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Showing posts from July, 2011

The Thing About SYTYCD

Why, after eight seasons, Fox's So You Think You Can Dance continues to take a backseat to ABC's increasingly ingratiating Dancing With The Stars remains a mystery to me. Is it because it's a summer show? Is it because the general perception is that it's mainly "for kids"? SYTYCD 's ratings are frustratingly measly compared to those of the below-cruise-ship-variety-show standards seen on Stars . Whereas DWTS seems to revel in sensationalistic cheese, SYTYCD celebrates true artistry. While I do acknowledge how much blood, sweat, and tears all of those reality stars, football players, and Tinseltown burnouts go through, I can't help but scoff at their efforts...because there seems to underlie a narcissism that fuels them to go on, stumble across the stage to non-pro choreography, and soak up a spotlight they hope will shine long after they're voted off. And here's a little-known fact: they get paid handsome salaries per episode, none of it

What I Learned at Comic-Con

Call me presumptuous, but I think I deserve some kind of badge of honor for surviving through five Comic-Cons. No? Well, here are a few things I've picked up on since making my first annual trek to the San Diego festivities in 2007: 1. If you plan to show up an hour early to a panel in either Ballroom 20 or Hall H: Do. Not. Bother. The 1,200 or so deodorant-challenged individuals already in line thought a 3-hour head-start was wise...and that doesn't include the other 800 who got there at the buttcrack of dawn to see a sneak peek of a movie they can eventually catch on YouTube one hour later (Note to Comic-Con organizers: please set up a frickin' system that can accommodate press in a more efficient way). 2. However, if you're really desperate to get in, hover near the exit and ask attendees if they plan to go back inside. They'll be the ones holding little colored pieces of paper that grants them a re-entry; hopefully they'll give you their slip. Unfortunatel

Preview of a Bestseller

If this were a noir-ish crime novel, I would open this chapter describing the raindrops on a window of the late-night diner where a hardened detective is sipping coffee and waiting for his next case to come walking in. There would be adjectives used to convey the mood of the place, the lighting from the neon sign outside, the glare of the veteran waitress who’s desperate for a cigarette break in the back alley where she once fooled around with a greasy short-order cook who eventually got drafted to war. If this were young-adult romantic thriller, I would start out with the chaotic hustle and bustle of a high school hallway and delve into the thoughts of a female protagonist who’s been pining for the pale-skinned new boy in town with a dark and deadly secret (his habitual drinking of human blood wouldn’t be revealed until the third or fourth chapter – naturally). There would be complaints about upcoming exams, inner monologues about single-parent homelife and general adolescent loneli

The Scorching: 2011 Summer Playlist - Vol. 4

More tunage. More first-listens. More summery slickness. Apparently there's no such thing as trilogies anymore (hence this fourth installment). So, after you've said your goodbyes to Harry Potter, after you've gotten the sand out of your ass, and after you've recovered from Comic-Con, try these on for size: 1. "Without You" by David Guetta feat. Usher - For when you've grown tired of that Taio Cruz mess. 2. "Blackout" by Breathe Carolina 3. "Heavy Metal Lover" by Lady GaGa - Featuring the best opening lyric of any dance song this year, "HML" is an irresistible industrial concoction with a cooing chorus that just. Won't. Go. Away. 4. "Swagger Jagger" Cher Lloyd 5. "In The Dark" by Dev 6. "One Club At A Time" by Midnight Red - B-side RedOne at its best, but still a worthy addition: 7. "Houdini" by Foster The People 8. "Lighters" by Bad Meets Evil feat. Bruno Mars 9.

