Here we have the second book off of the Time's 100 Books, and to paraphrase the same bad ass knight that I paraphrased in my first choice, I chose wisely.
Snow Crash tells the story of Hiro Protagonist, a hacker in the future who stumbles into a religious zealot's plot to reboot the human brain using an ancient Summerian computer virus. And the rebooting will essentially make people his followers
Get all that?
Stephenson is not known for easy to grasp plots. This is not the first of his works that I have read. Of the ones I have read, this is the easiest to follow. Living in both Reality and the Metaverse (think 3D Internet) Hiro races against time to uncover who is behind the virus Snow Crash; which is the virus that will reboot the human brain.
Its dense, no doubt about it. Hell of a read though. Stephenson brings in elements of ancient languages, the Bible, tech stuff and commercialism. Smashes it together and delivers a hell of a read.
Alfred: Why are you so determined to prove this Penguin is not what seems? Must you be the only lonely man beast in town?
The second (and final) outing of Michael Keaton as Batman, sees him dueling with The Penguin (Danny DeVito) and Catowman (Michelle Pfeiffer).
I remember two things about when this movie came out. The advertising for it and Danny DeVito creeping me out for years. In fact, up until my recent viewing the one thing I would always remember about the movie is just how creepy DeVito was. When I had this on VHS, I used to skip it and go straight to Batman Forever. I always found this movie creepy; and never had huge desires to watch it regularly. Its still not one of my favorite Batman's, but I think it no longer creeps me out.
I think I'm going to be able to stick to one choice for this one.
Yup, Ally McBeal. Leanda used to watch it, and with its availability on the all knowing Netflix Instant viewing, we started it up. Definitely not something that I originally thought I'd like, but its started to grow on me a bit. Also knowing that it has Peter "He is Vigo!" MacNicol and eventually a Bluth didn't hurt the shows chances for me eventually taking a shine to it.
The season 2 premier of seaQuest DSV. Yes, I did watch this MANY times. I recorded it off of the tv, and damn near wore that tape out. Perhaps not the greatest thing for one to watch more than five times, but hey, I was young. Give a lad a break.
The Joker: I have given a name to my pain, and it is Batman.
Michael Keaton. Jack Nicholson. Batman and Joker. Directed by Time Burton, this flick saw the battle between Batman and Joker brought to the big screen. This is one hell of a movie.
This is without question a classic. Nicholson's take on the Joker was perfect. Keaton's performance as Bruce Wayne/Batman is great as well. I think he does better as Wayne than Batman, but hey, its not like the got George Clooney to play Batman.
Also of note is Billy Dee Williams as Harvey Dent. Now, I don't know if Burton's plan was to eventually bring Two Face to the party, but I think I would have wanted to see Lando as Two Face.
In conclusion, I love this film. I've seen it many times, and will continue to watch it for years to come.
And as with all entries so far, I have more than one.
First up, Arrested Development. I remember seeing previews for it, and not thinking too much of it. Then my roomate Chris (in one of several cases) sat me down to watch it. Several episodes later I was hooked.
Second up, is Buffy The Vampire Slayer. I'd seen bits and pieces of it when looking for other things to watch, and never thought much of it. Turns out though, my wife is a HUGE fan. So one year, I bought her the complete series. Soon after, I decided to give it a go. Turns out, I really liked it.
And so it begins. 2011 Fall TV schedules are coming out. Which is a good time for me to offer my random thoughts and commentary. See above link for preview videos.
25. Alcatraz - Sam Neil! Jorge Garcia! Alcatraz Island! Yes please! Oh, and something about time travel. Whatever. I was sold at JJ Abrams. Not sure why its going to be a midseason placement, but whatever, I can wait.
24. The Playboy Club - And here I thought it was already done and called Mad Men
23. Falling Skies - Looks interesting. Alien invasion drama. Could be good.
21. Finders - A bones spin off starring Michael Clark Duncan. Could be interesting. I bet they find stuff.
20. Ringer - Starring Sarah Michelle Geller this show is about... well I'm not sure. The blurb on the above website mentions twin switching and mob ties. Sounds ok. Its on the CW which automatically adds a layer or ick in my opinion.
19. Once Upon a Time - My feel is like a season long Tenth Kingdom. I'll sign on for this!
16. Napoleon Dynomite - No. No. No. No. No. Why?
15. Charlie's Angels - Could be interesting to watch. Looks like somebody saw how popular the Hawaii Five-O reboot was and went looking for another old school cop/action show to reboot.
9. Grimm - Cops dealing with Grimm's fairy tales that come to life? Sign me the hell up please! A new, exciting idea.
4. Hell On Wheels - A Western centered around the transcontinental railroad? This may very well be the first AMC show I watch from day one.
