wood)
19. Don’t love the life you kill? The priest is on the phone, you father hit the wall, your mom disowned you. (Slide - The Goo Goo Dolls; guessed by Rebekah)
20. Sometime I feel that I am drunk behind the wheel, the wheel of possibility, however it may roll. (Out of My Head - Fastball; guessed by Angie)
21. I don’t know when I got bitter but love is surely better when it’s gone. (You Wanted More - Tonic; guessed by Angie)
22. Soon I spend every dollar. You became my habit. Other brother’s vive was smoke, mine was carrots.
23. So what can I do I really thank you my lord? To me flirting is just like a sport. (Mambo No. 5 - Lou Bega; guessed by Angie)
24. Cruising in his Pinto he see homies as he pass but if he looks twice they’re gonna kick his lily (expletive deleted). (Pretty Fly (For a White Guy) - The Offspring; guessed by Angie)
25. She wanna pillow fight in the middle of the night. She wanna drive the Benz with five of her friends. (Heartbreaker - Mariah Carey featuring Jay-Z; guessed by Big Wood)

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Chatting with John Lehr part 2 and 3

I was going to post the parts of my interview with John Lehr yesterday that pertained to 10 Items or Less yesterday but I forgot how cumbersome it is it download videos, edit them, then upload to YouTube. There is a lesson to you kiddies out there, do not procrastinate. But it does be transcribing it. Without further ado, here are parts to and three of my interview with Lehr. And you can check out part one here: Chatting with John Lehr.

John Lehr Interview part 2

John Lehr Interview part 3

Those hoping for our discussion of I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here are going to have to wait a little longer. But it is worth it.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Chatting with John Lehr

Tonight is the second episode of the season for Ten Items or Less on TBS at 11:00 and last week I had the pleasure to interview its star John Lehr. I inadvertently almost nabbed a second interview that night as I passed Rajon Rondo on my way out from interviewing John as they were staying at the same hotel, but since the Celtics are on such a bad streak, I decided not to ask for one.

For as for the guy I sit down with, Lehr was very personable even though I was last on his dais and my poor interviewing skills (you will notice despite the lengthy introduction, the one think I left out was his actual name). We chatted for about forty minutes (about ten over my limit), thirty of which I got on camera, sorry, you don’t get to here our talk on stupid pet tricks. I cut the interview into four parts with the first below.

John Lehr Interview part 1

Look out later for the final segments later including his (very hilarious and candid) thoughts on his stint as the host of I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! Until then, check out Chatting with John Lehr parts 2 and 3.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Oh, I'm a Terrorist?


As someone who dislikes spoilers, it is hard to understand why the people behind Traitor would name it as such. It is easy to assume that with that name in big bold lettering above a picture of Don Cheadle (Traffic) that he would be playing a traitor. Yet for the first third of the two hour film it is ambiguous who the title refers to and you just wait for Cheadle to show his hand even though early in the film he is imprisoned for terrorist act.

His arrest raises the eyebrow of the FBI, Guy Pierce (Memento) in particular. Playing the bad cop to Pierce’s good is Neil McDonough who is always a solid go to humongous tool even if he is on the right side of the law in this movie, but he does get the best lines. Also entangled in the storyline, and the keeper of who is the traitor, is Jeff Daniels (Dumb and Dumber).

There is a big plot twist in the second third of the movie, but it has been done numerous times before so it shouldn’t be that shocking as once the scene begins, it isn’t hard to see what’s coming. But Cheadle pulls another twist later that more than makes up for it. With that said, and the spoilerish title aside, Traitor is a solid film that you can tell was well research and as you can tell by the cast, it is well acted with all the actors bringing their A-game. So when you watch it, just forget the title and enjoy the popcorn.

Traitor gets a Terror Alert Level: High [ORANGE] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Feed Your iPod vol. XXV: I Got Mine

Naturally in this fractured musical era there are plenty of great songs that slip through the cracks many of which I hope I brought to your attention on my 100 Best Songs of 2008. One group that landed two songs in the top thirty (as well as a top ten album) was the Black Keys. They didn’t get there placement solely because they are an Akron based group and I may have taught the orientation class of one of the members, but because they are that good. They get a lot of comparisons to The White Stripes because of the guitar and drum only competition, but musically they are better because of a much better drummer. And they were added by having Danger Mouse release their latest album, the first outsider they ever let in, to add some chattiness to the already high musical IQ. Strange Times may have ranked higher on my list, but since I have already highlighted the laser-tag inspired video a couple times, here is I Got Mine, both of which are worthy of space on your iPod.

I Got Mine - The Black Keys The Black Keys - Attack & Release - I Got Mine