Saturday, August 25, 2012

Previewing The Incredible Dr. Pol 2.x

The Incredible Dr. Pol

I am a changed man. I am not sure if it is for the better or worse, but changed nonetheless. I am changed because I have seen things I cannot unsee and both were seen on the season premiere of The Incredible Dr. Pol. First up is the hoof first birth of a cow. The other is a horse getting castrated. Both very graphic and neither involved the camera cutting away. You see everything, and by everything, I mean everything. You have been warned.

Some less graphic patients Dr. Pol and his team (including his wife, the office manager, and son, another budding veterinarian) see this season include a dog who literally eats his owner’s and then gets the spiral notebook stuck in his gums, a rabbit with a bloody ear, a hairless Holstein calf, and many more. The guy does have 19,000 patients across rural Michigan and routinely puts in fourteen hours a day. And sometimes he even has to duck a tornado while treating his patients like in tonight’s premiere.

The Incredible Dr. Pol airs Saturdays at 10:00 on Nat Geo Wild. And if you cannot wait to see a horse get castrated, you can watch the clip over at

Friday, August 24, 2012

Around the Tubes - 8/24/12

I have gotten a plethora of cool press releases have been flooding my inbox recently that you may find interesting. This post will include blurbs on NBC, Kattpacalypse, Alphas, Switched at Birth, Sons of Anarchy, a blind judo champion, Ball Up Streetball, the Screen Actors Guild, and You've Got a Friend.

- We are less than a month away from the strt of the fall television season and you can get you sneak peak at the upcoming NBC shows right now with the 2012 Primetime Preview hosted by star of Go On Matthew Perry.

- Anyone who needs a laugh this weekend should tune into Kattpacalypse premiering tomorrow at 10:00 on Showtime. Katt Williams will be taking on everything from Mitt Romney to the Michael Jackson murder trial. Maybe he will even explain why he went with the munchkin hairdo for the show.

Katt Williams: Kattpacalypse

- Alphas is now airing twice on Mondays. The first airing is at 8:00 and the second begins at 10:00. There will be an Alphas live chat at 8:00 on its Facebook page so you can discuss the new episode with your fellow Alphas fans. They will also be giving away two signed DVDs and two Alphas t-shirts to participants chosen at random during the chat. Head over to Alpha’s Facebook page to join the live chat visit the following

- Kathryn Kennish may be having trouble having her book published on her show, but you can read the first chapter of Switched at Birth over at and preorder the book, being released this Tuesday on Amazon.

- We are inching closer to the September 11 premiere of Sons of Anarchy and FX has released another promo for the fifth season where you can get a first look of gust star Jimmy Smits.

- The Olympics may be over but if you are still interested in inspiring stories in niche sports, head over to Take Part to learn about Jordan Mouton, a blind judo champion.

- But for those going through more traditional sports withdrawals, Fox Sports will be airing the new reality show Ball Up Streetball. The show will follow the Ball Up Streetball league as they cross the country in search of the next best street ball star with teams coached by former NBA players Shannon Brown, Sam Cassel and Kyle Lowry.

- The Screen Actors Guild recently announced that Dick van Dyke will be honored with the 2012 SAG Lifetime Achievement Award. The award show will air Sunday, January 27, 2013 (assuming the Mayans were wrong).

- New to DVD shelves this week: You’ve Got a Friend about Bobby Graham who is a twelve-year-old boy whose personal problems haven’t gotten in the way of his dream: to win the American Soapbox Derby Championship. With the odds against him, including his school foe and main competition in the race, Bobby is determined to prove himself with a personal best and unbeatable new self-confidence and stars John Schneider.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

I Want My Music Television - 8/23/12

There have been a couple of videos that have caught my eye lately so I thought I’d give them some love since the death of Musical Television left a void for a forum on the art form. If you are interested in buying the video through iTunes, click the title link (where available). If you are interested in buying the song, look for a link in the analysis.

Trying Not to Love You – Nickleback

Big news in the Nickelback world this week: a new music video featuring George Costanza and… um, that one who who was the host of that one reality show that no one watched. In lesser news, apparently the dude from Nickleback got engaged to Avril Lavigne. The internet for some reason wondered why Lavigne would get married to the dude from Nickelback, but c’mon, he is still a step up from the dude from Sum 41.

Modern Love - Matt Nathanson

When I saw all the people put on headphones I thought great, finally someone is copying the great Cake videos for Short Skirt / Long Jacket where they have people on the street critique the new Matt Nathanson song. Sadly they just listen to the song, keeping their comments to themselves; aside from place cards what I assume is what they consider modern love. Le sigh. Instead of the Lyric Video crazy video that has been going on for a year, they should introduce songs like Short Skirt / Long Jacket did.