2. Awake - A father reality jumping trying to solve if he lost his wife or son in an accident. +2 to Ugo for a Robot Chicken reference in its blurb for this show. I'll still watch this of course
1. Terra Nova - Spielberg! Dinos! Stepgen Lang! I can't wait to see this!
Really? Just one? I don't think so. I'll give you several. And these are by no means set in stone; just the first that comes to mind.
Star Trek Deep Space 9 - 'In The Pale Moonlight' The war with the Dominion is not going well. If the Romulan Empire does not join the Federation/Klingon Alliance, all is doomed. This episode details the methods used by Sisko to ensure the Romulans join the right side. They are not honorable methods, but they are needed. Star Trek fan or not, you should see this episode.
Damn. Ok, so maybe not several. I guess I could only come up with one. I know there are other episodes that could fit here, but I can't get anything out of my head other than 'oh! that episode from that season which I can't remember' So, should I think of any others, I shall add them here.
I swear I thought I lost this, but this is the original Day 1 post... enjoy!
I could write volumes about shows that should not have been cancelled. And as such, I am not going to choose only one show for this entry. Nor am I going to list every show that was erroneously cancelled. Another caveat...I am also going to limit myself to shows that I have a vested interest in. So while I do believe Firefly deserves a place on this list, I did not watch it when it first aired. Hence, no real vested interest.
1. Tru Calling
Starring Eliza Dushku (Tru Davies), this Quantum Leap esq show dealt with people who died asking for Tru Davies' help. As the first season progressed, Jason Priestley (Jack Harper) joined the cast as Tru's opposite. At the close of the first season, we see the lines drawn. Tru helping people to live, and Jack making sure they stayed dead. FOX gave it a poor second season, which started to deal with what would happen if Tru saved somebody who did not ask for help. Oh, if memory serves, FOX had cancelled it because it was not compatible with the show it preceded, The OC. F-U FOX number 1.
2. Arrested Development
Listen, there is always money in the banana stand. Arrested Development is an awesome show that Ron Howard did not see working as a TV show, but maybe a movie. Following the Bluth family it documented their trials and tribulations as son Michael Bluth tried to save the family from not only financial ruin, but itself. F-U FOX number 2.
3. Stargate: Universe
So what if it tried to be Battlestar Galactica in cinematography? The third installment in the Stargate franchise saw a crew that was thrown way the hell across the universe (Star Trek Voyager anybody?) Anyway, it was a great show that was really hitting its stride, and its a shame that SyFy pulled the plug.
Speaking of Quantum Leap esq shows, Journeyman was about a man Dan Vasser (Rome's Kevin McKidd) who could travel backwards in time. The catch? No idea when it was going to happen, save for some pretty nasty headaches. And then there's his ex-fiance Olivia Beale (Moon Bloodgood) who could travel froward in time. During Dan's leaps back, he would run into Olivia who would give Dan help as he altered the destiny of somebody. A hell of a show which was not given a chance to prove its self.
Masons! Knights Templar! Magic! Good! Evil! Clancy Brown! Right there is more than enough reason to love this show. This HBO epic followed the story of Ben Hawkins (Nick Stahl) as he battles Brother Justin (Clancy Brown) against the backdrop of the Great Depression in the mid-western USA. Another case of a show not having enough warning before it cancelled, the second season ended on a MASSIVE cliffhanger. Even though it has no ending, it is still a show to check out. Its also a very visual show, so there is enough there to delight.
A show I hate... hmm. I'm going to have to say reality shows in general. Stuff like Jersey Shore, Real World, Survivor, American Idol just don't do it for me. Now, hate's a strong word, I would say more like intensely dislike.
That being said, there are some reality shows that I have watched. Two (on of all places) SyFy. One having just aired about special effects artists called Face/Off and the other about people living alternative lifestyles (naturalist, voodoo priestess, etc) called Its A Mad Mad House.
Thor: This mortal form weakens. I require sustenance.
The fourth installment of Marvel's series leading to The Avengers, stars none other than your God of Thunder and mine, Thor!
Thor Odinson (called so because he's the son of Odin) is the heir apparent to the throne of Asgard. His brother Loki is a right tricky bastard, and long story short, causes Thor to be banished to Earth. Here, Thor (Kirk's father Chris Hemsworth) is hit on (see the movie, you'll get the joke) by Jane Foster (Natalie Portman). Agent Coulson of S.H.I.E.L.D has a great part to play in this film as he runs the effort to protect the hammer Mjolinar from everybody but himself. Eventually Thor gets his power back and whups some ass, both on Earth and back on Asgard.