Carmageddon: L.A. at its Most Overdramatic

When it comes to making a fuss, Los Angeles is the master of it. The city with a reputation for being one giant playground, full of people with narcissistic tendencies, is that five-year-old child screaming in the sandbox, "Mommy, look at me! Look at me!" Here in sunny SoCal we have perfected the art of making mountains out of molehills, or rather, swimming pools out of soy lattes. And we can't help it. We got the constant threat of earthquakes. We got mudslides. We got the Oscars, the Emmys, every ass-kissing awards ceremony imaginable. We got the Kardashians. If you haven't heard by now (i.e. if you live in a normal part of the world), L.A. is going through a crisis. Ten miles of the 405 Freeway, one of the major interstates here in Southern California, will shut down tonight for 56 hours due a bridge demolition that is part of a $1 billion project aiming to widen the northbound and southbound lanes. It was only a few weeks ago that the press coined the term "

Farewell Mr. Potter

My first trip to Hogwarts took place shortly after Thanksgiving in 2001. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone was a charming affair with Chris Columbus at the helm and adorable children with British accents practicing magic and running around in grown-up clothing. It was, to put it tritely, cute . My mom and I took in a matinee of the film and enjoyed the kid-lit adaptation at the Regal 18 in New Rochelle while I was home from college during my senior year. I thought it was a pleasant enough fantasy saga that would help me get in the mood for the forthcoming opening chapter of The Lord of the Rings . After all, everyone back then could have used a little wizardry; 9/11, having been only two months prior, was still fresh in our memories. Then, the inevitable sequel came while I was still adjusting to my new life in Los Angeles. I kept seeing the words "darker" and "scarier" being thrown around to describe Chamber of Secrets , and after throwing down ten bucks

Me, Justin & Mila

If you'd like to check out my Sunday morning on the beach with the stars of Friends With Benefits , click on over here . I also got to chat with Justin and Mila's fabulous co-stars, Jenna Elfman (who's quite a dancer...who knew?) and Patricia Clarkson (what a dame).

Revenge of the 90s

I think one of the prerequisites for settling into your early 30s is accepting that teenagers today don't have what you had when you were their age (and vice versa). Also accepted is the more apparent fact that 90s nostalgia is alive and kicking in the 2010s. By now, popular culture has gotten it down to a science: What was hot 20 years ago tends to rear its vintage head and come back into vogue. The 80s loved its 60s. The 90s grooved to the 70s. And the 00s reveled in the 80s. So it makes logical sense that the 90s have now become all the rage. The proof is all around us... The CW caught on early by bringing back 90s stalwarts 90210 (successfully) and Melrose Place (unsuccessfully) three television seasons ago. The Backstreet Boys are back on tour (granted, co-headlining with NKOTB). No Doubt is prepping to release a new album later this year. Plaid flannel is in. VH1 has begun to air a block of morning programming dedicated to videos by the likes of Ace of Base, Garbage,

The Blazing: 2011 Summer Playlist - Vol. 3

Apparently there's plenty of tunage to go around this summer. So much, in fact, I've assembled another 30 tracks for your listening pleasure; I present to you my third volume. After all, doesn't everything come in threes? May this accompany you on your travels to the pool, to Comic-Con, to your grandmother's house, or to your local Starbucks for an icy Coconut Mocha Frappucino. Enjoy: 1. "Party Rock Anthem" by LMFAO 2. "Schoolin' Life" by Beyonce - Another deluxe edition track that unfortunately will never be released as a single for all to enjoy (why, God, why?), so get your fix of this refreshingly 80s-esque anthem of sass here: 3. "Aphrodite" by Kylie Minogue 4. "Talk Talk Talk" by Darren Hayes 5. "Big Fat Bass" by Britney Spears feat. 6. "Punching in a Dream" by The Naked and Famous 7. "Galaxies" by Owl City 8. "Not That Kinda Girl" by The Saturdays 9. "Mr Saxobeat

Theme Song of the Month: July

Although I like to think that I got some rhythm in me - compared to some other writers I know who have never stepped foot on a dance floor - I know my moves will never land me a ticket to Vegas on SYTYCD . But still...give me a funky groove, some souful vocals, and a catchy-as-hell chorus, and I shall proceed to bust a move and further prove that my ass has a mind of its own once it's given a proper bass to follow. "Moves Like Jagger" by Maroon 5 featuring Christina In-Need-of-a-Rebranding Aguilera is currently the song I can't get enough of. Whistle along, won't you? As Jcrazy914 once commented on YouTube, I hope my neighbors like this song.