Watch the Corner – Dinosaur Jr.

Who would have guessed that the latest Dinosaur Jr. music video (you remember that band from the nineties that was the best grunge band that never managed to have a hit), would premiere on Funny or Die and star Tommy Gavin’s daughter

St. Croix – Family of the Year

Just in time to start reminiscing about summer, here is Family of the Year in what looks to be a remake of a lost The Beach Boys music video.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The Peter Bjorn and John Award for Catchiest Indie-Pop Song of the Summer of 2012

A couple days I heard some people discussing what the song of the summer was and depressingly they came up with Call Me Maybe and really there was not much of a debate. But that got me thinking about last summer when I made an off comment that The Naked and Famous would have won the Peter Bjorn and John Award for catchiest indie-pop song of the summer if it were not for Foster the People. Since the actually songs of the summer list would be boring, I thought I would make the Peter Bjorn and John Award (who may not invented catchy indie-pop, but certainly perfected it with Young Folks) a real thing. So without further ado, here are the top five catchiest indie-pop songs of the summer, some bonus picks, along with the official inaugural winner of The Peter Bjorn and John Award.

Honorable Mention: Call Me Maybe – The Roots, Jimmy Fallon, and Carly Rae Jepsen: Yeah, I just said I was disappointed that the original version is everything that was wrong about the summer of 2012 (severe droughts are what happens when you let a Canadian rule pop culture), but The Roots, along with some children toys, can make anything awesome. If you have not seen The Roots version, which is the only version worth listening to, check it out below:

Legacy Artist: Don't Leave Me (Ne me quitte pas) – Regina Spektor: No one does indie-pop better than Regina Specktor who dusted off one of her older songs and managed to make it weirder and better at the same time. Who else could make Paris the rain sound fun?

5. Bottom of the River– Delta Rae: A big year for folk this year with three songs on this list that could also be categorized in the genre. This song is just handclapping and footstompingly awesome.

4. Tongue Tied – Grouplove: Nothing like a good shout along chorus to get you in consideration for this award. Bonus points for the weird backwards video that went along with the song.

3. Warrior – Kimbra, Mark Foster and A-Trak: Yeah the chick from the Gotye song (which is not on the list because it was more of a winter / spring song and it is not really peppy enough) released her own album this year while you were trying to teach yourself the xylophone solo, this is the catchiest song from it with a little help from last year’s unofficial winner of the Peter Bjorn and John Award.

2. Little Talks – Of Monsters and Men: Whenever you encourage shouting, you are destined for this list. And music does not get more awesomely weird then when it comes from Iceland, where this sextet hails from. Horns are also a plus too.

1. Ho Hey – The Lumineers: But when it comes to shouting during the summer of 2012, no one will make you go hoarse faster than The Lumineers. The trio took a hip-hop phrase mainstay (I want to ignorantly believe this song was inspired by Naughty by Nature) and essentially turned into the percussion for the song. I dare you to try and listen to this song and not put it on repeat for the next hour or two.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

You Always End a Conversation One Sentence too Late

The cast of Bunheads before the mace

Note to self: when writing an uber-peppy script, it may not be the best idea, no matter how shocking it is, to kill off what the audience may believe to be an important character at the end of the Pilot. After one of the most promising premieres in recent memory, Bunheads had to go the downer route by killing of the main character’s husband just minutes after getting married thus tearing down what they spent the first fifty-eight minutes building up.

Not surprisingly, Hubble’s death hung like a black cloud over the first season of the show. And every time it started to pick some momentum back up, out of nowhere they had to remind you that Michelle’s husband, who she did not even really love, had died tragically. She meets a new dude, who she hits it off with, she starts balling over her dead husband after coitus. And of course he had to return for the finale in a dream sequence to up the creepy factor.

It also does not help for a shown named Bunheads, I am not entirely sure what any of the names of the dancers are besides Boo (really, how do you forget a name like that). I think the mean girl is named Sasha, but I would not bet my life on it. I just watched the finale and I still could not name the other two off the top of my head which is a shame because the tall one has the best comic timing of the bunch but she was given the least to do in the first set of episodes. Am I am not sure if it is a good or bad thing that it turned out that Mindy Riggins turned out to be the best part of the show.