I really enjoyed this movie. I'd place it pretty much on par with Iron Man. I love that they are giving most of the Avengers their own origin story movies first, so when that film comes out, it can hit the ground running. I was originally a little skeptic about Kenneth Branagh directing, but he did an AMAZING job.
As far as tying into the rest of the universe, we had a mention of Bruce Banner, Hawkeye makes an uncredited appearance, and Sam Jackson shows up as Nick Fury in the very spoilery post-credits scene, which is beginning to give us an idea as to what the Avengers will be about.
Next up, Capitan America in July; which in the trailer, we see Tony Stark's dad.
Speaking of trailers, at the theater I went to we had trailers for Capitan America and Green Lantern. Which is ok, but I would have thought Marvel would have wanted a trailer for X-Men First Class. Oh well.
In what is now becoming typical fashion, I don't have just one, I've got three!
First up, The Cape. Your typical show about a straight shooting cop who gets framed for the deaths of many, only to fall in with an underground circus and be give a special cape to go out and avenge his name and protect his family. A bit to dark for the kiddies, this show followed the main character as he learned to use his new cape and tracked the baddies with the help of Summer Glau. This show was full of win. But NBC sucks and cancelled it. It would go great on SyFY...but well, I'm not speaking to them right now.
Law and Order:LA. Yup, yet another Law and Order was fired off this season. After an initial bumpy start, it took some time off, came back, killed Skeet Ulrich and got down right badass. But, NBC cancelled it.
Hawaii Five-O. Yes, its a procedural. But its set in Hawaii. And it has Scott Caan! Daniel Dae Kim! Grace Park! And some other guy. Oh, and it has involvement from show runners of LOST. While I've gotten bored of procedurals recently, I really like H5O. Its fun, well written and beautifully shot.
Who knew that water rights in the 1930s was such a big deal? I didn't, at least not until I watched Roman Polanski's 1974 film starring Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway.
Set in the 1930s, this film tells the story of JJ "Jake" Gittes, a private detective who is hired to tail the head of LA's water department, whose wife suspects him of infedelity. Except, its not his real wife who hires Jake. The guys realy wife (Faye Dunaway) shows up and is rather irate that Jake's been prying into her business. Oops. Feeling duped (cause he was) Jake is determined to get to the bottom of whats going on. And without spoiling, its not what you think.
Its easy to see why this film is held in such high regard. While I found it quite slow at times, I really enjoyed the scenery and seeing a very young Jack Nicholson. I also kept picturing this starring Humphrey Bogart. Don't know why; but I could have also seen this filmed in black and white, and getting a much deeper film noir feel.
I choose Chuck for this day's entry. Yes, it just got renewed for a fifth season, but this show has been under constant threat of cancellation. Which is sad really. This is a fun show that speaks to the geek in all of us. Pay attention, or you might miss a sight gag or joke. Or Alice Cooper's Feed My Frankenstein heralding the return of the Buy More staff.
And Chuck knows Kung-Fu, so watch his show, or he may kick your ass.
We all know who Wil Wheaton is. At least we should. Blogger, writer, entertainer, Wesley Crusher. Ah, its the last one that has caused much contention among fans. Wesley was a love him or hate him character. Mostly hate. I never had an issue with the character myself; but reading this book, you see that Mr. Wheaton was not the biggest fan of the book either.
Mr. Wheaton went and watched the first half of season 1 of TNG. And then he wrote a book putting down his memories of the filming, and his thoughts as he watched them anew.
Pretty damn funny stuff.
Even if you are not a fan of Star Trek, this is a great book to check out. The way he writes, you don't need to know anything about Star Trek. You just need to sit back and enjoy the journey.
Oh, and Wil (can I call you that?) I still have not got a response to the fan letter I sent you when I was in the third grade. That was...a long time ago. I can't count that high.
So, we go from 30 Day Movie Challenge, to a 30 Day TV Challenge, which I um, appropriated from The Definition of Procrastination. Its going to take me a few days to think out some of these and plan a head a bit, but here are the topics.
I'd also love to hear if anybody had any predictions on what you might think I'll be choosing for each day. Look for day one to start in a week or less.
Day 01- A show that should have never been canceled
Day 02 - A show that you wish more people were watching
Day 03 - Your favorite new show (aired this t.v season)
Day 04 - Your favorite show ever
Day 05 - A show you hate
Day 06 - Favorite episode of your favorite t.v show
Day 07 - Least favorite episode of your favorite t.v show
Day 08 - A show everyone should watch
Day 09 - Best scene ever
Day 10 - A show you thought you wouldn’t like but ended up loving
Day 11 - A show that disappointed you
Day 12 - An episode you’ve watched more than 5 times
So today I did 4.09 miles in 53'30". Average pace of 13'05". However, today is the worst I feel after running. I think part of it is pushing a bit to hard; and lacking a heart rate monitor, I can't tell for certain. So, to my runner pals out there - any suggestions for a good heart rate monitor?