But the one aspect the show had going for itself was its rapid fire delivery that, even if a pop culture reference or two went over your head, there would still be plenty of good one your recognize per episode even if there was no way a bunch of teen girls would talk about let alone even know about. I like The Ringer was too busy dancing to catch any of these references. And the season did end on a high point with one of the funniest scenes I have seen on television all year when Michelle sprayed all the dancers in the face with mace. That alone should keep me laughing until the show returns, and when it does, hopefully they can help us forget about Michelle’s dead husband.

Bunheads 1.x gets a Terror Alert Level: Elevated [YELLOW] on my Terror Alert Scale. You can stream recent episodes on Hulu. You can also download Bunheads on iTunes.

Monday, August 20, 2012

It’s The World We Live In, Not The World We Want

The 2nd Mass heading to South Carolina

It was hard not to get excited for the first season of Falling Skies: Steven Spielberg producing an alien invasion show on cable, TNT at that because they apparently know drama. But those first ten episodes just fell flat. The skitters were scary in an creepy incest kind of way, but it was hard to care about the characters, and the plot, much like the characters, did not seem to go anywhere.

But early in the second season, the show, much like the 2nd Mass, found its direction. And their compass pointed south to Charleston, South Carolina. It was a long march which saw a few new obstacles like the new mini bugs that ate the dude from The Killing inside out. There an even smaller bug(? Maybe machine?) that crawled out of Tom’s eye which turned out to be a tool of the new skidder rebellion. But is that just a skidder contraption or do the Overlords have their own and planted in Hal? But none was creepier than our first look inside a harness factory where we learned the harnesses are an actual life form before being attached to the children.

Then when they finally arrived in Charleston, the 2nd Mass landed right in the middle of a political fight between a pseudo-dictator and military coup. Sure this was the weakest storyline of the season (who would actually elect John Locke to a position of power). But the vacation in South Carolina seems to be short lived as Tom intends to leave the new civilization as soon as his son gets better. Although I am surprised Tom is so quick to leave the closest thing to civilization to fight some more when he is about to become a father again. Well that was the plan until the skies started falling again.

Thanks to the promo monkeys, you knew it was coming; the only question was what exactly was in the jellyfish looking things. Thankfully this is not John Locke’s old show and we actually got to see what were driving these spaceships. It turned out to be something in a suit that looked like suits of Master Chief joined with the Blue Beetle with something reptilian looking inside. If these new creatures mate with a human and there is a lizard baby birth I am out.

The show left us with the question “Friend or Foe?” Before they scrolled down to reveal a biped, I originally thought a non-harnessed skidder was going to step out the spaceship. Of course it is possible that the harnessed skidders ended up growing the extra limbs. But I am going to answer the promo monkey’s question, with a question of my own, “Why does it have to be either or?” I have a feeling they are an enemy of the Overloards (the weapon that the 2nd Mass was build to keep these new aliens from landing) who will end up being enemies of humans. At any rate, hopefully season three continues the momentum built this season. And hopefully by the time the next episodes air, they can get me to start caring about some of the characters.

Falling Skies 2.x gets a Terror Alert Level: High [ORANGE] on my Terror Alert Scale.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Previewing Locked Up Abroad: Nightmare in Somalia

If there has been one thing I have learned while watching Locked Up Abroad is that you never become a drug mule, no matter how easy your buddy would have you believe it is. And if you must, certainly do not go to a third world country to collect your stash. If there was a second lesson I have learned from the show is to stay out of countries described as “war torn” especially Muslim practicing countries. Of course if everyone had heeded these rules then Locked Up Abroad would have only lasted about half a season.

Tomorrow’s episode (premiering at 10:00 on the National Geographic Channel) features Australian photojournalist Nigel Brennan who travels with Canadian reporter Amanda Lindhout (who unfortunately did not participate in the show) to report on “war torn” Somalia in July 2008. Uh oh. Note to any journalist going to a “war torn” country, when your hired bodyguards will not go to a certain part of the country, you probably should not go either. Not surprisingly Nigel and Amanda get kidnapped and held for ransom by Somali terrorists.

Just when you think this you’re your run of the mill kidnapping Locked Up Abroad story, about half way through Neil and Amanda come up with a plan to escape their captors in an unknown country leading to an edge of your seats chase through the streets that could save their family millions of dollars American of random. The whole ordeal lasted for 462 days and for those that want the extended story after watching the episode, Nigel wrote a book, The Price of Life: The True Story of an Australian Held to Ranson for 462 Days, with his sister and sister-in-law, a 467 page detailed account of his time in Somalia and how his relatives back home coped with his capture and how they tried to secure his release. You can watch a preview of the episode below:

Islam Conversion