So for those that may not know, Stephen Spielberg is going to be doing a movie based on the life of our 16th President, Abraham Lincoln. Now I am a tad on the excited side as Lincoln is one of several presidents I have an interest in. Oh, I got the following information from this site. Anyway, lets talk casting.
Daniel Day-Lewis as Abraham Lincoln. Yes please. This will be amazing. I had heard at one point Liam Neeson was to play the president, but I think Mr. Day-Lewis is the better choice.
Sally Field as Mary Todd Lincoln. I can buy this.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Robert Todd Lincoln This works too.
And my personal favorite
Tommy Lee Jones as Thaddeus Stephens. Stephens was a great power in Congress during the Civil War, and if you look at a pic of him, Mr. Jones does bear a resemblance.
Clearly, we know how the film will end, but I am curious as to how much of the movie will cover the Civil War. I'm guessing a good chunk of it, but I think it will show us more the political side of the war than battles. Other casting notes include Bruce McGill (who I think might play Grant), Hal Holbrook and John Hawkes (who would be my choice for John Wilkes Booth). But that brings another question in how much post assassination will the movie cover? Regardless, this is one film I will be keeping a very close eye on.
I was first introduced to Blind Guardian via the music review podcast, For Those About to Rock, which can be found at Simply Syndicated. Now, I'm not always the biggest of metal fans, so I began listening to this particular episode with just a half an ear.
But then I heard something surprising. The band has recorded two (2!) songs based on the epic fantasy series, The Wheel of Time. Oh, and two based on some as of yet unfinished fantasy series that currently has a series on HBO.
So I immediately focused...another quarter of my ears to the episode (hey, I was at work, had to keep some audio channels open for work related stuff)
Really, this is an AMAZING album. From the episode by FTATR, and my own research of them, the band is very much influenced by the fantasy genre. Which is really cool. And the two WoT songs are very well done, and you can tell that they are familiar with the source material.
Here was one of my thoughts as to their musical style.
"Oh, a flute and some other instruments one would not expect from OMFG my face has just melted off ala Raiders of the Lost Ark due to the amount of awesome that is thundering into my ears at this very moment!!!"
Yes, I did just make that all up. At least the statement. The rock was indeed face melting. But I just looked away, cause thats how you stop the Ark from melting your face.
In the end, go seek out this album. Especially if you like metal, epic rock and fantasy novels.
Really? My favorite film from this time last year? Gosh, I dunno. It could be any number of films. Plus, are we talking films released this time last year? If so, I vote for Robin Hood, the one with Russell Crowe. Which was a meh movie, but considering what else was out this time last year, it gets my vote. Or maybe Prince of Persia. Oh! Never mind, Iron Man 2 was released this time next year, so it wins.
I liked them all. I can't think of one movie that I could consider a favorite when I was a kid. If I saw it, I liked it. Especially Star Trek. And Ghostbusters. A Few Good Men was a fave, along with the second season premier of seaQuest. Now there's a tape I wore out. Back to the Future. Mortal Kombat. Heck, even Das Boot was fairly regular when I was a kid. So was The Sand Pebbles.
Well, I was going to go with two movies here, but I decided to do the more obscure of the two. Reason I chose the one I chose however is because it starred a future President when it came out.
Hellcats of the Navy, starring Ronald Regan and his future wife Nancy Davis. I used to watch this all the time when I was a kid, and recently re-watched it. Wasn't as good as I remember, but still a pretty decent sub movie at a time where they were being cranked out.
Now, maybe you've seen it, so to you its not obscure, but most people I talk to have never heard of it, hence my choice for most obscure movie I've ever seen.
I have chosen Das Boot. Now, I almost chose this as my favorite documentary as well because, well, I consider it to be a documentary in addition to a fine action film. Based on the book of the same name, this movie follows the patrol of a German U-Boat towards the end of WWII. Oh, BTW, this all actually happened. The book it was based on was written by a German war correspondent who served on the U-Boat this movie is about.
Fun fact about filming, a little movie called Raiders of the Lost Ark was filming nearby and borrowed the exterior model for the scene where Indy jumps onto a U-Boat.
Regardless, this is a movie that all should see. I'm not saying you need to go out and get the original 6 hour miniseries, but I highly recommend any version of this movie to be seen.
4.1 miles today. 55 minutes. 13' Not bad if I say so myself. Definitely thought I was not going to make 4 miles in under an hour. The route I did today had a respectable amount of hills, plus anytime I tried to maintain a decent pace, I got this really random pain in my side. Hopefully this will work its self out. In any event, completing 4 miles in an hour or less is in my grasp.